Will You Be Bored in Heaven?

will you be bored in heaven

“If your heart takes more pleasure in reading novels, or watching TV, or going to the movies, or talking to friends, rather than just sitting alone with God and embracing Him, sharing His cares and His burdens, weeping and rejoicing with Him, then how are you going to handle forever and ever in His presence…? You’d be bored to tears in heaven, if you’re not ecstatic about God now!” -Keith Green

A very, very dear friend of mine put that quote as her status update on Facebook yesterday. Since then, I haven’t been able to get it off my mind or my heart.

Will I be bored in heaven?

I don’t want to be! I long for the day when I will be walking the streets of gold hand in hand with my Jesus, singing songs of praise to His holy name, and thanking Him over and over for what He did for me.

But do I really SHOW that here on earth?

Am I taking the time to teach my children the importance of truly living a life for Jesus? Where reading my Bible, singing songs of praise, and serving Jesus in whatever way possible takes up more time than video games, movies, books, or tv?

I must commit to put Christ first. HE is worth it. Jesus is all I need.

Matthew 6:24 – No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon.

Will you be bored in heaven?

This Year, I will Choose Joy

Last year, I selected one word to focus on. That word was “Purge.

This year, I want to go in a different direction. While I loved the word I selected last year, and it was exactly what I need at that time, this year, I need something else. Something more.

That’s why…

choose joy

The verses I mention above are as follows: “My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations; Knowing this, that the trying of your faith worketh patience. But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing.” James 1:2 – 4KJV

If the end of 2013 is any indication of how 2014 will start, I must commit to “counting it all joy” no matter what comes my way. In the last 2 weeks, my 2 year old had a seizure, and my step-father was admitted into the hospital with tumors. I have been hurt and let down by people I love dearly. And while every part of me wants to sit down, cry, and ask, “Why, God?!” I will stand firmly on the words of my Jesus, and I will choose joy.

Our church has been in revival this week, and man! Has it been good! I’m pretty sure each message was written and every word spoken was just for me. The most powerful message, though, was one that Brother Gary Crisp preached on Monday night. The passage of Scripture he used was Luke 10:25 – 37, the story of the Good Samaritan. He didn’t preach on us needing to be like the Good Samaritan, instead, he preached on how the Christian life is like that of the man that was on the journey… the one that fell among thieves, was wounded, and half dead.

I will tell you, in the past few weeks, I have felt half dead.

In his message, Brother Crisp mentioned the hurt of “church hurt.” I can only think of a few things that hurt worse than the feeling of another man or woman of God causing you hurt. I have felt this hurt, and it has left me feeling half dead. I’ve had other friends that have lied to me, deceived me, belittled me, and just let me down. I’ve listened to my mom cry into the phone, “I can’t go through this again…” as the threat of cancer rages in the life of her husband. (My daddy died of cancer 15 years ago. My mom was my rock during that time. My heart aches that she is even dealing with this again.) I spent hours in the hospital not knowing why my son went into a violent seizure in the middle of a church service. I have shed so many tears in the past month… more tears than I can count.

BUT… I WILL CHOOSE JOY.

During last night’s service, one of the pastors said, “Don’t give up. You might be one prayer away from the answer you’ve been searching for. Press on.”

So, that’s what I’m going to do. I’m going to press on. I will remain faithful to my Jesus. I will remain faithful to my church. I will read my Bible, and fill my heart and mind with the words God has just for me. I will pray for His direction for my life. Maybe I will never get to teach a Sunday School Class or lead a women’s Bible study. But I will press on. I will be faithful to the positions God has given me: A wife who prays for her husband diligently, a mother who teaches her children the importance of a life in Christ, a friend who can encourage others when they are down. If I can remain faithful to those things, maybe, just maybe, they will prepare me for something greater. And even if not, if I remain faithful, one day I can stand before the throne of God and hear, “Well done, good and faithful servant.” Because that’s what matters: What my Jesus thinks of me. Not what anyone else may think.

And whatever circumstance I am in, I will choose to rejoice. I have been blessed.

This year, won’t you choose joy too?

Have a Bad Mother’s Day? Read This.

Something has rubbed me the wrong way today, and I just can’t keep quiet about it any longer.

My facebook newsfeed today has been full of moms complaining about their Mother’s Day. I’ve read quotes like the following:

  • My husband didn’t bother to get me the $600 bracelet I wanted.
  • All I wanted was a day to myself. So much for that.
  • What a crappy Mothers Day. I’m so tired of this. I just want to be done.
  • All I got for Mother’s Day were stupid handmade gifts from the kids. (This was a direct quote. Someone really said these exact words.) 🙁
  • Can you believe I still had to do laundry and dishes on Mothers Day?

Or my absolute favorite…

  • My kids wouldn’t leave me alone all day!

My heart hurts. When did motherhood become such a bad thing? And why, the one day of the year when we celebrate Moms, do we expect to get a day off from motherhood?

I’m going to remind you all of something you already know: Children are a gift from God.

Psalm 127: 3 – 5
Lo, children are an heritage of the LORD: and the fruit of the womb is his reward. As arrows are in the hand of a mighty man; so are children of the youth. Happy is the man that hath his quiver full of them: they shall not be ashamed.

I’m not just talking about having a large number of children. Whether you have one child or twenty, you have been blessed by God. Our children should be treated as treasures and not as trials.

Mothers Day 2013

I cannot help but think of the fact that we are God’s children. I am certain that not a day goes by where we don’t disappoint Him. Aren’t you thankful that instead of lashing out at us, or being annoyed by us, He loves us anyway? He never takes “time off” from us, either. He is always there, listening, holding out His hand, wanting to be a part of our lives. He spends every moment wanting more from us, and the closer we are to Him, the better all of our other relationships will be. If we spend more time nurturing our relationship with Christ, we will be kind, gentle, loving, and slow to anger with our husbands and our children. Really.

Am I saying that as a mom I never get tired and want to give up? Absolutely not. But my kids don’t know when I’m feeling that way, and I can promise that my Facebook friends don’t know it either.

When I get overwhelmed, I turn to Jesus and change my attitude. I turn on the gospel music station and sing songs of praise, or I take a deep breath and whisper a prayer to pull me through. There are some days when I whisper LOTS of prayers. And at the close of every day, I can still say that I am truly thankful for all that God has given me.

Your children won’t be little forever. Your sink won’t always be overflowing with dishes. You won’t always feel as stressed out as you do right now.

One day, your children will grow up and move out. You’ll be left alone with nothing but your thoughts. If you took the time to love and cherish your children, one day they will love, honor, and respect you. If you spend your time every day letting them know how much they annoy you or what a bother they are, I’d be willing to bet they won’t come around to bother you once they have the choice. You’ll be stuck at home, all alone, just wishing for something as little as a phone call.

If you didn’t get the Mother’s Day present that you wanted, or you didn’t get to sleep in because the baby needed to eat, find a reason to rejoice and praise Him anyway. Be thankful that your child wants to be with you. Be grateful that your child isn’t lying in a hospital bed fighting for life. Be glad that your child loved you enough to make you 15 cards for Mothers Day.

Let your children know how much you love them. Let them know that you value them and WANT to spend time with them. Then, get out there and actually do it! Have picnics, make mudpies, and hug them until they pull away. You’ll both be happier.

Edited to add: Ask a mom that has been trying to conceive about her Mother’s Day. Or ask the mom that has lost a child. Ask them how much your comments about “quitting motherhood” make them feel. I’m pretty sure you wouldn’t like their answer, because I’m pretty sure that they would give just about anything to experience those moments that we often take for granted. Stop thinking only about yourself and what you don’t have, or you’ll miss the whole world around you and all the blessings you already have.

Day 2: 30 Days of Giving Thanks

Day 2: Today, I am giving thanks for my Bible.

30 Days of Giving ThanksMy Bible is my guidebook to life. It gives me answers when I have none, it helps me discern right from wrong, it comforts me when nothing else will. It tells me how to be a better wife, mother, friend, and companion. It encourages me, convicts me, and forces me to dig deeper. I would truly be lost without my Bible by my side. I have read it through several times, and yet every day, I discover something new.

And if you’re curious, I only use the KJV Bible. I don’t believe God’s word should be changed to say what we as humans want it to say, and I think the KJV is easy enough to understand. If there are verses I don’t understand, I may have to study it a little more, but I don’t see that as a bad thing. Another thing that bothers me about other versions is that verses have been omitted. Every word of God is important, and should remain in tact.

What are you thankful for today?

If you are participating in 30 Days of Giving Thanks, please leave your link below. I hope you’ll also grab a button from the sidebar and share it on your blog as well. I’d love to stop by and read your posts on Giving Thanks.

Read and Share Bible for Children (Review & Giveaway)

This giveaway will end Friday, Jan. 14 at 11:59pm EST.

bible for childrenLast year for Christmas, we bought each of the older kids their own Bibles. For about the past 6 months, Parker has been begging to have a Bible of his own, but I’m not quite ready to buy him a nice, leather bound Bible. He’s still too little, and he likes markers *way* too much.

Luckily, I was introduced to the Read and Share Bible for children by Thomas Nelson Publishers. Before I get to my (and Parker’s) review of the Bible, here are some things you need to know:

The Read and Share Bible is the perfect way to share the amazing joy and wonder of God’s Word with the children in your life. Features include more than 200 beloved Bible stories, bold, bright illustrations, a discussion starter with each story, and so much more. The Read and Share Bible makes it easy for you to create long-lasting memories as you encourage a love for reading God’s Word.

Our Review of The Read and Share Bible

On Sunday mornings, during our church’s main worship service, I teach a small children’s class. It has always been so important to me that children hear the Word of God on their level so that they can understand it. I know that’s not how many in the South feel, and they want their children raised to sit in the main service, but I don’t agree. By giving them a clear understanding of the Bible when they are young, they will be more apt to staying in church and continuing to want to learn more as they grow older.

I am constantly scouring the internet, trying to find Bible stories that are appropriate for 2 – 5 year olds. And then we received the Read and Share Bible for a review. WOW. These are the stories that I have been looking for, in a language that children can understand, all in one place. I love it!

Parker's new BibleAfter browsing through the Read and Share Bible for awhile myself, I handed it over to Parker and told him that it was his own Bible. The sheer look of joy on his face made me smile from ear to ear. He carefully turned each page, taking in all the bright, bold colors of the illustrations.  He was in heaven. We read several stories together, and I loved the discussion questions at the end of each story. While Parker is still a little young to fully understand what we’re reading, he will definitely be able to grow into this Bible. And it’s perfect for the other children that I have in my Sunday morning class. I’ll definitely be taking it along with us on Sundays and reading them stories from the Read and Share Bible.

There are several features of the Read and Share Bible that I love:

  • The length of the stories – they aren’t too long. Just enough to capture the interest of a child and leave them wanting more.
  • The number of stories in the Bible – over 200 stories, all in one place. And these are stories that we know and love.
  • The illustrations – perfect for little eyes, attention grabbing and colorful.
  • The discussion questions – great for expanding on the stories and getting kids to learn more.
  • Also, each story starts with the reference where you can find the story in the Bible. This is great for older kids, so you can read straight from a Bible and then read the story.

Overall, I really like the Read and Share Bible, and Parker does too. This Bible would make the perfect gift for any child in your life that you want to encourage to learn more about God’s Word.

Want to Try the Read and Share Bible for Yourself?

Parker loves his BibleShop Now: Click here to purchase your copy from Thomas Nelson Publishing for just $16.99. You can also find the Read and Share Bible on Amazon for just $5.85! Talk about a steal!

You Can WIN! I’ve got a Read and Share Bible to give away to one lucky reader.

To Enter

Mandatory: Check out the TommyNelson website and then come back here and leave me a comment telling me why you’d like to win this Bible.
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Fine Print: Contest is open to residents of the US. If you already do any of the above, you qualify. Please leave a comment for each of the extra entries you complete. However, you must first leave the required comment as stated above. If you still have the old 5 Vinez Monkeys button on your blog, please switch it to the new Blessed Beyond Words button or your extra entry will not count. Giveaway will end on January 14th at 11:59pm (EST), and the winner will be selected via the “And the Winner is..” plugin. Winner will be notified via email upon selection, and will have 48 hours to claim their prize.

Disclaimer: I was contacted by Thomas Nelson Publishers. I was sent the necessary products to facilitate my honest and thorough review. Opinions expressed in this post are 100% my own. I have not been compensated in any other way for this post. Sponsor is fulfilling the winner’s prize as stated above.