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Friday, 29 March 2013

The Best is definitely Free, and we don't Deserve it

Now it is Easter, that time of year again, when we can look forward to the coming summer, and to remember why Jesus came onto the earth.
I have to work hard at keeping fit. It means a few hours of working out every week.
I have to work hard at staying healthy, I have to watch I moderate the right foods.
I have to work hard at looking after ten children, making sure they will be educated, fed, and clothed.
If I didn't work hard at those things, then most likely I would not have those things I have attained for; fitness, health, educated, clothed, and well fed children. Obviously, the Lord gives me the strength to do these things, but that doesn't mean I don't have to work for it.

However, the best things in life are free. God's grace is free. He has offered us a salvation which is free. He died on a cross for the sins of the world. When we realise our sinfulness, acknowledge him as Lord, and saviour,and repent He gives us heaven. Free......what's more we don't work for it, we didn't earn it, we didn't deserve it, it is God's free gift to us!
That is why John Newton wrote amazing Grace. It was his soul song, he was once a wretch, was blind, but through God's free gift he was now free.
Salvation isn't dependent on what church you go to. What clothes you wear, what works in the community you do. None of us deserve it. We can think we are good moral people and deserve heaven. We don't, no one does. We can think we can work to earn God's favour. We can't. Our righteousness is as filthy rags in His sight. If we do good works, it will be out of love to God. We love Him that first loved us.
Until we can see our sinfulness, and humble ourselves, we will not be saved. ''God didn't call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.''Luke 5:32
The ''righteous'', in the verse are the ones who see themselves as morally good already.
'' Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus:'' Rom 3:24
Check out the whole of Romans 11.
Meanwhile, have a happy Easter.
And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.'' Phil 2:8

Thursday, 28 March 2013

Feed a family of 12 for under £2

It irks me, when I read reports about parents, and children not being able to feed themselves properly. It IS possible to manage to feed a family a healthy diet on a low budget, if you have to.
Here is a quick recipe, we love. It doesn't contain meat, but is full of protein, vitamins, and minerals, and is very filling.
Lentil, Carrot, and Potato Soup
250g lentils pre rapid boiled ( I get 2 kilos from Tesco for £2.99, only £1.99 when they are on offer.)
4 large, or 6 medium carrots, chopped.( I used organic ones.)
2 onions chopped
4 medium sized potatoes.
2TBS curry powder
1 teaspoon of garlic powder.
stock to cover the veg.

Fry up the onions first, then add the stock, lentils, and the rest of the ingredients. pressure cook for 30 minutes, or you can slow cook for 4 hours.
Use a potato masher to make it all smooth. Serve with buttered bread. I like to make my own for this.
You can do some great variations on this recipe, and is especially good with butternut squash added. Also, trying different herb combinations, or even mexican flavourings.

Wednesday, 20 March 2013

Everyone Should Homeschool?

Interesting statement. This was the general summary of RC Sproul junior's book on homeschooling, which is called, 'When you rise up'.
To be honest, there are many things I agree with in this book. Without being legalistic, he argues that every parent should home educate. He argues it is a duty, as we are commanded to teach our children, and cites deuteronomy 6:7 And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up.''
I have always been one for preferring a more informal approach to teaching my children the Bible. I think they can learn more from conversations, than ever by formal teaching using a catechism. The key here, is learning to apply the Bible in every day situations, rather than parrot fashioning stuff off, without even understanding it.
If we are blessed with children, then we have a responsibility toward them. They are not ours, but are on loan from the Lord. He has entrusted them to us, and I really think it is negligent of us to think lightly, when it comes to their education. Many will be thinking, Oh, I want the best education for my child. Doesn't everyone? However, we should be thinking more on the lines of what does God require of us?
In the book, RC argues we would never dream of sending our children to a Catholic, or muslim school. My thoughts exactly, but hey, who said education in state schools was neutral? It most definitely isn't. In fact, I was reading just recently, that Gove has banned teaching of creationism, and intelligent design from schools. This in effect stifles any debate, and pushes the secular humanist agenda. Also, the redefinition of marriage will mean more unsuitable materials are pushed in the name of equality. When we consider a school for our children, we should reflect on what sort of environment is it, and the first question must be, is it God honouring? If it isn't, how do we justify ourselves?
I am not totally against the idea of Christian schools. I am however, increasingly seeing problems within these. Sadly, many calling themselves Christian and most definitely are not reflecting that.
I have heard a million objections to home schooling. Here are a few....1) I am not qualified.
2) I would never have the time.
3) I don't have the patience.
4) I have to work.
I find these quite absurd, as we are talking about our precious children. No one is perfect, and I would say it would be the exception rather than the rule that a parent was incapable of home schooling. After all, many parents aid their children in speech development, and teach them to read.
So, I would encourage parents to think carefully, on what they are going to do with their child at school age. This can start as soon as the child is born. I don't believe it is something that should be taken lightly, and we should be very prayerful seeking the Lord. After all, many of us pray for guidance on much smaller things. Surely, our child's future is on the priority list?
Also, it is more important that our children are trained in the fear of the Lord, academic excellence should not be our goal. If i was to choose the two, it would be the former. The Lord did not say to train our children in academic excellence, or the ways of the world. Would we rather a fool, or a servant of the most High?

Saturday, 9 March 2013

National Trust Membership for Home Educators.

I don't know if many are aware of this. I do know the family membership is running currently at £90 a year. unaffordable for many home educators, who are already on a tight budget. For £37.50 you can have a home educator's membership. However, as always there are strings attached. You only can visit in term time. This means no weekends. You also have to book the day before. However, in my opinion, you are still getting a lot for your money!