Friday, September 21, 2012

Sin is Sin

We have a tendency to label sin to make ourselves feel better; guilty pleasure, bad sin, not so bad sin, I'm not as bad as others, at least I didn't do that.  But in reality sin is sin.  It all separates us from God.  If you are a believer, your sin breaks fellowship with God.  The only difference in sin is the  consequences for the sin.  All sin is the same, but the consequences for cursing verses murder are different.
I want to view sin the way God views it.  I want to live in such a way that others see Jesus in me.  I don't want premeditated sin to rear it's ugly head.  That is were bondage comes into our lives.  Premeditated sin keeps us from hearing God and following his plan for our life's. 
When we live through the power of the Holy Spirit, He convicts us of our sin, so therefore we can repent immediately and our communication isn't broken with our heavenly Father.
In Beth Moore's bible study David, she talks about the consequences of King David's sin with Bathsheba.  Remember Bathsheba became pregnant and David had her husband killed.  When King David and Bathsheba's baby was born, he was sick.  God told David that his baby would die. 
What did David do?  He prayed and fasted.  He wanted his baby to live.  Beth Moore says that God answered David's prayer with a no.  Through this act David sought God and His relationship was restored.  God did forgive Him but he still had consequences.  Not every baby that dies is a consequence of sin.  However, God used this baby's death to bring David closer to Him.
God had mercy on David.  He lifted the curse from King David's marriage to Bathsheba and even gave them a new baby boy named Solomon. 
You see we all mess up and there are different consequences for our actions.  But God is still good and He is merciful.  He can use and will use us if will are willing.  Romans 8:28 says that "God works all things together for good, to those who love him and are called according to his purpose." 
It doesn't mean all things are good, but that God will work them for God.  God can use the bad things that happen to us and yes, even our sin to work for good.  God used King David even after He sinned numerous times.  So King David's sin is not greater than our sin and God restored him and used him.  He can use us also.  Sin is sin and when we realize it hurts God, then can He use it for His glory, no matter what the consequences may be.
We don't want to be like King David and run.  Once forgiven, we need to move forward.  It is really damaging to us and others if we consistently live in our past.  I call this our "Shoulda, Coulda, Woulda."  King David was forgiven, but didn't live like a forgiven man nor did he live in the power of the Holy Spirit.  If he would have, He would not have allowed a thing like rap to go unpunished in his own household and he would have restore his relationship with his son, Absalon, a lot sooner.  I think that is why King David fled when Absalson was trying to steal his kingdom.  He probably felt like he had done so much wrong, who was he to lead.  How could he tell someone what is right when he himself didn't do it. 
I think we do this all the time, especially with our kids.  We don't want to tell them no, because we did that when we were kids.  We don't want to be hypocrites.  Because of this,
 we continue to live in the past and think we can't be effective in future.  This is a lie we have believed for too long.  We can be effective and use our past to teach others.  I think that is what God wants.  To use us, all of us, the good, the bad, the ugly to reach others. 
God called David to be King and even though David sinned, he was still King.  Even though we mess up, we are still useful.  God wanted David to act like a King even after his mess up, but instead he ran and hid.  Don't run and hide.  Be the person God called you to be.   Let people know you mess up, but it is God who forgives and restores.  He humble about your mistakes. Once that happens move forward with the task God has given you.

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Curriculum That's Worked For Us

I have had several mother's ask me what we use for homeschooling, so I thought I would share what has worked for us. 
I started in preschool using Horizons.  It is fabulous. 
Horizons Preschool Curriculum Set 
I have posted a link so you can view a sample of the teachers material.  This curriculum has everything including, singing, bible, science, math, P.E. ... etc.  Our kids loved it.  They learned so much and they were far more advanced than some of the first graders in public schools.

Our learning was not just limited to this curriculum.  For example:  I taught them left and right when we were driving in the van.  I would say we are turning left or as they began to understand I would ask them which direction we were turning.

I have found over the years that most of the homeschool curriculum out there is good, however it is not for every child.  Abeka worked great for our oldest, but didn't work well for our 2nd child.  Video homeschool was great for our second child who was in 5-K, but my first child felt board and hated sitting in front of the TV.

Both children however, seem to do good on Bob Books and All About Spelling. 

BOB Books Set #1: Beginning ReadersThe All About Spelling Program
Our first child is in second grade but reads on a 6 grade level.  Our second child is entering 1st grade and struggles with reading.  All About Spelling is a unique and fun way to learn phonic with hands on learning.  I want to purchase All About Reading when level two becomes available.  We haven't offically started grammer yet, although I am leaning toward Easy Grammer.

For science and social studies we use BJU (Bob Jones University). 
Science 1--Student Text, Updated Second Edition, Softcover   - Heritage Studies Grade 1 Homeschool Kit   -
For math I find Horizons to work best for us along with Hands on Stardard.  Hands on Stardards uses manipulatives and is hands on, while Horizons is more worksheet driven.
Horizons Math, Grade 1, Complete Set   -     
        By: Math
 Hands-On Standards®: Photo-Illustrated Lessons for Teaching with Math Manipulatives, Grades 5-6Hands-On Standards® Book & Kit: Grades PreK–K

I also use School House Rock video's to teach American History and multiplication.  Not only is it fun, it is a great way to get younger kids to learn the basics.  The songs are easy to remember and pretty soon your first grader will know the preamble. 
An easy way to teach skip counting is through songs.  I found this great CD that teaches the kids how to skip count using bible stories.  Once they have mastered skip counting, learning to muliply becomes easy cheesey.
Skip Count Kid Bible Heroes CDI posted two links below for this resource.

Please leave a comment.  We would love to know what has worked for you and  if you have any questions.