Archive for children

For the dads

Posted in Family, Holiday with tags , , , , , on June 19, 2011 by rylanreed

Today we have the chance to celebrate the dads that brought us up through our lives, in the hard times and also the good times, that has made us who we are as men and women.  No one’s perfect, and some fathers will say they wished they would have done things differently, but they were there ‘in the flesh and heart’ for most of their kids.  I can’t speak for all fathers, but my dad was there willing to help out whenever it was needed.  He worked his butt off and continues to do so, to give us the ability to do and try the things that we wanted to accomplish.  Some kids were not so lucky.  Their dads either died when they were young, were there only ‘in the flesh’ and didn’t really care about what was going on in their kids lives, or they left their mothers before the kids were born or a little after the marriage.

Celebrating Fatherhood: An important Missing Link

Pt. 1 – Fathers are necessary to the healthy development of children

Anthony has been raised by a loving mother and other family members for the past 11 years, but there is a huge hole in his heart… his missing father.

Research shows that a loving and nurturing father improves outcomes for children, families and communities, and fathers who live with their children are most likely to have a close, enduring relationship with their children.  Children with involved, loving fathers are significantly more likely to do well in school, have healthy self-esteem, exhibit empathy and pro-social behavior, and avoid high-risk behaviors including drug use, truancy, and criminal activity. The growing absence of fathers in children’s lives has emerged as one of our nation’s greatest social problems, resulting in lost opportunities for children and a financial burden to society.

American children are in crisis and families are in need of assistance due to father absence.  Statistics consistently point out that children who grow up without their fathers are more likely to be poor, to use drugs, to experience educational, health, emotional and behavioral problems, to be victims of child abuse, and to engage in criminal behavior than their peers who live with their married, biological (0r adoptive) parents.

{ Research: About 75 percent of children raised in father-absent homes will experience poverty before they reach age 11, compared to only 20 percent of kids in two parent families.}

The truth is this: Children need committed fathers as much as they need their mothers. While it’s impossible to piece together a complete picture through statistics alone, the following indicate some correlation between absentee fathers and a variety of social problems:

  • In a 1997 report to Congress, the U.S. Center for Mental Health Services (CMHS) provides national demographic data on children enrolled in CMHS funded services. They found that “on the whole, children living in single-parent families are more likely to experience poverty than children living in two-parent homes.” Further, “of those children living in poverty, 73 percent were living in families maintained by mothers, as compared to 22 percent of those children living with both parents, and 5 percent living with their families.”
  • In a 2004 study by the National Council on Family Relations, researchers noted that “most children (56%) live in two-biological-parent married families,” but that “the share of children residing with two biological married parents has been steadily declining.”  This decline was found to negatively affect child well-being in several ways, including that “adolescents living outside two-biological-parent married families tend to exhibit more behavioral and emotional problems” and are “significantly less engaged in school.”
  • A study published in the February 2007 issue of the Journal of Population Economics notes: “There is longstanding evidence that youth raised by single parents are more likely to perform poorly in school and partake in ‘deviant’ behaviors such as smoking, sex, substance use, and crime.  However, there is not widespread agreement as to whether the timing of the marital disruption differentially impacts youth outcomes.”  After undertaking their research, the authors concluded that an additional five years spent with the biological father significantly lowers a youth’s likelihood of engaging in the named behaviors and that in general, “the longer the father remains in the household, the ‘better off’ the youth is.

The evidence is clear. Fathers are extremely important figures in the lives of their children and their influence cannot be underestimated.

Family Spectrum Magazine, Open Forum pg 24, June 2010 omahapublication.com

So lets encourage our dad’s today, to be the men that lead country to be its best everyday, and that leads by example how to live a life not solely for themselves but for the betterment of others.  Let us also encourage those that gave up their right to be a father or those that want to become fathers, to start becoming a part of the kids lives that they brought into this world, or for those not yet with kids to incorporate a part of their lives with children.  Fathers are a big part of a kids life, just like mothers, to help bring them up to be responsible adults.

Thank you dad!

Less of me, more of you

Posted in Culture, following Jesus, God with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 20, 2010 by rylanreed

Shane and Shane has a song entitled The Answer.  It speaks to what I want my heart wants to say, but what I have not been living for lately.  You can listen to the song here.

I’ve tried more of me and I’ve come up dry

trading You for things, things that go away

my happiness is found in less of me and more of You

my happiness is found in less of me and more of You

i have found the answer is to love You and be loved by You alone

alright! alright! alright!

You crucify me and the world to me and i will only boast in You

alright! alright! alright!

O’ so satisfied at the thought of You

growing up in me covering everything

my happiness is found in less of me and more of You

my happiness is found in less of me and more of You

i have found the answer is to love You and be loved by You alone

You crucify me and the world to me and i will only boast in You

alright! alright! alright!

You are, You are (loved by me)

You are, You are (You’re loved by me)

So many times I try to do things on my own, and fall short of anything that I want to accomplish.  I look to myself and not to Jesus, who is always there to help when you seek His face and for His glory.  I know what I should do and it is what I want to do, but so many times I let my thoughts and the thoughts of Satan come into my mind and heart. They tell me to go my own way, making it seem to be the easier and quicker way of doing things.  This is totally false and a complete lie, and one that Satan finds full enjoyment; when God’s children stray and go their own way.  I still have hope and there is hope for you as well, those that feel the same as I do, because of the story of The Prodigal Son.  God will and does take us back, when we repent and acknowledge that we need Him more than anything else.

I know I need Him to help me through this life, cause trying by myself has not gotten me far at all, maybe a little bit lower in the ground.  He can and will pick me up and carry me to a place that will allow me to go on with life as I follow Him to life ever-after.

Where a father is needed

Posted in Culture with tags , , , , , , , , on June 21, 2010 by rylanreed

For all you fathers out there, Happy post Father’s Day.  Thank you for raising your children, bringing them up to be ready for the challenges this world brings and giving them a chance to grow themselves.

I found this article in the family spectrum magazine, one of the Omaha publications.  This information is not really on the brighter side of things, but it is important for everyone to know about.

Celebrating Fatherhood: An important Missing Link — Fathers are Necessary to the Healthy Development of Children.

Anthony has been raised by a  loving mother and other family members for the past 11 years, but there is a huge hole in his heart… his missing father.  …  Research shows that a loving and nurturing father improves outcomes for children, families and communities, and fathers who live with their children are more likely to have a close, enduring relationship with their children.  Children with involved, loving fathers are significantly more likely to do well in school, have healthy self-esteem, exhibit empathy and pro-social behavior, and avoid high-risk behaviors including drug use, truancy, and criminal activity. The growing absence of fathers in children’s lives has emerged as one of our nation’s greatest social problems, resulting in lost opportunities for children and a financial burden to society.

American children are in crisis and families are in need of assistance due to father absence. Statistics consistently point out that children who grow up without their fathers are more likely to be poor, to use drugs, to experience educational, health, emotional and behavioral problems, to be victims of child abuse, and to engage in criminal behavior than their peers who live with their married, biological (or adoptive) parents.  {RESEARCH: About 75% of children raised in father-absent homes will experience poverty before they reach age 11, compared to only 20% of kids in two parent families.}  The truth is this: Children need committed fathers as much as they need their mothers.

Now I don’t know where everyone is coming from, it just might be the situation that a father can not be around his children or something else has happened, but these kind of situation are very serious and detrimental not only to the kids but also for the country as a whole.  Thanks to the Fathers that have stayed committed to the children, be biological or adoptive, and committed to their wives (or cooperative) with them. 

Continue reading

His Remembrance

Posted in books, following Jesus, God with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on September 23, 2009 by rylanreed

“And I will remember My covenant” Genesis 9:15

Mark the form of the promise. God does not say, “And when ye shall look upon the bow, and ye shall remember my covenant, then I will not destroy the earth,” but it is gloriously put, not upon our memory, which is fickle and frail, but upon God’s memory, which is infinite and immutable. “The bow shall be in the cloud; and I will look upon it, that I may remember the everlasting covenant.” Oh! it is not my remembering God, it is God’s remembering me which is the ground of my safety; it is not my laying hold of his covenant, but his covenant’s laying hold on me. Glory be to God! the whole of the bulwarks of salvation are secured by divine power, and even the minor towers, which we may imagine might have been left to man, are guarded by almighty strength. Even the remembrance of the covenant is not left to our memories, for we might forget, but our Lord cannot forget the saints whom he has graven on the palms of his hands. It is with us as with Israel in Egypt; the blood was upon the lintel and the two side-posts, but the Lord did not say, “When you see the blood I will pass over you,” but “When I see the blood I will pass over you.” My looking to Jesus brings me joy and peace, but it is God’s looking to Jesus which secures my salvation and that of all his elect, since it is impossible for our God to look at Christ, our bleeding Surety, and then to be angry with us for sins already punished in him. No, it is not left with us even to be saved by remembering the covenant. There is no linsey-wolsey here—not a single thread of the creature mars the fabric. It is not of man, neither by man, but of the Lord alone. We should remember the covenant, and we shall do it, through divine grace; but the hinge of our safety does not hang there—it is God’s remembering us, not our remembering him; and hence the covenant is an everlasting covenant. C.H. Spurgeon Morning and Evening, Evening August 13

What a great thing to grasp, that we don’t have to remember all the time or try and remind God of what He told us with the convent of old.  He remembers and will always remember, not letting one of His children out of His sight and out of His controlling, comforting hands.  We don’t have to do anything, and we didn’t DO anything to deserve this, since us and this world is all for the glory of God and His covenant allows us to be apart of His plan for world redemption.

Shout to Him pt. 1

Posted in books, following Jesus, God with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 21, 2009 by rylanreed

Exodus 3:9 “Now therefore, behold, the cry of the children of Israel has come to Me, and I have also seen the oppression with which the Egyptians oppress them.”

“are we crying out for God to hear our(and our brethren) plight?  Or do we try and work things out by ourselves and when they go bad then we get mad at Him who could have given us’…the way out.” Unknown Author

When situations come up, do we go to God for our help, or is it more of the fact that we just rely in our self and maybe others as well.  I know I have fallen into the trap of trying to do things on my own, or depending on others to help or comfort me in different situations, but it usually don’t work out to well and I feel incomplete.  Well, God (if I can use an illustration) is the ball that fits exactly into the circle hole of your heart, so snug that when He comes into that place He will never leave it again.  If you turn and look to Him when you need the strength to get through some situation or get wisdom to do something, He is there and willing to help if you just rely in Him.  He has the power and strength to give you, because He is all powerful and all mighty.  This is what Spurgeon says in his Morning and Evening devotionals, July 8 Evening:

“Unto thee will I cry, O Lord my rock; be not silent to me: lest, if thou be silent to me, I become like them that go down into the pit.”  Psalms 28:1

A cry is the natural expression of sorrow, and a suitable utterance when all other modes of appeal fail us; but the cry must be alone directed to the Lord, for to cry to man is to waste our entreaties upon the air. When we consider the readiness of the Lord to hear, and his ability to aid, we shall see good reason for directing all our appeals at once to the God of our salvation. It will be in vain to call to the rocks in the day of judgment, but our Rock attends to our cries.

“Be not silent to me.” Mere formalists may be content without answers to their prayers, but genuine suppliants cannot; they are not satisfied with the results of prayer itself in calming the mind and subduing the will—they must go further, and obtain actual replies from heaven, or they cannot rest; and those replies they long to receive at once; they dread even a little of God’s silence. God’s voice is often so terrible that it shakes the wilderness; but his silence is equally full of awe to an eager suppliant. When God seems to close his ear, we must not therefore close our mouths, but rather cry with more earnestness; for when our note grows shrill with eagerness and grief, he will not long deny us a hearing. What a dreadful case should we be in if the Lord should become forever silent to our prayers? “Lest, if thou be silent to me, I become like them that go down into the pit.” Deprived of the God who answers prayer, we should be in a more pitiable plight than the dead in the grave, and should soon sink to the same level as the lost in hell. We must have answers to prayer: ours is an urgent case of dire necessity; surely the Lord will speak peace to our agitated minds, for he never can find it in his heart to permit his own elect to perish.

Psalm 34:17 The righteous cry out, and the LORD hears, and delivers them out of all their troubles.

In the Furnace

Posted in following Jesus, God with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 9, 2009 by rylanreed

“As sure as God puts His children in the furnace he will be in the furnace with them”  Charles Spurgeon

Daniel Ch.3 talks about Babylon and the Israelites that were captive there, and how Nebuchadnezzar, the King, made an image of gold for everyone to bow down to it.  If someone did not follow the law, they would be thrown into the fiery furnace.  Three Jews that were put into offices of the province; Shadrach, Meshack, and Abednego, did not bow down when everyone else did.  They were brought to the king and asked why they didn’t bow down… 16″ O Nebuchadnezzar, we have no need to answer you in this matter (bowing down). 17 If this be so, (thrown in) our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the burning fiery furnace and he will deliver us out of your hand, O king. 18 But if not, be it know to you, O king, that we will not serve your gods or worship the golden image that you have set up.”

What great faith those three must have had, knowing what the king could do to them, but knowing even more the power of God and what He could do for them at any point in their life.  I am sure there was a slight thought of what might happen and the hardship of the trial that would come, but there was such a bigger sense of God and the awe of His majesty to lead them in defiance of a king that worshiped idols.  If you continue to read the chapter, it states the fury of the king and how he had his soldiers tie the three up with strong rope and heat the furnace 7 times higher than it was ever heated before.  Even some of the guards died throwing the three Jews into the furnace, that’s how hot it had become.   There might be a  thought of what a terrible, painful death for the three Jews, but that is not the case… 24″ Then King Nebuchadnezzar was astonished and rose up in haste. He declared to his counselors, ‘Did we not cast three men bound into the fire?’ They answered and said to the king, ‘True, O king.’ 25He answered and said, ‘But I see four men unbound, walking in the midst of the fire, and they are not hurt; and the appearance of the fourth is like a son of the gods.” It says that the men came out of the fire unscathed and the king fell to the ground worshiping God most high, changing every kind of decree for the people that he reigned over.

So how does any of this pertain to us as Christians?  Yeah its a nice story, but we are probably not going to be thrown into a furnace to die sometime soon.  Trials and tribulations come our way each and everyday, most of the time it feels like we are being thrown into the fire because of the hardships that goes along with the different situations in our lives.  I am sure for all of us, that we at times feel like God is no where in sight during those hard times and that He is even doing it just punish us for the things that we have done against Him.  I know I fall into that thinking at times, but would disagree with that in truth, and the Bible does so as well.

James 1:2-4 “Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, 3for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness. 4And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.”

James 1:12-13 “Blessed is the man who remains steadfast under trial, for when he has stood the test he will receive the crown of life, which God has promised to those who love him. 13Let no one say when he is tempted, ‘I am being tempted by God,’ for God cannot be tempted with evil, and he himself tempts no one.”

I Corinthians 10:13 “No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation He will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it.”

Let these few verses encourage you to cling to God during hard times, knowing that He is always there and wanting to help in a way that will increase your faith and build your holiness, as well as  glorifying Him.  Blessed be all things from God!

Everybody wants to go to Heaven

Posted in following Jesus, God, Music with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 25, 2009 by rylanreed

The first time I heard this song, it made me really sad, because Kenny totally has the wrong view point on Heaven and how to get there.  I am sure everyone “wants to go to heaven” but not everyone is going to be there.  You will definitely see a lot less people in Heaven than what you might think will be up there, and even with how many people call themselves Christians, not all will be up with Christ when He calls those that are His children home.  I have copied Kenny’s lyrics on here to show you just how incorrect it really is…

Everybody Wants To Go To Heaven – Kenny Chesney

Preacher told me last Sunday mornin’ — Son, you better start livin’ right — You need to quit the women and whiskey — And carrying on all night — Don’t you wanna hear him call your name — When you’re standin’ at the pearly gates — I told the preacher, “Yes I do” — But I hope they don’t call today — I ain’t ready

Everybody wants to go to heaven — Have a mansion high above the clouds — Everybody want to go to heaven — But nobody want to go now

Said preacher maybe you didn’t see me — Throw an extra twenty in the plate — There’s one for everything I did last night — And one to get me through today — Here’s a ten to help you remember — Next time you got the good Lord’s ear — Say I’m comin’ but there ain’t no hurry — I’m havin’ fun down here

Don’t you know that — Everybody wants to go to heaven — Get their wings and fly around — Everybody want to go to heaven — But nobody want to go now

Someday I want to see those streets of gold in my halo — But I wouldn’t mind waiting at least a hundred years or so

Everybody wanna go to heaven — It beats the other place there ain’t no doubt

Everybody wanna go to heaven — But nobody wanna go now — Everybody wanna go to heaven — Hallelujah, let me hear you shout — Everybody wanna go to heaven — But nobody wanna go now — I think I speak for the crowd — But nobody wanna go now

Yeahhh….

Everybody wanna go to heaven — Get their wings and fly around — Everybody want to go to heaven — But nobody want to go now

This verse is the one that troubles me the most.  “Said preacher maybe you didn’t see me — Throw an extra twenty in the plate — There’s one for everything I did last night — And one to get me through today — Here’s a ten to help you remember — Next time you got the good Lord’s ear — Say I’m comin’ but there ain’t no hurry — I’m havin’ fun down here” Nothing you do will get you into heaven, none of your good works or anything like that.  Its not even a part your action of accepting Christ into you life (but that is a whole other topic that we could spend much time on).  It definitely doesn’t matter how much you put into the offering plate, cause all the money in the world is God’s anyways.  Also, God choose the time, place and situation in which people will be taken from this earth (which mean death) and either sent to Heaven or Hell (which is a real place, to all you who think not).

I don’t want this to be all bad news, God is calling His children to Him and to heaven when the time comes.  All you get to do, (its a get to, not a have to) is seek hard after Christ and He will do the rest.  No one’s perfect, we all know that, and God is not calling us to be perfect, but for us to allow Christ to rule in our lives and for us to live for Him.