Ten Opportunities to Talk to Your Child About God in Everyday Life

10 Opportunities to Talk to Your Child About God in Everyday Life:

1. When they see something they love in nature. || God created everything.

2. When they get ready to eat a meal. || Give thanks to God for all he provides.

3. When they show off a skill, gift, or ability. || God gives us abilities to glorify and worship Him.

4. When they get hurt or feel afraid. || God is always with us, He is our refuge and strength.

5. When they disobey. || Sin severs our relationship with God, but He offers forgiveness in His son, Jesus.

6. When they see you reading the bible or praying. || God wants us to spend time talking to and listening to Him through His word.

7. When they hurt other children. || God created everyone in His image and He loves that person. He wants us to be kind to them.

8. When they share or show generosity. || God loves a cheerful giver.

9. When they show self-control instead of selfishness. || God helped you do what is right and put others before yourself. Thank you, God!

10. When they are ready for bed. || God loves you. He is always ready to hear your prayers. 

For more like this, listen to Episode 27 | Intentional Motherhood: It's the Little Things and Episode 29 | Using Life-Giving Words With Our Children

Risen Motherhood Guest Interviews

Risen Motherhood Guest Interviews

Over the past year and a half of the show, we've been blessed to be able to invite a handful of wise people on the show to share their experience and wisdom with our listeners. From miscarriage and infertility, to special needs and PPD, to Biblical literacy and prayer, all of our guests have shared a wealth of helpful information for moms in many walks of life. If you've missed an interview, check out the list below to see who we've featured, and of course, we also find ourselves re-listening to many of the interviews as the truths shared are worth hearing over and over again. 

Six Tips For Getting In God's Word As A Young Mom

Six Tips For Getting In God's Word As A Young Mom

In high school and college I spent a lot of time in scripture, but as I started working, got married and had really little littles, I wasn't spending a lot of time in the Bible. I hunted and pecked here and there, did a few inductive Bible Studies – my time and depth ebbed and flowed depending on what I was involved in and who was holding me accountable.

And with the lack of time, I felt some of my passion for God dry up. If you asked me, I would have told you I wanted a more passionate relationship with the Lord, but I'd tell you that for one reason or another I was just kinda going through a dry spell. And if I were honest with you – if I were honest with myself – I would have told you that I believed God was the distant one, not me.

Five Ways To Involve Your Young Children In Hospitality

Five ways to involve your young children in hospitality:

1. Have them help clean and prepare for guests. Set the table, run a handheld vacuum, decorate place cards. 
2. Let them help in deciding the menu and preparing the food. Is there a simple desert or side that you can work with them the day before on? 
3. Have them greet guests at the door. Coach them ahead of time on what to say. Tell them they can offer guests a "hug, handshake or highfive!" Allow them show guest where they can put their boots or coat. 
4. During and after the meal, help them to "see needs and meet them." This usually means mom or dad "sees" the need and helps the child in meeting it - getting new napkins, handing someone a drink, finding an age appropriate toy for the youngest of guests.
5. Teach them to walk their guests to the door, thank them for coming and help them find their shoes/coats.

My children are two and four (next month), and both of them are capable of most of these things - admittedly - with lots of help from mom and dad. (But isn't that like everything in parenting?) We find the main key is in communication. Prepare your child beforehand for what you expect and how they can love the guests that come to your doorstep. Gently remind them of their responsibilities as the evening goes on. Talk about the why to point them to the gospel: We want to bless people through the blessings God has given us (skills, abilities, material things). Everything was given to us by God. We serve because Jesus first served us, etc. (Lots more "reasons" on this week's show!) Most children that are really young still find this exciting and fun – not dutiful – so it's a great chance to capitalize on their willing attitudes.

Hospitality in the little years does take extra work, but if we're thoughtful and plan ahead, we can use it as a wonderful teaching tool for our children to learn to love others more than themselves and show people the light of Christ.

For more about hospitality, listen to Episode 55 | Hospitality in the Little Years and Episode 43 | Serving Others Right Where You're At

Why Every Young Mom Should Make Time for Ministry

Why Every Young Mom Should Make Time for Ministry

In these little years, it can be easy to convince myself it's not practical to serve outside my home. I've got two under three that have only one incredibly loud vocal setting and their favorite hobby is running in circles while holding breakable items.

But the truth is, I can't serve inside my home without serving outside my home. What I mean is, a vital part of raising my children to know and love the Lord is showing them that loving God means loving others. So while you likely won't find us at a soup kitchen, you will find us doing seemingly small things in the home that matter outside of it.

Why You Don't Have To Love Your Postpartum Body

Why You Don't Have To Love Your Postpartum Body

Gaining and losing nearly 140 lbs. in the span of four years, well, that'll do a number on your body. 

After every baby, at about four weeks post-partum, I've looked longly at my pre-baby jeans and wondered why I ever thought I wasn't skinny enough. I looked at the width of the leg opening, the number on the tag and I prayed that, 1) someday I'd fit into them again, and 2) if I do, that I'd actually appreciate it and love my body for it.

Why Nurturing Your Infant Matters For Eternity

Why Nurturing Your Infant Matters For Eternity

It might seem like what you're doing isn't THAT big of a deal. It might feel like ANYONE can change diapers or give bottles or rock a baby. And yes, to some extent, that's true. But you are doing so much more than JUST meeting physical needs.

When you choose to love an infant well: singing that quiet song, using that dorky voice, smiling in that silly way, reading that repetitive book, or feeding that messy snack - you are displaying God's love.

Seven Principles To Keep In Mind When You Don't Know How To Discipline

Seven Principles To Keep In Mind When You Don't Know How To Discipline

God has given each parent the task of loving their children by instructing, training and disciplining them - but all of us feel clueless about this task from time to time. Here are seven principles to keep in mind when you don't know how to handle a discipline issue:

1. Act. Learn. Adapt. Most of the time, you just need to try the things you already know and see how they work. If it's going terribly, learn from it and try something new. Your first parenting strategy isn't your last parenting strategy.

2. Ask Someone: Sit down with a godly and experienced mom and ask her for a "Training and "Correction 101."

3. Pray: When you don't know how to handle it practically, pray over your child, that God would calm their heart, give them a desire to submit to authority and give you wisdom in the situation.

4. Read scripture and do what it says: There are lots of arrows in the Bible to point us in parenting. Sometimes, we don't like those arrows because they require us to sacrifice what we want to do, and take hard work and planning. Sometimes, when we're not sure how to discipline our child it's not because we literally don't know what's right, it's because we don't want to obey scripture.

5. Pay attention to your husband's leading: Oftentimes, your husband will see things that you don't and can see things more objectively. As hard as it is, listen to him when it comes to behavior issues and consider adopting his approaches.

6. Remove distractions: Sometimes confusion about discipline stems from letting other priorities cloud our calling. We haven't been consistent, or we've been overcommitted, or just lazy. Here, it's not that you need better parenting strategies, but need to repent to God and your children - making discipline a priority again.

7. Remember the goal and keep going: Being a faithful and godly parent is something that reaps rewards. We aren't promised that our children will become Christians, but there is treasure stored up in heaven for parents who faithfully raise their children in the way of the Lord. It isn't a perfect input = output relationship, But the bible shows that good fruit can result from raising our children well.

* A version of this post first appeared on Emily Jensen Writes Blog January 2015 // For more on gospel-centered discipline, listen to Episode 57 | How Discipline Helps Us Communicate the Gospel.

Parent With Prayer

Parent With Prayer

I'd pretty much exhausted all of my usual strategies for discipline when I came to my husband and said, "I'm just out of ideas for how to handle this. What should I do?"

(I was listening intently for a magic bullet technique that I hadn't thought of yet. I REALLY wanted to hear a 1-2-3 solution to the complex heart attitudes of our pre-schooler.)

"Well, have you tried praying with him? Just stay calm, correct him, and ask God to help. Let him see that you are both dependent on the Lord for a heart change."

When Momma Loves the Bible, Her Children Notice

When Momma Loves the Bible, Her Children Notice

"Mom, are you doing bible study now? Can I come! I want to get my bible study out!"

Little pajama feet pitter-patter up the stairs into the kitchen to grab their nearly-dried out container full of markers and almost-full notebooks. They find their small bibles, and negotiate whose name is on the front, double-checking by investigating the types of stickers they find inside the cover ("Oh, Thomas the train - that's mine!!"). They spread their materials out beside me, climbing onto stools at the kitchen island. 

Theology is for Moms of Little Ones, Too

Theology is for Moms of Little Ones, Too

With four young children, a moment of quiet or predictable consistency is hard to come by. Even with my best efforts to be organized and intentional, it’s still difficult to stay engaged in regular bible study, to disciple women, to fellowship regularly with other believers, or to serve in ways that pull me out of my home. The desire is there, but so are the dirty diapers, the naptime routines, the laundry piles, and the mundane things that keep our family going.

All the distractions, setbacks, and challenges occasionally leave me wondering if theological growth just isn’t possible for a woman in the season of young children. I’ve wondered if I should just shrug at my inconsistent quiet times, and parched prayer life. I’ve contemplated sitting out of the women’s bible study or leaving our calendar free of hospitable meals because it’s just too hard.

So for every mom of little ones who is longing to see her relationship with God as bigger than the elusive “quiet time”, this list is for you.

Loud, Chaotic Quiet Times

Loud, Chaotic Quiet Times

When it comes to "quiet time" with God, I often want the ideal.

I want the whole house to be silent so I can have a long string of uninterrupted thoughts. I want my coffee fresh and hot. I want to sit in my favorite chair with a snuggly blanket. I want my journal with a special pen & a well-marked bible. I tend to think that if all these criteria are met, THEN I will have a full & fruitful relationship with God.