You’re Not “Stuck” at Home. You’re Having the Time of Your Life, Homeschooling, That is!

Hello and welcome to all parents who are suddenly at home with their kids.  As a veteran homeschooler I have some thoughts, tips and downright excellent ideas for you.

  1.  Begin every day with “The P.J.’s of Power – a psalm, a proverb, Paul’s wisdom from something in the New Testament, and Prayer, and Praise, and then some of Jesus’ words.  If the kids are readers and awake (this is a lovely time for all of you to catch up on sleep by the way), instruct them to do the same, take notes, and let it all be done in P.J.’s!
  2. Make this something they truly enjoy, perhaps all around the table first thing, along with hot chocolate, and begin teaching table manners and conversation arts at the table.  Best of all, you are teaching them to love and enjoy God!
  3. Have all hands on deck for meals.  Rotate assignments for who is helping cook, setting the table, doing the dishes, sweeping the floors afterward, etc.
  4. Speaking of rotating assignments, one of my best ever ideas was my COD idea – Child of the Day.  It began first with who was going to pray at meals because when they all chimed in the food got cold before they finished.  They prayed for Grandpa’s cows, and the neighbor’s sick dog, and anything else they could think of.  So, it was Benjamin on Mondays, Hannah on Tuesdays, Rebekah Wednesdays, and Seth Thursdays.  Friday was my day and John got Saturdays and Sundays.
  5. Let things evolve, according to the needs of your family.  The COD evolved so that chores were added, along with privileges, per child, per day.  A favorite part of being the COD was getting to pick the bedtime story.
  6. Make the bedtime story non-negotiable, and make it a story that even the parents enjoy reading.  It’s a good time, if you’re in a cold climate, for a cup of warm milk (we used the neighbors’ goat milk gifts this way) with honey, which is relaxing and delicious (add cinnamon, nutmeg, and vanilla if you like).
  7. Begin developing and promoting the idea of personal libraries, as you read books like Frog and Toad, Hattie Rabbit, Barnyard Dance, Goodnight Gorilla, and Thomas the Tank Engine.  Those are just some that still make me smile as I recall taking walks with thermoses of tea and a few cookies (which the kids LOVE helping to make).  If the kids are older choose Little House books, such as The Long Winter.  If you don’t have this book, order it!  It’s .99 plus shipping, and all of us living today should read about those who came before us, who built this country through hardship and hunger such as we’ve never experienced.
  8. Make memories every day.  We have a favorite memory of taking the red wagon, the two younger kids riding with the picnic basket and quilt, picking blackberries along the side of the road in rural Arkansas, and settling in the shade to read Timothy Tattercoat.  Books inspire.  This book actually planted the seed in our kids’ minds to one day live in Colorado, which is the setting for Timothy Tattercoat. As the kids grew they enjoyed Louis L’Amour books about miners in Colorado – be on the lookout for books and outings (we know all the best museums wherever we’ve been) that make learning History fun and fascinating and unforgettable!
  9. It’s OK to take all day.  Tea parties all the time, any time, by any name are a great use of an entire day.  Because after all, the best part of this whole home-with-the-kids thing is becoming truly acquainted with your children.  This is done quite effortlessly and beautifully over tea.  We had History teas, where we discussed whatever anyone wanted to discuss from History, which can lead all kinds of marvelous directions; there were geography teas (look at maps and talk about countries).  “Look, there’s France – what do know about France?”  Hmm, your humming mind ponders, shall we do a unit study on France?  Google “homeschool unit study ideas” and remember to tailor these ideas to suit yourself!
  10. “Maybe,” you might ponder, “We should do a unit study on our state, and do a field trip approach, right in our own backyards.  What are the herbs coming up this spring, and how can we use them?  Let’s make a plan to gather rosehips, mint, and whatever else will work, and make the best ever herbal tea.  Maybe we’ll learn a bit about home remedies.”
  11. Pray for anointing as a parent, and you will soon know that you are uniquely qualified to teach your children, and you will learn right along with them.  In my case, I believe I learned more than anyone.
  12. Have “Dreaming Times.”  When our four kids were small I had a great need for an hour of absolute peace and quiet in the afternoons.  I would go into my room with a book (John and I always taught by example that reading is a treat), and say, “Don’t say my name for one hour.  Play alone and dream and we’ll do something wonderful when we’re done.”  They would very quietly sneak into each other’s bedrooms and play, but they knew I meant business about an hour of peace and quiet.  Now be prepared to talk about, and respect, their dreams.  And your own!
  13. Have a plan, but be ready to switch gears.  If after Dream Time you meant to go grocery shopping, but they’ve had a dream of building a fort and starting a “John Wayne Club” (yes, this was a thing), the groceries can wait.  Building and creating should always trump spending money.  This is where you can get creative with what’s in the pantry, and play happy music to accompany the beautiful sounds of children at play.  Let them see and hear you happy, as you sing and dance.
  14. Teach them good personal and homekeeping habits.  They can make their beds each morning and brush their teeth, before the “privileges” of outside play, or getting to learn something new about a Founding Father, or mixing and using their own finger paints, etc.  They can brush their teeth and pick up the living room (baskets for everything work well) before they get their bedtime story.
  15. You are the fearless leader, and part of that is meaning business and making House Rules.  These rules are for your sanity, and to make your children popular with others.  Ours were things like NO RUNNING IN THE HOUSE, NO YELLING AND SCREAMING IN THE HOUSE, RESPECT OTHERS’ PROPERTY, RESPECT OTHERS. PERIOD.  Then there was a written and publicly posted list of table manners:  No phone answering during meals, no gross or negative conversation subjects during meals, etc.
  16. Read and re-read daily scriptures on the Tongue from Proverbs, and let your kids see you forget the scriptures entirely, mess up, repent both to God and to them.  This practicing of what you preach, learning and growing as you go, will be a marvelous example, and will draw their hearts to you, and to God.  This will also help your marriage flourish, which is the very kindest thing you can do for your kids – the most important education you can give them (please pardon me for causing you pain if you’re a single parent – these rules still apply, and I wish I’d known them when I was a single parent!).
  17. Consider the power of your example as you make the most of this unexpected situation, as you show them love by sacrificing your normal routine and getting to truly know your child, and yourself.  Remember that your child is unique in all the world, indeed in all the history of the world, and that you have been given the gift of unexpected time together.  To love.
  18. Be sure they know that you see this time with them, this family time, as a marvelous treat, a wonderful blessing.  Tell them this.
  19. Don’t try to cram too much into your days.  Seek a lifestyle of His unforced rhythms of grace.
  20. Keep it simple, and remember, “A little child will lead you.”  But you must lead first.  And you must first be led.  By Him.  Amen.

Just say “NOOOOOOOOO!!!!” to Corona Craziness. Period. Because FEAR IS NOT YOUR FRIEND.

There were no snacks or coffee samples at a certain store in Fort Collins.  I was told very dramatically, and with a certain disapproval, “We have shut down all sample stations nationwide.”   There were no smiles, none of the usual happy shoppers.  John and I got our milk, cream, chocolate and agreed, “Let’s get outta here.”  Then the checker didn’t want me touching the sack or my own groceries.  Sigh.

On to The Cupboard, a luxury kitchen store where it was nice, pleasant and quiet (they don’t sell toilet paper or bleach).  We stayed a while, gathering our courage to try again for groceries, this time at a  country store where we hoped to find a more seasoned and hopefully less intense group of shoppers than those at our first grocery stop.

Focus on the word “group” – the store was running over at the seams.  We got a few things and again agreed, “Let’s get outta here.”  Still, it was refreshing when the young lady at the in-store bank said, ‘I’m going home, I’m turning off my phone and the TV.  I’m sick of this Corona Crap.  It’s all Fake News, anyway.”

So nice to find bits of sanity amid madness.  While so many people seem to be embracing a panic over what is actually not that different than the flu bugs we faced last year and the year before, and the year before . . . , there are plenty of us who are sitting and watching, bemused and amazed.  As one young man said to us, “It’s like the stupidest, cheesiest apocolypse story ever, only stupider and cheesier.”

Exactly.  But no editor would buy this story.  “No way,” the editor would say, “would people act this crazy over this threat.  It’s the flu.  Something we dread, something we definitely want to avoid, even something dangerous.  But still, at the end of the day it’s the flu.”

So, yes, let’s all go home and stay inside and hide.  Not from the flu, but from the tangible, dark, mucky and almost overwhelming presence of fear.  “For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power, and love, and a sound mind” – II Timothy 1:7.

This Spirit of Fear has definitely precluded power and a sound mind in many.  Let us not join them. Rather, let us pray a binding of the Spirit of Fear, and call on God’s promise to bind in heaven what we bind on earth – Matthew 16:19 and 18:18.  Amen.

P.S.  Please consider joining me in another prayer – that He turns what the enemy intends for evil, to good.  Also, join me and so many others in reading Psalm 91 aloud day in and day out.

A Valentine’s Day Thought or Two

I always get a card for John that makes me cry – it’s the one that reminds me what’s in my heart, way deep under the crud that’s not real, and not really me.

This year, I vow, I will speak much more often like that card.  “A smart girl,” I reason, “should be able to do this.”

So, that thing that I’ve spoken (groused, grumbled, murmured) so often about, and thereby made it a real thing, needs to just go away.  Because experience teaches me that until I put it away, and give it to God entirely, it’s here to stay.  I’m talking about a little thing, because so much of the time it really is the little stuff.

It’s the little bad stuff crowding out the REALLY BIG good stuff.  In my case, it’s like packing my wicker picnic basket with fried chicken, devilled eggs, potato salad, artichoke dip with radishes and celery sticks, plus nut-filled brownies, thermoses of both cold milk and hot coffee, a bottle of Moscato, and taking it all to the river with my lover, and then . . .  letting one mosquito spoil the day.

SMASH THE MOSQUITO!!!!  SAY “NOT JUST ‘NO’, BUT HELL, NO!!!”

How again, does a smart girl smash her mosquitoes?  With her tongue.  I read Proverbs every day, and I read the tongue scriptures out loud, so my smart self can HEAR and BELIEVE and RECEIVE them.  Amen!

Like so:  Proverbs 6:2 – You are snared by the words of your mouth, you are taken by the words of your mouth (not anymore!!!!); 8:9 – All the words of my mouth are with righteousness; Nothing crooked or perverse is in them; 10:19 – In the multitude of words sin is not lacking; 12:18 – There is one who speaks like the piercings of a sword, but the tongue of the wise promotes health; 13:3 – He who guards his mouth preserves his life (and marriage!), but he who opens wide his lips shall have destruction; 15:1 – A soft answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger; 15:28 – The heart of the righteous studies how to answer, but the mouth of the wicked pours forth evil; 16:21 (especially for parenting) The wise in heart will be called prudent, and sweetness of the lips increases learning; 17:18 (perhaps my favorite) Pleasant words are like a honeycomb, sweetness to the soul and health to the bones.

I vehemently exhort you to read Proverbs 17 and 18 for yourself, and as I have, highlight each tongue scripture, and then put a big black “T” next to it.  Then in Proverbs 20 we find that “any fool can start a quarrel (verse 3), and let us not forget the squirm-inducing verses 9 and 19 in Chapter 21:  Better to dwell in a corner of a housetop, than in a house shared with a contentious woman; and, Better to dwell in the wilderness than with a contentious and angry woman.

If that “angry woman” describes you (I think at times it describes all of us), get with God and get free.  “Free indeed” freedom is one of the many treasures Jesus purchased for us on the Cross. (you might begin with singing a little ditty such as, “I’m so free cause it SO aint all about me!”).

Oh, and Happy, Happy, Happy Valentine’s Day.  It’s yours for the saying.

The Homefront Radio Show Wednesday, December 11 with Bronia Olivas Speaking On Tongues

I have a preliminary intro to Wednesday’s Homefront Show, and I’m sharing it here and now, but making no promises.  Because it seems that more I prepare for and nail down the Show just exactly how I think it should go, the more apt the Holy Spirit is to say, “No, don’t say that, say this.”  The very subject about which I’m most self-satisifed and sure my listeners will LOVE, is the one that at the last minute seems trite, boring and/or irrelevant.

So, again, here’s a possible line-up of the show coming up at 8:00 Mountain time (9:00 Central) Wednesday morning, December 11:

Hello and thank you for joining me today on the Homefront Show, where among many other excellent subjects, we’re going to talk about setting the tone for your home, about doing away with the pie sliver mentality –  we’re going to STOP with the lack thinking.  Enough with not enough! 

Rather than thinking about what we want and need we’re going to think about what we have and what we can share.  It is TIME  to stop sharing our miserliness and our misery (root word miser and it is a godless word), and start being a blessing to ourselves and others as well, especially those living in our houses.  We’re going from Households of Hate (I hate myself and I hate my life) to Households of Faith.  We’ve got some Faith ABC’s – Basics that any and all of us can get, today on the HFS.

But before we do anything else, let me ask this question:  Do I have a listener considering abortion?  I have been dreaming about babies, and about a young woman considering abortion.  So I want to ask this question, and tell you to stay with me – we’re going to talk about this.  And if you have an abortion in your past, and you’re still under that cloud, we’re going to talk about that as well (short, sweet and to the point).  Because there is one way, and one way only, to deal with that kind of cloud, that kind of weight.  So whatever your weight, your regret, your crippling past issue or issues (they seem to travel in packs) whatever. . . have I got a deal for you today on the HFS.

The subject of giving is on the roster as well.  And . . . the Power of Total Immersion.  And . . . Bronia.  Bronia Olivas – isn’t that a lovely name?  It’s for a lovely person, who will be talking about today’s controversial subject, and hopefully take us from controversy to revelation  (Bronia will do her part, you’ll have to choose whether to respond in stubbornness or faith)  – that’s what I call a battle, at least it is for me.

We were created for battle, and we need to wake up in the morning and gear up.  It is absolutely ridiculous for Christians to be worrying about what the devil’s up to. It is downright sin.  So we’re going to talk about the downright sin of worry today, and about the stupidity of disobeying our commanding officer’s commandments!

Opinions are also open for discussion today.  Everyone has an opinion, and very often we find no one is really interested in ours.  We think our opinions are soooo interesting, so important, but I don’t see much in the Bible about the  importance of my opinion.  There is no Book of Beverly.  We especially have opinons about other people.  So, speaking of other people, contact someone who needs a bit of revelation and maybe rerouting for their day, for their thinking, and get them to get with us today on the HFS.

I want to begin the Show with the opinion thing.  I read a devotion about the difference between going to Jesus and going to the telephone with opinions, and you can guess which one gives you the more harmonious, more victorious outcome:

LIMITLESS LOVE DEVOTION, December 8, 2019

(So there, Dear Potential Blessed Listener, is your list of reasons to tune in to https://1360khnc.com/ Wednesday, December 11, at 8:00 am Mountain Time.) 

And Thanks!

Your Spiritual Authority Can Kiss My Sweet Patooty!

My beloved friend and several of her friends meet weekly and walk the streets of their town praying for the city, the businesses, and the people of the city.  They pray prosperity, freedom, healing – blessing.

I’ve known my friend for 25 years and blessing is all she is, it’s who she is.  So, when the church “leadership” told the group they can no longer do this (don’t want to offend anyone, blah, blah, blah), she was grieved to the bottom of her very dear heart.

She could hardly talk for crying as she told me about it.  “They’re so deceived.  They’ve built a kingdom and they’re losing The Kingdom.”

How often it happens.  A young whippersnapper gets a piece of paper from a Bible College and now he has “spiritual authority.”  What, I wonder, is a more  sure and certain indicator that Satan is at work than when people start trying to control other people?  

I know what.  It’s when people act like sheeple and say, “Oh, OK then.  I know we were led by the Holy Spirit to do this.  I know we’re blessing people.  But since you, Oh Great and Mighty Pastor Person, say we must not pray, we won’t pray,.  After all, spiritual authority and all . . . .”

Not my friend and her buds.  They, unlike their “leaders” will not be destroyed for a lack of knowledge (See Hosea 4:6).  They know what Jesus taught about prayer, and what both the Old and New Testaments teach about prayer.  They will not answer evil orders with the evil of fear and cowardice.

Daniel 3:18 tells of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego’s response to evil orders:  “But if not, let it be known to you, O king, that we do not serve your gods, nor will we worship the gold image which you have set up.”

Wolves in sheep’s clothing, folks.  Beware.  “But there were also false prophets among the people, even as there will be false teachers among you, who will secretly bring in destructive heresies, even denying the Lord who bought them, and bring on themselves swift destruction.  And many will follow their destructive ways, because of whom the way of truth will be blasphemed.” – II Peter 2:1-2
And remember Joshua 24:15 :  ““And if it seems evil to you to serve the LORD, choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods which your fathers served that were on the other side of the River, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you dwell. But as for me and my house, we will serve the LORD.”
So there.
By the way, John Parker will be teaching on the getting of knowledge, the kind that will save us from this kind of deception, next Wednesday, November 6, at 8:00 am on The Homefront Show.  
Join us at 1360 am – http://1360khnc.com/ and please tell a friend Thanks so much.
P.S.  John and I just prayed for this church, that they be free from the root cause of the need to control –  FEAR.  Amen and amen.  So let it be so.

Fasting, My Dear, is About Much More Than Weight Loss!

The real power comes after the fast – the fast is preparation for BIG battles.

little girl praying

 

I had decided to simply, “Let it soak,” regarding an ongoing issue in my life.  And by “issue” don’t we so often mean a relationship issue?  Two people in my life were burrs under my saddle, and unlike most people, I am not willing to go through life with burrs under my saddle.

But like any horse, in my own strength I could not reach under that saddle and get that burr loose.

So, I decided to fast about it, pray about it, and keep soaking these people and myself in God’s love, which I am told on GOOD authority, never fails.

Well, I soaked them for seven days in the fast (praying for them day and night), and then two days later the burrs really stuck deep, as Satan was trying extra hard to stay where he was.

It was time to take those stained clothes out of the soaking pan and put them in the washer, agitator on on high speed!  I gave my opinion to one of these individuals, and boy did the agitator agitate.  Not fun.

I began to pray (in tongues, which is the very best and most indispensable tool for really sticky burrs, and if this is a burr under your saddle, see for yourself what Paul has to say about tongues).  Suddenly the Holy Spirit took over my prayers and I was The Somebody, as in Somebody has to take it to the heart.

In the third Hobbit movie, Thorin took his best warriors and climbed the mountain right into the enemy command center.   Enough was enough.  He had to be that Somebody who took it to the heart.  He had to act like the King and Dragonslayer he was born and called to be.

We are born, born again, to be Kings, to take Jesus to the heart of evil.  We are not to be Craven Cowards (see Hannah Hurnard’s Hinds Feet on High Places) and go licking our wounds each time we’re scratched.  We  are to decide once and for all, that ENOUGH IS ENOUGH.

Fasting and praying, reading the Word, and listening to faith-filled preaching for seven days, put me in that place of power, strength, and unstoppable, bulldog, enough-is-enough FAITH to take it to the heart of the issue.

The heart of the issue was spiritual.  Actually, as I prayed and did  all-or-nothing spiritual warfare  (the demons could have heard and sensed me in the next county), the Holy Spirit revealed to me what was behind each thing I prayed against.  As I came against issue after issue, stronghold upon stronghold, I realized (big surprise, duh) the root issue was fear.

II Timothy 1:7 tells us, “For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and love and a sound mind.”  No need to expect power or love or a locigally reasoning mind from someone bound up in fear.  But if you can see it, if you can recognize the real root of the issue, you are the very person to take it to the mountain.  Boy, are you Somebody now!

P.S.  If you have never had the experience of being used by God to be The Someone let me tell you it’s the way to go.  You will be like Thorin and his warriors with their swords, and like Bilbo Baggins with his courage (study Smith Wigglesworth if you want inspiration for this, or just do the simple thing and read the Bible and choose the life therein).

.  You will be Someone.

And if you die, you die making a difference.  So much better than being the fearful, the living dead.

Just say, “Help!”

My daughter’s meltdown was right smack dab in the middle of mine, and while my stalwart husband was quietly nursing his own wounds over a perplexing disappointment.  But thank God for the woods.

It was there I received a phone call from my child saying she was ready to chuck it all and drive straight home to Colorado.  We talked and prayed through some things and I told her to first of all not make any decisions until after Fall Break (during which she will spend a week camping with beloved family in Oklahoma) and secondly to call her best buddy and ask if she can come over.  Most important of all, we got rid of the poisons due to taking offense, including being offended by a Christian “minister” who insulted homeschoolers (yes, Rebekah was homeschooled) in her presence.  But back to someone much more important – a true friend, and the one I told Rebekah to call.

“I don’t want to bother her, she’s doing a report (or something like that)” was Rebekah’s reply.  “Call her!  She’s called you crying before and you came to her rescue.  She’s also good at rescue.”

So, as Rebekah called her friend I called mine, who has known and loved my daughter all her life.  “Could you just call and encourage her and pray with her?” I asked, knowing it was a done deal, and a good deal.

There’s lots more to this story, like how God showed off the very next day for Rebekah and with one blessing after another throughout the day.  I’m talking BIG stuff and REAL breakthroughs, and beautiful blessings.  Isn’t that so often the way when we think we can’t take any more – victory is around the very next corner!

I pondered how often we don’t ask for help when we really need it, when we really should ask for it, and how we do ask for help when we really don’t need it.  And when I talked it over with my brother, Cal, he said this:  “It’s an honor to be asked for help.”  

So, let’s not be always pulling ourselves up by our bootstraps, and let’s know that it’s OK to ask for help.  Rebekah told me she didn’t like to call me when she was lonesome and upset, because she knew it would be hard for me to hear her cry.  “I didn’t want to put that on you,” she told me.  But she said that she’d learned her lesson, and wouldn’t be doing that any more.

Praise God!  How I HATE the thought that she would cry alone, all alone, so far from home.

I know God must feel the same way when we don’t come to Him with our troubles, and unburden our hearts to Him.

Thanks for listening,

Bev

P.S.  Speaking of asking for help, I haven’t posted recently because I have been trying and trying and really trying to figure out how to get back on this website – couldn’t sign in, and coudln’t figure out the problem.  Finally, I got my husband involved, and I’m happy to say he couldn’t figure it out for a good while, either.  But he did, and I’m posting again!

I have pictures to share very soon – some new decorating I’ve done.  I’m inordinately pleased with the outcome, especially as it cost almost nothing – there was great use of what was right under my nose!

https://1360khnc.com/

P.P.S.  Catch John and me, along with Crystal Lyons (crystallyons.com) tomorrow, Wednesday the 9th of October, at 8:00 am Mountain Time.  

We’ll be on https://1360khnc.com/