We are so excited! 4 Higham's are getting ready to head out on their first mission trip!
In just a couple of weeks, Amy and our 3 oldest boys, will join with a group from our church, for a week-long missions trip to Kentucky! A total of 16 people will be making their way from Western PA to a community in Appalachia Kentucky.
We're excited because we've been wanting for our teens to expereince the incredible oportunities that come through short-term mission trips. Amy and I (Jay) have served on a number of short-term trips in our teen and young adult years. As a youth pastor, Jay took teams of students on trips. Now we have a chance to send our boys!
The trip will be a week long mission that will serve a region that is desparately deprived. Ranking as one of the poorest areas in our country, our team will join dozens of others from all over the area, to share God's love, mercy and grace. Through work projects, children's ministry and sports ministry, our group will have the opportunity to work closely with the children and families of the community. Our host organization, Big Creek Missions, has been working with this community since 2002. Their commitment is to make a difference in the lives of the people in this community.
The trip will take place from July 19th through 26th, 2015. We would love to ask you to pray for the trip and the team! Most almost everyone on the team, this will be their first missions trip! So your ongoing prayer support will be needed and greatly appreciated!
We would also like to ask for your prayer support for our family. While Amy is away, I (Jay) will be home balancing church work, the 9-5 work, and the remaining 2 kiddos'.
For the safety and privacy of our team members, our family, and the trip, I are keeping this post brief. While we want to share the trip and our prayer requests with you, we also want to be aware of privacy issues regarding a trip like this. But if you would like specifics of what to pray for, or how you can financially support our family or the trip, please contact is via email. When the trip is over, we'll share some of our expereinces and what was learned while away!
If you would be willing to pray for us, simply comment below! We would love to know who your are so we can thank you!
- the higham family
Who's responsible for the discipleship of your kids?
While each of these might be a resource and a help, none of them are designed to take the place of the primary discipler.
So who has the task of teaching, training, and leading?
As parents, WE are the one's charged with our children's discipleship.
Read Deuteronomy 6:1-9...
6 These are the commands, decrees and laws the Lord your God directed me to teach you to observe in the land that you are crossing the Jordan to possess, 2 so that you, your children and their children after them may fear the Lord your God as long as you live by keeping all his decrees and commands that I give you, and so that you may enjoy long life. 3 Hear, Israel, and be careful to obey so that it may go well with you and that you may increase greatly in a land flowing with milk and honey, just as the Lord, the God of your ancestors, promised you.
4 Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. 5 Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength. 6 These commandments that I give you today are to be on your hearts. 7 Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. 8 Tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. 9 Write them on the doorframes of your houses and on your gates.
We might not be Israel, but we need to realize that the journey of faith begins in the home as parents teach their children about who God is. We are the ones who are suppose to be teaching our children. We are the ones called to live by example. We are the ones who will one day stand before God to give an account of our actions and obedience.
Yes, be sure to go to a good Bible teaching church.
Yes, make sure your children are participating in the Children's ministry provided.
Yes, get your teenagers to youth group every week!
Each one of these can help you in tremendous ways. But don't make the mistake in thinking that the Church is all that your kids need. They still need you!
- the higham family
Last week we started considering how we discipline our children, asking the question, What do we see the Bible teach us about discipline? If you missed the first 3 articles, let me invite you to read them first before we go on with today's thoughts. (Click here for Part 1.)
As we move forward, I want to spend a few more minutes thinking about what the Bible has to say to parents about discipline. In the introduction of this series, the second thought that I shared was the realization that the Bible needs to be the source for discipline. That if we as parents hope to discipline our children in a godly way, we must look towards the Bible as our first source of Truth and Godly wisdom. I say first, because I think there are a number of great books written by godly men and women, to and for parents to help us discipline well. Many of these books draw in biblical principles and present them as techniques to help you be a better parent. I have read and am reading books such as these and they have been helpful. But what I want to reinforce for us as parents is that to rely on just these books and never really opening up the Bible to read and learn God's word first hand is dangerous. I do not discredit the intention or the effectiveness of these books. Many are great books. But parents, you MUST be in the word of God daily; reading, studying, and allowing the Holy Spirit to teach you the vital truths that come from God.
So the first question is this, Why? Why is the Bible the best source for disciplining your children?
The Apostle Paul writes to the young pastor Timothy, “All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness; so that the man of God may be adequate, equipped for every good work.” (2 Timothy 3:16,17 esv)
In my opinion, these two verses state, very clearly, the why. As believers, we recognize that the Bible is the Word of God. Paul teaches that more than a book of theology and stories, the Bible is to be applied to every aspect of life. If we want to be men and women who are adequately equipped and ready for every good work (that is ready to live obediently before the Lord) then we must see the Bible as the best tool that God has given to us to teaching, reproofing, correcting, and training up. Thus it would make sense that if, as parents, we want to train up our children to do the good work of God, then we must be teaching from the word of God.
How often do you open your Bible? For some of us it might only be on Sunday morning. Perhaps for others, we are faithful at reading our Bibles most days; maybe even every day. But how often are you opening your Bible in front of your kids? To teach them? To correct them? To build them up in wisdom? To equip them that they might live to bring glory to the Lord?
Discipline begins with teaching. If we're not teaching God's Word, what are we teaching?
- the higham family
As always, thanks for reading! If you liked this post or have found it to be helpful, be like it below and share it with your friends! You can also follow us on Facebook and Twitter, and our new Youtube channel that's now live!
Discipline begins with instruction.
That was lesson one. To properly carry out the work of disciplining our children we must first become their teachers. As God taught Adam in the garden concerning the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, we too must instruct our children.
I think one of the hardest things to do as a parent is to discipline your child. As a parent, I really don't like putting restrictions or punishment on the kids. But carrying out the discipline to it's fullest extent is super important. That means that whether you like it or not, discipline must include consequences.
Let's consider once again, our passage from Genesis 2:16 & 17.
16 And the Lord God commanded the man, saying, “You may surely eat of every tree of the garden, 17 but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die.”
(Gen. 2:16-17 esv)
Notice what God does here. First God gives the man the teaching, 'do eat from this particular tree.' Then he follows up with the consequence, '...for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die.' (Harsh, right?)
As we talk to our kids, one of the things I always come back to is the fact that everything we do comes with a consequence. If we do right, there are good consequences. If we do wrong, there are bad consequences. I think of what God says to Cain in Genesis 4:7, "7 If you do well, will you not be accepted? And if you do not do well, sin is crouching at the door. Its desire is for you, but you must rule over it.” (Gen. 4:7 esv) When I read this, I see God counseling Cain to consider his actions and what he is about to do.
Here's a scenario. Child 'A' walks past Child 'B'. Child 'B' thinks he'll be funny and put his foot out to trip Child 'A'. After falling on his face, Child 'A' doesn't think it was so funny. Child 'A' then chooses to retaliate. Now child 'B' is crying, and both come running to you for justice.
Now, had Child 'A' just walked away, Child 'B' would be the only one in the wrong. But because Child 'A' chose to retaliate leaving his sibling in tears, Child 'A' gets the corrective attention and the speech. "You had a choice to make." I say, "you could have walked away and come and told me what happened and I would have handled your sibling. But because YOU CHOSE to act on your own, you will now have to deal with the consequences of your actions." (And because it involved a physical act, the consequences are bit more severe.)
Here's my point. Along with teaching our children what we expect, we must also teach them what the consequence will be if they so choose to go down that path. For the man and the woman in the Garden of Eden, the consequence of their actions was death. And when God came to deal with the man and the woman, he carried out the corrective discipline. Together they were cast from God's presence in the garden, and left to manage without him. Something similar occurs with Cain. He chose to follow the path of sin, and God handed down the consequences accordingly.
You see, God always follows through with his children. As he teaches us the expectations he has for us, there is always the warning of what will happen if and when we disobey. And while there is always forgiveness, there is still the realities of our consequences.
As parents, we must think about discipline as both a BEFORE and an AFTER process. Before means we are teaching our kids what we expect and what will happen if there is disobedience. After means that we follow up with the said consequences. And while it may pain us to see our kids dealing with the consequences, we have to remember that they chose to be disobedient. Hopefully you consistency in loving them and being firm in your discipline will help to direct them into future obedience.
We'll talk more about Discipline and the Bible in our next post.
In the meantime, thanks for reading! If you liked this post or have found it to be helpful, be like it below and share it with your friends! You can also follow us on Facebook and Twitter, and our new Youtube channel that's now live!
If you missed the earlier 2 posts, you can find them by clicking on the links below!
Discipline and the Bible - Part 1 & Discipline and the Bible- Part 2...
- the Higham Family
Thanks for taking the time to read The Higham Family Blog. Each week we try to share new content about something we are learning, something we love, or something to offer encouragement to the family. We love to hear from our readers, so please share your thought in the comment section of each post.