What I’m Reading, Thinking, Doing – 7/31/15
WHAT I’M READING:
- Ten Proposed Commandments for Christian Parenting — #4 is the one that’s most difficult for me. What about you?
- A Letter to the Sister in Christ Who Aborted Her Child(ren)
- Can We Kill Human Beings if They Are Not Persons?
- On Planned Parenthood, Ashley Madison, and Shame— What happens in a culture where sexuality in every form is celebrated, and yet we still meet with shame from (what everyone used to know was) poor decisions?
- Mom of 8-Year-Old Gay Pride Marcher Responds to Critics — We’re really botching this parenting business, and this article shows the absurdity of our modern era. Unfortunately, Yahoo!, in classic Yahoo! fashion, is choosing not to show the comments for this article, but I saw them when there were hundreds of people with common-sense responses calling this mom out for being irresponsible. The mainstream media does not want us to feel like we have the right to say this is absolute nonsense, but it is absolute nonsense. Intellectuals from the ages have thought that children need guidance in their tastes, choices, and celebrations. Only in our modern age do people think that fetuses aren’t people, yet 3-year-olds “know themselves” and can begin therapy to become something other than they actually are. Mama, don’t fall prey to thinking that this is normal.
- The Real Reason Women Are Having Children Later — this article points out so many inherent flaws with the approach of feminism and why, a generation later, women are worse off, and not better off. Somehow, interestingly, even when they “have it their way,” feminists find a way to blame men for their problems.
- We Don’t Love Children; We Love Drywall — a sad but true assessment of our materialistic culture (even in the church!)
- More Kids, Less Stress? Survey Reveals the Magic Number of Children for a Worry-Free Future — Haha, well, I don’t know about “worry-free,” but stats seem to consistently show that moms of more than average have less stress, though most people would expect the opposite. It presents a chicken-and-egg conundrum, perhaps: is it that moms who stress less go on to have a third child (or more), or that moms who go on to have a third (or more) stress less?
- The Bible and Same-Sex Marriage: 6 Common But Mistaken Claims — one sample quote: ” Whereas with creation/slavery/women one can point to passages where counter-tensions existed with what was clear (such as the way Paul asks Philemon to treat Onesimus, or how Mary sat as Jesus’s disciple, or how the Spirit is said to indwell all women), no OT or NT text is even neutral on same-sex issues. Every single text that mentions the topic does so negatively.”
“Aristotle says that the aim of education is to make the pupil like and dislike what he ought. When the age for for reflective thought comes, the pupil who has thus been trained in “ordinate affections” or “just sentiments” will easily find the first principles in Ethics: but to the corrupt man they will never be visible at all… the little human will not at first have the right responses. It must be trained to feel pleasure, liking, disgust, and hatred, at those things which really are pleasant, likable, disgusting, and hateful.” ~C.S. Lewis, The Abolition of Man
- What my Bible study time should look like now, in this season of motherhood… I used to be faithful at deep, ongoing Bible study, and have just flat out dropped the ball on this. I’ve been doing 2 Corinthians for the past couple months with our ladies’ Sunday school group, and Exodus with Doug & the kids, and studying a variety of passages when I’m asked to do freelance work on a Bible study. Still, sometimes I feel like all I’m getting is just sustenance and not on-going deep meat like I used to do. Any suggestions out there? Ideas? Is this just how it is in some seasons? I don’t want to grow stagnant and be OK with that.
- The Problem With Transparency— How do we have small groups and accountability groups that truly propel sanctification, rather than mere confession of perpetual sin, fleshliness, and ugly attitudes?
- How to Raise Boys Who Read— We’ve got some great readers around here, but I’m still always thinking about our balance in this topic– where we fall on the video game/book continuum. I’m (personally) not a fan of video games. And yet I loved playing Super Mario. And yet we own 4 Nintendo DS systems (only 1 of which we bought… and that was used)… which I let the kids pull out probably on average 15-25 times a year. We don’t keep them out, and it’s a rare treat, for a couple hours or an afternoon at a go, but they do sometimes get played in our home. So while I’m not a fan of video games in general, we own them and allow them in moderation. I guess, my general thought is, I don’t think they’re wicked in and of themselves, but I *do* think a great deal too many adult men seem to be mastered by video games, and as I think about what my boys are growing into, I don’t ever want them to be mastered by playing with plastic and pixels. We believe an important part of parenting is keeping careful watch over their appetites, and this is a particularly vulnerable appetite in our culture. Anything that approaches “mastering” our children gets talked about openly and they know has the potential to be cut altogether if I see it controlling them in an unhealthy way.
- Why Do We Sing? Hymns & Contemporary Christian Music in the Church — thoughts from a friend of mine that greatly mirror my own. One sample: “If our goal with congregational singing is to involve the people and unite them in communal worship we need to ask ourselves if we are achieving that goal. Are we inviting people to sing with us in a manner they can follow and in a manner which they can feel somewhat confident?…Sometimes I feel that a secret requirement of being a part of a congregation is to be conversant in the current songs playing on the Christian airwaves.” I have felt these things, and appreciate Pamela’s honesty.
- Getting ready for this homeschooling year… a bit of a switch-a-roo from our survival-get-through-it last few years of adjustment from whole books with two boys close in age, to multiple children at multiple levels… but this year, the focus is going to be back on whole books. Pray for me to persevere with this, y’all.
“Moral excellence is concerned with pleasures and pains; it is on account of the pleasure that we do bad things, and on account of the pain that we abstain from noble ones. Hence we ought to have been brought up in a particular way from our very youth, as Plato says, so as both to delight in and to be pained by the things that we ought; for this is the right education.” ~Aristotle, Nichomachean Ethics, Book 2, Chapter 3
- This has been the summer of extracurriculars for our family. I set out, at the beginning of this summer, with a MOTH-like schedule of what we would do each day… including logic, drawing, sports/P.E., and music. I wanted to give the kids purposeful, structured exposure to all the stuff we don’t always have regular time to fit in during the school year. Well, it’s all (mostly) boiled down to drawing and music, haha. Though I can make them wonderfully, I’m terrible at *keeping* rigid, MOTH-like schedules. But we have had SOME “success”– our 9-year-old daughter started taking violin this summer, and I’ve been teaching my 7 & 13 year olds how to play guitar. The last couple months have been focused on learning basics about the guitar and some chords. This week we started learning basic strum patterns. I’ve never taught guitar… so I’m sure I’m probably doing some things wrong, or in the wrong order, but it’s free, and I play well enough for them to get going with chords and rhythm. If they advance beyond my ability (which won’t take much effort), I’ll celebrate and we’ll consider “real” lessons.
- We found this awesome game– Mastermind— last week and everyone from the 5 year old and up has been enthralled! It’s a very clever, and very simple, game– my favorite type! We can’t stop playing… seems like somewhere in the house, someone’s playing, nonstop!
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