Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Strolling Around some links today...

I am teaching the teens class this year, and I'm as unprepared with plans as I was when Bro Bud spoke to me about it last year.

The trouble is it's a mixed class...7 children, ranging from 10 up to 17 years. Most are my own children, then 2 sisters from one family, a girl from another family, and the neighbor young man we bring along.

I'm just not sure what to teach them. Or how to teach them. One of the teens is less than interested in what goes on in class, but it's the only time they really come to church, so I feel a bit pressured with that fact, I guess.

I am rather against 'entertaining' children at church. I can understand it for the youngest levels in a way, but I don't feel the slightest bit led to keep things 'interesting' for the teens. Less so if they claim Salvation already, which most of these teens do. My own children have been pulled out of many a class because of the emphasis on entertainment and the like. That isn't the purpose of church, imo. If I want my children to grow into spiritual adults, allowing them to treat church as some social activity and keeping things fluffy just isn't an option. Typically, my children have stayed in service with us, even in adult class. They were taught to sit and pay attention, not fidget about and expect to be entertained while sitting with crayons and other activities.

I'm not raising 'children' -- I'm raising the next generation of adults. We have far too many 30 and 40 year old 'children' in the world already :o(

So -- I'll probably teach from Christian Ethics in class, unless The Lord leads me to a better idea. Any thoughts?

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

We are starting a ladies fellowship at church. Mind you, we are a small church...the ladies group, at least getting started is likely to be rather small :o) For sure, my girls (well, in all likelihood, all of my children...) and myself, maybe 2 other sisters.

We are planning a work time for the ladies basically. Something like crocheting some squares for afghans to be put together and given to a shelter, the Red Cross, etc. Our local economy has taken a serious dive in the past months with at least 2 major factories closing their doors, and that Toyota plant being 'postponed' for a time. Most of these families were only a paycheck away from being homeless as it was, and jobs are not forth-coming any more here than they are in other places.

I suppose some of the more rural families here would be offended by my descriptions of them, but I certainly don't mean them in an offending way at all. We are rural. This area is not like any other rural area I've lived in. There are families still walking a by-gone path in their lifestyle. They are plain and simply country folk. That is part of what I truly do love about where we have made our home. It's like walking into the past in so many respects.

But, this ladies fellowship...me and those bunny trails, I know...I've been looking up various Titus 2 Ministries and other women's groups, gleaning ideas. Back north, we were in a small church (although there it was 100 people...not barely 40) and we had a wonderful ladies group that met together at least 4 or 5 times yearly for a Ladies Tea. The idea was good -- ladies meeting together, praying as a group over the various topics that our lives encountered, sharing our hearts in Scripture, small teaching lessons and the like.

But, it didn't take long to become something far more worldly than any church fellowship ought to be. The tea tables began getting fancy and, well, rather snobbish. Several ladies would take a table and decorate it in a theme. It was all pretty enough, but the end results were more of a 'talent show' than a true fellowship, glorifying God. And the prayer warriors who started out so nobly in their premise ended up being a thinly-veiled gossip party. It was sad to watch it dissinigrate into such worldly ruin. I mean, I'm all for sharing prayer needs with one another -- that's what we are called to, bear one another's burdens -- but if all you are truly doing (and you know in your heart that you are) is looking for an 'appropriate' way to share the latest gossip or dirty laundry, just man up and say so. It's ridiculous to hide it under a fellowship banner -- you aren't fooling anyone really, they all know what each other is doing whether you call it a spade or not.

I don't see that being an issue here in this small church, but it is something serious to guard against. Maybe the more free the plan is, the easier it is to fall into those trappings? I don't know. Either way, it's best to enter into a fellowship gathering with some idea of a plan of action. There isn't much I can 'teach' the ladies up here -- there are mostly miles ahead of me from a homekeeping approach (I just discovered the trick of ironing with a spray bottle of diluted fabric softener and another with diluted starch! What a difference that made in my ironing! And I never knew it before! I live under such a rock.)

Here are some of my gleanings today --

A Christian Home -- full of links for all manner of Godly Womanhood things
Mom of 9's Place -- full of blessings and teachings
Creative Ladies Ministries -- a great collection of ideas, including a ministry binder
Ladies of Grace
Titus 2 Christian Homekeepers -- various sites, blogs linked together

I found some great women's lessons to print off that we might be able to use for the fellowship gatherings. I'll have to print them off and see what the other ladies think.


Ann'Re @ Home said...

Good post! We are in the beginning stages of a woman's ministry at our little church also and have a lot of the same ideas and concerns. I'd really like to see and am praying to see Titus 2 lived out in our church...what a beautiful ministry that would be. :)

GraceFromHim said...

Titus 2 is one of my favorite sites :) Thanks for posting the others too I love to find ne encouraging sites!


Jeremiah 6:16
Thus saith the LORD, Stand ye in the ways, and see, and ask for the old paths, where is the good way, and walk therein, and ye shall find rest for your souls.

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