In February, my husband and I attended the Legacy Coalition annual conference for Grandparents. (See legacycoalition.com). The key point is to intentionally mentor your grandchildren in the faith as well as have fun with them. In addition to the keynote speakers, there was a wide array of break-out sessions that seemed to cover most grand-parenting situations. They also had a huge resource room of books and hands on materials. I highly recommend attending this conference, if you can.
I’m not sure if this little booklet is still in print, so I’m sharing my summary of it:
He discusses 3 events. First, is salvation, which comes through faith in Jesus Christ and making Him Lord of our lives. That’s when we receive the deposit of the Holy Spirit and the regenerating work of the Spirit begins. We can’t lose our salvation.
Next he discusses the baptism of the Holy Spirit. This is a one time event, like salvation, but the purpose of the baptism of the Holy Spirit is to empower us for service (not save us). This is where the gifts of the Spirit come into play.
How do you receive the baptism of the Holy Spirit?
If Christ has been accepted as Savior and Lord and openly confessed as such in God’s way; if sin has been searched out and put away; if there has been total surrender of the will and of self to God; if there is a true desire, for God’s glory, to be baptized with the Holy Spirit–if these conditions have been met, then the reader may ask God to baptize him with the Holy Spirit. He can then say, when the prayer has gone up, “that the prayer was heard: I have what I have asked: I have the baptism with the Holy Spirit”; and he has a right to get up and go out to his work assured that in that work he will have the Holy Spirit’s power.
(My note: we can ask God to help us with things like surrendering our will and leaving our sin.)
Being baptized with the Holy Spirit is a one time thing, but we need to be continually filled with the Holy Spirit for each act of service. We should ask for this filling daily. The daily filling of the Holy Spirit is the third topic he discusses. We can’t lose our salvation, but we can lose access to the Holy Spirit’s power.
Spiritual power may be lost. How?
1. God withdraws His power from men when they go back on their separation to Him. (ie; Sampson) Beware of being drawn back into the world. The solution for when that happens: renew your consecration to God.
2. Power is lost through the incoming of sin. (ie; the Old Testament King Saul)
The one who has known God’s power in service, and would continue to know it, must walk very softly before Him. He must be listening constantly to hear what God bids him to do or not do. He must respond promptly to the slightest whisper of God. Ask myself: is there any little thing I am doing that God has told me not to? Am I leaving anything undone that God has told me to do? Set this matter right with God and the power will return. (ie; King David when he repented) We should daily ask the Lord to reveal our sins and then repent of them!
3. Power is lost again to self indulgence. The one who would have God’s power must lead a life of self-denial. The gratification of the flesh and the fullness of the Spirit do not go hand-in-hand. Prayer and fasting can help us fight our flesh.
4. Power is lost through greed for money. (ie; Judas Iscariot) Beware of covetousness.
5. Power is lost through pride. Beware of spiritual pride! (The apostle Paul was thankful for his thorn that kept him humble.) The more God uses us the lower we need to get before Him!
6. Power is lost through neglect of prayer. Constantly be recharged through prayer!
7. Power is lost through neglect of the Word. We must meditate daily, carefully, profoundly upon the Word if we are to maintain power.
The Baptism With the Holy Spirit, R.A. Torrey; copyright 1972; Published by Bethany House Publishers, 11400 Hampshire Ave. South, Bloomington, Minnesota 55438
If you can find a copy, I recommend reading it!
I was cleaning out my book shelf and ran across the book How To Help Your Child Say No To Sexual Pressure by Josh McDowell. I’m not sure if it’s still in print, so I’ll share the notes I had taken.
from pages 128-136: Reasons to Wait (What God wants to protect you from):
I. Physical (1) It can become addicting: you crave it, but the pleasure is short-lived; (2) It can damage your self-image by the anxiety of performance (being compared to someone else & feeling you have to measure up to hold onto the person; wondering if they’re comparing you to past lovers (3) sexually transmitted diseases (4) pregnancy
II. Spiritual (1) Losing respect for yourself & your body by sinning against your own body. 1 CO 6:18: “Flee sexual immorality. Every sin that a man does is outside the body, but he who commits sexual immorality sins against his own body.” We lose respect for our body & our partner’s body. (2) God’s righteous judgment: He will punish unrepentant sinners eventually (3) Fellowship with God: When we do things we feel guilty about, we don’t want to be close to Him. So, we tend to withdraw from Him. (4) Poor witness to the unsaved world, if we look no different than them. If our lifestyle isn’t different, what will attract the unsaved to Christ? How can they see that God changes lives? The positive benefits of waiting: (1) God blesses the righteous (2) patience is a fruit of the Spirit: waiting develops patience in us (3) it draws us closer to Jesus when we make HIM our #1 relationship: He’s the best one to be intimate with.
III. Emotional (1) Guilt. This makes it difficult to have an emotionally intimate relationship (2) misleading feelings. Sexual involvement causes us to confuse sex & love. Love is unselfish. (3) Premarital sex can create negative feelings about sex (guilt, resentment, fear). When these feelings become associated with sex, it’s difficult to enjoy sex fully, even in marriage. (4) Sex usually does 1 of 2 things to a dating relationship: (a) It ends a good relationship or (b) it keeps a bad one going (they think they know each other better than they do just because they’re “close” sexually). Waiting shows your spouse you cared enough to wait for them.
IV. Relational Reasons (1) Breakdown in communication. Time that should be spent discussing their relationship is spent on sex, instead. Also, uneasy feelings hinder good communication (ie; feeling guilty). (2) It takes time away from them developing a healthy social, intellectual & emotional relationship. (3) Comparisons to other past lovers. (Either in your mind or your spouse’s.)
Pages 137-139 have responses you can give to people who pressure you to give in. (Some are funny.)
I hope this is helpful to those of you who are still raising children.
Other related books, if they’re still in print, are: Dynamic Dating by Barry St. Clair (gives creative dating ideas) & Why Wait? by Josh McDowell.
I would like to recommend the book Love Without Limits by Nick & Kanae Vujicic. Not only is it the inspirational story of a man born without legs and arms finding the love of his life, but they have some good practical advice for both single people and married couples.
For those of you who would prefer to just read the suggestions and skip the story, see these pages: Single people: pages 3-7, 69-70, 77, 89-100, Chap. 8 (weddings), and Chap. 9. Married couples: pages 154-157 & Chap. 14
God bless you!
This is an excellent book on prayer! She looks at 10 strategies that the devil uses against us and shows how we can battle them! The book is packed full of useful Scriptures! (She says it’s a battle plan for women, but it’s just as appropriate for men!)
I recommend the book Boundaries by Dr. Henry Cloud & Dr. John Townsend. This book discusses the need for setting boundaries in relationships, why we often don’t, and how to go about doing so. Chapter 10 discusses the different age groups between birth & 18 years and related guidelines.
For those who truly desire to know and do God’s will, I highly recommend the book, Listening to God In Times of Choice (The Art of Discerning God’s Will) by Gordon T. Smith.
This is not your typical “how to” book, but rather excellent direction in living a life style that enables us to better discern God’s will. However, Gordon does give some excellent guidance (whether or not you agree with everything he says).
For those of you who have the time to read an in-depth book (in an easy to read style), I recommend The Feeling Good Handbook by David D. Burns, M.D.
The chapters that are appropriate for anyone are: Chapter One (recognizing distorted thinking and dealing with it) and chapters 18-22 on communication.
The book also has excellent information and cognitive behavioral techniques for overcoming depression and anxiety, as well as an analysis of mood-altering medications.
Two excellent resources for marriage are:
1) Love and Respect by Dr. Emerson Eggerichs. If you don’t enjoy reading these kinds of things, I highly recommend the DVD series by that name. Ask for the conference DVDs. They’re very entertaining, as well as informative (he has a great sense of humor!). They are $105.95 with shipping (as of 2017). Call (616) 951-7300 eastern time to order.
2) Sacred Influence by Gary Thomas. This is an excellent book for helping wives to understand their husbands and become a positive influence in their lives. You may have to order it through a Christian bookstore, since it was published in 2006 and may not be in stock.