Darlene Osborne, Publisher
HOLD ON TO JESUS
—and HE won't let nothing go wrong!
October Issue Vol. 16 No. 4 The Christian Online Magazine™
Welcome to our October Issue!
by Paula Mowery, Staff Writer
The Writing Column: This month's guest writer is Cindy Sproles.
Write Anyway: The computer screen glowed a soft white. I’d drawn a blank. This writing stuff was hard. Too hard.
It wasn’t writer’s block. It was just plain hard work – hard to press one more letter on the keyboard, and harder to weave together any more cognitive thoughts.
Writing is supposed to be fun. Not hard. But therein lies the misnomer. It is difficult, and I as thumbed through yet another book on plotting, I wanted to scrap the entire project.
Paula's Book Nook: Angel Falls
Angel Falls by Connie Mann is my book review for this month. Readers are going to think I have definitely switched a lot of my reading to suspense since this book is another romantic suspense. But, there are so many good Christian suspense novels out right now. Connie Mann’s novel is no exception to the excellence being seen in the area of Christian romantic suspense.
Paula's Books are sold at Amazon
SnapShots of Grace
Joy Through the Storm
The news recently has been filled with horrific stories of terrorism and violence all over the world. The Ebola outbreak in West Africa is expected to arrive in the US soon, and this morning I woke to hear that where I used to live in Arizona has been inundated by rain causing massive flooding. It seems that no matter where you look, bad news is waiting to pounce. It is enough to make a person want to hole up in a bunker and focus on nothing but self-preservation.
.Lisa's books are sold at Amazon.
Does eating a rainbow sound finger licking good? How do you catch one to munch on it? Other than chasing rain and storm clouds all day, I would suggest going to a garden. The rainbow I’m talking about is actually colorful fruits and vegetables. Most experts agree that “the more brightly colored the vegetable, the more protective health benefits.”
by Jane Morin, Staff Writer
Autumn has arrived and with it the smell of crispness in the air and the view of breathtaking colors. Oh, how I love fall and the witnessing of a beautiful time when summer is rolled away for yet another year, and pumpkins begin to display their offerings. Yes, a new season has come, and for some of us, we are about to embark on a new season spiritually, as well.
by Shelley Pierce, Staff Writer
IThe little people with squeaky voices sang loud and strong. With a smile on each face and exaggerated hand motions, the preschool choir preached a message through song. "The rains came down, and the floods came up, the rains came down and the floods came up." It seemed the favorite line in the song was "and the house on the sand went splat" as they smacked their hands together loudly.
On the surface this appears to be a cutesy kids song. But if you don't stop and dissect the ditty you will miss the profound answer to one of life's most puzzling questions - Why does a good God allow bad things to happen?
The Joy of Baking
This Month's Recipe:
with Lisa L. Hnath, Staff Writer
The Joy of Baking
with Lisa Hnath
This month's recipe is for
Patrice D. Wilkerson: God's Love
Carolyn P. C. Martin: Fear Not!
Rose Drumheller: Obtain Mercy and Find Grace
If you need prayer
God wants to help!
Pray without ceasing!
Jetties Hess: Archived Poetry and Prose. Click here. This archive is at our former site. The site isn't kept up, but there are some golden nuggets there. Jettie has taken a break from writing but we hope she will return soon!
Fall is here, Summer is gone
Winter will be here before long!
Socialization - Are Our Kids Missing Something? by Brenda Covert
Home schools haven’t always been subject to controversy. The faces of George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Thomas Edison, Albert Einstein, Agatha Christie, Charles Dickens, and John Philip Sousa would adorn the Home Schooling Hall of Fame, if one existed. In their time, “socialization” wasn’t an issue. Unfortunately, in education today the focus has shifted to socialization over academics!
Though their children may excel academically, home schooling parents face accusations of stunting their children’s social development through isolation. However, nothing could be further off-base. Evidence suggests that home schooled children have greater social confidence than their public school counterparts. After all, socializing is NOT what children are in school for! Just ask my son’s K-4 teacher (his only public school experience); she told me that my gregarious little fellow was “too” sociable. A teacher punished a friend’s talkative 3rd grader for talking in class; she made him walk the perimeter of the playground alone during recess, the only time when children are normally allowed to talk to each other! Home schooled children talk to their mothers, their siblings, the neighbors, store clerks, librarians, and other children at the park, all without fear of punishment!
Most home schooling parents, keenly aware that they alone are responsible for their children’s development, go the extra mile to enrich their children’s social lives.
Donna Yancey kept school work to the mornings. The afternoon options for her daughter were mind-boggling. She tackled swimming, tennis, volleyball, basketball, gymnastics, drama, and ice skating. In addition, she sang in church, contributed to a home schooling newsletter, and experienced culture at a performing arts center, where home schoolers can attend performances alongside public school kids. Then there were field trips and also family activities. Mrs. Yancey wryly said that they had considered softball, but decided the social calendar was full.
“You don’t have to worry about socializing,” Lissa Sawicki affirmed, “You have to worry about mileage and gas!” Mrs. Sawicki home schooled her pre-teen daughters, who were involved in Bible clubs and studies, volunteer work, piano, softball, soccer, basketball, and a pony club.
As home schooling continues to grow in popularity, more and more opportunities are created for home schooled students. There are co-ops for group learning, specific interest clubs, workshops and even classes like pottery, physical education, and dance. My own children have enjoyed (although not all at once!) soccer, basketball, ballet, gymnastics, swimming, roller skating, ice skating, home school choir, piano lessons, recitals at the local nursing home, and 4-H clubs, where both are officers this year. Most of those activities have been specifically for home schoolers, except for soccer and basketball, which were church-related. However, there are home school sports teams available for when they become teenagers!
Their own exposure to public or private schools leads some home schoolers to develop strong opinions about the socialization issue. Lissa Sawicki says that when people insist that schools are essential for socialization, they are misguided. What schools tend to do is introduce everybody’s standards to your kids. Above all else, your own standards are most important for your family. Since God created the family as a social unit, parents are ultimately responsible to the Lord for the training of their children.
Socialization, in case you didn’t know, is not a synonym for socializing. Socializing is what kids do on the jungle gym and what co-workers do around the coffee maker: it’s just making conversation in a group. I much prefer my child to learn godly behavior and beliefs from an adult with a Christian world view (that would be me) rather than to learn about what passes for “standard” these days from a pack of Britney Spears imitators. That kind of “socialization” we can do without!
With a little effort, every home schooled child can be involved in as many activities as the parent can stand. Many are low-cost; some are even no-cost, such as “park days,” when home schoolers schedule a regular time to meet at a playground. Thoughtful conversations with family members will go a long way in training a child in the art of conversation as well, and that activity is priceless.
Copyright 2003 by Brenda B. Covert
LOVE TO PRAY
by Jettie Hess
Our prayers should be as burning words coming forth from the furnace of hearts filled with love. In them speak to God with great reverence and confidence. With natural simplicity offer your praise to God with the whole of your heart and soul. Love to pray. Feel the need to pray often during the day. Prayer emerges the heart until it is capable of containing God’s gift of Himself. Ask and seek and your heart will grow big enough to receive Him and keep Him as your own.
I will lift my voice to heaven
I will shout with joyful glee
I will tell Him that I love Him
For what He did for me.
In Him I have sweet oneness
His light on me will prevail
It is now my duty to praise Him
And His message of love to tell.
Copyright by Jettie C. Hess