Category Archives: 30 minutes for Mommy

30 Minutes for Mommy: Lesson 4

Monday

Lesson 4 focuses on Milcah and Sari/Sarah and their genetic relationship to their husbands.  It is a widely accepted fact that incestuous relationships occurred at the beginning of time.  I was always told that this was acceptable at the time because there simply weren’t enough people to reproduce without incest occurring and human disease was not developed enough to cause so many genetic defects as we see in incestuous relationships today.  I would like to know what you have heard in this matter because it has always been curious to me.  You can find a listing of scriptures that deal with laws concerning incest and many examples at Nave’s Online if you would like to study this matter further.

It is important to note that there are permissible and taboo examples of incest in the Bible.  I have made a table illustrating the lineage of Terah that show the marriages and familial relationships between three well known couples in the Old Testament.  Each generation is a different color, arrows indicate a marriage, and scripture references are given complete with links.  From this we learn that sibling and second generation marriages were acceptable.  When we discuss the daughter’s of Lot, we will learn of an unacceptable union.

Tuesday

In beginning to study about Sarai, we learn that she was the half sister of Abram(Gen 20:12), she was very fair to look upon (Gen 12:11; 12:14-15), and she was submissive to her husband (Gen 12:5- Sari left her family without complaint and went where Abram led.  Gen 12:13 – Sari did as she was told without argument).

It is her beauty, however, that is the cause of so much trouble.  Abram was afraid that her beauty would cost him his life, and so he asked her to assist him in hiding a part of their relationship by saying that they were siblings, rather than married.  Abram protected himself and her somewhat by doing this because any man interested in her would have had to consult him for permission first.  Unfortunately, Pharo did not have to ask permission.  God saves Sari and plagues Pharo for her sake (Gen. 12:16-20).

Here are some lessons to consider:

Ignorance is no excuse

Pharo and Abimelech were both punished for taking Sari even though they didn’t know that what they were doing was wrong.  We can’t claim ignorance when punishment is dealt out.

Obedience and Faith

Sarai was obedient (1 Pet 3:6) to her husband.  Wether she agreed with him or not, we do not know, but she was obedient.  She may have even had great faith in God to get her out of any mess that her husband inadvertently put her in.

God uses the imperfect

Abraham, being a prophet of God (Gen. 20:7), lied for the same reason on two different occasions and was never rebuked by God for it.  You could call it a half lie, or a white lie, or simply hiding the truth, but in any case he was dishonest.  This could show a lack of faith on his part in that he did not have faith in God to see him through these trying times of his sojourn.  Maybe it was these times that built his faith to the point that he was willing to sacrifice his son for God.

(thanks to creationism.org for the image)

Being Patient in All Things

In Gen 16:1 we see the seed of Sarai’s impatience.  It had been ten years since God’s promise was made to Abram, Sari was 75 and Abram was 85, and the still had no child.  Sarai worried that they would never have children so she offers Hagar to her husband, (Gen 16:1-2).  We read, “Abram harkened to the voice of Sarai”, and went into Hagar and she conceived.  In the article, ‘Beware of Shortcuts‘, by Keith Krell, he points out that Sari is following a common pagan practice of the day by offering Hagar to Abram.  Culturally, there was nothing wrong with Abram using Hagar as a sort of surrogate mother.

There are two important lessons to be taken from these two passages both having to do with patience.  First, Sari worries they will not have children and therefor turns from waiting on God to following the ways of the pagans and what was culturally accepted.  How many practices are common today and are culturally accepted but show a lack of patience on the part of those that partake in them and a turning from God?  Abortion, drinking to drunkenness, fornication, use of foul language, living together before marriage,  pornography and white lies are only some of the many culturally accepted things of this day that are clearly wrong in God’s eyes and show a lack of patience.  The practices I have mentioned range on man’s scale of severity, but remember, to God, sin is sin and can only be forgiven by God through His perfect plan of salvation.

The second lesson is about being tempted to participate in these practices.  Abram was the second man we read about who harkened to his wife.  Can you remember another man who harkened to his wife?  Eve also tempted her husband with something desirable.  As women, we have such a great power and responsibility to our men.  When they are facing uncertain times and are weak, they can be easily tempted and if we don’t behave as women of God, we could potentially lead them into temptation just as Eve and Sari did.  We must always encourage ourselves and our husbands to be patient and wait on God.

Their are always repercussions for our sins.  The repercussion for Sari and Abram’s was great.  First, Hagar despised Sarai and began to think of herself as better than her mistress, (Gen 16:4).  Sarai knows she was wrong in her suggestion to Abram,(Gen 16:5), but compounds the problem by dealing harshly with Hagar, (Gen 16:6).  This causes a great strife and wedge between the two women.

 

 

 

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The Wife of Job

I know ‘tomorrow’ was a long time ago, but better late than never.  Since it has been several days, let’s review a little.  The basic story is that Job had a wonderful life and in one day lost everything except his wife, three friends, and a very arrogant person named Elihu.  His wife was no support and told him to curse God.  His friends were no support and would not speak truth to him; insisting that he must have sinned against God to deserve this punishment.  And then Elihu came along and listened, spoke truth, and prepared Job to speak with God.

As women and wives, we have valuable lessons to learn from these three examples.  Job’s wife encouraged him to get his suffering over by cursing God.  She did not have the best interests of her husband in mind.  She wasn’t thinking about where he would spend eternity if he cursed God, or maybe it just wasn’t a concern of hers.  As Christians, our primary goal should be to help one another get to heaven.  If we do not have a unified goal, what is the purpose of marriage?  We are only given one example of the character of Job’s wife, so it is hard to say exactly how she might have been the rest of the time.  The one thing she is remembered for is attempting to lead her husband astray, yet I do not think she was all together bad.  As far as we know, Job did not marry anyone else, so we must assume that it was his wife who was blessed with seven new children and all the blessings God gave Job.  When speaking with our husbands, we should remember that every word we say to them could be our most remembered word.  I suspect that Job’s wife was in a week moment and she spoke foolishly after hearing that her husband had lost his herds and flocks and their own children were gone as well.  Maybe this one recorded instance was not a true example of her character, but it is the most outstanding and what she is remembered for.  If your husband had to remember you for only one remark, what would it be?

We can contrast Job’s wife with Elihu to learn better how she should have treated him.  Elihu listened to Job where his friends did not.  He spoke truth to him where his friends did not.  He praised God and pointed out where Job was wrong where his friends did not.  After being treated in this way, Job argued no more and was ready to hear and see God.  This is the way we should be treating our husbands.  We should treat them with respect by listening to every word they say and speak to them truthfully, making sure to not stroke egos.  By doing this, our husbands will be able to have better understanding and clarity of mind to deal with whatever might be troubling them.

Men are in a very stressful position as the head of our homes.  They carry a lot of responsibility in providing for the family and leading that family in all spiritual things.  As the primary source of support for our husbands, we can either help them to the right decision or hinder them by encouraging them to the easiest, most fun, or most convenient choice.  Worse yet, it is very easy for a wife to manipulate her husband’s decision to what will be of most benefit to her.

I would like to hear how some of you help your husbands through difficult times.

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30 Minutes for Mommy: Basil Banana Smoothie

It’s really good, I promise!  The basil plants in the garden are looking slim and I am already missing this new Summer favorite.  Give it a try before the season is over.  My recipe is inspired by Giada De Laurentiis‘ Sweet Basil Smoothie.  I prefer my smoothies to be a little thicker, so I modified a few things and like it very much.  Try either recipe, but you have to try at least one.

  • 1 C fresh basil leaves
  • 1/2 frozen banana
  • 12ish ice cubes (give or take depending on the desired consistency)
  • zest of 1/2 a lime
  • juice of one lime
  • 4 T sugar (start with 2T and go up from there)
  • 1/2 C plain yogurt
  • enough water to make your blender work (just a couple tablespoons should do it)

Throw everything in a blender and frappe it!  Find your prettiest glass (because things are just more fun when they’re in pretty containers), and add a little whip on top to make everything happy.

There you have it, the taste of Summer in a pretty glass with happiness on top.  You could also sub the lime for lemon or orange and the banana for strawberries.

Now that you have your snack taken care of, check out my most recent update for our 30 Minutes for Mommy Bible Study.

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30 Minutes for Mommy: Lesson 3

If this is your first time reading this post, please read past, “30 Minutes for Mommy”, posts to better understand why I am doing this study and why I hope that you will join me.  You can find past posts in the side bar under, “30 Minutes for Mommy”, and, “Bible Women”.

This week we are studying Job’s wife.  Her name isn’t even given in scripture.  There are so few scriptures concerning her that to know her we must know her husband first.  I suggest that we study Job’s life in three sections over three days; before his affliction, during his affliction, and after his affliction.   On the fourth day we can bring it all together and paint a better picture of who his wife was.

Tuesday

We Meet Job (Gen.1:1-5)

Job was a great man in his time, the most wealthy, infact.  He had 7000 sheep, 3000 camels, 500 oxen, 500 she asses, and a very great house.  He was blessed with 10 children, three daughters and seven sons.  It is said that he was perfect and upright, fearing God and turning from evil.  His children appear to have been very close.  We read that each one held a feast ‘in his day’, which is referring to his birthday.  They invited their sisters which implies that it was a family gathering, not a ruckus party.  It isn’t clear if Job and his wife attended these parties, but we do know that Job had knowledge of when the feasts occurred and when they ended because he offered sacrifices following each event.

We are told that he sent and sanctified them and made an offering on each ones behalf because maybe they did too much eating or drinking or got carried away in some manner and may have sinned against God.  Reading over this scripture several times reveals the one flaw that Job may have had.  His worry for his children.  There is no firm proof that his children renounced God, he doesn’t even question them about his concern.  He is just worried that they did and as any overprotective father, he worries and frets and does what he has to do to ease his concern.  It is said that he did this sacrificing continually.  I cannot find how long a sacrifice took, but anything multiplied by 10 is a rather long time, so to do this thing continually would show that he had a great deal of fear that was probably unfounded.

When the Bible refers to Job as being ‘perfect’, it isn’t in the same way as Christ was ‘perfect’.  The Hebrew word for perfect is tam or tamim which means complete, mature, or healthy.  Replacing these words to describe Job makes more sense and allows for him to have a flaw, such as extreme worry.  Satan will later use this as a foothold in the affliction that he executes on Job, which we will discuss tomorrow.

Wednesday

The Plight of Job

Beginning in Job 1:13 and ending in Job 2:8, we can read all that happens to Job, in short his many herds of animals are either stolen or consumed with fire, his children are killed by a great wind during one of their parties, and his own flesh breaks out in painful boils.

In Job 2:9 we find the only recorded words by Job’s wife, “Renounce God and die!”  How terrible a thing to be remembered for!  Maybe she thought he had done something evil and wanted him gone like everything else.  Maybe she didn’t understand why God would allow such trouble to befall her husband and wished him to be out of his misery.  Maybe she was in despair over all the tragedy and simply spoke foolishly, as is stated in Jobs harsh reply to her, (Job 2:10).  In any case, she spoke selfishly and did not have the interests of her husband at hand.

In chapter 3, Job goes into great detail on how badly he wishes he could simply die, or better yet, never be born.  He curses his day, wonders why he did not ‘give up the ghost’ during birth, and takes delight in the day when he can find his grave.  He is in a true state of despair.  He feels nothing but pain and sorrow, if even those feelings still linger.  He is in a deep, dark pit that no one will be able to bring him out of and the selfish, unreassuring words of his wife only make his place worse.

The bulk of the book, chapters 4-31, are discourses between Job and his friends.  Their message to him has the same theme; you have sinned, admit it and get this punishment over with!  There is not much support for Job here, either.  His wife pleads with him to die and now his friends accuse him of some kind of wickedness that requires repenting.  Job maintains his integrity in all of this and continues to bless the name of God, declaring that his Redeemer Lives, and is certain he will see God and God will know him.

Tomorrow, we will talk more about Elihu and the reward Job received.

Thursday

Preparing to See God

Elihu is different from any of the other characters in this story.  He is younger than the rest, very arrogant, and very different in his approach to the situation.  His attitude is that God does not punish because you have done something wrong, but we as humans suffer as a means of being kept humble, or to keep us from sin.  He comes down harshly on Job for justifying himself rather than God.  Elihu reprimands the three friends for not answering Job and keeping their mouths shut.  He boldly states that he will now answer Job and will not hold anything back nor stroke any egos.  In Job 33:8-11 Elihu directly quotes things that Job has said and directly answers these questions.  Elihu states in Job 34:12 that God does not do wicked things nor is He unjust.  Job has not spoken against God or cursed Him, but he has questioned his punishment many times over and maintained his integrity, implying that God is being unfair in some way.  The reason Job was able to argue this point with his friends was because they were not speaking truth and he knew it.  Elihu invites Job to speak , but he can not find words to answer this man because Elihu’s words speak truth.

At this point, I think Job is finally beginning to understand and feel comfort.  The truth Elihu spoke may have stung a little, but that’s the way truth works.  When a person is truly seeking to do right and they are in despair, the stinging truth can bring comfort because the person now knows and understands what must change in order for them to be better.

I believe that Elihu’s purpose was to get Job ready to see and to hear God.  Elihu very beautifully describes the wonders of God in most of chapter 37, and God repeats much of this when He finally speaks to Job in chapters 38-42.  God also says this in Job 40:8;

 Wilt thou even annul my judgment? Wilt thou condemn me, that thou mayest be justified?

 That sounds much like Elihu’s respons to Job in 32:2

…against Job was his wrath kindled, because he justified himself rather than God.

And finally, in 42:7 God lets the three friends know that He is angry with them and that they are to offer a certain sacrifice, but nothing more is said of Elihu.

In the end (Job 42:5-6), Job admits to have heard with his ear, but now he sees with his eyes and repents.  God accepts him and blesses him twice that which he had before.  Even his daughters are now more blessed because they are the most beautiful in the land.  And in all of this, Job’s wife must have felt blessed as well because she bore ten new children for her husband.  Often times we must be humbled before we can receive the blessings God has in store for us.

Tomorrow I will tie all this together and hopefully bring some understanding as to why we had to put so much study into all these men in order to learn a lesson from Job’s wife.

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The Woman Eve

Eve was given the great honor of being “The Mother of All Living”.  She was made from man with the intention of helping him and being his wife.  She was made to be in subjection to him from the beginning, but we know she was not satisfied with this.  Eve is a good example of a woman without God as her focus.  She was easily tempted, easily justified her actions, tried to undermine her husband, and wanted to be like her husband.  When we don’t have God as the focus in our lives, temptation is easy to fall into.  Because of her inability to stand against temptation, we now have an example of what happens when the woman desires to be in authority over her husband.  We can also see the outcome of this rejection of God’s plan in the punishment that followed.  Eve was to endure multiplied sorrow, multiplied conception, and sorrow in bringing forth children and her husband, for participating in the act, was to toil for his food and the ground was cursed for his sake.  The sorrow she was to endure was made apparent through her children.  There is no greater sorrow than for a mother to see one child kill another.  In this one act, she lost two sons.  When we don’t follow God’s plan, not only do we suffer, but our entire family suffers.

Today, we have the advantage of all the examples in the Bible so that we can learn and understand what God wants of us.  We have Christ as our example of a husband (bridegroom) and His church as our example for the wife (bride).  How wonderful to think of being like Christs’ church!  He will always protect her, take care of her, encourage her, and He died for her.  In return, the church is to be in subjection to Christ and do as he commanded.  We know from this study that there are many scriptures that put the woman in subjection to man, but that doesn’t mean we are in a place to be walked on.  Men also should understand their roll and responsibility to women in that they are to be like Christ.

As a woman, it can be very difficult to stay in subjection.  God tells us that our desire will be for the man in Genesis 3:16.  Christ is our example of how to stand against temptation.  He knew how to counter everything Satan said with scripture and was able to stand strong against him.  We need to be reading and studying God’s word daily to keep our minds strong against this temptation.

I don’t think Eve was a bad person or a bad example.  I think she is like many women are today.  She was distracted from her place and endured much sorrow for it.  It is good to remember that even though Eve sinned, God still cared for her.  He clothed Eve and taught her modesty, He gave her another son to replace the one she lost, and she will always have the honor of being the first mother.  This is one of the many examples that shows us that even though we may not always follow God and though we are sinners, He still loves us and cares for us and gives us this hope:

Romans 5:8

But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.                                  

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30 Minutes for Mommy: Lesson 2, week 2

If this is your first time reading this post, please read past, “30 Minutes for Mommy”, posts to better understand why I am doing this study and why I hope that you will join me.  You can find past posts in the side bar under, “30 Minutes for Mommy”, and, “Bible Women”.

This week we will be studying the children of Eve that we know about.  For the first half of the week I would like to look at her sons and then look at her daughters for the last half and wrap up on Friday with a review of who Eve was and what we know about her.

Please remember to reference the online book, A Systematic Study of Bible Women, as this is what is driving this study.

Monday

Cain, Abel, and Seth, the three known sons of Adam and Eve.  This is a well known Sunday school story, but reviewing in depth can bring some interesting facts to light.  I have arranged this table to lay out what we know of these three so that they can be compared and studied easily.  On Tuesday we can discuss what we can learn from them.

Tuesday

A Comparison

In comparing Eve’s three known sons, we can see three different individuals with three different outcomes.  The first was a gardener, the second a shepherd, and the third is unknown.  The first was easily angered, probably had a sense of entitlement, (I say this because of what God said in Gen. 4:6-7), lackadaisical about God’s requirements for an offering, (Gen. 4:3), and was prone to sadness or pity parties, (Gen. 4:5).  The second and third, seemed to be humble; desiring to serve God.  The first had a rather short line that followed him, the second had no line that we know of, and the third was the line of Christ.  The first had no faith, the second and third did.  The first was cursed, the second and third were blessed.  The first son is nearly a polar opposite to the second son and his replacement.  Have you ever seen a family with children that seem direct opposites?  Is it the parent’s fault in some way?  Can it be their fault to an extent, but in the end it is the child’s choice?  I believe that all we can do is lead our children according to God’s will.  We have to keep in mind that our children have free will just like we have and just like Adam and Eve had.  They had a personal relationship with God and walked with Him in the garden and still they disobeyed Him.  It appears that they had repentant hearts and began to follow Him, but I am unsure of a specific verse that says this.  I pray every night that I will raise my children in God’s will and hope this study will bring to my attention more of what I need to be doing as their mother.  This is really all we can do, the rest will be left to the choices of the child and God.

A Verse with Promise

Some say that Prov. 22:6 is the first verse with a promise.  I’m not certain of this claim, but the promise is that if you raise your children in the way they should go, they won’t turn from that path when they are older.  Maybe it is possible that if we train our children to control their will at a young age and develop that habit to be strong enough, then they simply won’t turn from it.  This is where the faith of a parent comes in.  Being a parent can be terrifying when you think of all the sorrow that can come with it.

The Positive in Cain

As far as I can tell, Cain’s lineage lasted only seven generations which is relatively short when you consider the length of many of the Biblical genealogies.  I did point out the negatives of Cain’s line, but I should also point out a few interesting positives.  Gen. 4:17 tells us that when Cain left, he went to Nod and built a city.  Keep in mind that the world was still young.  Cain was quite possibly only the third person to ever be on this earth and he went off and built what is the first mention of a city.  His line was also the first to mention the use of tents, musical instruments, and metal workers.  It is very possible that these sons and grandsons and great grandsons of Cain were the inventors of these invaluable tools that we still use today.  Keep in mind too, that these men lived for hundreds of years.  I bet I could come up with some pretty cool stuff if I live hundreds of years!  Even though, it is still amazing to think of these first for the human race and that they came from the line of Cain.

A Positive for Us

What a wonderful thing for Moses to have given credit to Cain’s line for the production of tents, instruments, metal work, and the development of the first mentioned city.  It could be as simple as relating a history accurately, but it teaches us something as well.  It teaches to look for the good in everything.  The first to murder, the first to participate in polygamy, and the first to build a city, the first to have instruments, and the first to work with metal.  It reminds me of the story of Isaac and Ishmael.  Though Ishmael was not the chose son of Abraham, God still blessed him with a powerful lineage.  I take these stories as reminders to always find the positive in your children.  If we as parents do everything possible to keep our children on the path to God, but they still turn from it, we can take joy in the positive things that they still have and pray always for their return one day, (Lk. 15:11-32, The Prodigal Son).

Wednesday – Thursday

Female Descendants of Eve

The only female descendants of Eve listed before the flood are Adah, Zillah, and Naamah.  Their name meanings are as follows:

ADAH—PLEASURE, GORGEOUSLY ADORNED, BEAUTY, TO REPEAT

ZILLAH—A SHADOW, PROTECTION OR JINGLING OF JEWELRY

NAAMAH—PLEASANT, DELIGHTFUL, BEAUTIFUL

(Some of the above definitions were gathered at abarim-publications.com.  Visit their site for in depth information on these names and many others.)

According to Jewish tradition the meaning of the name usually described the person.  If that is true, this is really the only picture that we can have of these women.  It will also be good to note the names of Adah and Naamah and their meanings for future lessons in this study.

Friday

This brings us to the close of the study of Eve.  I will be putting a final post together for her tomorrow, but for now, what was the most impacting lesson that you learned from the woman, Eve?  Was she really as bad as culture has painted her?  Does she deserve the credit for all the pain and sorrow that we endure today?  What can we learn from her to make us better mothers?  Please let me know as I would really like to know what you have learned during these first few weeks of this very long, extensive study.

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30 Minutes for Mommy: Lesson 2, consequences of The Fall

If this is your first time reading this post, please read, “30 Minutes for Mommy“, to better understand why I am doing this study and why I hope that you will join me.  You can find past posts in the side bar under, “30 Minutes for Mommy”, and, “Bible Women”.  You can join in our study by following this link and clicking on ‘Systematic Study of Bible Women’

Lesson 2 is very long and raised quite a few questions for me.  I am still looking for answers on some of these subjects, and maybe some of you will have ideas to share.  I hope you were able to find answers to all the questions in the study that we are following, a ‘Systematic Study of Bible Women‘. Continue reading

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30 Minutes for Mommy: Lesson 2

If this is your first time reading this post, please read past, “30 Minutes for Mommy”, posts to better understand why I am doing this study and why I hope that you will join me.  You can find past posts in the side bar under, “30 Minutes for Mommy”, and, “Bible Women”.

This section is very long so it may take up to three weeks to get through it.  My goal will be to get through ‘Her Fall and the Results’ this week and ‘Her Children’ next week.  I will answer as many questions and study them as much as my time permits and hope that you will join me.  Please leave comments as you study and learn!  Sharing is the most encouraging part of studying God’s word together! Continue reading

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30 Minutes for Mommy: Lesson 1 complete! Whew!

This was my first week of committing to a Bible study for 30 minutes everyday.  Actually, my 30 minutes every day turned into 30 minutes every day to answer a series of questions and 2 hours ever night to answer all the questions I had about the answers I got for the questions that I answered during the 30 minutes.  I have learned so much though, drawn some thought provoking comparisons, and enjoyed this time very much.  I truly hope that those who are reading this have learned on their own as well as with me.  I hope to have another inspiring study next week as we learn more about Eves’ fall and her children.  I might have to spread that one over two or even three weeks because I can’t keep up with these late nights and early mornings  🙂  If after reading this you decide to study along with me, here is the link for the guide I am following.  If you would like to read the story of the, “Why I chose this guide”, or, “My precious, little blue book”, click hereContinue reading

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30 Minutes for Mommy: Update! and Lesson 1

After much searching I have found it!  My precious, little blue book was recently revised and expanded by Beth Johnson.  I have tried multiple times in different ways to contact the author, but have been unsuccessful.  I will continue to contact her.  Here is the link so that all those with interest can join our study.  There are currently only 31 lessons available online. Continue reading

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