Christians and Lent

Lent is giving up something with a desire to draw closer to the Lord!

Not all Christian churches observe Lent. Lent is mostly observed by the Lutheran, Methodist,Presbyterian and Anglican denominations, and also by Roman Catholics. We are non denominational and although it is not necessary to observe Lent, there is no reason why Christians should not observe Lent if they so choose. It is just another way to remember Jesus and what he has done for us.
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This year my husband and I have decided to participate in Lent…in the sense of…Giving up something that we do every day and replacing it with spending time reading the bible and praying!
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My husband and I are both giving up all drinks accept water, sweets and anger/yelling!! Obviously this is not like giving up, say, a tv show {when the show is on instead of watching you could read the bible or pray} so when I feel my self getting angry I step back and ask God to help me relax. As for giving up sweets and beverages other than water…here is our thinking…sugar tends to make us wired. We find ourselves unable to relax or/and concentrate…enter reading the bible…mind wandering…frustration because you just aren’t getting it! Without those sugary treats and drinks we will both have a easier time focusing!
What is Lent?
Lent is the Christian season of preparation before Easter. Ash Wednesday (2/13/13) marks the first day, or the start of the season of Lent, which begins 40 days prior to Easter (Sundays are not included in the count). {This year Lent is 2/13-3/30
Lent is a time when many Christians prepare for Easter by observing a period of fasting, repentance, moderation and spiritual discipline. The purpose is to set aside time for reflection on Jesus – his suffering and his sacrifice, his life, death, burial and resurrection. My personal thought is: give up something you REALLY like, then when you start thinking about it you instead spend time in the bible! Thus giving up something to draw you closer to the Lord!
Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last, but we do it to get a crown that will last forever. Therefore I do not run like someone running aimlessly; I do not fight like a boxer beating the air. No, I strike a blow to my body and make it my slave so that after I have preached to others, I myself will not be disqualified for the prize.” 1 Corinthians 9:25-27
If you choose to participate
Things you could give up for Lent:
Television (or specific shows or channels)
The radio
Favorite foods (pizza, ice cream, etc.)
Eating out
Alcohol
Soft drinks/caffeine/coffee
Smoking
Clutter
Debt (using credit cards)
Certain books/magazines (read ones that will help you grow spiritually)
Social Media sites (Facebook, Twitter, MySpace, etc.)
Blogging
Negativity/Stress
Gossip
Anger/Yelling
Lying
Swearing/foul language
Addictions
Procrastination
Working overtime (unnecessarily)
After the decision has been made you need to follow through…sometimes that means every single morning you wake up and ask God to help you!
Spend time with God either in prayer or reading the Bible! For example someone who is giving up a particular tv show could spend the time that they would usually be watching it reading the Bible!
You can even get your children involved with these ideas for kids: (Replace something with Family Bible study time)
Television (or certain shows)
Video games
Computer (games, social networking, etc.)
Fighting with siblings
Being disrespectful to parents
Lying
Soft drinks
Sweets/Candy
Like I said at the beginning…choosing to participate in Lent, it a way to draw us closer to the Lord!  Are you participating in Lent? I’d love to hear what changes you are making!
Smiles & Blessings

Book Review – The Beginning Reader’s Bible

This exceptionally illustrated Bible storybook allows children to read the story, pray to God, and grow closer to Him.

Using actual Bible text from the International Children’s Bible® as well as prayers, memory verses, and fun activities, children will love this large format and be engrossed in the intricate detail of the illustrations. Bible stories from the Old and New Testaments are included and stories are accompanied by a prayer for the child to pray, a verse to memorize, and a fun activity to help them grow.

Instead of writing only my review on this Bible story book, I want to have my 6 year old son join in and give his review as well…his input has been added to my review! 🙂

First off, I truly love this Bible, but as a Storybook and this is why…

What I liked:

The books is large and very well made, perfect for small hands

It is very easy to read, and uses actual bible verses. The Story of how God create the earth in in the Beginning Reader’s Bible is the actual text.

The book is beautifully illustrated.

Something that my son and I enjoyed that the stories were more than 3 or 4 sentences. They are actual bible text. He like that this bible and Daddy and Mommy’s bible say the same thing.

Something that we loved was the little info bubbles on each page…containing a memory verse, a fact, a song, or a activity. He love the activates, and the memory verses the best.

My son enjoyed being able to read along with me. He loved being able to read on his own as well! The fact that he can easily grab it a start reading it is a HUGE plus for me and why I am giving it 4 stars!

Ok, so what I wasn’t fond of:

Although the Stories have more than a few sentences, I would have like to seen a bit more substance *note some of the stories were more than one page (this are few, however), I am referring to the other stories that are a half a page*. This is supposed to be for ages 4-8, it seemed to be more of a 3-5 or younger ‘Story Book’ I noticed that my son wanted to hear more, so at the end of each story we usually ended up grabbing our family bible and reading the ‘story’ out of it…which he loved!!

This is more of a “Storybook” than a Bible.

So, with all that being said, All and all I do believe that this would be a great addition to your Childs library. It would also be a great gift for a non-Christian family member or friend with children. Personally I am happy we have this, but we will be getting our son a actual full text Children’s bible.

Reading level: Ages 4-8
Hardcover: 192 pages Publisher: Thomas Nelson (February 15, 2011) Language: English ISBN-10: 1400317029 ISBN-13: 978-1400317028
 
Please note that I was given this book by the publisher in exchange for my honest review.

Book Review – Save the Date

Publisher:
When Alex and Lucy pick out wedding invitations, they wonder if they can be printed in vanishing ink.

Former NFL star Alex Sinclair is a man who has it all–except the votes he needs to win his bid for Congress. Despite their mutual dislike, Alex makes Lucy a proposition: pose as his fiancee in return for the money she desperately needs. Bound to a man who isn’t quite what he seems, Lucy will find her heart on the line–and maybe even her life. When God asks Alex and Lucy to scrap their playbook and follow his rules, will they finally say, “I do”?

What I thought…
I have really enjoyed this book! It the story of a young woman (Lucy) who wonders what is going to happen to her Girls home after she loses funding. She strikes up a deal with a Ex-NFL hero (Alex) who needs Lucy to get elected…Its kind of The Proposal meets Sweet Home Alabama…but with a Christian perspective.
Throughout Save the Date the “agreement” causes a roller coaster of emotions, not only between Alex and Lucy, but Alex and his brother, Lucy and Matt, plus her Grandmother and deceased Father she never knew.
Lucy finds her self surprised when the things don’t turn out the way she assumed they would. Lucy seeks the Lord’s guidance through the book…and finds her self surprised at who else is seeking the Lord as well!
At the beginning Save the Date talks about how Lucy runs a girls home for young women who have been in the foster care system, but are now 18 and have no where to go…expect Saving Grace. Saving Grace is a big part of this book and I really like that, all too often I read a book where the main woman is kind of a blur…who is she, does she have friends? a job? Jenny B. Jones did a wonderful job making Lucy feel like a friend! Alex…I actually really liked Alex from the beginning. He was rough and hard around the edges, but I knew something great was on its way! He’s a twin, which I like, since I have twins.
Save the Date is funny, Witty, and keeps you wondering what is going to happen…all the while surprising you! I would highly recommend this book!!
ISBN: 1595545395
Page Count: 320
Retail Price: $14.99

Please note that I was given Save the Date for free from the Publisher in exchange for a honest review!

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Mama Britni