How Should Christians Respond to Change? (May)

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By Charity S.

Change—it is an event that we either love or shrink from, either facing it with excitement or fright. Nothing else can turn our lives upside down like change can and nothing can better our lives like change does.

Yet still, many of us fear it and even hide from it.

But is that really a reasonable response?

People who look at my life may wonder why I think I have a right to talk about change. I’ve grown up in a Godly, homeschooling family all my life and I’ve lived in the same house for ten years. We stick with a daily schedule, and go to church every Sunday. In short, I have a very structured life, one that some people might consider monotonous.

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But recently, a change has entered my life. I saw it coming, thought I was prepared; but now that it’s happened, I’m not so sure I really was.

Three days ago my older sister, who has been here for all eighteen years of my life, got married. I’m so happy for her and her husband; they truly are a perfect couple. But now I have to adjust to no longer having her in the house. There’s one less person at the table for meals and only three sisters sharing a bedroom. It feels somewhat lonely. Yet it is still a joyous change, one that I wouldn’t undo; but it is change nonetheless.

Before something like this happens, I am often excited. I like new experiences and I look forward to seeing what will happen; but this time, now that the change has come, my enthusiasm has dwindled and even though I am truly joyful over what has happened, a secret part of me wishes that things were the same. But is that really what God would have me do? Do we as Christians have any reason to be sad at change?

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If I was just going to be practical about this, I’d say no and perhaps quote the familiar saying, “There’s no use crying over spilled milk.” What’s done is done and must stay as it is. But I guarantee you that if you said this to someone struggling with recent change, they would consider you insensitive and rude. I’m pretty sure I wouldn’t appreciate it very much.

But what if you maybe quoted words that are a little more lasting, such as “For I am the LORD, I change not” (Malachi 3:6)?

Those words are so substantial that I don’t know that a Christian would really need any other comfort besides that. It’s as though God is saying, “Things and people may change around you, but I am forever, always unchanging.” In the midst of chaos, He is there, the only clear image in a blur of uncertainty. His love is always just as abundant; His forgiveness is always extended towards us. In short, everything changes except for God and so nothing really matters except for God.

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“His love is always just as abundant; His forgiveness is always extended towards us. In short, everything changes except for God and so nothing really matters except for God.”

Another possible comfort for change is one that I often remind myself of. I like to say that seasons of life come and go but they just keep getting better. If this change is God’s will, it must be better than the old season of life. If we could rebel and keep things the same, we would be fighting against God’s will which would be sin; and obviously, not sinning against God is best. He promises:

 “All things work together for good to them that love God,
to them who are the called according to his purpose.”
(Romans 8:28)
“He which hath begun a good work in you will
perform it until the day of Jesus Christ.”

(Philippians 1:6)

I believe that God’s got a special plan for each of our lives and because He is a loving and all-knowing God, He will always lead us up a path that is best for us. He is leading us forward to the next stage of life because the old stage is worn out and it is time for something new; but if we keep holding onto the past, it’s really rebellion against God.

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Life, and the change that comes hand in hand with it, can be frightening and saddening at times. But it doesn’t have to be; it doesn’t need to be. The Christian life is based on change:

“Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.”
(2 Corinthians 5:17)

Change is only God’s way of making our lives better, by keeping us on the path that He made us for. And so, when change enters your life, there’s no sense in being sadly reminiscent. The only reasonable response is excitement to see what God’s got in store.

Delight thyself also in the LORD; and he shall give thee the desires of thine heart. Commit thy way unto the LORD; trust also in him; and he shall bring it to pass.”
(Psalm 37:4-5)

By Charity 
who lives with her parents and sisters. She enjoys writing, teaching her sisters writing, and making music.

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How’s Your Thought Life?

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Follow-Up from Sarah Hayne’s Session at the
Joyful Daughters Conference

What Are You Thinking?

by Mrs. Sarah Haynes

For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war after the flesh: (For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds;) Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ.” (II Corinthians 10:3-5)

Every day, countless thoughts pass through our minds. It has been said that thoughts are like a steering wheel. You would be surprised at the sins you will land in if you don’t pay attention to the steering wheel!

The principle of sowing and reaping is true in our thought-life. If we sow thoughts that are pleasing to the Lord, then we will reap a life that is pleasing to Him as well.

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The enemy’s desire is to conquer and control your thought life, and then make it a citadel from which he can war against God. But, when God saved you, He gave you the mind of Christ (1 Corinthians 2:16).

We are constantly facing a battle of the mind. We must wage this war with the sword of God’s Word. Temptations and lies are ever at our mind’s door.

If you are not thinking something right, you are probably thinking something wrong!

Lie

Truth

I am alone Hebrews 13:5
I am worth more if… Zephaniah 3:17
God is holding out on me Romans 8:28
God should fix my problems 2 Corinthians 12:9
I have my rights Galatians 2:20, Romans 12:1-2
My security is found in __________ Isaiah 40:8, John 6:27
I’m worried about my future John 6:25
I should not have to live with unfulfilled longings Colossians 3:2
I can’t control emotions Proverbs 16:32
I am a loser Romans 8:1
Put OFF Lies 

Put ON God’s Truth!
Be a faithful steward of your mind!
So what are our weapons in this warfare?
  • Be in the Word so that when a sinful thought enters our mind (a temptation), we will be able to recognize it for what it is and know what course to take.
  • Memorize the Word. If we are aware of a certain area of constant temptation (worry, lust, anger, etc.), we need to study and memorize key passages that deal with those issues.
  • Meditate on the Lord and His Word.
  • Watch and pray, that ye enter not into temptation: the spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak. (Matt. 26:41)

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Session Follow up: Practical Application

Take a minute right now and evaluate how your thought life has been this past week. What have most of your thoughts been centered around? Is it God’s truth and His Word – or something else?

You will find it very helpful to take a week long fast/break from social media, books, or anything else that may be a distraction or even temptation for your thought life. During this week, set aside more time to spend with the Lord and immerse your mind in His truth.

Memorize the suggested verses below and study Philippians 4:8 in depth. What exactly does it mean when it says think on things that are pure, lovely, virtuous, true? And how can this apply to you personally?

As you study this passage, you will learn to more quickly recognize a thought that is not in accordance with God’s will for you. When you recognize a sinful thought, then take it captive immediately!

Then turn your mind to things above!

“If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God. Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth. For ye are dead, and your life is hid with Christ in God.” (Colossians 3:1-3)

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Scriptures to Ponder and Memorize

“Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.” (Philippians 4:8)

For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war after the flesh: (For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds;) Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ.” (II Corinthians 10:3-5)

Personal Evaluative Questions

  • What fills the majority of my thoughts? Social media, a friend, an event, a temptation, etc.?
  • Is there something I am doing or listening to that is feeding fleshly or impure thoughts in my mind?
  • Did I spend time with the Lord today in His Word?
  • Have I noticed a particular time of the day – or month, or year – that I struggle more with maintaining pure thoughts? How can I prepare myself for this time of weakness? Are there Scriptures I can memorize to be ready for the battle?
  • Am I guarding my eyes and what I am putting into my mind?
  • Have I asked the Lord to help me guard my mind, that my life would be pleasing to Him?
“For as he thinketh in his heart, so is he.” (Proverbs 23:7)

Did you miss it?

Audio recordings of the conference sessions are now available!JD Conference Play Album

Join us this month in seeking the Lord!

Key Qualities of Being a Godly Sister

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Follow-Up from Rebekah’s Session
at the Joyful Daughters Conference

Four Key Qualities of Being a Godly Sister

by Rebekah Parish

 Finally, be ye all of one mind, having compassion one of another, love as brethren, be pitiful, be courteous.
(1 Peter 3:8)

No matter what, we are going to influence our siblings–either towards the Lord and His ways, or away from Him. As sisters, we have the exciting opportunity to deeply and eternally impact our siblings’ walk with the Lord . . . and bear MUCH fruit to His glory!

However, trying to do anything for the Lord on our own will only end in failure.  All our strength and ability to love our brothers and sisters must come from Christ, our Source.  It is HE Who works in us both to will and to do His good pleasure (paraphrased from Phil. 2:13)! It takes daily investment in our relationship with Jesus for us to be able to invest Jesus into our sibling relationships.

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The “Four Be’s” are four character qualities of a sister who has a wide, Godly influence.  We talked about the importance and beauty of these four qualities in our daily interactions with our siblings:

  • Be Sensitive

Have a quick and delicate understanding of others’ feelings. Being glad for good things they experience or grieve/hurt with them. Try to be all there. Put their interests above our own. Little siblings are little people in progress. Look deep in their eyes, really listen to them. Think of when I was their age. Recognize differences as God’s intent and purpose. Affirm different experiences/interests. Also quiet. Brothers – respect space, let them work through things. Be creative. Not adding to spiritual struggles – on their side. Be willing to give up freedoms so they can grow. Pray for wisdom. Serve together.

  • Be Humble

…that others might see Jesus in us, more than the fact that we are “right.” Quietly search our heart and have perfect quietness there – expect nothing, be at peace. Jesus is the perfect example of flawless humility. Jesus’ perfection, only ambition, concerned about Father’s will. 

  • Be Uplifting

They too have battles/decisions up against them. Be messengers of His love and truth. Selflessly set our own needs & interests aside. Live each day joyfully. Support them. Bring needs to the Lord in prayer. Enthusiastically cheer them on in the gifts He’s given them. 1) Stayed in constant fellowship with Father, 2) let go of own needs/desires/interests. Younger siblings: little things, praise. Notice them and be aware of their needs. Sisters: don’t belittle them, treat like our own age, be open and available with them. Brothers: respect them and give them more and more responsibility. Don’t crush their confidence. Choose encouragement more than criticism.

  • Be Faithful

Opportunities are going to arise. Hypocrisy ruins. Are we doing things we tell them not to do? Our siblings see the real us. Do I talk about the Lord in everyday settings? God’s love is unconditional. The Lord’s purpose is in the process. It isn’t about making no mistakes, but letting the Lord fill us with His strength.

This is how we model Christ!

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Session Follow up: Practical Application

Take a moment to CONSIDER each of your siblings’ hearts, and IDENTIFY what they most need today.

  • Maybe it’s encouragement,
  • a listening ear,
  • respect,
  • humble repentance or forgiveness from you,
  • praise,
  • a few minutes of your full attention,
  • or loving prayers for their growth in Jesus.

Then ask the Lord to help you every day to be sensitive to His voice laying your siblings’ needs on your heart . . . and be obedient to it!

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Scripture to Ponder and Memorize

“With all lowliness and meekness, with longsuffering, forbearing one another in love; Endeavouring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.” (Ephesians 4:2-3)

Personal Evaluative Questions

  • Am I driven by a deep desire to plant many seeds of Jesus’ love and truth in my brothers’ and sisters’ hearts?
  • What are some of the rewards of being humble in my interactions with my brothers and sisters?
  • If one of my siblings were to describe me to someone else based on the words that come out of my mouth on a daily basis, would he/she say I was an uplifting sister, or a negative, sour one?
  • Am I valuing my time, a hobby or an activity I enjoy above my brothers and sisters, or is it clear to them that I treasure them above my other interests?
  • How could I be a better example to them of Jesus’ faithful obedience to the Father?

If you would like to hear Rebekah’s entire session,
it is now available for download.

Did you miss it?

Audio recordings of the conference sessions are now available for download!

JD Conference Play Album

Pictures of KBR’s Joyful Daughters Conference are now online. We will continue to post follow-up notes from conference sessions in coming weeks on this forum—stay tuned!

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Join us this month in seeking the Lord:

Do You Honor Your Parents from the Heart?

Follow-Up from Tiffany’s Session
at the Joyful Daughters Conference

Do You Honor Your Parents from the Heart?

by Tiffany Schlichter

 “Honour thy father and thy mother, as the LORD thy God hath commanded thee; that thy days may be prolonged, and that it may go well with thee, in the land which the LORD thy God giveth thee.”
(Deuteronomy 5:16)

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The biblical command to honor our parents (Ex. 20:12, Deut. 5:16) promises blessings, but true honor must come from the heart.

O that there were such an heart in them, that they would fear me, and keep all my commandments always, that it might be well with them, and with their children for ever!” (Deuteronomy 5:29)

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What is in our heart is manifested in our actions; therefore, when this honor penetrates our heart, there will be a natural overflow of honoring actions toward our parents in large and small ways.

As we genuinely treasure our parents, we will find that honoring them becomes a true delight. This becomes possible when we ask the Lord to transform our heart and to fill us with His love and righteousness.

  • Honor from the heart (Deut. 5:16, Prov 4:1-4)
  • Opportunities for honor (Prov. 21:2, Prov. 17:9)
  • Never enough ways to honor
  • Open our hearts to true honor
  • Remember the goal – honor from the heart

Be best friends with your parents. Chose to honor them; joy will follow!

Show humility; honor their small preferences. Asking forgiveness shows we care. Submission to our parents is a choice. We might not always agree with our parents, but we can always honor. We help our siblings to honor our parents by how we talk about them even when they are not around. Pray Scriptures for your parents.

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Session Follow up – Practical Application

Gratitude is an essential building block for true honor. Make a list of what your life would look like if it weren’t for your parents’ role in your life.

Take time to express gratitude to them for raising and loving you.

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Scripture to Ponder and Memorize

”The father of the righteous shall greatly rejoice: and he that begetteth a wise child shall have joy of him. Thy father and thy mother shall be glad, and she that bare thee shall rejoice. My son, give me thine heart, and let thine eyes observe my ways.” (Proverbs 23:24-26)

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Personal Evaluative Questions

  • What sins are hindering me from honoring my parents from my heart (pride, selfishness, etc.)?
  • Do I resent their protection or do I thank the Lord for that gift?
  • How can I seek to honor my parents in ‘little things’?
  • What is one way I can be of practical assistance to my parents on a daily basis?
  • How will my choices regarding my relationship with my parents affect my future children?

If you would like to hear Tiffany’s entire session,
it is now available for download.

Did you miss it?

Audio recordings of the conference sessions are now available for download!

JD Conference Play Album

Pictures of KBR’s Joyful Daughters Conference are now online. We will continue to post follow-up notes from conference sessions in coming weeks on this forum—stay tuned!

slider_kbr conference 2015

Join us this month in seeking the Lord:

A Life-Changing Relationship (April)

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by Sarah L. Bryant

Dear Sisters,

Last week, at KBR’s Joyful Daughters Conference, it was such a blessing to meet many of you and to seek the Lord during our time together! I was blessed by each of you who attended. From the fellowship with like-minded believers, to the many sessions by young ladies and Titus 2 mothers — I was challenged in my walk with the Lord!

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There was so much wisdom shared in the sessions during the two days together — I have been trying to review what speakers shared to help it soak into my heart. I thought that to help us all digest what we heard, we could review main points from the sessions, in the next couple weeks on KBR’s forum. For those of you who were not able to attend the Joyful Daughters conference in person, this will also give you an opportunity to glean with us.

The conference’s opening session focused on the importance of seeking the Lord NOW – in our youth. I would like to share some of the main points that I gave in this session, with some practical thoughts on how to incorporate them.

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Seeking the Lord—a Life-Changing Relationship

by Sarah L. Bryant

Now set your heart and your soul to seek the LORD your God.”
(1 Chronicles 22:19)

What is most important to you in this whole world? What is your deepest desire?

Is it knowing the Lord and walking with Him?

Seeking the Lord is the most important thing we can do. This relationship with our heavenly Father will bear fruit for the rest of our lives and throughout eternity!

If we love Jesus…seeking and knowing Him will be a delight, not a chore!

When we realize all that Jesus Christ has done for us in salvation, then our deepest desire will become to know Him better. And as we seek Him, we are transformed day by day into His glorious image. I love 2 Corinthians 3:18—

“We all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord.”

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So, practically, what are some ways that we can be seeking the Lord God? How can we be striving to know Him better?

In this session, we shared five ways to seek the Lord…

  • Spend time with Him daily (Psalm 119:2)
  • Memorize His Word (Psalm 119:11)
  • Surround yourself with His Word (Deut.11:18,20)
  • Meditate on Him & His works (Psalm 77:12)
  • Talk with the Lord in prayer (Heb. 4:16)
  • Honor His special day (Isaiah 58:13,14)

I would like to share some practical ideas for how to apply a few of these points this next month!

Start a Bible study with your mom and sister(s)

Pick one specific topic to study in God’s Word this new month. If your mom and/or sisters would like to join you, that is all the better!

Here are some sample things you could look up or study….

  • An attribute of God
  • God’s commands to believers in a certain book of the Bible
  • Justification / sanctification / predestination, etc.
  • Proverbs’ wisdom concerning a wise tongue, a godly woman, training children, etc.

I recently did a study in the book of I John of the marks of a true Christian. This is what I found: a Christian….

  • Walks in the Light/Truth I John 1:7
  • Recognizes her sins I John 1:8
  • Confesses her sins I John 1:9
  • Keeps God’s commands I John 3:24
  • Loves one another I John 3:10,14
  • Loves NOT the world I John 2:15

KBR is actually hosting a “Seek the Lord” challenge this month (April) – this would be the perfect time to join us as we study God’s Word together!

Memorize Scripture with a friend

Did you make a new friend at the conference? Ask her to be your accountability partner and memorize a Bible chapter with you this summer. Call each other every few weeks to recite what you have memorized. A great passage to begin with is Psalm 1 or 25.

Be creative – surround yourself with God’s Word

How many Bible verses do you have visible in your bedroom? Write out some verses that the Lord has used to encourage you and hang them on your wall or mirror! Be creative about putting God’s precious Word before you all day long.

Invest time in prayer

How much time do you currently devote to praying each day? This is one of the most powerful parts of your spiritual life. Strive to develop a habit of praying at least five minutes a day—starting tonight.

It may be hard to begin with, but  as the days go by and you discipline your mind to prayer, you will begin to DELIGHT in this time with Jesus!

“No man [or woman] is greater than his prayer life… We have many organizers, but few agonizers; many players and payers, few pray-ers; many singers, few clingers; lots of pastors, few wrestlers; many fears, few tears; much fashion, little passion; many interferers, few intercessors; many writers, but few fighters. Failing here, we fail everywhere.” – Leonard Ravenhill

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In closing, let’s remember…

We must cultivate our walk with the Lord! It will not just happen! We must be committed to seeking Jesus — but we will NEVER regret ONE moment spent with Him!

And the exciting thing is that the more we know God, the more we will love Him!

I truly have found that the more I learn about my dear Heavenly Father every day—the more my heart grows to love Him. He is so worthy of my every praise and adoration and worship, just because He is SO GOOD!

So, my dear friends, I invite you to join me in seeking Jesus each day. Will you make knowing Jesus your greatest goal and deepest desire?

In one year from now, your life will bear the fruit of your walk with Jesus. Start planting spiritual seeds today!

“For he satisfieth the longing soul, and filleth the hungry soul with goodness.” (Psalm 107:9)

Grateful for the privilege of seeking Him together,
Sarah Lee Bryant

Did you miss it?

Pictures of KBR’s Joyful Daughters Conference are now online. We will be posting notes from sessions in coming weeks on this forum—stay tuned!

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Join us this month in seeking the Lord:

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