31 Bible Verses for Families Affected By Cancer

Cancer. This word brings so many emotions when it is used in the same sentence as the name of someone you love and hold dear. It isn't a stranger to me by no means, as it has taken the lives of several family members and friends and we have known it to be beat by many as well. It is during these times, when cancer is mentioned, that we all desire some positive thinking, so why not use Bible verses for families affected by cancer? We use Bible verses for all parts of our lives, all the more reason to use them now.

In February 2015, we heard this word in the same sentences as my dad. I won't lie, my earth felt like it was falling out from underneath me and the 400 miles that separates us feels like thousands. Add that with the words ‘inoperable’ or ‘incurable‘ and things start to spin in your mind and fear grips your heart and our mind races at such a high speed.

It was in this time of overwhelmed concern that a friend stated, “Cancer isn't a death sentence.”  It was the thing that made me look at my faith and stand on the scriptures that I know to be true and need as my encouragement.

31 Bible Verses for Families Affected by Cancer | www.joyinthehome.com

31 Bible Verses for Families Affected by Cancer

Matthew 10:30-31 – And even the very hairs of your head are all numbered. So don’t be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows.

Isaiah 41:10 – So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.

Proverbs 17:22 – A cheerful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones.

A cheerful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones. | www.joyinthehome.com

Psalms 62:6-8 – Truly he is my rock and my salvation; he is my fortress, I will not be shaken.My salvation and my honor depend on God; he is my mighty rock, my refuge. Trust in him at all times, you people; pour out your hearts to him, for God is our refuge.

Exodus 14:14 – The Lord will fight for you; you need only to be still.

Proverbs 18:21 – The tongue has the power of life and death, and those who love it will eat its fruit.

Deuteronomy 31:6  …Be strong and courageous. Do not fear or be in dread of them, for it is the Lord your God who goes with you. He will not leave you or forsake you.

Jeremiah 29:11 – For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.

Psalms 55:22 – Cast your cares on the Lord and he will sustain you; he will never let the righteous be shaken.

I Peter 5:7 – Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.

Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you. I Peter 5:7 | www.joyinthehome.com

Isaiah 58:8-9 – Then your light will break forth like the dawn, and your healing will quickly appear; then your righteousness will go before you, and the glory of the Lord will be your rear guard. Then you will call, and the Lord will answer; you will cry for help, and he will say: Here am I.

Malachi 4:2 – But for you who revere my name, the sun of righteousness will rise with healing in its rays. And you will go out and frolic like well-fed calves.

Psalms 138:3 – On the day I called, you answered me; my strength of soul you increased.

Romans 15:4 – For everything that was written in the past was written to teach us, so that through the endurance taught in the Scriptures and the encouragement they provide we might have hope.

Psalms 103:2-4 – Praise the Lord, my soul, and forget not all his benefits— who forgives all your sins and heals all your diseases, who redeems your life from the pit and crowns you with love and compassion

Romans 8:28 – And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.

Matthew 11:28-29 – Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.

Psalms 33:20-22 – Our soul waits for the LORD; he is our help and our shield. For our heart is glad in him, because we trust in his holy name. Let your steadfast love, O LORD, be upon us, even as we hope in you.

Psalms 34:9 – Fear the Lord, you his holy people, for those who fear him lack nothing.

Psalms 46:1-3 – God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea, though its waters roar and foam and the mountains quake with their surging.

Hebrews 11:1 – Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.

Hebrews 11:1 | www.joyinthehome.com

Matthew 17:20 – “Because you have so little faith. Truly I tell you, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you.”

James 1:3 – because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance.

James 5:13-14 – Is anyone among you in trouble? Let them pray. Is anyone happy? Let them sing songs of praise. Is anyone among you sick? Let them call the elders of the church to pray over them and anoint them with oil in the name of the Lord.

Hebrews 11:6 – And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him

I Peter 1:21 – Through him you believe in God, who raised him from the dead and glorified him, and so your faith and hope are in God.

I Peter 4:19 – So then, those who suffer according to God’s will should commit themselves to their faithful Creator and continue to do good.

Romans 10:17 – Consequently, faith comes from hearing the message, and the message is heard through the word about Christ.

I Corinthians 2:4-5 – My message and my preaching were not with wise and persuasive words, but with a demonstration of the Spirit’s power,so that your faith might not rest on human wisdom, but on God’s power.

2 Corinthians 1:3-4 – Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our affliction, so that we may be able to comfort those who are in any affliction, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God.

Philippians 4:8 – 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.

I hope these verses build your faith, as they are building mine!

Staying Positive During Cancer

I've heard it said that fighting cancer takes 90% positive thinking and 10% plan of attack.

I know how true that has been in my Dad's fight against cancer. I wanted to help my readers learn how our family has discovered how to stay positive during cancer, even when we thought our Dad was slipping away.

I pulled 9 things we have been doing into one FREE resource to help others on their fight against cancer.

Here's a free download that can help you, or a loved one, stay positive during cancer.

Staying Positive During Cancer | Joy in the Home

 

Cancer Resources

Are you looking for more resources to help you during a cancer trial? If so, these resources may help you as well.

In the beginning of December 2016, I was sick in bed with a high fever when I got a phone call from my parents. They asked me to three way my youngest sister because my other siblings were working and they had something to tell us.

Once my sister was on the phone with us, my parents began to tell us that my Dad was given 4-6 weeks to live and that hospice was the next step.

I can't even begin to explain the grief that shock me to the core. I muffled my cries, attempting to stay strong and positive for my parents and my devasted sister that was bawling.

The moment I got off the phone, I cried until I had no more tears.

My sickness kept me in bed for a few days and I spent the first 36 hours after that call manufacturing tears on the slight thought of my Dad's grime death sentence. I was spiraling into depression and feeling hopeless.

I'm the type of person that finds the silver lining in everything, so my family didn't know how to help me.

That is when I recommended my verses above. I began to use them to overcome my grief again and it worked.

Journaling Through Cancer - Proven to help the mental part of this difficult journey. Learn more about how to do it for a positive outlook. | www.joyinthehome.com

I started to remember the power of journaling, as I began to feel the power of positive thinking returning into my own life. I knew that journaling through cancer was something that would help us in that place.

Still sick with the flu, I called my daughter who does my book designs into my room. I told her I wanted to create a journal for those who are dealing with cancer and give it as gifts to my family for Christmas, as we faced losing our father and husband.

We started pouring our attention in creating a cancer journal for myself, and my family, as well as families touched by cancer. My children were all helping me find the right quotes on health and healing to fill these pages, while my daughter went to work putting it all into a journal that was building our faith in the process.

Before I did, I knew that my Mom was exhausted with the care of my father. I wanted to relieve her stress so she could spend time just being with him.

I excepted the offer of help from two of my friends and we went to work on creating freezer meals for my mom to just put in her crock pot in the morning. I wanted to do all I could for both of them but the 400 miles between us proved a challenge and this was a way that I could accomplish this.

7 Ways to Help Those Battling Cancer Twitter
Other friends started pouring their love on me, asking how they could help. It was through this out pouring that I created a list of things for people to help those battling cancer.

We had decided that I was going to head to my parents on my own and spend some time with them, helping my mom where I could, while my husband and children joined me a few days before Christmas.

Before I left to go to my parents, the journal was done but I still needed to proof the printed copy before it was available for other families like ours that were hit with the fears of cancer. I ordered enough copies to help us through what felt like a ticking time bomb for my father.

I arrived to my parents and filled their freeze with the labor of love of friends and myself for our parents and awaiting the package of love from my own family that we all desperately needed.The 31 Days of Journaling Through Cancer arrived at my parent's house for my approval and I had tears running down my face, as I handed my parent's their own copy first.

cancer3dcover

They were so emotional and thankful for the act of love.

Over the next few days, as I had to rush my Dad to the emergency room in the middle of the night, our family spoke the verses and quotes to each other for encouragement and faith building.

As we celebrated Christmas day, with my Dad asleep in his chair highly medicated for pain, we sat around him discussed just how these words were going to help us through this trial.

When my Dad finally woke up but still obviously feeling the effects of the drugs because his speech was slow and his head drooping, he told us that he wasn't done fighting.

My Dad is still with us and his tumor is shrinking as our faith is growing.

Most days he goes without his oxygen and is even doing home improvements around the house when he has the energy.

We know that one day will come when we will have to say a final goodbye to my Dad, but when we do, we will know that our faith fought the battle when doctors gave up home and set him home with medicine to make it easier on his passing.

If you or your loved one isn't ready to give up your cancer fight, I want to encourage you to use journaling to fight cancer with positive thinking but sometimes it does work.

31 Bible Verses for Families Affected by Cancer

A Year Schedule for Family Charity Fun

Does you family desire to participate in family charities? Our family has some ideas that will allow you to focus on one charity a month for a full year schedule for family charity fun.

A Year Schedule for Family Charity Fun - Raise children that think about their community and helping those that are less fortunate with these easy ways to make a big difference. | www.joyinthehome.com

A Year Schedule for Family Charity Fun

January

Sole Hope – This is an organization that would be a great way to get your family and friends together to cut out the patterns for shoes for children suffering with foot problems in Africa just because they do not have shoes to wear. A simple solution that requires willing people to use their old denim for a good cause.

February

Red Cross – The first on the scenes of helping for those who have lost so much. There are so many ways to get involved as a family.

March

Food for the Hungry – Offering short and long term help for the poor around world is always a good thing. Find ways to get involved and make a difference.

April

Blood: Water – Learn how to help those who do not have fresh water.  Make a stand with a Lemonade Stand to raise money to conquer the need for fresh water.

May

Project 143 – Host an orphan for 4-10 weeks during summer or over Christmas. Make a difference in the life of orphans in several countries. These children are available for adoption, but even several weeks of hosting could make an impact in their lives forever.

June

Habitat for Humanity – What a great opportunity to get involved with an international charity that rebuilds those who were hit by catastrophes.

July

Palawan Door of Hope – Raise money to sponsor an orphan child in Palawan, Philippines.  It only cost $25 a month to care for the basic needs of a child, including meals and education.  Collecting coins, eliminating an out to eat meal or asking family and friends to participate with $5 to $25 donations can help raise enough money for a full year sponsorship.

August

Help One Now – Serving to help orphans and slaves, among a few of their focuses, you can find ways to be involved in making a difference with your own gifts and talents. Host your own yard sale to raise money for this great charity.

September

Salvation Army – Your family can donate many items to help those with less in your area. You can even volunteer to ring the bells at Christmas!

October

Meals on Wheels – This is a great opportunity to help those who are shut in their homes and unable to get out for the necessities of food.

November

Operation Christmas Child is a well known organization that focuses on providing one box, one child, one time for orphans around the world. You can host your own box filling event or just fill out one or two boxes as a family, including doing it online.

December

Christmas Angel Tree – A branch of the Salvation Army, this is a great opportunity for your children to think about other children who have less.

 

25 Ways to Bring Christ into Your December Homeschool

For many homeschooling families, they break from the normal homeschool routines to bring Christ into their December Homeschool, usually with more of an Advent focus. There are many ways that we can have a more Christ-centered Christmas through homeschool. This list is to inspire you to make the most of your December homeschool with family oriented days that will be easy to bring Christ into your days all December long.

25 Ways to Bring Christ into Your December Homeschool | www.joyinthehome.com

25 Ways to Bring Christ into Your December Homeschool

  1. Study Christmas Hymns – Learn the stories behind the Christmas songs we all love can be a wonderful month long study that will easily bring a Christ-centered Christmas to all of your family. I would recommend Stories Behind the Best-Loved Songs of Christmas, More Stories Behind the Best-Loved Songs of Christmas and Gloria, A Christmas Hymn Study. This could be a wonderful way to spend the last 30 minutes or so of a day, cuddled with your family, before tucking the kids in bed.
  2. Make Christmas Goodies for Neighbors, Elderly and Shut-ins – We all make Christmas goodies, often times too much. Showing Christ in December can be easy when you bless others with some as well. Think beyond your family and friends, and consider blessing your neighbors, elderly from church and don't forget those who are shut-in their homes because of health reasons. I saw a fun way to package cookies using a Pringles can and thought this would be the perfect way to share our Christmas goodies this year. You can spend the day baking cookies and doing crafts to bless others later that day. Have the child see if they can double or triple the recipe for some math practice.
  3. Make Homemade Christmas Cards for Family and Friends – Children love crafts, so why not have a day where they make homemade Christmas cards for their closest friends and family members. While they are making their cards, you can work on your list of Christmas cards. I love Shutterfly for Christmas cards! I can get our Christmas photo put right on them, plus I can have them send my cards straight to my list of family and friends.
  4. Write a Family Newsletter – Creating a yearly newsletter where each person shares a paragraph of their highlights for the year. Once everyone has their final draft of their paragraph, just add them together to create a fun family newsletter to let family and friends know what is going on in your life. Don't tell the kids that they are working on their writing skills!
  5. Clean Out the Toys and Clothes for Donation – Most children receive new toys and clothes for Christmas. Take the time before their new gifts arrive to declutter and organize their rooms, while putting the focus on children who do not have as much. Once you are done, take a family trip to the local charity organizations for your donations. Removing them quickly will really help the younger children.
  6. Go Christmas Caroling – This wonderful tradition is not practiced enough. We did this a few years ago, in our neighborhood. We had a group of friends that came together at our home and we constructed cookie trays with a card. We visited about 12 homes on a very cold night the week of Christmas and sang until someone came to the door. Our neighborhood loved it and we were able to meet some new people we would otherwise not have taken the time to introduce ourselves. Our neighbors mentioned it the next year and seemed disappointed we didn't do it again.
  7. Organize a Winter Coat, Hat and Glove Drive – To get your family excited about this opportunity to bless others, I would recommend you read Gideon's Gift. Then start asking your church, neighbors and going through your own closets to collect winter coats, hats and gloves for the homeless. There are many organizations that deliver these to those in need.
  8. Spend a Day Reading Picture Books – I love picture books, but there is nothing like Christmas picture books for our family. I have a list of my favorite books that I have read over the years to my children and would recommend you starting this tradition. Grab some tissues, cuddle and read!
  9. Host a Birthday Party for Jesus – There is nothing so special than to take time to put your children's attention to celebrating the birth of Jesus. You can start the birthday party with The King is Born, read Luke 2 and talk about Him being the light of the world, as you all blow out the candle on your own cupcake, to symbolize that Jesus is here for all of us.
  10. Do an Advent Activity Daily – You would love Truth in the Tinsel for your little ones! Each day has an Advent activity that is part of the nativity story.
  11. Read Advent Focused Books – Our family has loved the trio series for Advent reading: Jotham's Journey, Bartholomew's Passage, and Tabitha's Travels.
  12. Watching Christmas Movies that Motivate Good Things – Christmas movies are all over the television in December. I have a list of some of my favorite Christmas family movies that teach thinking about other things. I also have some of my favorite Christmas movies for my younger children.
  13. Create a Jesse Tree – We have never done a Jesse Tree, but the concept is a great idea. Here is a Jesse Tree study that may be a great fit for your family.
  14. Participate in a Christmas Choir or Play – Get your whole family involved in a Christmas choir or play that will have them memorizing for a Christ-centered Christmas.
  15. Write a Letter to Jesus – You have heard about writing a letter to Santa, but have you had your children write a letter to Jesus? You could have them thank Him for his blessings, tell Him how much they love them, write what they want to do for Him and even what they desire from Him. Your church can host a Letter to Jesus drive with a box for the kids to drop their letters in each Sunday of the month of December.
  16. Study Gifts in the Bible – I created a free printable for a study on what the Bible says about ‘gifts'. You can use these as memory verses or just as discussion verses through the month of December.
  17. Go on a Nativity Scavenger Hunt – We love to go Christmas light looking. We turned this loved family tradition into a meaningful Nativity scavenger hunt. Get your free printable to go on your own!
  18. Host a Cookie Decorating PartyCookie decorating is a family tradition for our family, but we switched it up a few years ago to have a more Christ-centered Christmas with using nativity cookie cutters.
  19. Children Create a Skit for the Nativity – Have a homemade skit of Luke 2, where the children dress up and construct their own skit for you and your spouse, and maybe others.
  20. Make Christmas Ornaments – Having homemade Christmas ornaments on your tree is something that your children will cherish for years. They also make great gifts! You can make clay ornaments, swirly ornaments, or wooden ornaments.
  21. Learn About Candy Canes – The history of the candy cane is fun to learn about. You can also do some fun decorating with candy canes, like this beautiful centerpiece.  You can also do some yummy things with them: chocolate candy cane, peppermint fudge, and candy cane pops.
  22. Sponsor an Orphan – Helping our children think of others is always a great way to bring Christ into our homeschool. Our family loves the heart of Door of Hope Palawan and would love to share with you how you can help raise money to sponsor one orphan for a year. It is easy with just finding 35 people to donate $10 year or 12 people donating $25 each.
  23. Host a Charity Event – There are so many amazing charities that your family can get busy with supporting. Inviting friends over during December to enjoy a time of fellowship, while introducing them to a way to impact others.
  24. Visit a Nursing Home – The elderly have a hard time during the holidays and anything we can do to make their celebrations joyful would be a good thing. Your family can visit to read books, sing carols or just to visit.
  25. Invite a Soldier to Christmas Dinner – Soldiers are often times unable to return home for Christmas, so they would normally have no where to go for the Christmas dinner. Some local churches organize hosting homes for soldiers to come and enjoy Christmas with others.

10 Audios Your Family Should Own

When our older children were very young, we started investing in audio books for our family. This has been one of the best investments that we have made in raising our children, as our younger ones are still listening to them today… and loving them.

We have invested in more than 10 audios, but this will be a list of our top ten that I know your family would enjoy as well.

10 Audios Your Family Should Own | www.joyinthehome.com

10 Audios Your Family Should Own

 

Sugar Creek Gang | www.joyinthehome.com

The Sugar Creek Gang is one of our favorite audio series that includes adventure, suspense and wholesome values for the whole family.

The Sugar Creek Gang audio book series features this well known group of boys who always find a mystery to solve and an adventure to be had. Your boys will love falling asleep listening to these stories, or let the whole family listen on your next long car ride, even mom and dad will like to listen!

There are six audio sets in this series. We love to add a new series every Christmas and is a perfect gift for the family or an item to share with grandparents or other family that love to give gifts for holidays and birthdays.

 

 

 

Jonathan Parks | www.joyinthehome.com

Jonathan Park is amazing! My children learned so much about creation, and why evolution doesn't make sense just from these audios. Our whole family loves them and often will listen to these on long trips. I have even missed a turn to NY, which I know the way like the back of my hand, but I was so into the audio that I wasn't realizing that I missed the exit.

Each adventure is based on real places and scientific discoveries– all designed to build your faith!

 

Sir Malcolm | www.joyinthehome.com

 

Sir Malcolm and the Missing Prince is from Lamplighter Publishing, which are one of my favorite kinds of books to read to my children. Their CDs are a new product and AMAZING!

A bold intervention by the King's most trusted knight could prove to be the cure for an unfitting heir to the throne. Far from the walls of the palace, will an unworthy prince learn what it means to be an entrusted king? Dare to join Finnian as he ushers Thomas into the legendary world of Sir Malcolm and the Missing Prince, a place of adventure and undeniable truth. 

 

 

Hedge of Thorns | www.joyinthehome.com

 

 

The Hedge of Thorns is another Lamplighter Publishing products. The message in this audio is powerful for all ages.

John is determined to find out what is on the other side. And that which is forbidden makes his quest all the more irresistible! Desperate to break through the hedge, he devises a plan that unknowingly places his little sister in perilous danger. In a moment of passion and disregard for his parents' warnings, John does the unthinkable-and learns the hard lesson that there are grave consequences to crossing the boundaries that God has set for him. This unforgettable lesson has left an indelible mark on his life and will leave the same upon those who hear this story!

 

 

Charlies Choice | www.joyinthehome.com
Charlie's Choice is from the Lamplighter Publishing collection. One of my favorite books about the importances of good choices.

Hold on to your seat because you are about to take a journey with Charlie, a boy of adventure and risk. Dissatisfied with his lot in life, Charlie dreams of a better future, where money can cure all ills. He dreams of living in luxury and ease, and is determined to make his dreams come true!

 

 

 

The Captive | www.joyinthehome.com

 

The Captive another of the wonderful collections from Lamplighter Publishing is one with suspense and adventure, with a lesson tucked inside.

Kidnapped by Algerian pirates, our recent graduate Anselmo finds himself on a merciless slave ship heading to the auction block in a foreign country. Having escaped the cruelty of his first master and the death grip of the desert, Anselmo is taken captive by a new master, where he finds mercy as well as condemnation.

 

 

 

 

 

The Pilgrims Progress | www.joyinthehome.com The Pilgrim's Progress is a timeless book full of Biblical allegories. This audio is a dramatization of the unabridged book. Your entire family will love how this book will come to life and bring them into the story. Truly, one of my favorite!

I have amazing memories of this playing on a trip and seeing my husband's tears run down his face from the moving story that symbolizes our perilous journey.  Then my children wanting their daddy to reenact some of their favorite parts, at one of our local playground.

 

 

 

 

 

The Pilgrim's Progress: Part Two Christiana | www.joyinthehome.comThe Pilgrim's Progress: Part Two Christiana is a must listen to after your family listens to the first part. My children needed to know what happen to Christian's family and we all loved it!

The journey is full of adventure and suspense with victories to celebrate.

 

 

 

 

 

Hinds' Feet on High Places | www.joyinthehome.comHinds' Feet on High Places is similar to the Pilgrim's Progress, as it is written in allegory format.

“Oh, if only I could escape from his Valley of Humiliation altogether and go to the High Places.” It is with this cry that Much-Afraid, crippled and disfigured, begins her journey, leaving her Fearing relatives behind, and pressing on the Realm of Love. As the Chief Shepherd explains, no Fears can live in this realm, because “perfect love casts out fears and everything that torments.”

 

 

 

 

Living Principles of America | www.joyinthehome.comLiving Principles of America is a one of a kind CD series consisting of 36 CDs that are dramatized to share our American history from Columbus through some of our most famous inventors like Edison and Ford.

This has been one investment that we will be making for a second time, since our first ones were cassettes and they are growing tired and worn from the hours of enjoyment that our family has received from this series.

 

 

7 Ways to Bless Your Pastor

7 Ways to Bless Your Pastor | www.joyinthehome.com

Who doesn't love their pastor? Often times, pastors are just taken for granted because they are called to service for the church. I would love to encourage you, as a church goer, to bless your pastor.

Pastors are human and get discouraged, stressed and overwhelmed. They need more than just our prayers and finances. They need us, as much as we need them.

7 Ways to Bless Your Pastor

  1. Invite them to Dinner – Serve your pastor a cooked meal at your home or take them out after church on a whim. The time around the table is so personal and the conversation can be incredibly encouraging to everyone. Laugh together! Our pastor is one of the funniest people I know and he loves to laugh. Laughter is the best medicine and most pastors won't share with their congregation when they are sick or needing some encourage.
  2. Send them a Card – If God has placed a scripture or word on your heart for your pastor, send it to him in a card. We all love getting cards with personal notes in them and our pastors are no different!  Even if you don't have some purpose in writing a card, just a ‘thinking of you' card can be the very thing your pastor may need to be joyful in his never ending duties.
  3. Raise Money for a Vacation – Pastors are some of the most frugal people I know and their vacations are often connect with visiting family or even a mission trip of some sort. Going around privately to the members of your church for a donation to send your pastor and his wife on a surprise get away just for themselves to be refreshed, I would encouraged you to do so. Even Jesus went away for his own refreshment!
  4. Do a Work Day at His House – This can be something you schedule with him or just show up. Landscaping or pressure washing the outside of the house or painting some shutters isn't invading on what is going on inside and will be a quick way to let his neighbors know that good people live in that house and will uplift the spirits of the family inside.
  5. Drop a Gift Card in His Bible – Gift cards are a great way to express your love and allow them to have a time with their family at one of their favorite restaurants, fill up their car with fuel or buy the tool of his choice.  The gifting without being seen is one of the best ways to encourage a servant of the Lord!
  6. Throw a Church Wide Appreciation Dinner – Get everyone involved in celebrating the pastors of your church by coming together with an appreciation dinner. Special music, a powerpoint presentation highlighting their lives and sacrifices to His kingdom and even a table for thoughtful gifts can be a few elements to give your pastors a time of appreciation and love as a whole congregation.
  7. Inspiration Item to Use Often – I love to give a coffee cup with an encouraging scripture or a plater with a strong message that when it is used will remind my pastors how much they mean to our family time and time again.

Moms Night Out - Host a Church Movie | www.joyinthehome.com

How to Find Peace When Your Heart Aches at the Holidays

 

How to find Peace when Your Heart Aches at the Holidays

At this time of year, it is common to remember aloud the blessings of the year. Facebook feeds swell with lists of treasured relationships, church groups invite us to name our blessings, and we prepare to share around the table on Thanksgiving Day. We do well to stop and contemplate the good things God has bestowed on us.

But what if you cannot rejoice? What if the busyness of the season swirls around a sorrowing heart?  What if you experience grief during this holiday season?  What if the thanksgivings of others serve as reminders of what you lack?  How do you find peace when your heart aches at the holidays?

Emotional pain can be isolating, especially during times of celebration. Hannah in ancient times knew the isolation that pain can bring. Even the husband who loved her could not understand her deep desire for a child. When Job suffered the loss of all he had, his wife discouraged him, and his friends accused him. Jesus Himself, when He celebrated Passover with the knowledge that He was going to the cross, was deserted by His best friends. When your friends and family are not able to handle your pain or to understand your complaints, do not be afraid to go to God alone.

 

Is Anyone Suffering?  He Should Pray.

Leave the feasting of the season.

Follow Hannah's example. If you can, physically go to a quiet place where you can be alone with the only One who can understand your thoughts.

Pour out your feelings to God.

Journal, speak, or pray in the quietness of your heart.

Do not worry about using the right words.

The Savior who died for you understands and speaks to the Father on your behalf.

Do not be timid because of your anger.

The God who controls the fiery explosions of the galaxies can handle your anger.  God remembers that He formed you from dirt.  He is not surprised by your weakness.  He can hear your pain, and remind you of Who He is, like He did for Job.

Know that the story of your pain may not be visible from this world.

Job's pain had no earthly reason. You may not find answers, but you can find peace.

Know that you are not alone.  

Christ Himself has volunteered to be your advocate.  This is a place He has been before.

 

Suggested passages for mediation:

The story of Hannah: I Samuel 1

The Story of Job: the book of Job

Psalm 6

Psalm 102

Psalm 116

 

Christy McGuire Guest Post for Teachers of Good Things