MUSIC IS LIFE
The Morningstar Academy
Wednesday, 11 December 2013 17:24
I want to talk you about the impact music makes in your life. Some of you might not realise the level of impact music
has on your lives. I AM A EXAMPLE of how far music can take you. Before I became so close to GOD I never realised
the mistakes I was making through my choice of music. I honestly didn’t see anything wrong with my music, I just thought it
was okay and there was nothing wrong with it after all, there were no insults in my songs. I was okay I was cool.
Until then I realised the devil blinded me and I was in the dark without knowing I was there. Luckily finally I was bought
to the LIGHT; I could see clearly, what was wrong with the perception of my life of music. You are also probably sitting in the
dark convincing yourself there is nothing wrong with your choice of music but there is.
I will give you one example of one song I used to listen to although am not going to mention artist’s names or titles of
songs but am pretty sure the lyrics will speak for themselves.
These are popular ones you probably know their names and heard or hearing them.
Let me just start by talking about a song I used to listen to when I was really young maybe I was eight or younger, not
really sure the exact age. At that I didn’t even know what it meant but the song was playing all around me so I picked it
and began singing it. It goes like
‘One night stand I don’t think she’s coming back no more’
I never understood it at all just sang it but even when I grow olderand I found out what it meant. I couldn’t stop,
I was already used to listening to it so I downloaded and had it on my phone.
Music has a large impact in such way that if you listen to certain things
when you are younger even when you are older. You won’t see the harm because you listened to it when you were younger.
When I look at that song with GOD’s presence I realise that, that song spreads a message of casual sex; saying it’s okay to go to a club
and meet a random stranger and have sex with them without knowing anything about them.
Which is so wrong in so many ways and plenty of these types of songs are like that for instance?
‘I will be the best you ever had.’
YouYou only see the problem when viewed from this angle, the Godly way. Although there some Christians who listen to this music and
no one would suspect them and think there are doing it in the dark but GOD sees everything so you better just change your act NOW.
In the bible music was used as hymn and a form of praises to GOD and appreciation for all his done as written in
Sing praise to LORD; tell of the wonderful things his done.
You probably give yourself lame excuses why you cannot change, I used to give myself excuses too, mine was my music has no insults so it’s okay,
as long as its talking about Love and other stuff ,then its fine. I never realised most of my music didn’t even talk about love drama.
Or the love we have with my Mighty Father and sweet fragrance that comes from having his presence or the love I will have with my future
companion who I will marry. It mostly talks about crazy or dysfunctional relationships, toxic love and you are busy there singing:
‘ Just gonna stand there and hear me cry that’s alright because I love the way you lie’ or
‘In the middle of Hollywood boulevard Screaming at each other’
‘you told you were gonna leave her for me long ago.’
Some of the songs are centred on sex. You may think it’s romantic because they put it in a bright rainbow VIDEO and
there a girl or guy who seems sweet and innocent, does not make it RIGHT.
Music shapes your character without even realising, right now its forming and moulding you to what it wants you to be.
Sometimes you use words like I RELATE or ITS JUST GETS WHAT I FEEL or READ MY MIND or these are signs you have became more
like the characters in the songs. On my part I listened to a lot of Break songs I didn’t realise it was shaping me into a person that thought all
Music shapes your character without even realising, right now its forming and moulding you to what it wants you to be.
Sometimes you use words like I RELATE or ITS JUST GETS WHAT I FEEL or READ MY MIND or these are signs you have became more
like the characters in the songs. On my part I listened to a lot of Break songs I didn’t realise it was shaping me into a person that thought
all relationships are doomed and bound to fail no matter what. I used to download an entire album that just talked about break ups.
Music can shape your character or some in future but for some of you it has already succeeded in changing you.
For example if you listen to songs that always say
‘Find me in the club.’ You will find yourself in a club.
‘You want me naked.’ You find yourself naked with someone.
Sometimes you dance to songs in your house, school and everything but never taken time to listen to the lyrics that if someone had to ask
you what the song means it will take you a while sometimes you even have to listen to the song backwards to tell what it means.
Let’s be REAL here some of these songs are just plain mean less. You know this even if you probably not ready to admit that.
These same musicians; when asked what their song means, they just say it’s a song; sometimes they give a pointless meaning.
You tell yourself that everybody is listening to it and that it is in at the moment & its number one on the billboard chart but sometimes
it’s good to be UNIQUE and do your own thing, some people may never get you but they don’t know you so it don’t matter what they think.
Speak to one another with words of psalms, hymns and sacred songs; sing hymns and psalms to the Lord with praise in your hearts.
People listen to music according to moods, but for all kinds of moods I recommend Gospel music because imagine you are angry with someone
and you listen to an angry, aggressive song about revenge, you will feel the age to revenge. Imagine if half of the gospel music was played in clubs
none of the immoral activities, which take place wouldn’t happen and not because people say gospel music is boring but because the of power of
GOD’s words , would flow through and stop all the crazy or lust ideas popping in people heads. I want you to look closely at what you listen to or
You may try to convince yourself when the video is nasty and there is certain darkness about it, so tell yourself, am only going to listen to the audio.
I used to do that with some videos just listen to audio and never the video, I was even scared of tuning in when my parents were home because
if they walked in, they would say what you are watching. My parents are very religious people but surprise, surprise that never changed
my character towards anything; I can now say its TRUTH you find JESUS on your own not because your parents are religious.
I would go as far as listening to that particular song on my headphones so that I am the only one listening. You probably have music videos
you would never tune in when your parents are around or sitting next you while you hold the TV remote. Some of you say that you only listen
for the beats not the words. All these excuses are words that the devil tries to use to influence you into believe that it’s all fine, He whispers them.
He is probably whispering to you while you read this article telling you, you are wasting your time just stop and go listen to some track, this article
is pointless and your music taste is fine. I want you to know GOD wants you keep reading and reflect on this entire message.
It is better for man to hear the rebuke of the wise than to hear the songs of fools.
I used to get frustrated when people said anything bad about my music, I would go as far as yelling and shouting to get them to stop,
that angry you feel is not from you, it’s that hold devil’s music has on you. I do now know they were RIGHT it was poisoning me and I didn’t know it.
It took a long time for me to pick my laptop and delete all the dirty music. It took the grace of GOD for me to still be strong and not go back to my bad habit.
Knowing that I had few gospel tracks, there were very few. I could easily count them and wondering what will I listen to if I don’t have this music .
I pretty sure you ask yourself the same thing,
What will I listen to? I was Christian by name but listened to Gospel music only when I was at church, which was also rare. Sometimes the Pastor would be
preaching & a song would pop in my head and disturb the church message and would start humping it. It was the devil working and making sure I heard
nothing so that I left the church the way I went.
These musician lives are messed up that you wonder how they sing about love but they have so many divorces and break ups, you question whether
that makes sense.
‘Romeo save me will could be alone, you will be the prince and I will be the princess, it is a love story’
they sing about falling love is magic and beautiful when their love life, don’t even look or resemble their songs which shows them as hypocrites.
Sometimes they write just to sell records so you also shouldn’t be so passionate about it. I am going to ask you one question what’s the number one
most played song on your playlist? you probably play it a lot because it’s a little bit like you or don’t know that song already moulding you into whatever
it talks about and in the end you even say this song gets me and this is so me. If the song is not like you, you are so close to be corrupted, so get out quick
before you are damaged.
Most Christians feel guilty afterwards because you know it’s wrong, one can never feel guilty when something is right. If you experience the love,
Christ has for you and you get closer to him not because you want to be religious. A lot of religious people play the role of hypo Christians but you
shouldn’t think about being religious and religion, think about getting connected to GOD and the love he has for you. Which brings a burning desire to
want to be close to GOD & make a new life with him? You will want to praise him every day and you do this through songs that appreciate his grace and
thank him for all his done for us. It’s up to us to use the tools GOD has given us, to praise his name. These include dancing and sing along to worship songs.
We were born to praise to GOD.
I deleted about 23 albums of artists at time I adored but after encountering the power of GOD: He helped me do that without skipping a beat. Some people
after they maybe learn of how satanic the music is, will delete the tracks but some time later go back and re-download them and some even after self knowing
what they are listening to is bad they still never stop because they don’t have strength from FATHER to help them through, so pray that you hear the whispers
of GOD that will bring you to the LIGHT and remove the stuff drawing you back from getting closer to him. The Holy Spirit will help you remove the music
from your Ipads, IPods and cell phones.
Christ’s message in all its rchness must live in your hearts,Teach and intruct each other with wisdom .Sing psalms, hymns, and scared songs;
sing God with thankgiving in your hearts.
I hope I have written this for someone to read who is going through the same or similar motions about GOD and music. Someone who’s been debating with
themselves about what they are listening to. In spite being able see some darkness about their videos; I would only say these are talented people expressing
their artistic value to the world, there is nothing wrong with that, so I thought. If it’s not of GOD, for GOD, it’s not GOD, it’s the devil at work. He uses to music
to get our clothes off, get naked and have sex with all sorts of people. Music never goes out of date; you can still listen to an album from the 90’s now as long
you like it.
So a toxic song can go on playing in your life for a long time, you will be unconsciously praising the devil for the rest of your life.
There is a wall spreading between you and GOD because of this. And you will continually be asking yourself is this right or is it not, should I stop or
should I not. Eventually you got to pick a side and stick to it. Today for me I feel FREE and I feel I could walk on water. I sure many born again Christians
say this lot YOU CHANGED AND NEVER BE THE SAME. You probably wonder what it means can only fully understand when you reconnect with GOD and
praise him not just because it’s Sunday but praise him the whole week.So that song you listen to, is it making you a better or worse person. Therfore;
So get rid of eveery filthy habit and wicked conduct.Submit to GOD and accept the word that he plants
in your hearts, which is able to save you.
I am honestly not the same girl, I changed and in no hurry to go back to the old.
I don’t like the person I used be. I love the brand new me, more focused on GOD and having his presence in my life and following my goals.
You can stop and by starting to listen to GOD: the devil is only whispering but GOD is shouting out for you, GOD is louder but you can’t hear
because you are letting the devil win. I hope this helps someone out there. Just say a simple prayer to yourself and ask for strength to do what is required.
End this crazy roll coaster with the life of music.
May you be blessed and remember this verse.
Young people enjoy your youth .Be happy while you still young.
Do what you want to do, and follow your Heart’s desire. But remember that GOD is going to judge you for whatever you do.
Remember this bible verse but do not mistranslate it, by saying it’s okay to do all the wrongs because you are young, this has been done by many
youths who abuse the true meaning of this bible verse. Live and enjoy your youth but the GODLY WAY.
10 ways to ward off worries
The Morningstar Academy
Monday, 9 December 2013 15:40
I was sitting around a table of perfect strangers at my first MOPS (Mothers of Preschoolers) meeting. It was the first meeting that year, and there were a lot of newbies like me.
We were getting underway in our inaugural discussion group, our coveted 20 minutes to talk about parenting issues. The group leader started out with a question about our speaker. And that’s when something terribly unexpected and uncharacteristic happened.
One of our fellow moms had just learned that her nephew was diagnosed with an incurable disease. He would die before his sixth birthday. She began to cry. Other moms also started to cry, and then to share. Before long, everyone’s fears and worries were heaped onto the table, and we were all holding our own damp tissue.
We talked about our insecurities as mothers, our relationship with our own moms and how that changed after we had children, and how we are received by other women, even moms, in our communities.
For a group of moms, most of whom just met one another, we sure had a lot to say. It seemed as though we’d all been carrying around some burdens: stress, guilt, anxiety, anger, resentment, pain, sadness.
Boy, it felt good to unload.
Often as parents, we feel incredible guilt when we complain. We try so very hard to be emotionally stable and positive forces for our children. It’s hard work keeping it all bottled inside.
All those worries we had before children – finances, commitments, work – multiplied after their arrival. And yet, these precious babies of ours showed us that these issues are really quite trivial.
And so naturally, we attempted to push these stressors to the side to concentrate on all the other new demands for our attention. Now we have soccer games, piano recitals, church choir and math homework to coordinate and supervise, all while handling the all-important role of moral compass and nurturer.
There’s also our own lives: church activities, jobs, housework, exercise (often the first thing to hit the back burner) and hobbies. Add multiple children and a spouse to the mix and it’s no wonder we often need to unload.
The good news is that God wants us to cast our anxiety on him, a message found in 1 Peter 5:7. It’s a theme reiterated throughout the Bible. In Psalms 55:22: “Cast your cares on the Lord and he will sustain you; he will never let the righteous fall.”
What a great comfort it is as busy parents to know that we can share our sorrows, doubts, pains and anxieties with our Heavenly Father. It tops the list of the best advice for de-stressing:
1. ‘Take it to the Lord in prayer.’ – One of my favorite hymns, “What a Friend We Have in Jesus,” sums up our need to transfer our burdens to God in the first verse: “What a friend we have in Jesus, all our sins and griefs to bear! / What a privilege to carry everything to God in prayer! / O what peace we often forfeit, O what needless pain we bear, All because we do not carry everything to God in prayer.”
We thank the Lord, ask him to watch over loved ones and seek his blessings. Why then should we not cast our anxieties upon him, in exchange for peace?
The Lord tells us in Jeremiah 33:3: “Call to me and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know.”
Why do we so often hang on to our problems when prayer will offer the solace we’re seeking. God wants us to dump our worries in his lap. What a precious gift!
2. Don’t apologize for your feelings. – Having ups and downs in life is normal. Sure, we’re not supposed to “sweat the small stuff.” Sometimes, however, we do. And that’s OK. Don’t beat yourself up for letting the little things get to you. Likewise, don’t feel guilty about having a terrific day. Each day is different.
3. Leave your luggage behind. – A great deal of stress comes from past encounters, worries, tribulations. Leave them there where they can’t haunt you. You may not be able to completely break away from your past, but you can feel better about it if you forgive or seek forgiveness and then move forward.
4. Live in the present. – As much as we fret over the past, we also fear what lies ahead. God gives us permission to live only in the moment. In Matthew 6:34: “Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.”
5. Leave work at your workplace. – Our jobs can often be tremendously stressful with long hours, demanding deadlines and tedious tasks. You’ll find more peace at home if you leave your work on the other side of the door.
Three out of four people who work in an office with 100 or more employees work on the weekends, according to the Steelcase Workplace Index, a semiannual survey of workplace trends in the United States .
This isn’t surprising, given that so many workers put in more than 40 hours a week. It’s easy to fall into this trap. Instead, find ways to make your time more effective in the office and prioritize your life’s goals. Meet your deadlines without putting additional pressure on yourself and your family, and free yourself from long hours at the office.
6. Listen to music. – Many Christian artists perform songs of soothing qualities. Instead of grabbing the morning newspaper, pop in a CD and start your morning with inspiration. Fill your soul with hope, and mend your broken spirit.
7. Go to God’s word. – Some of the best stress-relievers are Bible verses. Read them, memorize them, pen them in your best handwriting and hang them on your refrigerator or on your desk at work.
Find out what Jesus said about worrying in Luke 12:25-26. And read that God is your refuge in Deuteronomy 33:27. Find the courage to quit worrying with verses like Luke 12:25-26: “Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life? Since you cannot do this very little thing, why do you worry about the rest?”
8. Talk it out. — When all else fails, make an appointment with your church counselor, a Christian psychologist or your minister. Seek guidance from someone who can lead you to solutions.
9. Meditate on what you read. – Think about what the Bible has to say and how it’s relevant to your life as a stressed out parent. Can you relate?
Then you must also find solace here. Know that you’re walking hand-in-hand with God. “In his heart a man plans his course, but the Lord determines his steps” (Proverbs 16:9).
Remember the backbone of your faith, and envision the peace of God passing over you. Meditate on verses such as Numbers 6:24-26 and Psalm 23:1-3. Imagine, as you pray and read God’s word, that the Lord is rejuvenating your spirit and offering you peace.
Fight off those daily stressors with Bible in hand.
“Cast all your anxiety on him, because he cares for you. Discipline yourselves, keep alert. Like a roaring lion your adversary the devil prowls around, looking for someone to devour. Resist him, steadfast in your faith. And after you have suffered for a little while, the God of all grace, who has called you to his eternal glory in Christ, will himself restore, support, strengthen, and establish you” (1 Peter 5:7-9a,10).
The 5 Undeniable Steps to Stardom.
The Morningstar Academy
Wednesday, 4 December 2013 15:20
How beautiful those twinkling little lights which spread across the skies when the dark clouds gather are. It draws my mind back to seasons in my life when we all stood or sat reciting those wonderful lines repeatedly. I must admit that those rhymes are timeless lessons, evergreen classics and indeed maxims which in some profound way speak to us today. We usually chanted thus:
Twinkle, Twinkle little star, how I wonder what you are
Up above the world so high, like a diamond in the sky…….
Wonderful lines? Truly. However I’ll like you to know that stars are not little, the scientists say that the largest star would easily engulf the earth, mars, Jupiter and Saturn. The smallest dwarf stars are about the size of the earth. Therefore, though the stars are different yet they are not small.
Hidden in every being is a desire to shine; a voice to be heard, a feat to be accomplished. In you lies the capacity to dominate. In fact, stardom speaks of stars having dominion, exercising their God-given authority. There is a mass of greatness in you. Thomas Edison once said if we did all the things we are capable of doing we would literally astonish ourselves. There is a Star in you that longs to show forth its glory.
No one aiming to look at a star looks into a building or a start digging into the ground, the gaze is directed towards the skies. The problem with the present generation is that we have more of spectators and analyst and less people who are willing, like Mahatma Gandhi said to be the change we needs to see in the world. It’s not about talking the talk but rather about walking the walk. It pays to be a partaker than to be an On-looker (God forbid that I watch things happen). It’s usually said that there are those who watch things happen, there are some who wonder how things happen and finally there are also who make things happen. What category do you belong to? The word of the Bishop ever lives with me: You are not created to make a living but to make an Impact.
I’ll have you to know this for a fact that every created being was not made to create or formulate a purpose. Rather we’ve been called to find and fulfil purpose. Mark Twain once said there are two important days in life, the day we were born and the day we discover why. A purpose driven life is that which adds salt to the earth and Light where darkness dominates.
A Chinese proverb says that the journey of a thousand miles starts with the first step. Get ready to explore the steps to stardom. God is forever committed to making you into who he has in mind. One principle I learnt is this: if you do what other successful people do, nothing can stop you from eventually getting the same results they do—Brian Tracy.
HERE WE GO……
• RECOGNISE THAT YOU ARE A STAR :
The heart has its tender way of giving back what you invest into it. As a man thinketh in his heart so is he. Remember the word ‘AS’, this means the pattern, paradigm the kind of mindset a man has goes a long way in determining the kind of life a man lives. Get Infected with the fact that you are a star. Your life is a product of your heart. You become what you repeatedly think about. No man became or ever becomes what he never thought about. That’s why the scriptures were given so that we could be re-programmed into the mind of God. I usually say this to myself: I am not a burden but a Blessing. You might have been born poor, but that does not mean you should have a mind of a poor man. You are responsible for what you think and that would go a long way in determining who you become. I love the words of Jesse Jackson he said, though he was born in the slums, the slums were not borne in him. Being a star is not pop-psychology, a quick-fix mental exercise. Jesus is the Bright and morning Star and you must know that we are made in His very own image and as He is so are we in this world. We have His likeness and we reflect his glory hence the fact that you are a star is indisputable, because God only reproduces after His kind. It is a knowing: Accept it, Believe it and then Become it. Knowing yourself is the first step towards becoming who you want to be.
• RECOGNISE YOUR WEAKNESSES:
I strongly believe that the next fundamental step towards your stardom is the recognition of your weakness: the areas of life where there ought to be improvement. The journey to perfection is actually undertaken by the weak ones and not the strong. In the Beginning despite the fact that God created the heaven and the earth, in the very next verse he admits to us that the earth was without form and void and he proceeded to re-creating it. We drop our weakness and those weights as we progress along the path of destiny. Mahatma Gandhi was once asked to train a young lad to stop taking sugar, Gandhi surprisingly replied the mother to give him a couple of days to stop taking sugar himself so as to be a proper example to the young lad. This is the dilemma and contradiction we face in our nation, where leaders refuse to accept their weakness and inability to manage the affairs of governance. Where are the likes of leaders who resign their appointment no matter the luxury attached because they recognise their incompetence? The picture in Africa which we see is that of leaders perpetuating themselves in power. In my honest opinion a failed state is not one with an unstable government but one who cannot produce quality leadership.
• DEVELOP THE CHARACTER OF THE PERSON YOU INTEND TO BECOME:
I read John Maxwell’s blog recently and he made a statement which struck a chord in my heart. He said if you want to be a successful leader, learn to lead before you have a Leadership position. Character development is a rigorous process; it is not something we are born with, it is something that is acquired through experience in life. Our character is shaped by the several occurrences of our lives from childhood. Good character is a proceed of good seeds sown and vice-versa. You never become a star in a marathon by just registering and running in one, neither can you be called a boxer because you love to watch and talk about the sport. The place of training is imperative. Many great leaders of old and present evolved a noble character through sufferings. The likes of Yinka Obalade who said Poverty condemned him to success, Steve Harris who went from being a college drop-out to a corporate sell-out. Jesse Jackson, one of America’s finest politicians in a speech once said: suffering breeds character, character breeds faith and at the end faith would not disappoint. When we mention names like Fela Durotoye what comes to mind are thoughts like impact, Leadership, Influence and Relevance. Character cannot be bought off the supermarket. A Yoruba saying goes thus ‘iwalewa’ meaning character is the definition of beauty, character is precious and highly valued. Let your sufferings, pain and past produce in you a passion to save others who might be going through such situations. That’s what stars do. Kanu Nwankwo had a heart condition, later on he went ahead to establish Kanu Heart Foundation to help those have the same problems. It is sufferings that produce character and successful life stories have a way of healing the heart, giving hope to the hopeless, strength to the weak. I won’t forget Jesus, scripture says ‘for it became him, for whom are all things and by whom are all things, in bringing many sons to glory, to make the captain of their salvation perfect through SUFFERINGS’. Though he was God he wouldn’t have been effective in his calling if he hadn’t gone through the sufferings. Now he can heal the broken hearted, help those who are tempted. Your character is of inestimable value, don’t trade it for anything. Remember suffering breeds experience (maturity of character), and experience hope and hope will not disappoint.
• POSITION YOURSELF PROPERLY:
The profound words of Sir Isaac Newton still resonates in my heart at this moment, he once mentioned this: if I see farther it is because I stood on the shoulders of giants. His discoveries are still relevant in the field of science today. Proper positioning is fundamental to your stardom. There is a popular saying that experience is the best teacher. This is true to some extent. But a wise man once remarked that though experience is the best teacher it is better if it is not your own experience. This is his message: There are certain mistakes you make in life that may put you in a shape where it is impossible to pick any lessons from them. In other words, the experience of another person is your best teacher! Pure wisdom. From the foregoing we can conclude proper positioning in life guarantees that you will not make certain mistakes others who have gone ahead of you made. Biographies, autobiographies of great men intrigue me. Find out the rough paths which the great ones today took and you’ll discover a great deal of resources which would be useful for your journey. You know in the game of football and basketball your chances of goal scoring depends on how properly positioned you are. Get a Mentor, Discipler, Teacher to take you through the School Of Destiny. Every great leader today was once a follower of another leader. I discovered that every Leader must be led. The likes of Kenneth Copeland, Pastor Adeboye, Bishop Oyedepo and others all tapped from the unction that flowed from Kenneth Hagin. Karl Marx followed the teachings of George Frederick Hegel and Feubarch closely though he deviated yet the writings of these persons served as the foundation for his historical and dialectical materialism. Be extremely careful as regard whom you follow because who you follow determines to a large extent who you will become.
• FIND YOUR TEAM:
We currently live in an inter-connected reality; countries are forming pacts and alliances just to be able to create a better life for its people. The word team means Together Each Achieves More. No one ever achieved greatness without the help of others, though w celebrate Henry Ford today for his innovation as regards automobile engineering, but obviously we know that he couldn’t have been the one assembly the cars at the assembly line, he only gave the idea and others worked together to see that the goal is accomplished. With the use of the internet connectivity just became more inevitable. This lends credence to the work of Stephen Covey in the 7 habits of highly effective people, where he wrote that Interdependence is a higher value than dependence. You can never succeed alone, you need others. In the skies what makes the stars so attractive are the different clusters making it more beautiful a sight to behold. Being the Light of the World is not by Confession but by Proper Positioning. The joy of being a star really is worth the while when there are others to celebrate it with you. Our Lord Jesus has ascended up on high to prepare a place for us so we could come to reign with Him forever. Find your team, the quality and quantity of your achievements is dependent on it.
Bottom Line: You Need People.
Abstinence is Not A Bad Word
The Morningstar Academy
Monday, 2 December 2013 16:02
Our body is a temple created to honor God. The bible clearly states that we should abstain from everything that’s immoral including sexual immorality. As Christian parents we have a responsibility to educate our children on the biblical principals put forth by God. The debate on whether sexual education in school is ongoing. Should our schools have the responsibility of teaching our children about sex, birth control, etc. or should this important subject matter be better left to the parents? My concern is that when the subject of sex is broached, it appears as though all the options are covered except one very important option and that is abstinence.
In today’s culture abstinence has unfortunately become a bad word. Abstinence by many is considered old fashioned and unrealistic when in reality abstinence is exactly what we should be teaching our children. Parents have given too much control over to the schools, allowing them to be responsible for the reproduction education that children should be receiving at home.
Parents should have an open dialogue with their children about sex in a spiritual and biblical context. Pretending sexual temptation doesn’t exist won’t make it disappear. Kids need to be educated on the spiritual, emotional, physical, and mental implications of having sex when they are teenagers. Abstinence is realistic and it can be promoted within the family. Society is more interested in providing birth control than being an advocate of abstinence and getting to the root of the issue.
The most important reason we need to promote abstinence with our children is one that is often overlooked. The reason is it is what God wants from his children. Beyond all of the obvious reasons, our children should understand that their body is sacred, a temple, that is to glorify the Lord and only to be shared in marriage. It seems God is ignored when there are debates about sex education.
Our culture screams sex around every corner. Television shows like, “The Secret Life of the American Teenager,” whose focus is on teens having sex is one example of how our culture promotes promiscuity. One character, Amy has a baby, but that doesn’t deter the rest of the teenagers from having sex and with multiple partners. Even the parents have a nonchalant attitude when it comes to their teens sleeping around. What is amazing to me is this show is on ABC Family! Television irresponsibly glamorizes sex making it seem enticing without dealing with the consequences of having premarital sex. It neglects to show the real hardships of teenage pregnancy, the emotional turmoil of sexual relationships, the spiritual damage, and the physical risks.
As parents it is our job to be aware of what our teens are doing, who they are friends with, and if the type of relationships they’re engaging in are appropriate. We can’t just tell them, “Don’t have sex, because I said so.” We have to explain why sex is meant for marriage, why God tells us not to engage in premarital sex, and we need to make them aware of the consequences. Don’t be afraid to tell your children that sex outside of marriage is a sin. There are spiritual boundaries and it is okay to talk about them. When the time is right share your own experiences, whether they fell in line with God’s will or not, these are teachable moments for your kids. Don’t forget to tell them about the consequences, I know it is embarrassing especially when we fall short, but often our personal experience is the best teacher. Conversations about abstinence should originate in the home. Let’s teach our children that abstinence isn’t a bad word, but a way of life that honors God. The foundation is not built in school, but built under your roof.
A Teen’s Commitment to Purity
The Morningstar Academy
Wednesday, 27 November 2013 15:55
My son was nervous on this Sunday morning. Never liking to be the center of attention, he didn’t treasure the idea of being in front of everyone during the service, but the promise he was making this morning was one that would also be a wonderful testimony and important to be witnessed by the congregation. For his fourteenth birthday, he asked for a purity ring for one of his gifts. The pastor prepared a special ceremony for the occasion and by the end of the service, both men and women were found wiping tears away! It reminded me of a wedding service, except the ring on his finger was a commitment between him and the Lord
School stories from my son helped me recognize how hard it is to be a teen these days and what a huge step he was making to stand apart from the masses and dare to be different. What he committed to was to remain pure for Christ. He committed to keep his body pure when dating, and to abstain from drugs and alcohol. The ring will serve as a constant reminder of his commitment to Christ and his promise to remain pure.
When he accepted Jesus Christ as his personal Savior, he was justified (acquitted, declared innocent) by what Jesus did for him on the cross. Jesus consecrated (set apart) him for His purposes. The purity ring on his finger is just an outward symbol of that consecration (and I believe it’s an awesome conversation starter for sharing his beliefs!). Yes, he still sins and is not perfect, but this lifetime journey that he’s on is exciting to me because he made a commitment of purity so young in his life.
Even when satan tempts us into sinning, or we think up our own sinful ideas, we can NEVER be separated from God! I John 1:9, “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.” (NIV) However, remember this isn’t a license to keep sinning as satan sometimes tries to deceive people into thinking.
Are you up to the challenge to get out of your comfort zone and swim upstream? Forget your past. Don’t focus on your weaknesses or shortcomings. Focus on the fact that God loves you. God forgives you and God’s waiting to work THROUGH you. And I also like to think that God uses me despite myself at times! A lifetime of purity for God is a process, maybe sometimes stumbling, but never falling because God is right beside you and won’t let you fall.
Psalm 86:11 “Teach me your ways, O Lord, that I may live according to your truth! Grant me purity of heart, so that I may honor you.”
I Timothy 4:12 “Don’t let anyone think less of you because you are young. Be an example to all believers in what you say, in the way you live, in your love, your faith, and your purity.”
BREAKING FORTH INTO DESTINY.
The Morningstar Academy
Monday, 25 November 2013 16:19
Author: Oluwatobi Adesanya
Breaking forth into your destiny begins with an understanding of the scope of your journey in life. For every man there is a mandate. Your purpose is empowered by your vision………
Every Vision given is a response to a burden in the heart. The Burdens drives a person to searching, studying, inquiry and Prayer. Most times the vision is meant to solve the problems of a people, nation and society. There are key features as it relates to vision: Release, Running and Realization.
what do you see?……..
The man Jeremiah was asked ‘what do you see?’ What you see determines what you’ll get, that’s why God often times shows us Visions. He often shows the end from the beginning for He calls those things that be not as though they were. Jeremiah saw an almond tree, Jesus saw the joy that was set before him, Stephen saw the Heavens opened, Paul saw a crown laid up for him, Bill Gates saw the each home having an operating system.
Between the moments of the Release and the Realisation there is the place of Running. It is impossible to arrive at a destination without first taking a step. The delivered vision is always writable; a vision is not just an idea, thoughts or flashes, or rays of imagination, illusions or allusions. They are like paths on a race track, like a railway line. It is writable. The first place to give evidence to the vision is on paper. When the vision is released it is only a ‘it’ (at this point it is lifeless, no breath has been infused). Every vision is precise and does not lack definition. Vision means writing what you see, not saying what is seen, and it becomes a sign post that guides the path of life. Inotherwords, it is only to be written but read. Attention must be given to reading it constantly.
A vision released in the now is to meet a need of the future, hence it is for a time appointed, but there is an end, a point of the fulfilment of the released vision. There is a starting line and finishing line in every race (Chinese Proverb). At first the vision is only in a lifeless ‘it’ but when lives of men are impacted by the vision it begins to speak. Testimonies of transformed lives are the proof of the success of a vision. Patience is a necessary virtue to possess in the walk towards the fulfilment of the vision. Since the vision is a response to a need, it longs to be met and by so though even if it delays it will surely come.
No man who receives a vision should be puffed up; the revelation of the vision is to aid proper preparation for the run towards attainment. There is no room for pride, arrogance, or hastiness. Declaring to be a candidate for an electoral office does not guarantee your winning. The character of the recipient should be meekness, soberness and temperance which guide the course of action. Oftentimes the vision depicts things that you cannot do ordinarily. It is a task that cannot be achieved by sheer guts but first you must BELIEVE. It is your believing that guarantees your Becoming. Therefore, the Just (those who count themselves as having received through God’s own desire this vision) live by faith. The Faith here is a combination of Believing + Action. It propels the receiver to move.
The vision becomes totally unprofitable when the recipient does not believe it. The world will continually deteriorate when men refuse to either receive or run with their visions. God has wired us to discover not speculate about our purpose in life. Darkness will prevail if you refuse to shine as light, bitterness will destroy men when there is no salt or when it has lost its savour.
Today the vision of Martin Luther King Jr speaks, the vision of Kenneth E. Hagin speaks, the vision of Bishop Oyedepo speaks, Bill Gates, Steve Jobbs. Imagine a United States where blacks would have been sidelined forever, a world without Oyedepo would have made dead and without faith.
Perhaps only the graveyard and cemeteries would tell the tingling tales of great men who never took up the mantle of their vision, whose light were never lit and those who refuse to take responsibility for their future. A life without vision is a burden; it makes you dependent on others.
The run is not aimless or directionless, it is to obtain. To attain you have to fight a good fight of faith. It is a fight against obstacles, challenges and against personal weaknesses. You vision makes you an example, a prototype, a representation of what you carry. People should see the evidence of what you speak about.
Perhaps, there is a book you’ll love to write about, a song you’ll like to sing, a course you desire to study, don’t sit around waiting for change, stand up and make your moments count. This is a personal lesson I’ve learnt, nothing will work until you work it. All that you’ll ever need has already been deposited in you, all that is required is discovery and exploration (Eph 1:17-18)
• Constant Looking: the written vision must be constantly looked at, referred to, to see how much distance you have covered in relation to the destination,
• Endurance, Fortitude, perseverance is needed greatly. Pierre Teilhard de Chardin once said it is our duty to proceed as though the limits to our abilities do not exist. The challenges are strong enough to forestall the race. Know that whether on a visionary platform or not people are running but only those with destinations obtain. A man going nowhere will never get anywhere. You must press forward at all cost, be not slothful but followers of them who through faith and patience obtain the promises.
• In order to apprehend that for which you have been called to accomplish there must of necessity be a contention. Your breaking forth would be guaranteed through fervent prayers, wrestling, violence of Faith. Jacob wrestled with the angel. Martin Luther confronted the Papacy of Rome, Jesus confronted the Jews, the scribes, Pharisees, Mandela confronted the Apartheid regime in South Africa, and Daniel shut the mouth of lions. The three Hebrew men confronted Nebuchadnezzar. The person who apprehends is the one who contends.
• Vision imparts into you a force, a spirited confidence and courage. Shakespeare opined that the cowards will die many times before they are dead. Truly, cowards never conquer only the confident do. Truly God gave Jeremiah this with his promise in 17-19, so also Joshua etc
In the final analysis I’ll to let you know that no one would respect you on the basis of what you have written down but on what you’ve wrought. Every delivered vision must provide Proofs and Evidences that men can testify. Transformed lives are the Proof of the reality and power of a vision.
Find yours and act on it.
Scripture References: Jeremiah 1:1- end, Habakkuk 2:1-4
The Morningstar Academy
Friday, 22 November 2013 18:17
Author: Mike Ramey
The spread of more and more electronic gadgets in the marketplace allowing easier access to the cyber verse by teens has caused young people to dismiss standing on their own two feet and ‘heeding’ the taunts and catcalls of the crowd, hounding them into not only suicidal thoughts–but actions.
The best protection? A firm foundation in Jesus Christ–and His Word–as modeled in the home. It is the h-o-m-e that has been authorized to be the ultimate ‘strengthening center’ for children and teens alike; and parents are charged with the responsibility to raise up the young ones under their care to a confident adulthood. Not the church. Not para-church ministries…BUT the home.
What is a parent to do to help their children to counteract the negatives being tossed at them from a society bent upon selfishness, peer pressure, and evil? Simple: Parent Strong! Teach a child how to strengthen their minds in the love of Christ, and give them His vision of how God sees them. It’s up to y-o-u, parents!
The Bible is full of examples of young people with a vision of God’s plan for their lives. Daniel. David. The prophet Samuel. The three Hebrew men. Queen Esther. Mary, the earthly mother of Jesus Christ. Solomon. John, the beloved apostle. Each of these individuals–as teens–were used by God. Their parents taught each of these young people one thing; listen for God and ignore the negative from society.
Children model in society what they see and hear their parents modeling in their own living rooms. Your teens know their way around your workplace based upon what their hear you–parent–gossiping about at home. They know your workplace gossip by heart! Who, on the job is their own ‘man’ or ‘woman’, and who are following ‘the workplace trends’ of drugging, drinking, and cheating. Parents who actively model faith and holiness ‘raise up’ mentally strong children who are more than capable of standing on their own two feet and being leaders rather than followers.
Parents: Don’t whine! Raise your children to be a real-time warriors, instead of a part-time cyber-lemmings. There is life beyond the Iphone, video game, and social networking page. It’s never too late to ‘Parent Strong’!
Mike Ramey is a syndicated columnist and reviewer out of Indianapolis, Indiana. He can be reached at email@example.com.
Using Multiple Intelligences in Your Homeschool
The Morningstar Academy
Wednesday, 20 November 2013 16:43
Author: Crystal Pratt
In the early eighties, Dr. Howard Gardner developed a theory of multiple intelligences. He proposed that recognizing multiple intelligences in people allowed for a broader range of potential. He suggested that I.Q. tests were too limiting and that humans had a wide variety of areas in which they could be considered intelligent or gifted. He categorized eight areas of intelligence. They are linguistic, logical-mathematic, spatial, bodily-kinesthetic, musical, interpersonal, intrapersonal, and naturalist. If you have never “tested” to find you or your child’s multiple intelligence, you can try this online test: http://literacyworks.org/mi/assessment/findyourstrengths.html. What you will probably find is that while your child may have one very strong area of intelligence, he or she will show potential in several areas.
The linguistic learner is likely to enjoy poetry, journaling, creative writing, storytelling, and alphabetizing. Your linguistic child may enjoy teaching you a concept.
The logical-mathematic learner is likely to enjoy activities that include problem solving, Venn diagrams, classifying, and puzzles. This child will really enjoy scientific experiments, cooking following a recipe, sequencing, and measuring.
People who have spatial intelligence enjoy painting, drawing, making collages, murals, and posters. An activity this type of child would enjoy would be creating a film or video as an alternative to a written report.
The kinesthetic learner will enjoy science experiments, working with manipulatives, and using computers. This child will like to dance, act, perform, and build. It is important to keep a kinesthetic learner “busy.”
While it’s probably obvious that a musical learner will enjoy music, it is important to keep in mind everything that this encompasses. This type of learner will not only enjoy playing instruments and singing. They are likely to enjoy poetry, writing to music, rhythmic patterns, writing lyrics, and studying musicians.
The interpersonal learner is going to be the outgoing child. He or she will enjoy interviewing people, teaching others, cross-age tutoring, and problem solving.
The intrapersonal child is going to enjoy less social activities such as silent reading and journal writing. He or she may also enjoy reading autobiographies and the using of imagery and dreams in writing.
The naturalist will be excellent at recognizing and classifying items in nature. They will enjoy visiting zoos and aquariums and taking nature walks. A naturalist will be interested in ecology and animal rights.
By recognizing your child’s areas of strength, you can select the appropriate homeschool curriculum for your child’s needs. You will be fostering a life-long love of learning and your child will feel respected by your attentiveness to his or her interests.
Crystal Pratt is a writer and content contributor for LessonPathways.com, an innovative new product that maps online educational resources into ready to teach units.
Advantage of Homeschooling: Socialization
The Morningstar Academy
Monday, 18 November 2013 18:05
Author: Randall & Karen Webster
Homeschooling is an education option that is widely debated by comparing and contrasting it to public school. There are always two sides to every story, and there are many topics that always seem to come up in these discussions. This article will focus on one of the popular questions: socialization, by sharing our family’s experience as it relates to this discussion.
Homeschool Kids Don’t Have Socialization
This one pops up a lot. I find it hard to understand what people mean when they say this, or why it is usually the first thing they think of when the topic of homeschooling comes up. If they mean that sending your child to spend 8 hours a day with a bunch of kids their age in relatively unsupervised conditions is going to help develop their socialization skills, I am baffled even more.
Kids need much attention. When they are in a public setting, especially on their own, they feel the need for attention, but learn to seek it the way their peers do by example: whining, screaming, manipulation, hitting, etc. I’m not saying that my kids never whine, scream or hit, but we make it unfruitful for them to do so – they don’t get what they want. To be consistent with denying their whining or screaming until they ask in a normal tone of voice or accept that no is your final answer may take 5 or even 15 minutes – for the immediate battle and a weeks to win the war. This requires a flexible environment that is rarely available in a public setting. Our experience is that being consistent in denying whining and screaming is that they quickly learn not to do it. Reinforcing this over time it then becomes a way of life.
In the public school setting kids are relatively unsupervised during activities such as lunch, recess, changing classes, gym class, bus trips, assemblies, etc. Anything goes to get what they want. They quickly learn that manipulation of various forms works to get the attention they seek. However, if they aren’t one of the “group” they may suffer verbal and sometimes physical abuse that causes them to withdraw and not want to seek communication or relationship with anyone. It only brings pain. Kids can be so cruel to one another.
If you wanted your child to learn how to bowl would you send them to a group of kids their age, or would you seek a mentor who knew how to bowl? The skill of socialization is the same as any skill. They stand to learn a skill quicker and more complete when mentored by a few that are more mature in that skill. Kids learn more how to “survive” than how to properly socialize in a public school setting. They are more likely to get more loving, supportive attention at home than in a public setting. If you communicate with your kids in a truthful mature manner they will learn to get and receive attention the same way. There are plenty of opportunities to socialize with other kids at home, in church, with homeschool groups, or in your neighbohood.
My wife and I both attended public schools growing up, and we have been enjoying the advantages of homeschooling our children for over 10 years. We understand that homeschooling is a choice, and that it is may not be for everyone. Hopefully this helped you see both sides more clearly. We hope to address some more of the debated questions in future articles.
Randall & Karen Webster have been homeschooling their 5 children for over 10 years. They offer advice and encouragement through a Free 5-part Mini-Course at Frustration Free Homeschool.
Teachable Moments Through A Family Movie Night
The Morningstar Academy
Friday, 15 November 2013 15:37
Author: Camille Rodriquez
I’ve found that one of the most fun ways to plan for “accidental” teaching moments with my kids is by having a family movie night. You might think that a family movie night would just end up with no one doing any talking, but that’s not the case at all. Our family has made a tradition out of watching movies together, and we’ve even come up with a game that has been lots of fun for all of our children, is great to play anywhere, and leads to some great parenting moments where we can easily and without lecturing, introduce our children to life issues and offer instruction for them on a variety of topics.
There are several versions of the game as we play it, but the original version is the easiest to begin with. We call it the “Movie Line” game and the idea is very simple. Everyone watches the movie as a family and enjoys the time together, but at the end of the movie, we begin to talk about the memorable lines from the film. They may be funny, sad, thought provoking, or just something that we remember, but when all of us are “replaying” the movie in this way, we can very naturally begin to talk about “why the writer did this or that thing,” “why the characters didn’t know better,” “what would my children have done differently,” etc. From these very natural conversations, we can turn just about any movie into a teachable moment as parents.
The game is very adaptable to other situations though. We can play the movie game anytime we want to just by having a member of the family call out a movie. We usually start youngest to oldest, and the person who leads the round will name a movie and then give a line from the movie. Each member of the family has to come up with another movie line from the same movie. We make the rounds until each member has been stumped except one, the winner, and then the winner gets to pick the next movie. This is a great version to play in the car, at the dinner table, or in any other place where you find that you are all together and want to have some fun. No props are needed, no game boards, just a playful spirit and a good memory!
The benefit of playing the movie game this way is that you gain insight into your children and the types of things that they remember, and the ways in which you might help them to learn other things better as well. For instance, if you child tends to recall the most ironic moments of a movie, then you know that you can use irony to teach school facts or life lessons. On the other hand, if your child tends to pick up on the lines that are the most humorous, use humor when you can to teach deeper truths. Natural learning styles will begin to come through which will help you parent more effectively, but you will also have fun while playing the game and build strong family bonds of laughter and silliness.
Have fun with it – make up your own rules, adapt to children of different ages, but consider a family movie night as a way to engage your children in meaningful play that stimulates conversation and gives you insight into their natural learning styles.
Mrs. Camille Rodriquez is a wife and mother, with experience as a pastor’s wife for more than a decade and as a homeschool mom for almost 20 years. Visit her website at National Homeschool Academy.