Day 5 – Family Ways to Consecrate for 21 Days

It is Friday! The first week of consecration is nearly over. You should give thanks for all you have learned. Our senses are sharpened during times of fasting and prayer. God opens our eyes to several things. Pastor Jentezen Franklin states in his book, The Fasting Edge,

“The anointing that comes through fasting and prayer give you a fresh strength to fight for your family, for your kids, or your marriage, and to win! It gives you the ability to hear God’s heart and pray forth those things that He desires to release in the nations.”

Your commitment to participate in consecration with your family is releasing blessing to the nations within them. During this first week of consecration, we have reviewed God’s plan for salvation, his work of reconciliation and His means of attracting people to His kingdom through the words of your testimony. Those reminders alone are strengthening to your soul.

I pray that these posts are supporting your success in your time of consecration and bring closeness in your family. My children and I have been enjoying our discussions about which books and which sight words to share. It has been rewarding to Tyrone and me to hear what they are learning as a result of this consecration also. Shall we continue? Indeed.

Morning Devotion

Read Matthew 16:13-19

Have you ever had an acquaintance in your life for a long time and felt like after all those years, you still don’t know who they are? Some people can be difficult to figure out. In this brief interaction between Jesus and his disciples, it appears that we have a case of inexplicable identity. Jesus asks his disciples to be character witnesses and no one has the right answer. That is until Peter opens his mouth. Peter tells Jesus who he believes him to be, Son of the Living God. As a result of his speaking out, Jesus blesses him with the keys of the kingdom of God. He becomes one of the pillars of the Christian Church. His time spent with Jesus changes his life and his legacy forever. Before Jesus, he was known as unstable. After Jesus, he began the foundation of the church. Knowing Jesus can make a beautiful change in personal distinction and reputation.

Today’s Faith Sight Word

CHARACTER. We named our older son Judah. I tell him often that whenever someone speaks his name they are praising. “Give them good things to praise about”, I tell him. He knows that his character has to align with his name.  So when I asked him the definition of character, he said, “it is a how people describe you and the way you act.” When he completed 2nd grade his teacher, Ms. Griffith, gifted him with word cloud art using words that his classmates gave her to describe him. On the back of the frame, she wrote, “Remember to look at the words on the front of this frame from time to time and think about how your classmates, friends, and I thought of you when you were in Ms. Griffith’s Second Grade Class.” It is such an empowering gift.

The gift that Judah received from his teacher last year.

Recipe for the Fast

Carrot Raisin Salad

– 4 large carrots (peeled)

– 1 can of diced pineapple                                

– raisins (2-3 tablespoons)                                                                 

Cut carrots in either a food processor or using a grater (but that takes much longer). I have a 1.5 cup food chopper from Magic Chef that works perfectly for this. Clean the food chopper right away because the carrots will stain the plastic. Transfer the carrots to a bowl. Add pineapple and raisins. Mix all the contents and enjoy! If it is too sweet for you, you may wish to add powdered ginger or turmeric to tone down the sweetness.

Confession

Repeat as many times during the day as you remember it.

In the day God created man, he made him in the likeness of God. I am the likeness of God. I am his ambassador and represent his character. I am special because I am me. May my witness be that everyone who sees me sees my Heavenly Father.

Storytime

Recommended for ages 3-10 years old

I AM: Bible Stories About THE NAMES OF GOD

I purchased this book for my family. It is great to have resources in your family library that empower your little people in spiritual development. I am currently doing a Bible study on the significance of naming. I enjoy researching information from resources for children because it helps me craft my content for the whole family. The Amazon description says that the book is for ages 4-8. It is structured similarly to a chapter book. My middle schooler, an avid reader, enjoys it too (mostly for the beautiful illustrations). Each story is arranged in sequence with the Bible chapters from Old Testament to New Testament. It would be rather easy to use this book as a study guide for your youth reading the Bible In A Year from beginning to end. I am especially fond of how the author, Diane Storz, uses transitions in the What Happened Next section to ensure your readers don’t miss the context of the biblical names that are featured in the book. She is currently working on a devotional for preschoolers. All of her books make great gifts for the developing Christian leaders in your home.

Bonus Tip: As children are developing their writing and reading skills, parents and educations provide them with sight words to study. Those sight words help learners create sentences, improve their reading and articulation. In much the same way, Faith Sight Words can be used to help your Bible learners improve their understanding of the Christian Faith. I will share 21 words over the course of this consecration but there are several more for use. (In fact, my 21words have not been the same each year). Faith Sight Words are great for initiating discussion. Help your children develop their personal testimony and share the gospel in one word each day.

Feel free to share with me your experiences during your consecration in the comments below.

“Heirs Together of the grace of life; that your prayers be not hindered.”

This Family is His Family.

Love Your Legacy,

Mrs. Q.

 

Day 4- Family Ways to Consecrate for 21 Days

Thus far during this period of consecration, I feel like I am nesting. Fasting is a form of purification for our body naturally. I have also found that when you are spiritually cleansing the body during the consecration, you will find yourself purifying your surroundings. I purged my bathroom vanity …

Day 3 – Family Ways to Consecrate for 21 Days

Congratulations, you are halfway through the first week of your consecration!

At this point, you’re realizing that it takes the right mindset during fasting to accomplish the will of God concerning you. I’ll be honest, that is not easy.  The mind seems more difficult to tame than the fork during the consecration. That is precisely why it is important that we invest, sacrifice, and devote our time for sacred submission under the power of the Holy Spirit. 

All five of these ACTION ITEMS are meant to help you keep your focus on the gains in your consecration. I pray that these tidbits are helping you push onward. We are going to make it these 21 days. You’re already 4 days in. Let’s keep going!

Morning Devotion

Read Luke 8:40-56

Jesus was known to the people of his time as a teacher. Teachers attract people that need their instruction but they also attract critique. Throughout the ministry of Jesus, he finds many that need him but he also finds those that wish to analyze and evaluate him. The critique means that the “word has gotten out”. The stories of the “woman with the issue of blood” and the daughter of Jairus in Chapter 8 of the book of Luke demonstrate the great magnetism of Jesus Christ. In the same way that these miracles that Christ performed established his most wanted status, we can share our stories of Christ’s influence in our lives.

Today’s Faith Sight Word

TESTIMONY. According to the children, to share how good God has been in your life is to share your testimony. The type of people you attract denotes the effectiveness of your testimony. Keep sharing your testimony!

Recipe for the Fast

Vegetable Lentil Stew

– cumin powder ( 1 pinch)                                – okra

– turmeric (1 tablespoon)                                  – 1/2 cup of diced onion                     

 – can of tomatoes (drained)                              – 1 cup of lentils

– minced garlic (1 tablespoon)                          – 3 cups of water

– olive oil (3 tablespoons)                                 – sliced carrots (1/2 cup)

– diced celery (1/2 cup)                                    – cubed potato (1/2 cup)

In a 3 quart pot, bring water to a boil. Add lentils. Boil 20 mins. In a skillet, add all vegetables with seasoning herbs. Saute’ until onions are lucid. Add vegetable mixture to lentils in water. Pepper to taste. Serve when lentils are soft but not mushy. 

Confession

Repeat as many times during the day as you remember it.

I will testify. I will tell of the goodness of my Lord because I was made to bring glory to Him. I grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ To Him be the glory, both now and to the day of eternity.

Storytime

Recommended for ages 3-6 years old

Peanuts: Be Yourself

This book tells the story of each of the Peanuts characters. It is a character empowerment book that celebrates the individual personalities and interests of the Peanuts gang. While it may not be considered a “Christian Children’s book”, it is certainly an inspiring resource for developing positive self-esteem and encouraging your youth to tell their stories in their own unique voice. This one was a gift to my family and all of my children love it.

Feel free to share with me your experiences during your consecration in the comments below.

“Heirs Together of the grace of life; that your prayers be not hindered.”

This Family is His Family.

Love Your Legacy,

Mrs. Q.

 

Day 2 – Family Ways to Consecrate for 21 Days

I pray that you are enjoying these posts on FAMILY WAYS TO CONSECRATE FOR 21 DAYS.

All five of these ACTION ITEMS are meant to help you keep your focus on the gains in your consecration.

I am so happy that you decided to join me and my family.

Morning Devotion

Read Joshua 6

Yesterday, we learned that the name Nicodemus means “the people’s victory”. So naturally, the first story in the word of God that comes to my mind about the people’s victory is that of Joshua and the walls of Jericho. (That is my beautiful boy, Joshua, in the header holding the vegetables from our garden.) This story is so inspiring. What happened at Jericho literally teaches us that your praise is your weapon. There is a time to shout and there is a time to be silent but in your silence, work up your praise.Get your praise higher than the wall and it will come tumbling down.

Today’s Faith Sight Word

VICTORY. According to the children, victory is the feeling of a win. You cannot know what you cannot feel. That is key because many people are winning games and achievements but don’t live a life of victory. When you know you have the victory, you rejoice. To rejoice is a choice and that is why the Lord commands us to rejoice so often in his word.

Recipe for the Fast

Lettuce wraps with Black beans and Salsa

4 – large lettuce leaves

1 – can of black beans (drained)

– minced garlic

– prepared Salsa (use your favorite brand)

Mix your black beans, garlic, and salsa in a food processor. Scoop a healthy portion of mixture into the center of the lettuce and roll it up like a burrito. (You can warm the mixture in a saucepan before you distribute to the lettuce if you desire a hot meal.)

Serve the lettuce wraps with corn on the cob and fresh guacamole for a healthy lunch.

Confession

Repeat as many times during the day as you remember it.

I am a champion. For the Lord, my God goes with me to fight for me. Jesus, the son of the Living God, has already defeated the grave and my enemies. Though I stumble, I shall not fall. His rod and staff comfort me though I walk through the valley of death, I will fear no evil. I have the victory and I shall shout the victory forever no matter what.

Storytime

Recommended for ages 5-12 years old

Victory on the Walls: A story of Nehemiah

I am always on the hunt for Christian chapter books for my children. My oldest is a sixth grader who loves to read. This book allows the child reader to imagine themselves in the period of the Bible when Nehemiah is commanded to build for the Lord.

Bonus Tip – Our church was canceled yesterday due to snow and the secondary roads are not clear. My awesome pastor, Harold McPherson, ministered the word on Facebook Live from…wait…an empty church. He preached a message with no one in the room. Let me say that again, he PREACHED a message with no one in the room. Have you ever wanted to do that?

Here is your tip, take the confession and minister it to yourself in a room all alone. Preach to yourself like you are preaching to a congregation. You know why? There are people connected to you. When you win, they win. When you win, your family wins. When you win, it is a win for your community. So PREACH TO YOURSELF. Watch your spirit leap from your voice.

Feel free to share with me your experiences during your consecration in the comments below.

“Heirs Together of the grace of life; that your prayers be not hindered.”

This Family is His Family.

Love Your Legacy,

Mrs. Q.

 

Day 1 – Family Ways to Consecrate for 21 Days

As promised, you are receiving FAMILY WAYS TO CONSECRATE FOR 21 DAYS.

Our family fast started 07JAN2018. So, you are actually receiving congratulations for completing your first day. Yay!!!

The commitment to fast and pray is all consuming. Therefore, it is helpful to have some reinforcing reminders throughout your day when you are participating in a period of consecration. These five ways have helped my family and I recognize that the purpose of fasting and consecration is not meant to focus on what you are not eating. Rather, you should be more concerned about what you’re feeding your heart, mind, and spirit. All five of these ACTION ITEMS are meant to help you keep your focus on the gains in your consecration.

The devotion helps me get started with my day and I usually start my fast with reading the word and prayer. The confession is helpful to keep before me when I am tempted to eat something I shouldn’t. You may want to write it down on a notecard and put it somewhere visible to the whole family. I am only providing one recipe per day. Each of our morning, noon and evening meals are plant-based meals. We generally have corporate prayer with our church at 7 PM EST each evening during the consecration. We end the night with praying with the children at bedtime and reading them a story. I hope you enjoy the different stories we have picked for you. Many of them are in our personal book collection.

Morning Devotion

Read John 3: 1-21

The story of Nicodemus represents to all of us the grace of God. It is by grace that we are born again. It is the grace of God that enables us to believe and understand the will of God concerning all of us. Nicodemus came to understand the price of sin and the power of Jesus to forgive his sin all in one meeting with Jesus. Nicodemus means “the people’s victory.” With Jesus, we win.

Today’s Faith Sight Word

SALVATION. According to the children, salvation is defined as God’s plan to bring us home to heaven through His offering Jesus as a sacrifice who died to forgive our sins. His salvation plan means that he loves us so much that he desires the best for us. We should commit our lives to God and follow the example Jesus Christ gave us. Salvation is free because Jesus paid the price on Calvary. We live saved today and our reward will be to live with God in heaven.

Recipe for the Fast

Breakfast Green Smoothie

2 – kiwi peeled and cut

2 – apples (gala or honey crisp)

1 – a large sprig of fresh mint

–  frozen cubed avocado 

–   diced fresh pineapple

–  large handful of kale greens or spinach

–  quarter size of ginger

Place all contents in your blender and add water to your desired consistency. Pour in a glass and enjoy!

Confession

Repeat as many times during the day as you remember it.

I am forgiven. Jesus died that I might live freely. I am free of disease, ill wills, perversion or self-destruction. God gave me his best and he withholds no good thing from me. He has given his children authority to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy, and nothing shall hurt me. I am born again. Child of the Living God. I am for Him and he is for me.

Storytime

The Adventures of Connor the Courageous Cutter: Saving Sarah
This is an eye-opening tale of the Master’s loving way of guiding His children to Him whether we realize it or not. Authors, Scott McBride and Rod Thompson, share the tale of a personified sea vessel’s journey; capturing the message of God’s loving plan of salvation and clearly speaks to the hearts of young and old readers. A book for the growing believer and those who love them.

Bonus Tip – My family and I use the First5 app for our morning devotions. The devotions come straight to your phone as a wake up alarm. My sons and daughter love the devotions. Though my children are young, I very rarely have to explain the wording of the devotions. My 4 year old tends to ask questions. I can generally determine, while I am reading the devotion aloud, which parts of it that I need to explain further. When I come across something that I need to provide more explanation, I generally skip it. I read the devotion to myself before the children awake for school. This helps me review and prepare before I share the devotion with them.

You may choose to use a digital app, journal, online resource or just the reading of the Bible for your devotion. Whatever the case, I can attest to you that making the commitment to start your day off with your children with an inspiring word gives you encouragement to get through your day in the most rewarding of ways.

Feel free to share with me your experiences during your consecration in the comments below.

“Heirs Together of the grace of life; that your prayers be not hindered.”

This Family is His Family.

Love Your Legacy,

Mrs. Q.

Family Ways to Consecrate for 21 days – 5 Ideas for Young and Old

Each January, our church, Covenant Community Church in Suffolk, VA sets aside a period of 21 days to fast and seek the Lord regarding plans and spiritual development for the new year. We refer to this period as “consecration” which is to mean that it is a time that we invest, sacrifice and devote our time for sacred submission under the power of the Holy Spirit. In order to see our spirit strengthened, we starve our flesh of the so-called pleasantries of decadent sweets, meats, starches, and dairy. We only consume a plant-based diet similar to that described in the story of the prophet Daniel in the scriptures from the book of Daniel, chapters 1 and 10. Your fast may also include abstaining from distracting entertainment. This annual observance has been a part of our family for a very long time. We have been refining the practice over the years.Productive HeirsContinue reading

An epiphany on the way home

Christmas celebrations are done although decorations are not yet stowed away (yeah that’s me). The New Year’s dinner of black-eyed peas and collard greens is well digested by now. Students return to school indicating the end of winter break (oh but there is snow on the ground in VA) and we settle into the reality that the holiday observance is over. But wait there’s more!

The season of ADVENT is commonly associated with the Christian church during the month of December. Its focus is the celebration of the birth of Jesus Christ, known as the First Advent.  Advent prayer season, beginning late November through December 24th is marked by humble devotion and commitment, prayers of submission, prayers of deliverance, prayers for the lost and it is characterized by a theme of promise.  During Advent, believers are called to spiritual reflection, moments of anticipation and an attitude of expectation.  Many churches partake in the fasting, prayer, and reflection that is commonly identified with the ADVENT season.

There is another observance of the Christian calendar that is not so widely publicized but follows ADVENT. It is referred to as EPIPHANY. In the story of the birth of Jesus, the arrival of the three wise men is believed to have happened days after his birth. The journey of the wise men to Bethlehem, though undetailed in history, notably took some time. That period is represented in the Christian calendar as twelve days following Jesus’ birth. WAIT…. that is TODAY, January 6!

The familiar version of the story of the wise men is that they inquired of King Herod to find Jesus. When he heard of their quest, he asked them to return to him and report when Jesus was found. But when the wise men accomplished their task, they did not return the report to King Herod. What happens to the wise men afterward is unknown but we are told they returned home. They set out to find someone that they had only heard of.  They find him, gave him their gifts and then returned home enlightened to a world of new possibilities because they KNOW THE KING. It was an illuminating discovery. I would imagine that if we had a book from either of the wise men today, we might rightfully title it, AN EPIPHANY ON THE WAY HOME. Their journey was not to merely have heard of but to KNOW JESUS and they came to him with the intention of serving him with treasure.

Photo credit: Free Bible Images and www.LumoProject.com

Can you imagine the change in their lives? I can. I suspect we all can. Think of yourself as the wise men or maybe even the little drummer boy.

I have no gift to bring

Pa rum pum pum-pum

That’s fit to give our King

Pa rum pum pum-pum

Rum pum pum-pum

Rum pum pum-pum

Shall I play for you

Pa rum pum pum-pum

On my drum

We are all gifted with treasures. Some of us, like the little drummer boy, know that we have them, have used them but didn’t know its real purpose until our moment of EPIPHANY.  Some of us, like the wise men, have the gift and are reserving it in search of PURPOSE.

Our journey on this earth is PURPOSE. We are endowed with treasures to make the world aware of the greatness of our KING. NEWS FLASH!!! Stop searching for PURPOSE. Realize now that the Epiphany has taken place and you are WISE MEN (gender inclusive). Walk in purpose on the way home (heaven).

I challenge you today to ACT on the promise in this season of EPIPHANY.

THESE ARE YOUR ACTION ITEMS FOR YOUR EPIPHANY OBSERVANCE.

Write down your gifts. (If you don’t know, ask your friends and family to share what you do best.)

Write a confession that commits those gifts to God. Reciting Matthew 5:16 is a good start.

Ask God to give you goals for the new year that share your gifts with the world.

Start the year with fasting and prayer.

Set your intentions for 2018 for your personal development, wellness, spiritual development, and journey attainments (things you desire to accomplish in 3-5 years).  

Then quiet yourself. Seek the will of our Father regarding these vision points.

I will be participating with my church in our annual 21-day Daniel fast beginning tonight at midnight. (Find out more via Pastor Jentezen Franklin’s resources). Every year this is a blessing to me and my family. I will be sharing ways you can involve your family in the discipline of consecration here on the blog from 7JAN – 28JAN. No matter how young or old they are, every family member is able to participate during the time of fasting.

I would love if some of you would share what you discovered after you complete your exercise.
I encourage you to think on this season as the fulfillment of the promise. Accomplish the work that God has commissioned for you.  “To whom much is given, much is required”.  

HAPPY EPIPHANY!!!!!

Great Families Inherit Work

It is another day and another laundry list of to-dos.

You wake up every single day and the list just gets longer. If I can be honest, I admit that at times I get upset when I start to think about how much there is to do each day. Recently though, I had a real “come to Jesus moment.” All my murmuring and complaining about work landed inside the ears of the wrong persons…my children. My daughter actually said that she didn’t desire to do the work that I do because “that is all Mommy does and she is always mad.” Wow, that really hurt. I realized that I was not being a good example of what it means “to work unto the Lord.” As a result, I could be shaping my heirs to desire little or no labor at all. Such desires will ruin their inheritance. Working is a part of their inheritance.

If you think of inheritance as only spiritual, financial, material, or physical then you are missing a very important aspect of the process of posterity. Endowments, good health, heirlooms, and integrity will certainly pass on to the next generation. Yet, you also need to know that the work involved to receive and preserve these items is also carried forward.  The children of families that desire for these benefits to continue will receive the mantle of MORE WORK. Think about the patriarchs of the Bible and the prominent families in your culture. King David. President John F. Kennedy, Dr. Martin Luther King, Princess Diana, and Rev. Billy Graham. Look at their offspring today. What are they doing? Working. Continue reading