Friday, April 28, 2017

The Gospels: A Drive Thru History® Review

Drive Thru History
One of the major advantages to living in the digital age is how much knowledge we have access to.  Media definitely has its burdens and flaws, but it also has the power to embolden our faith!  Drive Thru History® – “The Gospels” is the latest project from Drive Thru History® with Dave Stotts and one of those tools that can be used to teach and build up our family and friends toward a better understanding of the Bible.  One of the first questions a person might ask when introduced to the gospel is usually about how we can trust the Bible to be true.  This entire series touches on many ways to answer that question.  This has certainly been one of those reviews that the adults benefit just as much as the kids! 
Drive Thru History The Gospels
Drive Thru History® – “The Gospels”  is a series of 18 30 minute episodes over 3 DVDs where Dave Stotts travels to all the locations mentioned in the gospels that housed Jesus' birth, life, death and ministry.  There are over 50 ancient sites he visits and utilizes history, archaeology, geography and art to bring the story to life.  As students of the Bible we all picture in our mind what events looked like, but at best come up short with a good visual because we just weren't there.  Visiting, albeit virtually, the places where these things really happened sets our understanding on a whole new level and certainly builds up our faith. 

Drive Thru History The Gospels
Also included in this set is a study guide corresponding to each episode that can be used in a variety of ways.  The study guide provides a summary, recommended scripture reading, discussion questions, beautiful graphics and bonus information under the heading 'Side Road' for each episode.  The recommended age of this series is 5th grade to adult, but families are encouraged to watch them together too.  Since the children in our family are 6 and under, we simply watched episodes together and not as a specific study.  However, when using the study guide, this quickly turns into a massive bible study tool.  For homeschooling families, this could supplement a major history, geography or Bible study.  It could also be useful for church groups or even just studying with your friends and neighbors.   Drive Thru History® provides a great springboard opportunity to discuss all aspects of the gospel with others from a unique perspective.

Drive Thru History The Gospels
As a parent and teacher of small children, I'm excited to have this in my library.  Almost like a digital encyclopedia, this set provides multiple layers of information to be dissected and used.  It's been fun to watch now, but it will also be useful to pull from as my kids get older and much of it becomes more relevant to their own understanding.  Drive Thru History® sure did a great job!

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The Gospels {Drive Thru History® Reviews}

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Wednesday, April 26, 2017

It Only Takes One: Letting Go of Longing

If you were one of those favored people that everyone wanted to date or be like, then feel free to skip this post because you might not understand where I'm coming from.  For the rest of us, I expect you'll know what I mean.  We all had a time - and maybe still live there - where we longed to be that popular and interesting person that seemed to have all the cool friends and get all the dates.  Contentment with ourselves seemed impossible and no matter who paid us attention, we just weren't satisfied.  For most people it is simply an adolescent phase, though a few drag it into adulthood and beyond.  Regardless of how real it feels, it isn't a healthy place to live.

I was (am) most certainly that girl with the super sensitive feelings who noticed when all the boys paid attention to miss beautiful and all the girls didn't mind me if there was no one more interesting around.  The longing and discontentment, while maybe I hid it well - not sure, followed me around like a dark cloud.  I've been married 10 1/2 years to quite my uncomfortable opposite that has forced me to learn and grow more than anyone in my life.  It has certainly not always been fun, easy or even felt good (because growing is hard), but friends I just want to say something.  It only takes one relationship, maybe a best friend, maybe a husband, or maybe just a committed relationship with God, to satisfy those longings our adolescent conjures up.  It doesn't take attention from ALL the boys or all the popular kids, it just takes one faithful, authentic relationship to heal old wounds and teach the heart true commitment and devotion.  It's so easy to get a perfectionistic view of what we want or demand in a relationship that distorts truth as well, but it only takes one good one to realize how unnecessary all that fixating is.

There is a lot that I dislike about this picture.  It is NOT a perfect shot of us.  
But it doesn't take perfect to fill up the soul.

Tomorrow marks 3 weeks since my third child was born and the closing of a most stressful and trying adventure.  There's much to say about that, but I'll save it for another post.  What is significant is that Mr. Butler is and was the most amazing faithful friend and partner I could have had in all of the things we had to do.  He was the perfect strength in my weakness.  We have weathered all kinds of storms together so it didn't surprise me when we stared down this one together.  However, it did overwhelm me how far the 14 year old girl I sometimes still carried around in my heart had come.  It only took my (aged and purified) relationship with Mr. Butler to stamp out the foolish comparisons and longings of my youth.  So, whether you find yourself stuck in a cycle of longing or as our children grow through these stages, let's remember how many lies adolescent sneaks in. It doesn't take the popular crowd or the cutest boy or even the perfect 15 friends to satisfy our hearts.  It just takes one relationship of truth and stability to ground us where all others can come and go for the best without constantly pulling us out of orbit.

Thursday, April 20, 2017

The Value of a Day

There are days that trick the mind into thinking nothing is unique, precious or significant.  While the ease of those days is intoxicating sometimes, don't allow yourself to be fooled.  Other days lie in the shadow of thick, weighty events that burn our eyes with what is most important.  This burning must be remembered on every day so that all days alike will be valued.

Friday, April 7, 2017