Spring Tour

HeadshotAre you wondering if our book will help you clarify your thoughts?

Did you read our book and find you had a few more questions?

Have you been wishing you could interact with us in person?

If so, we’ve got a solution for you.

Spring is just around the corner, we hope.

And Sandra plans to hit the road.

She’ll be in North Carolina May 17-21, moving on to Birmingham, Alabama for a few days.

Since she loves to travel and spend time with folks we’ve decided to open up her calendar for book signings and speaking invitations. She’ll be pleased to share from the content of Children in Church and, if it would be helpful, respond to your particular situation.

on from there
Sandra is definitely not a one-topic gal. She’s excited to meet with your small group, speak to a Sunday school class, offer a ladies retreat, or any such gathering according to your needs, theme, and schedule. Check out the list of other subjects she addresses.

We’ll be glad to brainstorm with you about planning your event.
Be sure to contact us soon. We’re looking to the LORD for His specific plan.

Join Us at Meet & Greet Event

logoDear Friends and Neighbors,

Sandra and I are thrilled to announce that we will be taking part in the Meet & Greet Christian Authors event to be held in Methuen, MA on April 25th at the Nevins Memorial Library. If you are going to be in the area, please plan to join us. There will be giveaways and lots of excitement. For more info and to get tickets (which are free) got to this site.

Here’s all the info:

Nevins Memorial Library (Co-sponsor)
305 Broadway
MethuenMA 01844

Saturday, April 25, 2015 from 1:00 PM to 4:00 PM (EDT)

Contact: Clarice James 603-578-1860/cjames@claricejames.com

 

Create a Model out of Nothing?

CIC2“We understand the pattern of having families together in corporate worship is not something every congregation or set of parents has witnessed for themselves. It can be rather disconcerting to try to create a model out of nothing (except, of course, if you’re God). It is easy to say that children should be included in worship, but it is another thing altogether to consider the pros and cons and figure out how it is supposed to happen.” p. 20

We offer a wide variety of suggestions and strategies throughout our book.
Available in paperback and on kindle.

Absolutely NO Children Allowed; We’re Worshipping Here

Perhaps you’ve read about this incident on FaceBook. It first appeared on January 21, 2015 at a blog called “Pajama Pages.”

Last Sunday morning, Connor Shaw, the former USC Gamecocks quarterback and current Cleveland Browns backup quarterback, tried to attend a NewSpring service with his family, but found that NewSpring’s “children bouncers” (their term) prohibited his children from entering the auditorium with him.

He wasn’t impressed, and said so on Twitter:300x300xDot_not_touch-300x300.png.pagespeed.ic.lwg19gt7nx

Me & my wife were told we can’t go to congregation with our daughter. Too young?!? Don’t think He would approve ‪@newspringMatthew18:1-3

(Read the entire piece here).

“New Spring” refers to New Spring Church, a multi-campus group in South Carolina, led by controversial pastor Perry Noble. This is not a post intended to bash Perry Noble or New Spring Church, although I certainly could spend some time on our differences. No, it is my intent to bash a heinous and unbiblical policy being followed (and forcefully, according to Pajama Pages.

It is contrary to God’s Word to forcibly separate worshiping families. Throughout God’s Word we see pictures of the generations worshiping together. Where were the children during the feeding of the 5,000? There were elders and children and those “nursing at the breast” at the sacred assembly we read about in Joel 2:15-16. No need for a full Biblical exposition. You can find that in Children in Church: Nurturing Hearts of Worship.

This separation of families is what was done in the Soviet Union and its satellites. This is a practice long-associated with cults. It should not be practiced in the church. A separate “cry room” may be necessary. A changing room for diapers and other issues is fine. Even a voluntaryopportunity for families to spend some time apart.  It should be the goal of every congregation, however,  to foster an atmosphere in which families can worship together. It won’t always be easy. It won’t always be fun. In the end, however, it will be rewarding as we train up our children in the nurture and admonition of the LORD.

Back Online

JanIt’s Saturday, 10 January, and we are back in the internet world. In case you didn’t know, we took a break offline to gather our thoughts before the LORD. That was supposed to end on New Year’s Day, but circumstances extended that time. And in way, we feel we’re only now getting down to the nitty-gritty of exactly where He wants us to go and how to get there.

Our return to cyberspace is a cautious one. We’re learning that on our knees is the best place to be no matter what’s going on around us. Wouldn’t you think we would have learned that by now?

No?

Well, we would … actually, we did and it was nearly disastrous.

Anyway, we’re working on plans to take the CIC (Children in Church) message on the road. You CIC fans will be the first to know our schedule so you can make plans to catch up with us in person.

News to be posted here and over at Children in Church facebook. Keep prayin’.

PAUSE and PURSUE

Us 4Greetings to you in this special Advent and Nativity season.

We trust God is blessing you and your family as you remember the first coming of the Savior of the world, especially if you’re using our devotional, Celebrate the Newborn King: 25 Advent and Nativity Readings.

One way we’ve decided to celebrate this year is to PAUSE from the internet and PURSUE God separately and as a couple.

We feel strongly that we need to submit ourselves anew to His will for us and our ministry for the coming year.

There will likely be times when we need to enter cyberspace. For example, we hope to maintain our blogging schedules, but for the most part we intend to be offline.

We will miss you and hope you miss us. Whenever we come to mind, please pray God’s power and love, wisdom and mercy, grace and peace over us as we seek His face. We expect to return on 1 January 2015 refreshed and ready to move forward.

May our Loving Father bless you and keep you close between now and then.

with confidence in His sovereignty,
Curt & Sandra

Hung up in the Dark?

Help BagWe’re still reading through the book of Numbers.

I’m still soaking up Truth and joy.

We were in chapter 10 today, but a cross reference took me back to Exodus 40:17.

“So the tabernacle was set up on the first day of the first month in the second year.”

This is a simple statement that signals how long it took, after escaping Pharoah, for the Israelites to build the tabernacle of the Testimony. They spent one full year gathering materials and following the specific directions God gave them. The primary assignment for the first year of freedom was to construct a central place to worship the great I AM.

Things got interesting less than two months later.

“On the twentieth day of the second month of the second year the cloud lifted from above the tabernacle of the Testimony. Then the Israelites set out from the Desert of Sinai and traveled from place to place until the cloud came to rest in the Desert of Paran. They set out, this first time, at the LORD’s command through Moses.” Numbers 10:11-13

This was not a helter-skelter, grab a bag and go departure.

Verses 14-36 provide extensive information about the details of the journey: how the divisions proceeded, who their leaders were, what the tasks of the Levites were, how Moses addressed the LORD on rising to move and stopping to rest.

One specific point stands out to me.

“The tabernacle was to be set up before they arrived.” Numbers 10:21

The passage could be seen as simple information about a change in location. Since God chose to have the episode recorded and protected through the years, it speaks to me about a much larger dynamic.

1) When I find myself caught in a set of circumstances God has arranged I want to be alert that He’s probably got more in mind than spinning my wheels. I want to make the most of every situation the Father orchestrates to nurture my growth and development. My recent surgery and recovery is an excellent case in point.

Please cause me to harken to Your voice, especially when I feel stuck, Dear Abba.

2) When it’s time to move onward God will provide a signal that will be clear. It may not be as obvious to the eye as a visible cloud that drifts toward the horizon or a pillar of fire to light a path at night. I want to keep my heart and mind tuned to recognize the message when it’s given. It could be as obvious as a return to full mobility.

Please keep me vigilant and responsive to Your call, Gracious LORD.

3) When God gives the specific direction and process for stepping out, it may not be about how to line up. The example given here is that the place of worship was the most significant item to transport. And it was to be erected before the camp as a whole settled into place. I want to maintain the precedents God set for the Israelites; trust, obedience, worship.

Please secure my thoughts and attitudes to Your priorities, Glorious Father.

How about you?
Do you ever feel like you’re stuck in a brown paper bag?
Do you try to fight your own way out or do you turn to God?

Join with us on #GivingTuesday

This is where we minister.globe PNGThis is what we’ve been doing for the past 15 or so years: 

• spoke at and organized conferences in Africa, Asia, Europe, USA
• wrote posts and articles for various media
• published Children in Church: Nurturing Hearts of Worship
• welcomed guests into our home for refreshment and restoration
• offered support to parents and children via E-mail and Skype
• provided educational materials and records.

Here’s what we hope to accomplish in the next year:

• continue the above as invitations and finances permit
• complete manuscripts underway by each of us
• publish teaching units for Children in Church
• broaden our online presence through videos, webinars, etc.

You can join in by making a donation today.

Just go to Lifework Forum and use our PayPal page to become part of the team. paypal-donate copy