Saturday, November 1, 2008

Baby Shower Devotion 1 - Warning Against Idolatry

Other Outlines
Baby Shower Devotion 2: Psalm 23
Baby Shower Devotion 3: Moses and Parenting

Last week my friend Mary made the mistake of asking me to "say a few words" at a double baby shower at Unity. Okay, here is what I do, people. I sing. I can sing in front of people all day and never be nervous. And although it has been a long time to serve in this area outside my own home, I teach kids stuff like Children's Choir and Bible Drill.

My experience in speaking to anyone over the age of twelve is limited and slightly out of my comfort zone. But I swallowed my uncomfortableness and started studying.

For three days.

Did I mention that I am CDO? (That's OCD, but you have to have it in alphabetical order.)

After three days, I had enough material to teach a six-week study on motherhood. Somehow I knew this wasn't what Mary had in mind, so I had to cut some stuff. I tried to focus on what would have been the most beneficial to ME, SPIRITUALLY, as a new mom. Then I typed out a nifty outline and made copies for everyone.

Overall, it was fine. (Under 20 minutes! They had to cancel the shower games because it was getting late!) But as Kevin said in retrospect, "They probably expected to open cute pink outfits and eat cake, not get a lesson on idolatry." He was not saying that I shouldn't have done it, just trying to give me something to consider for later.

Assuming that I'll be asked again! *giggle*

So if you need a lesson on baby idolatry, check out the outline below. I'm open for booking and don't charge very much. ;-)

New Babies: Blessing, Warning, and Encouragement

I. Babies are a Blessing!

Psalm 127:3-5
Behold, children are a heritage from the LORD, the fruit of the womb a reward. Like arrows in the hand of a warrior are the children of one’s youth. Blessed is the man who fills his quiver with them! He shall not be put to shame when he speaks with his enemies in the gate.

II. Warning Against Idolatry: “Our hearts are idol factories.”

A. Graven Images
B. “Bad” Idols (materialism, vanity, etc.)
C. “Good” Idols (gifts from God that twist into idols - especially firstborn children!)

(Can you think of times when you idolized your children?)

III. Encouragement in Difficult Times (James 1:2-3; 1 Peter 1:6-7)

(When do we depend on God the most? What causes us to grow?)

A. Labor
1. Painful labor is part of the curse that resulted from the Fall (Genesis 3:16).
2. God is making all things new, but this has not yet been completed (Romans 8:18-23).
3. God has promised that He will be with us (Deuteronomy 31:8), and He has given us means to bear the pain (mediating on scripture and music, prayer, and your HUSBAND!)

(Do you have a testimony of God’s peace and mercy during your labor?)

B. Sleeplessness
1. Feeding your baby in the wee hours of dawn can be a special bonding time.
2. This is your first baby, so get a nap during the day when they do. Housework can wait!
3. GET SOME HUMILITY AND ASK FOR HELP! It is a blessing for others to help you.

(Do you have a special FOND memory of the “psycho-tired” days? How did others minister to you after the birth of a child?)

C. Parenting Advice
1. God’s wisdom is perfect (James 3:17). Man’s wisdom is flawed by sin (Proverbs 14:12). Praise God for wise men and woman who have written encouragement, but be careful to not place them on the level of scripture.
2. Although we can’t give Gary Ezzo a call at two in the morning, we can pray to the King of the Universe (James 1:5)!
3. God has graciously surrounded us all with godly help. Seek the advice of your husband first. You can also ask an older (not necessarily OLD!), godly woman for her wisdom and insight. (Ephesians 5:23; Titus 2:3-4)

(Have you tried to legalistically follow a human plan for raising your child? Or have you been blessed by the wisdom of your husband or a Titus 2 woman?)

From Valley of Vision:

Let those that are united to me in tender ties be precious in thy sight and devoted to thy glory. Sanctify and prosper my domestic devotion, instruction, discipline, example, that my house may be a nursery for heaven…enriched with the trees of righteousness of thy planting, for thy glory.


TulipGirl said...

Wow, I can tell that was a prayed over, studied, needed sort of devotional for a baby shower. And the older I get, the more I understand what my mother meant when she said prayer was really the key to parenting.

Grace and hope,

Camille said...

Beautiful, Jenny! Where were you when I was having my babies? (I know, I know....running around in diapers helping to sanctify your mother!)

Love you,

Michelle Howard said...

I made the mistake of reading this while my kids were in the room *snarf* My students think I am insane, because I was laughing silently and my face was red from the effort of stifling my giggles.

Jenny said...

Hello, Tulip Girl! I have been following your blog for a long, long time and am honored that you stopped by. :-)

Thanks, Camille!

What's wrong, 'Chelle? Getting a picture of the faces of some of those ladies at the shower? LOL!