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Discernment versus Judgement

This is WEEK 14 of the Character Development Series I am doing for 2012.  So glad you stopped by.
“Examine the contents, not the bottle “-
Talmud

“You can see deeply into a tangled forest if you peer closely” –
Mike Kershnar

“God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.” –
Reinhold Niebuhr

Discernment means:
1.keen insight
2.wise perception Read the rest of this entry

Cautiousness versus Rashness

This is WEEK 5 of the Character Development Series I am doing for 2012.  So glad you stopped by.  
A quarrel had arisen between the Horse and the Stag, so the Horse came to a Hunter to ask his help to take revenge on the stag.  The Hunter agreed, but said: “If you desire to conquer the Stag, you must permit me to place this piece of iron between your jaws, so that I may guide you with these reins, and allow this saddle to be placed upon your back, so that I may keep steady upon you as we follow after the enemy.”  The Horse agreed to the conditions, and the Hunter soon saddled and bridled him.  Then with the aide of the Hunter, the Horse soon overcame the Stag.  Then he said to the Hunter: “Now, get off and remove those things from my mouth and back.”  “Not so fast, friend,” said the Hunter.  “I have now got you under bit and spur, and prefer to keep you as you are at present.”

Moral Of Aesop’s Fable:  If You Allow Men To Use You For Your Own Purposes, They Will Use You For Theirs.”
We should strive to be cautious in our lives and not make fatal mistakes with rashness.
Read the rest of this entry

Who’s The Bait For?

*ASSERTION

* BANDWAGON

*CARD STACKING

*SNOB APPEAL

*SLOGAN

*LOGO

*TRANSFER

*PRICE APPEAL

*STACKING

*REPETITION

*GLITTERING GENERALITIES  *TESTIMONIALS  *CELEBRITY STATUS  *CAUSE AND EFFECT  *EMOTIONAL APPEAL  *CONFUSION  *SEX APPEAL  *TECHNICAL JARGON  *NAME CALLING  *PLAIN FOLKS

Are these terms familiar to you? and are they familiar to your children?  When recognizing the influence media has on our children and how much their world is bombarded with its messages,  our responsibilities as parents becomes critical.
When I was in high school, I took a class on marketing strategies and we learned about how the advertising world targets varying ages, social groups, genders and personality types to lure them into buying or trying their product or believing the messages they are trying to deliver.  This opened my eyes to the world of bait and hook, and I realized that is also Satan’s specialty.  He loves to find the thing that we least suspect to be a hook, and he just waits for us to take the bait and run with it.
It is a wise thing to use filters and parental controls on the forms of media our kids have access to on their own…but it isn’t foolproof.  We can’t protect them from being exposed to some things that will be potentially dangerous or harmful to them.  It is good to empower our children with knowledge and to teach them discernment when we can.   The internet has many resources for learning about these marketing strategies so that we can teach our children.  We can watch TV with them and spend time on the computer with them showing them things that are meant to deceive them, and discussing the differences between what may be portrayed in a TV show with worldly influences and God’s standards.  There are so many opportunities to engage our children in meaningful discussions and to involve them in the process of learning to think for themselves, instead of just following the crowd and easily taking the bait.
There are also many resources for learning about the various forms of media our children are interested in that we may have limited knowledge about ourselves.  A very good resource is Be Web Aware http://www.bewebaware.ca/english/default.html, part of Media Awareness Network.  This site has many interactive tutorials, links, and resource tools to help you become an educated and involved parent.
A PRAYER FOR YOUR CHILDREN:  May God equip them with discernment and may they experience an open, involved communication with their parents that will help them to see through the deceptions of the world and empower them to look to God for guidance and wisdom as they live out the concept of Being IN the world, but not OF the world.

Image above courtesy of: Copyright (c) <a href=’http://www.123rf.com’>123RF Stock Photos</a>

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