Honor (21 Days of Prayers for Sons)

Show proper respect to everyone, love the family of believers, fear God, honor the emperor.

1 Peter 2:17

Honor. 

That word almost seems archaic in this day in age. I ask my children what honor means and they don’t know because it’s not exactly a buzzword or a high-frequency word from school. It’s for this very reason that we talk about honor at our house and use the actual word. Yes, honor means respect and a certain regard for others, but how does that look in the life of our boys? How do we cultivate attitude of honor that fuels the small choices which are foundational for a life that will eventually be labeled as honorable?

Honor — 21 Days of Prayer for Sons Challenge via The MOB Society

Speak it.

Honor is shown in many different ways and I think even from the earliest age, we can urge our boys to act honorably. First of all, using the actual language is important. Talk about honor. Discuss who should be a recipient of honor and how that could be shown. For the little guys, it can be as simple as saying, “We honor our mom and dad by picking up the toys they buy us” or “We honor our siblings by not stealing their toys.” As they get older simple sentences can evolve into full-blown discussions. Why do soldiers salute the flag?  Why do we hold the door open for ladies? Why do the firefighters have a black band across their badge?

Act it out.

I’ve done some things that can be considered less than honorable. I don’t want my son to follow in my footsteps as far as that is concerned. Maybe you’re in the same situation with a less-than-optimal track record. Please know it is NEVER TOO LATE to start making honorable decisions. Turn, friends. Look up. Ask Jesus for forgiveness and then ask him for strength to make more honorable decisions. You’re not His black sheep, no, you are his beautiful daughter who he has gifted with some incredible little boys (or big boys). I promise no matter how messy your situation, he can take all the shards and piece it together more beautifully than we could ever imagine. Don’t allow yourself to wallow in dishonor, instead take Christ’s honor, which is what God sees when He looks at you and focus on imparting that honor to your sons.

We’ve all heard that actions speak louder than words and this rings true, especially with honor. Our boys can talk all they want about honor, but if we aren’t acting it out in our lives by making honorable decisions, how can we expect them to make honor a priority? It is through the small, every day honorable behavior and choices that a life comes to be characterized as honorable.

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What about you? 

1. How do you honor your boys in your home? How do you cultivate an honorable attitude?

2. Are there any areas in your story where you acted dishonorably? Make a plan of how you will discuss them with your boys when the time is right and they are the appropriate age.

3. How has God redeemed the dishonorable parts of your story?

Throughout the day, pray the ten scripture prayers found at the end of the Honor chapter in Praying for Boys!

Kjtanner headshotKristina never thought that the title ‘single mom’ would follow her name, but now that it does she writes about navigating life in this unexpected season. A native New Yorker who despises precipitation of any kind, she works as an American Sign Language Interpreter and writes about her adventures with her four daughters and one son. Her life is rarely boring.

Just joining us? Simply subscribe to the MOB Society blog now. That way, the 21 Days of Prayer for Sons posts will come straight to your inbox all month long!

Praying Against Pride (21 Days of Prayer for Sons)

“Do not boast so proudly, or let arrogant words come out of your mouth, for the Lord is a God of knowledge, and actions are weighed by Him.” 1 SAMUEL 2:3

“Blake will be our center-fielder, Brett will be at shortstop, and I’ll be the starting first baseman and batting clean-up.” my then 13-year-old son confidently announced.

“Well” I replied. “Don’t you need to make the team first, buddy? Tryouts aren’t until next week.” My child sported a smirky grin.

“Mom. I had the second-best batting average on last year’s team. No way coach is gonna cut me,” but when the roster was announced, my son’s name wasn’t on it. The coach indeed had cut him. While it was a bit puzzling to us that our son didn’t make the team that year and other kids who weren’t as skilled did, we wondered if the coach had sensed what we were sensing–this boy had a bit of a pride problem. And not just one in his heart; his mouth often followed suit, bragging about his athletic ability while slamming the inferior skills of other players.

MOB-Wisdom

Surprisingly Thankful

We were actually thankful our son got cut that year. We saw God use it to humble him and temper his arrogant verbiage. We saw him learn to relate to others who often got left out or who just sometimes felt “less than”. We were also able to talk to him about the truth in today’s key verse: our actions are weighed by the Lord.

This event in our son’s life prompted me to begin to pray specifically about the commands in 1 Samuel 2:3. I prayed that our boys both would refrain from not only being proud in their thoughts, but also from letting the thoughts migrate down from their brains, tumble out of their mouths, and emerge as boastful speech. And I vowed not just to address such behavior when I saw it, but also to share with them about when my own prideful words have gotten me in a heap of trouble too.

My Own Experience

I too have bragged. In grade school. Or high school. Back a few years ago. Why, maybe even last week! Knowing that their mom struggles with pride showed my sons that we are all susceptible to pride’s slippery slope, and so? We must be on our guard. 

I now ask for the Lord to help my boys to understand and appreciate their own strengths—whether athletic, academic, relational, or otherwise—but to know that they were not given these gifts and talents to proudly strut about but instead to humbly serve, encourage, and to ultimately point others to God. As I pray for my boys, I pray for myself. May we all have a proper view of ourselves—not thinking of ourselves more highly than we should but also not having an incorrect, “I’m no good at anything!” attitude either. I want my young men to view themselves through the eyes of truth. I want them to enjoy what they are good at, work hard at the things that don’t come as naturally, and give God the glory in both. And yes, sometimes I even want them to get cut or not to come in first place. For by losing many lessons in life are learned that we somehow miss when we wear the gold medal around our necks.

A Heart Attitude

God sees the attitude of the heart. He weighs our motives. Our thoughts, words, and actions should aim to please Him. Let’s pray that the same may be said of our sons.

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What About You?

~What do you think about the idea of wanting our sons to fail sometimes? Do you agree it is valuable?

Throughout the day, pray the ten scripture prayers found at the end of the Pride chapter in Praying for Boys!

karen ehmanKaren Ehman is a Proverbs 31 Ministries author and speaker, as well as a writer for their Encouragement For Today online devotions that reach over one million women daily. She has written seven books including  the popular LET. IT. GO: How to Stop Running the Show & Start Walking in Faith.  Married to her college sweetheart Todd, together they raise their three sometimes quarrelsome but mostly charming children in the boondocks of central Michigan. There she enjoys antique hunting, cheering for the Detroit Tigers, and feeding the many teens who gather around her kitchen island for a taste of Mama Karen‘s cooking.

Just joining us? Simply subscribe to the MOB Society blog now. That way, the 21 Days of Prayer for Sons posts will come straight to your inbox all month long!

Praying for Wisdom (21 Days of Prayers for Sons)

We want to take a second to check in today. How are things going? Are you praying with us? Are there moments that God has used to really touch your heart through this challenge? We’d love to hear about them in the comments!

But the wisdom from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, open to reason, full of mercy and good fruits, impartial and sincere. And a harvest of righteousness is sown in peace by those who make peace.

James 3:17-18

Tell-tale sounds resonated from upstairs.  As I got nearer I could see that lights were on which could only mean one thing–the little jack-in-the-box who resides within our walls was at it again.  Getting out of bed is not new, but now there are school mornings to be reckoned with.

Just before bedtime I had explained that there would be consequences for being up for ANY REASON other than going to the bathroom.  As most young kids, my bright, independent, and strong-willed 5 year old is fully capable of “reasoning” his way into disobedience.  Most often the justification for doing something that he has been instructed against is “because Momma and Daddy wouldn’t see it.”  Humph!  Does he not know about our super powers?

A FREQUENT PRAYER

Through conversation with my little guy I informed him that he had decided he wanted the consequences by performing an action.  He assured me he DID NOT want the consequences at all!  Can you say “teachable moment in logic”?  By guiding him in thinking and predicting, all the while basing our standards on God’s Word, I am giving him a start in wisdom instruction.

My most frequent prayer is for wisdom.  Intelligence and smarts can have worldly benefits and rewards, but often fail in the long run if not directed by wisdom.  This verse from Proverbs promises what I want most for my son, my family, and myself.

“For whoever finds me {wisdom} finds life and obtains favor from the LORD.” Proverbs 8:35

WE MUST LEAD THE WAY

Is there anything better than life and favor from the LORD?  There aren’t any riches or advantages that compare.  It is the finding that takes the work and we must lead the way.  Therefore, we must be seeking wisdom to show our sons how to do the same.  There will be mistakes and missed opportunities along the way.  This is the struggle that will lead to growth.  We start this growth in small ways with small decisions and acts of obedience.  Without wisdom in the small or less significant areas of life, there can be no expectation of wisdom over the more important.

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WHAT ABOUT YOU?

  1. List behaviors in your children you consider foolish…why?
  2. Sometimes our children make foolish decisions.  Other times they make poor decisions simply because they don’t know better. Describe the difference between the two and how that might impact your correction of each.

Throughout the day, pray the ten scripture prayers found at the end of the Wisdom chapter in Praying for Boys!

View More: http://kimdeloachphoto.pass.us/allumeheadshotscut

Raised in the mountains of Southwest Virginia, this country girl loves to tackle a good subway system to find the hidden treasures any city can hold. Being a serial mover with her husband of over 23 years and 5-year-old son keep life interesting. Amy is a researcher and tutor at heart. Nothing makes her happier that finding what you need, before you know you need it, and passing that information along. You are just as likely to find her alone, with one friend, or in a crowd. You might even occasionally find her blogging at www.Amylearns.com.

Just joining us? Simply subscribe to the MOB Society blog now. That way, the 21 Days of Prayer for Sons posts will come straight to your inbox all month long!

Praying for Integrity (21 Days of Prayer for Sons)

“But as for me, I shall walk in my integrity; redeem me, and be gracious to me.” Psalm 26:11

One of the first things my dad noticed about my now husband when we started dating was his tendency to just be who he was no matter what. “You know,” my dad said, “I like that he doesn’t pretend. He just is who he is.”

I loved that about him, too. He felt safe, stable, and predictable (in all the good ways). He never tried to impress people and he never expected anything of me other than what I was. This came in very handy the day I wrecked his truck.

The Big, Red, Truck

It was a Dodge Dakota Sport, candy apple red, extended cab, with a spay-in bedliner…and it was his baby. He’d worked hard for every penny he put into it, and kept it in immaculate condition. I loved everything about that truck, including the man who drove it, so when I needed a vehicle that could haul a bunch of tents and camping gear over to the lake for our annual Youth Retreat, I didn’t hesitate to ask him if I could borrow it.

His reply? “Sure, but be careful.”

Praying for Integrity — 21 Days of Prayer for Sons Challenge

I blew him off. Actually, I got a little irritated with him for telling me to be careful because I knew I could handle that truck. A country girl at heart, I pride myself on being able to drive most anything, and it stung a little that he felt the need to caution me. So I drove off into the sunset, windows down, blonde hair blowing in the breeze, radio cranked up loud, and promptly ran it smack into a light pole outside of a CMT.

No matter how I spin this story, it still ends with me running a truck into a large, cement bottom light pole in the middle of an open parking lot. There’s really nothing I can add or take away that makes it any prettier, so there you go…I hit a light pole. Actually, I was taking a bite of my bagel and reaching for a cup of milk at the same time. My foot wasn’t even on the gas peddle, but I still managed to do about $6000 worth of damage to my sweetie’s baby truck.

I think I was in shock for a moment. My bagel flew out of my hand and hit the windshield, and the cup of milk spilled all over the interior of the truck. And a little old man who’d been patiently waiting across the street for the bus to come walked over, pecked on the window and said, “are you OK?”

With my mouth still open, I shook my head, “no,” and then let it fall hard against the steering wheel, my husband, then boyfriend’s words ringing in my ears…”be careful…be careful…be careful.”

Be Careful

My brother was there in a matter of seconds and took control of the situation, giving me time to walk inside the store and call my husband. He worked in a manufacturing plant at the time, and was only allowed phone calls if it was an emergency, so he knew when they called his name that something was wrong. I tried hard to remain calm, but when his voice came on the line and said, “what’s wrong, Brooke” I lost it.

“I wrecked your truck I’m so sorry please forgive me and don’t kill me I think we need a wrecker and I really didn’t mean to do it it was an accident I promise don’t break up with me I”M SO SORRY!”

SNIFF.

Or something like that…

I thought he would be livid. I thought he would break up with me. I thought he might not speak to me for a while, or get mad at me, or something…anything other than what he actually did. His first words to me after I spilled the ugly news defined and solidified our relationship like nothing else could’ve, and assured me that he was worth investing my life in. He said:

“I don’t care about the truck. Are you OK? Are you hurt? Where are you? Who’s with you? You shouldn’t be alone.”

In the most strenuous, stressful, challenging situation our relationship had endured to that point, he stood by me and cared more about me than he did his precious truck. And ladies, make no mistake, that truck was precious to him…but I was more so.

I often get asked how to teach boys to be men of integrity. There are lots of men of the Bible whose lives demonstrate this virtue, and we can and should read their stories to our sons, but the thing I keep coming back to over and over is that the best way to teach boys integrity is to be men and women of integrity, living it out for them day by day (<<—tweet that!). We have to be careful with the way we live, taking special caution to live well when no one else is looking.

In the moments following what is still the most talked about piece of our history together (yes, I still get teased by his brothers…rightfully, so I guess), my husband demonstrated to me that he truly was a man of integrity. He cared about me first in the good times, and cared about me most in the hard times. I hope we can teach our boys to do the same.

His first words to me after I spilled the ugly news defined and solidified our relationship like nothing else could've, and assured me that he was worth investing my life in.

WHAT ABOUT YOU?

What are you doing to live a life of integrity in front of your boys? Are there some ways you could improve? Pray and ask God to help you search your heart and let go of anything there that’s not of Him.

Throughout the day, pray the ten scripture prayers found at the end of the Integrity chapter in Praying for Boys!

Screen Shot 2014-06-30 at 11.05.14 PMBrooke McGlothlin is Co-founder of Raising Boys Ministries, where moms and dads come to discover delight in the chaos of raising boys and shape a generation of men to love the Lord. Get a free copy of her ebook, Surprised by Life: Five Ways to Respond Well When Life Doesn’t Go as Planned when you subscribe to her free newsletter!

Just joining us? Simply subscribe to the MOB Society blog now. That way, the 21 Days of Prayer for Sons posts will come straight to your inbox all month long!

Why We’re Becoming a Nonprofit (& what it means for you)

Five years.

Almost five years ago the Lord planted a seed in our hearts for what would become the MOB Society. For almost five years we’ve handled it with care, and tried very hard to follow his plan for this space, and now he’s leading us to become a nonprofit.

But why? And how does it benefit you?

There are several reasons, and on Saturdays in the month of October, Erin and I will be trying to answer your questions and help you understand why we feel this is the next step for our ministry. Today, I want to focus on reason #1—maybe the most important reason of all…

We simply can’t continue without your support.

For almost five years, we’ve worked tirelessly to encourage and equip you to raise godly men. And over the last year, the MOB Society community has multiplied such that we can no longer support this site alone, and out of our own pockets.

Erin and I are both young homeschooling moms, committed to making our own families a priority and raising our own sons well. A few months ago it became clear to us that if we wanted to continue reaching boymoms with a message of hope, we had to hire people to help us. We’d reached our maximum bandwidth, so to speak, and needed other talented boymoms to come along side us and help carry the weight of a thriving ministry.

In addition, as I mentioned last week, traffic to our site has more than quadrupled over the last two or three months. Throw in significant growth in our newsletter, blog subscribers, and a booming Facebook page and you have a recipe for great influence…influence that costs a great deal to sustain.

So in a very real, tangible way, we must have your help to continue bringing you the MOB Society.

Sure, there are other ways to raise money, but God has made it clear that we’re not to pursue them any longer. And while we realize sustaining a nonprofit will require raising money too, our hearts are to focus on ministering to you.

In short, we need our community to step up and say, “this ministry is vital, and we want it to continue.”

We need you to look deeply into your hearts and ask yourself this question: “Am I willing to give so that another mom can have the hope I’ve gotten from the MOB Society?”

If expanding the reach of this message, and encouraging more moms to raise godly men is important to you, please support our campaign today. We’re 40% there, and we need your help to make it all the way. Your support will help:

  1. Raise the needed money to become a nonprofit
  2. Pay for three much-needed part-time staff positions
  3. Cover site maintenance and expenses for the remainder of 2014

All so we can keep sharing a message of delight in the chaos of raising boys with moms in the trenches.

Here’s how the MOB Society has blessed one reader:

“The MOB Society has been an inspiration for me over the past six months. My husband left my two boys and me in February. I had always gone to church, but never had a close relationship with God. This season definitely brought me to my knees. I have been focusing on the Lord and watching my boys grow in Him through this difficult time. Your ministry has helped me to not feel alone and to guide me in raising Godly men. Thanks for being an inspiration and allowing me to feel part of your ministry.” ~Traci

Will you stand in the gap for a mom like Traci today by giving to make this new season of ministry possible?

For the next week (ending Friday, October 10th at 10PM EST) anyone who gives a gift of $20 or above will be entered to win one of two “Boymom” necklaces, generously donated by Lisa Leonard Designs for this cause (thank you SO much, Lisa). We’ll announce the winner in next Saturday’s post and reveal the next generous gift for generous supporters.

Boymom, by Lisa Leonard

*Donations are NOT tax-deductible at this time. We apologize for any inconvenience.

**If you would prefer to donate an alternate way, you can donate directly to our Paypal account at the email address themobsociety at gmail dot com OR you can email us at that same address to find out how to send a check! Please let us know if you have any questions!

Remember, only those who give $20 and above will be entered to win one of the two necklaces.

Words can’t express how grateful we are for your support and encouragement. Give today so that the ministry of the MOB Society can continue, and keep reading on Saturdays this month to catch the whole vision with us!

Have questions? Please feel free to leave them in the comments, or email us. We’re happy to answer them!