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In this Issue

new covenant fathers

The Biggest Losers In a Marriage Are the Children



In Other News

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NEW COVENANT FATHERS

Getting down to business.
The primary duty of a father (in addition to love, protect, and provide for his family) is to acknowledge and establish the Lordship of Christ in the home ahead of any considerations he may have with regard to serving the Lord. To ignore this is to run the risk of bringing his hoary head to the grave in shame and sorrow.

The Clerical Model is detrimental. This is true not only of the one who embraces it but for his family also. To have a church of one’s own casts a spell over many a fine young Christians that wish to serve the Lord. If they are serious about pursuing their chosen path they will be encouraged by their overseers to go to Bible College and get a theological (theoretical) degree.

Many hopefuls toil away in their religious ghetto trying to make an impression on their spiritual leader and to satisfy his whims in every possible way. Their motive may be pure but their families are often neglected because they spend so much time outside the home serving the system. This is not what God wants, expects, or needs. The work of the ministry is no excuse for neglecting wives and children, or worse still God forbid. Many turned their back on a good career to become immersed in church work only to create a gapping hole ‘of neglect’ in the wall of their home. Foolishly they responded with misguided zeal to the urges of an authority figure that had more problems than most. Add bleating people to the list, while your family lacks attention and what you get is a recipe for disaster right from the outset.

The harm misdirected zeal has caused in many preachers homes is incalculable. The failure of fathers to put their family before the expectations of their religious leaders, or their own pipe dream can and has caused a great deal of sorrow and heartache. In some instances it cost them their wives, and their children. It’s more widespread than Church leaders will admit.
Deut 28:41 you shall father sons and daughters and shall not enjoy them, for they shall go into captivity.

I am not saying you shouldn’t be involved in the Kings business, but your priorities must be scripturally sound or you will rue the day you chased a rainbow called “Pastor”. I urge you to take a look inside the homes (if you can) of those you are entrusting your spiritual welfare too. When you see the material benefits that success in the ministry brings don’t be fooled? Take a look at their families. Then stop what you’re doing and look at yourself and your family, (I did) and what do you see? Are you comforted by it? Do you believe you doing it by the book? Is all the time you spend attending services strengthening your family life? Is it possible it might be having a detrimental effect? Would your family like to see more of you around the house? What do you think God wants you to do about it?

It’s of the highest priority that you remain sober and keep your balance in these matters. It’s not simply either or. God does not want your service at the expense of your family. Religious institutions and their programs dressed up with supernatural overtones are not important but your family is.

To those who work for a living, don’t use your business as an excuse for neglecting your family.
By the time you’ve made enough money to do something together they could be well and truly gone in more ways than one. What will you do then? Perhaps it’s not too late to do something with them now before they feel neglected; or sense they have been pushed aside by your business. Or worse still watch you spend more time serve your lazy ambitious overweight pastor in his “house for God”?

What about all your plans then? Will they have gone up in smoke? I trust not? Get a life for your wife and family’s sake for crying out loud. God is not a kill-joy. The KOH is righteousness joy and peace, the three things most Clerics don’t exhibit because they haven’t got them. Shouldn’t you be training your child in the way that he or she should go; and not the way these preachers have failed to demonstrate? With Christ’s help it can be a rewarding and blessed experience believe me.
We sold our home and went to America before it was too late where we purchased a 28ft motor home; pulled a station wagon behind it, and for 12 months travelled thousands of miles around the US and Canada. No it was not irresponsible; it was absolutely right for us as a family and none too soon.
Don’t be the richest people in the cemetery; spend some quality time with your family before they leave to cleave. Why should Clerics and their families be the only ones to take junket trips (at your expense)?

How often has the following been enacted before our eyes by those who claim they stand in proxy before God for us. Who gave these surrogates the right to tell us to follow their instructions? They insist God has given them authority to rule over us, even though the families of the majority are a shambles. The doctrine of “covering” peddled by Clerics is designed to make saints compliant and more reliant upon church services than they are upon God.
Most Christians wouldn’t know what to do if their pastor and church disappeared over night.
It happened in China and in Eastern Europe to millions of Christians.
Jesus said follow me and take up your cross and learn ME and you shall find rest for your souls.

Fathers have been delegated by God to constitute their families in a manner that ensures they will follow the Lord. Church leaders countermand His instructions by insisting that we submit to them and come under their covering. I would dearly like to be a fly on the wall in some of their homes and find out what really takes place inside them.

Learn from the past:
Eli held the two highest Offices in the land.
Now Eli was very old; and he heard all that his sons did unto all Israel, (he never had a clue what they were up to he had to hear about it) and how that they lay with the women that did service at the door of the tent of meeting. And he said unto them, why do you such things for I hear of your evil dealings from all the people. Nay, my sons; for it is no good report that I hear: you make Jehovah's people to transgress. 1 Sam 2:22-24.

How could this be said of Eli? But hold on now, this should never be said of any children belonging to pastors or any followers of Christ. Eli must have spent many fretful hours sitting on his seat by the door of the Tabernacle contemplating what he should do as reports came constantly to his ears regards what those sons of Belial of his were up to. They were lying with women in the courts of the house of God. They were gorging themselves on the offerings made to God. For I have told him that I will judge his house for ever for the iniquity which he knew because his sons did bring a curse upon themselves and he restrained them not. 1 Samuel 3:13.

It’s not too late preacher. Don’t neglect the priestly altar in your home to go scale a religious ladder. Take responsibility for training your children before they kick over the traces and bolt? You will never get a better chance than the one God gave to you when first they saw the light of day.
I know you thought the Kings service came first, so did I, until I learned that the Kings Business and religious business are two different things.

Eli and Samuel were very busy men. So don’t make the workload your excuse. It won’t wash with God on that day when we all shall stand before Him to give an account of our stewardship in our home.
The cliché “saved to serve” in the manner used by evangelicals is a lie from the pit.
You thought you simply had to become involved if you were ever going to advance in the pyramid to become the “capstone” of your own little enterprise. They said God was relying on you, and you were a keystone, helping to hold a department together, so what else could you have done? You couldn’t just pull out could you? The project would have fallen to the ground if you did. It put a great strain on the marriage too; it was one of the reasons why so many of former friends got divorced. But shouldn’t I give my full attention to the prophecies spoken over me by the travelling presbytery? They told us to meditate in their prophecies over us day and night. Besides we must be about the movements business. Did I hear you say you made a covenant with the Pastor to serve him? And that you attended a series he took on “commitment” to his “house for God.” Then you agreed to it because he convinced you that in God’s eyes it was the right thing. You surely didn’t sign a bit of paper without scriptural (legal) advice? You really are a complete moron, aren’t you? Oops, sorry.

What about the assignment God gave you to care for your wife and children? Neglect them at your peril.
But you say you’re the treasurer; and you’re on the building committee too, and they said they can’t do without you; but evidently your wife and family can. Look, here comes the Sunday School Superintendent; thank God for the Sunday school teachers; they have taken such a load off my conscience by teaching my kids for me.

Somebody prophesied over me and told me “I was to become my pastor’s armour bearer”. But why can’t he carry his own sword; and mow his own lawn. I’m worn out.
What about the financial support for the missionaries? Surely we just can’t neglect them, can we? Shouldn’t we keep sending them money to help them to save the heathen and their children? Thank God for all the reports about their successes, it just makes you want to give more don’t you think?
At least something seems to be working. Well they tell us it is. I hope their right?

But what about your children, your flesh and blood, where are they tonight?
Were you there to pray with them and tuck them into bed at night when they were growing up? Did you instruct them in the ways of righteousness? Or did you leave it to the wife because you were out on church business. What about your children? Did you make it interesting when you talked to them about Jesus so they wanted to know more? Or were you too preoccupied with your ministry to spare them time?

Did you yell at them to get their attention, and threaten them to do things? You say indignantly “no I did not” I bribed them. Well I don’t know which one is the worst; but I know both ways are wrong. Did you show approval and complement them when they did their best. When you disapproved of things did you take them by the hand to their bedroom and pray about it with them? Yes, that’s right, I said pray with them. But you say ‘their too old to do that now’. Perhaps if you had done it when they were little you could have talked to them when they were teenagers.

We were told that involvement in the Lord’s work and attending services was our highest priority. The problem was we were always out of the home going to meetings. We were encouraged to attend every activity the church was involved in. The real reason behind this was to keep us from worldly pursuits, or going somewhere they didn’t approve of, like the church down the road. They inferred we would all backslide if we didn’t remain under their covering. So they sanctified us with services, prayer meetings, and kept us financially strapped via costly programs till we barely had enough to get by on?

Now if that approach is correct then why are so many preachers’ children backslidden and their wives such Jezebels? I have encountered more than a few who fitted that description believe me.
I can also think of a number of good honest men, who sallied forth thinking they were going to succeed in a foreign land by doing what they had failed to do at home.

Exodus 12:25-28 “and when you come into the land, and your children say to you, what is the reason for this act of worship? Then you will say this is the offering of the Lord's Passover; for he passed over the houses of the children of Israel in Egypt, when he sent death on the first-born Egyptian, and kept our families safe. And the people gave worship with bent heads. And the children of Israel went and did so; as the Lord had given orders to Moses and Aaron, so they did”.
That’s why you should break bread in your homes and take the opportunity to retell the gospel story to the whole family. You say that you would feel funny if you did, besides we are not allowed to have communion in our homes or outside of church’s operating hours.
One of my sons told me that when he was a boy he resented my being involved in the ministry because I was never at home but always at services. He felt the church had taken me away from him. Later certain elements within the church suggested I move on. After the way he perceived they treated me, his father, he said his resentment switched to the congregation. Anne and I got through it okay but it took the family quite a bit longer. I rejoice that he is following the Lord wholeheartedly today.

Actually it was a divine appointment because from that point in time we never looked back.
There are lots of mean critters sitting in pews believe me when I say that.
We draw from each others spirit. The spirit of Moses was upon Joshua because he laid his hands upon him. Good men draw the best out of us, and bad men impart the worst kinds of spiritual diseases.

So what did we do? Anne I and the talked things over with the family, then ran it by a close friend, and most importantly took it to the Lord and gave Him “power of veto”. The result was we sold our home and went to America. If we hadn’t done so I believe we might have lost our children, thank God we didn’t despite the fact we had a quiver full to consider, unlike some who had only one or two.

Did I hear you say you would like to do something about your situation but you’re too scared, (remember there’s no pocket in a shroud?) besides the church doesn’t really want you personally, as much as it wants your money and what it can do for them. So just pay up and shut up about what they do with what you give them. You’re more important to the Lord and each other, than what they’re trying to do to you believe me.

I heard someone say “can’t my wife teach the children while I’m serving in the church”? But she says she’s involved in the sister’s bible study and prayer meetings for the missionaries. It’s simply not possible to fit everything in? Well that’s what I’ve been trying to tell you since we began this discussion, because if you continue the way you’re going somebody will croak? Get real and save your home first. While you’re doing that successfully the Lord will find plenty of worthwhile things for you to do.

So do something with your lovely wife and family before it’s too late. If you feel you can’t just yet, then plan to do it soon, and while you’re at it take charge of your family under God’s guidance until you can.
Be a Good Samaritan: The first thing to learn about the Samaritan is; Jesus was not talking about himself. He was talking about you and me. He was saying to us “go and be a Good Samaritan”.
Love the lost, feed the hungry, visit the widows, heal the sick, shelter the homeless, clothe the naked, and be kind, merciful, and generous with what you have.
But what about going to church, because if I didn’t I would feel so guilty. Firstly “get over it”.
Then ask the Lord about it, and look for others of like persuasion to meet together with around His Table.
Here are some reasons why members of the Body of Christ should come together.

1. To break bread with each other and with the Lord. The Lord’s Table.
2. To edify and to provoke one another to love and good works.
3. And to receive His special gifts (Eph 4: 11) that He will send to you. That’s it.

You make it sound like there’s something wrong with wanting to serve the Lord? Of course not.
Don’t think I’m against serving the Lord. What ever gave you that idea? But there’s a big difference between serving the Lord; serving an institution; and financially supporting a fallible man in a pulpit.
Start to show you’re ready to serve Him with the loving and faithful stewardship of your wife and family.
Here’s the bottom line; take responsibility for your wife and family, and then ask Him, “What will you have me and her (together to do please Lord?”
At the end of the day when it’s all over the level of your faithfulness will be attributed to the person who set your goals. Why not let God set them for you, so you can hear Him say, “Well done good and faithful ones, enter into the joy of the Lord”.

In 1890 200,000 attended a missionary congress in New York. Their goal was to come up with a plan to evangelize the lost by the end of the 19th century, they failed. A hundred years later another attempt was made to evangelise the ten-forty window before year 2000, it suffered the same fate.
I really hope you’re mad by now, if you are then please keep in touch there’s more to come. I’ve barely scratched the surface.
P.S. The term the “The Great Commission” isn’t in the bible. Men planted it in your head.


The Biggest Losers In a Marriage Are the Children

Romans 1:31 void of understanding, faithless, and without natural affection, these are signs of the last days. Thank God the cloud in this story has a silver lining. So can yours?

“Mum and Dad's marriage was doomed. I knew they'd never get a Divorce but permanent separation was on the cards.
Thanks to God, He saved their marriage and along with it my three brothers lives and mine.
My parent’s engagement was what you'd probably call perfect. They hadn't dated anybody else and their parents agreed to their marriage but problems still arose.

Ten years after they were married things apparently went down hill. I didn't actual realise how my parents marriage was deteriorating until I was ten. It was then that I noticed that Mum and Dad made sarcastic remarks to each other, this was followed by Mum complaining to me about how Dad was annoying and horrible and that she basically didn't like him anymore. And Dad, well, he said the same things but about Mum.

This problem went on for quite some time and my brothers and I were convinced that either Mum or Dad would leave so all of us kids turned to our own means of escape. Adam, my eldest brother was getting ready to leave home, Daniel, my second eldest brother kept to himself and Joel, my younger brother started to drink and smoke. And I saw everyone turn away from our family I fell into depression. I rarely ate and very rarely talked to anyone.

And then God intervened. One of Mum's friends gave her a Marriage Ministries International brochure. Mum threw it in the bin because she thought that nothing could save her marriage. It was when Mum's friend basically dragged Mum and Dad along to an Outreach night that things started to change. Dad signed up immediately but Mum was still very apprehensive about the whole idea.

Because Marriage Ministries is totally based on Biblical principals it gave a very firm foundation to the rebuilding of Mum and Dad's marriage and the lives of my brothers and I. Immediately I saw changes occurring in both of my parents. They started to love each other again. I could see it in their faces. I realised then that God is very powerful. He'd taken the burden of my parent's marriage off of me and put Himself in control, and I can't thank Him enough for it. I was then free to worship God and live in His love. And my brothers slowly, one by one came back to God.
Mum and Dad are now leaders for Marriage Ministries International and things just keep on getting better. The whole family prays together at meal times for each other which is making us stronger as a family unit. MMI saves marriages but also the lives of kids. And now we can truly say that Joshua 24:15 applies to our family.
“ But as for me and my household, we will serve the Lord”. Joshua 24:15.

Written by Naomi Smith 16, on behalf of A--- 22; D--- 20; and J--- 15:
(Naomi gave me her permission to use her personal testimony)

 
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Shaun Kearney
en engape!