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Posts By Kara Murphy


How to Achieve Long-Term Change

Will I Ever Be Able to Change? Long-term change is what the Christian life is all about (Ephesians 4:22–24). Someday we will experience the most glorious change from corruptible to incorruptible and we look forward to that glorious day when we will be like Christ. Until that time, the Bible makes it clear that we must strive: “Not that I have already obtained this or am already perfect, but I press on to make it my own, because Christ Jesus has made me his own. Brothers, I do not consider that I have made it my own. But one thing. . .
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How Not to Lose Your Faith When Illness Strikes

Haven’t We Done This Before? Have you ever read a story about the people of Israel and thought, “Why are they losing faith again? Didn’t they learn their lesson the last time?” Hi, I’m Israel. Have we met? I thought I had learned the lesson of God’s grace being sufficient in my weakness during my early years of mothering, but the Lord has shown me that I need this lesson again. I have struggled with health issues off and on for many years. With so many pregnancies, it is inevitable to have fluctuating hormones and my body seems to have. . .
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Jesus Messed Up My Life

The Neat & Tidy Life I think it was soon after reading Discipline, the Glad Surrender and Ordering Your Private World that I developed the mistaken assumption that Jesus came to make my life neat and tidy. If I was a really good Christian I would follow a schedule, have a daily quiet time, keep up on all household chores, be perfectly consistent in disciplining the children, and always balance work, rest, and play. Perhaps I was the only one living under these assumptions, but I think that some of these ideas are a reflection of our Western and American. . .
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Indecent Exposure — Child Safety in a Pornographic World

Child Safety — Then & Now My first exposure to pornography was when I was a girl of nine during a visit to a neighbor’s house. Understandably, my parents had not discussed that possibility with me or prepared me for how to respond. In my parents’ defense, this was long before the days of easy-access Internet and TV content ratings. The video store kept “bad movies” in a back room. Gas stations kept “dirty” magazines behind the counter. I grew up in a middle class neighborhood almost entirely populated by conservative retired couples. The other family on the block was. . .
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Teaching Children to Use Money Wisely

“Mommy, is this fourteen cents or forty cents?” Gabriel asks. Teaching our children the value of money is an important responsibility that goes beyond teaching proper addition and subtraction skills. Joyful Giving The earliest and most important lesson we teach about money is the lesson of giving. Second Corinthians 9:7b informs us that “God loveth a cheerful giver.” This verse always reminds of the children’s Bible memory song by Steve Greene in which he laughs joyfully after each refrain. (“Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha!”) This is the attitude we are looking for in our children (and ourselves). We practice joyful. . .
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Rest Amid Responsibilities

“A man works from sun to sun but a woman’s work is never done.” Although this saying does not describe the work patterns of my husband, this saying is true when you view Sunday as the Christian sabbath. While a man who works outside the home can accomplish a complete cessation of his vocation for one day each week, which mothering duties do not fall under the category of “duties of necessity and mercy”? Sunday is the Hardest Day When my older children were all little, I remember feeling a little resentful of the Sunday bustle. Every other day of. . .
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A Time to Plant — Diligent Parenting while Your Children are Young

Discouragements of Motherhood One of the most difficult questions for a young mother to answer is “Am I doing a good job?” The farmer must sow in faith that his seeds will bring forth the harvest he seeks, yet it is difficult to foresee the kind of fruit the beliefs and actions of today will result in years to come. For some young mothers this truth is paralyzing. “What if I do or don’t do something that messes up my child for life?” Rest assured. Your child will be a messed up sinner for the rest of his earthly life.. . .
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Ducklings & Eaglets — Tailor Your Teaching to the Gifts of Your Children

Parenting Unique Children One of the most delightful aspects of parenting is observing the distinct differences between children. Ten times the Lord has allowed Steve and me to meet a new person created from the same raw materials, a child of the same man and woman. Each one is unique. There are some similarities, for sure. I often call Jonathan “Matthew” because he looks so much like his brother at this age. At church, one look determines at a glance that “that is a Murphy,”except for maybe Gabriel. Even within this tight genetic pool, that fellow looks completely different from. . .
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Raising Boys — A Boy Named Sue

Principles for Raising Boys Five-year-old Gabriel snuggled deeper into covers, his arm protectively cradling something. Granny, to whom the task had fallen to tuck him into bed, shifted the blanket back revealing not the teddy bear she expected, but a machete. Raising boys to be men is not a task for the faint of heart. In God’s (sometimes humorous) sovereignty, He has given us eight of these creatures to rear for His glory. Life with boys is often noisy, dirty, and physical. Crazy exploits, wrestling matches, and inventing unsafe structures define my boys’ days. Guests to our home chuckle at. . .
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Hospitality: Serving a Killer Meal

Hospitality Feeds Souls Hot dogs, baked beans, and chips—that’s the first dinner I served our next door neighbor boy. (Hey, it was a bad week!) Perhaps not the most nourishing meal for his body, but this dinner fed his soul. Nick is like many twelve-year-old boys in our country. Both parents work full-time outside the home, he is an only child, public schooled, and most of his meals go from box to microwave to TV tray. We rarely saw him outside. He relied on video games and movies to fill his lonely after-school hours. His parents are nice people, church. . .
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Where the Wild Things Are

Homeschooling mothers are the most fearful set of people on the planet. We fear whether our children are being properly socialized. We fear if we are doing too little or too much academic work. We fear whether we are doing it right. (“It” defined here as whatever a particular homeschooling speaker, author, or friend thinks is the right way to homeschool.) Are we studying the right subjects or enough subjects? Should we teach reading early or late, in English or Latin or Greek, or at all? What if I miss something important? How will I teach my child chemistry? Then. . .
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A Cartoon Jesus

Children’s Bible Stories In the Sunday school classrooms in which I taught years ago, each weekly lesson had a main idea that we repeated over and over. Platitudes such as “God loves me,” “I am special to God,” and “We are kind to one another” filled the teacher’s manual. Curiously, we did not see “God is angry at the wicked every day.” Unfortunately, twentieth century American Christians more often take our cues from Frobel and Montessori than from the Word of God. If we are to train up a generation of God-fearing Christians, we must change both the methods and. . .
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Mommy Time

God gives us many unlimited blessings—grace, forgiveness, peace, but one gift that is not unlimited is time. The Bible instructs us to redeem the time and this is a lesson that God is teaching me. When my oldest children were very young, each day dragged. I counted the hours and minutes until Daddy came home, and I believed I would be in this season forever. As God has taken friends home, moms-of-many in their thirties and forties, He has been teaching me that I may not presume upon God for the number of days I am given. Rather than make. . .
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Kara Murphy

Kara Murphy.

Kara Murphy is a busy mom of ten children. She and her husband Steve own Organic Homeschooling, producing a curriculum using real books and natural methods (available in the Highlands store). They also enjoy talking about the wisdom they have gleaned from years of parenting on the HomeWise podcast found on this website.
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