Home » Children of God Publications » --title not yet entered into database--

The Family / Children of God

Internal Publications and Secret Directives

DISCLAIMER: The sole purpose of this page is to document the existence of a publication produced by The Family International a.k.a. The Family, Family of Love, Children of God and various pseudonyms (hereon referred to as TFI). It is provided for the record, for educational and research purposes, with the principal aim of promoting accountability by the TFI for its teachings and statements, which have proven detrimental to the lives of many. By replicating this material, exFamily.org neither endorses the views expressed in this publication nor justifies the existence of this publication and its statements. Reader discretion is advised. The material on this page may be unsuitable for minors and may contain disturbing words of racism, hate mongering, directives to unhealthy lifestyles and/or criminal activity, and/or contain plagiarized works.
THIS PUBLICATION MAY HAVE BEEN "SANITIZED." This digital format of this publication was extracted from TFI's HomeARC 99, which was subjected to encryption and editing by TFI, who, in order to hide its controversial writings and thus escape moral and/or legal accountability for past/present core beliefs and directives, sanitized (edited) and purged (deleted, destroyed, burned) its texts—both printed and electronic. Where possible, exFamily.org has compared this digital material with the cult's original paper-printed versions to ensure that this publication accurately reflects the original, uncensored version. Locations where the text has obviously or potentially been sanitized is hilighted with bright-red [DELETED] or [EDITED] markers.

FSM 300       DO/TS
Childcare Comments and Suggestions #3--Tips and Testimonies from Our Worldwide Family

       Schooling       1
       Word       8
       Parenting       9
       Small Homes       12
       Witnessing       13
       Video Viewing       15
       Activities       16
       Health and Safety       18
       Cute Kidz       19
       Prayer Time       20
       Pubs Reactions       20

© October 1996, The Family, Zurich, Switzerland


From Ben, Michael and Crystal; N. America
       Our schooling and outreach departments have been working very well together! We were a pioneer Home a year ago and arrived here with twenty children and six adults--three of them pregnant--no older teens and no YAs. We were anxious to get our schooling rolling--however, we had lots of follow-up and outreach to be done, so how could we balance all of this?
       Needless to say, we sure had a hard time, as in order to start our schooling, we were hardly doing any outreach. There was a need for funds, but we didn't want to let school slide as we'd formed this Home from three different Homes and the children were all on different levels.
       Well, after prayer and counsel, we decided to school the children for three hours in the morning and then go out in the afternoons on outreach! This worked very well. Depending on the day of the week, the type of outreach we do, etc., we leave after quiet time or right after lunch. We also leave a good skeleton crew at home so everything stays tidy and the babies, toddlers, etc., are well cared for. Our outreach overseer gives shiner prizes too, for added incentive, and this way we have lots of fun!
       The teachers have taken the kids out on provisioning pick-ups, follow-up and for the distribution of tools. This way their wonderful training continues!
       Some ideas for schooling the children while out:
       Make information cards of plants, animals, planets, etc., and read, discuss or flash while in the car.
       Go into a foreign food restaurant and ask about their country; such as a Korean restaurant, etc.
       On provisioning pick-ups with the OCs, we asked our meat contact to show us his warehouse, freezers and how the forklift operates and their safety procedures.
       While on a bus, we listened to two young men talk about their native countries--one was Chinese, one European, and they both spoke English.
       While in the van with JETTs and teens, one of our adults explained the zoning laws and how they work.
       One of our contacts recently visited the "Holy Land" and told the children all about his tour and all the exciting points of interest!

From Meekness, David, Shanti and Philip; N. America
       We set up our "Learning Center" for our OCs, one JETT and four junior teens. This is a large study room with a reading/art corner and individual desks for our students. We have been putting a lot more emphasis on the schooling of the children, as it seems to be an area that was easy to neglect in the past.
       A number of our children are a little behind in their schooling, but they are now receiving about six hours of school in addition to the minimum 12 hours a week for their age, which is making a real difference in their schooling! Even though it appeared to be a sacrifice in the beginning, we went ahead and included it on our schedule, making the commitment that we wouldn't interrupt this routine and additional school for other seemingly more "pressing" needs.
       We've also begun having regular educational excursions for all our groups, which the kids enjoy and learn a whole lot from! And we have scheduled trips to the library for all our teachers and are making sure that the teachers have time to plan their curriculum and research teaching materials. Childcare is turning out to be an inspiring and challenging ministry for our YA teachers and it's a tremendous answer to prayer, as our YA teachers are finding true fulfillment in taking up the challenge of educating our younger children! Praise the Lord!

From Zion and Grace Mountain (TS); N. America
       Well, we just got the children's reports today--95% are excellent, and 5% are A-, with a comment from the principal which says, "Your children are so loving and helpful to everyone, including the kids that are unloving to them. They have a lot of respect for all the adults in school and for everything that is school property. Your kids encourage a lot of students in our school who are losing hope in life--they are wonderful! Where did you get them?" One of our daughters read this note before they left school, so she went to their principal's office and she said, "Sir, thanks for the note you wrote to my parents. But to answer your question, my mom and dad always say they ordered us from Heaven!" And the principal said, "Well, I certainly don't doubt that!" Thank You Jesus!

From Zac, Hope and Anna; N. America
       Several of our kids go to a local community program of classes where they learn swimming, and three of our teen girls are also learning ice-skating. We get complimentary passes to these classes as we do "community work" in the form of various shows and work for the local council here. These classes are from beginner to advanced levels. The kids love it and we already have met quite a few people who've seen them perform, so we're already quite well known as "The Family." We've been very well received and respected in meeting people and making friends during our bi-weekly visits.
       Several kids in our Home also receive a "private" math class once a week at home from a certified teacher--a friend of the Family--and this is paid for by our parents, who help us with regular financial support. This friendly teacher has also given us a very good personal recommendation on our home schooling and way of life, and will be administering the local, state-required yearly examinations to our kids to assess and grade their basic skills. Our kids have already had good coaching for this exam and the teacher is confident they'll get good grades in the upcoming tests, which they'll take at home. This has been a good witness and testimony, as many friends respect our home schooling and the care and attention we give our kids.

From Dave, Dawn and Sara; N. America
       A schooling method we have found that works quite well for our junior teens is to write out weekly school assignments (i.e., spelling words, a language arts assignment, math pages, reading assignment, etc.) and then have certain days when different assignments are due. This way each teen can work at his own pace and learn to study on his own. We do have a little trouble sometimes getting them to do school, and we are trying to find new ways to make things inspiring for them. However, they definitely seem to prefer the assignment method to sitting in a class all together, and some of them have made a marked improvement in different areas since we started using this method.

From HCS; Japan
       We've been working with the teens during our scholastics time on public speaking. We watched a how-to video on public speaking and read from How to Love on the subject, practicing reading out loud in class. Over a period of two weeks or so, each of the teens worked on a three-to-five minute speech which they delivered on a subject related to Africa, which is the area that we are studying in geography. It's been good training. The teens are seeing the need to have poise, confidence, to establish eye contact and to speak with conviction.
       Also, during this time that we've been studying the geography of Africa, we've looked up different MO quotes about Africa. So we're endeavoring to go to the pubs and make our scholastics more Word-based.

From Dave, Susana and Marie YA; L. America
       A suggestion for Homes that might not have many reference books for the kids: We became members of the English library here for ten dollars a year. We're allowed to check out three items at a time, including educational and Family rated videos. They have many approved and recommended books, and we can check them out for two weeks at a time.

From Andrew, Priscilla and Michael; N. America
       We've been pioneering for about seven weeks, and therefore have been having school mainly in the evenings. We've got two public library cards and have viewed some nice documentaries; for instance, "Australia," "The Holy Land" and "Natural Wonders." Also, before Easter, on our way to and from witnessing, we listened to an audio recording of "The Robe," which talked a lot about life in ancient Rome and Jesus' time on earth. It really followed Scripture, regarding the Lord's crucifixion, resurrection and the Early Church. We're seeing it's possible and fun to have some of our "education on the run," so to speak, and incorporate it with witnessing. We also provisioned fun activities like roller skating, ice-skating, and miniature golf!

From Phillip, Kasia and Susanne; Poland
       We have a fun game that we play with the children to help them learn the references to their memory verses. We play the Memory Book Tapes for them, and during the song they have to try to find the verse in their Bibles. This not only teaches them the reference but also familiarizes them with where to find things in the Bible.
       To redeem the time while brushing and fixing our girls' hair, which takes a while, their teacher has them read some local language texts to her.
       For teaching the local language, we have found it worthwhile to invest in a good book, one which emphasizes learning conversation, and with basic grammar as well. The one we found is divided into lessons which are just right for about an hour of teaching. The vocabulary can then be assigned as homework for the children to learn before their next lesson. Having a good book to work from helps us to benefit from the experience of skilled teachers, as we have found that most brethren don't really know how to teach a language. It also provides clearly defined goals to reach.

From Vessel and Rose (TS); N. America
       Our oldest daughter, Leah, was nominated for "Student of the Month" at her high school! It's quite an honor, as it's a fairly large school and one of the best (most demanding) in Idaho!

From Paul and Clare Praymore (TS); N. America
       Our daughter was elected to the National Honor Society at her high school.

From Newheart and Serena Smiles (TS); N. America
       All four of our kids in public schools have "A" averages! Thank You Jesus!

From Eman, Anna, Meek and Steve; N. America
       The overall training and teaching of the teens is going to be quite a challenge. I'm especially inspired with keeping portfolios of the kids' training through records and pictures.
       I heard a story about an employer who hired a home-schooled boy over a college graduate. When the home-schooled boy came in, he had a portfolio with pictures of all he had done since he was 12, letters of thanks from neighbors for jobs well done, as well as from his parents for things he'd done. The employer said that it was like having the boy's character reference laid out before him. It showed the value of picture-taking and of writing recommendations and thank-you's to our teens for the various ministries they do. We need to also make sure we're faithful to give them Certificates of Accomplishment for things learned to put into their portfolios.

From Sam, Ben, Christie and Christina; N. America
       Our kids go witnessing three times every two weeks. The Home voted that all the kids' witnessing income would go to childcare and schooling needs, so we've been able to get different kids' needs, which is very inspiring. The children are very happy to go witnessing and just love it. They do very well, too!

From Matthew, Josue and Praise; L. America
       In smaller Homes, the kids (MCs/OCs/JETTs) sometimes need a bit more motivation in certain areas of school and their studies--motivation that they would get from their bigger classes before.
       The Girl Scouts have a fun program of earning badges for certain skills learned. They have a list of skills, with requirements for getting the badge, and when they finish each point their mom or teacher signs it, and when the whole list is done they earn the badge. A program like this could be super fun for the kids if created and based on Family topics.
       Once they've earned merit, they get the reward (maybe stickers for a special chart or something similar). Topics could include Survival Sam, practical life skills, Bible themes, etc. Practical topics, like first-aid, handicrafts, etc., could even be copied from the Girl Scouts' program.
       ({\ul \i Editor's note}: Good idea! While we don't have something like this organized on a Family-wide basis at this time [EDITED: "though we have often considered it"], perhaps this is something an individual Home could do for their kids. Or perhaps several Homes in a city could do it together. It's helpful for the kids to receive some kind of "permanent" reward for accomplishment, a certificate, or a badge, etc. Badges can be simple ones cut from colored felt, and perhaps sewn on a scarf or tie or sash, rather than on a shirt, so the kids won't grow out of it. If someone has a burden to design a simple program along these lines that others can benefit from, please contact your FED, so others can benefit too.
       (Certificates or badges could be awarded for studies they complete--for example, after learning their multiplication tables or finishing a certain workbook, or a section of the Word Curriculum such as all the Feed My Lambs verses or all the Memory Book verses, or for completing the MC Daily Bread reading list or for different skills they learn, such as swimming, dancing, guitar playing, etc. Or, the certificates or badges could be related to their witnessing or outreach.
       (As an alternative, shiner prizes could be given. A shiner prize could be a special snack, or it could also be little stickers, or hearts on a chart, maybe even an outing or a fun workbook, or a new Bible if they need one. These shiner prizes would also help the kids and teachers to work towards goals.
{\i        (A helpful article to refer to is "Mega Skills" [Raise `em Right, page 348]--especially Mega Skill 2: Motivation [EDITED: "page 352"]. Also, for a list of skills and development steps that could be used for such a program, see Raise `em Right, pages 90-92.}
{\i        ("401 Ways to Get Your Kids to Work at Home" [Raise `em Right, page 171] is another very good, very practical chapter on the subject.)}

From Stephen, Angela and Pat; Italy
       Teacher teamworking has been a help in meeting the scholastic needs of all the children in our Home. Different parents have been helping to teach subjects they're gifted in, and it has brought more inspiration to our home schooling.

From David and Maria Clara (TS); Europe
       When we came to Italy 4½ years ago, I decided to home school my children and I put my whole heart into it. In the beginning it was a little hard, especially since we had to start learning Italian from scratch. I cried out to the Lord for help every day for my four children, that they could faithfully study Italian school books, and that they would have good discipline, learn all their scholastic subjects as well as have good Word time.--And with desperate prayer we made it! All glory to Jesus and the excellent Family training we have received.
       At the end of the school year I took my children to be tested at the official public school. As a result of our home schooling, our children got their certificates with excellent results! The teachers that tested our children according to their grades and ages were amazed at their high standard of education in all areas, plus their exceptional example of Christian behavior, courtesy and personal maturity. This was a real inspiration and encouragement for us to keep going and keep fighting for the Lord and His Kingdom.

From Matthew (TS); Europe
       I went to PTA at the school my two daughters attend. One of the teachers commented, "Usually when new kids come to the school they are inspired at first, but after a while it fades away and sometimes they become a little hard to handle. Though it is very unusual, Sara and Angelika have kept on being inspired. And that's not all, they are an inspiration to the teachers as well!" Thank the Lord for good training in the Family!

From James and Anna; N. America
       When we moved to a small Home and I began teaching all my kids myself, I found myself in a dilemma about how to keep all of their school planners updated and keep up with their schooling. But I found a solution that has been working really well!
       For each of my kids, 1st grade through 10th grade, I set up a spiral notebook for the sole purpose of planning their work each week and logging all the things they do besides their schooling.
       For the younger kids--my 1st, 2nd and 6th grader--I plan once a week, writing for them what they should do each day, what pages to work on, what books to use for reference material. Each week they have books to read and write about, plus their spelling. At the same time that I plan, I also correct their work from the previous week. Then on any pages that were not done correctly, I have them do the parts they missed over again with me to ensure they are doing them right.
       We have also been going to the local library to check out books that will help them in the different subjects they are studying. My teens log, on a daily basis, what they have done, how many pages they did from their workbooks, what book reports they wrote, etc.
       ({\ul \i Editor's Note}: Kids can be taught and encouraged to keep their own logs at even earlier ages than the teen years, which helps save the adults' time.)
       In these notebooks we also log educational type outings. (On parent day we try to go to museums and things like that.) For my records (other than copies of the children's work) I only need this one notebook for each child as it has everything in it, even their grades. I thought I would pass this on in case there are any other mommies in pioneer situations or smaller Homes facing the same dilemma as I was of so many loose papers!

From Ben, Ruth and Vessel; Mexico
       Right now we have four new teens in our training program, as well as our three JETTs. We give them two classes a day, three days a week, and one class on their witnessing days. They witness three days a week. We made notebooks for them to keep their reactions to classes and the Letters they read. In the front we pasted the list of 90 Letters for new disciples from the Love Charter, and the references from the Memory Book, so they can check them off as they read and learn them. We have seen a big change in the teens and JETTs as the Word takes effect in their lives.

From Marcus and Claire (TS); Europe
       We'd like to share a few tips about our home schooling: How do you give school to so many grades at one time? We're still battling it, but we found a few things that were a help. We realized with fewer people to teach school, we had to start teaching our 7-9th graders to study themselves. The younger kids need their teacher there to establish them in the basics, but once the kids are older, it seems the most important things to teach them are good study habits and how to find the knowledge they need.
       {\ul \i (Editor's note}: It's helpful to begin teaching the children how to study on their own as early as the second grade, as these habits will help them to continue to learn even when you can't give them your full attention.)
       We started going over the classes together in the How To Get Things Done on studying, speed-reading, memory, etc. and had individual meetings with them to discuss their school projects and set goals. Sometimes we would encourage them to take their books and sit in the study hall in the local library, where it is quiet and conducive to studying. We are starting to work more and more on making a study course (except for ongoing drill work in math and language arts) as Word-based as possible, so they can get into more in-depth studies.

From Sarah, Dove and Stephen; Pacific
       We have been doing our schooling by families and have been trying it this way for a few months. We really like it this way, as it puts you in touch with what your own children are doing and it is fun spending time teaching your children. We did reassess whether or not we wanted to do it this way again as it was the beginning of the school year, or whether we wanted to school by groups again, but we opted for schooling by families. As we sleep in family groups and often do our dishes, table setting, etc., in families, it has enabled us to become more familiar with our children's work habits and to look into more aspects of our children's lives, giving us a more well-rounded working relationship with them.
       The peer pressure is not nearly so strong and we have seen members of each family becoming closer as they fellowship with each other (their own brothers and sisters) during these times, when previously they would have been in groups and fellowshipping with their peers. It's been heartwarming to see the older children playing more with the younger ones in their own family instead of only being with their "friends," so to speak. We have been finding that you can work more with your older child and do the school work that they are interested in, and that you have more flexibility as you usually only have one OC in each group.
       The older ones are learning to teach themselves and do their own research as "Mum" sometimes can't, if she is busy teaching the younger ones. So we are sold on it, and although at first we wondered how we were going to teach all the different ages, it hasn't been as complicated as we had thought it would be. The little ones learn from what you are teaching the big ones when it comes to teaching a subject such as social studies, as they are such sponges and listen all the time, even if they are just playing around while you teach.
       We have found that this has put us more in touch with our children, as we couldn't really see where they were at so clearly just having them at parent time and one day a week. It has also helped with getting more of a handle on parental discipline and control of our kids, which is a blessing, and has been a real need. It's so exciting teaching our children.

From Giddel, Kumiko, Joan and Christina; Pacific
       We took the OCs and MCs to help do the Home's monthly shopping this month. They learned to use calculators, choose things carefully, and have good manners in public. Afterwards they wrote a short report about their experiences.

From David Komic; SEA
       When the time for scholastic tests comes around, I get a bit concerned that we have properly covered all the curriculum material and that the kids have learned it properly. Some kids are slower, sometimes we have interruptions due to sickness, etc. But the Lord supplied a stock of large flashcards, and gave us a new idea. We started summarizing the key points to be covered in the marking periods by writing them in bold print on the cards (i.e. "An adjective DESCRIBES a noun." Example: funny clown, little rabbit, etc.)
       Work from grade one on up can be summarized and presented like this, then as I work through the curriculum with the kids, I can keep up a constant review to help them remember.

From Ammi, Philip, Mary and Benny; SEA
       This month I tried having the children work individually and included more research work in their scholastics. There are just six children, so it's easy to spend time with each one daily. They're given their assignments for the week and each child can decide when and how he wants to organize his time. Some choose to do a little of each subject every day. Others decided to have math one day, science another day, etc. This way, if a child was very interested in doing a particular subject, he didn't have to stop at any particular time, but was free to enjoy it and learn as long as he liked to during scholastic hours, as long as he completes all his assignments by the end of the week. On Friday we have our tests. It's been working quite well and they all enjoy studying this way!

From Tim and Rachel (TS); Europe
       This month we got our home schooling approved. We applied first to the local schools and had a good meeting with the two principals. Martin and Maria (who live next door) applied at the same time, so they treat us as one unit even though each individual family is responsible for their own children's schooling. Here, it is the city council who decide if a home schooling application is to be approved or not. The school delivered our case to a representative for the city board. This man came to visit us one morning to get a firsthand impression of how we do our schooling.
       He went from room to room in our two flats, talking with the children and looking at their books. Then we had coffee and cookies, which the children had baked, and we had a very good talk. He told us of his own experience a few years back, when he was the principal of a school in a foreign country. He lived with his wife and three children in the school where he taught his own children along with 20 others. These two and a half years, he said, were the most precious in their life as a family. Being able to live and work with his kids 24 hours a day had united them as a family. So he really had the vision for what we are doing.
       After coffee, Martin and Maria's girls sang Christmas songs with BMTs and microphones. Then our three boys took their guitar and shaker and did a song acoustically. After the song he smiled and said to Michael (9), "I saw you in the city singing and asked myself, `Who are these boys who sing so incredibly well?!'" As he left he said, "It was really fun for me to be able to experience this!"
       He phoned us the day after our case had been up for discussion in the city council and said, "No one was against it!" It was unanimously approved, which is unusual here. Thank the Lord!

From Mark and Faith; India Area
       Our team has six children. Our oldest daughter teaches school to our youngest (2) in the morning, while one adult teaches the other four, and then in the afternoon during quiet time, our oldest has school. It is helping our oldest to grow up and take responsibility for her younger brothers and sisters. We usually have another teacher with her for added inspiration and input.


From Dulci; Europe
       Children's memory work tip: For quite a while the children's memory work had been a weakness, very inconsistent and not making much progress. The Lord gave me an idea which is working very well.
       I followed the Word Curriculum memory section for each one of my children's age groups and put everything they are supposed to memorize in a book with plastic pockets. Each one has their own little book. I photocopied the different chapters, rhymes, checklists, etc., and put them into the respective books, so at a quick glance you can see what they need to cover for their age. It makes it very easy for the child to review alone during rest time. I also mark what they have memorized already. If there are any pictures to go along with it, I let them color them after memorizing the section.
       It's been fun doing it this way, as it gives the children a feeling of accomplishment. I also let them choose what they would like to memorize next, which gives them more incentive. I'm very encouraged that it really does work, as my two-year-old has learned all the Feed My Lambs verses for her age, the Lord's Prayer, Psalm 23, some of the "Devotion in Motion" poems from the Rhyme Book, etc. in a very short time--just by having the book right there at hand. She loves to open it and quote everything over and over again.

From Ammi, Mary, Philip and Sharon; SEA
       We've divided up the DB sections in the Word Curriculum so that the older children have a reading assignment for each day's quiet time. This way they're able to steadily work through the Word Curriculum, as well as redeem the time during quiet time, making it more quality reading than just skimming through different books or reading the same things over and over. We found that working through it systematically makes it clearer for the home-schooling records too, as we can log what the kids actually read individually each day.
       Also, one day of the week we give them reading assignments on the areas they need to work on, which helps give them the vision and more of a Word-based attitude on how to combat their different weaknesses. It seems to be working quite well.
       ({\ul \i Editor's note}: This sounds like a good idea. Please make sure these reading times are supervised, as mentioned in the Word Curriculum OC section, page 18: "To be read with teacher or parent or during closely supervised class or study hall only.")

From Psalms of David and Isaac (TS); N. America
       The Lord inspired me with an idea to make Word studies fun for the children! We pick a theme that's interesting to the kids, i.e., "Light." The study could be called "God's Light Show." Using a flashlight as a physical illustration, we hunt in a treasure box for the Word jewels (different-colored flashcards), which we looked up in a Bible concordance under "light." When we discover a Word jewel on "light" we read it out loud, by flashlight.

From Steven, Katrina, Rosita and Christina; L. America
       An idea that we are trying in our Home is typing some of the main quotes from the pubs that we read each week and putting a quote a day on the bulletin board to refresh our memory of the main lessons that we want to apply in our hearts and/or Home. Then as we put up the new quote for the day, we post the used quotes around the house and rotate them so that we constantly have new quotes in our bathrooms, bedrooms, kitchen, etc.

From the HCS; Pacific
       Recently there has been a renewed desire on the part of the teens to get in the Word, thanks to two or three really inspired Cat Book studies on the Word. They were very well done and we got some good reactions and commitments made by the teens to really press in and get in the Word.


From Ruth, Ben, Topacio and Vessel; L. America
       We learned a lesson along the lines of trying to let our children and folks in our Homes work at whatever makes them fulfilled, or have the talent for, etc., during a road trip.
       One of the girls hadn't been behaving very well during the practice sessions of the OC/MC singing team. Her teacher and the shepherd in the Home had been trying to encourage her to do better, to cooperate, etc., but she just didn't seem to want to "get the victory," as we so often put it! Well, the final decision was for her to stay home and not go on the road, as she also wasn't smiling or putting her whole heart into the dancing.
       When I returned, she seemed quite content to be in the Home, helping with the toddlers some days, and helping her daddy with the puppets on other days. It seems that she really didn't have much of a burden to go on the road, or to even be in the singing group, but was happier being home with us and being a "holy hole" here, especially wanting to help with the puppets and even learning how to be a help with the show!
       What we thought was going to be a "correction" and "teach her a lesson" by having to stay home was what she really wanted in the first place! So it's important to take time with people to see what they want to do. Lizzy (15) also wanted to stay home to help with her ministry with the toddlers, rather than go on the road. Although she does want to continue to sing locally, she had a burden to stay this time to be a help in the Home.
       I guess a good lesson from this is to not try to impose on our children what we think is the "Lord's calling" for them, or what we feel is the most exciting thing to do, but to keep in close touch with them and their burdens and likes and find out where they feel their talents lie. Both of these girls seem to prefer behind-the-scenes type work, which is actually a real blessing, considering there aren't that many young people who are interested in that!

From Claire; N. America
       I've been praying for a victory over nagging, and after reading prophecies from the Lord encouraging us to labor in prayer over our children, I started trying to turn to prayer instead of nagging, with promising results!
       I'll give an example: One of the OCs was looking at a road map with a couple of other kids in the living room. The kids left, except for the girl, and I was about to tell her to be sure and fold up the map and put it away. Instead of saying anything, I just prayed that she would do it, and sure enough she folded it up just right and put it away! Thank You Jesus! Lord help me to be faithful to pray instead of nag!

From Michael, Michelle and Nina; Europe
       We had a beautiful childcare meeting this month in which we mainly concentrated on praying for the children individually! This was inspired by the wonderful prophecy in "How to Have a Happy Home" about the importance of taking our children to the Lord in prayer. We collected all the prayer requests for each child in an open-forum way, where the parents of the child would start with anything they had on their hearts, and the teachers and others added on. It was very unifying to hear everyone's comments about the children, as they were so uplifting and sweet. We assigned the prayer requests for each child, and each person then claimed a precious promise and prayed for the child they had designated to them.

From Samuel, Florence, Joseph and Comfort; N. America
       We are basically two families in the Home. Both our families are learning precious lessons about how to share our hearts and communicate lovingly about our children's discipline. We're seeing the importance of communicating any differences or misunderstandings in love and understanding, putting ourselves in each other's shoes and realizing how we would like others to talk to us in a spirit of faith and love about our children's NWOs. We're also seeing that we need to work on being more united about the children's overall discipline.

From Jonathan, Amor, Zech and Hannah; N. America
       We've been studying the Charter, trying to grasp and apply its principles, and have been working on helping the teens, JETTs and children to do the same. It has seemed like quite a battle sometimes to learn how to love and to express love more--it seems we take one step forward, and then slide back some. But we know overall that the Word is taking effect and isn't going to return void! We don't know if it's just here in the States, but the worldly influence is so strong and it seems no matter what we do, just being here affects the kids and us. We know the answer is the Lord, the Word and just committing our all daily to His service, but it seems such a battle to "clean up" the worldly and ungodly thoughts and habits that we, and especially the younger generation, have developed over the past years.
       It's quite possible that we're just now recognizing the depth and extent of them, as we're tuning into our children in a much deeper and more consistent way since the introduction of the Charter. But it seems a major project and one of the biggest challenges of our lives is how to love and inspire them, help them develop a relationship with the Lord, and train them for God's service. We have recognized that the responsibility for our kids doesn't fall on the Family or the shepherds or even the childcare workers and teachers, but on us as parents.

From Paul of Joy, (TS); Pacific
       I've been learning lessons along the line of my attitude and relationship with our children. It dawned on me how strict I'd been, how uncompromising, to the point that they felt discouraged and confused at times. They are very sensitive and do want so much to please most of the time, but I had been unreasonable in my demands, expecting and demanding too much of them, beyond their capacity. Instead of being a loving shepherd who leads the way, I had become a pusher and shover.
       Since that realization I have been making an extra effort to be affectionate with the children. I have made a conscious effort to be tolerant when they make mistakes or don't quite do things exactly as I would expect. I started to praise them and give them credit for the good they do, even if they fall short of the goal sometimes, especially since they are trying their best.
       I have noticed that my youngest ones are starting to return the affection that I have been showing them, a beautiful reward in itself. The older ones have become more helpful and cooperative, now realizing that they will receive generous recognition for their efforts and a more sympathetic ear for their problems.
       The whole atmosphere of our Home has changed--it's now much happier and more loving. Lord help me to take the lesson to heart and not to lapse into taking those awful "shortcuts" again!

From Elise (Miracle); L. America
       More parental involvement with our children: I can say that I wholeheartedly agree with and am thankful for how the Lord is helping us as a Family to see how to implement this more in each of our Homes and find the right balance, as far as us parents helping and doing more with our children. I feel that this will not only help us parents be more aware of what is going on with our children, but also to see what a job it is and that much of it depends on us, as it can be a tendency in many cases to put the blame on the teachers. Lord help us!
       I believe it will also help in something which has concerned me for a while. I know it's common for children to behave better with others than with their parents. However, in many cases I feel that we have used this as an excuse for not at least trying and doing all that we can to control our children. At times I have asked myself if we have become too dependent on having others around to do the controlling for us. Even though we may need the help, we have leaned on it too much. What about so many other parents who are with their children, those who are live-out members, TSers, or even Christians in the world who home school their children? They try and do the best that they can with their children, and must be able to do quite well and control them if they are able to teach and school them!
       In the last two Homes I have been in where some of the teachers were also mothers who had some of their children in their classes, it has been quite a job for them. It has been for me, too, in similar situations, especially along the lines of how to have a balance in treating all of the children the same, not being too hard or too soft with your own, how to avoid familiarity. We do need and should ask for and desire the observations of others as to how we are handling these matters, as many times we are so close to it that we don't see it.
       I think it would be a real help and blessing to have more input along these lines, even if part of it is certain portions from the {\i Raise `em Right} as a type of reading list, which is something I have wanted to do for a while now but haven't been able to as of yet.
       ({\ul \i Editor's note}: With the shift to smaller Homes since the Charter, there has been much more parental involvement than before. You'll find a number of testimonies and tips in these Childcare Comments and Suggestions from parents who are taking up the challenge of parenting and home schooling their children, which we trust will be an encouragement and help. Please also see the box below for a reading list on the subject of parenting.)


       What Is That in Thine Hand? (ML #315)
       God's Gift Is God's Work (ML #745)
       Responsibilities of Parents (The Love Charter, page 32)
       Parental Duties Towards Their Children (Word Basics, pages 275-277)
       A Quiz for Parents (Raise `em Right, pages 378-379)
       Home Grown Kids (Raise `em Right, page 691)
       The Prime-Time Parenting Personality--Fulfillment for All (Raise `em Right, pages 721-724)
       Making Them Do It (Raise `em Right, pages 652-654)
       The Joy of Present-Moment Living (Raise `em Right, pages 682-684)
       Working Parents & Their Problems (Raise `em Right, page 718)
       How to Have a Happy Home (ML #2956, GN 616). Especially sections: "Care for the Sheep Within and Without Our Folds" (par. 27-35); "You Must Give Them the Spirit" (par.78-99); "Use the Children More" (par. 100-113)
       Loving Shepherding and Interaction--Charter Style! (ML #3018, GN 661)
       Help from Heaven--Answers to Your Questions (ML #3056, GN 686)
       Our Children's Education ( ML #3066, GN 694)


From Abe and Libby; E. Europe
       Parent time had become a battle, trying to keep track of all the kids and stay on top of their shepherding, making sure that everyone was happy and fulfilled. So the Lord showed us to have a weekly "Family Council." We designate one parent time a week or one hour of family day for our meeting. We bring up any topics that we want to, discuss them, and come to solutions and decisions together.
       This week we made good solid decisions about things that had been problem areas for a long time, like bed time, laundry, family day devotions, being more loving, boredom at parent time, summer witnessing preparations, etc. Even our little two-year-old had something to talk about!
       These may not seem like very big things, but they were things that have really hindered our unity as a family, so to get them out in the open and make decisions about them has been quite a victory. We posted all our resolutions on the back of the bedroom door and it has really cut down on our nagging and greatly helped our unity.

From Meekness N.; Belgium
       With all the exciting changes, being a single mother I have been learning to counsel more with my children. We get together and pray for direction. It's forcing our little family to all hear from the Lord, and when we do by faith what the Lord shows us, it is very encouraging to see the results. I wanted to share this as a lesson I have been learning, which is not to underestimate the vast potential of "What is that in thy hand?" It has also helped to mature the older ones and to motivate them to be bellwethers for the younger ones.

From Crystal Dear; India Area
       Something I found that's worked very well when one of the MCs or OCs was consistently misbehaving was to send the particular child, after talking to them, to a quiet place where they could take time to pray about their misbehavior. I'd make it clear that they could not just come back in a few minutes and say "I'm sorry," but had to really think it over and even write a little reaction about it--why they were misbehaving, what was wrong about it, what they wanted to do about it, etc. This way I felt they would make their own decision to do better rather than giving me stereotype answers just to get the correction over and done with. It helped them seek the Lord for themselves as they were desperate to come back to the activity. We got some beautiful victories this way. Thank You Jesus! I also learned the importance of praying desperately for them to make those right decisions.


From Milah, Sunny and Mary; Russia
       The children have been going witnessing and postering quite a bit. They go with different people in the Home, and often meet up with our outside witnessers and go witnessing with them. The children also take turns coming along to the Bible classes we give regularly. We all enjoy being here in Russia and living in a smaller Home, as the children feel much more a part of our work because they are involved in so many things and feel needed. They are very close to the nationals in our Home and enjoy doing things with them. We have just started having regular Russian classes, using the first half hour of school four times a week. Thank You Jesus!

From Masha; Russia
       I personally haven't had much time to go out witnessing, because most of it is spent with our children. But the Lord put in my heart to use our get-outs as an opportunity for witnessing. The children were so inspired and happy about this and tried to give posters to everyone they saw. During one hour of get-out, twelve people got saved and we distributed thirty posters. As a teacher I'm very thankful to see the changes in our children. In this little Home they feel such a part of our whole team and are growing very fast in learning life skills and responsibilities. Thank the Lord!

From Steven and Lily; Europe
       Since being on the road in a caravan we have had very feeding Word time early in the morning, and since we do not have a TV or VCR we have spent quite a few evenings with our children reading them Grandpa's Easter Story. It has really been an inspiration for all of us! The next reading project we are planning is "10,000 Miles of Miracles." It has been very special and unifying to have these evenings in the Word with our children--something that both they and we will always remember.

From Julia, Crystal, Sara and Dust; N. America
       The kids in our Home have been having quite a blast living in a campground! It's been very easy for us to schedule different daily activities--in the great outdoors! YA Teri was a real pillar, fulfilling the ministry of "mom" and managing the trailer when we were a little short-staffed, having four people in town house-hunting, provisioning, etc.
       The JETTs played a major role in literally "keeping the home fires burning"--they cooked the meals with the oversight of one of the adults. They blossomed tremendously knowing that they were a very important piece of the puzzle, and that we couldn't have done it without them!
       The kids did a special project on trees, reading Letters on the subject, going on nature walks, looking up the names of trees in the encyclopedia, and so forth. They all wrote poems on trees and gave them to our sweet campground personnel along with our appreciation show. They were really touched and impressed by our kids' creativity and love for them.
       We are very thankful for the precious brethren here in the area who took us in when we needed to stay in town during this time. We are also genuinely thankful for the Love Charter and all the changes and lessons it's bringing about.

From Mary, Ivan, and Nat; N. America
       Since being able to scale down in size, we find that we are able to have a more cozy atmosphere for the children and the parents are able to be more involved with their own children individually. We still are trying to get our childcare and JETT and teen shepherding balanced out since sending off the majority of our personnel. It's funny, but we are finding now that we could use a couple more people in the Home, whereas we were overflowing with personnel just a few weeks ago! We knew this would happen but it just takes a little time to get everyone more plugged in, in a more in-depth and quality type way. We are all having to work harder and dedicate and commit ourselves more completely to whatever ministry the Lord has called us to. We are very thankful for this. Everyone is finding it inspiring to be in a smaller Home.

From Peter and Mesha (TS); N. America
       Asaph (13) was always mumbling about how hard his math was, and I gave my typical mom response, "Well, if you had to do everything I had to do in a day..." So, we traded for a half-day! I did his school, and he did all my usual things! Boy, did the kids laugh when I got some math problems wrong! I learned that his school work is quite challenging, and Asaph learned that being mom is challenging as well. However, he was very competent with my jobs, and I'm thinking of giving him some added responsibility to help things flow more smoothly, some of the things I just can't seem to get done.


From David, Sara, Libby and Charity; E. Europe
       Some of our JETTs and teens have been ministering to girls of their age at a local orphanage, visiting regularly to witness to them through songs, puppet shows, Bible classes, etc. They've also spent time together playing volleyball, football, and recently went on an all-day hike organized by the orphanage. Through this regular contact we've seen the orphan girls open their hearts and they now see us as their true friends that give them a glimmer of hope and joy in their broken lives.
       What has been almost as beautiful to see is the impact it has had on our own teens' lives as they've reached out to help these precious girls. It has broken their hearts to hear of the suffering and hopelessness these girls experience. It has shown them how much it means to these girls to feel their love and the Lord's love coming through them. Our teens have started to see the girls develop faith in the Lord and His Word, and now a couple of them would love to be able to join us full-time to become missionaries so they can share this love with others!
       We have been very thankful that our kids have had this opportunity to experience firsthand the joy the Lord gives when we bring joy and happiness to others.
       We've learned how important it is for us to make this kind of witnessing opportunity available for our kids, to pray for and seek out places nearby where our JETTs and teens are able to pour out to those in need on a regular basis. Many times in the past they have done shows or personal witnessing, but have seldom developed a personal relationship with those they've witnessed to. I think, in any new situation, I would now make it a priority to find a situation which would allow our kids to experience this joy of ministering to people on a more personal and long-term basis.

From Peace Jubilee; N. America
       Coming to this Home has held some new experiences for me and my kids in the way of witnessing door-to-door with the tools. Previously when going DTD I had always been the person up front presenting the tools while the children just stood and smiled, and sometimes told their names and where they were born, etc. But we learned from Seth and Lily's kids that it's much more fruitful for the kids to make the initial contact and for the adult to just stand back and only step in if a question comes up that the kids can't answer or need help with or more explanation is needed.
       My son, Joseph (10), and I went along with Seth and his daughter, Merry (9), to see how they did it, and Joseph soon really got inspired that he could sell tapes too! Also my other son, Daniel (8), now really likes to be up front with the kids' tapes and does a good job. The "secret" we found is just to have a good, simple, clear opening line, and then the tapes sell themselves! The kids say, "Hi! My name is _____, and today we're showing people these tapes for kids. This one is a lullaby tape ("Sweet Dreams"), this one teaches good morals in song ("Magic of Love"), and this is a two-part series of Bible stories and songs ("Great Adventures"). We're with a missionary group called The Family, and we wondered if you would like one?"
       We've found that kids can most easily get out the kids' tapes. If they're not interested, we sweetly give them a "Somebody Loves You" tract or another tract, and thank them and move on. It's been very inspiring to see the kids happily meeting people and getting out the tools, and also praying with people.

From Stephen S.; Pacific
       Get-out has always been a dilemma for us "oldsters" as far as what to do and where to go! Since our recent move we have discovered the blessings of being a missionary in our own "backyard" and having fun at the same time! We found out that one of the largest universities is right down the road from our little Home and they love to play basketball. We use this opportunity to make friends and witness at the same time. We always "pray-up" beforehand, especially asking the Lord to lead us to potential sheep and keep us from accidents.
       Remembering that we are "foreigners" and that our sample really stands out greatly helps us to avoid being overly competitive and aggressive. Oftentimes we find that if we are just going in with the motive to have fun and get exercise, then our game goes much better and we are able to win at least two or three souls each time, and sometimes win the game as well! Ha! We are now inviting them over to the house every Sunday for English Bible classes, which is inspiring for the teens as they are all about the same age. Thank You Jesus!

From Jeremiah, Joy and Marianne; Pacific
       With the JETT and teen groups, we've been doing more outlining and note taking of Letters and poster studies. The kids really get into it. They like writing things down and making little marks in their own poster books. This also helps them have more conviction in getting out the posters as they know exactly what's in them.

From Faith (TS); Europe
       In my last report I wrote that it was hard for me to go out witnessing. But after reading about the mother with ten kids in the Power in Persecution (CLTP 21, page 10), I knew if she could, I could! I also read in the Home Educator about "Home School Burnouts" (Vol.1, Issue 2, page 4), when you feel everything is just too much, but you just need to relax. I have tried so hard in the flesh to keep it up, so instead of being a blessing I had become nagging and frustrated. Lord help me!
       I decided to just to put everything aside and take my baby, toddler and YC out witnessing. We had so much fun concentrating on soul winning. I went with my OC to old folks' homes and shopping centers where he would sing. This is what I want to teach my kids--witnessing and living by faith. But it's hard alone to train all of them, that's why it was a real blessing that Maria, my teen daughter, could stay over at Marcus and Claire's place and be out with their singing group, and Timmy, my OC, with the other OCs in the area in their singing group. It feels nice that we can give Jesus a present. We put up a big picture of a present on the wall and drew hearts for all the souls we won.

From Tim, Dove and Cris; L. America
       Probably other Homes have tried this idea already, but it worked out for us, so we wanted to share it! If a singing troupe needs singing outfits, a representative can approach the manager of some important store and offer them publicity or a show in exchange for the clothes they need for all the people that perform in the show. Last year a department store gave us brand-new clothes for 35 children and teens! This year we did a show in exchange for clothes for seven teens, JETTs, and a YC girl, which was a real blessing because we got these costumes right at the beginning of our Christmas push.


From Johnny B., Lily, Rebecca and James; L. America
       We are striving for a better balance in our use of documentary films and daytime movies for our smaller children's groups. The videos are a tremendous blessing, but we've noticed that sometimes our young teen and YA teachers go a bit overboard in their use. Any counsel you may have on this subject would be a blessing to us and perhaps also to other Homes as well.
       ({\ul \i Editor's note}: Something that may help in finding a better balance in the use of videos and movies for our younger children is to allot a certain amount of time each day for video-watching. For example, for preschool and toddler groups you might limit video time to half an hour each morning before lunch and half an hour before dinner. And maybe the preschoolers might have a weekly activity afternoon, and sometimes watch a movie for part of their activity.
       (It is so easy to fall back into watching the same videos over and over again, such as, "Bambi," or animated Bible stories. These videos are fun to watch every now and then, but not as a steady diet, as there are parts in all System videos that are not desirable to be too thoroughly ingrained in our kids' hearts. One thing that may help you to not fall back into watching the same videos over and over is to include video watching in your weekly school plan. For example, you could systematically work through all of a series, such as "My Bible Friends" or "Family Fun" or even the animated Bible stories, in order for the kids to watch something different every day. Also, if you are able to check out new documentaries from libraries, or tape them off of TV, these can help give the children good new learning experiences.
       (It's also important to frequently sit with the kids and discuss the videos that are watched, so as to make the most of this time and glean as many lessons as possible. However, it is not always necessary to view videos with the children. If the videos have been seen before once or twice and discussed with them at those times, then they would probably be able to view these videos on their own and understand and discern things correctly. And for some simpler videos, they also don't need explaining that much.
       (Once children have reached YC age, they have often seen some videos over and over. It's helpful to take note when this is the case and to give the children new input, to avoid them being bored, and also to give them greater opportunities to learn.)

From Michael, Rose and Peter; Canada
       In our Home we have learned the hard way about unsupervised watching of documentaries. Because we were a pioneer Home and didn't have our schooling organized, we often resorted to getting educational videos from the library and counted it as schooling to fill up gaps when we didn't get our scholastics time. The boys watched a lot of nature videos during the last few months and developed an appetite for them. Many times we just assumed they were mild and didn't preview them. But we noticed that the kids were becoming aggressive towards each other, imitating being predators and victims, etc. It seems their natural tendency is to absorb the evil and not pay much attention to the lesson or the good.
       ({\ul \i Editor's note}: Even with videos on nature, it's important to preview first before showing them to the children. Often times they are talking about predators and animals killing other animals, which may need further explanation from you, as well as guidance so they don't carry the wrong spirit and actions over into daily thoughts and relations with others.)

From Hannah, Samuel and Paciencia; L. America
       A problem we had with the children is that, due to our neglect, they were seeing the Bible cartoon videos without adult supervision or pow-wows, and were beginning to concentrate more on the negative portions portraying apparent violence. Besides copying the heroes, they were also mimicking the attitudes of the villains and even memorizing their lines and using these phrases against each other when they argued. This caused them to manifest some rather unhealthy attitudes towards each other. Thank the Lord we were able to expose the Devil's handiwork and have done Word studies with them, and now they are doing much better!
       ({\ul \i Editor's note}: Make sure the kids also go over the same stories from the Bible. If they see the Bible cartoon on Joseph, they could also have a study right from the Bible on Joseph, and even look in the Letters for any related studies, so they get a more seasoned, overall view of the story depicted in the Bible cartoon.
       (If you find that certain parts of these Bible cartoon videos are not bearing good fruit with your children, perhaps you can pull those from the shelf of frequently watched videos. Or someone can be there to fast-forward the parts that bear the bad fruit. Some of the Bible cartoon videos are better and more edifying than others, and different kids are affected differently by the same video.)
       (Please refer to the Letter, "If it's not the Word, Forget it!" ML #1388, DB 1. In this Letter Dad mentions how it's children's natural bent to pick up the negative and the bad. It's important to help them to dwell on the positive, not the negative.)


From Renee YA; India Area
       At the beginning of the month the whole Home enjoyed a beautiful four day vacation away from the city. Thank You Jesus! This was a very special time for all, especially the children. The families all roomed together in bungalows and the kids had a lot of special time with their parents, which was a blessing. They also did a lot of different activities which they usually don't do; for example, going swimming. Praise the Lord!

From Tim and Cheerful; SEA
       The Home here has a beautiful swimming pool which has been a real blessing, but there is no garden for the children to play in. So, with the help of a national brother we got permission from the owner of a plot of land behind our house, to clear the land and make a play area where the children can run and exercise. We provisioned a bulldozer to clear away the undergrowth and now we have a large field where the children can run to their heart's content. We are working on provisioning grass and playground equipment and even have a contact to help with a basketball and tennis court!

From Michael, Rose and Peter; N. America
       We visited a Recycling Depot and were given a tour and a class on how to sort out recyclable garbage, the items that they could make out of them, etc. It was very interesting, instructional and also convicting, as it showed the need to be faithful to sort the garbage in order to make it easier for the recycling and for the garbage men.

From Willing, Peter and Beth; Europe
       We just came back from a five-day vacation where all the children stayed with their parents in a bungalow park. The children got to do lots of fun activities, swimming, bowling, horse-riding, etc. Praise the Lord! The Lord is so good to us all and we can see the need to do something like this more often.

From John, Sara and Angel; L. America
       It has been a real blessing for the children to be able to go out witnessing a couple of afternoons a week. Distances are not so long here, so it is easy to get to a shopping center, airport, zoo or city park to witness with the children. Even our little preschoolers are a real success when they go out.
       Our Sundays have been increasingly busy with friends, sheep and neighbors visiting. Since Sunday has been our family day, and many parents were busy taking care of visitors, we decided to try something new for family day. Since most of the visitors arrive in the afternoon, we are now trying to have Family Day from lunch time on Saturday until lunch time on Sunday. This way we will not take another whole witnessing day off for Family Day. Something else that we would like to try is for the children to go busking on Sunday afternoon, and we are hoping that rearranging our Family Day will make this easier to bring to pass.

From Phineas, Joy, Amanecer and Abigail; N. America
       With so many pioneer Homes opening, when people are looking for housing, they could pray specifically for the Lord to supply a Home in front of a park. Apart from the tremendous personal witnessing opportunities, it is wonderful for the kids' get-out and very helpful to becoming known within a community.

From Charity, David, Trusty, Michelle and Paul; N. America
       The kids have been having weekly excursions, including the museum of natural history, the mint to see how coins are made, an outdoor historical museum to see how the western pioneers and settlers lived, after which we were able to provision meals out as a special treat for them.

From Anna, Eman, Tina and Phil; N. America
       Meek's dad bought us a one-year pass to the zoo, which allows us to take all of the children's groups to the zoo periodically. The zoo is quite large, close-by and clean. The Seattle Science Museum gave us 20 passes to the Science Museum and Special Effects Cinema. The Seattle Aquarium gave us 50 passes to the aquarium. The Omnidome, a special effects cinema, which has performances showing the eruption of Mt. St. Helens, gave us passes as well, and the bowling alley near our home, walking distance away, lets us take the kids bowling once a week.

From Daniel Merryheart (TS); N. America
       I recommend indoor sprouting, especially alfalfa, which has a complete spectrum of vitamins, for a cheap, fun-for-kids-to-grow veggie. It is especially good for indoor survival, as you can buy bulk seeds and store them for up to two years.

       From Tania, Becky and Lamb; Pacific
       We had a serious accident this month with Natalie (9), of Becky, who fell from a bike and lost her front teeth, requiring some emergency treatment at the hospital. Thank the Lord, the doctors and dentists have been able to fix her up quite well and re-insert the knocked-out teeth, though it will take a series of follow-up visits to finish.
       We all learned some sobering lessons on safety, as the kids had gone out without a lot of prayer and got into racing and not wearing their bicycle safety helmets, which are required by law here. (Doctors explained to us that a helmet would have taken the brunt of her fall and saved her from much of the injury.) Despite constant reminders to wear helmets when riding their bikes, they ignored the warning from us. It's been a lesson for us about insisting the kids follow safety rules we have, and for us to bathe the kids more in prayer, especially for get-out times. The kids were being supervised at the time but didn't listen to the warnings. We also learned how much more prayerful we need to stay with the children, especially in a situation where we are quite busy and there's a temptation for us to not keep our standard high in supervision and safety.

From Jareb, Claire and Mercy; SEA
       Remedy for fungal skin infections (external): We don't know if this works on all types of fungal skin infections, but it works well with the types we've experienced here in the tropics--the spotty, inflamed, itchy red areas under the arms or near the crotch area where sweat collects.
       Mix baking yeast with warm water (not too hot, as it kills the yeast, but like the temperature of a very warm bath) until it forms a thin paste. Let it sit for 10 minutes and then apply to the affected area. It helps relieve a lot of the itchiness almost immediately. Apply three times a day or so. Wash the skin well each time before reapplying the yeast paste. At night before bed is also a good time as it sits all night. After about four or five days the infection usually clears up. You smell a bit like bread dough, but it is a natural cure that seems to work well.

From Micah, Charity, Celeste and Sarah; SEA
       We had a potentially serious fire start in our boys' bedroom, which was discovered just in time before it set fire to the curtains. During a blackout a brother lit a candle and placed it on a ledge, and then left the room to fetch some things. In the meantime the candle fell and melted onto a tape recorder, which then caught fire. An alert teen boy discovered the fire. It was 10:15 at night and most folks were in bed. He shouted "FIRE!" to alert everyone, while another teen boy took a bucket of water and threw it, putting out the fire immediately.
       ({\ul \i Editor's note}: If the tape player had been plugged in, then water should not have been used, as water conducts electricity, so the water on and around the tape player--or any other electrical appliance--becomes part of the circuitry and dangerous to touch. In that case a fire extinguisher for electrical fires [EDITED: "usually carbon dioxide or a dry chemical"] is best, or if none available use baking soda or salt. Or, if safe to do so, unplug the tape recorder or electrical appliance first.)
       The Home pow-wowed the incident and we covered many serious lessons. We all had desperate prayer, thanking the Lord for His mercy. We then went on the attack to provision fire extinguishers and to ensure we have a safety ladder upstairs, as we only have one exit from our top floor. We only made a couple of phone calls and we already have provisioned four fire extinguishers and another one is promised.

From Lily; Europe
       One night after a long coughing spell, Kristian (4) asked me, crying, "Mummy, can I have my sword of the Word so I can fight the Devil with it?" (I had made him a cardboard sword and written healing verses on it.) And thus he peacefully fell asleep holding it. God bless him! So encouraging to see how our little ones trust and believe the Word.

From Jimmy, Joan and Mark; Pacific
       Our very good friend, Dr. H., came over to do physical examinations for all of the children for the home schooling records. This is the second time he has done this for us. He kept the records he did from last year with a real concern for the children. He's so precious, a real Dr. Koger type. He said that the doctor and God should be cooperating together. It's a blessing to have a friend like this when we need a doctor!


From Michael (TS); Europe
       Christopher (3) asked me when he should take his bath. "The water is running, honey!" I said. So he went to the bathroom to check and told me, "The water is not running, it is going into the bathtub!"

From Marie (18); SEA
       Arthur (5) sings, "You got in the storage and you're feeling low..."
       After watching "New Worlds to Discover," Leilani (3) asked me what a "walkamile" was. At first I didn't understand her, so she explained, "You know, those two boys on the video with the guitars had a walkamile in their shoes."
       The YCs were listening to the song "Heartaches, take them all to Jesus" when Mary (5) asked, "Does Jesus like hard eggs?"
       Abner (5) sings, "They that love God shall never eat for the last time."
       I was looking for a verse and couldn't find it, so Peter (7) said, "Why don't you just look it up in the tropical concordance?"
       Davida (3) asked me where I was going, so I told her that I was going shopping at the market. She looked quite concerned and after a few minutes she said, "You're not going to the market of the beast, are you?"
       Nina (2) loves to sing. One of her favorite songs is her version of "Silent Night": "Round yon virgin, mother is tired."
       Arthur (7) was trying to help me clean the room and then said, "We can finish the clean-up for you, why don't you just go and collapse" (meaning to say relax).

From Tabitha; Europe
       Adam (2) began to sing, "Play, play, play without ceasing!"

From Maresha YA; E. Europe
       Upon hearing the fire engine sirens outside, Vinny remarked with great concern: "Someone must have gotten sunburned."
       As a jeep passed by, Megumu (3) pointed out, "That's an Egypt!"
       Yoko (3) said, "I need some tights because my skirt is short-sleeved!"
       Three-year-old Daniel was on the porch with his hands raised praising the Lord at the top of his voice. When his mommy inquired about the reason for this show of excitement he exclaimed, "The clouds are moving, Jesus is coming back!"
       A favorite song of the YCs is "Jesus the Light." One day there was a strange smell around the house and one of the adults came upstairs and said, "What's that smell?" to which all the YCs answered, "Jesus!" The adult thought they didn't understand and said, "No, I said, `What is that smell?'" to which they all again responded, "Jesus!" (They thought she said "What's that spell?" as in the song.)
       I was talking to the group of 5-7 year-olds and said, "Could the following people please come over here." Before I said the names, Arthur (7) came right over and said, "I'm a following person!"

From Training Center; SEA
       From Christo (4): "Mommy, can you buy me a water lemon?" (watermelon).
       (After showering, combing his hair and putting on cologne) "I look handsome. You wanna see? Go look in the mirror!"

From Meekness; Europe
       During a conversation with someone, one adult said to another, "I can really see the hand of the Lord in that." My son Gabriel (3) who was playing in the room looked up and said, "How come you can see the hand of the Lord and I can't?"


From Jonathan and Amor; N. America
       We're taking time each day to pray and to listen to the Lord, and we're also setting aside one whole morning a week to have a special (longer and more desperate and wider scope) prayer, including praying for all our needs, our contacts, provisioning, income, etc. This is helping our children learn to depend more on prayer and to see that our God is a God of miracles. We're learning that He's willing to answer each petition we make if we'll only ask with a heart full of faith and trust.
       It was a little bit hard in the beginning, because none of the kids were in the habit of depending on desperate prayer, nor of waiting for the answer. But seeing the miracles that the Lord is doing, how He's blessing and how He's using the children to speak to us through His beautiful promises, is inspiring even the youngest ones to launch out by faith and share what the Lord is giving them.

From Jane and Gracia; L. America
       To pray, we use the Mini-Mop Cards (Activity Book 4, pg. Q38). We choose one card and pray for the theme on the card and claim the written verse on it.

From Mary; Europe
       Ever since we moved into this Home I have wanted to have a prayer room, as I've felt a real need in my personal life to get away and get on my knees and pour my heart out to Jesus without being disturbed. But we were always full to the brim with people and it never seemed to be able to work out, or even be a priority. Then we received the Letter "The Prayer Closet Dream" (ML #2974), and the same day we read it, we made a prayer room. It's beautiful!
       I read the Letter with the MCs and OCs and explained the need for our prayer room. They all really liked it. Then Nina (7) came to me yesterday and said, "Aunty Mary, I went to the prayer room today and read something and prayed." "Did you like it?" I asked. "Yes!" she said. Her eyes were shining from being with Jesus!

       ({\ul \i Editor's note}: These reactions were gathered over the last few years, so some are older than others, but they are still helpful and may serve as good reminders.)

Reactions to FSM #263, "Educating Our Children"

From Faithy YA; India Area
       This mag is wonderful! It has been an answer to my prayers for the children. I have always wanted our children to be able to go out witnessing more. It is something that I grew up on in the Family. It has helped me a lot in my relations with people and has kept me alive, and I wanted so much for our younger children to partake of that experience too. In our Home, since the month of December, we have been taking our MCs on up out witnessing quite a bit, and they are super turned on. Thank You Jesus! Our OCs have changed and have become much sweeter. A while ago our OCs had a few NWOs which we were pow-wowing with the Word and having classes, etc., but I think the real victory came when we started to take them out witnessing. The kids at first didn't know what to do or what to say, but as we helped them and showed them little by little they caught on, and they just flipped out. They now think about when the next witnessing team is going out or think about their "sheep," writing letters, etc., which is really inspiring. Thank You Jesus!

From Sunny; India Area
       I'd like to say how very thankful I am for this FSM and how very much I agree with all that's shared in it. I sincerely believe that witnessing is the key for our MCs and OCs and the solution to their problems just as much as it is for our JETTs, teens, YAs and adults.
       When I first began working with our little group of four OCs here, about two months ago, their world revolved pretty much around their doo-dads and knick-knacks and getting things for themselves, but since they began going out witnessing they have changed amazingly, and now what they get excited about is phoning their sheep, going out witnessing and doing things for others. Thank the Lord for the blessing and the privilege we have of being able to reach out to others!

From Marie; India Area
       It sure is thrilling to see the balance in childcare, especially in going out witnessing more. In our Home we have five teachers for 16 children and we try to send out a team every two days in the afternoon with two children and two adults from YCs on up. We only had a few visitors before, for whom the kids performed. Now the kids are going DTD and they love it! They are also learning how to present the posters, how to pray, and how to converse with others. It's beautiful to see them bubbling over when they come back. They go from 6 to 8 p.m. so it does not cut into their schooling. Thank You Jesus! Thanks for the pubs that encourage us to try something new. I pray we can keep following very closely.

From Lily Newman; India Area
       I'm thrilled and thankful beyond words for this mag. I've been battling for some time now thinking that the "home schooling" methods in our field have not really been home schooling, but more like grouping our kids in their respective age groups and giving them rather conventional school-style teaching at home. This mag brings us back to the real spirit and methods of home schooling, not only to benefit our children's education scholastically but to allow room for them to witness--the greatest education we could ever give our children! This is not to undo the great fruit of the school vision that Dad gave us years ago, but perhaps we went a little too far and missed something somewhere. I feel the need to study this mag seriously and counsel together about how we as a Home can revolutionize our schooling and have a children's witnessing revolution as well.

From Jon C. (of Candle); Pacific
       One of the most inspiring pubs that I have ever read has been the "Educating Our Children" FSM. As a childcare worker I have often felt overwhelmed by the responsibility of trying to fit in all the Word, lessons, activities, etc., that are needed. Even though I knew we had all the tools necessary within easy reach, the dilemma has always been how to put them all together in a workable package in a field Home situation. This FSM has laid out a very clear solution that combines all the areas of our children's education into one workable curriculum.
       I have also seen firsthand what a difference witnessing has made to the inspiration of the OC/MC group, and how they have really come out of themselves and become bold, on-fire witnesses. However, because I haven't been in childcare for so long, I haven't known if we were doing the right thing or if we were maybe overbalancing in favor of the witnessing and should spend more time doing scholastics, etc. (The OC/MC group goes out two full days a week on Saturdays and Sundays.) It was such an encouragement to see more of an emphasis being placed on witnessing with our younger children, as this is really what the Family is all about. This FSM has really been an encouragement and an inspiration, with lots of practical suggestions and ideas that help to create a properly balanced vision for the upbringing and education of our precious children. Thanks so much to the team that took the time to put it together.

From John M., Mary, John B. and Tabitha; Pacific
       This FSM has really given us a lot of faith to take the initiative and look for more opportunities to take as many learning opportunities from our witnessing trips as possible. It's opening our eyes and helping us out of some well-established ruts. According to one of the Statements, we are more concerned with the joy of learning rather than exams, grades, etc. This FSM will probably help us also to remember the joy of teaching as we take advantage of the cities as "three-dimensional free textbooks."

Reaction to the Christian Digest: "The Confident Parent"

From Tommy, Candle, Lily and Jon C.; Pacific
       It was an inspiration to see this man's practical and "down to earth" approach to childcare. It provided the answer to a problem we had in our group concerning some of the children who were seeking attention by being naughty. It gave me a new angle on this, which has been a real blessing. His honesty in the mistakes he made and his view that such mistakes were stepping stones to learning was encouraging.

Reactions to GN #616, "How to Have a Happy Home"

From Jewel (of Josiah); India area
       After reading the Letter "How to Have a Happy Home" I was quite impressed about teaching the children what you know. I never considered reading a talent, but in our lives we read so much, and I realized that I needed to share it.
       Some of the adults, teens and OCs have been having daily individual reading and flashcard time with the preschoolers and some of the YCs that need help apart from their reading class time. In the few weeks since we implemented this we've seen progress, especially with a four-year-old who is behind in his reading. We found that a good time for reading is after lunch for a few minutes, before nap time.
       The children love the personal attention and try harder. Our Home is happier because the children are learning to read more fluently.

From Salomon, Josiah and Claire; Mexico
       "How to Have a Happy Home" has had a big impact on us, with our children in particular. We are realizing that we must become "aggressive" in prayer and take it seriously, as we can't go on "business as usual." I've seen some real changes in some of our children after taking their problems to the Lord and upholding them in prayer.
       The parents are helping with homework during family time. It's really encouraging for us teachers to see the parents getting more involved in the care and education of the children.

Reactions to ML #2953, "Single Moms -- Love Is the Answer!"

From a real father; Pacific
       This Letter taught me a lot! I have ten children, and four of them are not my flesh children, but that never made any difference in my care for each one of them. Grandpa's conviction and belief in One Wife and sharing has strengthened me a lot over the years. Now I am involved in helping another single mommy with her three boys, one of which is mine. I feel so happy and fulfilled that I can be a help to her and her kids! I can see the real need there. I am finding out that it makes quite a difference when the kids have someone who they can call "Daddy." It doesn't matter so much even if you can't spend lots of time with them--if you show love, attention and recognition to them from time to time throughout the day and that you care for them as their daddy, that's what's important.

From a former single mom, N. America
       The reaction I have to share about this Letter is quite a personal one, as I've experienced firsthand what this Letter says about having love for others in a "One Wife" manner, and how seeing the situations the way the Lord sees them can bring great blessings in our lives. About a year-and-a-half ago, I had moved to a different area to work in a large school with my 13- and 15-year-old daughters. I'd been separated for over two and a half years and had no idea how independent I'd become. I thought of myself as a real "blessing" and "asset" to have in the Home, being single and with no younger children--ha! Almost the first day I arrived, I met a single brother who I learned had four younger children, ages 4-10. He and the children had been through some pretty rough experiences, with him having some real tough battles to get his children back in the Family from their flesh mom, who had left with them.
       The Lord spoke to my heart almost immediately when I met the kids, that they really needed a mommy to help them, but I had pretty much decided in my mind that I was going to be a "eunuch for Christ", and would be only "married to Jesus" until He came back! I remember even praying for this brother and his children, but it was, "Lord, please send someone to help this brother!" God help me! What I didn't want to confess to myself was that I was afraid of getting involved with anyone again in a personal way, as I was afraid of getting hurt, or hurting them. Being so "available," I also thought that maybe the Lord was preparing me for something "big," like some special assignment. In my pride and independent mentality, I wasn't aware of what a truly "big" job He did have in mind for me!
       Well, the Lord was faithful to keep "hounding" me about this need, but I just became harder and harder toward the whole situation, even to the point of trying to avoid much contact with the brother, as I was so convicted about my attitude, while at the same time trying to ignore what the Lord was showing me. What finally happened was that both my daughters left for Homes in other areas, and I found out "through the grapevine" that my first mate had gotten mated again and they were expecting a baby!
       (Even my daughters leaving wouldn't have been so traumatic for me, as I also have three older children who have all "left home" and are married in other countries of the world. But I learned that even what is usually only a small trial--like your children leaving--can become something very difficult to handle when we are not in the Lord's will and not in the spiritual place He wants us to be.) When all of these things happened within a matter of a couple of weeks, I found myself feeling very "alone" and wondering what was happening. Why were all of these things so difficult for me to cope with and why did I feel like the Lord was taking me through such an intense breaking and trying time?
       I was on the road with some JETTs when I finally said "uncle" to the Lord and told Him I wanted the truth, even if it killed me. He simply said, "If you do it your way, it's hard; but if you do it My way, it's easy. What seems little in your eyes is actually very big and important in My eyes." I immediately got a vision of this little family and their sweet daddy, and felt so convicted, and promised the Lord to do something about it as soon as I got back home!
       Well, it still wasn't that easy to yield, but I managed to start helping him on Family days, but tried hard to keep it a "business" type relationship, like from Sunday morning to Sunday night only. Around this time I got some invaluable counsel from my shepherdess, who, when I tearfully explained the whole situation to her, including confession of my fears, said, "Well, you never lose by giving!" She even encouraged me to start sharing with him, since we were both singles in the Home. Thank You Jesus, that was a real "killer"--of my pride and how I wanted the whole relationship to be, but I certainly didn't want to get any more of those "spankings" from the Lord, so I took the plunge. The Lord encouraged me by telling me, "I'm not asking you to be a wife, but to be a mommy."
       Soon the daddy moved to another Home for a time, but the children remained in the school. I began having Family time with them each evening and soon found myself falling in love with them all. They each took a little time to warm up to me, but I began to see the Lord's infinite love and wisdom and plan in it all. Just when it seemed that He'd "pulled the rug out from under me," and left me with an "empty nest," He'd brought this wonderful little family to rescue me and I found myself having to apologize and be honest with the daddy about my self-righteous attitude in the beginning, how I'd selfishly thought of myself as being such a blessing to them, when actually my working with them had been my salvation from the Lord, to help me through those difficult times when it seemed my whole world was crumbling down around me. I saw it was they who were the big blessing to me, and how selfish and "un-One Wife" I'd become. I learned so much from them all, and was so thankful for the daddy's unselfish attitude, to share his little family with me and let me be a mommy to them.
       Thank You Jesus, through working together in this parenting teamwork, the daddy and I began to grow closer and closer, and I found, contrary to my previous opinion, that it was really nice to have someone to be close to and it felt good to be friends with someone. I don't know when it "happened," but we seemed to sort of "grow" on each other, and some of the children even began to call me "Mommy," which just about melted my heart! I began to be very thankful for being able to be part of this family, and, well, now we're mated and we've been together for over a year! He's just perfect for me, just what I needed, and we are very happy! I'm so thankful that the Lord saw fit to let me be a mother and wife again, and to have the privilege of being a part of such a sweet little family with such a wonderful man, who really loves the Lord and me!
       So, my advice to any of you who may find yourself in a similar situation is, "Try it, you just might like it!" and "You never lose by giving!"

Reactions to Hope #59, "Getting Back to the Basics: The Word!"

From Jonathan and Sarah; Pacific
       The Hope Mag "Getting Back to the Basics: The Word!" has given us a real Word boost, especially in the area of memorizing. The JETTs have been on the attack with this, and this has inspired the adults to jump on the bandwagon too! The spirit of interaction and fellowship between some adults and JETTs, which was rather shallow before, has improved and is more edifying now. Praise the Lord!

Copyright (c) 1997 by The Family