March 25, Sunday

Today’s AMI Devotional Quiet Time is provided by Pastor Ryun.

 

Devotional Thoughts for Today

“How much money does it take to have a good time?” 

Proverbs 15:17

Better a meal of vegetables where there is love than a fattened calf with hatred.

Are you a young parent? Let me share a tip on how to have a great family time—without spending hardly anything. Not interested? Oh, money is not the issue? Okay, I get it, but don’t you know by now that money cannot buy happiness, and costly family vacations do not guarantee pleasant memories? Well, let me share a lesson I learned as a young father 18 years ago, when my kids were nine, six, and three years old—at the time were living in Southern California.

Is it possible to feed a family of five with sumptuous Chinese food, and eating it together while enjoying a great view? We found this Chinese Wok restaurant close to Christy’s (our daughter) school that offered one main dish platter + noodle or rice for a special price of $.99! So after picking up Christy from school, we bought four plates and headed to our favorite hangout place—the Claremont villages, right next to the Claremont schools where old gift shops and restaurants are found.

And after countless times of hanging out in that area, we managed to find this great place to eat.  We were facing the sidewalk of several shops but sort of hidden in this one corner was a built-in cement table with benches on the sides. Water fountain was on one side, as well as a place to dispose trash and a restroom close by. (It came in handy.) We brought our own drinks as well as chips and nacho dips. (Christy even brought packages of wet towels.) We had a great time of eating outdoors, watching people go by, looking at the Christmas decorations, while enjoying the cool California air in December—and all for around $5.00. And I did spend part of that to buy my wife a Starbucks coffee, which was located about 40-50 feet from the table (that made her happy). My kids enjoyed the day and so did I—partly because this all cost me less than $5.00.

I still remember this day—it was a spontaneous family time that still stands in my recollection. No, our family times throughout the years did not always end so happily, but that day it sure did. It was truly a day when I understood what this meant: “Better a meal of vegetables where there is love than a fattened calf with hatred.”

Ultimately, it is because of the Lord that there is love in our family. That hasn’t kept us from bickering and fighting at times, but because of the great love that we all have encountered in Christ, “a time of war” was followed by “a time for peace.” So, before taking another time consuming and going on a costly vacation, work on love—beginning with your own family members. When you get really good at it (loving), maybe you will enjoy your family more while spending less!

Prayer: Dear God, help me to be the father/mother who truly loves my children with affection, prayer, and teaching of God’s Word, instead of trying to buy their love by getting them the latest gadgets. Help me to have discernment so that I will not spoil my kids to their detriment. Lord, I need wisdom, discipline, and courage to be the parent that my kid(s) needs. Amen.

Bible Reading for Today: Judges 20

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