The Blog

This is the blog.  Where you can find all the latest projects, freshest faces, and most current happenings from Amy Allender and The Art of Living Project.  I would sincerely love to have you follow along.

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A Struggle of Mine…

 

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Hi.  Do you like the new site?  When I asked my mom, just a few minutes ago she said she missed the old site.  She liked the new, but it’d take some getting used to.  That’s okay.  I’m still adjusting as well.  There are probably still a couple bugs.  But I was just so eager to get it all back up and running, I figured I’d unearth them with the site running live.

 

Tonight I’m going to share a little bit of my heart with you.  A struggle that I’ve faced for quite some time.  A struggle that lead to writing in the first place, and now…writing here in this moment.  More will be coming up as I launch our first ever “Art of Living” feature on Thursday.  That’ll be awesome, but for now, you are stuck here.  With me.  Maybe what I’ve been feeling will strike a chord with you.  Or maybe you’ll leave feeling better about yourself, because that girl who writes that thing is such an unimaginable hot mess.  Either way, I’m glad you are here.

 

A good chunk of my post-college years have been spent feeling very lost. Lost because I long to be a person of success, a person who leaves a mark, but I just don’t know how to do it. I’ve felt unsatisfied in jobs and unsatisfied in the way my life was shaping up. I have spent hours crying over my frustration to just figure it out, or become content without.

 

For a long time I felt alone in this struggle, like I was the only person who just couldn’t get it together. But in the past year, I’ve learned that this isn’t something I’m facing all by myself. I think there are a lot of us who feel lost and confused. Confused about what we should be doing, unfulfilled in our work, lost in a shuffle of making ends meet. That feeling of just not knowing what to do with your life, despite education, family life, and experience.  It’s easy to feel alone in this.  Especially when you look around and everyone seems to have it together.  Then you look at your own life.  It feels out of control, or like it’s falling apart, or that it simply hasn’t turned out how you’d pictured it.

 

I’ve come to learn that I’m not alone in this problem. I’m not alone in feeling like life is a slippery art form I just can’t master.

 

But in my soul. In my very core I have a rock-hard, guttural instinct that we are here for a purpose. And even the most confused, broken, mixed up, unfulfilled of us can master living and leave a legacy. All of us.

 

I believe we all want to live a life of purpose. Everyone wants to believe that their life will leave and impact. And it can.

 

I started mulling this thought over and over. There are people out there who are living and living well. In reality, I think very few people feel like they have it ALL together. But there are definitely people who have mastered pieces of life. I see them. They are all around me. People young and old and middle aged, working on a life’s calling. Loving what they do. Making a difference. Being unique. Collecting experiences that will make lovely bedtime stories for their grand children.

 

For months I’ve taken note of these people. I’ve admired them from afar. I’ve spent hours over cups of coffee and chai tea wondering what they know that I don’t…and wishing I had the guts to talk to them and ask them to teach me. Then one day, I decided I was sick of wondering. I decided to ask, knowing that the worst they could tell me is “No, I don’t want to share my secrets with you.” And the best that could happen is that I’d take my first step on the road to mastering the art of living.

 

The art of living is about learning from others, taking steps toward becoming the person you dream of being and living your life to its fullest, greatest potential.

 

And that’s what the Art of Living Project is all about.  I genuinely appreciate each and every one of you who has read, stopped by, pinned a post, laughed along and welled up in tears at something you’ve seen on the blog.  My thoughts have been a bit scattered, my writing theme has been pretty random.  But at the root of all of it is my search for success, a quest to master the art of living, to do more, and life more wholly for the Lord.  I hope you’ll continue to read and share.  I hope the new {improved} clarity in direction of my writing will inspire you, us, in ways we never expected.

 

See you tomorrow.

Amy

The Art of Living Project {coming soon}

Thank you to every one who sent prayers and sympathy and well wishes after hearing about my back indecent.  I’ve been off the blog for a few days {as you know.}  There are two big reasons for this…First of all there have been some time consuming things getting in my way {work being one, a three hour visit to the clinic being another.}  Second, up until yesterday I’ve been pretty darn looped up on some high quality pain killers.

 

I am feeling better.  There is still pain and hopefully the doctor will be able to tell me what that’s all about in the near future.  Most importantly I’d like to know how I can avoid another Urkel situation in the coming months.  And I’ll admit, I’m a terrible patient.  The first few days after I’d been to the ER I had a terrible attitude and resigned myself to a life of no working out and only ice cream sundaes on the couch.  That didn’t last too long though.  I can’t stand the thought of never being able to HIIT it again.

 

So, anyway…that’s the update.

 

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But in other news I have something pretty big to tell you.  Starting tomorrow {or Sunday…it just kind of depends} this site and blog will be shutting down for a remodel!  You know how much I love make overs and before and afters.  I’d like to be able to seamlessly reconstruct and relaunch a better, more organizer, prettier site without having to close down for a single day.  BUT–I’m not that tech savvy.  So, in the coming days you’ll see a big fat “Under Construction” sign if you try to come over for a chat.

 

Why, the remodel, you ask?  Well, a few reasons.  Firstly, I think I can do better.  Secondly, I think things have gotten kind of muddled.  I hope to return with a site that is more focused.  A site that presents a clearer picture of what it is that I “do” and a clearer image of how you can be inspired.  Third, I’ve spent many, many months with a new idea growing in my heart.  In my experience when this happens, you should follow it.  After prayer and seeking Godly guidance, I think the slightly new direction I’m heading in is the right thing to do.

 

I just got an Instagram account today.  I have no idea how to use it.  My plan was to keep you up to date on progress and happenings that way.  We’ll see…If you want to be friends, or whatever Instagram calls it, you can find me at #theartoflivingproject.

 

Which brings me to another point.  AmyAllender.com will be coming back better and stronger as…The Art of Living Project.  That gives you an idea of what the new and improved site will entail.  I’m sad to leave you, but excited to bring you something better.  The Art of Living Project will examine people who are living well, living inspiring lives.  It will still include the things you already know and love about my current blog:  B&A’s {that’s the art of improvement}, house projects {the art of home}, food {the art of the kitchen}, and photography {the art of the moment.}

 

At the heart of it all, I want to write things that inspire people to see the potential in their lives.  So much of my 20′s has been spent feeling like a hot mess.  I don’t know what to do, I feel like I’m doing things wrong, I want to believe my life can have an impact…but I just don’t know how.  Then I look around, and see people living really incredible {even if seemingly ordinary} lives.  Interesting lives.  Lives spent doing things that they love, working to the glory of God.  Using skills in quirky ways to be an example of Christ’s love.  That’s what I want to do.  That’s the stuff I want to capture.

 

If you feel at all like me {80% hot mess, 10% confused and 10% faking that you have it together} I pray that you’ll wait.  Give me a couple weeks.  Then come back and join a new community of inspiring people, true tales and a project dedicated to mastering the Art of Living.

 

Amy

 

PS–Even if I can’t figure the Instagram thing out I’ll still be updating the Facebook page daily.  So check in over on that side of things!

I’ve Fallen And I Can’t Get Up

I've Fallen And I Can't Get Up

Most of the time the things I write here have some kind of meaning.  Whether it’s a lesson learned, project completed or a sneak peek so a client can share a glimpse of their session with family and friends…usually there’s a point to the story.  Today, there is no point.  I’m just going to tell you a story because, well–it’s awkward and funny and a little note worthy.

 

As a kid of the 90′s you can bet I’m an Urkel fan.  On Friday, however, I got a little too close to his catch phrase– “I’ve fallen and I can’t get up”–for comfort.

 

I guess the story really starts in October when I threw my back out the first time.  I finally finished physical therapy in December and had been feeling fine since then.  The therapist said her best guess as to why my back clenched up suddenly started limiting my mobility in the fall, was most likely due to a combination of over training and wearing the wrong shoes.  This unkindly duo caused me to over use my lower back muscles instead of my core, glutes and hamstrings…leading to a nasty strain.

 

But I got over it.

 

Until Friday.

 

On Friday I was leading a total body workout on the stability ball.  It’s low impact and fun, even for gym beginners.  Half way through, something twisted and–BAM–no more leaning forward or backward.  After class I struggled to get home, where I parked myself in bed on my back.  As the afternoon went on, my mobility only became more and more limited.  So limited I didn’t even leave the bed for lunch.

 

When Derek got home, he found me still in bed.  He convinced me that I should try to walk.  At least to go to the bathroom, then come down for dinner.  That all sounded sane enough, so I obliged.  When I stood up, pain like daggers shot through my lower back and made me weak in the knees.  Leaning on the bed, then the walls for support I gradually made it to the hall.  Lifting my feet even high enough to shuffle across the floor was a strain.  I felt like I was trapped in an 85 year old body.  Once in the hall, I had to call Derek back upstairs, because I just couldn’t go another step.   He helped me into the bathroom.  The pain was leaving me in that weird place where it just hurts so bad you want to laugh.  But the laughing and tightening of my abs only made it worse.  As usual, my awkward antics only made the process worse.  We decided I should take a break from walking and just have a sit on the toilet seat to recover before even trying to actually pee.

 

As I leaned forward and bent my knees to sit my back decided that was the final straw.  I doubled over and fell to my hands and knees right on the bath mat.  That’s when the waves of spasms started.  I rolled over to my back with my head resting against the trash can and my cheek against the vanity.  That was it.  I couldn’t scoot.  I couldn’t sit back up.  That was it.  Waves of awful spasms took over my back, causing it to arch in a weird way beyond my control.  When that happened I couldn’t even breathe.  I was consciously trying to stay calm, breath deep and relax.  But I couldn’t.  It was a horrible feeling.  A really weird feeling.

 

By now, we’d obviously decided I should go to the ER.  That however, required a journey down a flight of stairs, through the house, down the deck steps, and down three more steps to the driveway.  After giving it our best college try, Derek made the executive decision to call an ambulance.

 

I really do think it was our only option.  But boy was I embarrassed.  I’m sure that at that moment there were people having actual emergencies.  I’m a 27 year old in peak physical condition that couldn’t get up off the bathroom floor.  The first thing the EMT said when he came upstairs was…”Wow, literally on the bathroom floor.  How exactly did you end up in that position?”

 

Awkward, I’m telling you.

 

They asked some basic questions then tested my glucose levels.  At which point they asked if I was diabetic because my blood sugar was so low.  No–no diabetes for me.  Just back pain that made going downstairs for food a totally undesirable option.

 

Even once they’d pumped my IV full of drugs that finally let my back unclench and caused me to giggle uncontrollably I couldn’t move.  The muscles were still so tight it took two grown men to sit me upright.  Then they strapped me into a chair lift so they could get me downstairs and out to the ambulance.  All the while I was thinking how frustrating this all is, since I learned to walk before I was 12 months old…now I couldn’t even get in a chair by myself and strangers were carrying me out of my house like the Arc of the Covenant.  Ugh.

 

Then they loaded me in the ambulance and away we went.  On the five block journey to the ER I was fed a tube of instant glucose to raise my sugar levels.  The EMT said most people think they’re gross, but I think it tasted like candy and I was starving…so I was ready to eat anything.  It was my first ride in the back of an ambulance, and let me tell you…it’s a lot smaller than it looks on TV.

 

Family Matters

 

So that’s the story.  And it ends like this:  The doctor looked me over and decided all the weird spasms were muscularly triggered.  No slipped or ruptured discs.  I’ll be going back to physical therapy, no doubt.  Saturday morning walking was a real chore, today I’m feeling much better.  I’m still on a steady stream of pain killers and muscle relaxers.  Hopefully in a couple weeks I’ll be back to the gym.  But no curling tonight.  {Which is a real bummer because it’s the final game of the regular season.  So, BOO!}

 

The end.

 

 

 

Send Some Love {30 Creative Care Package Ideas}

care package round up

This week a squadron of B-52ers shipped off from the base here in PraCan for a six month deployment.  A friend, whose husband is off on this deployment asked if I had any care package ideas from when Derek was away.  But I’m actually an awful wife.  I only sent Derek a couple things:  a batch of cookies that arrived stale and broken.  And a T-Shirt.  Lame.  So lame.

So I scoured the Internet and found a bundle of folks who are doing the care package thing right.  I think we all know someone who could use a care package, whether your spouse is deployed or not.  Hopefully this creative list will inspire you next time you need to ship some love via post. read more…

Giving Up {making lenten promises}

{image via OpenBible.org…with the biggest text indicating the most popular lenten fasts.}

I’m not Catholic and I didn’t grow up Catholic.  It wasn’t until I was in high school that I realized what Mardi Gras actually celebrated:  One last day of fun and frolic before lent begins.

 

I always liked celebrating lent.  I was shocked when I realized all churches didn’t have an Ash Wednesday service.  I remember talking to Derek one year, early in our relationship about lent.  I asked him if he was planning to give anything up.  “No.  We don’t really do that.”

 

Again.  Shocked.

 

So here I am.  A little older, maybe wiser.  At least less naive about lenten practices.  But I still like lent.  I’m not saying I always make some elaborate “Lenten Promise,” or give up meat on Fridays…and in no way am I saying that fasting something over lent makes you in any way superior.  I just like having a season that causes us to reflect on Christ’s fast/temptation.  I like a season that disciplines some of our own “worldly” tendencies and quiets our hearts in preparation to celebrate the gift of salvation.  I’m old school…so sue me.

 

I was about an inch away from not giving anything up this year.  Then Tuesday night, literally at the eleventh hour, I decided to begin a fast from something that has been eroding my time, productivity, and spirituality:  TV during the day.

 

My third grad teacher, Mrs. Carlson, could tell you that I’m the type of person who holds her pencils too tight.  She was always on me, telling me to loosen my grip or else I’d get cramped hands.  Pretty much, that’s an analogy for me in many areas of my life.  I’m a tight holder.  To lots of things.  God, however, wants us to be open handed on the earth.  He tells us to be “in the world, not of the world.”  He asks us to have a loose grip on the world so we can have a tight grip on Him.

 

Yeah.  I struggle with that.  I have to make loads of tiny, conscience decisions to be open handed with the gifts He’s given me, and to let go of worldly things that distract me from Him.

 

And one of the biggest distractions is TV during the day.

 

I love TV.  Love it.  So much, I let NetFlix play nearly constantly through the day.  When a series ends, I find a new one.  I don’t necessarily watch closely.  But I like the noise.  And I’d rather hear a story line than music in the background.  In my heart of hearts I’ve wanted to give up turning the tube on during my “working” hours.  Then I’d make some kind of loop hole excuse as to why I didn’t really need to.

 

I’ll only have it on during my morning coffee.

 

Only if I’m doing the “mindless” parts of projects.

 

Only during lunch.

 

Soon, my web of excuses was more porous than a sheet of cheese cloth.

 

I thought about lent.  A perfect time to make a fasting commitment and stick to it.  Then I would think how much I liked TV and how if I didn’t give anything up, I wouldn’t be out anything…because no one expects me to give something up anyway.  Right?  But a realization sunk in.  Isn’t anything we place a higher priority than our relationship with the Lord an idol?

 

Yep.

 

It makes me feel a little sick to my stomach that I’d avoid giving something as trivial as TV up in order to spend that time in communion with Christ.  Really.  I’d rather be watching reruns of The Office than cultivating a deeper relationship with the Creator of the whole universe?  Scary.

 

TV isn’t evil in itself.  There is something wrong when it {or anything} becomes more important/enjoyable/pertinent to our day than focusing on Christ.  There is something wrong when a worldly commodity places our eyes for the Kingdom and the glory of God in a shadow.

 

Yikes.  TV came up on me quietly, stealthily.  Slowly it tempted me away from coffee and Bible…to coffee and NetFlix.  It took me away from quiet projects prayerfully completed…to projects finished to a soundtrack of reruns.  Gross.

 

So it’s lent and I gave it up.  My heart needs to be quieted.  My heart needed to face its convictions.  Even though my hands hurt as I loosen their grip on my TV addiction, {and I sound super lame talking about my “first world” problems of too much television…} I consciously want to make the choice to put God back in His rightful place:  As king over everything in my world.

 

Even if you aren’t fasting from something this season, I hope you’ll consciously take the time and effort to examine your relationship with Christ.  Take inventory of your heart, clear out the gunk blocking a stellar, intimate, crazy-love relationship with God.  You’ll be refreshed and totally ready to celebrate another Easter with the King.

 

Amy

One Wise Women {A Promo Sneak Peek}

One Wise Woman

Take a sneak peek at one of my latest projects.  Cute, right?

It’s a short promo video for an upcoming women’s retreat that my church {First Baptist Minot} is hosting in April.  The theme that the committee is working with is “One Wise Woman.”  An over arching idea for the weekend is the wisdom in learning from women of the past.  A short brain storming session later and we had a basic story board for a promotional video that would highlight wisdom from “women of the past.”

I’ve got to lend props to a few of my personal Facebook friends for replying to a call out for mom-isms.  My personal favorite was, “Good medicine doesn’t always taste good.”  We used those lines, along with others I found on the P&G “Mom Always Said…” Pintrest board.  The idea is that we filmed a montage of wise, witty, womanly sayings.

And lucky for me…FBC is stocked with plenty of adorable 20-somethings that were willing to take part.  {I’d say three of the four are pretty keen looking.  That one in the lower left is kind of goofy…}  I’m excited to show you all the finished product.  But you’ll just have to wait.

In the mean time, tell me…What’s the best advice you ever got from an older, wiser woman?

PS–If you are in the PraCan area, you should totally come to the retreat.  Details here.  The guest speaker is Lysa Terkeurst, president of Proverbs 31 Ministries!

Mistaken Identity

Wrong Car

Today I was shopping downtown at one of my favorite book stores.  When I came out I went to my car and tried to open the door.  Maybe I shouldn’t tell you this, but I will anyway…I don’t usually lock my car doors.  Especially not when I’m in downtown PraCan.  My car isn’t that nice, and there sure as heck isn’t anything inside worth taking.

So, you can imagine that I was a bit confused to find the door locked.

That’s when it hit me.  I looked inside the window.  A travel mug.  A stellar interior.  This.  Is.  Not.  My.  Car.

Awkward.

Then there was that moment when I looked over my shoulder, sure the true owner had seen me and would be asking questions.  Luckily there was no one around.  So I looked across the street to find my own Chevy Equinox, got inside…and snapped a photo of the mistaken identity to show you later.

It got me thinking about mistaken identity.  From the outside lots of things can look the same.  A silver Equinox parked on the side of the street can be mistaken for another.  I can think that car is my car.  {And I did.}  It’s only when you look through the window to see the interior that you recognize you’ve made a mistake.  It could happen with any number of things.  For instance, a ripe watermelon looks pretty much the same as one that’s gone bad.  When you chop into it, you’ll find juicy, solid fruit…or a pile of weird, watery mush.

People can be like this too.  From the outside you draw conclusions.  But the Bible teaches us that God cares most about what is inside.  He teaches us to beware of outward appearances and instead examine the heart.  To look through the window to examine the interior, before we commit to getting inside the wrong vehicle. {Matthew 15:1-20; Proverbs 21:2; Jeremiah 17:10; Luke 16:15 the list goes on and on…}

From the outside two people can both look caring, compassionate, and Christ-loving.  Their insides, however can be very, very different.  One can be of pure intentions, while the other can be motivated by vanity, selfishness, or the desire to seem holy.  {Gee…sounds like some Pharisees I heard about once.}

Recently I taught a lesson on purity inside our social media.  I pulled Facebook statuses from lots of my friends and had our youth group teens draw conclusions about them.  The kicker was that I pulled two from the same person.  One that advocated going to the bars for cheap drinks and a night of wasted fun.  One that contained a call to prayer.  That’s weird.  That’s hypocrisy.  That’s how mistaken identity can occur.

What identity are you portraying?  Is it a pure image of who you really are?  Are your intentions pure?  Or are you trying to trap the outside world into mistaking your identity?

Take time to pray that God would guide your assessment of others.  That He would teach you to be an examiner of hearts, now outward appearances.  Pray that He would purify your intentions as well…so everyone can see just how wonderful you are.

Amy

Honor Your Parents {Grownup Edition}

Sometimes, when I don’t know how to start, I just begin with something obvious.  It’s a good jumping off point.  Today I’ll start with this thought.

 

We all have parents.

parents

Whether they excelled at being a mom and dad, I can’t tell you.  But it doesn’t change the fact that we all come from somewhere.  A question I’ve been examining lately is what it means to honor your parents once you are all grown up {and maybe even a parent yourself.}

DSCN1345

As many of you know, the idea of honoring your mom and dad comes from the Bible.  We see it in the 10 Commandments.  This notion ranks in the top ten of rules most important to God.  And not only is it in the top ten, it makes the top five.  Not only the top five, but it’s the first of the commandments to be accompanied by a promise if it’s kept.  Exodus 20:12 says:

 

Honor your father and your mother, so that you may live long in the land the Lord your God is giving you.

So that you may live long…this commandment comes with a promise of longevity.  A bit later, it comes with a promise of death if it’s broken.  The very next chapter in Exodus {21:17} tells us:

 Anyone who curses their father and mother is to be put to death.

Obviously, God cherishes parents.  I won’t stay long on the topic of why longevity, but I think it’s worth touching.  If children are raised according to God’s household plan, they grow up respecting their parents {honoring them, obeying them}.  This leads to young adults who understand the beauty and importance of submission, not only to their parents, but to authority and ultimately, to God.  People who practice self discipline and respect those in authority generally live safer, healthier, un-jailed, longer, lives.  I’m not saying there aren’t any unusual circumstances.  We live in a broken world, a world where the household isn’t always carried out how God intended, in a world where authority isn’t always 100% sound.  But this was the plan.  And children who grow up learning the value of self control, tend to grow up to avoid silly, physical risks.

 

It’s easy to look at the command and think you’ve done your part because you are all grown up now and when you were a child you {kind of} always did what they asked of you.  But it’s not that easy.  This isn’t only a commandment to children.  There is no age limit on honoring your parents.  So how do we carry this out when we live states away, own our own home, or are just off at college?

 

Luckily, the Bible gives a clear picture of what adult parent-honoring looks like.

 

First of all, the Hebrew translation of the word “honor” from Exodus 20 has a few layers of meaning.  One is to obey/respect.  Another is to “make honorable.”  This means when we speak of our parents as adults it should put them in a good light.  Even thought it’s very easy to vent frustration out to siblings or friends, we are to speak favorably of them.  Further, we should put them in good light in front of others.  Let’s look to Joseph for an example of this.

 

You can read the whole story here.  For our purposes, let’s skip ahead.  Joe was sold into Egypt and had since been promoted to Pharaoh’s go-to-guy.  When he and his father were reunited he:

 

…brought his father Jacob in and presented him before Pharaoh. -Genesis 47:7

He took his dad to the ruler of the world’s mega power and presented him as a man the Pharaoh should know and respect.

 

Secondly, as adults we should continue to show our parents respect by addressing them respectfully and doing what they ask of us, even though we don’t “have to” any more.  For this one let’s look at Jesus, right before he turns water to wine.  See the whole story here.

 

Okay.  Here is my major paraphrase.  Really you should read the Biblical version.  But this is the general idea.  Jesus and His disciples are at a wedding and the wine runs out.  Jesus’ mom is there and asks Him to perform a miracle to make more.  John 2:4-5 says:

‘Dear woman, why do you involve me?’ Jesus replied.  ‘My time has not yet come.’

His mother said to the servants, ‘Do whatever he tells you.’

A couple things here.

  1. 1.  “Dear woman” is a term of respect.  He’s not looking down on her or belittling her, instead He is demonstrating respect for His mom.
  2. He does it!  He doesn’t need to.  As He makes very clear:  He takes His orders from His Father in heaven.  But Mary is confident that He can make the miracle happen.  And He does.

 

The last big Biblical example of honoring your mom and dad as an adult comes, again from Jesus.  {But it’s found all over Scripture.}

Honoring your parents

The third way I see Scripture showing us how to honor our father and mother in adulthood is by caring for their needs.  Look at Mark 7.  Here we have the Pharisees giving Jesus and His disciples grief because they ate without going through the ceremonious rigamarole that was the standard for “hand washing.”  It was an ordeal that had little to do with cleanliness and everything to do with vanity and outward appearances.  In Mark 7:8-13 Jesus turns to them and says:

 And he continued, “You have a fine way of setting aside the commands of God in order to observe your own traditions! For Moses said, ‘Honor your father and mother,’ and, ‘Anyone who curses their father or mother is to be put to death.’ 

But you say that if anyone declares that what might have been used to help their father or mother is Corban (that is, devoted to God)— then you no longer let them do anything for their father or mother. Thus you nullify the word of God by your tradition that you have handed down. And you do many things like that.

Do you know what Corban means?  I didn’t either, until I started really studying this.  It’s a buzzword for another one of the Pharisees’ traditions.  Corban was an “out.”  Let’s say you had elderly, poverty-stricken parents.  They are sick and cannot live on their own.  They don’t have money or the ability to care for themselves.  In Jesus’ day, you could just say, “Corban!”  That would end the discussion.  It implies that all you have you are giving to the temple.  Any help you could have given them, you plan to give away.

 

Now, whether people actually did give it to the temple was up for debate.  Mostly it seems they liked to throw around the word corban to make themselves seem high and mighty.  Like perfect givers.  They didn’t want to help their parents.  They wanted to be able to give big showy gifts to the temple…so they’d look good in front of their peers.  It was done in vanity, and we were created by a God who examines the heart.  The Bible shows us that faithful tithing is a healthy habit.  But we are commanded to honor our parents.  That trumps any tradition or vain practice.

 

He could have used a different instance to demonstrate the Pharisees use of tradition to buck God’s law, but He chose this one.  Which makes me think, taking care of parents physically and lovingly is near and dear to our Lord’s heart.

 

Okay, one more look at this.  Then I’m done.  Promise.  John 19:26 records an intimate moment shortly before Jesus was crucified.  He knows He will be leaving the Earth, He knows He doesn’t have much time.  So one of Jesus’ final acts is to make sure He is not calling “Corban.”  He ensures that His mother is cared for.

 

When Jesus saw His mother there, and the disciple whom He loved standing nearby, He said to His mother, “Dear woman, here is your son,” and to the disciple, “Here is your mother.”  From that time on the disciple took her into his home.

 

I’d love to hear your thoughts.  Would you add any more references?  How do you find honoring your parents is different as an adult than a child?  Is it harder or easier?

 

Amy

 

Well, hello there!

Hi. I'm Amy. Thanks for coming by. I'm in to trying new things and learning to live better. I hope you'll hang around...together we can come closer to mastering the Art of Living.

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