The Best Children’s Bibles!

IMG_1881

So let me just start off by saying (just in case someone doesn’t know) that I am a Mama bear♥ Yes, I have FIVE kids and if the Lord is willing I would love to have many more. I know that true motherhood isn’t really valued in these last and evil days, but it is truly an honor and a blessing to be called to raise up babies in the fear and admonition of the Lord. But anyways (because that’s another post for another day), I just wanted to share what bibles I use to teach my children in addition to teaching them by being, of course.

So we use the New Living Translation (NLT) whenever we do group bible studies. And we use these New International Reader’s Version (NIrV) Adventure Bibles that I just bought for everyday reading. Now we have to be VERY careful with some translations (or paraphrases!) of the bible because many are watered down in order to be palatable for the world. But I have been reading this version lately in my own quiet time and I’m telling you that it’s legit. Its even helped inspire a few of my latest posts!

IMG_1893

Here’s a look inside!

Also, if you have babies and/or toddlers don’t worry, I do too. I found a “Beginner’s bible” that sticks to the scriptures. And this is something that the kids can read to each other (or you can do like I do and just read it to them in place of silly bedtime stories!).

IMG_1885IMG_1890

So I hope that you check these versions out. Let me know if you are curious about what versions I like to read and study with myself.

Much love,

Brandi Collins

♥♥

P.s I purchased these bibles from Hobby Lobby (and from Amazon) for around $10 each!

The Danger in Judging others

 “Do not judge and criticize and condemn [others unfairly with an attitude of self-righteous superiority as though assuming the office of a judge], so that you will not be judged [unfairly]. For just as you[hypocritically] judge others [when you are sinful and unrepentant], so will you be judged; and in accordance with your standard of measure[used to pass out judgment], judgment will be measured to you. Why do you look at the [insignificant] speck that is in your brother’s eye, but do not notice and acknowledge the [egregious] log that is in your own eye? Or how can you say to your brother, ‘Let me get the speck out of your eye,’ when there is a log in your own eye? You hypocrite (play-actor, pretender), first get the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your brother’s eye. Do not give that which is holy to dogs, and do not throw your pearls before pigs, for they will trample them under their feet, and turn and tear you to pieces.” (Matthew 7:1-6, AMP)

Now let me just start off by saying that there is a difference between judging and discerning. Judging is forming an unjust opinion, or verdict concerning someone and their business (life). Judging is NOT identifying (or recognizing) who or what someone truly is or isn’t. That is discernment. And according to the bible, we have to “judge” (in that sense) people by their fruit lest we be deceived too. There are MANY false prophets and teachers and converts and Jesus’.. So we better start measuring people (including ourselves!) up to the scriptures. And if you are genuinely doing this, then you know that it’s not fun coming to a sober conclusion that someone you love (or admire) is not of God. It’s heartbreaking. Especially when they are offended by your concerns and/or reject your rebuke.

We are living in those (end!) times when people are no longer able to endure sound doctrine. These people, who don’t want to be “judged” are obviously living (and loving!) lies.

Preach the word of God. Be prepared, whether the time is favorable or not. Patiently correct, rebuke, and encourage your people with good teaching. For a time is coming when people will no longer listen to sound and wholesome teaching. They will follow their own desires and will look for teachers who will tell them whatever their itching ears want to hear. They will reject the truth and chase after myths.” (2 Timothy 4:2-4, NLT)

So don’t apologize for standing on the Word of God. Judging just has such a bad wrap because most people (and I’m guilty of this myself!) are going around slandering and condemning folks for sins that they themselves are still committing. And this is SO dangerous because God is no respecter of persons. Just as disgusted (or as irritated) as you are about someone else’s sin (that you’re also dealing with), God is the One who is truly offended (by BOTH of you who haven’t come to repentance!). And we who are judging hypocritically, are even worst without excuse because our attitudes toward the person (and their sin) testifies against us. It not only proves that we know what we’re both doing wrong, but it proves that we are in an even worst state than they are. Because if we actually believe that we are better off than them to condemn, then we are self righteous and blinded by our own sin. And this is exactly what Jesus was talking about in Matthew chapter 7. It’s not that we can’t acknowledge or rebuke other people’s sin (because we’re encouraged too). It’s just that we have to make sure that we’re spiritually mature and are walking upright ourselves. The whole point is to help each other out before we get judged FOR REAL by God. So, I hope that this clarifies some things. Let me know if you have any questions 🙂

Much love,

Brandi Collins

♥♥ Here’s some more scriptures to consider:

(Romans 2:1-21, NLT) You may think you can condemn such people, but you are just as bad, and you have no excuse! When you say they are wicked and should be punished, you are condemning yourself, for you who judge others do these very same things. And we know that God, in his justice, will punish anyone who does such things. Since you judge others for doing these things, why do you think you can avoid God’s judgment when you do the same things? Don’t you see how wonderfully kind, tolerant, and patient God is with you? Does this mean nothing to you? Can’t you see that his kindness is intended to turn you from your sin? But because you are stubborn and refuse to turn from your sin, you are storing up terrible punishment for yourself. For a day of anger is coming, when God’s righteous judgment will be revealed. He will judge everyone according to what they have done. He will give eternal life to those who keep on doing good, seeking after the glory and honor and immortality that God offers. But he will pour out his anger and wrath on those who live for themselves, who refuse to obey the truth and instead live lives of wickedness. There will be trouble and calamity for everyone who keeps on doing what is evil—for the Jew first and also for the Gentile. But there will be glory and honor and peace from God for all who do good—for the Jew first and also for the Gentile. For God does not show favoritism. When the Gentiles sin, they will be destroyed, even though they never had God’s written law. And the Jews, who do have God’s law, will be judged by that law when they fail to obey it. For merely listening to the law doesn’t make us right with God. It is obeying the law that makes us right in his sight. Even Gentiles, who do not have God’s written law, show that they know his law when they instinctively obey it, even without having heard it. They demonstrate that God’s law is written in their hearts, for their own conscience and thoughts either accuse them or tell them they are doing right. And this is the message I proclaim—that the day is coming when God, through Christ Jesus, will judge everyone’s secret life. You who call yourselves Jews are relying on God’s law, and you boast about your special relationship with him. You know what he wants; you know what is right because you have been taught his law. You are convinced that you are a guide for the blind and a light for people who are lost in darkness. You think you can instruct the ignorant and teach children the ways of God. For you are certain that God’s law gives you complete knowledge and truth. Well then, if you teach others, why don’t you teach yourself? You tell others not to steal, but do you steal? You say it is wrong to commit adultery, but do you commit adultery? You condemn idolatry, but do you use items stolen from pagan temples? You are so proud of knowing the law, but you dishonor God by breaking it. No wonder the Scriptures say, ‘The Gentiles blaspheme the name of God because of you.’ “

(Galatians 6:1, NLT) “Dear brothers and sisters, if another believer is overcome by some sin, you who are godly should gently and humbly help that person back onto the right path. And be careful not to fall into the same temptation yourself.”

Do you really believe what the Bible teaches?

In addition to the previous post, I just want to encourage us all to examine ourselves. As I mentioned, many claim to believe the Bible to be true but are contradicting their professions with their own interpretations and lifestyles.

You see, we have deceived ourselves when we begin to pick and choose what commands (and directives) to obey. The bible can not just be true to us to an extent (until it becomes inconvenient). We have to accept it to be true (and right!) in its entirety.

I remember my mother bringing a couple young ladies over my house for what I thought would be a little Bible studying. Then she told them to just go through the scriptures and pick out what they like. After I explained how we have to read the scriptures in context, she told them that they don’t have to be (and I quote) “A radical Jesus person”. Um.. First of all, low blow. And second off all,  YES WE DO! That’s the main requirement of being a  FOLLOWER OF JESUS. We have to lay down our lives in order to follow Christ. And as “believers” and Bible readers shouldn’t we know this!? Unfortunately, many like my mother think that you are judging them when you propose things like truth, obedience and holiness. They will say that they aren’t any less of a Christian just because they don’t believe or live like you do. But friends, don’t be deceived (and if this is you, don’t deceive yourself). True believers of Jesus Christ don’t pursue their own standards of righteousness. In fact, you who oppose are really the ones being self righteous by living by your own standards of what’s right (or good enough!) regardless of what the Bible teaches. The scriptures are for training in RIGHTEOUSNESS. They are not self serving affirmations or demonic laws of attraction prompts!

“All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousnessThat the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works.” (1 Timothy 3:16-17)

Personally, I just simply read the Bible as a guide.  I obey the Lord’s commands as I surrender my life and MY OWN desires. I seek to continuously be sanctified knowing that righteousness in Christ isn’t optional or unattainable. So,  if you claim to believe in the God of the Bible (the same God of Abraham, Issac and Jacob), then again,  I challenge you to really examine what you say that you believe because the Bible teaches holiness not lawlessness or once saved always saved.

With nothing but love, Brandi

A very important message from me to all of you! (Please watch)

The message (or gospel!) of Jesus Christ was never meant to be complicated. In destroying the works of the devil and overcoming the world, Jesus died so that in him we would have the power (and the privilege!) to repent and overcome as he did. The kingdom, or judgement and reign of the one, true and living God and His Son Jesus Christ is coming! So if we love them and want to be apart of the kingdom (of righteousness, peace and joy) we have to live right— according to THEIR standards. So, I hope that you choose life. God bless you and feel free to contact me through the blog or via email:coachbrandibond@gmail.com

How to come separate from this world

“Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world. And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof: but he that doeth the will of God abideth for ever.” (1 John 2:15-17)

 I want to take some time to talk about coming separate from this world because recently I had to come to terms with the fact that I was lukewarm. And a lot of us are lukewarm— claiming to be Christians when our lifestyles are no different from those who blatantly reject God. But before I get into coming separate from this world, I want briefly explain what I am referring to as “The world”.

When I mention the world, I am talking about the society’s system of resources, values, priorities and philosophies that are influenced by the devil. Since satan is the god of this world (according to scriptures like Matthew 4:8-10), he is the one orchestrating the ideas and moves of the people. Whether they know (or believe) it or not, those who aren’t in Christ (and Christians who aren’t abiding in the Spirit!) are being deceived (and employed!) by the devil.

We know that God’s children do not make a practice of sinning, for God’s Son holds them securely, and the evil one cannot touch them. We know that we are children of God and that the world around us is under the control of the evil one. (1 John 5:18-19, NLT)

Therefore, being a friend or in agreement with the ways of living AND THINKING like the world (or the cultures around us) puts us in direct opposition to God and His standards (which are clear in the bible).

Ye adulterers and adulteresses, know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God. (James 4:4)

So what am I saying? Am I saying that we have to live like the Amish? No, because Jesus sends his disciples out into the world (John 17:6-26, Matthew 28:16-20). What I’m saying is, is that we have to repent, and stop living like we don’t know what the bible teaches!

Like I mentioned above, this is how a lot of us have deceived ourselves into believing that we are Christians when in reality we are enemies of God.

 But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves. For if any be a hearer of the word, and not a doer, he is like unto a man beholding his natural face in a glass: For he beholdeth himself, and goeth his way, and straightway forgetteth what manner of man he was. But whoso looketh into the perfect law of liberty, and continueth therein, he being not a forgetful hearer, but a doer of the work, this man shall be blessed in his deed. (James 1:22-25)

Since we know that coming separate isn’t literal (because again, Jesus sends us out into the world), we know that it means forsaking fellowship with unbelievers (fake Christians!) and being delivered from evil.

 When I wrote to you before, I told you not to associate with people who indulge in sexual sin. But I wasn’t talking about unbelievers who indulge in sexual sin, or are greedy, or cheat people, or worship idols. You would have to leave this world to avoid people like that. I meant that you are not to associate with anyone who claims to be a believer yet indulges in sexual sin, or is greedy, or worships idols, or is abusive, or is a drunkard, or cheats people. Don’t even eat with such people. (1 Corinthians 5:9-11, NLT)

It’s a sanctification process. This is what being holy and set apart (or separate!) is all about!

And so, dear brothers and sisters, I plead with you to give your bodies to God because of all he has done for you. Let them be a living and holy sacrifice—the kind he will find acceptable. This is truly the way to worship him. Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect. (Romans 12:1-2, NLT)

Just think of how many commands and directives (like women wearing head coverings to church) have been tossed out the window because we’re evolving with the culture. When we’re of the world, we think like the world. God is the same God of Israel. He’s still holy and His desires haven’t changed. If we truly want to be followers of His son Jesus Christ then we have to DENY OURSELVES and walk in righteousness. We can’t be worried about our own opinions or interpretations and social rankings.

 “So don’t worry about these things, saying, ‘What will we eat? What will we drink? What will we wear?’ These things dominate the thoughts of unbelievers, but your heavenly Father already knows all your needs. Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need. (Matthew 6:31-32, NLT)

So basically it all boils down to this, if you want to come separate from this world, just read your bible and with the power of the holy ghost start DOING what it says. The results are inevitable.

Much love, Brandi