Category Archives: Family

Seeing God in Unusual Places

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We had a beautiful snowfall last week. The scene outside our sunroom window was picturesque. Along with the beauty of the snow, I noticed that the tree by our patio was filled with cardinals. That beautiful bright red color was almost glowing against the white snow. 

As I sat and enjoyed that scene, I began to think about all of the small things in life we often overlook because of all the “business” surrounding us. Life has a way of keeping us so busy that we miss those small blessings God has given to us.

I was reminded of a passage in the great Sermon on the Mount which says, “…consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin, yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these” (Matt. 6:28).

I began to compile a short list of small things with which God has blessed us: buds on trees in Spring, berries on bushes in Winter, daffodils and crocus sometimes pushing up through the snow, my husband’s eyes, a tiny baby’s hand or foot, a smile on the face of a child or grandchild, puppies and kittens, ripples in a pond, and many more too numerous to list.

The words to a song which our family often sings when we are together also came to mind as I thought about all of God’s blessings.

For the beauty of the earth, for the beauty of the skies,

For the love which from our birth over and around us lies.

For the beauty of each hour of the day and of the night,

Hill and vale, and tree, and flower, sun and moon, and stars of light.

For Thy church that evermore lifteth holy hands above,

Offering up on every shore her pure sacrifice of love.

Lord of all, to Thee we raise this our sacrifice of praise.

–Folliot S. Pierpoint (1864)

May our lives never get so busy that we miss the “small” blessings from God.

“Let them thank the Lord for His steadfast love, for His wondrous works to the children of man.”  Psalm 107:21


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Episode 48: Book Review of “This Momentary Marriage” by John Piper [Podcast]

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Resources abound to help marriages and families, but sifting through the piles of materials can be daunting. On this week’s podcast, Adam takes just a few minutes to share with you some strengths and some weaknesses of John Piper’s book This Momentary Marriage. We hope you will listen to this brief review, and if you find the book one you might want to purchase, you can use the link below [affiliate].


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“I’m Desperate for Snow”

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Those were the words of our bleary-eyed, barely-awake 8-year-old on a recent school morning. She had worn her pajamas inside-out and backwards, flushed ice, put a spoon under her pillow, and done her best snow dance, all to no avail. She had to wake up and go. (Don’t feel too bad for her. Her snow routine worked last night and I am currently in comfy sweats on our first official snow day of the year!)

As I have thought (and laughed) about Lyssa and her “desperation” for snow, I couldn’t help but think about David’s plea in Psalm 51:7 where he says, “Wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow;” or the beautiful words of the Lord in Isaiah 1:18: ““Come now, and let us reason together,’ says the Lord, ‘Though your sins are like scarlet, They shall be as white as snow….'”

As those Bible words entered my mind, I realized Lyssa wasn’t really that far off. She certainly was thinking of a physical want, but she brought to mind my (our) desperate spiritual need. When talking to Nicodemus in John 3, Jesus says very clearly that “unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God” and “unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God” (verses 3 & 5) Jesus also told his listeners in Matthew 18:3 that unless one is converted and becomes as a little child, will by no means enter the kingdom of heaven.

What does all that have to do with snow? Snow is a symbol of purity, cleanness, sinlessness. Jesus said unless I enter that state, I cannot see or enter His kingdom. With David, I plead to God: “Wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow.” I am spiritually desperate for snow!

“But if we walk in the light as He is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanses us from all sin.” (1 John 1:7)


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4 Reasons a Daddy Should “Date” His Daughter

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Daddy-daughter dates are a blessing in my life. A few years ago, on the eve of Mary Carol starting Kindergarten, I took her on our first date. She still remembers it, to the point that she can tell you which restaurant we went to, where we sat, and what we ate.

Admittedly, I have not been as consistent with these dates as I should have been over the last few years, but each date with my precious girl is a reminder of how special she is. We never do anything all that fancy, but we always enjoy our time together.

Lord willing, tomorrow night we will go on our next date, so it has me thinking about why I do this. Maybe this short list will help another daddy decide to date his daughter. Here are four reasons why I think you should.

  1. Listen to Her Heart. The ultimate key to these dates is that I get uninterrupted time to ask questions and find out what my daughter is really facing and thinking. Of course, we talk about a lot of fun things (she is, after all, just 10-years-old), but I try to ask questions to let me know the troubles and joys that are on her heart. I would not trade our conversations for anything.
  2. Teach Her Manners. Thankfully, my daughter is a sweet and fairly well-mannered girl. However, I desire that she truly be a lady, in the strongest sense of the word. So I try to teach her manners on our dates. She is reminded to say “sir” or “ma’am” to those at restaurants, for example. Whenever she starts dating for real (when she’s, what, about 30? Ha!) I want her to know that those same expectations will be there. On our dates, and on her dates to come, she is expected to dress modestly, and behave like a God-honoring lady.
  3. Show Her What a Gentleman Is. We dress up for our dates. I typically put on a sports coat. I open doors for her. I pay for everything. I walk on the curb side if we are by a road. Why? Because that’s what I expect any young man who dates my daughter to do. Just because he is 15 or 17 or 20 does not give him an excuse to avoid being a true gentleman. It is also the reason I do not end my dates with my daughter with even so much as a kiss on the cheek. I usually walk her to the door, tell her “thank you,” and walk away. That’s what a young gentleman will be expected to do, and I want those expectations built in early.
  4. Allow Me to Let Go of Her…Slowly! I know that one day, some young man will truly sweep my precious treasure off her feet. One day, I will move to the second-most-important man in her life. That’s the way it should be, but I want that to happen slowly. Dating my daughter gives me the opportunity to prepare myself for that day, but to do so slowly and deliberately.

There are a myriad of other reasons why I love my dates with Mary Carol. Each time we leave on a date, I just pray they are as meaningful to her little heart as they are to mine.


Daddy Dates by Greg Wright []

88 Great Daddy-Daughter Dates by Rob Teigen []

Some Rules for “Daddy Dates”


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AUTHOR: Adam Faughn

Put Up the Floodgates

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We live in a river town. The mighty Ohio flows by the Port of Paducah bringing both beauty and industry to our area. Jim and I have spent several pleasant evenings in the summer sitting down by the river watching the boats and barges go up and down that beautiful waterway. There is a floodwall that is beautifully painted with murals portraying the history of the city of Paducah and many people come to our city and enjoy the artwork on that wall.

This last week access to that beautiful resting spot was cut off because the river had risen to a dangerous level and it was thought that the floodgates would have to be installed. The heavy rains over the last couple of weeks up and down the Ohio and Mississippi rivers have caused massive flooding and many have lost their homes. The news has been full of pictures of some of the worst damage in many years due to flooding. Thousands of people have lost their homes and some have even lost their lives.

We are blessed to have a series of 51 floodgates that can be installed and protect, for the most part, our little city from the devastating flood waters. During the great flood of 1937 the city of Paducah was devastated by floodwaters, therefore the flood wall with the 51 gates was built after that event to protect those who live within the city.

I couldn’t help but think of some spiritual applications we could gain from this event. After all, danger lurks around us all of the time because Satan is ever-present and working to destroy our lives. Temptation sometimes rises higher and higher in our lives just like the flood waters do. Will I have that arsenal of floodgates to fortify that “spiritual wall,” thus keeping my heart safe from Satan?

  • Knowledge of God’s Word because I have spent time in studying His message to me and the examples He has given of how to handle different temptations in life.
  • Time spent talking to my Father in prayer and letting Him hear my voice in “prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving.”
  • When weariness overcomes me, remember the example that Jesus set of rest and solitude.
  • When my patience wears thin, remember that this is what builds strength and character in me.
  • When the peace of our nation is threatened, remember that “the peace of God which surpasses all understanding will guard your heart and mind.”
  • When my marriage is under attack, implement the kind of love found in 1 Corinthians 13.
  • When rearing godly children seems like a daunting task, remember that those children are a heritage from the Lord and the fruit of the womb a reward.
  • When my church family is weakening, remember the admonition from God for the strong to help the weak.
  • When I’m feeling overcome and alone, remember God has promised to never leave us nor forsake us.

“Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of His might.  Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil.”  Eph. 6:10-11


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Three Times the New Year’s Encouragement

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Today’s post–the last article for 2015–is a little different. Instead of one author, you are getting the thoughts of three. The three ladies who write for A Legacy of Faith all shared short end-of-the-year posts that we combined into one to encourage you as we end one year and start another.

“A Brand New Year” by Donna Faughn

A brand new year is before us – 2016. It feels like a clean slate and many are filling it with resolutions for the New Year in an attempt to make it a better year than 2015 has been for them. I quit making resolutions several years ago, because I realized they only made me feel worse when I failed to keep them. 

This year, however, I thought of one thing I am hoping will make 2016 a much better year for me and for those around me.

I have been studying the book of Hosea lately and have been so saddened by the depth of the sin of the northern kingdom of Israel. Hosea points out three particular sins of which the Israelites were guilty: idolatry, ingratitude, and hypocrisy (Hosea 2:2-13). 

It’s that second sin which really got me thinking about my own life. While I am very grateful to God for the way in which He has blessed my life – how often do I express that to Him? Can others tell that I am aware that all of my blessings have come from the hand of the benevolent God whom I serve?

2016 will be a better year for me and those around me when every day of my life is spent expressing thanks for a Father who loves me and provides for my every need.

“A Day of Reflection” by Amber Tatum

For many in our country, December 31 is a day of excitement and planning. A night of games and fun with family and friends. A night of yummy snacks and watching a fancy giant ball drop, ushering in a new year.

As is often the case, I see this day and night a bit differently. While other families often send out letters or cards at Christmas to update their friends, I like to take some time on New Year’s Eve to write our letter. This allows me to look back at the full year and remember the blessings God has given us.

So as you spend time together tonight, have fun! I will be remembering many of you on my list of blessings! From the Tatum house to yours … Happy New Year!

“A Fresh Start” by Leah Faughn

I like the beginning of a new year. It provides a fresh start, and a chance to make goals (or as most people call them, “resolutions”).

Here’s why: I feel like the type of person who always needs to improve in different areas of my life. So, while other people are making goals, it gives me motivation to make goals for my life, too. I don’t always reach those goals, but they give me some direction for the new year.

Some of my goals for 2016 are in the areas of (1) establishing more order in our home, (2) going deeper in my Bible study, and (3) a never-ending struggle to balance different areas of life: church, homeschool, home, etc.

Will I reach the summit of perfection in these areas in 2016? Who knows, but starting fresh as the year begins renews my energy to press forward. Maybe this will encourage you to press forward with your goals in 2016, as well.


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As We Prepare to Turn the Page

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If we live long enough and if the Lord has not come in the meantime, we will mark the passing another “old year” and the beginning of 2016 at midnight Thursday night. The transition from one year to the next means a lot of different things to different people.

In many ways, this particular transition promises to be one of those milestones we hear about from time to time. When 2015 comes to a close, Donna and I will complete our fifteenth year of worshiping with, working with, and loving the people who comprise the Central church of Christ in Paducah, Kentucky. 

There have been a lot of changes during these fifteen years. Some have made the headlines of major newspapers and have been “big news” on various television and radio networks. We’ve had three presidential elections during that time and are less than a year away from another one. A variety of national and international “incidents” have taken place. It may be that the most well-known of these is known now simply as 9-11. It has been observed more than once that our world changed significantly on that day.

There have been changes where I preach. These changes have included the size of the congregation, our physical facilities, ministries, and a host of other things.    

On January 1, 2001, I began serving as the preacher. I was the first “full-time” preacher for Central in a number of years. A few years later, I also began serving as one of the elders. About two-and-a-half years ago, I became one of the preachers. I now share the preaching with Robert Guinn, who came to work with us in July of 2013. The number of changes in our eldership and among our deacons would be difficult to document. 

Although our building has not moved, in many ways, Central is not the same place it was fifteen years ago. Our spiritual family has changed quite a bit in fifteen years.

The same could definitely be said about our physical family. Where do I start with that?

All five of our grandchildren have been born during the past fifteen years. Both of our children and their families have moved to different locations (a couple of times each) during those years. Both of Donna’s parents have passed from this life, as has our son-in-law’s father. (My parents had already left us before our time at Central. My father passed from this life less than a month before we began our work here and my mother had done the same a little over a year earlier.)

Just the past few months have been a whirlwind. While we still live in Paducah, we have “downsized” and moved to a new (for us) house. We made it over our first hurdle during Thanksgiving. Both of our children, their spouses, and their children were at our new residence. That meant that eleven people were sharing an area that is maybe 3/5 the size of the area we used to have. 

It was a new experience, but it was a good new experience. I hope that you have read Donna’s post “Where Love Abides,” which is about our first Thanksgiving in our new place. We learned that it is, indeed, true that “love is where the heart is.”

By the time a person gets to be my age, he or she should have figured out that most of the new experiences in life are in the past. That does not mean, however, that there is nothing worthwhile or positive to which we can look forward.

As we look back with fondness and appreciation on times spent with those who are truly our loved ones, we can also look forward to opportunities to deepen those relationships and focus on what truly is important. 

In reality, “world events” are not the things that are really important to us as individuals, unless they affect us personally. Our address doesn’t matter as much as the relationship we have with the others who live at that address. Various “roles” mean much less than close relationships.

Those special holiday times and other things like birthdays, anniversaries, etc. may also cause us to reflect on memories we all have of those who are no longer with us, but who are still in our hearts. It also may cause us to think about the times when we will be only a memory to those whom we love. That realization, hopefully, will instill in us a resolve to leave behind good memories. 

I have a suggestion as we come to the close of an old year and prepare to embark upon a new one.  To coin a phrase, it would be difficult to think of many resolutions for a new year than to leave behind–

A Legacy of Faith


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The Value of Christian Hospitality

Hospitality is an important trait for the Christian. Many people are nervous about opening their homes to others. This week, Leah and Adam share why hospitality means so much to them, and give some tips on how to get started.

(Click here to watch on YouTube.)


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The Most Wonderful Time of the Year

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It’s here! It’s here! One of my favorite times of year is here – Christmas-time!

As I am writing this, The Polar Express is playing on my TV and we are about to the part that still makes me cry when I read it to my children: “The bell still rings for those who truly believe.” Um, yeah. I have a bell as one of my decorations … and, yes, I can hear it!

This is a busy time and, for many, a difficult time. Some try to turn it into a time of debate. Still others seem to take great delight in trying to out-Grinch the Grinch.

But for me, and I hope for my children, this is a time of joy. Why? Because I love the idea of thoughtful giving. I love the increased opportunities to make people smile. I love the parties, the presents and, yes, the parcels. I love the magic!

Parents, especially moms, don’t miss this special time to teach your children about giving. I think wish lists and letters to Santa are great, but make sure you take the opportunity to teach them to be giving, too. Think about people who may not have a pile of presents to open. Maybe the elderly need a visit and some child-crafted Christmas joy. Maybe there is a family you know (or don’t know but can find out about through a school or other organization) for whom you can be Santa. You haven’t really lived until you’ve done a drop-and-dash Santa stop and shaken the jingle bells as you run away! Maybe there is someone who has suffered loss who will be alone unless you reach out with an invitation to Christmas dinner.

During this hectic, fun season don’t forget a major priority as a parent – teaching. Teach your children to see through compassionate eyes. Teach them to love giving as much as receiving. And teach them to help create the magic around them … now and all year through.

“Give, and it will be given to you: good measure, pressed down, shaken together, and running over will be put into your bosom. For with the same measure that you use, it will be measured back to you.” Luke 6:38

“And remember the words of the Lord Jesus, that He said, ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’” Acts 20:35b


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“Sir, We Need Your Permission To…”

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It is a fear of every parent. All of us who have children at home and those of us who have children who have their own families dread a call informing us of a serious injury and/or illness.

A few years ago, a friend of mine received one of those calls. His seventeen-year-old daughter had been involved in an automobile accident. 

Fortunately, the injuries she sustained did not appear to be serious, but the doctors wanted to make sure. The father was told that he had to give his consent before his daughter could be treated.

Of course, he quickly gave his consent. The appropriate testing and treatment was done. His daughter recovered.

Please think with me a moment. Can you think of any procedure for which an “under-age” girl does not need parental consent and/or notification? Can you think of such a procedure that will definitely result in death? 

Are you aware of the fact that some of our states will allow a girl who is under the age of eighteen to abort a child she is carrying without any requirement to notify her parents and/or get their consent? Are you aware of the fact that there is a growing drumbeat of support for making this the policy of our entire nation? 

Interestingly, and alarmingly enough, the website of Planned Parenthood provides information for a variety of “work-arounds” for young ladies who happen to live in a state that requires parental permission/notification. I suppose one should expect that from our nation’s largest abortion provider. 

Is it just me, or is there something terribly wrong with this sort of “logic?” What kind of sense does it make to demand parental permission to treat what appears to be a relatively minor injury while, at the same time, allowing an unborn child’s life to be terminated with no such demands or restrictions?

I pray that you will think about that.


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