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Lowell Brueckner

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Forming a Home for the Glory of God, part I


Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger, but bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord.                                                                                    Ephesians 6:4

Raquel, our oldest daughter, and Daniel, our oldest son, both wrote about their home life in 2012. I think that a son or daughter can express with more authority the impressions of his childhood than a parent can. I might have classes, in which I give my opinions about bringing up children, but in the end, the proof lies with the children themselves. How did they see their childhood and adolescence?

Of course, we have heard our other five children speak of similar impressions, as those expressed here, but I have these written accounts conveniently at hand. They make it easy for me to convey to you, with greater strength, three basic and essential ingredients that can make a Christian home stand firm. Dan wrote to us personally and Raquel wrote in a Christmas letter the statements that I have copied. Also in 2003, Mike, the youngest son, wrote his testimony.
God’s reality in the home

Raquel being interviewed for a TV program
Raquel: God answered prayer after prayer supernaturally. None of us had any excuse to doubt God.

“Through trials, Dad and Mom always prayed for us and God always sent that peace that passes understanding. They taught us so faithfully to trust God and lived it themselves.”

“I was especially thankful for my godly upbringing when we had our car accident and we found out that especially in trials, God shows himself faithful. He filled us with such peace and joy and a supernatural acceptance that this too was God's plan, understanding that so clearly that even to this day I have never wanted to wish it all away.  And the joy remains.”  (The accident left Raquel in a wheel chair.)

Daniel:  “Another memory that is so clear in my mind was when we were living in Pinotepa. Dad was gone on a trip somewhere. Mom was home alone with us kids late at night… all the lights were out. Mom sang over and over again the song, To be like Jesus, to be like Jesus all I ask, to be like Him, all through life’s journey, from earth to glory, all I ask is to be like Him. What an example! I can’t sing the song without thinking of that time.

“I do remember a large church in Oaxaca that we used to go to quite often and dad would preach there. We all sat as a family on the men’s side of the isle with Dad until he got up to preach. There was a restaurant near the church and the owners were Christians. One of them was healed in a meeting… before that she couldn’t lift her arm.”

“I remember always looking forward to camp. The last year we went to “Camp Lebanon” you shared stories about your upbringing and our family. That last year was special. I remember the last night when Dad dismissed the meeting and no one moved. What a time of prayer we had afterwards! Two of the most rebellious young people didn’t even move for a while.”
Rachel and Mike

Mike:  “I grew up on the mission field and I have to say that I wouldn't trade that opportunity for anything in the world. When I am asked what caused me to continue in God's work after leaving home, I have to agree with the answer that my older brothers and sisters give to the same question: It's the reality of God – it’s as simple as that. We grew up in a home where God was alive and we were able to see God work on a regular basis. Day by day He would supply needs, because my parents put God first in everything. One of the biggest problems in Christian homes today is that kids are raised on a form of godliness that has no power. God isn't allowed to be real. Oh, it's what everybody says that they want, but few are willing to trust God for everything in the home. I remember making a commitment to the Lord at the age of six during a communion service.”        

“And (Joshua) said to the people of Israel, When your children ask their fathers in times to come, What do these stones mean? then you shall let your children know, Israel passed over this Jordan on dry ground. For the Lord your God dried up the waters of the Jordan for you until you passed over, as the Lord your God did to the Red Sea, which he dried up for us until we passed over, so that all the peoples of the earth may know that the hand of the Lord is mighty, that you may fear the Lord your God forever.”  (Joshua 4:21-24)

I saw these “stones” piled up in my childhood home. The moving of the Holy Spirit in the lives of my parents caused me to see the reality of God at an early age. All the pleasures of the world lose their flavor before a living and true God. To see His power and to experience His guidance dims all the brilliance of the world and the demonstrations of its capabilities. Above all else, if Christian parents want to keep their children from going in the way of the world, their children must experience the reality of God working before their eyes.

Paul wrote to Timothy of the end times, when nominal Christians would have a form of godliness, but deny its power. In my case, I knew also the reality of our enemy since I was a child. My father worked among the native people in Midwestern U.S, who know a lot about supernatural power. Dad tried to protect me from what was all around us, but it was impossible to avoid it all.

When you see someone doing strange and even supernatural things and, in taking him to psychiatrists, they tell you that there is no mental problem, then you have to consider another source for his behavior. When someone loses the use of a part of his body and the doctors tell you that they can find no cause for his condition, don’t be surprised, because in the Gospels you read of lunatics, of a lady disabled and bent over, and of a person deaf and dumb, whose infirmities Jesus attributed to demons.

When I was twelve years old, I had a Chippewa friend my age, whose older sister went to see a medicine man and immediately began to have visions of little men dancing around her bed at night. One evening in a meeting, the spirit in her manifested itself and what I saw robbed me of a lot of sleep for a long time. I knew this girl well and she was a perfectly normal teenager, but what we saw in her face in that meeting, what we heard her say and the voice with which she said it, was not hers.  I can’t describe it; you would have to see for yourself. I could give many examples.

One thing that I know since childhood is that the spiritual world is very real and the physical world is subject to this other world. God must be a palpable reality in our daily lives and our children should experience Him. An American army commander’s wife, who found Christ in meetings in our home, spoke of sensing Someone else present every time she entered the house. Not long ago, six people entered our house with TV cameras and the master of ceremonies asked me about the peace that he felt here. An elderly judge, after leaving our son’s house in Alaska, commented about the peace that he experienced inside.

Entire families were present in Christ’s meetings and the children were at hand, whenever He placed them in the midst of the people to teach about the Kingdom of God. When Jesus fed five thousand men and, on another occasion, four thousand, the writers add that women and children were also fed. It is very clear that whole families attended these events.

At one of them, a child played a very special part: “There is a boy here who has five barley loaves and two fish, but what are they for so many?” (Jn.6:9). Well, that boy found out “what they are for so many” The Bible doesn’t tell us what happened to that child, but you can be sure that he never forgot that afternoon. When the world came to him with its offers of provision, he could always think about that better world, that is a fountain for all of our needs. And when the world offered him a position, we could look back upon the ministry that he was involved in, through which about 20,000 people were fed, when he was only a little boy.

Children should be with their family, when the church comes together. Today Christians are committing the same error that the disciples committed, when parents came to Jesus, wanting Him to bless their children. The disciples wanted to dismiss them and Jesus became angry with them. In these days, the children are dismissed, when the regular meeting begins. One justification that we hear for this practice is that children cannot sit still for long and so they will create a disturbance. In that case, they are admitting a very serious lack among us, which is the fact that the parents do not know how to discipline their children. There is no excuse for this ignorance, because we have a Bible full of instructions for parents.

In past generations, the family sat together in one row. Today, it is said that the separation is justified because children cannot understand the messages and they should be in meetings, where they can be taught according to age. That is a demonstration of a carnal mentality common among Christians. They ignore the special moving of the Holy Spirit in the assembling of the church, to which children, just as the adults, are sensitive; it could be that they are even more sensitive than adults. I have seen that to be true and besides, they understand much more of the teaching than we give them credit for. However, if God doesn´t move in the meetings, I relinquish my argument. The children do not have to be in such services… neither should the adults be there.

Friend, it is the work of the parent to teach their sons and daughters the things of God in the home. I will soon prepare two more articles, related to this theme and in one of them, Raquel and Dan will tell of our family times that took place every day in our house. We prayed together for all the needs. We prayed for anyone who was sick in the home and everyone observed how God healed. We prayed when there was a financial need and all the children could see God´s answer and how he supplied. The testimonies are many, but I want to be brief in these articles and brevity causes me to be selective and concise in writing them. 


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