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The Gift of the Magi

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The R.O.C.K. Club Wants You to Experience a Different Kind of Christmas

In 1905, author William Sydney Porter, better known by his pen name, O. Henry, wrote the story, “The Gift of the Magi.” In it, a poor couple struggles to find the perfect Christmas gift for each other. In doing so, they each give up what is dearest to themselves. The story shows, however, that what truly was dearest to them was not their treasured material items; it was each other. This lesson, sadly, gets lost many times in our culture as the Christmas season approaches. We collectively long for the gifts, when what is really important is the spirit of giving.  People are so focused on buying the latest gadgets they miss the big picture of love and caring. Here at the R.O.C.K. Club in Radford, VA, we want you to experience a different kind of holiday this year. Don’t miss the blessing from embracing the spirit of giving.

Understanding the Gift of the Magi

Henry took the title of his story from the Biblical account of the wise men. These wise men visited Jesus when He was a child. They brought three gifts of great value: gold, frankincense, and myrrh. They realized that the value of these material possessions was nothing compared to the value of who received them. Their gifts gave rise to our tradition of giving presents at Christmas. But lately, the value of the gifts has become more important than the relationship of the giver and recipient.  Shoppers rudely scramble through stores, trying to beat our neighbor to the “must-have” present of the year. Gift recipients tear at the wrapping on Christmas morning like a hungry bear. We barely mutter a “thank you,” if we say it all. How many blessings and moments of joy do we miss because we have lost the spirit of giving? We’ve forgotten the love and heartfelt care that comes with it.

God Gave the Greatest Gift of All

The ultimate example of the spirit of giving comes from God Himself. He loved us so much that He gave His only begotten Son, Jesus, to pay the price for our sins. Our wrongdoing separates us from God, and there is nothing that we can ever do ourselves to mend that relationship. But God values you so much that He was willing to sacrifice His Son so that you can have eternal life.  In the Bible, Romans 8:32 reads, “He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things?” Later in the Bible, 1 John 4:10 reads, “Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that he loved us, and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins.” Through Jesus, God now offers eternal life as a gift. Will you receive it this Christmas?

The Gift of the Magi is the Spirit of Giving

This Christmas season, don’t miss it. The value of the gifts, no matter the cost, is far less than the value of the giving. If we would just embrace that truth, our holiday season would be so much sweeter. People hustle, bustle, and stress our way through Christmas. What would happen if, this holiday season, we embrace the spirit of giving instead of embracing the gifts? Not only that, but what would happen if we taught it to the next generation? The gift of the magi is the spirit of giving. What do you value? Here at the R.O.C.K. Club in Radford, VA, we offer outstanding and compassionate Christian child care and tutoring. We would also love to tell you more about how you can have a true relationship with God through Jesus Christ. Call us today at (540) 267-3000. This holiday season, will you learn the spirit of giving from the gift of the magi?

Always Be Thankful!

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The R.O.C.K. Club Believes that Every Day Should Be Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving is an amazing time to develop an attitude of gratitude, but shouldn’t we always be thankful? When the calendar flips its page to November, our attention always turns to Thanksgiving. Our thoughts are about the turkey, the mashed potatoes, and all of those delicious side dishes. Thoughts also turn toward quality time spent with family and friends. And we should begin to contemplate the true meaning of the holiday, which is thankfulness.  But is Thanksgiving the only season where we should be thankful? Here at the R.O.C.K. Club in Radford, VA, we believe that Thanksgiving should last all year long! But how can we foster an “always be thankful” mindset?

Always Be Thankful, No Matter What

In the Bible, 1 Thessalonians 5:18 reads, “In every thing give thanks…” But how is that possible? Can somebody really be thankful when they go through rough times? Yes, it is possible! Developing an “always be thankful” mentality first depends on a shift of perspective. We need to begin to concentrate on the things we have, not the things we don’t have. When our thoughts dwell on what we don’t have, we don’t consider the blessings all around us. Did you wake up this morning? Were you able to breathe? That’s something to be thankful for. If you know what to look for, there are reasons to always be thankful, no matter where you are in life.

God Has Done So Much for You

The thought of thanksgiving has become so ubiquitous that we now take the term for granted. But when we think about it, shouldn’t there be a recipient for our gratitude? When we are “thankful,” shouldn’t someone get the thanks? That someone is God. God has done so much for us. He gives us the breath in our lungs. He provides us with the food on our table. It is His creation that we admire every day. We should always be thankful to God for all that He has done for us. The greatest thing that God has ever done for us is to send His Son, Jesus, to pay the price for our sins. It is through Jesus’ sacrifice that we can have eternal life. That’s something to always be thankful for!

The R.O.C.K. Club Wants You to Always Be Thankful

The R.O.C.K. Club wants you to always be thankful. There is so much to be thankful for! When you develop an attitude of gratitude, your life will become so much more positive. You will begin to influence everyone around you for the better. The world becomes a much sunnier place when you celebrate Thanksgiving every day! Give it a try right now; we know it will do you good. The R.O.C.K. Club in Radford, VA, offers outstanding and compassionate Christian child care and tutoring. We would also love to tell you how you can have a true relationship with God through Jesus Christ. Call us today at (540) 267-3000. When you see the blessings that surround you in your life, you can always be thankful!

Monsters Under My Bed?

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The R.O.C.K. Club Cares About Your Children’s Safety and Innocence

Every parent, at one time or another, has heard this tearful question, “Are there monsters under my bed?” And every parent has consoled their fearful child with the confident reassurance that monsters aren’t real. Unfortunately, we live in a world where monsters are real. They are not the hairy, fanged beasts from our nightmares; these monsters exist as dangerous human predators, looking to steal a child’s innocence.  Even the culture itself can prey on a child, entering the sanctuary of the home through a television, laptop, or smartphone. At the R.O.C.K. Club in Radford, VA, we care about your children. And we want to help you keep them safe, physically, mentally, and emotionally. To that end, we’re blogging this month about a few things to consider.

Protect Them from Physical and Internet Predators

It’s practically inconceivable that someone would want to hurt a child, physically, emotionally, or mentally. It is a sad, infuriating reality, however. And a child’s innocence can suddenly shatter by just overhearing one of these horror stories. “Why would someone do that?” is a heartbreaking question for a parent to answer. But honestly, we have to prepare our children for the unthinkable. Warn them about the dangers of strangers. Children can be very trusting. Let them know that even if someone says that they know you, that doesn’t mean that it’s true. 

Children Should Run to Safety from Those Who Accost Them

Only send people that they know well to get them, and make sure that they fully understand this. If someone they don’t know accosts them, they should make a scene. They should run for someone they can trust, such as a police officer or a teacher. Teach them the boundaries of acceptable behavior, even with people that they know. Teach them, as well, that an offer of candy and other things is no reason to go with someone.

Parents Must Emphasize Avoiding Internet Predators

However, in our culture, internet predators have replaced the “creepy man in the windowless van” many times. These marauding monsters use the open avenue of computers, laptops, and smartphones to trick and trap young children and teens. Parents and guardians must use the same mindset and tactics to warn our children about the dangers of internet predators. Whether on gaming consoles or social media, they should not talk to anyone that they do not know. And even with people that they know, they should again understand the boundaries of acceptable behavior.

No ‘Monsters Under My Bed,’ But the Culture Will Prey on Them

Even if you guard your children and teens from human predators, “monsters” can still infiltrate your home. You may not even know it. They come as shows or movies on streaming services, videos on YouTube, or even live streams on gaming channels. The culture is ready to teach your child or teen all of the things that they don’t need to know. You can’t guard their eyes, ears, and minds 24 hours a day, seven days a week. But what you can do is teach them the right things.  When banks train their tellers to recognize counterfeit currency, they don’t train them with fake bills. They use real money. These tellers will fully understand the look and feel. Then when a fake bill comes across their counter, they know it is a fake. Use the same approach with your kids. Teach them what is right and good. That way, when something wrong crosses their path, they know it’s wrong. Someone somewhere is going to teach your child. Make sure that someone is you.

The R.O.C.K. Club Wants to Help You 

Here at the R.O.C.K. Club in Radford, VA, we care about the families of the New River Valley. Our club wants to help you raise children that stand for the right things as good citizens. With this in mind, we offer a variety of Christian-based educational programs for children from preschool through age 12. We work hard to meet the academic and spiritual needs of families all across our area. Our team would love to help you, too. Contact us today. We care about the safety and mental and spiritual well-being of your children and teens! The R.O.C.K. Club in Radford, VA, offers outstanding and compassionate Christian child care and tutoring. We would also love to tell you how you can have a relationship with God through Jesus Christ. Call us today at (540) 267-3000. Prepare your children for the dangers out there, even if there are no real “monsters under my bed.”

Take Some Time to Slow Down and Relax

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The R.O.C.K. Club Cares About Your Physical and Mental Health 

If there is one thing that people need to do, it is to take some time to slow down and relax. We live in a busy, “in-your-face” world. The kids have school, practice, and activities. Our jobs ask more and more from us. And even our supposed relaxation times are nothing close to relaxing. Social media, 24-hour news cycles, streaming services, e-mails, and text messages all compete for our attention.   We understand the demands that today’s culture places on people. But we all need that time to unwind, unplug, relax, and allow ourselves some physical, mental, and spiritual recovery. We here at The R.O.C.K. Club in Radford, VA, care about our neighbors throughout the New River Valley. With that in mind, we want to use our blog to encourage you to slow down and relax. We also want to give you some tips on how to unplug and enjoy life.

Read a Book. Take a Walk. Just Unplug! 

Many, many people have said that this is the best time to be alive. And in a variety of ways, they are right. We can see news from the other side of the world as it happens. We can be in constant connection with anyone, anywhere, at any time. But there is also much to be said about the way our forefathers lived, too. We were not created to stare at screens, social media, and smartphones all day and night.   We need to find time to unplug, slow down, and relax. What can you do, though, to unplug in a plugged-in world? There are many things to do if you just look around. Find a quiet room and read a book. Take a walk in the woods and enjoy nature. Just sit in a relaxing chair and listen to music. Visit an art museum and take your time. Find an unplugged hobby. Constant stimulation from screens is not healthy in the long run. Go and enjoy life.

Make Sure to Spend Some Unplugged Time with God 

Here at The R.O.C.K. Club, we care about your physical and mental well-being. That is why we want to encourage you to slow down and relax. But we also care about your spiritual well-being. This is actually the most important part of your life. With that in mind, we want to encourage you to take some time, unplug, and get alone with God. You never waste time when you give it to God. But to enjoy time with God, you first have to have a relationship with God. That only comes by knowing Jesus Christ as your Savior. If you want to know more about trusting Jesus to save you, please contact our office today. We would love to talk to you about having a real relationship with God.  For more information on The R.O.C.K. Club’s Christ-centered childcare and educational programs, call us today at (540) 267-3000. Let us help you understand how you can have a real relationship with God through Jesus. We also want you to find time in your day to slow down and relax! 

Are You Ready to Go Back to School?

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The R.O.C.K. Club in Radford, VA, Wants You to Have the Proper Mindset 

It’s time; are you ready to go back to school? We all understand that summer seems to go by too quickly. But soon, students will be back in the classroom, picking up their studies once again. So, the question again is: are you ready to go back to school? The R.O.C.K. Club in Radford, VA, wants every student to be ready to go as they enter the classroom.   With this in mind, we want to discuss your school preparations for this month’s blog. This is not, however, a list of supplies to buy at Target or Wal-Mart. This is a call for students to focus, study hard, and approach the coming year with a good attitude. Maintaining the right attitude and mindset is half the battle when it comes to going back to school. 

Focus on Studying Hard with a Good Attitude 

A good way to view your education in elementary school, high school, and even college is that it is your job. It is one of your highest priorities. You are building your foundation for the future, and you want the foundation to be strong as possible. It’s an old adage, but just as true today: “You answer for you.” It is ultimately your responsibility to listen in class, do your homework, and study as hard as you can.   You need to adopt this work ethic and a positive attitude. Keep your eyes on the big picture. And remember that it is OK to ask for help. Everyone has a subject or two that they may not understand as easily as others. Your teacher is there to help you. Ask them to clarify or further explain the subject matter. Teachers are not your enemies. They want to see you thrive and succeed! 

The R.O.C.K. Club Wants to Help You with Your School Year 

Your friends here at The R.O.C.K. Club in Radford, VA, want to see you thrive and succeed, too. We offer a wide variety of faith-based educational programs for children from preschool to 12 years old. Our goal is to ensure that we meet the specific needs of every child that attends our programs.   We strive to meet the academic and spiritual needs of the New River Valley families that we serve. Our team would love to help you, too. Contact us today to discover what The R.O.C.K. Club can do for you.  For more information on The R.O.C.K. Club’s Christ-centered childcare and educational programs, call us at (540) 267-3000. Let us help you understand how you can have a real relationship with God through Jesus. We want you to academically thrive and succeed as you go back to school! 

Celebrating Independence Day

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The R.O.C.K. Club Encourages You to Think About the Reason 

It’s July, and people all across the United States of America are thinking about celebrating Independence Day. They may watch the annual hot dog eating contest on television. Families probably will have a picnic with hot dogs, hamburgers, and potato salad. They will definitely enjoy some fireworks when the sun goes down.  But how many will give more than a quick thought to the true meaning of Independence Day? More importantly, will you take some time and consider the true meaning of Independence Day? Or will it just be another holiday for you? The R.O.C.K. Club in Radford, VA, wants to encourage you to think about freedoms during as you observe Independence Day!

Celebrate The Birthday of American Freedom 

In early 1776, the United States of America was the dream of patriots desiring freedom from King George III. They made steps to declare their independence as tensions between the colonists and England continued to grow. The Second Continental Congress tasked “the Committee of Five,” to draft the declaration of independence.  This group consisted of John Adams, Benjamin Franklin, Thomas Jefferson, Roger Sherman, and Robert Livingston.  They began work on June 11, 1776, giving the writing duties to Jefferson after discussing the content. The committee presented its finished document to Congress on June 28, 1776. On July 4, Congress voted for its approval of this Declaration of Independence, and the delegates signed it. At that moment, they all became traitors against the British crown, under penalty of death. 

Remember A Celebration of Freedom and Those Who Fought to Win It 

The conflict between the American colonies and the British continued until October 1781. At this point, British General Cornwallis surrendered after the siege of Yorktown, VA. The British finally recognized American independence. Both sides signed the Treaty of Paris in 1783, and the dream of the United States of America was realized.  Though the fighting began one year before the Declaration of Independence and lasted five years, they signed it on July 4, 1776. That is what we celebrate on Independence Day. We celebrate the birthday of the United States of America and remember those who fought hard to obtain our freedom. 

You Can Experience Freedom in Jesus 

This Independence Day, we will once again be grateful for the freedom we have in the United States of America. But there is another freedom, a greater freedom, that all of us can experience. It doesn’t matter if we are citizens of the United States of America or not. This freedom is open to every person. This is freedom from sin, from both guilt and penalty. Jesus won this freedom for us on the cross when he took our place in punishment.   All sin must be punished, just like a criminal in court. And every one of us is a sinner and deserves punishment. But Jesus loved you so much that He took your place and paid the price for you. Now, to have this freedom, you just have to come to Jesus and trust Him to save you. Pray and ask Him to be your Savior. And you, too, can experience freedom in Jesus. The Bible reads, in John 8:36, “If the Son therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed.”  For more information on The R.O.C.K. Club’s Christ-centered childcare and educational programs, call us today at (540) 267-3000. Let us help you understand how you can have a real relationship with God through Jesus. We want you to personally experience the freedom found in Jesus and know Him when you are celebrating Independence Day! 

Discover Some Fun Summer Activities

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The R.O.C.K. Club Wants to Help You Make Your Summer Memorable 

School break is here (or soon will be), and that means it’s time for summer activities. There are some amazing, memorable, and fun things to do over the summer. However, many kids and teens will spend their summer watching hours of TV or streaming services, or playing video games. We understand that summer is a break from studying, tests, and school. And everyone deserves to kick back and relax once in a while. But there are so many activities to do during summer break, cool and interesting activities that will make summer memorable.   At The R.O.C.K. Club in Radford, VA, we want to help you discover some amazing summer activities, maybe in your own backyard. This month, let’s take a look at how to have the fun summer to remember for a lifetime. 

Is Summer Designated as “Lazy Time”? 

Isn’t it the “right,” however, of every student, to be lazy for three months until school starts again? Isn’t it a rite of passage to wake up late, lay on the couch all day, and go back to bed? Not really. There is so much to do during the summer, but being lazy or procrastinating usually rules the time. Think about this, though: When you are older, will you fondly remember the time you streamed an entire series in one day? But you may ask, what else is there to do?  

Follow Your Imagination to Amazing Summer Activities  

There is an infinite amount of summer activities, and they are limited only by your imagination. Scrolling through the Internet or social media is a pastime for many during the summer. Be proactive, and search for destinations or activities in your own town or county. Visit a museum. See how many books you can read before school starts again. Discover programs at state parks, or just get outdoors and learn about nature for yourself.   Find out about camps, or even day camps, dedicated to any possible subject. Your church may sponsor a trip to a week-long youth camp. Look around for summer jobs to make some money and learn some new skills. The list is endless, and you may even discover a life-long interest or hobby this summer.

Get Proactive, and Make This a Memorable Summer 

The main focus is to be proactive, and not lazy. You may have an interest or aptitude in science, art, or history, but you don’t yet realize it. Summer is waiting for you. Will you experience it to its fullest? This is the time to discover and do. Determine that this summer you will find a new abundance of summer activities to enjoy. This summer can be the summer to do, see, and experience cool things. Make it memorable. For more information on The R.O.C.K. Club’s Christ-centered childcare and educational programs, call us today at (540) 267-3000. Let us also help you understand how you can have a real relationship with God through Jesus. Have a great summer, and enjoy a bunch of cool summer activities! 

A Strong Finish to the School Year

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At The R.O.C.K. Club, We Want You to Finish with Hard Work

Every student, from kindergarten to college, should want a strong finish to the school year. A strong finish will carry their momentum through the summer months and into the next term. However, as thoughts of a coming break circulate in their minds, many students just want to finish. They allow themselves to burn out or just coast in neutral to the finish line. This is especially true for seniors, as the infamous “senioritis” settles into their systems.   In a race, successful runners work hardest with the finish line in sight. The same should be true for students. We here at The R.O.C.K. Club in Radford, VA, want to help you with a strong finish to the school year. With that in mind this month, let’s look at the effort that will fuel your finish this term.

A Strong Finish to the School Year Depends on Focus and Effort 

So, how do you manage a strong finish to the school year? It’s all about effort and focus. One trend in today’s society that people love to discover is “life hacks.” However, there is no hack for hard work. Simply put, to have a strong finish, you have to keep pushing hard to the very end. There is an old saying: “Don’t count your chickens before they’re hatched.”   This lesson is to not get ahead of yourself. This happens regularly, however, for many students at the end of the school year. As May flips the calendar, their effort and focus give way to thoughts of summer activities uninhibited by tests and homework. You have to push those thoughts to the background, and first finish your schoolwork. Dig deep, focus on the present, and give it your best effort. 

Success is In Your Hands; Work Hard 

What is the catalyst, though, to this hard work and focus? What fuels the effort? What is the wood to the fire that will carry you to a strong finish to the school year? The answer is a view of the big picture. You are currently building the foundation for your future. What is school? It is much more than learning historical facts, or how to do algebra. While those are important, you also learn how to think and work. That will help you in every area of your life, no matter what path you choose.   With an eye on your future, instead of the instant gratification of summer activities, you will see how important it is to strongly finish. Success is in your hands. Determine in your heart and mind that you will focus and work hard.   For more information on The R.O.C.K. Club’s Christ-centered childcare and educational programs, call us today at (540) 267-3000. We also want to help you understand how you can have a real relationship with God through Jesus. Working hard with focus can help you have a strong finish to the school year. 

Understanding the Easter Story

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Here at The R.O.C.K. Club, We Want You to Know Jesus 

Do you know the Easter story, the reason behind the holiday? It’s not about bunnies, chocolate, candy, and baskets. Those are definitely fun bonuses to the season’s activities. But they don’t represent the true meaning of Easter. So then, the question is: what is the holiday really about? Why do we celebrate Easter every spring? The true meaning behind the celebration is the resurrection of Jesus, God’s Son, winning victory over death.   He was crucified on a cross, bled, and died, but three days later, He rose from the grave. Here at The R.O.C.K. Club in Radford, VA, we want you to understand the true meaning of the Easter holiday. So, this month, let’s take a deeper look at the Easter story.

Truly Understanding the Easter Story 

Even though Easter is about Jesus’ crucifixion and resurrection, the story starts even before that. To truly understand the Easter story, you must first understand the truth that all people are sinners. In the Bible, Romans 3:23 reads, “For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God.” Every one of us has done wrong things, and that sin separates us from a holy God. There was nothing we could ever do to make amends to God, and our punishment was death. In the Bible, Romans 6:23 reads, “For the wages of sin is death.”   But God loves us so much that He sent His Son, Jesus, as a substitute to take our punishment. Jesus paid for our sins on the cross when He died, and then He rose from the grave to give us victory over death. That is the Easter story. It’s a story of victory, a story of love, and a story of grace. It’s a story where God gave us what we didn’t deserve.

You Can Personally Have a Relationship with Jesus 

There’s one more thing to know about the Easter story: It’s about you. As we said above, all people are sinners, and deserve punishment for their sins. That includes you. But Jesus loves you so much that He gave you the greatest gift He could, the gift of Himself. He shed His blood and died for your sins. He paid the debt you owed. And now, to have eternal life and a real relationship with God, all you have to do is trust Jesus.   Ask Him for salvation. He offers eternal life to you as a gift. Will you accept His gift or reject it? The most important decision in life is what to do with Jesus. What will you do? For more information on The R.O.C.K. Club’s Christ-centered childcare and educational programs, call us today at (540) 267-3000. Let us help you understand how you can have a real relationship with God through Jesus. We want you to personally experience the truth, love, and grace of the Easter story! 

Are You Hearing God’s Voice?

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We Here at The R.O.C.K. Club Want You to Follow God’s Leading 

Here’s something to seriously consider: Are you hearing God’s voice? There are many voices competing for our attention in our society. They come from many different places, and all get louder and louder, talking over each other. They all want you to listen to them. But there is only one voice that has your very best interests at heart.   That is God’s voice. He has the perfect plan for your life, the plan that will bring true joy and peace. He wants you to hear Him, listen to Him, and follow Him. But how can you truly know if you are hearing God’s voice? We here at The R.O.C.K. Club in Radford, VA, want to help you to hear God’s voice in your life. 

Elijah Heard God’s ‘Still Small’ Voice 

First off, the Bible gives us an amazing example of someone hearing God’s voice in 1 Kings 19. The prophet Elijah had just won a great battle for God over wicked King Ahab in the previous chapter. After hearing what he had done, the evil Queen Jezebel threatened to kill him, and Elijah ran away. He was listening to the voices of fear and sadness. In the wilderness, he even said that he simply wanted to die.   However, God met him there. The Bible states that there was a great wind, but the voice of God wasn’t in the wind. There was also an earthquake and a fire, but God’s voice wasn’t in those epic events, either. God’s voice came as a “still small voice” to Elijah. Elijah had to be listening.   

You Can’t Hear God’s Voice Without Personally Knowing Him 

Just like to Elijah, God’s voice doesn’t come to us through bombastic means. God still speaks in a still small voice to those who are listening for him. There are some things to remember, however. First, you can’t hear God’s voice without personally knowing Him. There is a big difference between knowing Him and knowing about Him. The only way you can personally know God is through trusting Jesus Christ as your Savior.   Next, you must be in tune with Him. You can’t hear your favorite radio station if you don’t tune your radio to it. The same goes for God. You must know Him and be right with Him. You won’t hear an audible voice, but God will speak in your life. Lastly, God will never tell you anything that doesn’t match up with His Word, the Bible. God never contradicts Himself, so His plan for your life will match the Bible. Are you prepared for hearing God’s voice? He has great things ready for you. You just have to listen.  For more information on The R.O.C.K. Club’s Christ-centered childcare and educational programs, call us today at (540) 267-3000. Let us help you understand how you can have a real relationship with God through Jesus. We are in your corner, and we want you to experience hearing God’s voice! 

The R.O.C.K. Club in Radford, VA, Cares About You and Your Family

One of the great needs in our culture is the need for people to create and maintain healthy relationships. Everything today, it seems, is instant, digital, and “on-the-go,” including our personal interactions. Screen time takes the place of family time. Long, deep conversations have given way to text messages, even between people in the same room. We’re not saying that modern technology is a bad thing. It makes many laborious tasks much easier and brings people together from great distances. But when it takes the place of healthy relationships, it needs to be re-evaluated. This month, we here at The R.O.C.K. Club in Radford, VA, want to discuss the need for healthy relationships.

Learn About the Need for Healthy Relationships in Our Culture

Take a look around you as compared to decades ago. Yes, we still had problems. Yes, there were still fights, people at odds with each other, and broken homes. But these issues, and more, have reached critical mass in our present society. The dire need for healthy, face-to-face, personal relationships is more evident than ever before. We have closer relationships with our smartphones, gaming consoles, and streaming services than our own spouse, children, or friends. It is common to see a family or a group of friends together with everybody on their phones or devices. Beyond technology, there are many broken families in the United States. The National Fatherhood Initiative reports that, according to the United States Census Bureau, 18.3 million children live in fatherless homes. Our hats are off to those single parents who love their children and fight to make it work. We need a resurgence of healthy familial relationships and friendships in the United States today.

Understand How to Create Healthy Relationships Between Spouses

It’s a fact; if you are married, your closest interpersonal relationship should be with your spouse. Your marriage is vitally important. Marriage and the family are the first institutions ever created by God. In the Bible, Genesis 2:24 reads, “Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh.” God constructed your marriage for a purpose. It is worth fighting for. Schedule regular date nights between you and your spouse with no children and no screens. Just enjoy each other’s company and conversation. Get your face out of your device and hold hands with your spouse. Talk to your spouse. Kiss your spouse in front of your children, so that they can see that Daddy and Mommy still love each other. Too many people give up on their marriage because, as they say, “they fell out of love.” No, you “fell” out of infatuation. There’s a big difference. Love isn’t a feeling. Love is a verb. Love is worthwhile work. Work hard at it.

Create Healthy Relationships with Your Children

Your children need you. They need you much more than your job needs you or your hobby needs you. Too many parents, especially fathers, prioritize other things above healthy relationships with their children. And the children suffer for it. The home is where they learn about love, respect, manners, and adherence to authority. Children need your love, support, and guidance. When we as parents don’t offer that, they will find it on the Internet, their friends, or other unhealthy avenues. Make “game night” with your children a regular occurrence, with no screens and no distractions. When your children want to talk, listen. Spend quality time with them. Learn what they like and get involved with it. Reassure them that you love them, in word and action. Children need their “home team.”

Have Healthy Relationships with Friends

In the 17th century, English poet John Donne wrote, “No man is an island, entire of itself.” This is just as true today as it was then. We are not meant to go through life without the support and love of others. In the Bible, Proverbs 27:17 reads, “Iron sharpeneth iron; so, a man sharpeneth the countenance of his friend.” As well, Proverbs 17:17 reads, “A friend loveth at all times, and a brother is born for adversity.” God wants us to have friends to lean on and link shields with, in good and bad times. This comes, however, with a caveat. When we were young, our parents told us to not run around with people who will get us in trouble. This advice goes for adults as much as children. Our healthy relationships need to be with friends who will love us, support us, and encourage us. No healthy friendship exists with someone who belittles you, always acts selfishly, or wants to cause problems.

It’s Important to Have a Healthy Relationship with Jesus Christ

The most important relationship that you can have, though, isn’t with your spouse. It isn’t with your children or your friends. The most important, most beneficial relationship that you can have is with Jesus. He loves you so much that He came to shed His blood and die on a cross for your sins. Jesus wants you to have eternal life, so He took your punishment for you. In the Bible, Jesus said in John 15:13, “Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.” Jesus is the one friend who will stick by you throughout your life. In Hebrews 13:5, He tells us, “… I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.” He will always guide you on the right path as you follow Him, day after day. The best, healthiest relationship of your life can start right now. Realize that you are a sinner and that your sin deserves punishment in a place called Hell. But Jesus took that punishment for you, and now He will save you if you call out to Him.

The R.O.C.K. Club is Here for You and Your Family

Here at The R.O.C.K. Club in Radford, VA, we care about your entire family. We offer Christ-centered childcare and educational programs for your children. But we also want to see healthy relationships among families and friends all across the New River Valley. Most of all, we pray that you will see the importance of having a relationship with Jesus Christ. If you have any questions about salvation and following Jesus, please call us. We would love to explain more to you about how you can have eternal life through Jesus Christ. There will always be trouble, obstacles, and problems in the world. But with healthy relationships, and Jesus leading the way, we will be more than conquerors (Romans 8:37)! Learn more about healthy relationships and The R.O.C.K. Club’s Christ-centered childcare and educational programs, call us today at (540) 267-3000. Let us help you understand how you can have a real relationship with God through Jesus. Let’s fight for our spouses, children, and friends by having healthy relationships!

Starting New in 2022

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The R.O.C.K. Club Wants to Help You Reboot the Right Way 

With every new year, the possibility of starting new shines again like the dawn of another day. The opportunities are endless; the new year is like a blank canvas. Your restart can be something as simple as getting organized to something much bigger, like a career change. But as the calendar turns from 2021 to 2022, the rest of your life stretches out to the horizon. Will you make the choice to change and reboot your life?  Many people make New Year’s resolutions every Jan. 1. And a majority of those people break those same resolutions on Jan. 2. Well, maybe not that quickly. But according to a Jan 28, 2020, New York Post article, the average person breaks their resolution by Feb. 1. That’s just 32 days. However, the article reported that 68 percent of the polled people gave up even sooner than that.

Support on Starting New in 2022 with The R.O.C.K. Club 

Here at the R.O.C.K. Club in Radford, VA, we want to help you restart the right way. We care about you and desire to see you succeed with starting new this year. This month, let’s discuss starting new, whether you just want to add one good habit or change your lifestyle. First, let’s explore why we give up on our new directions so quickly. Then, we will look at a few tips to help you on your way to starting new. We may be geared toward educating children in the New River Valley, but we want to see the entire family succeed. 

Starting New: Why Do We Give Up So Quickly? 

So, we have to ask the obvious, elusive question: Why do we give up so quickly on starting new? We decide to change something for the better, and, one month later, we are back in the same rut. What happened between January and February? The truth is there are a myriad of reasons why we fail. It’s different for every person.    The wise choice, however, before you personally make a resolution is to do a little “soul-searching.” Take a truthful inventory of your personality, including your faults. Recognize any potential obstacles, and make a plan to overcome them. Don’t just jump into the new year with the unbothered declaration of “I’m doing this!” You will just find yourself in the same place on Jan. 1, 2023. 

 Old Habits Can Be Hard to Change When Starting New 

As we already said, there are countless reasons why we fail with starting new in the new year. Even so, here are a few common issues that we may have to overcome: 

 We are entrenched in our old habits. 

There is a reason we call them “habits.” These actions are settled tendencies in our lives, and we perform them without even thinking. From chewing pencils to smoking cigarettes, these habits have entrenched themselves in our lives and personalities. It is always much easier to fall back into our old ways than to try to cut a new path. It is presently more comfortable for us, even though those old ways may be very harmful over time. 

 We really don’t want to restart. 

We can easily make bold proclamations. People do it every day, from your co-worker to politicians in Washington, D.C. As the old saying states, “Talk is cheap.” And another old saying declares that “actions speak louder than words.” Do you really want to restart? Or did you just make a “resolution” because that’s what you do when the new year comes? Before you ever change anything, you have to truly decide that you must change it. 

 We tend to procrastinate. 

Unfortunately, it’s human nature. We put things off until “tomorrow,” “next Monday,” “next month,” or “next year.” A few of us may be go-getters. But, more often than not, most of us have some tendency toward procrastination. When we decide to change, or we stumble in that pursuit, we look toward the next day with good intentions. However, the next day then becomes the next day, and our reboot soon slips out of mind. 

 We aim too high. 

Sure, we have big goals, but it is possible to aim too high. We set out to conquer Mount Everest on Jan. 1. When we haven’t yet climbed the foothills two weeks into the new year, we get discouraged. We let that discouragement and disappointment cause us to “postpone” or completely quit. Our restart then sputters to a standstill. 

 We lack support and accountability. 

Everyone needs someone. We need the support and encouragement of our family and friends. But, many times, when it comes to resolutions or restarts, we travel the “lone wolf” route. This is especially true with men. We try to reboot our lives without a support system, when an accountability partner or encouragement would be beneficial. 

Tips to Keep Moving Forward with Starting New 

We have explored some reasons why our restarts can falter. Next, let’s look at some tips to keep moving forward with starting new. Remember, though, your situation is unique. It is beneficial for you to complete a truthful personal inventory and understand your strengths and shortcomings. 

Build and rely on a tribe.

Reach out for help and support. Even with a “small” reboot, depend on the encouragement of others. Work together with somebody toward your goals. Find an accountability partner who can ask you the tough questions and expect truthful answers. 

 Make a plan.

Very few victories come without a plan. Decide what you want to do, and map your way to that goal. Simple decisions can be abstract; when the path to victory is concrete in writing, the unachievable becomes achievable. 

 Small steps

They say that Rome wasn’t built in a day. You won’t accomplish your reboot in a day, either. Whether you want to organize your life or lose some weight, take it one achievable step at a time. Set an obtainable goal for yourself, hit it like a boss, and set another. 

 Never put off until tomorrow what you can do today.  

Stop procrastinating. You will never achieve what you want to do by waiting until next week. Schedule time into your day to work on your restart goals, and stick to that schedule.

Follow Jesus to the Restart of All Restarts 

There is one sure way to bring about change in your life. In the Bible, 2 Corinthians 5:17 states, “Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.” Jesus offers a restart to everyone. No matter who you are or what you have done, Jesus calls you to come to Him. 

 Why Do We Need Jesus? 

Why do we need Jesus, though? Do you remember that personal inventory we talked about before? If you were honest with yourself, you saw a lot of shortcomings and wrongdoings. It is true for all of us. The Bible calls it “sin.” And while God loves us, He is holy, which means He has no sin. In fact, He can’t be in the presence of sin. Our sinful actions have pushed us away from God, the relationship for which we were created. Not only that, but we face punishment for our sins, like a criminal in court. That punishment is physical death and spiritual death, separation from God for eternity in a place called Hell. There is nothing we could do ourselves to make amends to God, because our sin taints everything that we do. 

 Find Eternal Life Through Jesus for Starting New 

But God loves you so much that He made a way for you to justification and reconciliation. He gave His Son, Jesus, to take your place in punishment. Jesus shed His blood and died on a cross for your sins. He then resurrected from His grave three days later in victory over death. He paid your debt, and like in a court of law, there is no double jeopardy. There is no second punishment for the same crime.    Jesus now offers eternal life and a new restart to you. All that you have to do is believe in Him and ask Him to save you. In the Bible, John 3:16 states, “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”  

 Starting New in 2022 with a New Relationship with God 

You can have a relationship with God. It is possible through Jesus, and through Him alone. Pray and ask Jesus to forgive your sins and save you. It is not the exact words of the prayer that will save you; just mean it. Call out to Jesus. He waits and is listening. Do it now.    Changing your life is not a decision left for “tomorrow,” “next Monday,” or “the new year.” You may have followed your own way for years. Start new this year by following Jesus.  If you have decided to follow Jesus, contact us at The R.O.C.K. Club in Radford, VA. We want to help you in your new relationship with Jesus.   For more information on The R.O.C.K. Club’s Christ-centered childcare and educational programs, call us now at (540) 267-3000. Let us help you understand how you can have a real relationship with God through Jesus. Meeting Jesus and deciding to follow Him is the best method of “starting new”!