People often ask the best way to encourage their children to begin reading the Bible independently. The first thing to do is to make sure your child has a Bible that is accurate, but still easy to understand. The best one I have found so far is the NIrV version. It’s written on a third grade reading level, but is a translation and not a paraphrase (which can be very inaccurate in my opinion). Until recently, it only came in covers appropriate for young children, but I noticed the last time I was in the bookstore it now comes in covers for adults and even has a student study version.
Once your child has a Bible he or she can read or understand, it is important to find a reading plan that will keep him or her engaged long enough to develop the habit of daily or at least regular Bible reading. I suggest first time Bible readers avoid starting in Genesis in an attempt to read straight through the Bible. They tend to get bogged down in the genealogies and laws and give up.
Continue reading Introducing Kids to Proverbs
Summer mornings in many households are much more relaxed than during the school year. Kids (and even parents on occasion!) may get to sleep a little later. Breakfast may be out on a deck or patio and eaten slowly while enjoying the beautiful weather. Many days may have no schedule at all, with family members playing outside, enjoying hobbies or reading fun books.
I want to encourage you this summer to take advantage of those relaxed mornings. Make a family devotional part of your new morning routine. Have breakfast outside or as an indoor picnic on a rainy day. Make it more than only reading some scriptures. Turn it into a godly adventure. Your adventure may last a few minutes or an entire day, but help your children understand the verses you read by helping them live it.
There are so many things you can do, but here are some ideas to get you started:
Continue reading Fun Summer Family Devotionals
With the constant barrage from media and social actions groups, caring for God’s creation has increasingly mixed secularism, politics and earth worship with what should be a thankfulness for God’s creation. Your children are probably participating in Earth Day activities this week at school or in scouts or some other activity. While most of the activities are innocent, sometimes the teachings that go with them point your children away from God.
Instead of rejecting Earth Day as a pagan holiday, why not use it as an opportunity to teach your children about praising God and good stewardship? Remind them of the story of creation. Tell them the stories when God used rivers, storms, animals and other parts of His creation to accomplish His will. Talk about how God wants us to be good stewards of all of His gifts to us – including the earth. Find ways for your family to regularly, care for God’s creation.
Continue reading Christian Kids and Earth Day
I always thought snuggling with your kids comes naturally to every parent and is done on an almost daily basis. Then last night, I heard a cop say that until he joined the force he didn’t realize some parents use the police to settle their arguments. It made him realize there are a lot of families who don’t understand how to parent in ways that are the healthiest for their children. I also realize many parents have the best of intentions, but let the busyness of life rob their kids of needed snuggle time.
Why do kids need snuggle time? Is it important enough to eliminate other activities or let some dishes go unwashed for a few more hours? I think it really is vital, for Christian parents especially, to snuggle with their kids. Here’s why:
Continue reading Why You Need to Snuggle With Your Kids Today
Chances are you grew up hearing stories from some older relative who made mud pies or dolls from sticks because they were poor. The Great Depression and World War II taught many of our grandparents and great-grandparents how to make something out of nothing. The relative prosperity in our lifetimes has eroded the skill set our ancestors had developed.
In my last post, I talked about the need for teaching our children to be good stewards of God’s world. One easy way to do that is to reduce the amount of things thrown into garbage dumps. There is a fun project you can do that will not only teach your children how to actively think about good stewardship but also give your kids some practice being creative and clean your house at the same time!
Continue reading Fun Way to Teach Kids Creative Recycling