Having Fun With Gardening, God and Your Kids

Having Fun With Gardening, God and Your Kids - Parenting Like HannahSpring is a wonderful time to have fun teaching your kids about God. His beautiful creation is blooming all around us. Trees and plants that looked dead, come to life with new greenery. The birds are louder as they call for mates or chirp warnings for nest builders.

Spring is also a great time to start a garden with your kids. The great news is you don’t even have to own land to garden with your children. There are a lot of great websites and books about container gardening and raising food from plants you grow in your house. (I found Indoor Edible Garden at Costco and it’s on Amazon for just a little more.)

As you plant seeds or tiny plants, care for them and wait for them to grow food, there are also lessons you can teach your kids about what God wants them to know. They don’t have to be formal lessons. Casual conversations as you plan and work often resonate better with children anyway.

So what are some of the lessons you can teach your kids while growing things?

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Fun Ways to Help Kids Become Great Listeners

Fun Ways to Help Kids Become Great Listeners - Parenting Like HannahHave you ever tried to tell someone something very important to you, only to realize they haven’t really paid attention to anything you have said? It’s incredibly frustrating, and causes many of us to avoid sharing with that person again in the future.

Or have you asked your kids to do something and realized they said, “Sure!” without even hearing what you actually asked? When it happens multiple times a day, it can make even the calmest parent want to scream.

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Helping Kids Learn How to Use Their Passions to Serve God

Helping Kids Learn How to Use Their Passions to Serve God - Parenting Like HannahWhat does your child absolutely love to talk about when he or she has the chance? Do your kids have a hobby that they participate in every free minute? Do they ask for supplies for an interest for every gift giving occasion? Chances are these are your child’s passions.

Now if you have had a child for very long, you have learned childhood is often about rapidly shifting interests and passions. Actually, that’s great because it is allowing your kids to experiment with lots of different possible gifts from God. Often, it’s not until they actually try something that they may find they have a talent for it.

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Fun Ways to Teach Kids Empathy

Fun Ways to Teach Kids Empathy - Parenting Like HannahIn Top Tips for Teaching Kids About Empathy, we shared some basic tips for teaching empathy. To really raise empathetic kids though, they need a lot of practice seeing the world in different ways. (This is in no way an attempt to water down God’s Truths, rather to understand relationship dynamics caused by different points of view.) Fortunately, there are a lot of fun things you can do to help your kids begin to develop an empathetic heart.

Here are a few of my favorites.

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Teaching Young People About Being the Hands and Feet of Jesus

Teaching Young People About Being the Hands and Feet of Jesus - Parenting Like Hannah

 

When I train mission teams, I usually ask them what their goals are for the experience. The most common answer is to “love them like Jesus”. To “be the hands and feet of Jesus” is really just another way of expressing the same idea. When pressed what those expressions look like in the “real life” mission experience, I have yet to have a young person be able to articulate what they need to actually do to fulfill what they consider their mandate. This is not only sad, but a bit scary. Undefined, those teens will believe they have “been the hands and feet of Jesus” no matter what they did or did not do.

Nick Vujicic attempts in his latest book Be the Hands and Feet to help readers understand in more practical terms what being “the hands and feet of Jesus” really means. Full disclosure – I am a huge Nick Vujicic fan. His way of viewing his disabilities through the lens of God and not man is not only refreshing, but I have personally witnessed the positive effect his message has on children with special needs and their families.

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