Sunday, April 10, 2011

Faithful Families Resources April 11 2011

Weekly Inspiration

A child is not a vase to be filled, but a fire to be lit.
Fran├žois Rabelais

It’s not what you leave to your children, it’s what you leave in your children
Author Unknown


With your family read Matthew 21.1-11: Jesus enters Jerusalem

Questions for Discussion: 
  • What did Jesus ride on into the city?
  • What was the name of the city Jesus rode into?
  • What did the people put on the ground in front of Jesus?
  • Why do you think they did this?

Discuss with your family what was interesting about the story or what made you think. What did the story tell us about Jesus? Try using some “I wonders” that emerge from the story. (I wonder how Jesus felt? I wonder what was going on in this story?) 

Once upon a time, two weevils travelled from the farm to the big city to seek their fortune. Upon arriving, the first weevil got a job in the movies. As time went by, he moved to bigger and better movies until he became internationally renowned as a great movie star. The other weevil, however, was unable to find any employment and, as time passed, he faded into total obscurity. That was fifty years ago. But today, do you suppose anyone remembers that weevil who was once a great movie star? No! But we do remember the other one-the one who was a failure-for, even today, we refer to him as "the lesser of two weevils."

Prayer and Celebration

Try to connect what you do in worship on a Sunday with what you do to worship at home during the week. Here are some examples:

  • Regular attendance in worship might be linked with a regular pattern of prayer and worship at home. Praying with our children is a key way that we may be faithful with our family. (we regularly offer ways to pray with children in this email)
  • Break bread at home. Even if your children do not receive communion, break bread with them at home reminding them of the story of the last supper. Assure them that at home, when we break bread together it is different to church, but that we may break bread to remember Jesus. This may be linked with a meal time pattern of prayer.
  •  “What prayer do we take to church today?”  As a family, be conscious of the prayers and hopes you take to place before God in worship. Ask this question before you go to church. 

Throughout any year there are many days that are dedicated to different charities or issues in society. There are websites like the following  that list these days  that are occurring in your state, region or country. This can be used as a tool to broaden the horizon of your children about the many needs in the world and the ways people seek to address them.
  •  Look up what is happening in any particular week.
  • Explore the organisation that is sponsoring it or the issue behind it.
  • Pray as a family for the needs highlighted by the day or week, being celebrated and for the organisations working in the area.
  • Consider attending events or running your own to support a particular need.
  • Think about ways you might contribute or donate to make a difference. 

Family Closeness

One way to develop family closeness is to have an intentional family night. A pattern may be used such as this:

Story with Discussion/Questions

Using the resources provided above and below would enable you to have a family night once a week.


Blobtionary: Just like pictionary only using play doh. This can be played with two or more. Write twenty words down on a piece of paper and put them in a hat. The difficulty of the word will depend on the ages playing. One person picks out the word and has to make the ‘it’ using the play doh. The other person has to guess what word is being made. No speaking or gesturing to give hints is allowed. Words could include: Dog, Girl, Elephant, happy. Use your imagination. If four or more are playing then two teams can race to make the one word. 


Picture Sharing
Cut a picture from a magazine. How are you like someone in the picture? If you were in the scene pictured, what would you be saying, doing? What incident in your life does the picture remind you of?  Where would you rather be, in the picture or in a math’s class? What do you think about the picture? How are the people in the picture feeling?

Which are you like…why or how.
  • couch or a rocking chair
  • green or yellow
  • pizza or icecream
  • Saturday or Wednesday
  • an onion or an apple 

Bonus Family Activity

Many churches celebrate the coming Sunday (the Sunday before Easter) as Palm Sunday. On this day we remember Jesus entering Jerusalem on a donkey and people placing branches on the ground before him. This week why not make your own palm crosses at home as a way of helping your children remember the story.

Below is a link to a youtube video that will show you how to do it. There are many other websites online that will show you how to make them. 

Well, we hope you found these resources useful. Have a fantastic week  as you grow in loving and sharing with your family. May the joy and love and peace of Christ fill your home as we head towards Easter.

Stephen Harrison

(This material is based on and draws from earlier Faithful Families emails by Stephen Harrison & Richard Browning:  An Unless Ideas Production) 

Unless otherwise noted all material on this blog is copyright Stephen Harrison and Richard Browning

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