Sunday, March 11, 2012

Faithful Families Resources March 11 2012

Weekly Inspiration
Bringing up a family should be an adventure, not an anxious discipline in which everybody is constantly graded for performance.
~Milton R. Saperstein

Family Closeness
Gather some ordinary objects such as a paper clip, a pencil, a coin, a comb or brush. Place them throughout the room, hidden but in plain sight. In other words, camouflaged.  An example might be placing a blue comb leaning against a blue vase or a spoon next to a silver tray.  Give family members a list of the items.  They must not announce when they  find an item but simply note where it is. The first player to see all the items and correctly reveal them wins. Another way to play is to choose one object and have a family member hide it and then the rest of the family must seek it out.

Questions for stimulating discussion in your family.
  • Are you more like a desert or an ocean?
  • What is something you would find hard to live without?
  • Would you rather live in a place where it always rains or  where it never rains?

With your family read: John 3.14-21
Questions for Discussion:
  • Who is the Son of Man?
  • What do people receive by believing in him?
  • How much did God love the world? What did he give to show this love?

About the Bible Bit
This is a fairly heavy passage with lots of themes and images in it. The core of it is that Jesus came to give people life and freedom, and not to condemn them. Our response to Jesus and the light he brings is something we must think deeply about.

Journey through the Bible
Journey through the Bible will provide five readings each week you can use in order to get a good overview of the full sweep of the story of God and His people. There are a variety of ways you might use these readings. As a parent you might read them to get a better understanding of how the divine drama unfolds. You could read them to your children and discuss them. Some are longer than others and might need to be broken up. It is important that you read them first as some readings you may feel need to be read in a children’s version of the Bible.

John 1.1-18                             The Word becomes flesh
Luke 1.5-25                             John the Baptist birth foretold
Luke 1.26-38                           Birth of Jesus foretold
Luke 2.1-21                             The Birth of Jesus
Luke 3.1-20                             John the Baptist

Prayer and Celebration
Lenten Thanksgiving Bowl
This week place a bowl in the middle of your table. Place some blank strips of paper and a pen next to it. Each night spend some time writing things you would like to say thank you to God for. Place them in the bowl. Smaller children might like to draw pictures.

Prayers to use in Lent

Dear God,
thank you that your love
is deeper than the ocean
and bigger than the sky.
No matter what we do,
you still love us
and welcome us home.

Dear God
Help us when we hurt.
Help us to know what to do.
Help us forgive.

(Whole People of God. 2001)

Family Time
Lenten Placemats
Draw a variety of Lenten symbols on sheets of purple construction paper. These symbols could include a palm branch, a cross, a candle, a crown of thorns, a dove, a bowl, the number 40, loaf and cup, nails, a rooster, a bag of coins. In the middle of the placemat write a Lenten prayer. Cover them with a clear covering such as “contact”. As you eat meals together during Lent, look at each symbol and discuss its meaning.

(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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