Sunday, January 22, 2012

Faithful Families Resources January 22 2012

Weekly Inspiration
You don't choose your family. They are God's gift to you. As you are to them.
~ Desmond Tutu

Family Closeness
Pick ‘n’ Choose
This game goes around the table clockwise. Whoever is to start says two similar items for example “pizza and ice cream” (both foods). The next person has to say the thing they like better out of the two within three seconds or less. Then they get to say two things to the next person and so on around the table. The thing named could be anything – including animals, toys, tv shows, songs etc.

Questions for stimulating discussion in your family.
(In the next few weeks we are going to have a focus on parents answering some questions. No doubt when the weekly question is answered, children will have more questions. The question is asked of the child but the parent might need to answer.)
  • Do you know what your mother and father do for work?
  • Do you know how your family came to live in this country?
  • Do you know what your parents happiest memories of childhood are?

With your family read: Mark 1.21-28
Questions for Discussion:
(Some questions are best answered by parents – but older children may understand)
  • What amazed people about Jesus teaching in the synagogue?
  • What does it mean to teach with authority?
  • Who did the unclean spirit say Jesus was?
  • How did Jesus show he had authority over unclean spirits?

 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.

Ruth 1                                     Ruth’s loyalty to Naomi
Ruth 2                                     Ruth meets Boaz        
Ruth 3                                     Ruth and Boaz
Ruth 4                                     Boaz redeems Ruth
1 Samuel 1                              The Birth of Samuel

Prayer and Celebration
12 Types of Prayer
In his book ‘The hour that changes the world’, Dick Eastman outlines twelve different types of prayer . In this miniseries explore the many different types of prayer with your children.
1 Thessalonians 5.18 Give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.
Giving thanks to God is one of the most important types of prayer that we can engage children. Everything we have comes from God, from our life and breath, to our food and water. There are many ways that you might pray thanksgiving prayers with your family. At simplest go around the table saying all the things you wish to give thanks for. Try to see how many times you can go around. Remember to thank God for spiritual, material, physical and social gifts he has given us. This should include all the things that Jesus has done for us. Another more permanent way might be to write or draw the things you want to thank God for on post-it notes and stick them on a board or wall somewhere. This can be a great source of encouragement when things are down, remembering all that god has done for us.

Family Time
Family Fun Night
Having a family night is a fantastic and fun way to focus on your family growing together. What is a family night? It is simply putting aside one evening a week or a month or whatever regular interval suits you to do something together that everyone will enjoy. Make sure the dates you pick are in your diaries and give them the first priority – try to plan well ahead. Give each member a turn to plan the program for the evening. Make it a rule that there is to be no complaining or fidgeting and that everyone is to cooperate and participate. This is especially important for the younger children whose self esteem may be damaged by older children's comments. Don't forget to talk about the purpose of the family night. Two key purposes could be 1. To have fun together. (Family night should be the most anticipated night of the week) 2. To worship the Lord together. This is an opportunity for parents to model Christian devotion to their children. (The Big Book of Family Fun. Gwen Ellis.)

 (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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