Mar 29, 2010

Easter activities- Palm Sunday

So, we usually start our Easter celebration by reviewing Jesus' death on the cross.  Palm Sunday is the Sunday before Easter, and we usually read the story of Jesus riding into Jerusalem on a donkey.  As an adult, I always thought, whoa, Jesus really had it rough, riding a stinky old donkey into town.  My son, on the other hand, thinks its really cool, and after all Jesus is the one who asked for the donkey in the first place.

This story really had important meaning in that people recognized Jesus as Lord, and they showed their reverence by using palm leaves

How do we show our reverence to Him?

So, after we read the story from the Bible (yes, it's great when your kids can finally read & comprehend somewhat on their own), Children's Ministry has some great ideas for Palm Sunday.  Our kids also did a reinactment at church where they walked in with palm leaves (homeade with hangers and pom poms), and placed them on the floor.  Then they sang some simple Easter songs.  You really don't have to be elaborate to create a great, memorable experience for children.

Talk to your (older)kids about reverence and respect.  So many young people have a false understanding of what these two words really mean.  What is the difference in respect and reverence?  How do we show respect to people in our lives (parents, pastor, friends, siblings, etc.)?  How do we show reverence to Jesus?  We need to place our own palm leaves in his path.  What are some ways we can accomplish that?  What symbolic representation does that story have, such as Jesus riding the donkey?  This is really a great story with many elements.

Sunday School Zone has a preschool lesson and some really neat printables that look fun!

If you're not real crafty (like me), and need an easy craft, DLTK is great!  They have a paper donkey craft that would be fun to color and cut out and add to a lapbook or refrigerator door.  They also have a palm tree leaf craft.  Oriental Trading also has some really neat palm tree stuff.

We will be starting a lapbook for Easter, so we may add in a few things about the triumpal entry, but the focus will be on Jesus' death and resurrection.  Hopefully, I'll get some pics on when we get it done.  It seems to take us a while to finish lapbooks, but definitely worth the time!

Mar 28, 2010

How do your kids remember Easter?

    As a parent, I have resolved that my number one goal is to train my children to love the Lord with all their heart, soul, and might.  In this world, we find ourselves constantly making decisions about the things we choose to let our children be exposed to, including television shows, games, books, and even friends.  These decisions are not always easy.

    As a Christian, Easter has a very special place in my heart.  Easter is a celebration of Christianity, and the very core of our religion, which is Jesus' death, burial, and resurrection. I want my children to recognize this as the most sacred of holidays, but I have been struggling with how to accomplish that. 

 We made the decision long ago, that our Easter celebration would not include eggs, bunnies, or lavish presents.  Not that there's anything Biblically wrong with eggs, bunnies, or lavish presents, but it is the context in which we use them.  What do your children say when asked what Easter is about?  If eggs and bunnies are a part of your celebration, that usually wins out in their minds over the cross and Jesus.  

 It's easy to use the excuse, there's no harm in it, but we really should be saying, how does it affect my children's life in Christ?

So, we will not be hunting eggs, at least not on Easter. 

Thanks for listening,

Mar 16, 2010

Public Education

Things your child will NOT get in a public school:
  1. One on one learning
  2. Biblical worldview
  3. Exposure to God's Word
  4. Curriculum tailored to your child's needs, as opposed to government standards
  5. High expectations for learning
  6. Friendly, comfortable environment
Things your child WILL get in a public school:
  1. One teacher per 16-25 students (this will only get worse as budgets are cut)
  2. Socialistic worldview, anti-democracy
  3. Exposure to sex, drugs, bad language, and alternative lifestyles
  4. Discipline for "distractions" such as carrying a Bible to school or praying
  5. Low standards of education based on grade level expectations set by the government
  6. The world's standards supercede God's standards (clothes, hairstyles, communication, etc.)
Need more?  Not me.