Day Three of Keeping Christ in Easter

Read here about Day Three of Passion Week.  Jesus had a busy day, having his authority challenged 4 different times and spending time teaching. In your personal reading, read
Mark 11 – 16 to become very familiar with the account of Jesus’ last week on earth.  Be prepared to tell some of the parables with enthusiasm.  Read to your children from their children’s Bible some of these stories that Jesus told.   Click here for children books about the parables by Arch Publications.  Click here for a good children’s Bible.


Jesus often taught in parables. Follow His example in teaching and use visuals or stories to get the point across:

Plant a seed as a visual to illustrate the death and resurrection of Jesus. Talk about when we put seeds in the ground we can’t see them anymore, but after awhile they will push their way out of the ground.  Just like when Jesus died and friends put him in the tomb, they couldn’t see Him anymore, but after three days, the first Easter morning, Jesus came out of the tomb alive! (marigolds or zinnias sprout within three days!)

Take a family walk and notice any new growth as you talk about the fact that Easter comes at springtime when seeds begin to sprout after being dead all winter.   The plants come out to praise God and remind us that Jesus is alive! (Psalm 145:10 All Your works shall praise You, O Lord,)

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Day Two of Keeping Christ in Easter

What happened on Day Two of Passion Week? Click to find out. Tell your children the events of this day some 2000 years ago.  You can be very animated as you tell of Jesus cleansing the temple because He loved God’s house so much and people were not respecting it.  Talk of ways to respect your church (keep it clean, don’t run inside, listen to your teachers, etc.)

Emphasize that your bodies are now the temple of God (1 Cor. 6:19) and we must take care of them.  Plan and prepare a healthy meal together and have a family exercise night. Research ways to have better nutrition. The Adventures of Junk Food Dude is an excellent book for children to learn about healthy food choices.

Make a cross out of twigs or craft sticks and keep it in a prominent place during the Easter season.  Point out that it is empty because Jesus didn’t stay on the cross or in the tomb . . . He is alive!!

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Day One (Palm Sunday) of Keeping Christ in Easter

Let your children enjoy the secular traditions of Easter, but be just as intentional in telling them about what Christ was doing that first Easter.

Read all about Palm Sunday at Day One of Passion Week. Tell the story with enthusiasm to your children.

Make palm leaves out of green construction paper or white paper and paint green.  Let children cut into the edges to make the leaves.

Act out the story:  use a stick horse or a broom as the donkey or even let dad be the donkey 🙂  Let one child be Jesus and as he rides into the city, the rest of the family can wave the leaves.

Have fun teaching the Greatest Story ever told this Passion Week!!  Follow Train Up The Child for information and ideas all week.

Here’s a great song to sing as you act out the story: https://youtu.be/Kht2SR8P0ko

 

 

 

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Spring is Here – Time to Praise the Lord

Spring-Tulips-yellow-and-red

The flowers are springing up,
and the time of singing birds has come,
even the cooing of turtledoves.
Song 2:12 

 In Matthew 6:25-34 , Jesus must have been enjoying spring time as He taught His friends about how much God loves them.  He noticed the birds flying around and said,  “Look at the birds! They aren’t worried about having enough to eat because God feeds them.  In the same way, you shouldn’t worry about what you will eat.  God will feed you too!”  Then Jesus picked up some flowers that were blooming and said, “These flowers don’t have to worry about what they will wear because God has beautifully clothed them.  You don’t need to worry about clothes either for God will make sure you have something to wear.”

I hope your main activity with your children during this season can be outside enjoying nature together. Share with them that the Bible says in Psalm 145:10 that all God’s works shall praise Him.

As yall observe the beauty of God’s creation, join with the flowers, trees, and birds in praising God.  Here’s some songs to sing as you do.

This one is an old recording, but you can get the idea, or better yet, you can make up your own:

 Now the Flowers Are Growing

And another about God’s Beautiful World:

http://youtu.be/AbWgeJOMQ4U

Isaiah 55:12 says the mountains and hills will burst into song, and the trees of the field will clap their hands! So even if we don’t praise the Lord, creation still will.  Here’s a song about this that was recorded for me and my children by a friend, Patti Bennett:

 The Rocks and Hills Will Cry Out

These next two are from children’s musicals when my children were small.  Yeah, I know they are dated, but give them a listen:

http://youtu.be/W8wFjhWztcw

http://youtu.be/HLsh3lwKv5c

Happy Spring!!!

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History of St Patrick’s Day (A Lesson in Forgiveness)

 

 

Did you or your children ever wonder why we celebrate St. Patrick’s Day?    I’m not sure what lies behind some of the traditions associated with the day, but the man that the holiday is named for has a story children need to hear.

Did you know Patrick isn’t Irish? About 385 years after Jesus lived, Patrick was born into a wealthy English family.  When he was 16 years old, he was kidnapped by Irish pirates and taken to Ireland as a slave where he worked as a shepherd.  During this time he was lonely and afraid; this caused him to turn to God with his whole heart and he began to experience the love of Jesus..  After about 6 years as a slave, Patrick escaped and returned to his home country where he began studying to be a priest.

However, he did not forget Ireland; he had a desire to go back one day and tell them about Jesus.  He did eventually return there as a missionary.  Isn’t that amazing that he would want to go back to the place where he had been enslaved and tell them of God’s love?  What an act of forgiveness! Eventually Patrick was called a saint by the Catholic Church because of his love and kindness to the people of Ireland.

So because Jesus loved Patrick, Patrick was able to love and forgive the people of Ireland and then he spent his life telling them about Jesus. Patrick died on March 17, 461 and now we celebrate St. Patrick’s Day each March 17.

Please make your children aware in the midst of the stories of leprechans and the various ways of observing the holiday, that the reason for the activities this week is because Jesus loved and cared for Patrick and then Patrick loved and care for the people who had wronged him.  It would be a good time to share these verses:

Ephes. 4:32     And be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, just as God in Christ forgave you.
John 15:12     This is My commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you.

It is believed that Patrick brought the shamrock plant to Ireland and used the three-leafed plant to illustrate the message of the Trinity. This would be a good time to teach about the Trinity.  Click here for help in sharing the concept with your children.  A good children’s book to illustrate the Trinity is 3 in 1: A Picture of God.

Go outside and look for clover and talk about the Trinity; be like St. Patrick teaching the Irish.

Order a shamrock craft at Apples for the Teacher.

Download a St. Patrick’s Day coloring page at Ministry-to-Children.com

Watch this 8 minute Veggie Tale story of St. Patrick: http://youtu.be/UociNQHztiY

 

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