Category Archives for "Faith"

This week's challenge is about showing kindness to our community. We'll explore some simple ways we can show our community kindness (with kindness activities, family discussion questions, Bible verses, and more). Join us for the Your Vibrant Family 30 Day Kindness Challenge and let's spread kindness to those in our community! #YVF30DayRandomActsofKindnessChallenge

30 Days of Kindness Challenge (Week 2 of 5): Kindness to Our Community

Welcome to Week 2 of the Your Vibrant Family 30 Day Random Acts of Kindness Challenge!

This week’s challenge is about showing kindness to our community. We’ll explore some simple ways we can show our community kindness (with kindness activities, family discussion questions, Bible verses, and more).

Join us and let’s spread kindness to those in our community!

This week's challenge is about showing kindness to our community. We'll explore some simple ways we can show our community kindness (with kindness activities, family discussion questions, Bible verses, and more). Join us for the Your Vibrant Family 30 Day Kindness Challenge and let's spread kindness to those in our community! #YVF30DayRandomActsofKindnessChallenge

Just joining us? Awesome!  Go here for more info about the Your Vibrant Family 30 Day Kindness Challenge!

Go here for the Week 1 30 Day Kindness Challenge post (Kindness to Family).

Our Week 1 Kindness Challenge Results

How did last week go for you? What did you and your family learn about the effects of small acts of kindness in the family?

Over and over, I watched my kids be changed by their choice to be kind. 

There were comments like this one from my 11-year-old: “Mom, I really loved your message for me on the ‘Kind Pages.’”

And from my 13-year old: “This was this first time I really understood how good it feels to give and get kindness.” Huge stuff for him!

We had some incredible conversations around kindness (love it when the Holy Spirit takes over and we end up dissecting a verse in ways I never expected).

Vibrant Homeschooling's 30 Days of Kindness Challenge: Writing Activities, Ideas, Scriptures and More! [VibrantHomeschooling.com]

Note the lovely—but un-eraseable—marks on the board. Please tell me you also have a four-year-old who loves experimenting with a Sharpie around the house.

Week 1 Kindness Jar Results

We used the kindness jar a little differently than we’d planned.

Every day the kids started with all the beans in one jar. If someone was unkind, we moved a bean to the other “unkind” jar. They then had to work as a team to do a kind act to get the bean back into the “kind” jar again before they could have free time.

This worked like a charm.

If someone was unkind and I had to move a bean to the “unkind” jar, I was touched at how quickly they worked together to get that naughty little bean back in the right jar.

They did everything from sharing pencils, to helping each other with chores, to just offering unusual amounts of grace to someone that was having a bad day.

And one day (after a day of lots of naughty little beans), I came home to find this:

(COLLAGE OF PHOTOS OF WHAT THEY DID THAT DAY)

Yep, they’d completely cleaned up the house. Without any prompting from me. And they worked together to do it!

To me, that’s real kindness in action. It’s kindness being integrated into the everyday trials and annoyances that just happen in families.

This is what I’m praying carries over to this week! And beyond!

Week 2: February 8-14

Kindness to Our Community

Kindness Goal for the Week: 

To continue talking about kindness and why it’s important; to discover how we can unite with other family members and friends to show kindness to our immediate community; to continue to experience how good it feels to both get and give kindness (“honey”); to continue to build habits of kindness in our everyday family interactions.

Family Discussion Time About Kindness:

  • Explain the 30 Days to Kindness Challenge and some of the ways you may be participating this month.
  • If there has been some hurt and resentment between family members, you may want to offer an opportunity for anyone to apologize for past actions (sometimes this is easier if the parents lead the way by apologizing for a recent action or attitude).
  • Ask each other—how can I be more kind to you with my words, tone and body language (again, parents lead this and listen)? 

Suggested Kindness Activities: 

Remember, these are just suggestions. Check out the 67 Awesome Random Acts of Kindness Ideas for Kids post for more ideas.

Activity #1: Hand out flowers to strangers (such as in front of a grocery store).

Step 1: Purchase flowers or trim some from your garden.

Vibrant Homeschooling's 30 Days of Kindness Challenge: Writing Activities, Ideas, Scriptures and More! [VibrantHomeschooling.com]

            Step 2: Trim a 12 x 12 piece of cardstock into small notecards and have the kids write simple messages on them (brainstorm a few ideas with the kids such as “You are special,” “You are appreciated,” “Have a wonderful day,” “God loves you,” etc).

Vibrant Homeschooling's 30 Days of Kindness Challenge: Writing Activities, Ideas, Scriptures and More! [VibrantHomeschooling.com]

Step 3: Gather your supplies: flowers, scissors, hole punch and wrapping paper ribbon.

30 Days of Kindness Challenge (Week 2 of 5): Writing/Discussion Activities, Ideas, Scriptures and More! [VibrantHomeschooling.com]

Step 4: Once the notecards are written, hole punch the top left corner of the notecard and string a piece of the ribbon through it. Wrap it around the stem twice and tie a knot. 

Vibrant Homeschooling's 30 Days of Kindness Challenge: Writing Activities, Ideas, Scriptures and More! [VibrantHomeschooling.com]

Step 5: Gather each person’s flowers/cards into the leftover plastic sack that the flowers were packaged in (Note: Plan ahead and get one sack per person when you’re grabbing the flowers). If you’ve gathered flowers from home, a rolled up piece of newspaper would also work nicely.

Vibrant Homeschooling's 30 Days of Kindness Challenge: Writing Activities, Ideas, Scriptures and More! [VibrantHomeschooling.com]

               Step 6: If you are a Christian, pray over each flower, asking God to bring people that really need an acts of kindness or encouraging word today.

               Step 7: Hand out the flowers! (Note: If you choose to hand them out in a privately owned location such as a grocery store, be sure to ask permission from the store management.)

30 Days of Kindness Challenge (Week 2 of 5): Writing/Discussion Activities, Ideas, Scriptures and More! [VibrantHomeschooling.com]

Activity #2: Write a letter (or draw a picture) for your local police, firefighter or military personnel and hand-deliver it. 

Check out these awesome free printables from Seusstastic Classroom Inspirations.  They are perfect for this activity!

You could also include cookies or other treats if you’d like.

Activity #3: Prepare and deliver meals to those in your community that are home-bound, dealing with ongoing illness or tragedy, or just need to know that they are loved.

30 Days of Kindness Challenge (Week 1 of 5): Writing Activities, Ideas, Scriptures and More! [VibrantHomeschooling.com]

Churches, local food pantries or perhaps even assisted living facilities may be able to link you up with those in need.

We are working with a group of homeschool families to provide meals for a local homeless soup kitchen for the evening (the kids are making the food!).

Or, who wouldn’t like a whole bunch of freezer meals made for them? Freezer meals are especially appreciated by moms about to give birth or those anticipating an upcoming surgery or other difficult life situation. Here’s a post I did on how to make up several freezer meals in bulk.

30 Days of Kindness Challenge (Week 2 of 5): Writing Activities, Ideas, Scriptures and More! [VibrantHomeschooling.com]

The world’s easiest-to-assemble freezer meal: Make a stir fry with pre-packaged chicken breasts, sliced bell peppers, broccoli, onions, a jar of teriyaki sauce and pre-cooked rice.

Activity #4: Kindness Jar

This is the same activity we started last week. Let’s continue to build the habit of kindness to our family members!

Kindness Write, Discuss or Draw Topics

  • What were your favorite “moments of kindness” from last week?
  • Explain how it made you feel to receive kindness. How did the kindness you got from others brighten your day, improve your attitude or reshape how you handled a difficult situation?
  • Share how it make you feel to give kindness. If it felt good to give kindness, was this surprising? If so, how? Did it make you want to give more kindness?
  • What are some ways that God calls us to be kind in our community?
  • Why do you think it’s especially important for Christians to show kindness to our community?

Kindness Bible Verses to Write, Discuss or Draw

Of course these aren’t the only ones on this topic. These are just the ones we’re going to talk through this week—one for each day of the school week. All references are in the NLT.

Titus 3:1: Remind the believers to submit to the government and its officers. They should be obedient, always ready to do what is good. They must not slander anyone and must avoid quarreling. Instead, they should be gentle and show true humility to everyone.

1 Kings 3:9: (can be a prayer for our government leaders): Give me an understanding heart so that I can govern your people well and know the difference between right and wrong. For who by himself is able to govern this great people of yours?

James 1:27: Pure and genuine religion in the sight of God the Father means caring for orphans and widows in their distress and refusing to let the world corrupt you.

Deuteronomy 24:19: When you are harvesting your crops and forget to bring in a bundle of grain from your field, don’t go back to get it. Leave it for the foreigners, orphans, and widows. Then the Lord your God will bless you in all you do.

Psalm 68:5: Father to the fatherless, defender of widows— this is God, whose dwelling is holy.

This Week’s Kindness Resources

Disclaimer: My family and may or may not have personally used all of these resources.

I have these and other “kindness project” resources on this Pinterest board.

325-x-475-67-Random-Acts-of-Kindness-Ideas-for-KidsNEW POST: 67 Awesome Random Acts of Kindness Ideas for Kids by Your Vibrant Family

25 Ways to Encourage by Pickle Bums

Ideas to Help Families That Really Need It by Rants from Mommyland

Recipe List by Take Them A Meal

“Survival Kit for Police” by Gifts U Can Make

More Blank Thank You Letters for Firefighters, Police Officers and Soldiers from Erica’s Ed-Ventures

Tell Us About Your Kindness Acts!

  • Invite Others. Share this post on your own FB page, Twitter feed, Pinterest page (or whatever social media you enjoy) and invite others to join us! Don’t forget to use the hashtag #YVF30DayKindnessChallenge!
  • Share Ideas! If you have other kindness ideas, resources or Bible verses that can encourage others, please share them in the comments below!

I can’t wait to see all the beauty that will come from a deliberate focus on kindness to our community! I look forward to hearing your stories this week!

Life is hard, and we all struggle with joy from time to time. Here are 18 Bible verses about joy that will fill your soul in new and wonderful ways! Discover how it is possible to have lasting joy in any circumstance!

18 Bible Verses About Joy

On those days when mothering or homeschooling is especially hard, I find myself asking (alright, begging!) God to show me a sliver of joy.

And when I can take a few moments to think through some Bible verses about joy, I feel God’s presence encouraging me, telling me yes, you can keep going… yes, things will be alright.

It’s not that my life suddenly becomes perfect, but a beautiful undercurrent of peace and trust begins to flow. This simple trust leads to a deep abiding joy that cannot be shaken.

Friend, I want to share with you 18 of my favorite bible verses on joy so that you can discover this unshakeable biblical joy too.

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How Biblical Joy Brings the Right Perspective

First things first: joy isn’t the same thing as happiness. And that truth is present in each of the Bible scriptures on joy mentioned below.

As we study each of the Bible stories in these verses, we discover that biblical joy has nothing to do with the state of our circumstances, but instead with our choice in how we want to view the situation.

As you and I move through our (very imperfect) lives today, let’s ask ourselves these three questions in order to discover that unshakeable joy of God:

1) What new perspective does he want me to take on the situation? 

2) How does He want to encourage me to grow in new areas through what I’m experiencing? 

3) How can this situation be used (either right now or in the future) as an encouragement to others (2 Corinthians 1)?

When I challenge myself with these questions (and am reminded again of the deep, truly bottomless love of God), my soul settles a little further into the unexplainable mystery of God’s rich love, peace and joy.

Let’s Experience Deeper Joy Together

Before we get to the scriptures, I want to invite you to experience deeper joy and spiritual renewal this Spring… in only a few minutes a day with an awesome new Bible study, devotional and journal!

Check out the exciting Christ-Centered Easter Women’s Resources!

Sometimes it seems downright impossible to get any time to grow spiritually and find joy. But I designed these resources for busy moms like you and me.

 

 

By spending only 5 to 10 minutes a day with God, you’ll get back the joy you crave and rediscover true hope! Really!

P.S. These women’s resources really are about discover spiritual renewal, hope and joy. So really, they can be used year-round (not just at Easter!)

 

If you’re ready for authentic joy that comes from simple, quiet moments with Godmoments you and I desperately need—then this the perfect resource for you!

Best of all, if you purchase these resources before March 21, you get a free bonus–access to a Private Facebook Group where I’ll be going through the study LIVE with women from all over the world!

Please join us! We’d love to have you.

 

 

18 Scripture Verses on Joy in the Bible

Joy is found where God is:

“Oh, the joys of those who do not follow the advice of the wicked, or stand around with sinners, or join in with mockers.But they delight in the law of the Lord, meditating on it day and night. They are like trees planted along the riverbank, bearing fruit each season. Their leaves never wither, and they prosper in all they do.” Psalm 1:1-3

“You make known to me the path of life; you will fill me with joy in your presence, with eternal pleasures at your right hand.” Psalm 16:11

“Honor and majesty surround him; strength and joy fill his dwelling.” 1 Chronicles 16:27

Joy is found when we follow God’s truth:

“The commandments of the Lord are right, bringing joy to the heart. The commands of the Lord are clear, giving insight for living.” Psalm 19:8

“Joyful are people of integrity, who follow the instructions of the Lord. Joyful are those who obey his laws and search for him with all their hearts. They do not compromise with evil, and they walk only in his paths.” Psalm 119:1-3

“Your regulations remain true to this day, for everything serves your plans. If your instructions hadn’t sustained me with joy, I would have died in my misery. I will never forget your commandments, for by them you give me life. Psalm 119:91-93

“Those who listen to instruction will prosper; those who trust the Lord will be joyful.” Proverbs 16:20

Joy results when we trust God and lean on Him for strength:

“The Lord is my strength and shield. I trust him with all my heart. He helps me, and my heart is filled with joy. I burst out in songs of thanksgiving.” Psalm 28:7

“Those who look to him for help will be radiant with joy; no shadow of shame will darken their faces.” Psalm 34:5

“Those who plant in tears will harvest with shouts of joy.” Psalm 126:5

(Personification of Wisdom speaking) “And so, my children, listen to me, for all who follow my ways are joyful. Listen to my instruction and be wise. Don’t ignore it. Joyful are those who listen to me, watching for me daily at my gates, waiting for me outside my home! For whoever finds me finds life and receives favor from the Lord.” Proverbs 8:32-35

Joy is a valuable gift of God: 

“You have given me greater joy than those who have abundant harvests of grain and new wine.” Psalm 4:7

“I pray that God, the source of hope, will fill you completely with joy and peace because you trust in him. Then you will overflow with confident hope through the power of the Holy Spirit.” Romans 15:13

Joy can change our difficult circumstances into blessed ones:

“Dear brothers and sisters, when troubles come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy. For you know that when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow. So let it grow, for when your endurance is fully developed, you will be perfect and complete, needing nothing.” James 1:2-4

“Our hearts ache, but we always have joy. We are poor, but we give spiritual riches to others. We own nothing, and yet we have everything.” 2 Corinthians 6:10

“Now I want you to know, dear brothers and sisters, what God in his kindness has done through the churches in Macedonia. They are being tested by many troubles, and they are very poor. But they are also filled with abundant joy, which has overflowed in rich generosity.” 2 Corinthians 8:1-3

“We ask God to give you complete knowledge of his will and to give you spiritual wisdom and understanding. Then the way you live will always honor and please the Lord, and your lives will produce every kind of good fruit. All the while, you will grow as you learn to know God better and better. We also pray that you will be strengthened with all his glorious power so you will have all the endurance and patience you need. May you be filled with joy, always thanking the Father.” Colossians 1:9-12

“And let us run with endurance the race God has set before us. We do this by keeping our eyes on Jesus, the champion who initiates and perfects our faith. Because of the joy awaiting him, he endured the cross, disregarding its shame. Now he is seated in the place of honor beside God’s throne. Think of all the hostility he endured from sinful people; then you won’t become weary and give up.” Hebrews 12:1-2

Scripture quotations are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright ©1996, 2004, 2007 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.

Discovering the Joy of God iAs homeschoolers, we all struggle with joy from time to time. Here are 18 bible verses about joy that will fill your soul in new and wonderful ways!n Any Situation

I am so grateful that God has left us with encouraging words–His words–about the lasting joy. I cling to these scriptural truths when I am need of soul replenishment.They remind me that my situation has less to do with what’s happening, than with what He can do through it.

They also remind me that staying absolutely close to Him during this time–through confession, pouring my heart to Him and filling my mind with his promises–are critical aspects to a joy-filled life.

Call upon His name today, and let these bible verses about joy fill your soul in new and wonderful ways!

Additional Posts on Finding Lasting Joy:

4 Ways “Acceptance with Joy” Will Change Your Life Today

8 Ways to Stay Emotionally Replenished in Every Mothering Season

Discovering Joy Through Trials: 3 Must-Have Mindsets

 

And don’t forget to check out the awesome Women’s Bible Study I mentioned before!

Even though it’s Easter-themed, this is a women’s study you can do anytime you want refreshment and true joy!

 

 

chronic illness marriage

When Chronic Illness Invades Your Marriage

Today I will walk into the ICU at our local hospital and visit my hero, my beloved husband. For the third day in a row, I will hold his hand, offer a smile and maybe give a shoulder massage–something to comfort him during this health scare.

We are both still reeling from the diagnosis (really? how can this be happening?) and fearful of walking the road of chronic illness. 

But, as I stare into his beautiful blue eyes today, I’m wanting to tell him that I’m here for him. Always.

And as we pray quietly by his hospital bed (as we’ve done each day before I must leave him again), I’ll pray that he understands that when I said “in sickness and in health” thirteen years ago I really meant it.

With trembling knees, I’ll do my heartfelt best to tell him that we’ll walk this unknown road of long term illness together.

When-Chronic-Illness-Invades-Your-Marriage

**This story was originally published in July 2013. I’ve decided to re-share this post now because I want to encourage those of you who are facing chronic illness in your family.

Long Term Illness Has Disrupted Our World

I have a t-shirt that reads “My Husband, My Hero.” I wear it on days that he or I need a visual reminder that, yes, he is and always will be my champion, my best friend, my sweet confidante… the one God handpicked just for me out of every other person in the world.

I am wearing it today.

And like the other days before, the rhythmic pattern of the heart monitor, and the multitude of tubes and wires protruding from his arms and chest will remind me again that, yes, our little world has been greatly disrupted, and that things are far from normal.

An uninvited guest named life-long illness has pushed its way into the door of our lives, boldly taken up residence and rudely demanded that we adjust accordingly.  

But today’s routine will be a little different. Today he is being released from the hospital. Today we will be handed the keys to our new life.

Our New Life with Chronic Illness

Three short days ago we were given the news: along with miraculously being spared from some truly awful conditions (including coma and death), my husband was diagnosed with Diabetic Ketoacidosis (DKA), and with Type 1 (Juvenile) Diabetes.

It was a shocking diagnosis, to say the least, especially since my husband is in fairly good health and we eat a (mainly) plant-based diet.

So, along with nursing him out of his critical state, the hospital staff has spent the last few days introducing us to what will now be our new normal:

  • Carb counts for everything that goes in his mouth.
  • A diet that restricts (or severely limits) certain foods.
  • Insulin injections four times a day.
  • Blood glucose level monitoring six times a day.
  • A slew of (regularly scheduled) appointments with various specialists.
  • Classes on lifestyle management.
  • A special medical identification bracelet to wear.
  • The wonderfully tasty world of glucose tabs and gels.
  • New guidelines for air travel.
  • Health signs to watch for–daily. And the list goes on and on.

Today the at-home-care process will begin. And thus, so will a new chapter in our marriage.

In Sickness and In Health

My Facebook post yesterday was simple: “…for better, for worse; for richer, for poorer; in sickness and in health; to love and to cherish; ‘till death do us part.”

My heart still chokes just reading those words, knowing how heartfelt they were.

I didn’t expound on the “whys” I’d posted the traditional marriage vows. Those who were closest to us and knew our situation understood the reasons behind the post, and simply posted comments like “praying for you guys.”

This whole experience has highlighted for me two distinct ways couples approach their marriage relationship.

One way is to think of marriage as being glorified housemates: you share your thoughts and feelings together (and decide together how to run the home) but there still is a sense of independence… a feeling of “this is mine, and that is yours” so that when hard times come, that separation between “yours” and “mine” becomes more distinct. It’s as if the two of you say you will work together as a team through it, but in reality, you approach it as if it’s still “your issue” or “my issue.”

In contrast, another way to approach marriage is to fully embrace the other’s issues, truly considering that their “issues” are truly your issues to tackle. For example, there is no such thing as “his medical condition”; it becomes “both of your medical condition” because you are handling it together.

To me this is far more natural and God’s true intention for marriage. What good is marriage, unless you have truly agreed to embrace each other’s scars and ugliness as if they were your own, and have determined to work together as one mind to fully help one another?

Two Are Better Than One (Especially During Difficult Times)

Speaking from a practical sense, Ecclesiastes 4:9 describes this by saying, “Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their labor.” Yes, we are more successful when we tackle a difficult road like chronic illness together.

chronic illness marriage

A few verses later, Ecc 4:12 states, “Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves. A cord of three strands is not quickly broken.” This verse too makes me grateful for the marriage bond because in those moments when we are defeated and downtrodden, God designed it so that our spouse can steady his or her shoulders and defend both of us against attack.

I also love this verse because it reminds me that we don’t have to be that “strong cord” on our own in our marriages—that the foundation of our love (and of our lives!) is not each other, but something much, much bigger and completely trustworthy and unchanging. That wonderful “third cord” is our loving Heavenly Father, and He will be the one ultimately empowering us to stay strong through the storm.

Two of us “strands”(even if we are holding on tightly to each other) might snap in the harsh winds of life. But as a strand of three—as the tiny threads wrapped together around God’s huge, thick cord of heavy rope–we are not easily broken. Hallelujah!

Do our actions show this? Do we really embrace—fully, totally and completely embrace—our spouse (and God) in this way?

How to Help A Spouse Living with Chronic Illness

One of my biggest struggles through this process has been how to help him. It is so difficult to see your beloved suffering and in both emotional and physical pain, and to feel like there’s little you can do for them.

So I have begun brainstorming practical ways that I can be involved in this burden for my sweet husband. Thankfully, I am learning that there is a lot I can do.

First and foremost, everything our family does needs to encourage a healthy lifestyle for him. My goal is to create a home environment that encourages him in this lifestyle and to not make things harder for him. So at least for a long while, my food choices and activity levels will be very similar to his. It’s the absolute least I can do to embrace “my” part of “our” disease.

Physically, I can help him with making appointments, picking up prescriptions and gathering information from other health professionals. I can help him with his food choices and have foods available to him in our home that will help his body heal. I can also research new recipes, talk to others who live with this condition, and give him the nutritional information about the food he eats.

Emotionally, I can give him a smile and a hug when he needs it. I can do my best to maintain a simple yet pleasant home environment that refuels and encourages him on those rough days. I can just be there for him if he wants to talk or process things.

Spiritually, I can daily (or hourly, if need be) lift him up to our Father and intercede on his behalf. I can pray that his wife (yep, that’s me!) will not be selfish or quick to complain. I can savor the blessings in this situation (and in our life in general) and then bHow can your #marriage weather life's biggest changes, such as #long term illness? |christian marriage | spouse illness | hard times | vibranthomeschooling.come an example of this to our children.

Wow… deep exhale. There really is so much that I can do for him. I can truly help him carry this terribly heavy burden. Just the thought of that makes my heart sing.

As I type this, I’m dedicating my own sinful heart to this new part of the calling I’ve been given as his wife.

Lord, give me the strength to do these things. Please show me even more ways I can carry my part of the burden. And may my actions all be used to point others to You.

 

Other Posts on Marriage:

The Surprising Secret to Better Sex for Christians

chronic illness marriage

 

How to Keep a Strong Marriage While Homeschooling

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Your Turn:

Do you view marriage as a “strand of three cords, not easily broken”? How have you and your spouse tackled tough issues like these? I would love to hear your stories so that we can be mutually encouraged.

 

Wow... now THIS is an important post. How can we teach kids about news and current events without telling them too much? Some great ideas and resources here. Must-read for all moms!

6 Tips for Teaching Kids About Current Events

As parents, we’re given the amazing privilege of introducing our kids to the world.

Now that’s a mighty job, especially as we read frightening news headlines everyday. How can we teach kids about news and current events (without sharing too much)?

Although we show discernment in how and when we discuss difficult matters, I firmly believe we need to be talking to our kids about current events–regularly and from a young age.

But how can this happen? Read on to discover six helpful tips (plus some awesome resources) to help us keep our kids informed about world events.

 

Wow... now THIS is an important post. How can we teach kids about news and current events without telling them too much? Some great ideas and resources here. Must-read for all moms!

I believe six elements are critical for success when sharing about current events: 

1) Provide quality, informative resources.

2) Share a little at a time from the youngest age.

3) Listen to God’s leading on how and when to share more.

4) Share the good and the bad.

5) Layer information and help kids connect the dots.

6) Encourage discussion (and stay open to ongoing questions).

Let’s look at each of those, and discover how we can personalize these methods to fit our individual families.

#1: Provide Quality Informative Resources

I have long admired WORLD Magazine for their ability to intelligently discuss current events–everything from politics to changes in culture to the latest in television and the arts.

While I’m grateful for publications like WORLD that keep me informed as an adult, I’m immeasurably blessed by WORLD’s offerings for kids and teens.

news kids current events

These three publications–God’s Big WORLD (for preschoolers), WORLDkids (for elementary-aged kids), and WORLDteen (for ages 11-14)–are incredible resources that teach kids about current events within a biblical framework.

 #2: Share a Little at a Time from the Youngest Age.

Each bi-monthly issue of God’s Big WORLD, WORLDkids and WORLDteen give relevant age-appropriate content within a Christian worldview.

They can be exposed to relevant news content that’s designed to inspire, to inform and to challenge… a little at a time.

This means that kids can start thinking outside their four walls from the earliest age.

They can learn–from the start–that there’s a big world out there and that it’s not all about me.

Now that’s an important lesson, don’t you think?

#3: Listen to God’s leading on how and when to share more.

There’s an immense tension when considering how to share with kids about current events–How much? How soon? There’s also an overarching fear: How do I preserve their innocence without keeping them in a bubble?

Only the Holy Spirit can best answer these questions, and we must trust Him to give us that insight for each child.

I appreciate that the WORLD publications have considered this in the editorial structure of their magazines. As kids get older (and move from one publication to the next) the content becomes a little less “sugar-coated” and kids are slowly introduced to more hard-hitting topics. Should parents want to explore the topic further with their kids, each issue of WORLDkids and WORLDteen has additional digital content.

On WORLDteen online, teen readers can even comment on article topics and share their insights with other teens (all within a safe, closed network).

And speaking of safety, all digital content on the sites are self-contained, meaning that kids can interact with all the content without leaving the page to go to another site, such as YouTube. This was huge for me since internet safety is a big deal in our home.

And of course, parents can choose which magazine is the best fit for their child’s unique emotional, intellectual and social level–regardless of the magazine’s target age. For example, I knew immediately that my overly mature 11-year-old son would relate much more to the content in WORLDteen instead of WORLDkids (made for kids ages 11-14), even though the same would not have been true of my 13-year-old son when he was eleven.

#4: Share the good and the bad.

What are some amazing new inventions that are changing our world? What wonderful stories of sacrifice and beauty are going on right under our noses? And what new facts about God’s amazing creation are being discovered daily?

Good news is happening and it can be inspirational!

In fact, just today at lunch, my eleven-year-old was telling our family about the amazing article he’d read earlier in the November/December issue of WORLDteen called “Hands for Zion.” This amazing story tells of eight-year-old Zion Harvey, a hand and foot amputee, who recently underwent a hand transplant surgery! Not only does the two-page spread tell the backstory of how Zion lost his hands, feet and kidneys, it gives an illustrated account of how doctors performed this remarkable procedure.

news kids current events

It doesn’t mean that the kid-focused WORLD publications don’t talk about hard news (natural disasters, war, and politics, for example) but they are careful to soften these stories a bit (depending on the age group and the sensitivity of the topic) as compared to what would normally be in the adult publication.

#5: Layer information and help kids connect the dots.

This is where I think the WORLD publications really shine because, month after month, kids are exposed to high quality reporting about interesting, timely information in ways they find engaging.

news kids current events

 

That interaction starts from a preschool age with God’s Big WORLD. Published bi-monthly, God’s Big WORLD is divided into eight individual magazines (each one with short stories, along with a handful of puzzles and games) that make learning fun and informative. Like the rest of the WORLD publications, scripture is woven throughout so that kids can see how God’s truth applies to each topic.

news kids current events

Next, WORLDkids applies some real-world context to the topics presented in God’s Big WORLD. Kids are beginning to ask “why” and “how” at this age, and WORLDkids presents a slightly deeper look at current events. For example, the headline on the November/December 2015 cover is “Waves of Refugees and Migrants Keep Arriving.” The magazine also is formatted to look like a traditional news magazine with a table of contents, news shorts and longer featured articles. Colorful images and drawings (and a few quizzes and puzzles or games) are woven throughout.

news kids current events

WORLDteen takes learning about these current events one step further. For example, the European migrant crisis is headlined in the Table of Contents as “Refugees, Migrants, Hard Choices.” Interesting discoveries (“The Machines Have Ears”) and fascinating articles about the natural world (“Catering to Wild Cats”) fill the pages of this bi-monthly publication. And as mentioned before, teens can go online to learn more in-depth about each topic and sound off with their peers.

#6: Encourage discussion (and stay open to ongoing questions).

News is continually happening and our world is always in a state of change. The beauty of experiencing news together through these age-targeted news publications is that families can discuss world events as a group.

We can share news stories, relate them to our own lives, and challenge each other to consider what God’s word says about the situation.

And just like that, news goes from being something “someone else” is experiencing to being a personal invitation to ask God, “How can I play a role in your plan for this situation?”

Whether that answer is prayer, finances or front-line involvement, this is how we can teach our kids that yes, current events matter and that our lives can have an impact on those events.

Little by little, this is how we raise the world-changers our culture desperately needs!

Special Savings on WORLD for Your Vibrant Family Readers

WORLD product subscriptions can be purchased individually or are discounted when purchased in combination together as a family membership.

Plus, WORLD has graciously shared two exclusive deals for Your Vibrant Family readers!

YVF readers can take 15% off any kids-focused WORLD publication by clicking here (no code necessary!).

You can also receive a 3 month (6 issues) free trial to WORLD magazine here.

If you’re interested in raising kids who are culturally savvy, I highly encourage that you learn more about these awesome publications!

FTC Disclosure: I received products from WORLD News Group and was compensated for my time. However, all opinions stated here are 100 percent mine, and I was not required to post a positive review. 

Don’t miss these other posts from the Raising World Changers series:

Ownership: The Greatest Gift You Can Give Your Child

Encourage Your Kids to Be Praying Kids

The Hows and Whys of Talking to Kids About Sex

38 Bible Verses to Teach Kids Wisdom

9 Tips for Raising Kids Who Change the World

The Hows and Whys of Teaching Kids Commitment

 

Your Turn:

How do you share with your kids about current events? Are you afraid of sharing too much too soon? If you have had some of these deeper discussions, how did they turn out? Share about it in the comments!

Last week, a long awaited change happened in my heart--something formed from lots of

Believe It: Why YOU Are God’s Masterpiece

Last week, a long awaited change happened in my heart–something formed from lots of “how-do-I-handle-this?” conversations with God.

It was a tiny change in my character development (only a handful of people probably noticed), but it reminded me again of this simple, beautiful thought: I am God’s masterpiece—a ever-changing work of art on display in this world for His glory.

And friend, so are you. 

Last week, a long awaited change happened in my heart--something formed from lots of "how-do-I-handle-this?" conversations with God. It was a tiny change in my character development (only a handful of people probably noticed), but it reminded me again of this simple, beautiful thought: I am God’s masterpiece—a ever-changing work of art on display in this world for His glory. And friend, so are you.

Don’t believe me? I don’t blame you. Most days “masterpiece” is hardly the way I’d describe myself either!

Instead, every tiny flaw seems to jump out at me. I want to nit-pick the imperfections and ugly, scarred areas. 

My soul becomes weary from pushing on through the struggles, and I want to run away from my troubles and not let them “perfect” me (James 1:2-4).

When I look at the tragedies and the everyday bumps and bruises, I don’t want to believe that “all things work together for those who love God and are called according to His purpose” (Romans 8:28).

Some days (as I watch my troubles mount to an almost unbearable weight on my shoulders) I just want to be taken away to somewhere quiet where I can be left alone for the next month with my journal, a cup of tea and a great book.

But thank goodness that our life’s foundation doesn’t have to be based on the fluctuations of our feelings or even the reality of our circumstances.

Thank goodness that God sees through the nastiness of our world (both our difficult circumstances and our selfish desires) and somehow, someway transforms them into a breathtaking cascade of His glory.

Yes, friends, sometimes we can step back and look beyond the everyday trials and see the masterpiece slowly taking shape. And that makes all the uncomfortable shaping worth it.

I recently shared about this experience–of how we are ALL God’s masterpiece–at My Joy-Filled Life. I gave seven truths about masterpieces, included lots of scriptural insight, and spoke about how today’s trials are part of the Master Artist’s plan to mold us into His amazing vision for our lives.

Check out the entire post here, and be encouraged. Discover why, yes YOU are God’s masterpiece!

Prayer is powerful! When we pray, we can literally change the world with our words. What an awesome thing to pass on to our kids! How can we teach our kids to pray? It's not as difficult as you may think. You can raise kids who change the world through prayer too!

How to Teach Your Kids to Pray

Prayer is powerful! When we pray, we can literally change the world with our words. What an awesome thing to pass on to our kids!

How can we teach our kids to pray? It’s not as difficult as you may think. You can raise kids who change the world through prayer too!

Prayer is powerful! When we pray, we can literally change the world with our words. What an awesome thing to pass on to our kids! How can we teach our kids to pray? It's not as difficult as you may think. You can raise kids who change the world through prayer too!

My twelve-year-old son and I sat on the back porch swing, swaying in the last afternoon rays of sunshine.

My heart was heavy as I told him of a friend’s daughter who was going through some intense times of rebellion. He listened and slowly nodded, a small “this is all-too-familiar” smirk playing on his face. He’d known this path well.

Then I turned to him and asked him: “Would you join with me in praying for this girl?”

He looked over at me, his eyes meeting mine for a quiet moment.

I looked down at the ground, my foot playing in the dirt below. “You know, I came to you because you understand what this girl is feeling. You know how to pray for her. You know her needs, and through prayer, you can guide her and her family toward healing and hope… in a way that I just can’t.”

Then I looked back up at him and suddenly I saw the light come on in his eyes: For the first time, my son saw how his very painful past experiences in this area could be redeemed into a beautiful ministry opportunity for God.

I’m happy to say that my son and I joined hands in the swing that day and lifted up this hurting young woman (and her parents) to the Lord. And through our tear-ladened words, God, in the amazing restorative way that only He works, built that much more beauty from the ashes of my son’s wounds. 

Opportunities like these that teach our kids about pray are everywhere! These situations may not always be this dramatic, but each offers incredible teaching avenues that encourage our kids to become praying kids that can change the world with their words.

Teach Kids to Pray By Loving Prayer

I’m not a prayer “expert” (I don’t think anyone is, by the way), and honestly, I don’t believe that there are any “right” or “wrong” ways to pray.

Prayer is simply entering into a conversation with God. Each person has their own style and way to connect to others; and therefore, it makes sense that we can each have our own ways to have that conversation with God.

(One important caveat I must mention: I’m speaking of Christian prayer here. Christian prayer is more than meditation or ritual. It is founded in a relationship with Jesus that begins when we recognize that: We are imperfect beings in need of a savior to help us bridge the gap between us and a perfect God; That Jesus’ perfect life, death and resurrection serve as a ransom and substitute for our sins so that we can now be fully restored to fellowship with God, and that; Because of this amazing, free gift of salvation, we want to spend our days honoring God with our lives, allowing Him to show us how He can use our God-given talents and experiences to bless others and bring glory to Him, thereby living our lives to the fullest extent possible.)

Do you have a friend who calls to tell you she’s worried about her daughter’s illness? Offer to pray for her right then and there. 

Are you driving on the freeway and you notice someone with car troubles or there’s an automobile accident? Say a quick prayer that God would bring them help quickly and that He’d comfort them during this scary time. 

Did your child just have a massive temper tantrum and is now embarrassed and repentant for his actions? Help them sort out their emotions, and then encourage them to pray (either by themselves or with you) through all they’re experiencing.

Or how about this one: If you’re having a rough day, ask one of your kids to pray for you. (Yes, this actually happened to me today!) 

Just be real. Be authentic. Let your kids see you keeping up that conversation with God all throughout your day. Let them see that God is intimately involved in all aspects of your life, and that prayer is the vehicle for that guidance.

They’ll catch it!

Resources That Teach Kids to Pray

Here are some excellent prayer resources:

12 More Ideas for Teaching Kids to Pray

1) De-mystify prayer. I’ve found that some of my kids are more daunted than others by the simple idea of prayer (especially praying aloud). But really, it’s just a conversation. And conversation includes both talking and listening (more on this in a minute).

2) Teach kids healthy prayer patterns such as ACTS. While I don’t think that there’s a certain type of prayer that’s more “blessed” or “proper” than others, I am a huge fan of encouraging my kids to consider the acronym “ACTS” (Adoration, Confession, Thanksgiving, Supplication) during their “talking” part of the prayer.

3) Teach them how meditating on God’s truth and listening is a part of prayer. I believe that deeply contemplating a scriptural truth (while also internally asking, “God, how does this apply to me or to this other situation I’m experiencing right now?”) is an excellent way to hear God’s guidance through prayer. This is the “listening” aspect of prayer. We teach our kids to use “The 5 Rs” while studying a Bible verse and the last two “Rs” (“Relate/Reveal” and “Respond”) can help anyone practice the discipline of learning to hear God’s still, small voice.

4) Teach kids to pray honestly. I didn’t become a Christian until I was 19, and so I didn’t grow up hearing “the right words to say” while praying. My first prayers as a new Christian were bold and raw because I hadn’t learned the little Christian phrases so many of us pick up. And you know what? My prayer life was especially rich during this time! I think God really treasures when we say exactly what’s on our hearts (He already knows those real emotions anyway!).

5) Share with them answered prayers. I love telling my kids, “Remember when we were praying about…” and then telling them the amazing God-story that came of it. These are the bricks that build the walls of faith for our kids!

6) Teach kids the discipline of a regular prayer time and of prayer lists. There are set times in our day or week when my husband and I pray together, for example. We also have prayer lists (general ongoing prayer topics) that we pray for regarding each child, our family, our friends, our neighborhood, our country and the world. As our kids have gotten older, we’ve invited them into these times, and we’ve encouraged them to start keeping prayer lists.

7) Teach kids how to keep track of others’ prayers. There are a plethora of ways to organize prayer requests as you hear about them. For me, it’s easiest to keep an ongoing list in the “notes” area of my phone. Or kids can keep other’s prayer requests (or their own prayer requests) written in a prayer journal, for example. And speaking of a prayer journal…

8) Teach them how to journal their prayers. When I have a hard time knowing what to pray (or if I’m feeling overwhelmed by all that I need to pray for), I just begin writing it out in a prayer journal. We encourage our kids to write down their prayers in a conversational format (especially when they’re trying to pray through difficult emotions they’re experiencing).

9) Pray for others’ needs with your children present. Let them see you coming to God on other’s behalf. Kids need to see that prayer isn’t just a selfish “God-I-need this” sort of thing. Instead, encourage them to develop eyes of compassion to see how they can pray for others. Then, prayer becomes a privilege where we can lift our loved ones up to God on their behalf!

10) Pray for each child (in their presence and privately). We love to invite God’s presence to work in the lives of our kids! And because I think anyone appreciates knowing that they’re being prayed for, we tell our kids often that we’re praying for them regarding specific situations.

11) Demonstrate boldness by praying in different situations (in public, with friends, as a family, etc). Prayer can be a beautifully private expression or an equally elegant public testimony of faith. Again, just let them see that prayer is simply conversation. And conversation happens at any time and in any situation.

12) Pray that your child would develop a passion for prayer. Perhaps this seems obvious, but ask God to give your child a strong desire to include prayer into all aspects of his life. Pray that he wouldn’t see it as a ritual, but as a opportunity for connection, surrender and trust.

Resources that Give Kids A Passion for Prayer

3 Practical Ways to Pray for the Persecuted and the Lost (Plus a Free Prayer Card)

teach kids to pray with daily prayers

5 Step Method for Kids Personal Bible Study Time (with Free Bookmark Craft Printable)–the “Relate/Reveal” section helps them practice the art of learning to listen to what God may be saying to them through a scripture passage. This is an internal type of prayer conversation.

Teaching-kids-to-pray

Our Kids Can Change The World Through Prayer

1) Every cultural shift toward Christ-centered living starts in prayer. It makes sense that if we want to impact our culture for Christ, we need to listen regularly for what He may want to do in our culture. That time of connection comes through a habitual prayer life, and the strongest habits are instilled when we are young.

2) Prayer connects each of us toward each other. Our world suddenly becomes smaller when we pray for someone else’s need on the other side of the planet. And even if we’re praying for the person next to us, prayer allows us to get outside of our own selfish needs and to serve others. Wouldn’t you agree that world-changing kids need to be kids who can recognize other’s needs?

3) Prayer reveals God’s heart. When we pray, our hearts are connected to the gracious, all-loving heart of the One who longs to completely pardon and forgive. Naturally this makes us more understanding, compassionate and filled with a burden to ask, “How can I be involved?”

4) Prayer reveals God’s action plan for a given situation. Prayer allows us to tap into the One who knows all aspects of a situation, holds all things together and who knows the best solution. It’s through prayer that God reveals how we can play a part in the change.

Prayer is an essential part in the life of a believer, and especially important if we’re striving to raise our kids to be world changers. May God reveal to you how you can encourage your kids to be praying kids so that they can impact the world through their words!

Your Turn:Praying kids are kids that can literally change the world with their words! How can we encourage our children toward a lifestyle of prayer? You've got to check out this list of ideas, resources and stories from a mom of four. You can raise kids who change the world through prayer too!

How do you encourage your kids to pray at all times and in all seasons? How have you seen God orchestrate amazing prayer opportunities for your children? Do you have other ideas for building praying kids? Let’s share and encourage each other in the comments below!

38 Bible Verses to Teach Kids Wisdom

There are many, many character traits my husband and I want to teach our kids: to show perseverance; to always practice integrity; and to understand how to lead with humility and grace.

However, there is one foundational character quality that we encourage above all else:

Wisdom.

The Bible says in Proverbs 4:8: “Getting wisdom is the wisest thing you can do! And whatever else you do, develop good judgment.”

There are many, many character traits my husband and I want to teach our kids: to show perseverance; to always practice integrity; and to understand how to lead with humility and grace. However, there is one foundational character quality that we encourage above all else: Wisdom. Don't miss this excellent resource--38 Bible verses in all!--that encourage kids to grow in wisdom. Plus ideas on how to teach wisdom!

You see, wisdom is the source of all the character traits. It’s the foundational piece from which all other spiritual growth springs. 

Proverbs 9:11-12 says that wisdom will “multiply your days and add years to your life.”

In fact, wisdom was created before any other aspect of our world was created (Proverbs 8:22-31)! I just learned this the other day and this concept blew me away. God established the concept of wisdom, and then built everything else we see around us on that core principle.

God ordered his universe to work perfectly together using the foundational element of wisdom, and all things were created in His wisdom (Proverbs 3:19-20). Therefore, doesn’t it make sense that we should encourage our kids toward wisdom as the stepping stone to all other character qualities we teach?

What will happen to a society when a generation of kids are raised to cultivate godly wisdom? I know no faster way of changing the world!

Here are a list of 38 Bible Verses that Teach Kids About Wisdom:

Note: These verses can be memorized, completed as part of a daily devotional or be part of a family reading time at the dinner table. Be sure to check out these posts as helpful resources in each of these areas:

21 Ways to Memorize Bible Verses with Music, Games, and Art

3 Keys to Easy Scripture Memorization for Kids

5 Step Method for Kids Personal Bible Study Time (includes a free downloadable bookmark)

Easy Tip for an Awesome Family Bible Time

 

Wisdom is Available to Everyone:

“Listen as Wisdom calls out! Hear as understanding raises her voice! On the hilltop along the road, she takes her stand at the crossroads. By the gates at the entrance to the town, on the road leading in, she cried aloud, ‘I call to you, to all of you! I raise my voice to all people.” Proverbs 8:1-3

 

Wisdom Is Found By Those Who Seek It:

“I love all who love me. Those who search will surely find me.” Proverbs 8:17

“If you need wisdom, ask our generous God and He will give it to you. He will not rebuke you for asking.” James 1:5

 

Wisdom Is Highly Valued by God:

“Choose my instruction rather than silver, and knowledge rather than pure gold. For wisdom is far more valuable than rubies. Nothing you desire can compare with it.” Proverbs 8:10-11

[Solomon speaking] “‘Give me an understanding heart so that I can govern your people well and know the difference between right and wrong. For who by himself is able to govern this great people of yours?’ The Lord was pleased that Solomon had asked for wisdom. So God replied, ‘Because you have asked for wisdom in governing my people with justice and have not asked for a long life or wealth or the death of your enemies— I will give you what you asked for! I will give you a wise and understanding heart such as no one else has had or ever will have! And I will also give you what you did not ask for—riches and fame! No other king in all the world will be compared to you for the rest of your life! And if you follow me and obey my decrees and my commands as your father, David, did, I will give you a long life.’” 1 Kings 3:9-13

 

Wisdom Is Foundational:

“A house is built by wisdom and becomes strong through good sense. Through knowledge its rooms are filled with all sorts of precious riches and valuables.” Proverbs 24:3-4

 

God’s Wisdom Is Supreme:

1 Corinthians 1:18-31

“For the wisdom of this world is foolishness to God. As the Scriptures say, “He traps the wise in the snare of their own cleverness.” 1 Cor 3:19

 

Wisdom is Found in God: 

“Fear of the Lord is the foundation of true knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and discipline.” Proverbs 1:7

Proverbs 2 (entire chapter)

“The fear of the Lord is the foundation of wisdom. Knowledge of the Holy One results in good judgment.” Proverbs 9:10

“But true wisdom and power are found in God; counsel and understanding are his.” Job 12:13

“God alone understands the way to wisdom; he knows where it can be found, for he looks throughout the whole earth and sees everything under the heavens. He decided how hard the winds should blow and how much rain should fall. He made the laws for the rain and laid out a path for the lightning.Then he saw wisdom and evaluated it. He set it in place and examined it thoroughly. And this is what he says to all humanity: ‘The fear of the Lord is true wisdomto forsake evil is real understanding.’” Job 28:23-28

‘He said, ‘Praise the name of God forever and ever, for he has all wisdom and power.'” Daniel 2:20

“And my message and my preaching were very plain. Rather than using clever and persuasive speeches, I relied only on the power of the Holy Spirit. I did this so you would trust not in human wisdom but in the power of God. Yet when I am among mature believers, I do speak with words of wisdom, but not the kind of wisdom that belongs to this world or to the rulers of this world, who are soon forgotten. No, the wisdom we speak of is the mystery of God—his plan that was previously hidden, even though he made it for our ultimate glory before the world began.” 1 Cor 2: 4-7

“In him lie hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge.” Col 2:3

“They sang, ‘Amen! Blessing and glory and wisdom and thanksgiving and honor and power and strength belong to our God forever and ever! Amen.'” Rev 7:12

 

Wisdom will Protect and Guard:

“Wise choices will watch over you. understanding will keep you safe.” Proverbs 2:11

“Don’t turn your back on wisdom, for she will protect you.” Proverbs 4:6

“Those who trust their own insight are foolish, but anyone who walks in wisdom is safe.” Proverbs 28:26

“None of them could stand against the wisdom and the Spirit with which Stephen spoke.” Acts 6:10

 

Wisdom Is a Choice:

“Trust in the Lord with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding. Seek his will in all you do, and he will show you which path to take. Don’t be impressed with your own wisdom. Instead, fear the Lord and turn away from evil.” Proverbs 3:5-7

“Love wisdom like a sister; make insight a beloved member of your family.” Proverbs 7:4

“Sensible people keep their eyes glued on wisdom, but a fool’s eyes wander to the ends of the earth.” Proverbs 17:24

 

Wisdom Brings Joy:

Wisdom is a tree of life to those who embrace her; happy are those who hold her tightly.” Proverbs 3:18

“Get wisdom; develop good judgment. Don’t forget my words or turn away from them. Don’t turn your back on wisdom, for she will protect you. Love her, and she will guard you. Getting wisdom is the wisest thing you can do! And whatever else you do, develop good judgment. If you prize wisdom, she will make you great. Embrace her, and she will honor you. She will place a lovely wreath on your head; she will present you with a beautiful crown.” Proverbs 4:5-9

“To acquire wisdom is to love yourself; people who cherish understanding will prosper.” Proverbs 19:8

 

Wisdom Is Evident Through Actions:

Wisdom is enshrined in an understanding heart; wisdom is not found among fools.” Proverbs 14:33

“Wise words are like deep waters; wisdom flows from the wise like a bubbling brook.” Proverbs 18:4

“‘The Son of Man, on the other hand, feasts and drinks, and you say, ‘He’s a glutton and a drunkard, and a friend of tax collectors and other sinners!’ But wisdom is shown to be right by its results.” Matthew 11:19

“But wisdom is shown to be right by the lives of those who follow it.” Luke 7:35

“You have been taught the holy Scriptures from childhood, and they have given you the wisdom to receive the salvation that comes by trusting in Christ Jesus.” 2 Tim 3:15

“If you are wise and understand God’s ways, prove it by living an honorable life, doing good works with the humility that comes from wisdom. But if you are bitterly jealous and there is selfish ambition in your heart, don’t cover up the truth with boasting and lying. For jealousy and selfishness are not God’s kind of wisdom. Such things are earthly, unspiritual, and demonic. For wherever there is jealousy and selfish ambition, there you will find disorder and evil of every kind. But the wisdom from above is first of all pure. It is also peace loving, gentle at all times, and willing to yield to others. It is full of mercy and the fruit of good deeds. It shows no favoritism and is always sincere. And those who are peacemakers will plant seeds of peace and reap a harvest of righteousness.” James 3:13-18

 

Wisdom Is Meant to Be Shared:

“So we tell others about Christ, warning everyone and teaching everyone with all the wisdom God has given us. We want to present them to God, perfect in their relationship to Christ.” Col 1:28

“Let the message about Christ, in all its richness, fill your lives. Teach and counsel each other with all the wisdom he gives. Sing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs to God with thankful hearts.” Col 3:6

 

Jesus Is Wisdom Personified:

“‘For the time is coming,’ says the Lord, ‘when I will raise up a righteous descendant from King David’s line. He will be a King who rules with wisdom. He will do what is just and right throughout the land.'” Jeremiah 23:5

“There the child grew up healthy and strong. He was filled with wisdom, and God’s favor was on him.” Luke 2:40

“Jesus grew in wisdom and in stature and in favor with God and all the people.” Luke 2:52

Other Ways to Encourage Wisdom

Wisdom is a concept that must be both a continual input and flow from the Holy Spirit, and a habitual practice (evident through wise choices). We must teach both an inputting and a practical application of wisdom. These two aspects of wisdom play off each other in a beautiful harmony.

How can we encourage our kids toward the importance of godly wisdom?

Today I’m sharing 7 ways to encourage godly wisdom in a post for the “30 Days of Raising Boys” series called “The Most Important Character Trait to Teach Boys.” You can check it out here!

Don’t miss this post as well:

9 Tips for Raising Kids Who Change the World

Do you know these 9 awesome tips for raising kids that change the world? Vibrant Homeschooling

**Scripture quotations are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright ©1996, 2004, 2007, 2013 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.

There's a simple life truth that saved me from suicide twenty years ago, and that has been re-making me ever since. If you can fully grasp this concept then I guarantee that you will be set free. You will look at your circumstances differently. You will parent differently. You will manage your finances differently. You will speak differently to your spouse. What once looked frightening and overwhelming becomes bearable (and dare I say, joy-filled!) when you can understand—and completely believe—this simple life truth. You've got to read this and discover it for yourself! There's a FREE printable here too--my gift to you--and some beautiful art from Red Letter Words that can remind you of this truth everyday.

The Life Truth That Changes Everything (and I Do Mean Everything)

One day almost twenty years ago, I came face to face with a horrible fact: I wanted to end my life.

I had battled depression and self-esteem issues for a long time, and the pain had become unbearable.

As I sat on the floor of my college apartment’s bathroom (a bottle of aspirin in my hand and tears rolling down my cheeks), I wrestled with my jumbled, emotional thoughts. I’d become a Christian a year before and, hidden in my heart (way down deep) was a solitary life truth that softly whispered to my troubled soul:

You are loved. 

There's a simple life truth that saved me from suicide twenty years ago, and that has been re-making me ever since. If you can fully grasp this concept then I guarantee that you will be set free. You will look at your circumstances differently. You will parent differently. You will manage your finances differently. You will speak differently to your spouse. What once looked frightening and overwhelming becomes bearable (and dare I say, joy-filled!) when you can understand—and completely believe—this simple life truth. You've got to read this and discover it for yourself! There's a FREE printable here too--my gift to you--and some beautiful art from Red Letter Words that can remind you of this truth everyday.

 

I didn’t believe it that day, at least not fully. But having a tiny glimmer of that life truth in my heart was enough to compel me to put down the bottle of pills and pick up my Bible again and continue to push through the mess.

I know that’s a very heavy way to start off a post, but, friend, I want to tell you that it’s 100 percent true.

That simple life truth saved me that cloudy March day, and it’s been re-making me ever since.

There's a simple life truth that saved me from suicide twenty years ago, and that has been re-making me ever since. If you can fully grasp this concept then I guarantee that you will be set free. You will look at your circumstances differently. You will parent differently. You will manage your finances differently. You will speak differently to your spouse. What once looked frightening and overwhelming becomes bearable (and dare I say, joy-filled!) when you can understand—and completely believe—this simple life truth. You've got to read this and discover it for yourself! There's a FREE printable here too--my gift to you--and some beautiful art from Red Letter Words that can remind you of this truth everyday.

How This Life Truth Has Been My Anchor and Hope

Fast forward ten years. My life had radically changed: The depression was behind me, and now I was happily married with two small boys.

I was again exhausted and emotional, but for a very different reason. As I nursed a new baby all night and chased a toddler all day, my self-identity was once again in question.

I asked God, “Who am I?” as I embraced the relentless role of motherhood. And in my heart I heard him confirm once again:

You are loved.

There's a simple life truth that saved me from suicide twenty years ago, and that has been re-making me ever since. If you can fully grasp this concept then I guarantee that you will be set free. You will look at your circumstances differently. You will parent differently. You will manage your finances differently. You will speak differently to your spouse. What once looked frightening and overwhelming becomes bearable (and dare I say, joy-filled!) when you can understand—and completely believe—this simple life truth. You've got to read this and discover it for yourself! There's a FREE printable here too--my gift to you--and some beautiful art from Red Letter Words that can remind you of this truth everyday.

Since that time, I have experienced many other ups and downs in my life. Scary things. Beautiful things. And through it all, I’ve felt the life truth “You are loved” growing stronger and more vibrant in my heart.

Why Knowing This Simple Life Truth Changes Everything

I say that the life truth “You are loved” changes everything because, well, it simply does.

If you can fully grasp—not just in a Sunday-School-sort-of-head-knowledge-way—that you are utterly and completely loved, then I guarantee that you will be set free.

You will look at your circumstances differently. You will parent differently. You will manage your finances differently. You will speak differently to your spouse.

What once looked frightening and overwhelming becomes bearable (and dare I say, joy-filled!) when you can understand—and completely believe—this simple life truth.

There's a simple life truth that saved me from suicide twenty years ago, and that has been re-making me ever since. If you can fully grasp this concept then I guarantee that you will be set free. You will look at your circumstances differently. You will parent differently. You will manage your finances differently. You will speak differently to your spouse. What once looked frightening and overwhelming becomes bearable (and dare I say, joy-filled!) when you can understand—and completely believe—this simple life truth. You've got to read this and discover it for yourself! There's a FREE printable here too--my gift to you--and some beautiful art from Red Letter Words that can remind you of this truth everyday.

When you realize that the One holding the entire universe together is the same one who is completely crazy about you, you find yourself realizing that there really is nothing to be afraid of.

Life doesn’t become perfect, but the pain becomes purposeful as you trust that He will re-make it into a glorious testimony.

Exploring and Discovering This Life Truth Together

“You are loved” is a life truth that needs to echo in every corner of our home, especially as we teach, encourage and inspire our kids to live on purpose for God.

Think about it: How differently would your life choices have been if you’d known beyond a shadow of a doubt that you were utterly and completely loved by God?

I want to introduce you to Dee Kasberger. As the artist behind Red Letter Words (the creator of the beautiful pieces I’ve showcased in this post), she too is passionate about leading others to deeper knowledge of this awesome life truth.

There's a simple life truth that saved me from suicide twenty years ago, and that has been re-making me ever since. If you can fully grasp this concept then I guarantee that you will be set free. You will look at your circumstances differently. You will parent differently. You will manage your finances differently. You will speak differently to your spouse. What once looked frightening and overwhelming becomes bearable (and dare I say, joy-filled!) when you can understand—and completely believe—this simple life truth. You've got to read this and discover it for yourself! There's a FREE printable here too--my gift to you--and some beautiful art from Red Letter Words that can remind you of this truth everyday.

I’ve had Red Letter Words Art in my home for many years now, and I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been inspired by these simply beautiful art pieces. I have them all over my home so as to constantly remind me of my ultimate purpose as a wife, mom and friend.

There's a simple life truth that saved me from suicide twenty years ago, and that has been re-making me ever since. If you can fully grasp this concept then I guarantee that you will be set free. You will look at your circumstances differently. You will parent differently. You will manage your finances differently. You will speak differently to your spouse. What once looked frightening and overwhelming becomes bearable (and dare I say, joy-filled!) when you can understand—and completely believe—this simple life truth. You've got to read this and discover it for yourself! There's a FREE printable here too--my gift to you--and some beautiful art from Red Letter Words that can remind you of this truth everyday.

Now that you’ve heard my story about how I’ve been radically shaped by the life truth “you are loved,” you can imagine how I felt when I saw this art piece by Red Letter Words.

There's a simple life truth that saved me from suicide twenty years ago, and that has been re-making me ever since. If you can fully grasp this concept then I guarantee that you will be set free. You will look at your circumstances differently. You will parent differently. You will manage your finances differently. You will speak differently to your spouse. What once looked frightening and overwhelming becomes bearable (and dare I say, joy-filled!) when you can understand—and completely believe—this simple life truth. You've got to read this and discover it for yourself! There's a FREE printable here too--my gift to you--and some beautiful art from Red Letter Words that can remind you of this truth everyday.

My heart still leaps as I read all of the words on this piece. I am blessed! Chosen! Accepted! Delightful! Irreplaceable! Secure! Carried! Known! Valuable! And victorious! All because I can know beyond a shadow of a doubt this life truth: I am loved by God.

In fact, the simple statement “You are loved” seems to bring all these other life truths together, doesn’t it?

There's a simple life truth that saved me from suicide twenty years ago, and that has been re-making me ever since. If you can fully grasp this concept then I guarantee that you will be set free. You will look at your circumstances differently. You will parent differently. You will manage your finances differently. You will speak differently to your spouse. What once looked frightening and overwhelming becomes bearable (and dare I say, joy-filled!) when you can understand—and completely believe—this simple life truth. You've got to read this and discover it for yourself! There's a FREE printable here too--my gift to you--and some beautiful art from Red Letter Words that can remind you of this truth everyday.

For this reason, I chose to hang this beautiful 20 x 30″ “You Are Loved” piece by Red Letter Word Art in our homeschool room. This incredible piece was inspired by bestselling author Holley Gerth.

There's a simple life truth that saved me from suicide twenty years ago, and that has been re-making me ever since. If you can fully grasp this concept then I guarantee that you will be set free. You will look at your circumstances differently. You will parent differently. You will manage your finances differently. You will speak differently to your spouse. What once looked frightening and overwhelming becomes bearable (and dare I say, joy-filled!) when you can understand—and completely believe—this simple life truth. You've got to read this and discover it for yourself! There's a FREE printable here too--my gift to you--and some beautiful art from Red Letter Words that can remind you of this truth everyday.

I want my kids to see these truths every single day. I want them to begin to filter all their experiences through the life truth “you are loved.” Because I know it makes a difference!

And, honestly, there are days when my desperate, weary heart needs to hear this life truth more than anyone else in my family.

There's a simple life truth that saved me from suicide twenty years ago, and that has been re-making me ever since. If you can fully grasp this concept then I guarantee that you will be set free. You will look at your circumstances differently. You will parent differently. You will manage your finances differently. You will speak differently to your spouse. What once looked frightening and overwhelming becomes bearable (and dare I say, joy-filled!) when you can understand—and completely believe—this simple life truth. You've got to read this and discover it for yourself! There's a FREE printable here too--my gift to you--and some beautiful art from Red Letter Words that can remind you of this truth everyday.

A Free Gift For You

I was so inspired by this piece that I wanted to see for myself what the Bible actually said about all of the beautiful words in the “You Are Loved” piece. And I discovered a treasure trove that I want to share with you!

I’ve created a free downloadable printable simply called “You are Loved: 101 Bible Verses”  that has scripture references for each of the truths listed on the “You Are Loved” art print. I promise that the true beauty of this printable is found in looking up each of these 101 verses for yourself.

Spend time contemplating these Scriptures and let them speak powerfully to your heart. Let them comfort your weary mama soul. Or even share them with your kids! What a great family Bible time this would make! 

Enjoy! It’s a free gift to you.

And consider how artwork from Red Letter Words Art could bring new levels of joy and truth to your family’s everyday home experiences.

I love filling the walls of our home with God’s encouraging, transformative truth found in Red Letter Words Art pieces!

Dee’s created so many beautiful designs–everything from greeting cards to 5 x 5 art pieces to 20 x 30 art pieces like the “You are loved” piece.

“You are loved”: I believe understanding this simple life truth (and then spending the rest of your days exploring the depths of it!) is the doorway to the fullest, most complete life.

It’s the journey God longs each of us to experience. “You are loved” is the encapsulation of every other beautiful gift we can find in Christ.

I pray that from his glorious, unlimited resources he will empower you with inner strength through his Spirit. Then Christ will make his home in your hearts as you trust in him. Your roots will grow down into God’s love and keep you strong. And may you have the power to understand, as all God’s people should, how wide, how long, how high, and how deep his love is. May you experience the love of Christ, though it is too great to understand fully. Then you will be made complete with all the fullness of life and power that comes from God.”  Ephesians 3:19

FTC Disclosure: I received products from Red Letter Words Art and was compensated for my time. However, all opinions stated here are 100 percent mine, and I was not required to post a positive review. 

If you liked this post, you may also enjoy this:

5 Step Method for Kids Personal Bible Time (with a Free Bookmark Printable)

Teaching-kids-to-have-own-bible-time--WEB

 

Please enjoy the free printable and check out Red Letter Words!


We are linking up this week at Favorite Things Friday, Grace and Truth

Every moment is a gift. Are you afraid that you'll miss the deepest, most precious gifts of this life? This is what I'm struggling with lately. Here's what I'm doing to (tangibly) give my all and to make sure I live life with my kids without any regrets. Vibrant Homeschooling

Every Moment Is A Gift (and 6 Small Ways to Intentionally Savor Them)

We said goodbye to our wonderful dog last week, and I’ve been surprised at the levels of grief I’ve been experiencing.

Sadie was an amazing soul: beautiful, sweet, wise, loyal, faithful and trustworthy. All the things that a dog should be. She was my friend at all times—my protector, my confidante and my listener.

And while I am deeply missing her, I think what is bringing on the waves of emotion is something that has been simmering at the surface for me for quite a while:

I know every moment is a gift, and I am afraid I will miss the deepest, most precious gifts of this life.

Every moment is a gift. Are you afraid that you'll miss the deepest, most precious gifts of this life? This is what I'm struggling with lately. Here's what I'm doing to (tangibly) give my all and to make sure I live life with my kids without any regrets. Vibrant Homeschooling

Here’s One of My Greatest Fears

I’m afraid that I will become so consumed with my desire to give my kids the best education; to involve them in the “right” things; even to intentionally engage with them  …. that I will miss out on the dear sweet journey of the everyday.

I am afraid that I will become so consumed with my desire to accomplish, to succeed in my own pursuits that I will allow moments—precious moments—with my husband to go unappreciated, or that I will waste my moments with him by doing other things that are meaningless.

I am really, really good at wanting to get it all done, and it takes lots of work for me to put aside my to-do lists and to simply enjoy the treasure of the moment.

But how do you hold that treasure? How do you appreciate that moment? It is like water slipping through our fingers. It is utterly impossible to hold on to.

And life is so slow in its changing. We live one day to the next and it seems nearly impossible to see any change one day to another. So it becomes easy to take the “Momma, you’re so beautifuls” and the toddler dimples for granted because they are there every day.

But then we wake up one day and realize that they are not

It’s a delicate, heartbreaking, soul-ripping-out sort of tension that I don’t think any of us can ever master. 

We can’t wait for our children to grow up, and yet we know we were sorely miss them as they are now.

Life Does Not Stop Moving

We like to think that things will always be this way. That our kids will always be at home with us. That our children will always be babies. That our health will always be good. That time will stand still and that it’s OK that we’re busy and stressed because nothing will change.

But it will. It can. In a heartbeat.

Each day–each moment–that we live is a gift.

And so I’m asking myself, “What am I doing to treasure that gift? What am I doing to savor it in the moment? Are the habitual choices I’m making going to leave me with regrets? What am I taking for granted? What can I release and let go of so that I can know that I’m living as freely and fully in the moment as possible?

And most of all, I am asking: What do I need to do now—in the everyday—to ensure that I don’t wake up that morning that my kids leave the house for college (or heaven forbid, should something tragic happen to them or to my husband) and I am filled with deep regret that I “missed it”? 

How can I assure myself now—and that future version of myself to come—that I AM appreciating all the moments?

Because once the moment is gone, it is gone.

Every Moment Is A Gift (and 6 Ways to Savor Them)

I don’t have any answers. I don’t think anyone has a magic formula for treasuring those moments.

But I do want to write down a few practical things that perhaps I can do now to give myself some grace around this tension.

Maybe they can help you too if you struggle in this area?

1) I want to get back to my scrapbooks.

I have several unfinished books. My biggest problem here is my own self: I want to make each page a masterpiece; an expression that reflects in design and colors the beauty of that moment. And thus… they are unfinished. From a creative standpoint, I love the process of making them. But from a practical standpoint, I need to get them done and to get those memories savored.

How will scrapbooking help me? It will give me a tangible way to treasure what is going on in our family. I am going to look at digital options here because they are just so much more practical (you have no idea how much it kills me to write that!).

Actually, I was quite intrigued when I began looking at some exciting new digital scrapbooking options:

Mixbook offers beautiful traditional digital scrapbook methods (inserting your photos online and creating pages), plus innovative new ways to scrapbook, including Montage. Montage is super cool because it auto-magically places photos into the best layouts on each page. Even though the software lays the pages out for you, they do offer the option for different colors/designs that you can choose, which I appreciate.

Shutterfly is also another strong digital photo company offering several practical ways to showcase memories. From scrapbooks to photo collages, Shutterfly definitely has the most options when it comes to layouts (they have a Disney-themed book!).

2) I want to put out more pictures in the house.

We moved into our house (in a brand new area) about a year and a half ago. It was only a few months after we moved in that I re-launched this blog, wrote a book and began working on my “bloom” and “rhythm” courses. Oh, and somewhere in there I homeschooled four children! So I feel like while our house is beautiful, I never really fully finished decorating it. And I’d like that decorating to include more photos—both old and new.

I love photo canvases! We have a few of these in our house, and we receive compliments on them all the time. My goal is to get a set of updated professional photos of our family this summer and then create some new photo canvases out of those. I may take advantage of this deal from Simple Canvas Prints–40% off right now!

The kids and I love puzzles, and so I also think it would be fun to get a few of these puzzles made out of photos from some of our favorite events.

And speaking of photos…

3) Get my photos off my phone and my computer.

I have a treasure trove of (unorganized) pictures on my phone. And then, I have an even bigger group of (again, unorganized) photos on my computer. I am going to experiment with a few systems to keep these in check. Capturing memories is something I’m good at. Organizing them? I need to make a better effort here, and to come up with a regular system of documenting them.

I’ve been playing around with Becky Higgins’ Project Life app. With this app, you can literally design a digital scrapbook page on your phone–anywhere, anytime. The pages can then be sent to Project Life and they will create a photo book from them! I’m not in love with the idea of being on my phone more, but I do think it’s a very practical way to get those photos off my phone and to make digital scrapbooks super easy. I also like that I can add in different styles and text right there on my phone, so my creative side is somewhat appeased.

And have you heard about another app called Mosaic? This is probably the easiest way to do digital scrapbooks because it requires literally zero effort! The app takes a group of photos from your phone and auto-creates a 7 x 7-inch photo book in 5 minutes. The layouts are not fancy (they are literally one large photo per page) but it’s for sure an interesting option for ultra-busy moms, especially those moms who want to put together a scrapbook for a certain event (say a birthday or a particular season for a team sport).

4) Vigilantly protect my time and maintain a proper focus.

I love blogging. I love encouraging women. And I’m humbled by the ministry God has gifted to me of this blog and of my courses.

But I have to continually remind myself that my first ministry will always be to my husband and my kids. “What can I do to bless and encourage them today?” needs to be my daily focus and prayer.

My season with my kids is going to end so soon! And I do not want to wake up one day and realize that I don’t recognize the man laying in bed next to me because I’ve allowed my focus to not be on enriching my marriage and on serving him how ever he needs my help.

5) Give myself tons of grace now, and when I’m looking back.

This is a big one for me. So much of what we believe about something is directly related to our perspective on it.

I can do the best job as a mom and keep every memory categorized and saved in a scrapbook, and yet, if I believe that I failed or didn’t do enough, THAT is the memory that I will take from the experience.

I’m really good at remembering the imperfections. Sometimes I have to stop and remind myself of all the good things that are happening—the good choices I AM making. Am I giving my 100 percent best? If the answer is yes, then that means I am doing enough.

6) Continue to Free-Form Journal.

I’ve been bombarded with emotions and thoughts this week, and I’m trying to sort them out through a technique I call “free-form journaling.” It’s something I talk about in my “bloom” course, but in its simplest form, “free-form journaling” is an unstructured, way to write down thoughts and mental clutter.

In this situation, free-form journaling’s goal would be to simply get the raw emotions down on paper (no matter if they make sense or not) and to just begin praying through them and discovering some of the roots (are they rooted in truths or lies, for example).

As I’ve been writing this week, I’ve discovered some not-so-pretty things about myself that I need to address that I think will help relieve some of the fears I’m feeling. I know that keeping this lifeline open for myself will be crucial for continued mental health in this area.

 

This post is part of the “What Mommy Learned in Homeschool This Year” series with other iHomeschool Network bloggers. 

WhatMommyLearned

Your Turn:

Do you struggle with finding the balance between enjoying the moment and wishing some days away?

Do you have the same fears that I do about being afraid that you will look back and feel like you have “missed it”? 

How are you practically cataloging and sharing these precious moments?

 

We’re linking this post to the Grace & Truth Linkup.

games memorize bible verses

How to Use Games to Memorize Bible Verses (Plus Music and Crafts!)

Because God’s word is a lamp to our feet and a light to our path (Ps 119:105), putting it to memory is a really good idea, especially for our kiddos.

And yes, scripture memory can be fun! I’ve gathered a list of games to memorize Bible verses (plus other tips on how to use art and music to memorize scripture).

You’ll love how easy it can be to hide God’s word in your child’s heart!

Does the idea to memorize Bible verses make you shudder…or smile? Scripture memory can be fun! Try this list of games for bible memorization, plus other engaging songs and craft ideas with your kids - and discover how quickly (and joyfully) you can add bible memorization to your family's everyday life.

 

This guest post by Caroline Boykin of WellVersedLiving.com is Part 2 of 2 in a series on helping kids effectively memorize scripture. You can read Part 1 (“3 Keys to Easy Scripture Memorization for Kids”) here. 

Try these engaging games, songs and art ideas with your kids, and discover how quickly (and joyfully) you can make scripture memorization a fun part of your regular family life.

Games to Memorize Bible Verses

Word Wipe Out. Write your memory verse on a chalkboard or dry erase board. Say it together. Erase one word. Say it again. Keep going until the whole verse is erased.

Verse Shuffle. Write the verse or passage on index cards – one word or phrase per card. Shuffle the cards. Take turns putting the verse together in order.

Word Scramble. Print the verse as a word scramble on a piece of paper. For example: heT odrL si ym hpeeSdrh (“The Lord is my Shepherd.” Psalm 23). See who can be the first to unscramble it.

Gotcha! Quote a verse incorrectly to your kids, omitting or changing a key word. Ask them to shout, “Gotcha!” when they catch the mistake. Then quote the verse accurately together.

One-Minute Pit Stop. Gather the kids for a speedy pit stop to refuel with God’s Word. Using a timer, each child gets one minute to practice their memory verse out loud while the others listen. (A helpful activity for auditory learners.)

Toss Across. Toss or roll a ball to one child. Have him say the first word of the verse before tossing or rolling the ball to someone else, who then says the next word, and so on. Continue until you complete the verse. If the ball is dropped, start over again. Time how long it takes to finish the verse; and try to beat the previous time.

Verse Puzzle. Write the verse or passage on heavy paper or cardboard, and then cut it into puzzle pieces for your child to assemble.

SMS Scripture Codes. Write the memory verse out on a piece of paper using only the numbers used to write the words in a SMS message; i.e. the numbers that correspond to the letters on a phone keypad. For example: “367 93 9255 29 32484, 668 29 74448” = “For we walk by faith, not by sight” (2 Corinthians 5:7). If a child has a mobile phone, let them use it for this game to help figure out the code. See who can be the first to decode the verse and write it correctly.

Clap-a-Word. Display the verse on a piece of paper. Say the verse together a few times. Then have one volunteer leave the room (or turn his back). Have another volunteer point to one word from the verse so the others can see it. Then the first volunteer returns to the room, but is not allowed to see the verse displayed. The group says the verse, but claps on the selected word without saying it. The first volunteer says which word was skipped. If he gets stumped, let him look at the verse display. Take turns clapping on various words.

Scripture Skits and Charades. Create skits that show how the Word might be applied to a real life situation. Or play a good ‘ole game of Charades with your memory verses.

Music to Memorize Bible Verses

Music is an exuberant and effortless way to memorize Bible verses. Did you know we were fashioned for music? Yup. The melody (which means “to praise God”) is the main tune of a song, including the lyrics, and it engages our mind. The harmony, with its various major and minor keys, affects our emotions. They rhythm is the toe-tapping beat that appeals to our body. Our Master Musician is pure genius!

Check out these terrific word-for-word Scripture CDs. They’ll put a skip in your step, a smile on your face, and God’s Word in your heart.

games memorize bible verses

Seeds Family Worship CDs and Videos I’m a fan! Songwriter Jason Houser puts verses to a contemporary sound the whole family can enjoy. (Seeds CDs are available at the Well-Versed Living store or on Amazon.)


games memorize bible versesChildren’s Scripture Memory Songs CDs
Catchy, well-produced Scripture songs by award-winning songwriter and worship leader, Jim Spencer. There are two:  Scripture Memory Songs 1 and Scripture Memory Songs 2.
games memorize bible versesHide the Word CD Series Over 190 Scriptures set to a variety of worship-style music; arranged by Senior Pastor and songwriter, Mark Altrogge.
games memorize bible versesHide ‘Em In Your Heart Vol. 1 & 2 Steve Green puts scripture to music and makes it easy for kids to memorize classic Bible verses. You can even purchase both volumes of these classic CDs in one album!

Or…

Make up your own Scripture ditties. Sing a passage to a hip-hop beat or familiar show tune. For example:

Sing The 10 Commandments (paraphrased) to “Do-Re-Mi” from the Sound of Music.

One, don’t worship other gods.
Two, no idols are allowed.
Three, don’t speak God’s name in jest.
Four, the Sabbath is for rest.
Five, respect your mom and dad.
Six, don’t ever, ever kill.
Seven, be faithful to your spouse.
And don’t steal, don’t lie, don’t want your neighbor’s things.

Art to Memorize Bible Verses

Bible Verse Poster. Choose a memory verse or passage as a theme verse for your family. Together, write it on a piece of poster board. Decorate the poster with pictures or drawings for linking and living the passage. Display the poster where it can be seen often, like a common hallway. Create a new poster each year or season.

Bible Verse Collage. Using magazines, catalogs, and junk mail, help your kids cut out the words of a verse along with pictures that link the verse for memory. (For hard-to-find words, cut out individual letters.) Assemble the verse, and then glue the words and pictures to a sheet of construction or scrapbooking paper. Display the verse art on an easel or frame.

Book It. Help your child write a verse or passage on blank sheets of paper, or print the passage on your computer, one line or phrase per page. Staple the pages together. Have your child illustrate each page. Read the book at bedtime and admire your child’s handiwork. Over time, your child will link each verse with the pictures he has drawn, helping him remember the verse sequence. (Try this with Psalm 100.)

God’s Promises Pillowcase. Purchase an inexpensive cotton pillowcase. Use permanent markers or fabric paints to personalize it with reassuring and comforting verses. Tie-dye it or sew soft ribbon or lace around the edges to make it more decorative. Consider verses such as: “He who keeps you will not slumber” (Psalm 121:2) or “In peace I will lie down and sleep, for you alone, O Lord, will keep me safe” (Psalm 4:8 NLT).

Scripture Placemats. Make Scripture memory placemats out of 11” x 14” construction paper or poster board – one for each family member and a few extra for guests. Write a different verse on each placemat, decorate them with correlating pictures and drawings, and laminate. Take turns saying the “placemat verses” before or after dinner. Create memory links with food-themed verses like, “But the fruit of the Spirit is…” (Galatians 5:22-23) and “Jesus said to them, ‘I am the bread of life” (John 6:35).

Treasure Chest of Truth. Purchase an inexpensive wooden box or index card box to hold your memory verse cards. Spray or brush paint the outside antique brown. Hot glue plastic coin pieces on the top. With marker or paint pen, write Psalm 119:72 on the side, “The law of your mouth is better to me than thousands of gold and silver pieces.” Store your memory verse cards inside. Keep the treasure chest on the kitchen table or on your child’s nightstand for handy review.

Sidewalk Art. Give your kids some colorful sidewalk chalk and let them create delightful verse art on your driveway or sidewalk.

Want more Bible memory tips and tools? Check out The Well-Versed Family: Raising Kids of Faith through Scripture Memory (2nd Edition)! You’ll find everything you need for hiding God’s Word in the heart of your home: music, games, motions, learning links, family devotionals, 90 scripture memory verse cards, and more.

Your Turn:

How can you use games to memorize Bible verses in your family’s everyday activities? Which will you try? Share with us here!