All posts written by Jared Kennedy

Learning Centers: Elementary Art Center

Art Center

This is a place to make art.  Work together to create something beautiful that reminds you of today’s lesson.  Remember, God creates good and beautiful things.  When we create, we imitate him and give Him glory.

Use the center:

  • Draw what you remember from the lesson.  Make a timeline of events from the story using pictures and words.
  • Think about today’s memory verse: (1) Draw what you imagine.  (2) Write out the verse with different colors for each word (or shapes around each word) to help you remember it.  (3) Write the verse using pictures instead of words.
  • Use the easels together to create a large piece of art.  Work together.  Remember that God has made each of us uniquely creative.

Clean up: Wipe down whiteboards and put markers or paint supplies away neatly

A Charlie Brown Christmas

Think Tank: Santa Claus & Children’s Ministry

think-childrens-ministry

It happens almost every year. One kid comes to children’s church with a personal mission to prove Santa is not real. Besides the disruption, it creates a situation where one child is calling someone’s mom a liar. That’s why my friend Tony Kummer called to order a special Christmas edition of our Think Tank. santa-claus-is-not-Jesus

How do you handle the whole issue of Santa Claus in your ministry? How would you redirect a group of children at church who are debating his existence? What advice would you give Christan parents & grandparents about Santa?

This was the question for the December edition of the Children’s Ministry Think Tank. Here is the response that Fletcher Lang and I put together for the discussion.  You can follow the responses of other Children’s Ministry leaders here.

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The Jesse Tree: An Advent Celebration, Part 5

Jesse Tree Outlines for December 19th-25th
(adapted for our toddlers from the RCA website and The Glorious Coming. The symbols and patterns used below are copyrighted by Reformed Church Press)

December 19th: The Watch Tower

Habakkuk 2:1a (NIV)  I will stand at my watch and station myself on the ramparts; I will look to see what he will say to me and what answer I am to give.

Christmas is less than a week away! Waiting is so hard! These are the days of counting calendars and numbering the shopping days left.  But we know that Christmas will eventually come, and our waiting will be over. We wait for so many things, some of them happy and some of them not so happy. Waiting means we are looking ahead to the future.  Before Jesus was born, the people were waiting for a savior. They had faith that God would keep his promise. They waited a long time; some of them forgot to keep looking for God’s promised son. They no longer cared about God or God’s promise, and when Jesus arrived they didn’t recognize him.  But those who remembered and trusted God recognized Jesus and their waiting was finally over.  We are not only waiting for Christmas.  We are waiting for Jesus to come again as well.  Do we wait anxiously… on the edge of our seats… for Jesus to come again?  Or are we distracted?  Have we forgotten to keep on looking for his coming?  Father, help us to wait patiently and persistently.

December 20th: Zecharaiah and Elizabeth

Luke 1:17 (NIV) And he will go before the Lord in the spirit and power of Elijah, to turn the hearts of the fathers to their children and the disobedient to the wisdom of the righteous-to make ready a people prepared for the Lord.

Zechariah and Elizabeth honored God, and God loved them, but they did not have a child.  One day while Zechariah was working in the temple, an angel brought him a message from God.  The angel told Zechariah that he and Elizabeth were going to have a very special son and his name was going to be John. Zechariah didn’t believe the angel’s good news.  So, God took away Zechariah’s voice as a sign of God’s power. Imagine if you had seen an angel who had told you wonderful, happy news, and you weren’t able to tell anyone what had happened!  Sometimes it is difficult to believe God’s good news.  Zechariah and Elizabeth were happy to know that they would have a son chosen by God to do important work.  They were blessed by God even though the blessing was difficult to believe at first.  Father, prepare our hearts to believe the good news about your Son.

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New Illustrated Edition of Pilgrim’s Progress – Justin Taylor

This looks like a great resource for family story time:

Steve Nichols: “This new Crossway book is excellent in every way. It is truly a beautiful book. Buy it for the whole family and read it together. Your kids will always remember it.”

From the publisher’s website: “This deluxe edition of Pilgrim’s Progress, brought to life in forty all-new, full-page, color illustrations by award-winning illustrator Mike Wimmer, takes readers on a visually stunning journey with protagonist Christian as he seeks the Celestial City.”

You can read chapter 3 online for free.

HT: Justin Taylor