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A devotional Easter

Before getting to the second part of our Devotional recommendations there is something on my heart concerning what we give our kids on Easter. As I said, devotionals are a great gift to put in their Easter baskets.

During the Lent season, I've always given out baskets with candy and done the egg hunt. I try to balance the bunny-ness of Easter with gifts that encourage their faith. I've given them games, books, and music on Easter that encourage their faith somehow. Miss Patty Cake's Resurrection Eggs we're absolutely instrumental in my house. Everyone needs them!

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One particular item that gets lambasted from the pulpits often is the chocolate cross. I've heard pastors say it trivializes the meaning of the cross. Although there may be some truth to it if you're a buttoned-up adult (which I'm sooo not by the way) I'm going to be bold here and say I heartily disagree- from the viewpoint of a kid anyway. If you ask a kid what Easter is about, they'll say, "The Easter Bunny hides eggs, and we get candy," and hopefully, "It's about Jesus."

Well, that's a little too mixed for me. If anything trivializes the cross, it's the Easter Bunny , in my mind. As Drew Carey said in in a speech, "Why do Christians need other people to sell our stuff? (I know! Drew Carey! Who knew? Right?)

I have to wonder why parents are so confused about how to get the real meaning of Easter or Christmas across to their child. It's pretty simple, really. Pick the most important thing and emphasize only that. I like chocolate crosses because I want my kids to know that the cross is what Easter's all about. Besides, chocolate is Awesome with a capital A! They can make the cross out of just about anything edible and I'd be all over it. Rant done. 'Nuff said.

IN THE, "FORK AND KNIFE," CATEGORY:

4) "Amon's Adventure, A Family Story For Easter," by Arnold Ytreeide is one in a series. Other titles in the series are, "Jotham's Journey, Bartholomew's Passage, and, "Tabitha's Travels." Some are for Easter and some are for Advent, however, "Amon's Adventure," is geared towards Easter.

"Amon's Adventure," is a great devotional story to prepare older kids for Easter. I say, "Older," because of the content. The writing is very mature in reading skill level. I f you have a child that isn't a stellar reader, expect to read this to them out loud.

The fork and knife rating is also due to the content of the story. The main character's father is falsely accused of stealing from the temple and is imprisoned, with a possible execution as his punishment. At one point Amon thinks his father has already been executed. Amon resists the idea of Jesus as the messiah and the book portrays his emotional struggles. None of this is bad, however it might be over the head of a five-year old or too distressing, especially the concept of a corrupt spiritual leader. What marks the change from elementary school reading to middle school reading is the amount of black and white vs. gray. Example Black and white would be the good guys and bad guys while the gray would be that all people are a mixture of good and bad. With that in mind, I heartily recommend this story/devotional once you've read a preview and decided it's appropriate for your child.

The format is a chapter a day, and they're time consuming chapters, expect 15-20 minutes of reading. The devotional comes at the end of each chapter and although they're short, they're very poignant. As a bonus this story will help your child imagine what it was like culturally when Jesus was alive.

5) Point of Grace, "Girls of Grace, Devotional and Bible Study Workbook" (There are two similar titles you may want to check out).

This is another one my daughter loved. It's great for girls who are at an age where boys are becoming an issue or will be shortly.

Three things set this book apart. The first is that it was written by women who have been, "famous," in the Christian music scene. Although Delaney didn't want to take the time to listen to every song they ever sang, it intrigued her that these women we're well known as the Christian girl group, Point of Grace.

Secondly, this devotional starts girls learning to read the word on their own by having them look up scripture and fill in the blanks. Yay! Feed yourself!

Third, the workbook aspect of this one really rocks! Girls answer lots of exploratory questions and get to know themselves better in relation to God's word as a result. Each of the four women from Point of Grace tackles one subject in the book; faith, family, friends, and boys.

The challenge of having to answer open ended questions will really help girls take ownership of their spiritual growth. Example: "What practical steps can you take to acknowledge God in your dating life?" Figuring anything out on your own is more likely to stick than if you're just told by someone else. There's a lot of good decision making to be done here. Girls can figure out what's important about love and relationships and set boundaries concerning boys and dating.

6) Using technology to find devotionals in email and app form:

I personally have had tremendous growth in my spiritual walk because of the teachings of Joseph Prince. One day while reading the daily devotional that comes in email form on my kindle I chuckled out loud at something he'd written. Ellis became curious and I decided to read the whole devotional to him. He liked it. He got it. It was simple enough for him but still challenging and expanding his thinking. Lightbulb! We decided to make my devotional his devotional too. Next Delaney overheard us reading aloud and listened in too. Now we all read that devotional, either together or separately each morning. Easy peasy. I often read aloud while they're both eating breakfast. I encourage you to take advantage of all the new ways there are for kids to enjoy God's word.

 

 

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Posted in Business Post Date 06/24/2018


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