Signs of Spring

On Monday I shared with you my joyous moment of discovering robin eggs in a nest in front of my house. Today I want to encourage you to take part in the spiritual practice of mindfulness by taking a mindfulness walk with your children.

We’ve talked about mindfulness, or noticing, walks before. We’ve noticed the Big and Beautiful parts of creation as well as the Teeny Tiny parts of creation. For this walk I want you to notice the SIGNS of SPRING!

As you begin this walk with your child remind them of noticing walks you’ve taken in the past. If you’ve never taken a mindfulness walk it’s a good idea to introduce to your child what you will be doing. Tell your child that today we are going to look around and notice SIGNS of SPRING in the world around us. Don’t restrict your child’s noticings. If they say that construction on a new house is a SIGN of SPRING, say something like, “Construction is often seen in the spring time because the weather is warm enough for the workers to be outside.” You may even want to offer your child a way to document the SIGNS of SPRING they notice. They could use a camera to take a picture, or carry a notebook to record what they see using words or drawings.

When you return home discuss your noticings and how God plays a part in all of it. Say a prayer together thanking God for the SIGNS of SPRING you noticed together and asking God to open your eyes and help you notice more SIGNS of SPRING throughout the week.

{Monica}

PS: If you take a noticing walk with your child I’d love to hear about your experience! Leave a comment and let me know all about it!

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Sheep and Shepherds

Do you have an animal in your home? What kinds of animals do you or most of your friends have? Allow children to answer. Does anyone have any sheep at home? Well during Jesus time many people had sheep.

Jesus liked to tell stories to teach people lessons. So since most people he knew had sheep he used a story about sheep to help them learn something important. Let’s read to find out what he told them. Read John 10:11-18 from Ralph Milton’s Lectionary Story Bible Year B. I want you to really remember the story Jesus is telling so I’m going to read it again, and you are going to help me act it out. Choose someone to be Jesus and a few children to be sheep. I’m going to read the scripture again and I want you to act out what you hear. Re-read the scripture pausing to give directions as needed (stop before the wolf comes). Choose someone to be the wolf. You could use another child, or it might be fun to randomly call on an adult for the congregation. Continue reading through the shepherd chasing away the wolf. Now choose someone to look after the sheep that is not the shepherd (have the shepherd sit down). Again you could choose a child or randomly call on someone from the congregation to take that role. Continue reading through the caretaker running away and the wolf catching a sheep. Have the wolf and the caretaker sit down and bring back the shepherd. Continue reading. Pause when the shepherd knows the sheep by name and ask the child/shepherd to call the names of the people pretending to be sheep. As you continue reading pause to give directions for the children to act out as needed. Once you have finished the scripture have your helpers sit back down.

That was really fun to act out the scripture wasn’t it?! What did we learn about shepherds? Allow children to answer. Jesus used this story to explain about his love for us. What did the scripture teach us about Jesus? Allow children to answer. That’s right! Jesus is always there watching over us, he knows our name, Jesus would do anything for us…because he loves us so much! How lucky we are to have a shepherd like that in our lives!

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Every Wednesday I share a lesson based on the lectionary. These lessons are meant to be used for a children’s moment (aka children’s sermon, children’s liturgy, children’s church, etc), sunday school, or even as a family devotion in your own home.

I have taken the lesson above and written it into a lesson plan format. I have also added a Respond and Extend section to the downloadable lesson. These are additional ideas for the children to respond to the main lesson and then an extension activity for them to do at a later time. The extension activity includes a handout to send home with directions.

All of this can be yours for less than a dollar!! Just click the Add to Cart button to download your copy today! Payments can be made with Paypal, Google Checkout, or you can enter your credit card as a Paypal guest (no account required). Once you have made your purchase an email will be sent to you with download directions.
Add to Cart
Cost: $0.99

Please note: all images and PDF files are my creation. You may use them in your home and with your church family. Please give credit to ChildhoodSpirituality.com. You may not sell these items in part or in full, or in any way claim them as your own. Thank you!

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Mindfulness Monday {New Life}

The other day I was taking photos of signs of spring for a scrapbooking project I was working on. I had a handful of photos but needed a few more. As I was taking a photo of my son with his baseball gear a bird flew out of a nearby bush. Which reminded me that there was a nest in that bush. Knowing that Mama bird was gone for the moment I stuck my camera in the bush to grab a photo of the nest. Now the nest was too high for me to see in so I held my camera at arms length and snapped. When I pulled it out to check the picture I discovered that the nest contained bright blue robins eggs! My heart seriously went pitter patter with joy! How precious and special to see the beginnings of new life. It makes me want to go out everyday and check for baby birds. I don’t want to scare Mama bird permanently away from the nest so I refrain, but I listen daily for their little chirps.

As the busyness of hurring from soccer practice to baseball practice to piano to games and trying to make sure everyone does homework and eats in between takes over my life this spring, I’m grateful for this little moment I had to pause and enjoy the beauty of creation!

{Monica}

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Say Thank You

God’s love flows not only when you give but also when you receive.  Encourage your child to say “thank you” when they receive.  Sit down together to write a thank you note to someone.  Perhaps for a gift given, but also consider writing a thank you to someone who is important to you.  Tell that person how and why they are special and thank them for the gift of themselves.

{Monica}

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Share a Meal

What is your favorite meal? Allow children to answer. In your family do you ever have any special meals? Maybe for a holiday or a special occasion? What makes those meals special? Allow children to answer. In my family…(share a personal story about a special meal).

In our scripture story today the disciples share a special meal with a special guest. Let’s read to find out what happened. Read Luke 24:36b-48 from Ralph Milton’s Lectionary Story Bible Year B. What were Jesus and the disciples doing during this story? Does anyone remember? Allow children to answer that they were eating together. Sharing a meal together and talking about God has been a Christian tradition for a very long time. Can you think of any times that we eat together here at church? Allow children to answer. They may share about potlucks, pancake breakfasts, or other meals the congregation participates in. If no one brings up communion say, Do we ever eat here during the worship service? Hopefully children will recognize that communion is also sharing a meal. Sharing in communion is one way that we remember Jesus. It makes us feel like he is right next to use sharing the bread too! It helps us remember that Jesus is alive in us! I bet the disciples felt that way too when they shared a meal.

During their meal Jesus talked with the disciples. What message did Jesus have for them? What did he want them to go do? Allow children to answer that he wanted them to share the stories of Jesus with other people. Were the disciples excited to go out and share the stories of Jesus? Allow children to answer. Sometimes people, especially grownups, worry what our friends will think if we start talking about Jesus. But Jesus tells us that God will help us feel strong enough to share the stories of Jesus! I think it’s easiest to tell the stories of Jesus when we are sharing a meal…just like the disciples did. Invite a friend to eat with you and take that opportunity to share about Jesus!

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Every Wednesday I share a lesson based on the lectionary. These lessons are meant to be used for a children’s moment (aka children’s sermon, children’s liturgy, children’s church, etc), sunday school, or even as a family devotion in your own home.

I have taken the lesson above and written it into a lesson plan format. I have also added a Respond and Extend section to the downloadable lesson. These are additional ideas for the children to respond to the main lesson and then an extension activity for them to do at a later time. The extension activity includes a handout to send home with directions.

All of this can be yours for less than a dollar!! Just click the Add to Cart button to download your copy today! Payments can be made with Paypal, Google Checkout, or you can enter your credit card as a Paypal guest (no account required). Once you have made your purchase an email will be sent to you with download directions.
Add to Cart
Cost: $0.99

Please note: all images and PDF files are my creation. You may use them in your home and with your church family. Please give credit to ChildhoodSpirituality.com. You may not sell these items in part or in full, or in any way claim them as your own. Thank you!

————————————————————————————————-

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All About You…

If you’ve been reading my blog, especially my Mindfulness Monday posts, you already know a bit about me! If you want to know more you can read the About Me page. But today I want to know about YOU!

I want to know…who are you? How would you describe yourself?

I want to know…why are you here? What interests you on this blog?

I want to know…who are the children in your life? What ages and stages are the children in your life?

Leave me a comment and tell me all about you! I really want to know more about you!

{Monica}

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Seeing is Believing

Did you know I can lift up _____________ (a child’s name) using just a plastic bag? Seriously! I can! …Don’t believe me? Do you need me to prove it? Place plastic bag so the top third is hanging off the side of a table (be sure the bag has no holes). Put a heavy book on top of the bag and then have a child sit on the book. Hold the top of the bag to create a neck like a balloon and blow into it. The child will be lifted up by the air blown into the bag. Now do you believe me?

Our scripture story today is about a man named Thomas. Thomas had trouble believing things he couldn’t see. Let’s read to find out more about Thomas’ story. Read John 14:1-7 and John 20:19-29 from Ralph Milton’s Lectionary Story Bible Year B. Thomas asked lots of questions. Do any of you ever ask lots of questions at home or at school or even at church? There is nothing wrong with questions! Some people got frustrated with all of Thomas’ questions (I bet that has happened to some of you too), but not Jesus! He didn’t mind Thomas’ questions at all.

After Jesus died Thomas’ friends told him that Jesus was alive again, but Thomas had trouble believing it. He needed to see to believe. Today we know many stories about the love of Jesus. But we don’t get to see to believe. We have to believe without seeing. Remember when I lifted up __________? What was it that lifted him/her up? Allow children to answer that it was air that lifted the child up. Can you see the air? But you know it’s there, right? How do you know? Allow children to answer (they feel it, they can see it blow things, etc) And the air is strong! It was strong enough to lift up a person! You can’t see the air, but you can see how the air affects everything around it! We can’t see Jesus, but we can see how the love of Jesus is always around us. It affects everyone and everything!

————————————————————————————————

Every Wednesday I share a lesson based on the lectionary. These lessons are meant to be used for a children’s moment (aka children’s sermon, children’s liturgy, children’s church, etc), sunday school, or even as a family devotion in your own home.

I have taken the lesson above and written it into a lesson plan format. I have also added a Respond and Extend section to the downloadable lesson. These are additional ideas for the children to respond to the main lesson and then an extension activity for them to do at a later time. The extension activity includes a handout to send home with directions.

All of this can be yours for less than a dollar!! Just click the Add to Cart button to download your copy today! Payments can be made with Paypal, Google Checkout, or you can enter your credit card as a Paypal guest (no account required). Once you have made your purchase an email will be sent to you with download directions.
Add to Cart
Cost: $0.99

Please note: all images and PDF files are my creation. You may use them in your home and with your church family. Please give credit to ChildhoodSpirituality.com. You may not sell these items in part or in full, or in any way claim them as your own. Thank you!

————————————————————————————————- 

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Mindfulness Monday {Family}

There’s not much better than spending time together with family. Love getting to see my boys playing with their cousins! We are so blessed!

{Monica}

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