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A FAMILY RESOURCE

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VOL. 3, ISSUE 6

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ENVIRONMENT

modeling “I see Christ in others and they can see Him in me.”

FAMILY FOOD TIME p. 4-5 GAME TIME p. 6 STORYTELLING p. 7 PRAYER p. 10 BLESSING p. 14


How 1 to 2 Use

It’s as easy as 1 ... 2 ... 3 ... Start by deciding on a day and time that works well for your entire family. It can be an evening, afternoon, or morning. Just commit to building this time into your family’s natural rhythm. (It’s usually best to build this time around a meal!)

this Resource

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Remember to HAVE FUN! Strive to make each gathering unique to your own family as you enjoy spending time with God and each other.

“C’mon guys, follow me,” bellowed my 3-year-old granddaughter Grayson. My son and I looked at each other and smiled, knowing she had no business being the “leader” because she had no idea where we were going.

Editors Note

At times, I find myself saying that same thing to God, “C’mon God, follow me!” I’m sure He smiles patiently, understanding that I too have no business being the “leader” because, just like Grayson, I have no idea where we are going and don’t know how to lead on my own. Living in the environment of MODELING we quickly recognize that we have a strong Leader. God not only knows where we are going but also sets the perfect example for us to imitate along the way. As we follow Christ, others will see Him leading us and recognize His actions in our lives—faith in the flesh!

© 2011 David C. Cook. All rights reserved.

HOMEFRONT | ENVIRONMENT | MODELING

Look through the HomeFront Monthly and see what stands out. Choose one or two experiences that you would like to incorporate into your family times this week. Don’t feel burdened to complete all the activities at once, but carefully select which ones will fit your family best. Each month of curriculum provides more than enough experiences to last you throughout the month.

In this issue of HomeFront Monthly you will find ideas and encouragement that will bring the environment of MODELING to light. Our hope is that the activities provided will help you model for your children the way that Christ modeled for us.

DEBBIE GUINN | EDITOR the Tru Team | Costa Mesa, CA

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ENVIRONMENT

MODELING Ephesians 5 says, “Be imitators of God as little children.” We know that children love to imitate, so what do we as parents want them to imitate? As a parent, one of my deepest desires is for my kids to imitate God’s Truth. MODELING, then, becomes an expression of that. We become living representatives of what that Truth means whether as a parent or a volunteer. We are people who have experienced God’s love through Christ and God’s forgiveness in the model of Christ. He was and is our living example. The environment of MODELING serves as a hands on example of what it means for both our children and us to put this faith into action. This month, as you model for your family what it looks like to live out a compelling and authentic faith, our prayer is that your view of God’s Truth and love would be on display for others.

VERSE OF THE MONTH Memorizing Scripture can be an incredible practice to engage in as a family. But words in and of themselves will not necessarily transform us; it is God’s Spirit in these words that transforms. We come to know God more when we are willing to open our hearts and receive His Holy Spirit through the words we memorize. Have fun with these verses and think of creative ways to invite your family to open up to God as they commit these verses to memory.

ELEMENTARY VERSE

Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things. Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me—put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you.” Philippians 4:8-9(NIV) PRESCHOOL/KINDER VERSE

MICHELLE ANTHONY FAMILY MINISTRY ARCHITECT the Tru Team | Costa Mesa, CA

© 2011 David C. Cook. All rights reserved.

HOMEFRONT | ENVIRONMENT | MODELING

Biblical content needs a practical living expression in order for it to be spiritually impacting. Knowing is the “what” while MODELING is the “how.” This environment serves as a hands-on example of what it means for children to put their faith into action.

“Jesus answered...Anyone who has seen Me, has seen the Father...” John 14:9b (NIV)

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Recipe:Chicken & Dumplings

It is said, “Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery.” What’s even more flattering is when your adult children want to replicate a piece of their childhood by creating a familiar family meal. Even though my daughter and her family live in a different state we don’t let that stop us from making our favorite recipes together. HOMEFRONT | ENVIRONMENT | MODELING

by Debbie Guinn

FAMILY FOOD TIME

Chicken & Dumplings Prep Time:15 min

Total Cooking Time: 1 hour

CHICKEN

DIRECTIONS

• 1 (2 1/2-pound) whole chicken (bone-in), cut into 8 pieces • 2 chicken bouillon cubes or broth • 2 (10 3/4-ounce) cans condensed cream of chicken soup

DUMPLINGS • 2 cups biscuit mix • 2/3-cups milk

To prepare the chicken: Place the chicken, bouillon or broth, and 4 quarts of water in a large pot and bring to a simmer over medium heat. Simmer the chicken until it is tender and the juices run clear, about 40 minutes. Remove the chicken from the pot and, when it is cool enough to handle, remove the skin and separate the meat from the bones. Return the chicken meat to the pot. Keep warm over low heat. Add the cream of chicken soup and bring to a boil over medium heat.

To prepare the dumplings: Stir ingredients until soft dough forms. Drop by spoonfuls into the boiling chicken mixture; reduce heat. Cook uncovered for 10 minutes then cover and cook for 10 more

To serve: Ladle chicken, gravy, and dumplings into bowls.

READY, SET, COOK!

© 2011 David C. Cook. All rights reserved.

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COOK WITH YOUR KIDS If you are caught between finding time to prepare meals and spending quality time with your children, try cooking with them. Children enjoy helping in the kitchen and often are more willing to eat foods they help prepare. It’s important that you give kitchen tasks appropriate for your child’s age. 2-YEAR-OLDS: BRING INGREDIENTS FROM ONE PLACE TO ANOTHER, WIPE TABLE TOPS, TEAR LETTUCE OR GREENS, BREAK CAULIFLOWER, PLAY WITH UTENSILS. 3-YEAR-OLDS: CAN DO WHAT 2-YEAR-OLDS DO, PLUS…WRAP POTATOES IN FOIL FOR BAKING, POUR LIQUIDS, MIX INGREDIENTS, SHAKE LIQUIDS IN A COVERED CONTAINER, SPREAD SOFT SPREADS, PLACE THINGS IN THE TRASH.

HOMEFRONT | ENVIRONMENT | MODELING

4-YEAR OLDS: CAN DO ALL THAT 2 AND 3 YEAR – OLDS DO, PLUS…MOVE HANDS TO FORM ROUND SHAPE, CUT PARSLEY OR GREEN ONIONS WITH DULL SCISSORS, MASH BANANAS WITH A FOR, SET TABLE 5 TO 6 –YEAR OLDS: CAN DO ALL THAT 2, 3, AND 4 – YEAR OLDS DO, PLUS…MEASURE INGREDIENTS, CUT WITH BLUNT KNIFE, USE AN EGGBEATER ELEMENTARY AGE CHILDREN: CAN DO ALL THAT THE PRE-SCHOOL AGE CHILDREN DO, PLUS… ASSEMBLE SANDWICHES, READ RECIPE DIRECTIONS TO YOU, ROLL DOUGH, GRATE CHEESE, CRACK AND BEAT EGGS AND MORE.

by Debbie Guinn

MIDDLE AND HIGH SCHOOL: INVOLVE THEM IN MEAL PLANNING, SHOPPING AND EVEN COMPLETELY PREPARING THE MEAL FOR YOUR FAMILY NIGHT.

FAMILY FOOD TIME Conversation Starters

1 Corinthians 11:1 says, “Follow my example, as I follow the example of Christ.” Get your children talking…Pose this question to your family and let everyone offer an answer.

“How do you see Jesus in me?” Maybe your preschooler notices that mommy consistently shows love to them. Or, your older child recognizes that daddy faithfully helps with homework and patiently guides them, etc.

© 2011 David C. Cook. All rights reserved.

You may need to guide them at first but this will be a fun family exercise. Make it into a fun daily

game—looking for ways that you see Jesus in each family member and recognizing that those are actions you would like to follow so that others can see Jesus in you!

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by Erika Abdelatif

GAME TIME One of the best ways to connect with your family is to let your guard down and have fun together. This game provides that opportunity while also reinforcing the way that Jesus modeled for us to live. Often times people watch our lives much like the way people watch a fish swimming around in a bowl. This game offers the opportunity to be the “fish” while others are watching, seeing if they can guess by our actions who we are serving and modeling our lives after…Christ!

OLDER & YOUNGER KIDS Divide into two teams. If your family is small this could be a great opportunity to invite friends, neighbors or extended family to join in the fun. Gather paper and cut into three strips for each family member playing the game. Hand the three strips of paper to each player. Without allowing anyone else to peek, each person will write different ways Jesus calls us to live. (For younger children you will need an older team member to help out.) For example, “Love one another” or “Share with those in need.” Once you’re finished writing, fold the strips in half, place them in a large bowl, and mix them up.

Now you’re ready! • Sit in a circle alternating team members. • Set a timer for one minute. • Have the first player draw a strip from the bowl and read it to himself. (For younger children you will need an older team member to help out.) • Start the timer. • The player must explain what is on the strip of paper without using any of the words written on the paper. • As they do their best to explain, their teammates will shout out their guesses. • Each time a team guesses correctly, the player will grab another strip. (Make sure they don’t put their strip back into the bowl after it has been used!) • Continue until the timer goes off. Then, pass the bowl onto the next player in the circle and continue playing until each paper strip has been used. • At the end of that round tally the number of paper strips each team completed.

FAMILY GAME NIGHT!

© 2011 David C. Cook. All rights reserved.

HOMEFRONT | ENVIRONMENT | MODELING

Fish Bowl!

• Put all of the papers back into the bowl, and begin again. However, on the second round, you may only act out the words on the strip—without speaking! Continue on exactly like the previous round until all the strips are gone. On the third round, each person may only use one word to describe the word or phrase listed on the strip, and they may only say it once. Tally your team’s points after each round; whichever team successfully guesses the most words or phrases wins!

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My friends Mike and Tina have their hands full with two small children. The days get busy between changing diapers, playing with dolls, calming tears, and running their chaotic household Though life is often crazy, they still believe that as parents, their primary role is to model a living and active faith to their children. For them, one tangible way to show their faith to their children is through prayer. Mike and Tina believe that praying for their girls and MODELING a prayer life is essential in parenting. Before they eat, they pray. When they celebrate something, they pray. When someone feels sick or is having a bad day, they model to their daughters how to lay hands on one another and pray. They want their girls to know from a young age that not only do they serve a God who listens to their prayers He is the God who answers them too. Mike and Tina wonder if their prayers make a

difference in the lives of their children. Do our children understand what prayer means? Do our children know who God is? As parents they may not know the answer to these questions, however they continue to be faithful, believing that in His perfect timing, God will reveal Himself to each of their girls. Take for instance the recollection of one night, as Tina walked by her 2-year-old’s room, she peeked through the crack of the door to watch her daughter. She was playing with her dolls and laying them in their dolly-beds—a common nighttime ritual. To her surprise, Tina saw something she had never seen before. As she placed her dolls in their beds,

she began to pray for them. She prayed in “Jesus’ name” that God would heal them from being sick. Tina smiled to herself as she watched this happen. Her daughter understood the power of prayer. She was demonstrating the prayers of faith that she had seen her parents model countless times and that transferred to her own life. Though it might have only been a prayer of healing for a doll, this act revealed to Tina so much more. She witnessed firsthand that her daughter—whether pretending or in real life—believed in a God who healed. And her daughter knew that she had the freedom to approach God with the things that were on her heart. She’d seen her parents model a life of prayer and now, she too, possessed that same belief.

.... MODELING A PRAYER LIFE IS ESSENTIAL IN PARENTING

© 2011 David C. Cook. All rights reserved.

HOMEFRONT | ENVIRONMENT | MODELING

by Rae Lynn Lott

STORYTELLING

Imitation is all about seeing something, a character trait, a style, and desiring that for your life. When we model a living and active faith to our children, we are giving them the best possible example to emulate. When we see things modeled to us, our desire grows to become what we see. It’s inevitable.

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by Matt Barnes

GOD’S WORD Moses & Joshua

In Exodus, we see God reintroducing Himself to His people through the leadership of Moses. The Israelites, God’s people, had been slaves in Egypt for over 400 years. (As a point of comparison, the United States has only existed for just over 230 years.

God used Moses to model His power and care for His people as He led them out of Egypt. He also used Moses to bring His commandments to His people so that they would know the best way to live

with others and worship Him as the one true God. He led His people by a pillar of fire at night and a pillar of cloud by day as He led them to the land He had promised. When God determined that they weren’t ready to enter that land, due to their own fears and lack of trust, He provided their every meal for 40 years as they wandered through the wilderness. An entire generation was raised completely dependent on Him. After Moses died, Joshua took his place leading God’s people. Just as He had used Moses powerfully, God used Joshua to continue to teach His people who He is and to model how we should respond to the living God. As Moses followed God, Joshua watched Moses’ example. When Moses was no longer around, Joshua was able to draw upon Moses’ example and lead God’s people.

HEAR IT When Joshua finally led God’s people into the Promised Land, God quickly showed that it would be HE who would give this land to His people. The first city that Joshua and the Israelites came to was Jericho. Read Joshua 6:1-20 as a family. Here are a few things to think about… • Did God’s instructions for Joshua and the Israelites make sense as a battle plan? (Verses 3-5)

GOD USED MOSES TO MODEL HIS POWER AND CARE FOR HIS PEOPLE...

© 2011 David C. Cook. All rights reserved.

• Did Joshua question God about these seemingly crazy battle plans? (Verses 6-7) • Who really fought and won the battle of Jericho? (Verse 20) (HINT: do you really think that yelling at a wall will win a war?)

HOMEFRONT | ENVIRONMENT | MODELING

Think about how much our culture has been changed and influenced in that time and how much more the Israelites must have been influenced by being enslaved by a foreign culture for so long.) God came to Moses and began a journey of discovery and relationship between He and His people that would serve as a model for generations to come.

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CONTINUED FROM STORYTELLING, PG. 8

God used Joshua to model his trust in the Lord for all of His people. God had promised that HE would give His people this land. He told Joshua to do something that didn’t make any sense. Joshua modeled the proper response to God by obeying Him and trusting that He would win the battle. Through the absurdity of walking around a wall and yelling, God showed the Israelites that He was faithful to do what He said He would.

HOMEFRONT | ENVIRONMENT | MODELING

DO IT We know that marching around walls and yelling at them does not make them fall. (Go ahead…Try it!) Obviously, God was the one who fought and won the battle of Jericho for His people. This must have been awe-inspiring for Joshua! He didn’t have to come up with the perfect battle plan or be the perfect leader. He simply had to follow God and trust that He would fight his battles. We can be distracted by many thing and forget how faithful and trustworthy God is. Joshua modeled for his people (and models for us) how to respond to our trustworthy and faithful God. As a family, talk about the things you’ve learned from one another. • Parents, what have you learned from your kids? • Kids, share what have you learned from your parents or your siblings. Now, go a little deeper. • What things have been modeled to you that may have been unintentional by the person modeling? • Are there things you saw someone do that perhaps they didn’t even know they taught you (good or bad)? This is what MODELING is all about. God uses us to show others who He is. Take some time to pray

and ask God to show you how He wants to teach others through your family.

© 2011 David C. Cook. All rights reserved.

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One tradition that is anticipated in our home is our Sunday Family Movie Night. Popcorn is made on the stove with butter and salt (the old fashioned way) and then we move all the furniture so it feels like a movie theater. Next, we find a movie that is suitable and enjoyable for our family of six to watch and nestle down for a couple hours in a sea of blankets and snacks. Other traditions include that which we observe in Scripture. Prayer can be one of those traditions. When my son was about five years old, at the end of a family prayer he said with passion “…and all God’s people say? AMEN!” As we all joined in with our hearty “AMEN,” a new tradition in our family prayer was birthed. Now, at every family gathering, every meal, and even during daytime prayers, it is not uncommon for our family to close with this phrase. This speaks to the simple way we can start a new tradition in our daily family life.

Jesus started a new tradition with His own disciples and modeled for them a way to pray. This is known as The Lord’s Prayer. This prayer connected them to each other, as well as modeled a way for others to approach God, even until this day.

HOMEFRONT | ENVIRONMENT | MODELING

by Amy Palmderton

PRAYER & TRADITIONS

As a family, one way to start a new tradition is to find or create a prayer that you can all pray together. This can become a beautiful backdrop to your family’s spiritual life. Many ancient prayers have been modeled from one generation to the next and can be absorbed into your family practices.

Traditional prayers do not have to be stagnant and rehearsed. This ancient tradition of practiced Hello Daddy! We want to know you. And be close to you. Please show us how. Make everything in the world right again. And in our hearts, too. Do what is best—just like you do in heaven, And please do it down here, too. Please give us everything we need today. Forgive us for doing wrong, for hurting you. Forgive us just as we forgive other people When they hurt us. Rescue us! We need you. We don’t want to keep running away and hiding from you. Keep us safe from our enemies. You’re strong, God. You can do whatever you want. You are in charge. Now and forever and for always! We think you’re great! Amen!

© 2011 David C. Cook. All rights reserved.

prayer connects us to our greater community of faith and provides us with a way to model our intentional life with God. Below find a simple example of The Lord’s Prayer— perhaps a starting point for your family: Excerpt from The Jesus Storybook Bible - Zonderkids.

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From the earliest age, my children loved music. Though we went to a church where we had the option to leave them in the nursery, we would often choose to keep them with us as we worshipped in song. This became a special time for our family. Before they could speak, our kids would watch intently as we closed our eyes or raised our hands as we sang. At times, they would imitate the things they saw us doing. I loved to see them echoing my movements or the posture of my heart. But more importantly, I realized that they were learning how to worship God through music. They were able to see their parents connecting with Him in a way that they would not have been able to experience had we not brought them into church with us. This month, invite your child into your own worship time. Where is it that you worship God in your day-to-day routine?

WE OFTEN THINK OF WORSHIP AS ONLY SINGING BUT WE CAN WORSHIP GOD IN MANY DIFFERENT WAYS: PRAYER, SILENCE, ART, DANCE, GIVING, SHARING, AND THANKSGIVING JUST TO NAME A FEW. MAKE PLANS FOR YOUR FAMILY WORSHIP TIME BUT PREPARE YOURSELF TO HOLD THESE PLANS LOOSELY IF THE HOLY SPIRIT LEADS YOU IN A DIFFERENT DIRECTION.

• Is it during your quiet time with your morning cup of coffee? If so, offer your child a cup of hot chocolate and ask them to join you as you read through His Word. • Is it through giving to others? Then ask your son or daughter to come with you as you bring a meal to a new mom and include them as you pray for the family. • Choose a Sunday to include your child in your corporate worship experience at your congregation. If they are unable to read, assist them in reading the words from the screen or from the hymnal so they may sing along with you. By MODELING these worship experiences for your child, he or she will learn how to worship God in their own daily experiences as well.

© 2011 David C. Cook. All rights reserved.

HOMEFRONT | ENVIRONMENT | MODELING

by Alyson Crockett

WORSHIP

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by Kayla Adams & Debbie Guinn

CREATE Modeling Dough

God made us. and He sent His Son who is the perfect model for us to follow. Colossians 1:15-20 tells us that Jesus is the perfect representation of the Father. The more time we spend with Jesus the more we will be like Him. As we follow Jesus we can be a model to others.

INSTRUCTIONS:

SUPPLIES: *** Makes enough dough for about four colors. • 3-5 small plastic storage bags (depending on how many colors you want to make) • food coloring • 2 cups of unbleached flour

• Mix all of the ingredients in a large pot on the stove. Stir together over medium heat for about 5 minutes or until a doughy consistency forms. Turn off heat, and let dough sit for about 20 minutes to cool. • Once the dough is cool enough to touch, separate into plastic storage bags. Each bag will be for a different color.

• 2 cups of water • 3 Tablespoon of cooking oil

• Add food coloring and close the bag. Allow children to help by kneading the dough until the food coloring has been thoroughly mixed. (You can model how to do it.) The more dye, the more saturated the colors you will have! Check out the color chart below to mix your own colors!

• 1 teaspoon cream of tartar • 1 cup of salt

JUST THE BASICS

• Keep dough refrigerated after use.

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...I see Christ in others and they can see Him in me.

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© 2011 David C. Cook. All rights reserved.

HOMEFRONT | ENVIRONMENT | MODELING

This month, use this recipe to make MODELING clay and together create an image of each person in your family. Put them in a prominent place in your home and let them serve as a reminder that others are watching you and your actions—I see Christ in others and they can see Him in me.

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by Roger Tarabasi

MARRIAGE

“Do what I say, not what I do? – Messages that don’t make sense” When I was 7 years old I remember my dad telling me, “Do what I say, not what I do”. I remember even as a child thinking, “This doesn’t make sense: Why would my dad be able to do something and then tell me not to?” Let me give you a list of things that I would like you to consider:

HOMEFRONT | ENVIRONMENT | MODELING

• Showing patience with your spouse when you disagree. • Finding “win-win” solutions to problems. • Dating your spouse on a regular basis. • Showing affection to your spouse in front of others. • Praying with your spouse. • Going to church together (not fighting on the way to and from). • Eating meals together as much as possible. • Showing your spouse love through, acts of service, physical touch, and acts of service. • Hearing the two of you affirm one another on a regular basis. • Seeing you submit to one another in loving ways without resentment. I remember him getting mad and yelling at either me or my sister but then telling me I shouldn’t yell when I got mad. Dad would make us go to church but he would miss many times. I remember thinking, this doesn’t make sense – and it didn’t. But as I got older I found myself being more like what I saw my dad do than what I heard my dad say.

• Reading your Bibles and talking about what you are reading.

I Corinthians 4:16 Paul says, “Therefore I urge you to imitate me”. He goes on in Chapter 11 verse 1, “Imitate me, just as I also imitate Christ”, and again in Philippians 3:17, “Brethren, join in following my example, and note those who so walk, as you have us for a pattern”. Research has confirmed this truth. Children “attend to, respond to, and follow the behavior of models more that verbal instruction or demands. Kids do what we do, not what we say. They watch us. Our behaviors get imbedded onto their brain pathways. Eventually they do as we do, not as we say.

• Laughing and having fun as a couple and a family. Most of us will have to be intentional if we are going to pass on to our children something more than we received from our families. As a couple look at the list above and check off three of the items you feel you are doing fairly well at. Give your partner a “High 5” and let them know you appreciate them. Find 2 items from the list above that you would like to see improve as a couple. Don’t let it turn into a “blame and shame” experience. Share a couple of

If you are married and realize your children will model what they see in your marriage – what will they be MODELING when they get married?

succeed.

© 2011 David C. Cook. All rights reserved.

• Going on mission trips. • Reaching out to your neighbors as a couple. • Listening and sharing your feelings in loving caring ways.

specific ideas of how you might be able to move forward in the upcoming week to take the next step. Take a small step and celebrate it when you

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A blessing can be a prayer of commission, a Bible passage or words of encouragement. As your children are blessed, tell them that they have the opportunity to also be a blessing to others. Encourage them to freely give away to others the joy and love they have received from God. Blessings can also be spoken over a child for the purpose of declaring God’s protection, joy and wisdom over him. HOMEFRONT | ENVIRONMENT | MODELING

by Erika Abdelatif

BLESSING

THIS MONTH TAKE TIME TO BLESS YOUR CHILDREN BY READING EPHESIANS 5:1-2 OVER THEM.

“FOLLOW GOD’S EXAMPLE, THEREFORE, AS DEARLY LOVED CHILDREN AND WALK IN THE WAY OF LOVE, JUST AS CHRIST LOVED US AND GAVE HIMSELF UP FOR US AS A FRAGRANT OFFERING AND SACRIFICE TO GOD.” EPHESIANS 5:1-2 14

After blessing your children take some time to pray together. Have your children ask God to help them “walk in the way of love” and be a blessing to their siblings. Then discuss together what is one way they can model Christ’s love in your family this day.

HomeFront Weekly: Don’t forget to grab your HomeFront weekly’s when picking up your kids from service. There is a preschool & elementary version to choose from. These weekly’s will help prepare your children for the weekend ahead at church.

© 2011 David C. Cook. All rights reserved.


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