Sunday, March 11, 2018

Bible Verses for Voice Of Truth

Bible Verses for Voice Of Truth by Steven Curtis Chapman and Mark Hall |

I have been reading through the Bible this year and have been noticing a pattern that starts back in the Garden of Eden. There is a choice repeatedly laid before mankind. Choose to listen, obey, and trust God's voice or to listen to other voices (including your own). Choose to walk in the ways of God or to go your own way.

There are several times that Israel's leaders have called them to make this decision. 
Moses admonishes Israel before he died and they entered the promised land under Joshua in Deuteronomy 30:19-20 “I call heaven and earth to witness against you today, that I have set before you life and death, the blessing and the curse. So choose life in order that you may live, you and your descendants, by loving the Lord your God, by obeying His voice, and by holding fast to Him; for this is your life and the length of your days, that you may live in the land which the Lord swore to your fathers, to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, to give them.”
Similarly, when Joshua is old he also urges Israel to follow the Lord in Joshua 24:14-15 “Now, therefore, fear the Lord and serve Him in sincerity and truth; and put away the gods which your fathers served beyond the River and in Egypt, and serve the Lord. If it is disagreeable in your sight to serve the Lord, choose for yourselves today whom you will serve: whether the gods which your fathers served which were beyond the River, or the gods of the Amorites in whose land you are living; but as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.” 
Elijah called to the people to choose God over Baal in 1 Kings 18:21 Elijah came near to all the people and said, “How long will you hesitate between two opinions? If the Lord is God, follow Him; but if Baal, follow him.” But the people did not answer him a word. 
We are similarly called to follow the Lord rather than go our own way by repenting and believing in Christ and His death for our sins.
Jesus said in Matthew 7:13-14 Enter through the narrow gate; for the gate is wide and the way is broad that leads to destruction, and there are many who enter through it. For the gate is small and the way is narrow that leads to life, and there are few who find it.”
Matthew 16:24 Then Jesus said to His disciples, “If anyone wishes to come after Me, he must deny himself, and take up his cross and follow Me.
Acts 17:30-31 Therefore having overlooked the times of ignorance, God is now declaring to men that all people everywhere should repent, because He has fixed a day in which He will judge the world in righteousness through a Man whom He has appointed, having furnished proof to all men by raising Him from the dead.”
Paul recounts in Acts 26:12-20 “While so engaged as I was journeying to Damascus with the authority and commission of the chief priests, at midday, O King, I saw on the way a light from heaven, brighter than the sun, shining all around me and those who were journeying with me. And when we had all fallen to the ground, I heard a voice saying to me in the Hebrew dialect, ‘Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting Me? It is hard for you to kick against the goads.’ And I said, ‘Who are You, Lord?’ And the Lord said, ‘I am Jesus whom you are persecuting. But get up and stand on your feet; for this purpose I have appeared to you, to appoint you a minister and a witness not only to the things which you have seen, but also to the things in which I will appear to you; rescuing you from the Jewish people and from the Gentiles, to whom I am sending you, to open their eyes so that they may turn from darkness to light and from the dominion of Satan to God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins and an inheritance among those who have been sanctified by faith in Me.’ So, King Agrippa, I did not prove disobedient to the heavenly vision, but kept declaring both to those of Damascus first, and also at Jerusalem and then throughout all the region of Judea, and even to the Gentiles, that they should repent and turn to God, performing deeds appropriate to repentance.”
Then, as believers, we are also told to listen to God's voice and follow in His way:
Jesus says in John 10:27-28 My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me; and I give eternal life to them, and they will never perish; and no one will snatch them out of My hand.”

Voice of Truth

by Steven Curtis Chapman and Mark Hall

Verse 1:
Oh what I would do to have
The kind of faith it takes
To climb out of this boat I'm in
Onto the crashing waves
To step out of my comfort zone
Into the realm of the unknown where Jesus is
And He's holding out His hand
Matthew 14:23-29a After He had sent the crowds away, He went up on the mountain by Himself to pray; and when it was evening, He was there alone. But the boat was already a long distance from the land, battered by the waves; for the wind was contrary. And in the fourth watch of the night He came to them, walking on the sea. When the disciples saw Him walking on the sea, they were terrified, and said, “It is a ghost!” And they cried out in fear. But immediately Jesus spoke to them, saying, “Take courage, it is I; do not be afraid.” Peter said to Him, “Lord, if it is You, command me to come to You on the water.” And He said, “Come!”
But the waves are calling out my name
And they laugh at me
Reminding me of all the times
I've tried before and failed
The waves they keep on telling me
Time and time again. "Boy, you'll never win!"
"You'll never win!"
Matthew 14:29b-30 And Peter got out of the boat, and walked on the water and came toward Jesus. But seeing the wind, he became frightened, and beginning to sink, he cried out, “Lord, save me!” 

But the voice of truth tells me a different story
The voice of truth says, "Do not be afraid!"
Psalm 27:1 The Lord is my light and my salvation; Whom shall I fear? The Lord is the defense of my life; Whom shall I dread?
God said in Isaiah 41:10 Do not fear, for I am with you; Do not anxiously look about you, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, surely I will help you, surely I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.’
The voice of truth says, "This is for My glory"
Ephesians 1:14 to the end that we who were the first to hope in Christ would be to the praise of His glory.
Out of all the voices calling out to me
I will choose to listen and believe the voice of truth
Psalm 95:7-8 For He is our God, and we are the people of His pasture and the sheep of His hand. Today, if you would hear His voice, do not harden your hearts, as at Meribah, as in the day of Massah in the wilderness,

Verse 2:
Oh what I would do to have
The kind of strength it takes to stand before a giant
With just a sling and a stone
Surrounded by the sound of a thousand warriors
Shaking in their armor
Wishing they'd have had the strength to stand
1 Samuel 17:31-41 When the words which David spoke were heard, they told them to Saul, and he sent for him. David said to Saul, “Let no man’s heart fail on account of him; your servant will go and fight with this Philistine.” Then Saul said to David, “You are not able to go against this Philistine to fight with him; for you are but a youth while he has been a warrior from his youth.” But David said to Saul, “Your servant was tending his father’s sheep. When a lion or a bear came and took a lamb from the flock, I went out after him and attacked him, and rescued it from his mouth; and when he rose up against me, I seized him by his beard and struck him and killed him. Your servant has killed both the lion and the bear; and this uncircumcised Philistine will be like one of them, since he has taunted the armies of the living God.” And David said, “The Lord who delivered me from the paw of the lion and from the paw of the bear, He will deliver me from the hand of this Philistine.” And Saul said to David, “Go, and may the Lord be with you.” Then Saul clothed David with his garments and put a bronze helmet on his head, and he clothed him with armor. David girded his sword over his armor and tried to walk, for he had not tested them. So David said to Saul, “I cannot go with these, for I have not tested them.” And David took them off. He took his stick in his hand and chose for himself five smooth stones from the brook, and put them in the shepherd’s bag which he had, even in his pouch, and his sling was in his hand; and he approached the Philistine. Then the Philistine came on and approached David, with the shield-bearer in front of him.
But the giant's calling out my name
And he laughs at me
Reminding me of all the times
I've tried before and failed
The giant keeps on telling me
Time and time again. "Boy, you'll never win!"
"You'll never win!"
1 Samuel 17:42-44 When the Philistine looked and saw David, he disdained him; for he was but a youth, and ruddy, with a handsome appearance. The Philistine said to David, “Am I a dog, that you come to me with sticks?” And the Philistine cursed David by his gods. The Philistine also said to David, “Come to me, and I will give your flesh to the birds of the sky and the beasts of the field.”

But the stone was just the right size
To put the giant on the ground
1 Samuel 17:45-48 Then David said to the Philistine, “You come to me with a sword, a spear, and a javelin, but I come to you in the name of the Lord of hosts, the God of the armies of Israel, whom you have taunted. This day the Lord will deliver you up into my hands, and I will strike you down and remove your head from you. And I will give the dead bodies of the army of the Philistines this day to the birds of the sky and the wild beasts of the earth, that all the earth may know that there is a God in Israel, and that all this assembly may know that the Lord does not deliver by sword or by spear; for the battle is the Lord’s and He will give you into our hands.” Then it happened when the Philistine rose and came and drew near to meet David, that David ran quickly toward the battle line to meet the Philistine. And David put his hand into his bag and took from it a stone and slung it, and struck the Philistine on his forehead. And the stone sank into his forehead, so that he fell on his face to the ground.
And the waves they don't seem so high
From on top of them lookin' down
Matthew 14:31-33 Immediately Jesus stretched out His hand and took hold of him, and said to him, “You of little faith, why did you doubt?” When they got into the boat, the wind stopped. And those who were in the boat worshiped Him, saying, “You are certainly God’s Son!”
I will soar with the wings of eagles
Isaiah 40:31 Yet those who wait for the Lord will gain new strength; They will mount up with wings like eagles, they will run and not get tired, they will walk and not become weary.
When I stop and listen to the sound of Jesus singing over me
Zephaniah 3:17 The Lord your God is in your midst, a mighty one who will save; he will rejoice over you with gladness; he will quiet you by his love; he will exult over you with loud singing.

Thursday, March 8, 2018

Bible Verses for That Was Then, This Is Now

That Was Then, This Is Now By Josh Wilson and Ben Glover |

It is clear from the Bible that we are transformed when are saved through faith. There are three types of transformations for the believer. I like to call them the three tenses of salvation 
  • Justification - All that happens the moment that a person believes the gospel. For believers, this has happened in the past (and continues to be true).
  • Sanctification - The ongoing process by which God works in us to make us more and more like Him. For believers, this is present.
  • Glorification - The final transformation when our bodies are changed and we are free of our sin nature. This is still in the future.
This song is about the transformation that takes place when we are first saved. We are made new and changed. Here is my favorite Bible passage about the transformation that takes place in believers at the moment they believe in Jesus and His death for their sins:
Ephesians 2:1-10 And you were dead in your trespasses and sins, in which you formerly walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, of the spirit that is now working in the sons of disobedience. Among them we too all formerly lived in the lusts of our flesh, indulging the desires of the flesh and of the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, even as the rest. But God, being rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in our transgressions, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved), and raised us up with Him, and seated us with Him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, so that in the ages to come He might show the surpassing riches of His grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; not as a result of works, so that no one may boast. For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand so that we would walk in them.

That Was Then, This Is Now

by Josh Wilson and Ben Glover

Verse 1:
We used to hide from the light.
We made friends with the night.
John 3:19-20 This is the judgment, that the Light has come into the world, and men loved the darkness rather than the Light, for their deeds were evil. For everyone who does evil hates the Light, and does not come to the Light for fear that his deeds will be exposed.
Ephesians 5:8 for you were formerly darkness, but now you are Light in the Lord; walk as children of Light 
We were headed the wrong way on a one-way track
Going nowhere fast.
God says in Isaiah 65:2 “I have spread out My hands all day long to a rebellious people, Who walk in the way which is not good, following their own thoughts,”
Jesus said in Matthew 7:13-14 “Enter through the narrow gate; for the gate is wide and the way is broad that leads to destruction, and there are many who enter through it. For the gate is small and the way is narrow that leads to life, and there are few who find it.”

Verse 2:
We got used to the dark,
We thought this is who we are,
Matthew 6:23 But if your eye is bad, your whole body will be full of darkness. If then the light that is in you is darkness, how great is the darkness!
And we figured that we were just too far gone,
But we were wrong.
David speaking to God, in Psalm 139:11-12 If I say, “Surely the darkness will overwhelm me, and the light around me will be night,” Even the darkness is not dark to You, and the night is as bright as the day. Darkness and light are alike to You.

‘Cause love came running like a river
Romans 5:8 But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.
And we got washed in the water 
Titus 3:5 He saved us, not on the basis of deeds which we have done in righteousness, but according to His mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewing by the Holy Spirit,
Then He said you're forgiven
Luke 5:20 Seeing their faith, He said, “Friend, your sins are forgiven you.”
Your sins are gone.
Psalm 103:12 As far as the east is from the west, so far has He removed our transgressions from us. 

That was then, this is now.
You're bought by the blood, saved by the Son the saints all sing about.
Acts 20:28 Be on guard for yourselves and for all the flock, among which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers, to shepherd the church of God which He purchased with His own blood.
1 Peter 1:18-19 knowing that you were not redeemed with perishable things like silver or gold from your futile way of life inherited from your forefathers, but with precious blood, as of a lamb unblemished and spotless, the blood of Christ.
 John 3:16-17 “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life. For God did not send the Son into the world to judge the world, but that the world might be saved through Him.”
That was lost, this is found.
Jesus said in the parable about the prodigal son, in Luke 15:32 “‘But we had to celebrate and rejoice, for this brother of yours was dead and has begun to live, and was lost and has been found.’”
Jesus said in Luke 19:10 “For the Son of Man has come to seek and to save that which was lost.”
And it's time to say goodbye to the old you now.
2 Corinthians 5:17 Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creature; the old things passed away; behold, new things have come.
So go ahead, put the past in the past.
Box it up like an old photograph.
You don't have to go back,
‘Cause that was then and this is now.
God says in Isaiah 43:17-18 Do not call to mind the former things, or ponder things of the past. Behold, I will do something new, now it will spring forth; Will you not be aware of it? I will even make a roadway in the wilderness, rivers in the desert.”
Philippians 3:13-14 Brethren, I do not regard myself as having laid hold of it yet; but one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and reaching forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus. 
Ephesians 4:22-24 that, in reference to your former manner of life, you lay aside the old self, which is being corrupted in accordance with the lusts of deceit, and that you be renewed in the spirit of your mind, and put on the new self, which in the likeness of God has been created in righteousness and holiness of the truth. 

Verse 3:
We've been remade by grace,
Ephesians 2:8 For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God;
1 Peter 1:3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His great mercy has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, 
We've all got new names,
Revelation 2:17 ‘He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches. To him who overcomes, to him I will give some of the hidden manna, and I will give him a white stone, and a new name written on the stone which no one knows but he who receives it.’
And nothing we do could ever change
What He did that day.
John 10:28-29 and I give eternal life to them, and they will never perish; and no one will snatch them out of My hand. My Father, who has given them to Me, is greater than all; and no one is able to snatch them out of the Father’s hand.

When love came running like a river
1 John 4:10 In this is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins
We got washed in the water
1 Corinthians 6:11 Such were some of you; but you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and in the Spirit of our God.
Then He said you're forgiven
Colossians 2:13 When you were dead in your transgressions and the uncircumcision of your flesh, He made you alive together with Him, having forgiven us all our transgressions,
And you belong.
1 Corinthians 3:23 and you belong to Christ; and Christ belongs to God.

That was then, this is now.
You're bought by the blood, saved by the Son the saints all sing about.
That was lost, this is found.
And it's time to say goodbye to the old you now.
So go ahead, put the past in the past.
Box it up like an old photograph.
You don't have to go back
‘Cause that was then.

If we turn and confess every unrighteousness,
He is faithful and just to forgive.
1 John 1:9 If we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.
Oh, so turn and confess every wrong and regret
And see what it means to live.
Proverbs 28:13 He who conceals his transgressions will not prosper, but he who confesses and forsakes them will find compassion.

That was then, this is now.
You're bought by the blood, saved by the Son the saints all sing about.
That was lost, this is found.
And it's time to say goodbye to the old you now.
So go ahead, put the past in the past.
Box it up like an old photograph.
You don't have to go back.
‘Cause that was then and this is now.

Tuesday, February 20, 2018

Taking Salads In A Jar to Friends In Need

Maybe you've been a recipient of a Meal Ministry or maybe you have made a meal to bring to someone going through a rough time. Either way, taking someone a meal is a ministry that has been a standard of Christian hospitality and service. 

Why Take A Meal

Usually, when something major happens in the life of a friend or family member you want to do whatever you can to help. Unfortunately, when you are watching a friend go through a difficult time, you feel helpless. The small things that you actually can do to help feel like nothing important. However, even doing small things like taking someone a meal can just send a message that you noticed their needs and care about them. While making a meal for someone can save them the time and money, it can also let them know that you see them and what they are going through, that you love them and want to do something to help.
Romans 12:10-13 Be devoted to one another in brotherly love; give preference to one another in honor; not lagging behind in diligence, fervent in spirit, serving the Lord; rejoicing in hope, persevering in tribulation, devoted to prayer, contributing to the needs of the saints, practicing hospitality.
1 Peter 4:9-11 Be hospitable to one another without complaint. As each one has received a special gift, employ it in serving one another as good stewards of the manifold grace of God. Whoever speaks, is to do so as one who is speaking the utterances of God; whoever serves is to do so as one who is serving by the strength which God supplies; so that in all things God may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to whom belongs the glory and  dominion forever and ever. Amen.

When To Take A Meal

  • After a couple has their first baby
  • Following a surgery or illness
  • For a housewarming gift
  • An elderly person who is having trouble cooking for themselves
  • When a family (without children) is grieving

What To Take For A Meal

Great options for a meal to take include:
Don't forget to take:
  • Food packed in disposable containers, so they don't need to keep track of your dish
  • Any directions for preparing the food
  • A side dish (bread, vegetables, potatoes, or even a fruit salad)
And consider sending:
  • Paper plates so they won't have to do dishes
  • A dessert
  • The recipe so they can make the meal again if they loved it

What To Consider When Choosing A Meal

Every family has different opinions on foods they like or don't like. Here are some things to consider when you are cooking for another family.
  • Food Allergies - not only should you not send a food if the family has a member with an allergy, but you should clean your cooking area well to be sure you don't contaminate the food with traces of that food
  • Dietary Restrictions - low fat, gluten-free, dairy-free - some people have food intolerances or other food restrictions based on health issues
  • Food Preferences - vegan, vegetarian, dislikes (some of the most common ones are seafood, blue cheese, liver, and broccoli, and olives)
  • Children - if the family has children, you may consider making meals that are more kid-friendly like spaghetti instead of a chicken broccoli casserole

A Different Idea

Sometimes you need a different idea. Maybe all of your ideas are taken by others or you need something with different dietary restrictions. So I decided to send some salads in a jar. 

Salads in a Jar are perfect for:
  • First-time moms and dads
  • Families with children not eating solid foods yet
  • Single adults
  • Couples without children
  • Seniors
  • Vegetarians or vegans

How To Make A Salad In A Jar

Salads in a Jar are very easy to make, especially in quantities. I use wide mouth canning jars with plastic storage lids. I line the jars up on the counter and then I layer in the following:
  • Salad dressings, sauces, salsa, sour cream... anything wet
  • Hard vegetables or fruit (carrots, onions, apples...)
  • Soft vegetables or fruit (tomatoes, kiwi...)
  • Meats or protein (chicken, beef, shrimp, tofu...)
  • Cheese or hardboiled eggs
  • Beans, grains (quinoa, couscous, rice...), or pasta
  • Nuts or seeds
  • Greens
Store any crunchy toppings (croutons, tortilla strips, wonton strips, cheese crisps...) in a separate storage bag or container.

You can use whatever recipe or combination you want. Chicken Caesar salad, steak gorgonzola salad, taco salad, BLT salad, or BBQ southwest salad. The possibilities are endless.

You only need to store the jars upright and they easily last 3-5 days. Then, when you are ready to eat them, shake it and add any crunchy toppings from your separate storage bag or container.

Gifting a Salad In a Jar

When you make a salad jar as a gift or to take as a meal ministry, make one jar for each person in the household. Then, add these tags with a hole punch and a ribbon so that they know how to reuse the jars to make salads for themselves.

I've recently gifted these... twice. They both were well received.

    Thursday, February 15, 2018

    Bible Verses for Blessed Be Your Name

    Life always has plenty of ups and downs. The difficulty in all of it is remembering the Lord. Remembering to praise his for His blessings. Remembering to trust Him through the difficult times and praise Him even if...

    Some of the these beautiful "Even If" moments are found in these verses:
    After all the tragedy in Job's life, Job says in Job 13:15 Though He slay me, I will hope in HimNevertheless I will argue my ways before Him.”
    When Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego are faced with going through the fire, they say in Daniel 3:17-18 “If it be so, our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the furnace of blazing fire; and He will deliver us out of your hand, O king. But even if He does not, let it be known to you, O king, that we are not going to serve your gods or worship the golden image that you have set up.”
    After Habakkuk hears about the coming judgment on Israel, he says in Habakkuk 3:16-19 I heard and my inward parts trembled, at the sound my lips quivered. Decay enters my bones, and in my place I tremble. Because I must wait quietly for the day of distress, for the people to arise who will invade us. Though the fig tree should not blossom and there be no fruit on the vines, though the yield of the olive should fail and the fields produce no food, though the flock should be cut off from the fold and there be no cattle in the stalls, yet I will exult in the Lord, I will rejoice in the God of my salvation. The Lord God is my strength, and He has made my feet like hinds’ feet, and makes me walk on my high places. For the choir director, on my stringed instruments.

    Blessed Be Your Name

    by Matt Redman and Beth Redman

    Verse 1:
    Blessed be Your Name in the land that is plentiful.
    Where Your streams of abundance flows, blessed be Your name.
    Deuteronomy 8:10 When you have eaten and are satisfied, you shall bless the Lord your God for the good land which He has given you.
    Deuteronomy 26:10-11 Now behold, I have brought the first of the produce of the ground which You, O Lord have given me.’ And you shall set it down before the Lord your God, and worship before the Lord your God; and you and the Levite and the alien who is among you shall rejoice in all the good which the Lord your God has given you and your household
    Blessed be Your Name when I'm found in this desert place.
    Though I walk through the wilderness, blessed Be Your name.
    Habakkuk 3:17-18 Though the fig tree should not blossom and there be no fruit on the vines, though the yield of the olive should fail and the fields produce no food, though the flock should be cut off from the fold and there be no cattle in the stalls, yet I will exult in the Lord, I will rejoice in the God of my salvation.

    Every blessing You pour out I'll turn back to praise.
    Deuteronomy 8:17-18 Otherwise, you may say in your heart, ‘My power and the strength of my hand made me this wealth.’ But you shall remember the Lord your God, for it is He who is giving you power to make wealth, that He may confirm His covenant which He swore to your fathers, as it is this day.’
    When the darkness closes in, Lord, still I will say...
    Psalm 23:4 Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of deathI fear no evil, for You are with meYour rod and Your staff, they comfort me.

    Blessed be the name of the Lord, blessed be Your name.
    Daniel 2:20 Daniel said, Let the name of God be blessed forever and ever, for wisdom and power belong to Him.”
    Blessed be the name of the Lord, blessed be Your glorious name.
    Psalm 72:18-19 Blessed be the Lord God, the God of Israel, who alone works wonders. And blessed be His glorious name foreverAnd may the whole earth be filled with His glory. Amen, and Amen.

    Verse 2:
    Blessed be Your name when the sun's shining down on me.
    When the world's all as it should be, blessed be Your name.
    James 1:17 Every good thing given and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shifting shadow.
    Blessed be Your name on the road marked with suffering.
    Though there's pain in the offering, blessed be Your name.
    Psalm 42:5 Why are you in despair, O my soul? And why have you become disturbed within me? Hope in God, for I shall again praise Him for the help of His presence.
    Psalm 34:1 I will bless the Lord at all timesHis praise shall continually be in my mouth.

    You give and take away. You give and take away.
    My heart will choose to say, Lord, blessed be Your name.
    Job 1:21 He said, “Naked I came from my mother’s womb, and naked I shall return there. The Lord gave and the Lord has taken awayBlessed be the name of the Lord.”

    Thursday, February 8, 2018

    Love in the Bible

    The world tells us a lot about what it believes love is. It says that love is a strong emotion that is more important than all else. That it comes and goes as it wants and we can't control it. That it should be easy and pleasant, not hard work. Here are some quotes from the world's view about love:
    "The heart wants what it wants. There's no logic to these things. You meet someone and you fall in love and that's that." - Woody Allen
    "Some people think that it’s holding on that makes one strong; sometimes it’s letting go." - Herman Hesse
    “Love yourself first and everything else falls into line. You really have to love yourself to get anything done in this world.” — Lucille Ball
    This is very different from what love is in the Bible. The Bible displays love as a choice, a decision. It is putting others before yourself. 

    1 Corinthians 13:4-7 Love Passage |

    Here is a printable with Bible verses about love in the Bible.  Study the verses and highlight or underline what it is saying about love or add some notes. You can contrast them with the world's view of love. Then, you can cut out the verses and put them in piles categorizing them by their main point. That may point out some of the strongest points the Bible is trying to make about love.

    Feel free to print this out and use it with your Bible study group, Sunday School class, or small group. Or use it with your children (whether you homeschool or not). Or just study what the Bible says about love on your own. You can share it with others by printing it or by sharing it online, just please share a link to this page rather than a direct link to the printable on Google drive. 

    Thursday, February 1, 2018

    God Controls The Season Children's Lesson

    I taught this Bible/science lesson about the four seasons to a group of kids from 3 years - 4th grade. The first section included the preschool age children, but the second section is geared more towards upper elementary.

    God Controls The Seasons Bible Lesson |

    God Controls The Seasons

    I introduced the topic of seasons with a kids video. I used one from Harry Kindergarten, but you could use a different one. 

    If you don't have a way to show a video, you can sing a song like one from this webpage

    Four Seasons Flip Book:
    I used this four seasons flip book as a short, easy activity to help the kids learn more about the seasons. This was focused on the younger students (I had a preschooler who could use a little more review on what the seasons were).
    Seasons Flip Book from This Reading Mama |

    Act Out The Seasons:
    Have the children act out the seasons in the following scenarios:
    • Be a tree through the four seasons.
    • Be the weather through the four seasons
    • Be a bear through the four seasons.
      Seasonal Clothing Race:
      Form teams of four for a relay race. Lay out the seasonal clothing at the other end of the room. The first person on each team races to the other end of the room and puts on the Spring items. Then, they return to tag the next person in line who races down and puts on the Summer items. The race continues through the items for all four seasons. The first team to race through all four seasons wins.
      Seasonal Clothing Relay Race |

      4 Seasons Tree:
      Print out 4 copies of the tree printable on cardstock for each child. Have the kids decorate a tree for each season. Then fold them all in half and glue the backs of all four together in order of the seasons.  Here is how I did them: 

      • Spring - stamp on pink paint with the bottom of a small soda bottle
      • Summer - stamp green ink with a leaf stamp
      • Fall - glue on pieces of orange and red colored tissue paper
      • Winter - glue on pieces of cotton balls for snow (maybe even make a snowman)

        Four Seasons Trees craft |

        If you don't have the supplies for these or if you have a Cricut, you can easily switch up some of these ideas. Just watch that you don't add too much dimension to the trees because the cardstock will need to be folded.
        • stamp paint or ink with q-tips, individually or bundled with a rubber band
        • stamp paint with a potato stamp
        • place stickers or foam stickers of leaves, flowers, or snowflakes
        • make flowers by gluing on puffy tissue paper 
        • color with crayons or markers
        • add color with thumbprint painting
        • glue on green or fall-colored leaves cut out of construction paper

        God Controls The Seasons - For Older Kids

        I introduced the science behind seasons by showing a Crash Course YouTube video. These videos are great because they are fun, but introduce the concepts in a simple way.

        Model the Seasons:
        Use a globe and a flashlight, lantern, or lamp without a shade to model the seasons. Show how the globe is tilted and how that affects the sunlight hitting the globe at the four "corners" around the sun. If you are unfamiliar with the concept you can check out this video on how it works.

        The Earths Tilt is the Reasons for Seasons Printable:
        The Reason for Seasons is The Earth's Tilt free printable |
        Print the worksheet and have the students fill out the worksheet introducing the ideas of solstice and equinox. Then, use a highlighter to show where the sun’s most direct light falls on the globe

        God Made The Seasons Printable
        Print out this printable and have the students look up the verses and match them with the concept supported by each verse. 

        Discuss the Purpose of the Seasons
        Ask these questions and help lead the students to the answers.

        • Why are there days and nights? (to spread out the warmth of the sun East and West)
        • Why are there seasons? (to spread North and South)
        • How do seasons affect where humans can live on earth? (it spreads out where people can live so that there are more inhabitable areas that would otherwise be too cold or too hot)
        • How do seasons affect weather? (some places have rainy and dry seasons) 
        • How does it affect agriculture? (some plants require the cold of winter to grow again, it also makes growing seasons) 
        • How do the seasons affect insect population? (bugs die or go dormant in the cold - this stops insect-borne diseases)
        • How did God equip plants and animals for seasons? (some plants going dormant, some animals hibernate)

        Here is a printout of the whole lesson, but feel free to pick and choose from the activities for what best fits your students and your time. You can also check out my pinterest board on this subject.

        If you liked this activity, check out my God Controls The Weather Bible Lesson.
        God Controls The Weather Bible Lesson |

        Friday, January 26, 2018

        God Controls The Weather Children's Lesson

        This is the first of two children's Bible lessons about God's control over the earth.  This first lesson is about weather and the second one is about the seasons. I chose these two topics because there are plenty of Bible verses and stories and plenty of hands-on activities for both. I had broken each lesson into two sections: one for all the kids (as young as three) and one for the older kids (probably 8 and up).

        While I created this lesson for a children's Bible class at a Bible conference, it could easily be used for homeschooling either as a whole lesson or just selecting some of the activities or printables with your curriculum. 

        God Controls The Weather Bible Lesson For Kids |

        God Controls The Weather

        To introduce the topic of God being in control of nature, I read Psalm 104 and had them draw what I read. I had a large tablet (like an easel pad). Here are some of their drawings. 

        Drawings of Psalm 104 for God Controls The Weather Children's Lesson |

        Water Cycle Video:
        We watched a video to introduce the water cycle. I used "The Great Aqua Adventure" by Crash Course Kids. You could use a different video about the water cycle.

        Water Cycle In A Bag:
        I found this awesome experiment that lets kids see the water cycle with their own eyes. All you have to do is pour some water in a bag and tape it to a window that gets lots of sunlight. Then you can just sit back and watch the water cycle.

        Water Cycle in a Bag from God Controls The Weather Children's Bible Lesson |

        Closeup of Water Cycle in a Bag from God Controls The Weather Children's Bible Lesson |

        Rain In A Jar:
        I just included this activity because it looked like fun and illustrated to the younger ones how clouds can get "full" and start raining. The best part is they get to use pipettes or eye droppers - and kids love pipettes. All you need is jars or cups of water, shaving cream, pipettes or eye droppers, and food coloring.
        Cloud In A Jar from The STEM Labroatory

        Weather In The Bible Activity:
        Print out a set of the Weather Icons for each student (or you could give each student one icon) and glue them to popsicle sticks. Then, read the Bible verses from the list on this matching sheet and have the students hold up the icon for each weather when they hear it mentioned or described. Alternatively, you can print on the matching sheet and just have them match, but I usually like to give the students a chance to move around instead of just complete worksheets. The point in most of these verses is that God used weather to accomplish His purposes. 

        Weather In The Bible student response cards |

        Weather In The Bible Matching Sheet |

        God Controls The Weather - For Older Students

        How Much Does A Cloud Hold:
        I found this fun experiment from the National Weather Service that helps kids visualize how much water is in clouds. And they get to use pipettes again! Basically, you count how many drops you can drop onto a cotton ball before it reaches capacity and starts dripping. You can have them hypothesize beforehand how many drops will fit and also see who can get their cotton ball to hold the most. Of course, clouds aren't made of cotton (actually a cloud is formed by water droplets bonding to dust and pollen in the atmosphere), water droplets are much smaller than the drops released from pipettes or eye droppers, and an updraft helps a cloud hold more water, but this activity gives them an idea of just how much water a cloud can hold. 

        The Water Cycle In The Bible:
        If you are focusing on teaching the vocabulary for the water cycle (evaporation, condensation, precipitation, and runoff) and demonstrate that each of these is discussed in the Bible, this activity will work well for older students. Print out this worksheet. Then, have them cut off the vocabulary words and Bible verses and glue them to the proper location in the picture. 

        The Water Cycle In The Bible Worksheet |

        It's great to see if the students can process the ideas from the lesson, so I ended this lesson with a discussion about the purpose behind the water cycle (in other words, Why did God create water to go through the water cycle?).
        1. Who needs water? How do they use it? (plants need water; animals and humans drink it)
        2. What does the water cycle do to the water? How does it benefit the water and us? (it purifies it - like distillation - and moves it to different locations; this gives us fresh water and brings water from oceans to inland)
        3. What else does the water cycle affect? How else does it change nature? (Runoff causes erosion and sedimentation which causes in geography like deltas at mouths of rivers and canyons exposing new minerals)

        Here is a printout of the whole lesson, but feel free to pick and choose from the activities for what best fits your students and your time. You can also check out my pinterest board on this subject.

        If you liked this activity, check out my God Controls The Seasons Bible Lesson.