Hi friends! October is coming and it’s going to be SUPER! This month we are teaching the bottom line that God can help me be brave. Our memory verse is: “Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid … for the Lord your God goes with you” (Deuteronomy 31:6, NIV). As we learn about four Bible heroes who were brave and trusted God, we will participate in superhero-themed activities! Below is our October Parent Cue, which provides ideas for how you and your kiddos can continue talking at home about how God makes us brave!
Monthly Archives: September 2015
This month our preschoolers are going to learn some super things on Sunday mornings! October’s memory verse is from Deuteronomy 31:6 — “Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid … for the Lord your God goes with you” (NIV). We will be teaching kids the bottom line that God can help me be brave while exploring the fantastic world of superheroes! But unlike pretend superheroes, we don’t need superpowers or fancy capes or masks to make us brave. Our powerful God is always with us, knows everything, and helps us do important jobs—that’s why we can be brave.
As we utilize the superhero theme, we will look at four of the Bible’s own heroes:
- Gideon. He trusted in God’s wisdom when He told them they would go to battle and win against the Midianites, even though they had less people and less supplies—and (of course) God was correct and they won! (Judges 7:9-22)
- Miriam. She helped hide her baby brother Moses. When a princess found baby Moses, Miriam knew God could help her make the brave choice to talk to the princess. She told her that she knew someone who could help take care of the baby—and Moses’s mom got to take care of him! (Exodus 1:22–2:10)
- Hezekiah. This king trusted in God’s power when the evil King Sennacherib came to fight against Judah. Hezekiah’s people rebuilt their city’s wall and prayed to God for help, and He sent an angel to fight for them, and Sennacherib’s army ran away! (2 Chronicles 32)
- Daniel. King Darius made a law that people couldn’t pray to anyone except him, or else they would get thrown in the lions’ den. Daniel bravely kept praying, because he knew God would always be with him, no matter where he went. He survived the lions’ pit and the king witnessed God’s power! (Daniel 6:1-23)
We are so excited to begin this new month with you and your kiddos! To start off our super October, we invite you to check out one of the early Bible heroes.
Moses was brave when he obeyed God’s instructions to tell Pharaoh to let the Israelites go—even though he was scared! Then he had to be brave again when he led the Israelites across a great sea. These stories, as told in the Jesus Storybook Bible, are available here and here.
Finally, here is a fun animation for the song “Jesus, You’re My Superhero.” We can’t wait to see you and start learning together how God makes us brave!
Our elementary kids will be learning all about individuality in Antioch Kids this October. Individuality is discovering who you are meant to be so you can make a difference. We would like to equip you as parents to begin a conversation about individuality at home this fall. To help do this, we want to provide you with this great resource called God Time Cards. These short devotions are designed for kids to do during the week. They are fun and engaging – and we hope you and your elementary student will love them!
Below you will find the God Time Cards for October to help you and your family continue learning about the importance of individuality and what it means to unpack our gifts and use them for God. Simply click below to get started! Enjoy!
God is the only god. God is one of a kind with no beginning and no end. And everything God has created is unique and one of a kind. Each animal is not only different from other species, but also different from other like animals. No zebra has the exact same patterns of stripes. Each monkey has its own temperament. Each sparrow sings a slightly different tune.
The same is true for people. God made each person one of a kind—even identical twins have unique fingerprints! Every person that ever was or ever will be is an original, including the kids we serve each week at church.
Now, imagine that God created each one of those kids with an individual box of potential and your job as a parent or leader was to help them figure out how to open it and use it.
There’s a tendency to treat kids like they need to wait before they can start discovering what’s in their box—before they can do something that matters. But kids can use their gifts right now. Sometimes they just need some help figuring out what’s in their box.
That’s where you come in. As leaders in kids’ lives, you can help them discover how to tap into their God-given potential. If you teach kids to find purpose NOW, they’ll grow up knowing the even greater potential God has for them in the future. That’s why for our memory verse this month we chose a moment where Paul was encouraging Timothy to use the gifts God gave him to serve the church.
In 1 Timothy 4:12a, Paul writes: “Don’t let anyone look down on you because you are young. Set an example for the believers in what you say and in how you live” (NIrV).
We don’t talk about Timothy a lot, but he is a perfect example of a young individual who had incredible potential. A handful of insightful adults in his life recognized what was in his box and helped him open it. And because of that, Timothy had tremendous impact on the growth of the early church. His story is an incredible example of individuality.
Individuality is discovering who you are meant to be so you can make a difference.
Most of us remember Timothy because of what Paul wrote to him while he was a young leader in the church at Ephesus. But if you do a little digging in the book of Acts, and you look at what we know about the journeys of Paul, you can piece together a pretty remarkable story about a young man who discovered his unique God-given potential and did some amazing things.
This month, you have the opportunity to help kids discover the same thing. You can open someone’s box and help them see something inside that they can use right now, maybe something about their story or some talent they may not know they have. When you help a child begin to understand that God made them and God has given them unique abilities to love and to serve others, it has a lasting impact—not only because of what they accomplish right now, but because they are establishing a pattern of living that can change the course of their story.
First, we know from Acts 16:1 that Timothy was the son of a Jewish mother and a Greek Father. That means Timothy grew up understanding the Jewish heritage and the stories of Moses alongside hearing about Greek gods and pagan rituals. This unique part of his story would position him to play a significant role in taking the story of Jesus to the Gentile world. Paul also had a unique story too, which he shares with Timothy in 1 Timothy 1:12-16.
Bottom Line: Jesus wants to use your story to make a difference. As kids hear both of these stories, we want them to begin to understand that Jesus wants to use their story to make a difference, just like He did with Paul and Timothy.
We’ll look closer at Acts 16:1-5 and discover that there were also some unique abilities in Timothy’s box that people around him must have noticed. And Paul could see it too, because he decided to take Timothy on a missionary journey with him.
Bottom Line: When you discover your gifts, you can make a difference. You can help kids discover the unique ways God has gifted them. As they realize this, we can encourage them to use those gifts to make a difference.
In 1 Corinthians 12:12-21 and 25-27, Paul explained to the church at Corinth that we are all parts of one body. Everyone has a unique story and unique talents, but we can’t live out our calling alone. We need each other. Timothy grew to realize that one of the greatest things in the box of his potential were his relationships with other Christians.
Bottom Line: When we use our gifts together, we can make a greater difference. Kids will learn that when they partner with other people, God can use those gifts to impact the world is a huge way.
We’ll finish the month by digging deeper into our memory verse, 1 Timothy 4:12. After spending time with Paul traveling from city to city preaching the news of the gospel, Timothy ended up back in Ephesus, and he had some experience under his belt. Even as a young man, he was able to lead this significant church.
Bottom Line: You can make a difference right now. We want our kids to understand that they don’t have to wait to use the gifts God has given them. The next generation can do some amazing thing right now if the present generation starts helping them unpack their potential.
Memorizing Scripture is a powerful practice for every follower of Christ. Often, we hear people say that, when tempted to do something wrong, a relevant Bible verse comes to mind as a reminder of what God desires. Teaching kids to memorize Bible verses is super helpful for them now and in the future.
But how do you get a two-year-old to memorize a Bible verse?
Well—have they memorized any songs? Such as “Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star”? If they can memorize that, they can definitely memorize Scripture! Fellow blogger Jen, of “Being Confident of This,” came up with seven ideas for helping your kiddos—of all ages—memorize Bible verses.
1. “Check It.” Edit the verse so that it is age-appropriate to your kids’ vocabulary and short enough for them to memorize. Fifth-graders might be able to memorize Micah 6:8—
“He has told you, O man, what is good;
and what does the Lord require of you
but to do justice, and to love kindness,
and to walk humbly with your God?” (ESV)
—but your preschoolers might just stare at you with their eyebrows raised. You could adapt this verse to say something like: “God asks us to be fair, kind, and love Him best of all.”
2. “Act It.” Come up with creative movements to illustrate the verse. You can even ask your kids to make up the motions. For Micah 6:8, you might do something like this:
- “God” – point up (many of us think of God as being “up there” or all around)
- “asks us” – move your hand outward from your mouth, indicating words coming from your mouth
- “to be fair” – do a “Rock, Paper, Scissors” gesture (sometimes that’s how kids decide when they want to be sure there is no bias!)
- “kind” – hug yourself
- “and love Him” – cross your arms over your chest, the ASL sign for “love”
- “best of all.” – make a number one with your pointer finger and hold it in the air
3. “Play With It.” Say your verse like little mice, in squeaky voices and curled up in a ball on the ground. Say it like a giant, in a big, booming voice! You can even sing it to a tune you already know, or make up a new song!
YouTube happens to contain many songs about Micah 6:8. One of my favorites is this version, which I learned at Bible Camp as an eleven-year-old. Here is a fun version made especially for preschoolers!
4. “Repeat It.” Ask your child if he or she can say it on their own. Give hints and second tries when needed!
5. “Draw It.” Give your children the opportunity to create an art project portraying the verse’s meaning. Maybe your twelve-year-old will make a music video for the musical version of your verse, with a montage of kind, just, and humble acts. Maybe your first-grader will paint a picture of friends hugging, flipping a coin, and a small person holding hands with a big God. Maybe your three-year-old will draw lots of hearts and smiley faces! This option can be fun and helpful for your kids in understanding the Bible verse more deeply.
6. “Forget About References.” For younger children, the words “Micah six eight” won’t have much of a correlation to the meaning of the verse. You can teach it, but needn’t expect preschoolers to remember it. As for older elementary-age children, they are likely capable of understanding that the verse comes from a book written by a prophet named “Micah,” and that the passage is found in the eighth verse of chapter six. If you’re interested in doing some additional study, you could even teach them about the cultural context surrounding the passage. Here is one resource for learning more about the circumstances in which Micah was written.
7. “Remember Variety.” Different kids learn best in different ways—so try lots of different things! Ask for their ideas, too.
We would love to hear about your adventures in Bible memorization with your kiddos! Feel free to click “Leave a comment” below, or get in touch with a member of the Antioch Kids staff to share your inspiring, funny, or informative experiences.