God’s Very Good Idea!

In the beginning, God had a very good idea! God’s idea was to make people…lots of people…lots of different people…who would all enjoy loving him and all enjoy loving each other. They would all be made in His image—they would all have a little part of God to show to the world.

So God got to work! He made a beautiful world for the first people. And he said to them: Be happy! Enjoy loving me and loving each other. Look after and enjoy the earth, too! God continued creating people— all were made in His image. And all of them were different. Some were boys. Some were girls. Some liked reading. Some had darker skin. Some had lighter skin. Some liked riding bikes. Some had curly hair. In fact, God made every person!

And God is still doing this—He had the very good idea to create you! You are a part of God’s very good idea!

We are all different, but we are all the same, too. People might look different or speak different or play different. But they are all made in God’s image. God created each of us equally with dignity, value and beauty. He did this so we can love Him and love one another! We are part of God’s very good idea!

As you review this story with your child, we encourage you to reinforce these truths:

  • Every person is made by God.
  • Every person is made to enjoy loving God and loving each other.
  • Every person is made in the image of God.
  • We are all different—with unique interests and characteristics.
  • We are all the same—humans made by God!
  • We are a part of God’s very good idea!

To reinforce these truths in accessible kids language, we recommend God’s Very Good Idea, by Trillia Newbell.

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Creation Exploration

Hi Church Family!

We are halfway through the summer and nearing the end of our preschool creation unit on Sunday mornings in Antioch Kids! Our bottom line for preschoolers is: God made everything! We love teaching this important truth to kids because it also teaches us about:

  • God’s power. We can’t create something out of nothing—but God can! And He made everything!
  • God’s creativity. Just look at how beautiful and amazing everything is! God is the ultimate artist—He came up with so many wonderful and unique plants and animals and land formations and human beings.
  • God’s wisdom. God knew how everything would work best. He had a plan for everything in creation to fit together for good, so that living things would thrive and humans in particular would enjoy the best lives possible—which, most importantly, means that they got to be friends with God!
  • God’s love. He knows each creature so well, because He made them, and because He knows them so well, He also loves them with a love more powerful than anything else!
  • The goodness of creation. Each day, when God finished creating something new, He said it was good! Everything God made was and is good. Even when Adam and Eve chose to not trust God and sin was first experienced in the world, God still valued His creatures—so much that He chose to leave heaven and come here to Earth. But he didn’t stop there. He was even willing to die so that people could know Him, trust Him, and spend forever with Him.
  • The image of God. We are made in the image of God! In fact, God shared His likeness with every single person, meaning that people are designed to show a portion of God to the world. For example, some people are naturally very creative, and that reflects our God who is creative! Some people are more relational—this characteristic can remind others that God loves us and is a relational God. Some people are very wise, reflecting the wisdom of God. We are made in God’s image and this is our greatest source of value!
  • The goodness of rest. God rested on the 7th day, and that reminds us that we need to rest too! It’s important to take time to remember Who made us and provides for us. Taking Sabbath rest is a practice of trusting God, taking time to refocus our lives on the most important Person, who is truly everything we need.

Below are some ideas for ways to integrate these truths about our loving Creator into fun activities!

Eat: Make fun snacks that reinforce the ideas of the things God created on each day! One fun idea is Creation Trail Mix:

  • Mini Oreos – dark and light
  • Frosted Mini Wheats Cereal – cloudy sky and dusty land
  • Pretzel Sticks and Green and Red M&Ms – trees, bushes, and flowers
  • Orange and Yellow M&Ms – sun, stars, moon, and planets
  • Goldfish Crackers – sea creatures
  • Animal Crackers – animals
  • Marshmallows – pillows (God rested!)

snack copy.pdf

Another great idea is to put each ingredient in baggies and make the snack into a scavenger hunt! Our Out-of-Sync Life provides some fun rhyming clues to find each ingredient. “Creation Story Snacktime” from Ministry Matters provides a super fun interactive snack experience for each day of Creation. One of these ideas is to create a landscape out of foods such as broccoli, celery, apple slices, peanut butter, and/or salad dressing!

Go Out: Go experience some of God’s amazing creation! Take a walk in the park, hike up a mountain, swim in a lake, go to the zoo, a farm, or a museum.

Books: Below are a few books we like that teach core truths related to creation:

  • Jesus Storybook Bible by Sally Lloyd-Jones | The first chapter in this book tells an exciting account of how God created everything in the beginning!
  • A Love Letter From God – P. K. Hallinan | This book describes the amazing love of God for people.
  • All Things Bright and Beautiful – Cecil Frances Alexander | This book beautifully illustrates the hymn about God’s wonderful, unique creation.
  • God Gave Us Sleep – Lisa Tawn Bergren | A little polar bear learns that God made us to need sleep, and life works better when we take time to rest.

Crafts & Sensory Experiences: The Kids Activities Blog provides a bunch of ideas for art projects as simple as coloring sheets to more complex crafts. One craft provides a visual of what it might have looked like when God first created light. They suggest painting the inside of a shoebox black, cutting two holes in it, having your child peek into one of the holes, then shining a flashlight through the other hole. Another idea is to create a “Sky Sensory Bin” using supplies such as shaving cream, glitter, blue decorative stones, mirror tiles, and toy helicopters and airplanes.

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A Rocha is an organization centered on the proper care of God’s creation; their Creation Care Camp Curriculum is available free of charge. This program offers exploration activities, memory verses, songs, art projects, and games, all tied together with Bible lessons that demonstrate how God’s Word informs the way we care for His world. A Rocha’s Creation Care Camp teaches kids that God made everything, God is King of everything, and we have an important part in God’s work restoring creation to Himself!

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We hope you enjoy trying these fun activities that remind kids that God made them and loves them SO much!

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Creation Science Safari!

Check out this fun family science safari right here in Central Oregon! On this Creation Science Safari, Russ McGlenn (graduate of Multnomah University with a major in theology and a minor in missions and Christian education) will lead a fun learning group at the Lava Lands Center!  Russ will explain about volcanoes, glaciers, lava tubes and how all these fit into the story of Noah’s flood. Russ is 1/8 Native American and will also teach kids about the local plants in the surrounding area that have been used for food. 

Older students can count this safari as lab credits in geology. They can test their knowledge on rock identification and learn the explanations of geological formations from a world wide flood point of view.  After the volcano trail hike (which is fairly flat and paved), kids and students will explore the Lava River cave park, located two miles south. 

When: August 6, 9:30am – 1:30pm

How much: $25 per family and includes a 20 page colorful handbook. Each car will also need a vehicle day use pass ($5, unless you have a 2015 recreation pass). Optional: Families can ride a shuttle up to the top of the volcanic cinder cone at the park for  $2 fee.

What to bring: Pack a sack lunch for a picnic in the park.

Where: Meet at the parking lot at Lava Lands Visitor Center. (58201 US-97. Bend, OR 97707). Look for a Yellow Adventure Safaris Flag to find the group! 

How to register, or for more information: Please call (805) 588-3353 or email triciamcglenn@gmail.com

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Antioch Kids: Preschool

That tree outside your window—it was made my God. The sun shining in the sky—it was made by God. That beautiful/handsome face you see when you look in the mirror—it too was made by God. God made everything. Everything! Pretty exciting, isn’t it?

It’s that excitement, wonder and awe that we want to share with our preschoolers at Antioch this month. Everywhere they look, everything they smell, the grass under their feet—it’s all made by God.

Each week this month,  preschoolers will hear about another part of creation. We’ll play in water, look at the sky, investigate the dirt, and have fun with pictures of animals. We’ll end the month talking about God’s most amazing creation—you. Me, you, our preschool friends—we were all made by God. That’s pretty special.

Want to know more about what your preschool will be learning? Enjoy this short video that is designed to do just that!

<p><a href=”http://vimeo.com/63087665″>First Look Preview Made By God (June 2013)</a> from <a href=”http://vimeo.com/whatisorange”>Orange</a&gt; on <a href=”https://vimeo.com”>Vimeo</a&gt;.</p>

And don’t forget to check out the “Small Talk” resource! This resource is designed to help you continue teaching your preschooler about God throughout the week. To check it out, click on the link below!

Antioch Kids Small Talk

Hope to see you Sunday!

Antioch Kids: Preschool

Are you wondering what your preschooler and toddler are learning on Sunday mornings in September? All month long, your child will be learning that “God loves me.”

Why does He love me”, they ask?

The answer is simple. “Because God made me!”

Week 1: The month began with us talking about creation. This lesson emphasized that God made each and every one of us.

Week 2: We will talk about the story of the lost sheep to show how much God loves us. He loves us so much that He will always search for us!

Week 3: Then we will talk about Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego and learn that not only does God love us, but He will help us.

Week 4: Finally, we will learn that Jesus is our good friend, as seen in the story when Jesus calms the storm.

Week 5: A fun review of all 4 stories we have learned this month!

Below, you will find a great tool which recommends using Bath Time as a teaching time, designed to help your child remember what they are learning on Sunday mornings!

We added a fun station to your preschooler’s Sunday morning experience. After story time, your preschooler is invited to a fun worship experience! We’d think this is one of the coolest things that happens on Sunday mornings. There is nothing as joyful as 40 preschoolers singing to God and telling Him how much they love Him! We’d love for you to check it out, too.

We are praying that you and your preschooler enjoy Sunday mornings! Let us know if there is anything we can do to help!

See you Sunday!

Linda Van Voorst