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Thursday, December 8, 2011

Celebrating Jesus' Birth with Our Kids

A friend recently shared an idea on Facebook of Family Devotions for Advent. I really like it! So we talked about it and decided to do these activities with our children this month. Unfortunately we are a little behind, but it's okay... we can catch up! :-) My husband picked up these candles today at the store and we hope to start tonight.

Here are the first two activities we are going to try, thanks to Toddler Bites!

Devotion #1

Theme: Jesus had a family…we do too
Scripture: Read Luke 1:26-38.
Family Memory Verse: For nothing is impossible with God. Luke 1:37
Discussion Starter: Place a bowl filled with Hershey’s Kisses in front of your children.
Tell them that they may eat as many and they want as long as they don’t use their hands to unwrap them. Allow time to try.
It was nearly impossible to get the paper off of the Hershey’s Kisses without using your hands.
Ask: what are things that are impossible for us to do that God can do? Is there anything that is impossible for God to do? Why or Why not?
In our scripture reading, we learned that an angel told Mary she would have a baby-God’s son. She thought this was impossible because she wasn’t married. But with God, nothing is impossible.
Mary’s cousin Elizabeth, who was a much older woman – maybe the age of your grandmother – was also going to have a baby. This seemed impossible, but not for God.

Read Luke 1:13-19.
Ask: what is something that you are facing that seems impossible? What do you think Jesus would have you do about that “impossible” thing?
Prayer: Ask God to help you remember that nothing is impossible for Him.

Devotion #2

Theme: Angels and Shepherds
Scripture: Read Luke 2:8-20.
Family Memory Verse: Luke 2:13-14 And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying, Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.
Discussion Starter: Provide a flashlight for everyone in the family. Cut out the shape of an angel (5 inches high) from dark construction paper. Cut one for each family member. Turn off the lights and explain that the story we will hear happened at night.
Discussion: Read Luke 2:8-14, by flashlight. When you get to verse 9, shine the flashlight beam across your angel to create a large shadow on the wall. When you read verse 13, have everyone project their angels on the wall. Read Luke 2:15-20. Why do you think the shepherds “came with haste?” (vs. 16)
What did the shepherds do after they had visited with baby Jesus? (Re-read vs. 17, 18, & 20…they told everyone about what they had seen and heard; they praised glorified and praised God)
Ask: are we excited to share the news about Jesus birth with others? Have we stopped to praise and glorify Him this season?
Prayer: Pray a prayer of praise to God. Ask Him to help you share the news of Jesus’ birth and the reason for His coming with others.
Advent Activity: Light the Candles during dinner each day this week according to what week of advent we are in. This week we will be lighting the two outer Purple candles until Sunday, then we will also light the Pink.

Week 1 (Nov. 27) -- Purple (Hope)
Week 2 (Dec. 4) -- Purple (Preparation)
Week 3 (Dec. 11) -- Rose (Joy)
Week 4 (Dec. 18) -- Purple (Love)
Week 5 (Christmas Day!!!) -- White (Christ)

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