3 Secrets To Keeping Your Child's Heart Focused on the True Meaning of Christmas
As moms and in-charge-of-stuff women, we know that December can be one of the craziest months of the year. The month fills up so quickly with parties, trips and to-do lists. We hear it from everywhere, "Slow down! Enjoy the season! Have a simple Christmas!" but it's much easier to say than do. Life is full, Christmas is for celebrating and December just gets filled up with stuff! Of course, we are smart mamas and can get up early, grab the latest Christmas devotional and walk through Advent with our minds planted firmly on Jesus' birth and the wise men's gifts. We can juggle the school parties and still keep our hearts in worship as we wrap presents. But can our kids do the same? I picture my children's minds like a big colander---it's being stuffed with all of these bright, shiny, whirling, twirling Christmas Things and I wonder what will be left after it's had a good rinsing and shaking? How can we help our kids know the real meaning of Christmas? How can we lead our kids in excitement, not just about the birth of a baby, but about the beginning of a rescue plan to save the world?!
Here's a few tips for you and your kids this season:
1. Kids meditate with their hands. You and I like the idea of a prayer closet with a cuppa, a Bible and a blank journal. Kids need space to learn! They need the focus of coloring, the creativity of a craft and the bouncing up and down of a game. Try reading Luke 2 and then do a craft about the manger and the shepherds and see what conversations and recollection happens at the same time!
2. Kids learn in small doses. Kids need small bites of the meat of God's Word. One verse about the manger. One day about the swaddling clothes. One activity about Joseph. One story about Mary and Elizabeth. It takes longer, but those those small stories get buried deeper!
3. Kids love repetition. This isn't a surprise as your child has a beloved book that's been read over-and-over-and-over-and-over again. Christmas should be the same--read and talk about The Story over and over. Let them hear it so many times they can't help but know it and know it good. Let it be a strong and deep foundation that every other piece of glitter and sparkle stands on. When looking at Advent and December, help your children be like King David and say, "I remember the days of long ago; I meditate on all your works and consider what your hands have done." (Psalm 143:5) When you give your kids time and space to interact with God's Word, they will see Christmas as a loving miracle from God's hands---a special gift to cherish for themselves and for the whole world!
Amanda is the author of a special Advent book that helps parents lead their kids in daily meditations on the Christmas story from the Bible. Truth in the Tinsel: An Advent Experience for Little Hands gives parents and kids instructions for a daily reading, ornament craft and fun conversations and activities to help families remember, meditate and consider the best present of all--Jesus! Use code MISSIONALWOMEN to receive 20% off at the Truth in the Tinsel website!
Amanda White is a stay-at-home mom of two who blogs at ohAmanda.com and is the author of Truth in the Tinsel: An Advent Experience for Little Hands. In her former life, Amanda was a Children’s Pastor — overseeing, organizing and developing ministry for kids in nursery through middle school, but now that she is a mom, her “skills” are used up on her kids!
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12/3/2014 10:40:47 am
Great ideas! I used to read my little boy the Christmas story in his children's Bible every night at bedtime through December. The small dose and repetition was great for helping him take in the story.
12/7/2014 10:27:20 pm
love the emphasis on the big picture. Christmas is more than just the birth of a baby, but God's redemptive plan for the world! Thanks for the encouragement to teach that big plan in "bite-sized" pieces for our little loved ones!
12/8/2014 09:40:21 am
Great tips! Thank you for linking with Unforced Rhythms.
12/12/2015 09:23:10 pm
My sons are older, but they are enjoying the adult coloring pages that I've been printing out. A good resource for older kids! Visiting from Faith n Friends Blog Hop
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