Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Guest Blogger...Cara Putman

Resources to Help Us Disciple Our Kids

My husband and I are always looking for resources to help us disciple the children God has entrusted to us. It can feel like an overwhelming task until I realize how many tools are available to us. Following are a few of my favorite resources for young children.

Karyn Henley (http://www.karynhenley.com) has some great resources for young children including fun videos and her Day-by-Day Devotion books (http://www.karynhenley.com/site_pages/Bibleprod_new.htm#anch_7minutes) .

Her website describes the devotional as “An active devotional tool to help you invest your time well, Day by Day Devotions contains a full year's worth of age-appropriate teaching.” After using this tool with our kids for several weeks, I love it. The devotions are short, to the point, and at a 5-8 year old’s level without dumbing down the principles.

Another tool I like a lot is John MacArthur’s A Faith to Grow On
(http://www.christianbook.com/Christian/Books/product?item_no=304423&event=1010SBF12492531010) . It contains chapters on subjects like Creation, Sin, Faith, and Forgiveness. Subjects that can seem to difficult to explain to a child yet with the right tools can be discussed with confidence. I love the design of this book, too. It is filled with little captions, bright pictures, and is fun to flip through. It is designed to answer the questions of children who have accepted Christ as their Savior.

Struggling with how to encourage your children to pray more than a memorized prayer? I really like Stormie Omartian’s The Power of a Praying Kid (http://www.christianbook.com/Christian/Books/product?item_no=901221&netp_id=373079&event=ESRCN&item_code=WW). The book has a kid-friendly design and puts many of her principles in to is to grasp chunks. It is designed for kids in the 8-11 age bracket, but I have used it periodically with my 6 year old.

Abigail loves Shelia Walsh’s God’s Little Princess Devotional Bible (http://www.christianbook.com/Christian/Books/product?item_no=308798&netp_id=439725&event=ESRCN&item_code=WW ). She received it for a birthday present and it’s at a level that an early reader can read many of the words – perfect for child-parent reading. I love how God’s Little Princess teaches girls that they are royal princesses in a light, fun manner. The Devotional Bible carries over that theme while telling Bible stories with fun manner quizzes, beauty tips, etc. interspersed with the stories. It’s a devotional that my daughter begs me to read to her, so that puts it at the top of my list.

Another one everyone in our family has enjoyed is The Rhyme Bible (http://www.christianbook.com/Christian/Books/product?item_no=08299&netp_id=163742&event=ESRCN&item_code=WW) . The pictures are delightful watercolors and the stories are told in …rhyme. It amazes me how well the stories flow, without losing any key details, and yet they are such fun to read and listen to.

Final one for today – and I hope you’ll leave some of your favorites in the comments – I like the Little Boys/Girls Storybook for Fathers & Sons/Mothers & Daughters (http://www.christianbook.com/Christian/Books/product?item_no=4596X&netp_id=235221&event=ESRCN&item_code=WW) by Carolyn Larsen. Then of course, there’s the Family Night Tool Chests published by Cook Communications. . .

My point: there are so many tools available to us. If you don’t know where to start on the journey of discipling your children, take one hour and flip through these and many other resources at your local Christian Bookstore. You’ll find something that will work well for your family.

Now, if I can keep from being overwhelmed by everything that’s available!

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