I don’t know about you, but in my brood of scallywags we definitely need a refocusing on the theme of love every now and again.
And by every now and again I mean every flipping hour of every single day. But we all know that’s not going to happen and so I’m taking the month of February to do a study with them on the theme of love.
It’s nothing super innovative or mind-blowing. But it doesn’t always have to be. All I want to do is set in place a little reminder of what exactly love is and what exactly love is not.
In Matthew 7:20 scripture talks about knowing them (God’s followers) by their fruits and in Galatians 5:22 it says that one of these fruits is love. I wanted my boys to tangibly see if there was fruit in their life, to mark the evidences of love which often go missed. I mean, it can be a challenge to actually pinpoint the love amongst all of the bickering, comparing, jealousy, and straight up anger. (Brothers! Amiright?!)
But the truth is, I knew it was there and this exercise was as much for me as for them because often I can miss it and end up feeling like things are all bad all the time.
So, I simply made a list from 1 Corinthians 13 about all the things that love is and all the things that love, most definitely, is not.
(don’t hate because the sun is shining so bright in these parts lately 🙂
Then each day, at the end of our bible time, we are going to choose one thing to focus on. It could be a positive – something love is, or a negative – something love is not.
After they’ve each chosen one thing, we pray about whatever we’ve chosen and we ask God to help us do these things, or not do these things, as the case may be.
The next night at bible time we talk through our day and we see if we were able, with God’s help, to be more loving that day. If not, we keep praying and keep that same characteristic of love until we see one simple evidence of it in our day.
Because I like the kids to have tangibles, I grabbed some sticks I had laying out on the deck and I stuck them in a vase. Then I stuck some string to the back of these small hearts so that they could be hung up. Each time one of the kids can share a moment of a time they showed love, whether they have a story of being patient or kind, or a time they really wanted to boast or be rude but they bit their tongue, or a time they didn’t insist on their own way, even thought they really wanted to, they hang a heart on the branches.
I’m hoping by the end of February, our chosen love month, they will be able to look at the branches and see that there is, in fact, fruit in their life!
It’s a simple plan but I think it might be good for them to see. Do you want to join us? Grab a branch and some hearts and string or a giant piece of paper and some cut out hearts with tape on the back and stick ’em up there. Let’s help our kids see the fruit in their life and help them to rely on Jesus to help them with it. Don’t forget to pray with them about it! We don’t want them simply to develop more will-power but to know that with Jesus they can do things they didn’t think they could!
If you’re joining us, tell me how you’re going to do it or send me a picture of your creation. I’m sure yours will be much more pinterest-worthy than mine and I’d love to see!