Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Jesus walks on placemats!

This week it was Lily's turn to lead 'Super Family Bible Night' and she decided she wanted to do the story where Jesus walks on water because she didn't believe that someone could really walk on water and she wanted to see whether the bible really said that. And she found out it did!!

Lily began the night with a grand welcome (imagine theatre arms & voice) "Welcome to Super Family Bible Night and tonight we are reading the story where Jesus walks on water" (insert groan from Toby).

We read the story and Lily explained to us that the reason God put this story in the Bible was so that we need to pray like Jesus did on the mountain and that we don't need to be scared when we walk on water - Hmmm....

We did talk about the importance of prayer & the faith it took Peter to step out of the boat - but to keep his eyes fixed on Jesus.

Lily's activity was for us to make place mats representing the story we had read. I think we all did a good job (altho now I'm going to have to use a placement for the next few weeks)

For more information on bible engagement go to www.milktomeat.com.au

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Elijah & the Lego Prophets

This week's Super Family Bible Night was the story of Elijah and the prophets of Baal (1 Kings 18) and it was a fun night of Lego creation! We'd done a few weeks of drama and so tonight it was time to get creative. Lego creative...
We read the story together, thoroughly enjoying how Elijah teased the prophets of Baal and imaging how Elijah's altar was burned up by the fire of God (imagine lots of boom, crash, burning noises by Toby) . We then got about creating Lego altars, Toby was particularly excited as he loves anything to do with Lego and the thought of making an altar that would be destroyed at the end was exciting. What I didn't realise it that it is actually really hard to make a altar out of Lego but we had fun trying. And much to Toby's disappointment we didn't burn the Lego afterwards.

If you'd like further information on bible engagement go to www.milktomeat.com.au

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Tongues of fire and ... chilli, salt, pepper, garlic...

Last night was Adam's turn to lead Super Family Bible Night and we started with a tasting game. With a mix of spices both sweet, savory and spicy we rolled the dice and began our tasting. It wasn't to bad a first, a little salt and garlic but then we rolled a "2" and that spice was HOT cayenne pepper!!!! Which sent us all running for the bathroom and a glass of water (nasty daddy!).

But it was a good illustration as it really illustrated the point of the story, our tongue can be like a spark that can start a blazing fire (our tongues certainly were burning).

This week we talked about how we can use our tongue for good things and for bad things, we explored bad things first - which the kids took great delight being able to stick their tongue out at us, and explore the mean and rude things a tongue can do and say. Thankfully we didn't spend too much time there we moved onto the good things our tongue can do and say. Things that are kind, compassionate and thoughtful. Then we used our tongue for good and devoured a delicious chocolate pudding Lily had made. Yum, yum.

It was a fun night, with lots of laughs and some rude bits but I think we all got a greater understanding of the importance of such a small part of our body and the impact it can have both good and bad.

James 3:5-6 Likewise, the tongue is a small part of the body, but it makes great boasts. Consider what a great forest is set on fire by a small spark. The tongue also is a fire, a world of evil among the parts of the body. It corrupts the whole body, sets the whole course of one’s life on fire, and is itself set on fire by hell.

For more information on bible engagement go to www.milktomeat.com.au

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Stuff happens! How to avoid "stuff" to read the Word.

I've been reading a great eBook this week called "Don't ask stupid questions" by Tim Brownson and I was particulary challenged by a chaper called "Stuff happens!!"

He starts the chapter off reflecting on his day... "I was determined to take it easy and just relax. I had worked every day for 10 straight days and envisioned a day by the pool maybe even with a cold beer and a good book. I like relaxing, it’s enjoyable and good for you so why wouldn’t anybody do it as much as possible?

I’ll tell you why, because of.... Stuff, that’s why.

Stuff is designed to stop you doing what you really want to do, Stuff expands to fill available time, Stuff arrives when you least expect it and Stuff does its utmost to throw you off track. It has a contract to adhere to because its job is to test you to the limits of your endurance and then just a little bit more. Like a maternal aunt that doesn’t realize she outstayed her welcome in 6 months ago, Stuff will hang around ad infinitum if you don’t throw it out."

As I was reading this a thought dawned on me, that "stuff" interfere's with all areas of my life, but I was particulary struck with how "stuff" interferes with my bible reading and time with God. I start the day with the best intensions, but then "stuff happens"... the laundry floods, the kids are sick, an urgent email comes in, but not all of my "stuff" is bad, I have friends pop over for coffee, I chat on the phone to family, I fall asleep on the couch. But it's all "stuff" and it has taken over my day. I was pondering this and feeling a little overwhelmed when I read the next paragraph from Tim's eBook.

"Can Stuff be beaten?
Oh yes, it surely can if only we remember how. Unlike nature, Stuff loves a vacuum. It loves it because that’s its job, to fill it and fill it quickly. So don’t give it chance! Plan out your day, even the ones that do not involve work. If you need 4 hours to chill and relax then write it down in your planner or on your calendar as you would any other appointment, the same goes for the gym, or meditating or even watching TV if that is what helps you relax. Be selfish with your time when you need to be.

This sounds like a lot of trouble and if Stuff never manages to get its talons in you then it may be unnecessary. However, if you are the type of person that gets to the end of the day and wonders where it went and why you didn’t get much done. Then you need to act and act quickly."

Question: Is Stuff dominating your life and if so, what do you intend to do about it?

I realised I need to plan ahead and to set my time with God as a higher priority than it has been and to not let "stuff" get in the way between me and God.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Understanding where we are in the story - Mark Sayers

"We may read scripture, or hear it in Church, but often is fragmented. So many of our cultures good things are the fruit of an attempt to live out of the biblical story, but as time goes by, we as a people become distant from the story of God’s creation of, and involvement with the world."
"That is why I believe it is essential that leaders, regularly take your Churches, small groups, ministries, teams through the story of the bible in a macro sense. In order to again understand the plot, the pace, the turns, the twists of the biblical narrative out of which we live. Yes we need more effective and more relevant Churches and ministries, but perhaps more importantly we need the people of God to live their lives out of the Biblical story." Mark Sayers

Monday, May 2, 2011

A weekend in ER: Coronary Care Unit

What Can I Learn From This Situation?

This past weekend I found myself heading to the ER with heart issues, being rushed into hospital with chest pains is not a good thing for a 33yo woman, after multiple tests and checkups, while waiting for results and trying to sleep in a very noisy hospital wing (you know, old people in CCU cough very loudly, it sound like they are going to bring up their stomach, a lung or something they cough so hard - it's disgusting - much admiration for doctors & nurses!)

So while there, I found myself blocking my ears but more seriously wondering what can I learn from this situation? Most situations do contain a positive element even in the most difficult and frightening of situations. So what have I learnt? God is good! I live in a country that is able to check and work quickly in emergencies. My family and friends are amazing - we have had meals, kids taken care of and people visiting to share love and encouragement. My reliance of God, doctors and others for their wisdom, expertise and love - rather than on myself.

This week I've been reading 2 Samuel, particularly chapter 3&4 with my bible engagement group. We've been diving into the character of David - particularly his early leadership, his strengths in some circumstances and his weaknesses in others. His ability to trust and be faithful to God in all circumstances - regardless of the situation. How encouraging to see how David responds in crisis -he is fully reliant on God.

God's word is living and active. God uses His Word to speak to us today, in all situations! He is good!

For those interested heart results all clear which is good, well most of them anyway, there's still the little issue of high blood pressure we need to consider, maybe it's time to take that holiday!!

PS - some may ask why a cow - well there's a little story about the cow here http://www.milktomeat.com.au/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=72:kylie&catid=31:general&Itemid=41