For the word of God is alive and powerful. It is sharper than the sharpest two-edged sword, cutting between soul and spirit, between joint and marrow. It exposes our innermost thoughts and desires. -Hebrews 4:12
Welcome to Family Faith and Fun Fridays! As the week winds down and I anticipate more family time over the weekend, I often ask God for one good idea that will enable me to bring the Word to life and bring our family together. Usually, the activity overflows out of something the Lord has been teaching me through His Word during the week. I’d like to invite you to join me and my family in the adventure. Sometimes I’ll post things we’ve tried; other times I’ll post an idea in the works. If you’ve got thoughts to add or suggestions on how to adapt or improve the activity, please don’t hesitate to comment. Enjoy!
We don't always need a "teachable lesson" or a carefully chosen Bible verse to water our children's faith. Sometimes, we simply need to carve out unhurried moments in our busy lives to play. In the words of Susie Larson, "We have a capable and loving heavenly Father who carries the world on His shoulders so we don't have to. When, amidst the stresses of life, we play and laugh and sing with our children, we sent them the strong message that ultimately we believe that God is in control and that He is faithful." (Growing Grateful Kids).
So, yesterday, with Susie's wise words fresh in my mind, I set aside my weary spirit after a long week and decided to fully engage the goofy fun of April fool's day. Though April first is usually my least favorite holiday, I was reminded of the power of laughter as my children delighted in the spirit of fun that this serious -by-nature mom established with a few simple pranks.
I caught the girls off-guard at breakfast when I salted Lizzy's cereal and spread a hidden layer of curry powder beneath the strawberry jelly that topped Hannah's toast. The sputters and screams quickly turned into fits of laughter, and as Lizzy ran out the door to catch the bus, she hollered over her shoulder, "We should laugh that much every morning, Mom. I feel so AWAKE now!"
When the bus returned after school, I served up "normal snacks," but later, I set a small plate of Twinkies on the counter. After playing downstairs for a while, Hannah raced through the kitchen and spied the un-announced treat. "Oh, yummy! Can I have one of these?"
I nodded with a smile and waited with my camera tucked behind my back. Little did my middle child know that while she was busy finger painting in the craft room, I had filled the Twinkies with mayonnaise! April Fool's!
Last night, when I tucked my tired crew into bed, I giggled with each one about the silly antics of our day. But more poignant than our laughter was Joshua's prayer of gratitude as he snuggled under his covers: "Dear Gawd, Thanks for making Mommy so funny today. It was almost like having a birthday but without a cake!"
As Susie Larson reminds us, "Engaging in fun times lets our children know that they are super valuable to us. As human beings, we put our time into the things we care about. And so, when we make time for frivolous fun with our kids, it lets them know that we are honored and blessed to spend our gift of time with them. For parents who love Jesus, making room for fun is like planting seeds of faith in the landscape of our lives.: (Growing Grateful Kids).
This would be a great weekend to set aside some time for play. Need a few ideas?
*Hold silly relay races in the yard-- Try running with your legs tied together, racing with sleeping bag gunny-sacks, running backwards or crossing the yard doing somersaults.
*Play balloon tennis- hit a balloon back and forth using kitchen spatulas or wooden spoons. Don't let the balloon touch the ground.
*Go to a park and use wax paper on the slides (get ready for a speedy trip!)
*Invite the kids to put on a play, a talent show, or a puppet show.
*Play hide and seek in the dark with flashlights.
Have Fun enjoying an "almost birthday" style celebration!
The Overflow: Our mouths were filled with laughter, our tongues with songs of joy. Then it was said among the nations, “The LORD has done great things for them.” -Psalm 126:2
I am a lover of Jesus Christ, a seeker of abundant life, and a freelance writer and speaker. I’ve got a handful of children, a home full of laughter and a life full of noise. I’m the frequent hostess of kitchen-floor dance contests, meal time talk-a-thons and dirty laundry campaigns. I love the sound of my children’s laughter, the feeling of my husband’s hand in mine, and the smell of fresh-brewed coffee. I make my home in the Midwest where tulips bloom and neighbors smile. While my laundry baskets are NEVER empty, my soul sometimes is. When all is said and done, I don’t want my minivan to be the only thing crammed to capacity. I want a soul that’s filled to the brim, too. I want to live the life Jesus dreamed for me when he declared, "I have come that (you) may have life, and have it to the full" (John 10:10). As I do, I hope to splatter my world with joy and leave puddles of faith in my wake.