Can a simple, uplifting, tucked-in note be a huge gift?

Once again, they will go off to school. Carrying a backpack filled with practical supplies: pencils, paper, and pocket folders.Walking upstairs

Did you include a note for your child to find?

Perhaps when she opened her lunch? Or concealed in his pencil case?
Or tucked into the sleeve of a carried-along jacket?

One of several backpack or lunch box blessingsDid you know that your note can speak powerful words? The very thoughts of God: a blessing.

Writing a note is a special chance to bless your child.

Get a set of free Lunch box / Backpack Blessing Notes here. (Two samples are shown.)

Another backpack blessing cardBlessing your child empowers them — indicating who they are and who they are meant to be.

 

Tuck encouraging words into your child’s day.

Get your Lunch box / Backpack Blessing Notes here. Want to write them out by hand? Feel free to copy!

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Photo credits:
Going up the steps by Jake Hills, who has released this photo to the Public Domain. Offered at unsplash.com.
Backpack blessings created with various Public Domain clipart from wpclipart.com.

How to Raise Lifelong Learners

A new school year approaches. Ready or not, time to get back into the learning mode.

a child walks to school

If your child is experiencing even the tiniest hint of anxiety or trepidation about the re-start of school, remind them that God gave us an example of how we can consider learning. God’s example is in the life of Jesus, who teaches us to view ourselves as “disciples” – and what is a disciple but a student!

As disciples we are all life-long learners. How can we help our children to view themselves in this manner? Start off by talking about things you’ve learned this summer. Invite your child to share their list. A new swim stroke? Mastered a new game? Made a new friend? Perhaps they’ve learned what the word “Testament” means (as part of our summer video series on What’s in the Bible).

Ask what your children intend to learn over the next school year.

Make “SMART” goals – Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, and Timely. (It’s a school-ish way to think!)

  • Memorize the multiplication tables through 10?
  • Finish reading one new book a week?
  • Expand your sight vocabulary by 50 words?

But some worthy goals are harder to measure, such as learning to be more caring.

A young boy comforts a toddler

What will help your kids to build confidence, kindness, courage, perseverance, respect, enthusiasm, responsibility, or generosity?

Here are ways to help achieve those hard-to-measure goals!

  • Read the Bible every day. (Just a few verses! How about reading for our next Rotation? Acts 9:1-22.
  • Learn a Bible verse by heart every month. For our upcoming Rotation (starting on Sept. 11th) try 2 Corinthians 5:17.
  • Ask “I wonder” questions around the dinner table.
  • Look for ways to practice being caring, kind, and generous.
What is your family planning to learn?


Photo credits:
School starts by Gideon Tsang, and “Take Care Dude” by Thijs Weenk, who both licensed these photos on Flickr under a Creative Commons License.

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Off to school? Don’t leave without this…

Backpack? Check.
Lunch? Check.
Permission slip? Check.
Pencils? Check.

the kids, with their heavy backpacks, head out to the bus

Sounds like they are ready to head off to school. But wait! Don’t let them leave home without a blessing.

To your child, a blessing is a gift. It is a reminder that God loves them.

A blessing is words you speak to your child from your heart, but really they are words from God. God asks you to be his mouthpiece: to give your child words to carry with them. A blessing is meant to replace secular statements; words that can overwhelm and shut down. Such as:

  • You can’t do that. Why try.
  • Nobody believes in you.
  • You aren’t good enough. You have to be perfect.

Instead give your child these words:

Open quote markGod has given you skills and talents that this world needs.
May you be surrounded in God’s love, peace and protection.

Words can have great power. They can over run a child with disbelief or fill them with confidence. When we speak a blessing, we empower our children. We reach down into the deep well of living water that Jesus offers and draw up a refreshing drink. (John 4:13-14)

Send off each child with a blessing, reminding them that Jesus goes with them.

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Photo credits:
Off to school by woodleywonderworks, who licensed this photo on Flickr under a Creative Commons License.

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Are you sending off your kids with heartfelt wisdom?

Children board a school bus as parents say good-bye

September is here. School started yesterday.
Did you send your child off with a blessing? With words that when continually spoken, become the playbook they run in their heads?

It’s never too late to start! To help form this new habit, here is a blessing to use. Add on to “See you this afternoon,” with…

Go with the confidence of God’s love.

It’s simple. It’s short. It’s easily said.

How about a new blessing every Wednesday…
“Wednesday’s Weekly Blessing.”
It’s got a catchy sort of ring to it. Let’s try it out. OK? (At least for September.)

Later added note: We kept up with blessings on Wednesday’s for quite some time! Blessings never expire. Look for one that appeals to you!

Click on a box if you would like to…
A check-box Satisfy your curiosity about why you should bless your child.
A check-box View other suggested blessings.

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Photo credit:
Boarding the school bus by Lwp Kommunikáció, licensed on Flickr under Creative Commons (CC BY 2.0).