Coming This April

Here’s a quick look ahead to what we’ll be learning in Heroes Gate over the next few weeks:

April 6 – Toddlers through 4th grade will discover no one is beyond Jesus’ ability to love as seen through His interactions with the tax collector, Zacchaeus (Luke 19:1-10). The lesson’s take-home point will be: “Jesus loves everyone.” Club 56 kids will discuss the question: “Why isn’t being good good enough?” – Understanding that good works are not enough, but grace is.

April 13 – Toddlers through 4th grade will hear how Jesus stood up for God and for those being taken advantage of at the Temple (Matthew 21:12-17; Mark 11:15-19; Luke 19:45-48). The lesson’s take-home point will be: “Look out for others.” Club 56 kids will talk about the question: “Why doesn’t everyone believe in Jesus?” – Understanding that we need to accept Christ’s gift to enjoy the benefits of being close to God.

April 20 – Toddlers through 4th grade will celebrate Easter with the story of Jesus’ death and resurrection (Matthew 26:27-28:10; Mark 14:12-16:11; Luke 22:1-24:12; John 18:1-20:23). The lesson’s take-home point will be: “God loves us more than we can imagine.” Club 56 kids will look into “Why did Jesus have to die?” – Understanding the sacrificial system for forgiveness through God’s viewpoint.

April 27 – Toddler through 4th grade will learn about the amazing grace of Jesus as He forgives Peter (John 21:1-19). The lesson’s take-home point will be: “God forgives us when we mess up.” There will be no regular Club 56 lesson due to other classroom events happening this day.

Spring Fever

May 2011 118
By Paula Bowlby, Associate Early Childhood Pastor
Woodland Hills Church

It is the time of year that you can almost smell spring in the air. After the long, hard winter, you and your children are ready to throw open the windows, breathe the fresh air, and be out in nature again. Daylight savings has kicked in, so we are up later, enjoying the sunshine. New life will soon start to sprout throughout God’s creation. Easter is coming, and, before you know it, summer will be on our doorstep.

Spring is a time when I tend to reflect on nature, God, and his amazing creation. It is a great time to plant a seed or start an indoor garden with children and talk about new life as we remind them what an amazing God we serve.

With younger children, you can plant a seed and talk about how everything starts out small like this seed but then grows bigger. God made animals, plants, and humans who need food, water, and sunshine and light. Talk to your kids about how God provides food for the seed in the earth and how he gives the seed water and sunshine. Watch your plant grow and eventually, you could transplant it outside and see it bear fruit in the form of a flower or vegetable.

With older children, you can talk about all of the above, but you can also take it one step further by talking about how God gives us with what we need through his Word. We all need food, water and sunshine in our lives, but we also need God and his wisdom to help us learn and grow spiritually. This can lead you into talking about the meaning of Easter and Jesus’ death on the cross because of his great love for us.

This spring, take advantage of the “teachable moments” all around us. Breathe in God’s love and the beauty of what he created with your children.

God’s Big Story

The Bible is made up of 66 books containing thousands of stories.  Because of that, it’s easy for us to think of the Bible as a book of individual, somewhat connected stories.  But the truth is the Bible’s many stories come together to create one big story – God’s Story!  Each story is connected to all the others.  Here’s a video we encourage you to watch as a family to see the broader story revealed to us through the Bible.

Family Discussion Questions:
1. What are some of your favorite parts of God’s Big Story?
2. What parts of God’s Story show His amazing love and forgiveness?
3. What can you do to be a hero in His Story?