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What is in the Box?

JWS Proofs

There is something special about receiving a package and experiencing the excitement of slicing through the tape or ripping the tab off in order to get the first glimpse of what is inside the box.

At Children Desiring God, hearing the UPS lady walk through the door to our offices always gets everyone’s attention. Undoubtedly, someone will ask her the big question, “What is it?” As she attempts to catch her breath after hauling our boxes up the steep stairs to the third floor, she will respond with something along the lines of: “How would I know? You are the ones who ordered it. All I can see is the box.”

The box—a dirty, travel-worn and sometimes damaged package.

In a way, our hearts are like the cardboard boxes that arrive dirty and travel-worn because we are all born with darkened, sinful hearts that fail to reflect God’s perfect righteousness. We are damaged, and there is nothing we can do in our own power to change that. But, God can! God in His mercy sent us a perfect “package” that is the only solution for our sin problem. The gift is Jesus, the Savior! Because of Jesus’ perfect righteousness and His death on the cross, He can make our sinful hearts new so that we might reflect God’s glory as we should. These are some of the truths kindergarteners are taught in our curriculum, Jesus, What a Savior!

So, back to the UPS delivery. Last Friday, when we received our deliveries, the exciting answer to “What is in the box?” was: proofs from the printer for the revised version of Jesus, What a Savior!

We are so excited to have this first set of proofs in hand after working diligently over the past two years to revise Jesus, What a Savior! What’s different about the revised version? While the truths being taught to kindergarteners will remain the same, we added many improvements:  lesson content, format, and illustrations have been updated making the lessons easier to teach; the visuals have been replaced with more colorful, original artwork; and the workbook is more interactive for the needs of young children.

We are now in the last stage of our publishing process and we are working hard to ensure that all of the details are in place so the curriculum will be ready for your classrooms.

We hope that you too will soon have the excitement of receiving a box in the mail, full of the revised Jesus, What a Savior! curriculum. Since you will have to wait a little longer before you can place an order, we want to give you a sneak peek inside the box. Have fun looking at a Sample of the revised curriculum, as well as the Scope & Sequence which will give you an overview of all the lessons. More information about the revision process is also available on our Revised Curriculum page.

Be on the lookout over the next few weeks for more information about Jesus, What a Savior! and for the official curriculum release date. Also, check back Friday to enter to win a special prize we are giving away in the Friday Contest.

The Struggle Toward Conversion

The Struggle

Does this story sound at all familiar?

A nine-year-old child, who has always shown an interest in spiritual things and a tenderness toward the Gospel, suddenly gives evidence of disinterest or even unbelief. He may even begin to voice antagonism toward prayer, Bible reading, going to church, etc. What’s happening? Should you ignore this as simply a “stage” he is going through?

In our resource, Helping Children to Understand the Gospel, Sally Michael explains the spiritual struggle that many children experience sometime during the ages of 7 to 12 years old, and she offers some wise counsel about how we can help and guide children through this struggle.

Remember that conversion does not always happen instantaneously but often involves a journey of questioning, evaluating, struggling, and learning to trust. Conversion is a process. The struggle is good—the ugliness of the human heart needs to be experienced and grieved over.

Often at this stage, our temptation as adults is to be impatient and jump to the resolution of the struggle—to “insure salvation for the child.” Hence, this is where our faith as sowers is really tested: do we trust God to bring the child through victoriously? Will we trust in the sovereignty and goodness of God? It is at this time of waiting that our sin nature tempts us to take things into our own hands and push the child to make a commitment that he may be unprepared to make. We fear the outcome of the child’s struggle and we want to secure the desired result. But we need to let go—to guide, encourage, point to Jesus by all means, but also to let go and let the child deal with God, and God with the child. We must not try to manipulate a response.
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“Little” Sins and the Smelly Snake

Keep your heart with all vigilance

Have you ever heard a child say something like, But it’s only a little sin. It doesn’t matter that much.? (more…)

Revised and Enhanced Curriculum from Children Desiring God

Children Desiring God's new CEP Curriculum

Children Desiring God is in the process of revising and updating our Sunday School curriculum. This is more than just a “new look.” After 15 years of curriculum publishing, our mission and vision have not changed. We still exist to spread a passion for the supremacy of God in all things so that the next generation may know and cherish Jesus Christ as the only One who saves and satisfies the desires of the heart.

But in our passion to see the next generations delight in Him, we’ve been working to improve the ways we equip teachers, engage students, and impact families. (more…)

What is a mother?

CDG is pleased to offer a new and very timely resource by Sally Michael, Mothers: Disciplers of the Next Generations. Here are some words of wisdom from the booklet to whet your appetite…

  • Motherhood involves a vision, too. It may be conscious or unconscious, well-articulated or haphazard, but the vision that drives us also shapes our attitudes, our actions, our influence and, to some degree, the outcome of our mothering. What is your vision of mothering? Is it shaped by the Word…or by the world?
  •  As mothers, it is tempting to be consumed with the busyness of life—getting meals, changing diapers, bringing children to school, doing laundry, attending to the myriad of necessary tasks to manage a household and family—at the neglect of our spiritual development. Not only is this personal spiritual suicide, but it is detrimental to our children. If we would nurture the faith of our children, we must first nurture our own growing relationship with the Living God.
  •  Our primary struggle in raising our children is not subduing their wills, knowing how to teach them the Bible, or even knowing how to pray for them. Our greatest struggle will be in striving to love and worship God above all else, so that we can overflow in imparting that love to our children.
  •  Our primary calling as Christian mothers is to be Christ’s ambassadors to our children, speaking His truth, and reflecting His heart to them. Christ has given us a divine calling as ministers of reconciliation. All our other responsibilities pale in comparison to this one great charge.
  •  Only as we are united to Christ, can we truly fulfill our calling as mothers. So our vision for mothering is to be first lovers of Jesus. Of all the mothering responsibilities we have, our first and foremost is to grow as Christians. If we are good Christians, we will be good mothers.

Creative Uses for Helping Children Understand the Gospel

Since it was released in 2009, the booklet Helping Children Understand the Gospel has been used in a number of creative ways. Although it was written to help parents explain the Gospel to their children in an accurate and child-friendly manner, God has multiplied its usefulness to bless the church. Understanding and meditating on the truths of the Gospel is is not just for children, but for families, teachers, youth, young adults and grandparents, too!

In January 2010, Riverpark Bible Church in Fresno, California, used Helping Children Understand the Gospel to begin a church-wide, 10-week, “Ten Truths” study. After encouraging parents to read parts one and two of the booklet on their own, they kicked off the study with a sermon outlining the ten truths. In this video Pastor Dave and Sandy Parker share what they did and what happened:


If you are curious about the Ten Essential Truths of the Gospel that make up the devotional guide in the booklet, here they are:

Truth One: God is the sovereign Creator of all things.
Truth Two: God created people for His glory.
Truth Three: God is holy and righteous.
Truth Four: Man is sinful.
Truth Five: God is just and is right to punish sin.
Truth Six: God is merciful. He is kind to undeserving sinners.
Truth Seven: Jesus is God’s holy and righteous Son.
Truth Eight: God put the punishment of sinners on Jesus.
Truth Nine: God offers the free gift of salvation to those who repent and believe in Jesus.
Truth Ten: Those who trust in Jesus will live to please Him and will receive the promise of eternal life—enjoying God forever in heaven.

Helping Children to Understand the Gospel

Helping booklet

The Gospel is the most important truth one generation can communicate to the next, and God calls parents and teachers to be wise sowers. This calls for accurate, discerning, and intentional practices of cultivating, teaching, and praying in the hope that God, who gives the growth, will work in children’s hearts to yield hundredfold harvests of faith.

This booklet was developed to help parents and teachers think about what elements should be considered when presenting the Gospel to children, including:

  • Preparing the hearts of children to hear the Gospel;
  • Discerning stages of spiritual growth;
  • Communicating the essential truths of the Gospel; and
  • Presenting the Gospel in an accurate and child-friendly manner

This helpful resource includes a 10-week family devotional to help parents explain the Gospel to their children.

Watch the blog later this week for a chance to win a free copy of this booklet!

If you don’t win one, you can also purchase the booklet. It is available in two formats: print and electronic.

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