Archive - Encouragement RSS Feed

Labor That is Not in Vain

Children Desiring God Blog // Labor that Is Not in Vain

Another Sunday school year is upon us. For those of us involved in children’s and youth ministry, we have another season filled with opportunities and responsibilities to teach the next generation the glorious deeds of the Lord. Yes, this is joyful ministry—at least it should be—but when done with the diligence it deserves, it is also hard work. Here is a great reminder from Jerry Bridges:

A farmer plows his field, sows the seed, and fertilizes and cultivates—all the while knowing that in the final analysis he is utterly dependent on forces outside of himself. He knows he cannot cause the seed to germinate, nor can he produce the rain and sunshine for growing and harvesting the crop. For a successful harvest, he is dependent on these things from God.

Yet the farmer knows that unless he diligently pursues his responsibilities to plow, plant, fertilize, and cultivate, he cannot expect a harvest at the end of the season. (more…)

Hope and Help for Leading a Small Group

Children Desiring God Blog // Hope and Help for Leading a Small Group

In my opinion, being a small group leader entrusted with leading application after the Bible lesson is the most challenging role in the Sunday school classroom. So much depends on following the lead of the Holy Spirit as you try to discern the thoughts and attitudes of the students and then encourage their responses God-ward and heart-ward. And what a challenge that can be…with a group of seven wiggly first graders or a group of seven sports-obsessed fifth-grade boys! So maybe this year you have found yourself in this new role and are not sure what to do. Maybe you even feel frustrated and are ready to simply let the students have their way and be squirrel-y or talk sports. Don’t give up! There is hope and help.

Here is the hope: While it is challenging, being a small group leader can also be one of the most rewarding roles in the classroom.

Here is the help: You can grow in your ability to effectively lead a small group.

Here are a few pointers… (more…)

Recruiting and Retaining Volunteers

Children Desiring God Blog // Recruiting and Retaining Volunteers

One of the most difficult jobs in children’s and youth ministry is recruiting a full staff of volunteers who are not only joyfully motivated, but also adequately trained and equipped. Along with that is the challenge of retaining these volunteers from year-to-year, if at all possible, so that there is a stable, spiritually mature core in your ministry team. How does a ministry leader do this?  (more…)

Why Students Workbooks?

Children Desiring God Blog // Why Student Workbooks

Student Workbooks are one of the most important tools for you to have in your classroom to teach and train the children in your church or school!

Children Desiring God encourages teachers to center their class on two main elements—teaching and application. To aid teachers and small group leaders with the application time, we have developed students workbooks to accompany each curriculum. Our purpose for workbooks is two-fold:

  1. Workbooks help students synthesize the information they learn during the lesson and cement that knowledge in their minds.
  2. Workbooks are a tool to enhance the application process. Students are encouraged to move from head knowledge to heart application—responding to the truths learned.

Workbook Features

Elementary workbooks include two pages for each lesson. There is a review of main ideas, memory verses and Scripture from the lesson as well as age appropriate coloring and application activities. Here are some of our favorite features and benefits of the student workbooks:

  • Children Desiring God Blog // Why Student WorkbooksWorkbooks—especially in our revised curricula—are integrated into the Small Group Application found at the end of each lesson. Students will need the workbooks in order to complete certain portions of the application section. These exercises reinforce important truths taught in the lesson, encourage Bible memory and help students consider how the concepts learned apply to their everyday life.
  • Workbooks for younger children provide them with opportunities for “hands-on” activity—coloring, pasting, stickers, etc. This helps students focus as the adult leader reviews key lesson themes and leads the discussion time.
  • Workbooks for older children provide the students with a variety of opportunities for note-taking during the lesson, small group and individual activities, personal application and further study.
  • Workbooks provide students and parents with a resource that summarizes the precept-upon-precept study, in its entirety. In other words, if a student misses lessons during the year, he or she will still have a complete outline of the study from beginning to end.
  • Workbooks provide the students with a tangible, interactive resource through which the truths presented in the lesson can be reviewed and remembered.
  • Workbooks in our revised curricula feature beautiful, full-color covers with a quick reference guide on the back to remind students what they are learning and help them review truths about God.

 

 

To view other workbook samples, download the Curriculum Samples or take a look at the Workbook Reference Copy in your Classroom Kit.

Workbook Formats

To equip you best, we have made student workbooks available in two formats—printed book or electronic download.

Print Workbooks

Our original format is the traditional printed workbook. Each workbook is printed on sturdy, high-quality paper and spiral bound. They are designed to withstand scribbling markers, glitter glue, lots of writing and children’s fingers turning pages over and over through the year. Just write student names on the front and they are ready to go.

We encourage teachers to keep the workbooks in the classroom during the year for children to work on week after week. At the end of the year, the completed books can be sent home with children as a tool for them to review what was learned with their parents.

Electronic Workbooks

The electronic version is a PDF file that you can license, download and print. Each workbook license is valid for one child for one year. This is a great option if you have the ability to print in your church office or if you are a ministry partner outside the United States who wants to save on shipping costs.

We encourage teachers using electronic workbooks to have students keep their pages in a three-ring binder or folder in class through the year so they have a full book at the end of the curriculum. If storage space is not available in the classroom, you can partner with parents and have them keep a binder at home for the weekly workbook pages.

Visitors

You are welcome to make a copy of a workbook page for one-time or occasional visitors. If your visitor becomes a regular attendee, don’t forget to give them their own book or purchase an electronic license for them.

 


 

To learn more about Student Workbooks, visit the curriculum pages and take a look at the curriculum samples. Feel free to contact us at 877.400.1414 or info@childrendesiringgod.org if you have questions about how to best use workbooks in your class, what format is best for you or how to order.

 

Encouraging Children in Prayer

Children Desiring God Blog // Encouraging Children in Prayer

What kind of pray-ers will our children be? That is a great question to think about. If we want them to be serious about prayer, they must not only be taught but also shown how prayer is to be woven throughout everyday life. Here are some practical tips from Sally Michael to encourage your children in prayer.

  • Gather your children when you hear of a prayer need and ask them to pray with you.
    • EXAMPLE: When a problem comes to your attention, pray about it… “Susie, let’s pray for the people who were in the earthquake.” ™
  • Take advantage of unexpected moments for prayer—spur of the moment prayers.
    • EXAMPLE: When you see an ambulance, pray for the person who has the medical problem.
  • Ask your child to pray for you. Give him specific things he can pray for.
    • EXAMPLE: “I’m having a hard time with a project I am working on for my job. Would you pray for me?” ™
  • Give your child a list of topics to pray for. (more…)

Are We Hindering Children from Coming to Jesus?

Children Desiring God Blog // Are We Hindering Children from Coming To Jesus

In his message “Let the Children Come to Me,” Pastor John Piper examined Luke 18:15-17 and made the following statement,

Disciples of Jesus should remove all hindrances that keep children from coming to Jesus.

He then went on to spell out some hindrances that we should try to remove in ministering to children. Here are excerpts from four of these:

1. Pride …If you are receiving the kingdom yourself like a little child, then you will not do anything to hinder little children from coming to Jesus. But if you are trying to enter the kingdom some other way than by receiving it like a child, then you will probably be a hindrance to children. If you are not childlike toward God, children will probably be beneath you and not worth your time.

So there is a very close connection between your own humility and your ability to lead children to Jesus. The great hindrance to effective ministry to children is pride, and the great gift for ministry to children is humility.
(more…)

Inspiring Youth to Be Fruitful

Children Desiring God Blog // Inspiring Youth to Be Fruitful

Parents and Teachers

Here are some great quotes to read and discuss with the young adults in your life:

Be careful young people that you don’t postpone the burden and blessing of fruitfulness in your life because you use the excuse, “I am only a youth.” God said to Jeremiah, “Do not say, ‘I am only a youth’; for to all to whom I send you, you shall go.” There are some younger than you that you can lead, and there are some older than you that you can serve. But do not say, “I am only a youth,” as though the only thing you are good for is watching videos and playing games, as though there in no ministry for you to do.

(more…)

Unchanged…or Changed?

Children Desiring God Blog // Unchanged or Changed?

But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves. For if anyone is a hearer of the word and not a doer, he is like a man who looks intently at his natural face in a mirror. For he looks at himself and goes away and at once forgets what he was like. But the one who looks into the perfect law, the law of liberty, and perseveres, being no hearer who forgets but a doer who acts, he will be blessed in his doing.—James 1:22-25

How easy it is for us to read the Bible, close the pages of this life-changing book…and walk away unchanged. Our response to God’s Word is much like a man who looks at himself in the mirror and forgets what he looks like.

When a man forgets his reflection in the mirror, is it because there something wrong with the image reflected in the mirror? Is the mirror faulty? No, and neither is God’s Word faulty, though we walk away unchanged. The problem is with us. We read but we do not apply; we do not consider what God’s words mean for our everyday lives.
(more…)

Don’t Waste Your Holiday

Children Desiring God Blog // Don't Waste Your Holiday

What’s your plan for the 4th of July? A day at the lake? Grilling brats and burgers in the backyard? A bike ride? Camping? Time with family and friends? Getting caught up on some yard work? And fireworks, especially if you have children?  All of these can be great ways to spend your 4th, but it might also be good to consider spending 10 or 15 minutes reminding yourself and your children about God’s great gift to us called “government.” What we in the USA call “Independence Day” should, in reality, be called “Dependence Day,” as we acknowledge that it is ultimately God who establishes thrones and rulers—or removes them at His will.

It’s important to teach our children some basic things about government. Consider the words of the Apostle Paul in Romans 13. He lived under Roman rule—a government that promoted pagan beliefs and persecuted the early church—and yet he reminds us of the following… (more…)

A Summer Praise Walk with Children

Children Desiring God Blog // A Summer Praise Walk With Children

When I was a child, and even into my teens, I spent most of my free time outdoors. Whether playing active games with friends, exploring the neighborhood woods, or simply laying in the grass and trying to identify different shapes or figures in the clouds, we spent much of our summer disconnected from media or other electronics. Now that I am an adult, I have found I still benefit from enjoying the outdoors, as it evokes praise and admiration of God as I experience first-hand the wonders He has created.

One way we can encourage our children to meditate on and give God praise for His wondrous works is to go on a “Praise Walk.” How? First, read together Psalm 148. Help them identify all of the created things in the verse that are to give praise to God. (more…)

Page 1 of 2812345»1020...Last »