December 2014


We want this issue to help children begin to understand how Jesus’ birth, God’s incarnation, is made new to us each Advent and Christmas.

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Ideas for December

As we enter the Advent season, many of us find ourselves poised (or braced) for what feels like a headlong rush toward Christmas. And as much as we may love many of the traditions of the season (even the secular ones), we also find ourselves longing for more meaning, more focus on Christ, more connection with those we love.

Try some of these ideas, many adapted from our December issue:


11/25/2014 at 08:00 am


The List-December 2014

5 Ideas for Family Fun in Advent

by Karen Leet


Advent is a time to remember that Jesus came to be “Emmanuel”—God with us. more

11/25/2014 at 07:55 am

children church christmas


Conversation Starters

* What are your favorite Christmas traditions? Why do you enjoy those? Are there any of our traditions that you don’t enjoy?

* What can we do to make sure as a family that we’re keeping Jesus as the focus of our celebration of Christmas?

* How did someone show you God’s love today?

* How did you show God’s love to someone today?


11/25/2014 at 07:54 am


Advent Devotions

by Janet R. Knight

You can buy Advent wreaths or make your own by setting four candles in a circle and surrounding them with greenery. Advent wreaths usually have three purple candles and one pink candle or four purple candles. (The pink candle is lit on the third Sunday of Advent.) A taller, white candle (the “Christ candle”), representing Jesus, goes in the center of the wreath.

First Sunday of Advent

One: Advent begins today.

All: Advent is a time when we wait for Jesus.

Light the first candle.

One: God’s people waited a long time for the Messiah to come.

All: And each year we wait for Jesus to come again into our hearts and homes.

One: The prophet Isaiah wrote, “No one has ever heard, more

10/31/2014 at 11:59 am

Child in Awe of Autumn

Thanksgiving Prayer Calendar

Thanksgiving Prayer Calendar


Since November is the month when our readers in the U.S. celebrate Thanksgiving, here are some things to give thanks for in your prayers each day this month.


10/31/2014 at 11:41 am


Living Thankfully

by Lisa Swanson

Here are some fun ways for your family to live with thankful hearts this month! more

10/31/2014 at 11:36 am



Conversation Starters


* What’s one thing that made you feel really thankful today? How did you express that feeling of thankfulness?

* Has there been a time recently when you didn’t feel thankful? What made it hard to feel thankful? What helped you?

* How do you show that you’re thankful for your blessings? Do you think other people see you as someone who lives thankfully?

* How do you feel when you’ve done something kind for someone and that person doesn’t thank you? How does it feel when someone does thank you?

10/31/2014 at 10:59 am

latvia kids

Teaching Children To Value the Gifts of All

When you get right down to it, all kids are similar. They giggle, fuss, stomp around, yell, joke, and get shy. Our lives are enriched by all the different ways they express themselves. Yet many times, when we encounter someone with a disability, we have difficulty understanding what he or she is telling us.

If we remember that at our most basic levels we all share similarities, we can use our own experiences to understand other people better and to help our children do the same. more

10/01/2014 at 02:15 pm

baseball kids in panama


Conversation Starters


* What gifts do you see in the people in our family? How do those gifts make our life together better?

* How do we use our gifts to help people beyond our family? Are there any other ways we want to use our gifts to help people?

* If you could be given one new talent, what would it be? Why would you choose that? How would you want to use that talent?

* In what ways have people helped you develop your gifts and talents? What was most helpful?

09/30/2014 at 02:18 pm

Where in God’s World is Madagascar?

Fascinating Facts about Madagascar

flag of madagascar


Madagascar is a large island in the Indian Ocean off the coast of southeastern Africa. Scientists believe it broke off from the African continent and drifted to its present location millions of years ago. The island, which is the fourth largest in the world, is home to about 21 million people.


09/30/2014 at 02:15 pm

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