September 2015


How we make choices that impact our lives and our relationships with others and how we find the strength to avoid temptations and make the right choices is in this issue.

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Hard Choices

One: Paul said: “I don’t do the good I want to do; instead, I do the bad things I don’t want to do. And that makes me very unhappy! I can do the good I want to do only when I ask God for help.” (Romans 7:19, 24-25, paraphrase)

All: Sometimes we feel the way Paul felt, too, like times when we’ve done something wrong and we don’t tell the truth about it. more

08/28/2015 at 01:16 pm

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Helping Kids Make Good Choices

As parents, grandparents, Christian educators—as people who love children—we may sometimes feel overwhelmed by the choices that face our kids today. In some sense, there’s nothing new about having to choose. Since Eve was tempted by the serpent in the garden, humans have been making choices. And some of the choices our children face today are no different from the ones we faced and continue to face: whether to speak up when we see someone being treated unfairly, whether to be a faithful friend, whether to choose a lifestyle that helps us maintain health and wellness, whether to remain honest when a bit of dishonesty seems to promise a reward of some sort. The list could go on, right? more

08/28/2015 at 01:16 pm



Conversation Starters

* What kind of choices did you have to make today? Were there any that were hard to make? What made that choice hard?

* When you have a hard choice to make, what helps you decide? Are there other things that could help you?

* Can you think of a time when you helped someone else (a family member, a friend, a classmate, etc.) make a hard choice? Do you think that person appreciated your help? How did you know you were being helpful?

* What are some of the hard choices our family has faced in the past? What did we learn that could help us when we face tough decisions in the future?

08/28/2015 at 01:15 pm


The List

15 Tips for an Awesome School Year


Recently, Pockets readers shared tips for a great school year with us. Here are some of their ideas. more

08/28/2015 at 01:11 pm

cute siblings

A Litany on Psalm 139

One: You know, God, when I sit and when I stand.

All: God, you know me so well! more

07/30/2015 at 02:14 pm

Where in God’s World is Austria?

Fascinating Facts about Austria

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This landlocked country in central Europe is home to 8 million people and is a little smaller than the state of Maine. About a fourth of the people live in the capital city of Vienna. more

07/30/2015 at 02:13 pm

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Competition seems to be a natural element of our make-up as humans, and it’s a huge part of our culture. We compete for jobs—and parking spaces. We spend hours glued to TVs watching our favorite sports teams or “reality” music, dance, or cooking competitions. We enroll our kids in sports leagues and music lessons and push them to do their best at all times. And that’s only the beginning! more

06/26/2015 at 07:26 am

Where in God’s World is Niger?

Fascinating Facts about Niger


This African country is home to about 14 million people. It’s the largest country in West Africa, about twice the size of Texas. About 80 percent of Niger’s landmass is covered by the Sahara desert.


06/26/2015 at 07:24 am


June Conversation Starters

What are the things our family does to help care for God’s creation? Why is it important to do those things?

Are there things we could be doing differently to help take better care of creation? What would help us do those things?

What’s your favorite part of God’s creation (place, animal, weather, etc.)? Why is that your favorite?

What’s one thing you personally will do this week to be a better creation caretaker?

06/03/2015 at 09:46 am


God Created Everything

Plan a family outdoor activity, such as a hike, this month. Before you leave, do this litany together. Then during your outing make a list of some of the things you see that God created and the days they were created in the creation story from Genesis 1 (for example, a bluebird, day 5). When you return home, place your list in your family Bible at Genesis 1 and repeat together the prayer at the end of this litany. more

06/03/2015 at 09:44 am

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