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The Importance of Biblical Literacy Pt. 2

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Most surveys in the last 10 years about Biblical Literacy in the US have been trending downward. You may have seen some of the stats:

  • Fewer than half of adults can name all 4 Gospels.
  • 60% of Americans can’t name 5 of the 10 Commandments.
  • 12% of adults believe that Joan of Arc was Noah’s wife.

The best way to stem the tide of Biblical illiteracy is to train kids to read and love the Bible.

However, just knowing this isn’t enough because it needs to be put into practice. And that can be the most challenging part.

Here is some good advice from Jon Nielson, author of Reading the Bible with Your Kids. We believe if you put this into practice, you’ll strengthen the bond of faith and family by making the Word of God central in your household.

  1. Pick a regular time and place for Bible reading.
  2. Read short chunks.
  3. Stop to explain and gauge comprehension.
  4. Think of age-appropriate questions for discussion.
  5. Connect each passage to Jesus.
  6. Let Bible reading lead to prayer.

The best way to foster a love for God’s Word in your child is to show them what a love for God’s Word looks like. This can be done by reading the Bible with your kids. Based on the NASB, the Power Bible is a tool that can help you do just that, engage your child with an age appropriate presentation of the Bible in a beautifully illustrated and solidly Biblical way.

Not familiar with the Power Bible? Find out why professors from Biola and Westminster endorse this full-color comic format of the Bible.

Learn more here: https://316publishing.com/green-egg-media/

Adam Raccoon Artist /Author Glen Keane Wins an Oscar!

By Blog

At the 90th Academy Awards, Glen Keane received his first Oscar in the Animated Short Film category for directing Kobe Bryant’s “Dear Basketball.”

Glen, a legend in the world of animation is best known for creating Disney characters Ariel in “The Little Mermaid”, Aladdin, Pocahontas, the Beast from “Beauty and the Beast”, Tarzan and Rapunzel in “Tangled”.

Glen is also the creator the Adam Raccoon children’s series, published by our Green Egg Media. The eight titles were originally completed between 1987 and 1995. Glen developed the storylines from material he created for his church’s children’s ministry.

In 2016 Glen partnered with Green Egg Media to get the series back in print as quality hardcover editions. For the new editions Glen drew a map of Master’s Wood where the adventures take place and also updated the cover art on three of the books in the series.

The re-release of the series has been met with excitement as parents and grandparents are now passing down the Adam Raccoon stories to younger generations.

Joni Eareckson Tada says of the series, “The Good News always makes for a great story, especially when it’s told in a fresh, creative, and totally unique way – it’s how I feel about every book in the series, The Adventures of Adam Raccoon. Boys and girls can’t help but see themselves in the antics of little Adam, as well as in the many times he is miraculously redeemed from his errors. Best of all, they will relish in the clever and colorful drawings that convey action, wonder, sorrow and delight. Each of Adam’s stories will be read again and again…the series is that good. I highly recommend The Adventures of Adam Raccoon to pre-schoolers, young readers, teachers, parents, and, yes, even art students!”

To celebrate Glen’s Oscar and his exhibit that opens on March 8th at the Walt Disney Family Museum, Three Sixteen Publishing is offering the limited edition Signature Set of Adam Raccoon for 20% off when you use promo code “March Gladness”.

For more information about Glen and the series, please visit AdamRaccoon.com

To learn about Glen’s faith, please read this story from Gideons International: www.2.gideons.org/blog/Tale_as_Old_as_Time

The Importance of Biblical Literacy

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Our 2018 goal at Green Egg Media is the same one we started with 6 years ago; to get kids excited about and love the Word of God. Bible literacy is an increasing problem in the times we live in. Dr. Al Mohler explains the crisis in one of his blog posts.

Researchers George Gallup and Jim Castelli put the problem squarely: “Americans revere the Bible–but, by and large, they don’t read it. And because they don’t read it, they have become a nation of biblical illiterates.” How bad is it? Researchers tell us that it’s worse than most could imagine. 

Fewer than half of all adults can name the four gospels. Many Christians cannot identify more than two or three of the disciples. According to data from the Barna Research Group, 60 percent of Americans can’t name even five of the Ten Commandments. “No wonder people break the Ten Commandments all the time. They don’t know what they are,” said George Barna, president of the firm. The bottom line? “Increasingly, America is biblically illiterate.” (https://albertmohler.com/2016/01/20/the-scandal-of-biblical-illiteracy-its-our-problem-4/)

So what’s the solution? In the words of Mohler, “Recovery starts at home.” Training your children to love God with all their heart isn’t just the job of their Sunday school teacher. Instead God has assigned parents as the primary Biblical educators of their children (Deuteronomy 6:4-9).

Teaching your kids the Bible can be challenging. The goal isn’t just to give information, but to train your kids to love God’s Word for themselves. There’s a saying, “the one doing the talking is the one doing the learning.” That’s why we’ve created the Power Bible, a tool designed to help foster in your kids a love for God’s Word as they read it for themselves.

Based on the New American Standard Text, the 10 volume, 2,000 page Power Bible accurately portrays the storyline of the Bible in a full-color comic book format. If you know someone who hasn’t heard of the Power Bible, share this link to view our free comic downloads of Esther and David and Goliath.

Throughout 2018 we will raise awareness for the importance of Biblical literacy among children and will provide helpful articles and resources to encourage you along the way.

The Wrong Kind of Friendship

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Consider what James writes:

Do you not know that friendship with the world is enmity with God? Therefore whoever wishes to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God.

Stop and ask yourself, “What is attracting my attention today? The world or God?” Pursuing both is exhausting and weeds will choke out the good things we are trying to grow in our families.

A few sentences later, James writes:

Draw near to God, and he will draw near to you.

Like-mindedness attracts, like 2 magnets. To strengthen our relationship with God, we need to humble ourselves and gain His perfect perspective. He alone is God. Philippians 4:8 is a good place to start cultivating the relationship, to produce growth in our lives…

…whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.

James words bear repeating….

Draw near to God, and he will draw near to you.

Bookends of Grace

By Blog

Paul’s letters contain a lot of instructions and corrections.

“Do this” and “Don’t do that” are found throughout his writings to the young churches.

Consistent components of Paul’s writings were his opening and closing greetings in his letters. Like bookends, the instructions he gave were supported by pillars of grace. This was his signature communication style.

In the midst of the daily parenting and the “do this, don’t do that,” are we also communicating God’s grace consistently?

To do this, we must first daily receive God’s grace in our own lives.

Wake up to His grace, rest within His grace, and receive it afresh each day.

When we begin and end each day, mindful of God’s grace toward us, we will understand better how our perfect God responds to His children’s imperfections. The result is that we will be better equipped to parent in a way where grace and truth are inseparable.

“And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen His glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth.” – John 1:14

“And He has said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for power is perfected in weakness.” Most gladly, therefore, I will rather boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may dwell in me.” – 2 Corinthians 12:9

Mommy Monday NOV WK 5

Cross = Love

By Blog

Out of the many things the cross represents, one thing it clearly represents is Jesus’s love.

When asked what the greatest commandment was in Matthew 22:36-40, Jesus replied:
“‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ This is the great and foremost commandment. The second is like it, ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ On these two commandments depend the whole Law and the Prophets.”

When Christ died on the cross, He fulfilled the two greatest commandments.

He expressed His love for the Father by His perfect obedience and He expressed His love for us by His perfect sacrifice.

Whenever doubts, confusions, and insecurities threaten the condition of your heart, fight against it with the truth and remember the cross.

Overcoming Your Child’s Fear of the Dark

By Bible Verses, Blog

“In him was life, and the life was the light of men. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.”     – John 1:4-5 (ESV)

It is a wondrous thing, the mind of a child. As children age their cognitive abilities increase from 2-3 yrs old and imaginative skills develop. As playtime gets more and more creative, so do the nighttime fears. Children become engrossed with the shadows on the walls, the cracked door of the closet, and the unknown in the dark. Things like stress and villains in children’s entertainment can be causes for a child’s overactive imagination to run wild in the night.

Since every child has their own unique personality, likes and dislikes, you may have to try different methods before you find a few that help them feel safe and secure at bedtime. Here are a few suggestions.

Logical Dismissal

Laying with your child on their bed, scanning the room for shadows, and helping them understand what each shadow is referencing can help solve the issues of an overactive imagination. Whether it be a backpack or a chair, revealing the source of the shadow and moving the object to illustrate how shadows are made can help relinquish the fear and increase your child’s confidence in the safety of the home.

Eliminate the Cause

Consider eliminating the cause of the fear altogether. Installing a nightlight, closing the closet doors fully, leaving the bedroom door ajar, can all alleviate the fear of being alone in the dark. With some detective work, a parent can often reveal the culprit that is causing some of their child’s fear, pinpointing it to a television show, episode, commercial, or movie. In some of these situations it may mean having to make sure that your child does not view that content again. Remember that each child is unique and while one child may love dinosaurs, another may fear them. Learning some of these preferences will help you understand them more fully.

Bedtime Stories

Allow their final nighttime thoughts to be centered on a Bible story before they drift off to sleep. Read to them about their favorite Bible characters or reinforce a lesson taught during Sunday School. Cultivate in them a habit of ending each night with God, helping them fix their minds on what is above (Colossians 3:2).

Prayer

Ask your child for their own prayer requests. Many times the depth of their fears will be explained as they lift up their needs to God. Affirm their prayer and use scripture to reinforce God’s protection for His children. (see list of scriptures below).

Bible Verses (NASB)

  • “For God has not given us a spirit of timidity, but of power and love and discipline.” – 2 Timothy 1:7
  • “Be strong and courageous, do not be afraid or tremble at them, for the Lord your God is the one who goes with you. He will not fail you or forsake you.” – Deuteronomy 31:6
  • “Do not fear, for I am with you; do not anxiously look about you, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, surely I will help you, surely I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.” – Isaiah 41:10
  • “Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” – Philippians 4:6-7

 

List of Power Bible Stories that Focus on Prayer 

 

We hope that some of these tips will provide you the parent with tools to help alleviate your child’s nighttime fears and give everyone the gift of rest.

“When you lie down, you will not be afraid; When you lie down, your sleep will be sweet.”  – Proverbs 3:24 (NASB)

 

 

To be fully known and fully loved!

By Blog

A close friend once confided in me quoting the following as his greatest fear, “To be unknown and loved, to be known and unloved.”

A common fear we can be plagued with in our relationship with God is the fear of being truly found out. Having the depths of our hearts being revealed to Him and facing the possibility of not being accepted and loved can be frightening. Fear breeds insecurity and we entertain deceptive thoughts, telling ourselves lies like; “How can God forgive and love a person like me? If He really knew me, He would never love me.”

However, God corrects and conquers this fear in scripture by showing again and again, the ways in which He loves His people fully and unconditionally.

Take King David for example. Although there were many good things he had done in the name of the Lord – defeating Goliath, bringing back the Ark of the Covenant from the Philistines, and unifying Israel – like all of us, he struggled with sin. There were times when he dishonored God in his roles as a husband, father, and ruler. His failures led to the sins of adultery, lying, and murder.

Scripture teaches God’s amazing grace and that despite David’s sin, he is defined as a man of faith and a man after God’s own heart.

“For time will fail me if I tell of Gideon, Barak, Samson, Jephthah, of David and Samuel and the prophets, who by faith conquered kingdoms, performed acts of righteousness, obtained promises, shut the mouths of lions, quenched the power of fire, escaped the edge of the sword, from weakness were made strong, became mighty in war, put foreign armies to flight.” – Hebrews 11:32-34

“After He had removed him, He raised up David to be their king, concerning whom He also testified and said, ‘I have found David the son of Jesse, a man after My heart, who will do all My will.’” – Acts 13:22

David was a man who did truly love God, worshipped Him wholeheartedly, and lived a life of earnest and sincere repentance. However, it wasn’t his roles or skills that merited God’s favor. Instead, it was simply due to the God’s incomprehensible, merciful, and abundant love.

In His omniscience, God knew what David was going to do throughout his lifetime. Yet God loved him.

Since God created us in our inmost being, He knows us deeply and intimately. He clearly sees the depths of our hearts and knows all of our secret sins. Because He is fully God nothing is hidden from Him and still He loves us and offers us that loving relationship.

Today, in this moment, allow the Holy Spirit to cleanse your thought life of misrepresentations of who God is.

Look to Jesus, the Author and perfecter of our faith. Receive today a fresh outpouring of His grace and love for you. Then respond in genuine worship of our Heavenly Father.

Friend, Friendship

Jesus, the Greatest Example of a True Friend

By Bible Verses, Blog

Making friends these days is as easy as clicking on “friend request” on your Facebook page, but is that the true measure of friendship?

For Christians, Jesus has many names in scripture, King of Kings, Lord of Lords, The Messiah, Son of God, Emmanuel, but one we sometimes forget is Friend. He is also our perfect example for friendship. If you were to list all the qualities of your best friend, Jesus has those qualities and more!

Jesus was loyal, brave, humble, honest, compassionate, protective, encouraging, dependable, faithful, kind, loving, forgiving and completely sacrificial (just to name a few!). In John’s gospel He said:

 “Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends. You are my friends if you do what I command you. No longer do I call you servants, for the servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all that I have heard from my Father I have made known to you.” John 15:12-15

Sometimes we take a list of qualities, like the one above and say we’d like to have more friends like that, but maybe we should switch our focus off what we get out of our friendships to what we put into them. 

He freely gave Himself.
He came to serve and not to be served.
He did not try to get anything out of man, but instead, He gave man His all!

“Have this attitude in yourselves which was also in Christ Jesus, who, although He existed in the form of God, did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied Himself, taking the form of a bond-servant, and being made in the likeness of men. Being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.”   – Philippians 2:5-8

When we show ourselves friendly, like Jesus’ perfect example to us, we are reflecting His love. By this everyone will know we are His disciples. (John 13:35)

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