Looking Back to 2011, and Forward to 2012

As we say good bye to 2011 and usher in 2012 there are great cultural traditions that we can take advantage of in our families. The first is the idea of looking back over the past year. You will see endless TV shows, top ten lists, and countdowns that look at the highlights from the past year. What were some of your families best moments of 2011? The second idea is New Year’s resolutions. Think about ways you can create some family resolutions for the new year.

Websites for More Ideas

Top 10 New Year’s Resolutions for Families

How to Create a Memory Collage

New Year’s Resolutions for Family Fitness and Health

New Year’s Resolutions for Families

What Sort of New Year’s Resolution Should a Christian Make?

A New Year’s Poem for Christians

Instead of making a New Year’s resolution
Consider committing to a biblical solution
Your promises are easily broken
Empty words, though earnestly spoken
But God’s Word transforms the soul
By His Holy Spirit making you whole
As you spend time alone with Him
He will change you from within

~ Mary Fairchild

 
Families in Faith can come to your inbox as a Free email resource. We will send an email every week offering tips, suggestions, training, and encouragement to parents as they work to pass the faith on to their children.
Please share this with others. You can also encourage others to sign up for Families in Faith online by having them text the word “families” to 22828 or go to www.poplc.org/familiesinfaith
 
Created by Dr. Joel Dietrich
Minister to Families and Children
Prince of Peace Lutheran Church
8304 Old Keene Mill Rd – Springfield, VA 22152

©2011, all rights reserved

Christmas Traditions that Point to Jesus (12-22-11)

As we Christians we are to be in the world, but not of the world… but not out of it either! Don’t run away from the so-called non Christian aspects of the Christmas season. Most of them can be used to point to Jesus.

 

The 12 Days of Christmas

This was a secret code used by the Catholics in England from 1558 until 1829 where they were not allowed to legally practice their faith.  So to preserve their teaching and doctrine and teach them to their children, someone wrote this carol as a catechism song.  It has a hidden meaning known only to the member of their church.  Each element has a code word for a religious reality which the children could then remember.

1 – A partridge in a pear tree = Jesus Christ
2 – Two turtle doves = Old and New Testaments
3 – Three french hens = Faith, Hope, and Love
4 – Four Calling Birds = 4 Gospels: Matthew, Mark, Luke and John
5 – Five golden rings = The Torah, or book of Law – first 5 books of the Old Testament
6 – Six Geese a Laying = 6 days of creation
7 – Seven swans a swimming = 7 gifts of the Holy Spirit: Prophesy, Serving, Teaching,
Exhortation, Contribution, Leadership, and Mercy
8 – Eight maids a milking = 8 beatitudes
9 – Nine ladies dancing = 9 fruits of the Holy Spirit: Love, Joy, Peace Patience, Kindness,
Goodness, Faithfulness, Gentleness, and Self-control
10 – Ten lords a leaping = The 10 Commandments
11 – Eleven pipers piping = The 11 faithful disciples
12 – Twelve Drummers Drumming = 12 points of belief of the Apostles’ Creed

Do your kids know the song “The 12 Days of Christmas”? Its a fun song to sing as a family – everyone always belts out the “5 Golden Rings” part. Try teaching the meaning to the 12 days too – If your kids knew all 12 days – wow!

Web Links for Extra Training

History and Meaning of Christmas Lights
The History of the Candy Cane
The History and Meaning of Mistletoe
The History and Spirituality of Christmas

Families in Faith can come to you as a Free email resource. We will send an email every week offering tips, suggestions, training, and encouragement to parents as they work to pass the faith on to their children.

Please share this site with others. You can also encourage others to sign up for Families in Faith online by having them text the word “families” to 22828 or go to www.poplc.org/familiesinfaith

Created by Dr. Joel Dietrich

Minister to Families and Children
Prince of Peace Lutheran Church
8304 Old Keene Mill Rd – Springfield, VA 22152
©2011, all rights reserved

Teaching the Nativity (12-15-2011)

Getting the true Nativity story straight from the Bible.
Then looking into the major characters for a little background information.

Web sites about the Nativity

The Truth about the Nativity

The Shepherds and Sheep

A complete accurate look at the Nativity through a Question and Answer format

Family Traditions

Many family traditions grow out of the Advent and Christmas season. From advent wreaths, to decorating the Christmas tree. From holiday lights to advent calendars.

Develop the tradition of telling the Biblical account of the birth of Jesus. This will help get through the misconceptions and additions in the story of the birth of Jesus. On Christmas eve, gather the family around the Christmas tree, and have someone read the 3 Bible passages that tell us the story. From Matthew chapter 1, and Luke chapter 2 you get the story of Mary and Joseph and the Shepherds. In Matthew chapter 2 you get the story of the Magi.

You can do this is a quiet reading, with the lights low, and perhaps the candles from the advent wreath all lit. Or you can make a production out of it, having your kids dress up like the various characters and you be the narrator.

Families in Faith can come to your inbox as a Free email resource. We will send an email every week offering tips, suggestions, training, and encouragement to parents as they work to pass the faith on to their children.

Please share this email with others. You can also encourage others to sign up for Families in Faith online by having them text the word “families” to 22828 or go to www.poplc.org/familiesinfaith

Created by Dr. Joel Dietrich

Minister to Families and Children
Prince of Peace Lutheran Church
8304 Old Keene Mill Rd – Springfield, VA 22152
©2011. all rights reserved

Advent Calendars and Wreaths (12-08-2011)

Advent is a season of preparation and expectation as we look forward to the Birth of Jesus and His eminent return.  Advent Calendars and Advent Wreaths are wonderful tools for families to use as they prepare their hearts, homes, and lives for Jesus.  Help your children keep the focus on Jesus as we count down to Christmas!

Web Sites – Advent Calendars and Advent Wreaths

The Meaning of the Advent Wreath

Web site with lots of Advent ideas from history to recipes to family activities. Its a few years old, so not all of the links work anymore – but it could help get the juices flowing for creative ideas.

Web site from Microsoft Office that teaches you how to create your own Advent Calendar.

Advent Wreath - Guide to Meaning

Just for Fun

The Nativity story set to "Bohemian Rhapsody"

A video where the Nativity Story is told by puppets singing to Queen’s “Bohemian Rhapsody”; they call it the “Bethlehemian Rhapsody.”

Online Advent Calendar Museum

Pictures and descriptions of Advent Calendars over the 150 year history.

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Families in Faith can come to your inbox as a Free email resource. We will send an email every week offering tips, suggestions, training, and encouragement to parents as they work to pass the faith on to their children.

Please share this email with others. You can also encourage others to sign up for Families in Faith online by having them text the word “families” to 22828 or go to www.poplc.org/familiesinfaith

Created by Dr. Joel Dietrich

Minister to Families and Children
Prince of Peace Lutheran Church
8304 Old Keene Mill Rd – Springfield, VA 22152
©2011. all rights reserved
fam-in-faith_12-1-2011-rely_on_God

How Do You Rely on God? (12-1-2011)

How you ever thought about the ways in which you rely on God? Sometimes it is easier to rely on God when life is difficult or full of challenges. When life is good and we are comfortable and satisfied it is easy to forget all that God does for us. It is at this time when Moses warns us to be careful not to forget God.

Spend some time this week thinking about how your family relies on God.

Things to check out –

Video Intro to Anna Voskamp’s book “One Thousand Gifts”
One Thousand Gifts - video intro
 
Anna Voskamp author and blogger who created a book and concept called “One Thousand Gifts“; teaching and encouragement for families to discover something new each day that they are thankful to God for.
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Get the “One Thousand Gifts” iPhone app
and start recording your “gifts” today.
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Families in Faith can come to your inbox as a Free email resource. We will send an email every week offering tips, suggestions, training, and encouragement to parents as they work to pass the faith on to their children.
Please share this email with others. You can also encourage others to sign up for Families in Faith online by having them text the word “families” to 22828 or go to www.poplc.org/familiesinfaith

Created by Dr. Joel Dietrich

Minister to Families and Children
Prince of Peace Lutheran Church
8304 Old Keene Mill Rd – Springfield, VA 22152
©2011. all rights reserved