chubby-bunny parent ministry

Bayside Parent Ministry Mission Statement:

Bayside Parent Ministry exists to come alongside and equip parents in their God-ordained role as their child’s minister to teach their children to LOVE GOD, LIVE TRUTH, and SERVE OTHERS.  We commit to pray for families and provide two main tools in order to help equip parents:  yearly Rite of Passage Events (R.O.P.E.) based upon principles from God’s Word which may be found below by selecting the appropriate grade tab, as well as weekly online parent training.  Aside from Christ Himself, children are some of the greatest gifts parents receive. Let’s honor The Lord as we point our children to Him.

 


How to Have a Meaningful Quiet Time

“Oh how love I Thy law! it is my meditation all the day.” Psalm 119:97

Christianity is not a legal relationship, it is a love relationship. Ten thousand “don’ts” will never make you one iota more like the Lord Jesus Christ. It is Jesus Himself Who makes you like Him. But you need to spend time with Him. I want to give you five factors for spending some quiet time with Him each day.

The Proper Period

You must find the right time. Your quiet time should last at least half an hour. But some time is better than no time, so if you can’t start at thirty minutes, begin with ten. It should be your very best time. Don’t give the Lord your leftovers. And don’t try to find time – make time, and make it a priority. Also find time early in the day. Psalm 5:3 says, “… in the morning will I direct my prayer unto Thee, and will look up.” You don’t take the trip and then read the map, do you? Spend time alone with God to begin your day.

The Proper Preparation

A quiet time is fellowship with a holy God. There are a few things you can do to be prepared for this time. First, be physically alert. Find a time when the cobwebs are out of your mind and you can think clearly. Second, be mentally aware. Be focused, and know He’s there. Emotion doesn’t really have all that much to do with it. And third, be morally pure and clean. Some people don’t have a quiet time because they feel uncomfortable looking God in the face with sin in their lives.

The Proper Place

Find a place where you can focus. Jesus said enter into your closet and pray (see Matthew 6:6). That simply means find a place of isolation where you can shut the door on the world and open the windows to heaven. Jesus sought out places where He could be alone, and so should you.

The Proper Provisions

In order to have an effective quiet time, you need the right tools. Here are some tools I use:

  • a readable Bible – Invest in one with plenty of room to jot notes in the margins.
  • a prayer journal – Expect God to give you something and write it down. Also use it to record things you’re praying about.
  • a notepad – Write down your daily assignments.

The Proper Procedure

Finally, may I recommend some procedures to follow in your quiet time?

Get still and quiet. The Bible says in Psalm 46:10, “Be still, and know that I am God.” Focus your mind on Him. Calm down, relax, and recognize His presence. Take a deep breath and focus your thoughts on the Lord.

Get into the Word of God. It’s better to start by reading the Bible than it is to start in prayer. It is more important for you to hear from God, even than for God to hear from you. God already knows all about you, but you need to know a lot more about Him.

Read the Bible for quality and not quantity. It’s good to have a goal to read the Bible through in a year, or a similar goal; but that’s not the purpose of your quiet time. Also, devotional books are wonderful. But again, this is not the place for them. This is the time when you simply read the Bible with an open mind.

Meditate. As you focus on the Word of God and meditate, let it permeate you. Ask:

  • Is there a command to obey?
  • Is there a promise to claim?
  • Is there a sin to avoid?
  • Is there a lesson to learn?
  • Is there a new truth to carry with me?

Record what God has given you. Write down what God says to you and what He tells you to do. It doesn’t have to be flowery. You’re not writing it for publication or to impress other people.

Now you’re ready to pray. When you pray, pour out your soul. Be natural and honest with God. Tell Him how you feel. Pray out loud. It keeps your mind on track and enables you to stay focused.

Begin to share out of your quiet time. God did not make us to be reservoirs; He made us to be conduits. Tell others what is God is showing you.

Finally, obey what God tells you. Your spiritual train is running on two rails. One is revelation and the other is obedience. And if either rail stops, your train stops. Learn to obey the Word of God.

I pray these simple suggestions will help you have a daily quiet time in the presence of our loving, almighty, powerful God.

http://www.crosswalk.com/devotionals/how-to-have-a-meaningful-quiet-time-1338122.html

How to Pray – A Guide to Teaching Your kids

1.       What is prayer?

  • Basically, prayer is communication between you and God.             

                “Call to Me, and I will answer you, and I will tell you great and mighty things, which you do not know.”

Jeremiah 33:3 NAS

  • God’s telephone number: J-E-R 3-3-3

Just think of trying to cope with your problems if there were no way to communicate with God. Job, in the Bible is a perfect example of one who made it through tremendous trials because he had God. God was his strength!

2.       Why do people fail to pray?

a.       We often convince ourselves that we can make it without God.

 “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your way acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight.”         Proverbs 3:5-6

b.      We don’t know how.

3.       How to Pray

a.       Be real; be yourself!

 1.       You must be honest (genuine, open) with God.

“Who may stand before the Lord? Only those…who do not practice dishonesty and lying.”     

       Psalm 24:3b-4 TLB

2.       Come before God as a child.

 “The greatest in the Kingdom of heaven is the one who humbles himself and becomes like this child.

Matthew 18:4 TEV

3.       Talk to God as you would to a friend.

“Thus the Lord used to speak to Moses face to face, just as a man speaks to his friend.”

 Exodus 33:11a NAS

b.      Pray consistently.

“Pray at all times.” 1 Thessalonians 5:17 TEV

1.       Pray with persistence.

“Pray and never give up.” Luke 18:1b

c.       Pray believing.

“…all things for which you pray and ask, believe that you have received them, and they shall be granted you.”                    Mark 11:24 NAS

d.      Your prayers must be specific!

Pray generally – you’ll never know.

Pray specifically – you’ll see God at work.

1.       God sometimes says, ‘no’.

He even gave Paul a reason. (2 Corinthians 12:8-9)

2.       God sometimes says, ‘wait’.

It may be a trial period which He knows you need. He may not want you to settle for something good, but to wait for something that is best!

3.       God sometimes says, ‘yes’.

Usually when you seek God, and you are praying according to His will, He will answer your prayer far beyond what you could ever dream.

e.      Pray with action.

A prayer can never take the place of action. Like love, it must be expressed in action and not merely words.

“Be ye doers of the word.” James 1:22a KJV

Example of how NOT to pray:

‘Dear God, please help John today. I know that he is far away from you, and he needs your help.’

Example of HOW to pray:

‘Dear God, I really hurt for John. I want your will for his life to be accomplished today. If there is any way that you can use me, I am available. Please make me sensitive to any doors that you might open to use me in his life today.’

f.        Practical suggestions for praying in public:

1. Nervousness I normal.

2. You will learn through experience.

3. Don’t pray around the world. A short prayer will often minister to more people.

4.       Elements of Prayer

 You can remember these by the acrostic, A-C-T-S.

 a.       Adoration is praising God for who He is. This can be done by reading Scriptures of praise of through music.

b.      Confession is agreeing with God about your sin. True confession always includes repentance, which is a change in your life. Confession without change is playing games with God, and you will be the loser. Confessions is so important because it brings about spiritual growth!

c.       Thanksgiving is thanking God for what He has done.

d.      Supplication means requests. These are the things that you ask God for.

There are two categories of supplication:

1.Petition is praying for our needs.

a.       We pray when we are in a crisis.

b.      We pray also for our daily needs.

2.Intercession is praying for others.

How To Have a Family Devotion Time

In an age of fractured families and hectic schedules, Christian families need to be deeply rooted in Christ and His Word.  Church and Sunday school are essential, but equally important, Christianity must be lived in the home; Christ must be the center of our lives.  Christian families through the ages have found joy, strength, and guidance through taking time daily to pray and read together from God’s Word.  We often call this time a “family devotion.”

HOW TO BEGIN

The first step toward effective family devotions is setting aside regular time. Many families have devotions after breakfast or supper. These times naturally bring the family together and can lead conveniently into a devotional time. Other families find just before bed time works well. But whatever time you choose, be sure that the whole family can be together on a regular basis. Consistency is important because it shows that time with God is a high priority.

WHAT TO INCLUDE

Devotions can include many activities such as music and Scripture memory,  but it is important to include at least these three:

  1. Reading from God’s Word
  2. Discussion and Teaching
  3. Prayer

READING FROM GOD’S WORD

The Bible is an exciting book! It is filled with true stories of God’s heroes, with down-to-earth advice, with spiritual insight, and with the plan of salvation. It is the primary way by which God communicates to us today. It is essential, therefore, that we feed upon God’s Word regularly.

There are many ways to approach daily Bible reading with your family. Here are a few:

Read a chapter or a portion each day. This is a simple plan used by many families. You can read consecutively through a book, taking a passage each day. Older children can take turns reading too. Then, each person can share what most impressed them about the passage. This can help each person see how God’s Word applies to him personally.

Bible reading plans. A similar approach is to follow a program designed to guide your family through the Bible in one or more years. (Net.Bible.org has a number of personalized reading plans) One advantage of this is that your family will be exposed to the whole Bible in a systematic way.

Devotional Guides. A variety of excellent devotional guides can be found fromBible.org

Family Bible Study Programs. Families with older children may want to try studying the Bible in depth together. Each family member can read and reflect on the daily portion beforehand. After re-reading the passage together, discussion can follow. Many good Bible study books and articles can be found on Bible.org.

Younger Children. Children under six or seven probably won’t be able to read the Bible themselves. But they can still learn much from Bible reading. Even the youngest child begins to see that God’s Word in important. Explaining the passage in simple language, avoiding abstract ideas, will help keep the interest of younger children. And many a parent has been amazed by the insights their little ones come up with!

Childhood is also an excellent time to memorize Bible verses, when minds are quick and eager to learn. And it is an excellent time to begin sharing the basic truths that are the foundation of salvation.

DISCUSSION AND TEACHING

Discussion and teaching about the Bible passage for the day is an integral part of Bible reading as mentioned already. A few additional suggestions may be helpful:

First, try to keep the discussion clear and concise. Often basic questions will help your family understand the passage: “What happened?” “What is being taught?” “How does this apply to your life?”

Second, it is important to maintain a good balance between leadership and participation. The whole family should be encouraged to participate actively and naturally. But the one leading family devotions should correct any erroneous observations, leading in a loving way towards the truth.

Third, it is important to be sensitive to the family’s special needs. Some questions may seem “off the subject” but are good indicators of issues the children are facing. We can help them discover needs and circumstance.

With positive, prayerful leadership, a time of discussion and teaching can provide an opportunity to grow together in the Lord.

PRAYER

God’s communications comes to us through His Word, but is a one way conversation unless we lift up our hearts to him in prayer. Our loving heavenly Father wants us to talk to Him. He delights in our praise, thanks and petitions, just like any loving Father does. Thus the family prayer time should include:

Worship and Praise – When we think of God’s goodness and greatness, our hearts should well up in worship and praise – for the beauty of His creation, for the gift of life, for a loving family, for the fellowship of Christians and above all for salvation through Christ’s atoning death. There is no end to the list. Even the youngest child can add his own worship and praise. Perhaps each person could share at least one thing to praise God for each day.

Confession – As we lift up our hearts to the Lord, we should also recognize our own unworthiness and sinfulness. God has forgiven our sins once and for all. But in order to walk in fellowship with Him (and with others) we need to confess that we continue to fall short of God’s perfect standard. As we confess in prayer, we are drawn closer to God and to each other, growing in grace and in the knowledge of God’s forgiveness.

In making confession part of our prayer time, it may be helpful for the leader to suggest:” Let’s remember in prayer those things that we need to confess to the Lord and each other, asking God’s forgiveness both for things we have done and left undone.

Personal Request and Intercession – Like a loving Father, God desires to know our deepest concerns just as much as to receive our praise. We can open our hearts to Him, knowing that He hears and answers our prayers, and that He will work all things together for good (Romans 8:28). And as we share needs with each others, we will be drawn closer together as a family.

Many families find it helpful to keep a prayer list or notebook. This might include special needs of the family, of neighbors, of missionaries, or government leaders. It can also provide a record of answers to prayers. Whatever the answer we know that God hears and responds according to his will.

Some families may wish to include other things such as singing hymns or chorus, or acting out a Bible story, or doing a craft. These can be meaningful; but there is no need to begin with something elaborate. The important thing is to daily read and discuss God’s Word and prayer together.

It is often said that “the family that prayers together, stays together” and the statistics show this is true. But this is not all. As we seek God daily, we renew our relationships with each other and with God. He talks with us; and we talk with Him. He receives our praise, confession and petitions; and we know the joy of His presence.

If you have not already, won’t you make family devotions part of your home, so that as a family you may “grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. To Him be the glory both now and forever. Amen” (2nd Peter 3:18)

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Rites Of Passage Material By Grade Level Below: