*Affiliate links included.
On day four, we considered the wise men in our Nativity set. They came the farthest, following one bright star, to find a King. As soon as they saw the child with His mother Mary—and before they did anything else—Matthew 2:11 says “they bowed down and worshiped him.”
How can we encourage worship in our homes throughout December and beyond? And to worship before we do anything else? On day 4 we promised a list of resources that could encourage family worship and potential gifts we could give to enhance our own spiritual journeys. Today, Mentoring Moments shares not “five gold rings,” but the following ideas for day five of our Twelve Days of Christmas series, Nativity Alive.
What pieces could be added to your home that would prompt you to think about the qualities of God, or of Jesus’ teaching? Imagine how a thought-provoking piece commissioned by a local artist and positioned in a significant place in your home might prompt you and your guests to pause and think. By commissioning an artist (believer or not), you are also acknowledging their God-given gifts. And when you give them a verse or concept to convey, the artist will be immersed in Scriptures that will be an added blessing.
A charm bracelet can be added to with significant Christian events: salvation, baptism, confirmation, marriage.
Cross Pearl Necklace
My personal favorite: Arnold Ytreeide has written a series of four exciting storybooks for families to read during Advent. Each book tells the tale of a character who will ultimately arrive at the manger. Jotham’s Journey: A Storybook for Advent is one of the books. In addition there is Bartholomew’s Passage: A Family Story for Advent, Tabitha’s Travels: A Family Story for Advent and Ishtar’s Odyssey: A Family Story for Advent. Each day you read just one chapter, but your family will beg for more.
The Adventure of Christmas: Helping Children Find Jesus in Our Holiday Traditions, by Lisa Whelchel.
Redeeming Love: A Novel by Francine Rivers (for Christian fiction fans).
Praying God’s Word Day by Day by Beth Moore.
The Power of a Praying® Wife by Stormie Omartian.
The Power of a Praying® Parent by Stormie Omartian.
What God Wants for Christmas An interactive Nativity with boxes to open.
Preparing My Heart for Advent, A Bible Study with Devotionals to prepare hearts for Advent and Christmas by Ann Marie Stewart.
CDs are a great Christmas present to give and to receive. Give yourself a new one for 2016 and you may begin a new tradition. I love Beth Moore’s praise and worship leader Travis Cottrell’s Cds because his traditional hymns are upbeat and his newer praise songs are sing-able with clear melodic lines. Peruse his site and find a new CD for 2016. Infuse your home with praise and worship!
A few links to songs of worship and praise:
You are Good by Travis Cottrell
Alive Forever Amen by Travis Cottrell
In the Sanctuary by Hope Baptist Celebration Church Choir
We Will Dance by Travis Cottrell
RightNow Media is the Netflix for Christian Bible Studies. Everything is divided by age groups and ministry. It is a treasure trove of quality teaching material for families to use. Accessible through computer, tablets, smart phones, and smart tvs, it can be set up on each family member’s favorite device.
Ideas for Worship in our Homes
* Decorate a Jesse Tree
* Sing a hymn at the dinner table.
* Dance to a jubilant praise song? David did it and God called him a man after His own heart.
* Adornaments: Family Life Today has some that are an investment, but another alternative is to go through the names of Jesus and have your children create decorations of each: Bread of Life, Lamb of God, etc.
What would happen if the first thing we did was to worship? There are lots of good New Year’s Resolutions, but perhaps this one goal might be one of the most exciting opportunities to help us face the challenges in the next year. O Come Let Us Adore Him all year long!
About Ann Stewart
Ann just won the Christy Award for Best Debut Novel of 2017 with Stars in the Grass, originated AMG’s Preparing My Heart series, and writes “Ann’s Lovin’ Ewe” for The Country Register. When she's not writing, she's waving her arms directing musicals, teaching middle schoolers, or watching UVA Basketball, This is Us, or Madam Secretary. In her free time she hangs out with her husband, raising two lovely daughters and a whole flock of fuzzy sheep on Skye Moor Farm, in Virginia--where unscripted drama provides plenty of entertaining material.
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