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Is Jesus the center of your Christmas - Issue 129
November 27, 2009
Hi there! ....

This week As the season for our formal studies come to a close for the year I have been thinking about the tension between content and skills based education. A contents based education is where we start off with all the facts and figures that a child needs to know – we can check it off our list as they learn their lessons. A skills based education is more about what the child can do, how they apply knowledge to everyday life. We need both and yet when we get focused on the facts and figures we tend to burn out – both ourselves and our children. Daniel came to the end of a free-time project he had been working on for many months. It didn’t really have any objectives – just to keep him occupied and yet when I look back at the skills he mastered during this time it is exciting. He learnt to use word processor (including the drawing tools and graphics), he now understands how to file his work on the computer and keep it organised, he learnt to send emails, he made badges, disguises, and cubbies, he was always writing something so his spelling and reading has improved too. So though he was sad coming to the end of this project I can look back with excitement and see that though he was spending his time in an imagination world he was learning. These skills that he mastered during this time will do him well when he turns his mind to formal studies.

Live life with your kids!



Is Jesus the center of your Christmas?

Keeping Jesus at the center of our Christmas celebrations is a phrase that keeps popping up around this time of the year – I’ve written a workshop style e-book with the same type of title. It is an important goal. But there is something that is more important – that we have Jesus as the center of our life all year round. If this becomes our focus now, and hasn’t been for the last 11 months our children will sense a phoniness, a religiosity and they will not connect with our heart at all. They may say good words, but their heart will really be planted in the gifts and the commercialism we so much want to stay away from.

If Jesus is going to be the reason for the season, the center of Christmas, Jesus needs to be the center of your life first. What does that mean?

  • It means that we need to recognise who He is – He is the son of God, the living word, since before the beginning of time.
  • It means that we accept His gift of forgiveness (Christmas is only the beginning of the story – Easter tells it all – He came to save us from our sins, to offer forgiveness)
  • It means that everything we do needs to reflect Him; that means that our life should look like Jesus’ life. This puts a new slant on WWJD – what would Jesus do? Good question – once you know go and do it!!
This is how we need to live our life all year through – not just now at Christmas time. We need to turn our minds, our hearts, and our actions towards Jesus.

Things I want to make sure my children understand this Christmas:

  • It is about Jesus – yes, He came to earth as a baby but the most important thing is what He did on the Cross. Christmas is the beginning of the redemption of man – our salvation from sin.
  • The greatest gift of all is the gift of forgiveness that Jesus offers us. Have we received that forgiveness? Do we offer forgiveness to others, do we ask for forgiveness from others?
  • A time to pause – though we need to remember Christ all year round we take this time to pause and be intentional about remembering what God has done, establishing and confirming habits that become a part of each person’s life for the years to come.

The world around us is seeing Christmas simply as a time to be with family and friends, to show love by gift giving. Some people are possibly taking the time to consider the poor but mostly it is a time of self indulgence and self focus. As Christians though we need to have a different focus; as followers of Christ we celebrate the Christ part.

How are you doing that in your family? It is easy to be swept up in the cultural celebration and at the end of it all say “I wish I had ….” Now is the time to sit, pray, reflect and consider what you want your family celebrations to look like and consider what you want to teach your children. If we are not intentional we will get swept along with the norm – and you may not want that!


Website Updates
There are no new updates this week though you may like to check out the pages on Family Traditions and Christmas in particular.

My Sitemap is a quick reference to all you will find on Lifestyle-Homeschool. I encourage you to have a browse around!

Bookshop
Restoring the Heart, Mind and Soul of Christmas - Are you intentional about your Christmas celebrations? A workshop style e-book to help you match your celebrations with your beliefs.

Heart Focus Parenting - A heart focused parent will keep their attention on their child's heart for God, instead of on external behaviours.


Live life with your Kids Blog
Do you read my blog? Live life with your Kids Blog is where I jot my thoughts throughout the week and share things happening in our family. You are welcome to visit!




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Until next week

Belinda Letchford
Living life with her kids in Australia!


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