1st grade Bibles


1897653_909626389051867_4223503321497007697_neach year we present our first graders with a new Bible. we have a special family brunch where we share the importance of God’s Word to families. (you can read more about that here.) we also give the children a small gift bag. it usually contains some sort of family faith discussion product and a bookmark. you would think the purchased family-talk product would be the biggest hit, and they are great, but this year the real fruit of Bible reading came from our simple bookmark.

the bookmark is not an expensive item, but this year we saw its eternal value like never before. the idea for this bookmark came from the thought that Screen Shot 2014-09-29 at 7.13.44 PM while we are presenting children with God’s Word it can be incredibly daunting to know just where to begin. so many books. so many verses. so many words. so we thought what if we give them a jumping off point? what if we help children with some suggestions for verses and passages to seek as they begin their Bible reading? so we asked all the ministerial staff and first grade teachers to share with us the scriptures/passages that have meant the most to them. that’s all. we typed them neatly on a bookmark, laminated them really thick, and challenged the kids to use them to begin to find verses to read.

this year there was an overwhelming response. kids were so proud of their Bibles. they wanted them with them as much asScreen Shot 2014-09-29 at 7.14.24 PM possible. we even heard a story of a child choosing to read God’s Word over playing games on an ipad.

here is what one father emailed in to say,
What a wonderful Sunday!  You gave a powerful (and challenging!) message on the importance of the Bible and each family’s role in it.  Kaleb was so excited after church that his Bible did not leave his side the rest of the day! I could go on and on about all the impressive things but I think the one that was most special to me was the bookmark.  That all those people took the time to share, y’all put it together so clearly, and that it gives us a starting point to read with him is just awesome. “

if you are like me you know that sometimes we make things too hard. we think money has to be spent, bells and whistles must blow, and mountains must move. we simply gave them a bookmark with a challenge to use it as a resource to read God’s Word. kids accepted the challenge, so in my mind and heart i believe there is a great potential for the moving of mountains and changed lives for eternity.

how do you encourage children to read’s God’s Word? i would love to hear your ideas.

in my years in ministry i have never been a part of a 1st grade Bible sunday.  today was my first. 🙂  i was so excited to continue in this important tradition of giving 1st graders their very own copy of God’s Word and challenging them to seek it out for His life-changing truths!  little did i know what joy it would bring me to hand out Bibles and watch those sweet little hands grip them with pride.  i thought to myself, do i hold as tightly to God’s Word each day?  am i as thrilled to pick up my very own BIble (of which i have many translations) as these children were to receive their first copy?  their fresh eyes and eager hearts were a sweet sight to my soul today.  so, i thought i would share some pictures of some of my favorite parts of the morning.

dr. fenton had the 1st graders hold their Bibles high as he shared with them that there is no other book like the one they are holding.
at our family celebration lunch, two middle schoolers (one boy and one girl) shared testimonies about how their first grade Bible helped God’s word become a part of their daily lives. they were amazing.
families spent time sharing and laughing using group publishing’s gabbit.
families prayed over and for their 1st grader!
of course we had pictures made with the pastor. look how proud this 1st grader is of his new Bible.
1st graders left with goody bags that included a gabbit, a seeds family worship cd (this includes songs made up of only scripture), and a special bookmark that has all the favorite scriptures of the ministers at dawson and their 1st grade teachers.
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