What Is God Making?

PHOTO CAPTION: You are never too young to create something delicious!

Happy 2023! I hope this year brings growth and many blessings your way.

The beginning of a new year is a good time to reflect on the old year, the good, the bad and everything in between. Chances are you have had some of both. It’s a good time to think about what changes you want to make, what goals you have for yourself and also to celebrate those things that you are proud of. The beginning of a new year offers us a fresh start.

I love fresh starts and new beginnings. Though change can be difficult, a fresh start has a way of giving us energy and also adding new beauty to our lives. It gives opportunities to let go of past mistakes and failures to embrace new goals and adventures. It like a breath of fresh wind blowing through our lives giving us the grace to move forward, to create, renew and freshen that which needs changing or perhaps just add a fresh coat of paint. New beginnings encourage us to dream again and reach high to accomplish those dreams. Whether we accomplish every dream or not, still a new beginning brings energy into our lives and our relationships.

When I think of new beginnings, I also like to think of the very beginning when God created the world. I believe that God believes in beginnings and fresh starts. He is constantly doing new things. There are many questions we could ponder about creation such as, “Why was the earth formless and empty in the beginning?” It was dark and had no purpose or life in the beginning, yet there was God and God created.

God took that formless, empty, dark void and He created much like a painter takes a blank canvas and makes a beautiful picture, so God created a beautiful, vibrant world teeming with life. God is a master Creator. He doesn’t need a blank canvas or anything else, He delights in creating beauty out of emptiness. He loves to created light in the darkness, but that’s not the end of it. God also made us in His image. That means we also were made to create. No, we are not God and we can’t create something out of nothing like He can, but we can create. We can create cookies by mixing together flour, sugar, eggs and other ingredients desired. Some of us love creating beautiful music and like the painter I mentioned earlier, some of us may create masterpieces, write stories, find creative solutions to a problem or find a cure for a disease. The ideas and dreams that we have come from our God-given creativity.

Where are you at today? Do you feel creative or bogged down? Are you excited to begin a new year or are you fearful of what lies ahead? Do you feel like a formless blob (especially after consuming all those Christmas calories) or perhaps you feel dark, saddened by the circumstances that you faced in 2022? Have you lost hope that anything can every change? Let me remind and encourage you that God is still creating. He didn’t stop creating when the earth was formed. He is still ready and wiling to step into your emptiness and bring life. He wants to bring light to your darkness and I believe He wants to give you creative answers to your questions and problems. He wants to give you a fresh start and fresh energy for your journey.

Let’s get started. Let’s make those resolutions, set those goals, paint those masterpieces or maybe just your walls. Be creative! Dare to dream and ask God, “What are you creating in my life? How can you make a masterpiece out of my mess, God?” Let go of the past year and grab hold of the new because I know that God is making something; something beautiful out of you.

PARENT PRAYER:
Dear God,
I welcome you today into this new year. I don’t know what this year will bring, but I know that you do and I know that you are still creating beauty in our lives. I believe that you give us new beginnings every year. New beginnings give us a chance to start over, to let go of our failures and start fresh. I don’t have to go back to the old things, I can press forward and with your help, I know you will show me how to make masterpieces of my messes, how to take the dark splotches on the canvas of my life and make them into something beautiful. Show me how to embrace this year with grace and courage. I need courage to move forward with confidence and grace to forgive myself and others. Lord, show me how I can give grace and encouragement to my kids, grandkids and others. I want them to know that it’s never too late to start again when they mess up. I’m so thankful that you made us creative and give us creative ways of starting fresh. Teach us to never give up as we adventure through life. Gives eyes to see the beauty of your creation. Thank you God, that you are still in the business of creating beauty in our lives and yes, even in our dark places, I know you are at work. Thank you that you are a creative God. Thank you that you haven’t stopped doing new things. Amen

ENCOURAGING CREATIVITY IN CHILDREN

  • I love creating with children. They are naturally creative and imaginative which is what creativity is all about. Creativity is simply harnessing your imagination and doing something with it. So how do we encourage children in their creative pursuits? Here’s a few ideas to get you started –
  • Have art supplies, building materials and a variety of random materials such as paper towel tubes, fuzzy balls, foam shapes, large buttons, seashells, cardboard boxes available for their imaginative use.
  • Bake something with them.
    • Instead of giving a child a coloring page to scribble on, give him a blank piece of paper so he is free to make his own imaginative picture.
      • Ask questions and problem solve with your kids. Creativity is also coming up with a different solutionto a problem.
      • ART WITH KIDS
      • Remember with young children, the art is more about the experience than the finished project. The more paint, more stickers or more glue, the better through a child’s eyes.
      • Allow ample time for your child to complete her masterpiece. If your time is limited, then let your child know up front that she only has a few minutes to finish the project or let her come back to finish the project later.
      • If you are concerned about a messy art project, confine it to a certain area such as an art table covered with a plastic tablecloth or outside on the deck when it’s nice enough. Keep aprons or old oversized T-shirts available for kids to wear when creating. This limits stains on their clothing.
      • Encourage the kids to do as much as they can for themselves.
      • Messes can be cleaned up and your little artist can help.  It’s helpful to have wipes, a sponge or two and a few old towels on hand for clean-up time.
        • Display the finished art work so your child or the kids in your classroom can be proud of their work and share it with others.

          KID’S SECTION
          STORY: In The Beginning – Genesis 1
          God is amazing! In the very beginning, God created the world just by speaking. Can you imagine creating something just by speaking? God did! When I want to make cookies, I first have to make sure that I have all the ingredients like flour, sugar and eggs, but God just spoke and everything He said was made. What are some things that God created? Yes, He made kitties and puppies, He made moms and dads and flowers. Do you know what God created on days one and two? Let’s read and find out.

          God created the heavens and the earth, but the earth didn’t have any shape. (Show wad of play dough.) It was empty and dark, but God said, “Let there be light.” Guess what? (Turn on a flashlight.) Just like that light appeared! God said the light was good. He did a good job when He made light. Then God divided the light from the dark. God made light on the very first day.

          On day two, God said, “Let there be a space between the water in the sky and the water on the earth.” God called the space sky. Did you know that there is water in the air or sky? There is. It is mist, fog, steam and clouds. Water from the sky falls to the earth as rain, snow or hail. On earth, God made lakes, rivers, oceans and springs of water. God did a good job when He created sky and water.
          On Day 1, God created dark and light; and on Day 2, He created sky and water.

          Later God also made someone very special. Do you know who? Yes, He made you! He did a very good job when He created you. I’m glad God created dark and light, sky and water. I’m very glad God created you. Did you know God was thinking about you when He made the world? He was. He knew you would need light and dark, sky and water. He was thinking about you before you were even born! You are very, very special to Him.

          PRAYER:
          Dear God,
          Thank you for all you created. Thank you for making dark and light, sky and water Thank you for thinking of me when you created the world. You are amazing. You can do anything. Thank you for making me too. I love you. Amen

          MEMORIZE: Genesis 1:1 NIV – (Hold hands like holding a book.)
          In the beginning God – (Reach up.)
          Created – (Pound fists together.)
          The heavens – (Raise hands and wave arms.)
          And the earth – (Make w’s with fingers and roll hands around each other.)
        • KNOW: God made the world. God made me. He did a good job!
        • TALK ABOUT: Creation.
        • ASK: Who made the world? Who made you?
        • AND DO… I can thank God for all He made.
      • FUN IDEAS FOR THIS WEEK
        • Explore God’s world. Even though it’s wintertime, you can still get outside for a few   minutes. Enjoy the season.
        • Thank God for your wonderfully made child.

          VERSE SONG: To the tune of “Frere Jacque”
          In the beginning,
          In the beginning,
          God created,
          God created,
          The heavens and the earth,
          The heavens and the earth,
          Genesis 1:1 
          Genesis 1:1

           

Author: faithstepsandmore

I am a mom of three, grandmother of eight and have worked with young children for over thirty years. I currently write curriculum, speak for women's groups, do chapel for a daycare center and help with teacher/volunteer training at churches. I love what I do. There is nothing better than helping kids take those first steps of faith in a God who loves them more than they can imagine.

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