We are in our last month of summer. Yes, it has been quite warm in my neck of the woods – an unusually warm summer this year. Perhaps like me, you are thinking that staying inside where it’s air conditioned is a good idea, but if you can, get outside at least a little. It’s well worth the effort to go and enjoy the big, beautiful world that God made.
When it’s hot in the summer, I love to go out in the early mornings and in the evenings when it starts to get cooler. I can actually sit out on my deck and see planes lining up to land at the airport on warm summer evenings. It’s so beautiful to sit out there and look up into the night sky. The sky is so vast and amazing. God did make a beautiful world. It restores my peace to sit for a few moments and enjoy the beauty of the night, the stars, the moon, the trees silhouetted against the night sky. It makes me realize how amazing God is.
Listening is also another good activity to do when you are outside in the summer. Listen to the sounds of the birds, the bees buzzing, neighbors talking, children laughing and playing. Yes, God did make a beautiful world with beautiful people. Stop for a moment, explore nature even if it’s just in your backyard. Stop and let the sights and sounds of nature refresh your soul; then give thanks. Thank God for all that He made.
Summer will soon be over, school will be starting, vacations will be finished and the holidays with all their busyness will loom just around the corner – so in these last dog days of summer, pause and enjoy. Get outside! Look around, smell the flowers, listen and thank God for His big beautiful world.
PARENT OR GRANDPARENT PRAYER:
Thank you for the beautiful world that you created and thank you for summer days to enjoy nature. I love walking and meeting neighbors. I love seeing the various flowers, trees and vegetable gardens in my neighborhood. I also love watching the stars come out at night, playing games with my grandkids in the grass and tending my own garden. You made so many beautiful things when you created the world. You created the world with us in mind. You made the things we need for food, water to drink, cook with and bathe in. You made beautiful things for us to enjoy and share with others. You made people/families so that we don’t have to go through life alone. You created people to love and serve you and because you love us. Teach me, Lord to slow down and enjoy the BIG, beautiful world around me. Show me ways I can care for the world and honor you by doing so. I want my kids to know how to care for the world and other people too. Teach us to give and share freely because you gave us so much. Thank you God! Amen
ENJOYING GOD’S WORLD
Simple ideas for enjoying God’s World –
- Get outside. Take a walk, garden, play a game with your kids in the yard, just get outside.
- Go to a park or walk a community trail. What wildlife do you see? What natural flowers can you identify? Are there unusual birds on the trail? Thank God for them.
- Go to the zoo or aquarium. God made some very interesting animals and sea creatures.
- Drive up to the mountains or down to the sea. Look out on the vastness of all you see. God is amazing!
CARING FOR GOD’S WORLD
You have most likely heard most of these suggestions before, but it bears repeating. I know I need to remind myself frequently to care for God’s world. How can we care for the world? Show us ways, O Lord, that we can care for the world you created.
- Take care of the things that you have – the things God has given you because everything ultimately comes from God. Use the things you have well and share with others when you can.
- Take a trash bag with you when out walking and pick up any trash that you see on the way. It’s just one way of cleaning up your part of the world even if can’t clean up the whole world.
- Recycle and reuse whenever you can. We have become a throw-away society in many ways. It’s easier and sometimes less expensive to throw something away instead of recycle it or fix it. When you can though, recycle or donate to someone else who can use it. Another way to recycle is to repurpose something. A dish drainer could become a desk organizer. An old shoe box sprayed with gold paint becomes a treasure box for your child or to use at church as a prize box. An old ice-cube tray – yes there are still a few around, is a great place for earrings and an old cookie sheet can be spray-painted to become a magnet board to use at church or in your preschooler classroom providing it’s metal and not aluminum. Anyway, you get the point. Be creative and repurpose.
- Compost vegetable peelings, grass, and plant item can usually be composted or art least put into your yard waste bin for pick up. This is one I need to be a little more diligent with myself. I’m going to keep trying.
- Take care of your pets or wildlife in your backyard. When we care for living things, we are caring for the world God created.
- Care for the people in your world by giving and sharing with them. Yes, one of God’s greatest creations is people. Don’t forget to walk a little slower and really care for others. Caring may mean a listening ear or just sharing a smile with someone. It’s showing genuine empathy by giving time and attention so others and that includes our families.
- Take reusable bags with you when shopping. You can now bag your own groceries and use your own bags if you go through the self check-out. Again, this is one that I need to work on more.
- Conserve water.
I’m sure there are many other ways of caring for the world God created. Come up with your own ideas and share them with others. I would love to hear some of your ideas too.
Things To Do With Your Child This Week
KNOW: Everything belongs to God because He made it.
TALK ABOUT: The World God made.
ASK: Who mad the world? God made the world.
AND DO: Be thankful for all that God made and care for the world and other people.
SHARE A STORY: God Made Everything – Genesis 1
God made day and God made night. – (Stretch and pretend to rest.)
He made the moon and stars so bright. – (Reach up high in the sky.)
He made the sky, the clouds floating by, – (Wave arms gently.)
And He made the sea, oh me, oh my! – (Make waves with hands. look surprised.)
He made the land for plants to grow, – (Push tips of fingers through the fingers of your other hand as though a plant is growing.)
Trees, and plants grow high and low. – (Reach high and bend down low.)
He made fish, birds and animals of every size and shape. – (Hands together like a fish. Flap arms like a bird.)
At the zoo, I like to watch the monkeys and the great big ape. – (Say, “Ooh!”)
Then when God was finished with all of His creating,
He set aside a day for resting and celebrating. – (Say, “Yeah God!”)
Yes, God created everything, but this one thing I know, – (Put up 1 finger.)
God made you special because He loves you so. – (Give self a hug.)
“Thank you God for all you made. Everything belongs to you. Thank you for making and loving people. God, you made enough for us to love and share with others. I love you.”
Who made the world? God made the world.
What can you do? I can be thankful for all God made. I can love others because God loves me.
MEMORIZE: 1 Tim. 6:18 ERV – (Hold hands as though holding a book.)
Be happy, – (Show big smile)To give – (Extend hands outwards)And ready – (Wave hands outward like a music director.)To share – (Pretend to give something to someone.)GLOBE TOSS: (What is needed: Inflatable beach ball type globe)Tell the kids that this is a picture of the world God created. Toss the globe back and forth as kids say each word of the verse.PRAYER:Dear God,Thank you for all that you made. I’m glad you made the world and I’m glad you made me. Help me take good care of the world that you created and to love others because I know everything belongs to you. You gave us a beautiful world to live in and take care of. Amen
FUN IDEA FOR THIS WEEK:
* Thank God for what He has made and especially for the things He has given you. Say with your child, “Thank you God for __.” Ask God how you can use what He has given you to help others.