Author: Eon De Bruin

How To Teach Your Child To Read The Bible

In this post I want to share with you an easy way to teach your kids how they can read the Bible correctly. It may take some time and effort in the beginning to start off, but you will see at the end of the article the benefits if you push through. So read through to end. So how does this work? The first thing you need to do as a parent, is to make a list of 52 Bible stories.  Stories such as Noah’s ark, David and Goliath, etc.  Once you have your list of 52 Bible stories, then you can start following these daily steps: Day 1 (Monday) Take the first Bible story from your list and read the story with your child.  Depending on the age of your child, we might even suggest you read the story from a children’s Bible so that they can understand it much easier.  You can always go back to the Bible when they are a bit older. After you have read the Bible story with your child, ask them 1 or 2 easy questions about the story.  For example, on what day did the Lord created all the animals?  Easy questions. Day 2 (Tuesday) Read the same Bible story again with your child.  In fact, you will spend 1 week on each Bible story, meaning with 52 stories, you will work through the Bible in one year. After you have read the Bible, allow your kids to ask questions about what they have read.  Sometimes they may not have any questions, but sometime they will.  When they do ask a question, I want you to help guide your kid to find the answer.  You can maybe do a search on the internet, or allow your child to go ask their Sunday School teacher, etc. The important thing is for them to know that they can ask questions if they don’t know something, and where or how they can find answers to these questions.  Feel free to give them answers yourself every now and then.  Let them know they can also come to you if they have questions. Day 3 (Wednesday) On day 3 you can either read the story with your child again, or depending on their age, let them read it by themselves. The task this time is to ask them what they have learned from the story.  They may even repeat the answer they got on day 2, but that is okay.  You want to create a certain habit with your child.  You want to create a habit in them whereby they think about what they have read. Day 4 (Thursday) On day 4 you read the Bible story with your child again, or allow them to read it for themselves, depending on their age. Once they have read the story again, then explain to them the true meaning of the story, or maybe what the story means to you.  It is important to make the link of what they have learned (day 3) and the true meaning (day 4), because it will make your child feel as if they achieved something.  They are learning something new and that they are on the right track. Accomplishments are one of the biggest motivators. Day 5 (Friday) Read the Bible story with your child again, or allow them to read it for themselves, depending on their age. After they have read the Bible story (for the 5th and final time), ask your child the following question:  How can you implement what you have learned to your life? What is important here is for them to come up with the answer, and not you as a parent.  Again, you want to create a habit on how they should read the Bible.  Giving them the answers won’t help them. Conclusion So by following these daily steps, what exactly have your child learned? They have read the same story 5 times, and every time they learned something new. And that is how the Word of God works. Every time we read it, God teaches us something new. They learned that they can ask questions if they don’t understand something. They have also learned where and how to find answers to their questions. They would have learned to read the Bible in a way that speaks to them. To read a Bible story (or a passage) and see what it means to them. They would have learned the true meaning of the story. They would have learned how to implement what they have read to everyday life. So as a parent, I want you to ask yourself these questions: Imagine if you follow these daily steps 52 times (for a whole year) and impress these habits into your child.  How would they read the Bible in week 52? Imagine your child’s understanding of the Bible by the time they reach 18, when you started impressing these Bible reading habits on them from an early age? I hope this guide will help you.  Feel free to share your ideas on how you help your kirs read the Bible in the comments below.

Why your kids should have a hobby

I remember as an 11 year old how I enjoyed creating my own comic books. In fact, one of my best friends was also an artist and we would spend holidays and weekends together working on our own comic books. I loved the Disney/Looney Toons type of comics, while he was more into the Marvel/DC Comics genre. Nevertheless, we had great times just drawing, chatting, laughing, and sharing our storyline plots with each other. These were great memories. I am sharing this with you because there are great benefits in having a hobby you enjoy, and to encourage your kids to have a hobby could be one of the best investments you can make in them. Allow me to share with you just some of the reasons why it is beneficial for kids to practice a hobby, and why you should encourage it. Patience One of the greatest attributes that a hobby teaches you is to have patience, and I am sure you would agree with me that there are a lot of patience lacking in todays world. People simply can’t wait anymore. Have you ever heard the phrase, “I want the report on my desk yesterday“? It is so common in the workplace. Just sit in traffic for a few minutes and see how everyone, including yourself, become impatient. Everything needs to happen fast. We have fast food restaurants. And when that wasn’t fast enough, we created drive-thru’s to get our food even faster. We live in an impatient world. But having patience is actually an instruction from the Lord. It is one of the fruits of the Spirit that we read about in Galatians 5:22-23. But Colossians 3:12 also says this. Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. Colossians3:12 So why will a hobby help your child develop patience? Because as with my comic books I created, it took me months to complete. There weren’t any shortcuts for me to take. If I wanted to finish my comic book, I had to spend the time to complete it. Looking back I created around 8 comic books; and even though the artwork was terrible I am still very proud because I know the hard work and time it took me to create them. There is a great sense of accomplishment when you practice patience. Self-discipline Believe it or not, creating comic books really taught me self-discipline. It help me understand that in order to complete a comic book, there are a few stages I have to go through; like coming up with a concept and storyline, planning the layout, writing the story, drawing eveything in pencil first and then go over the artwork with pen. I also learned that if I want to finish my comic book at a certain date (like before the holidays end), I would have to create a certain amount of pages per day, and I would have to stick to that target if I would like to achieve my goal. My hobby taught me the processes I need to follow to complete a task, and how to setup a deadline and to achieve it. I realised that if I stick to the goals and processes, I would have a comic book by the end of the school holidays. If I don’t, then I won’t have a comic book. My hobby tought me all of this, and it was self-discipline that helped me achieve my goals every time. Stress reduction A lot of people describe their hobbies as their ‘happy place‘, and I can understand why. For me there was something magical when I could go into my room, close the door and draw for hours. My comic books took my mind away from school, bullies, exams, cleaning my room, and all the struggles an 11-year old may have. It aloud me to forget about everything negative around me and to focus on something I love and enjoy – making comic books. I realised today why this was so important, because it gave me balance in my life. I wasn’t overwhelmed by all the negative things in my life, I made time to fill it with the good, positive things too. To not have a ‘happy place‘ you can go to can create a massive inbalance in your life and you will soon find no joy. You will develop a negative attitude and be a “glass half empty” type of person. You can’t do anything with all the negative things happening in your life, but you can create a balance for yourself that will help you live a more happy and fulfilled life. Develop critical thinking skills To practice a hobby allows you to think critically, creatively and analytically. In creating a comic book, I had to think about a lot of things; from storyline, character development and plot, down to the darkness of my pencil and the thickness of my pen. There are a lot of things to think about and it all plays a massive part in the success of my comic book. Growing up in the ‘pre-social media’ and internet age, I couldn’t watch Youtube videos, do a Google search or take online courses to learn comic book creation. I had to learn everything myself. Let that sink in for a moment. I was 11 years old, and I tought myself everything about comic book creation. I studied other comic books. I see how they lay out their pages. When to have a closeup on a character, and when they need to be far. I compared my work to proffesionals and see where can I improve. I made mistakes and learned from them. Hobbies creates a hunger to learn. It inspires you to improve and get better. But more important than anything else – it forces you to think. Protection against other bad influences This is actually pretty obvious. If your child have something they love to do, like a hobby, it keeps them away from any other activities that could be bad for them. Like the old saying, ‘it keeps them off the streets.’ I watched an interview with Cheslin Kolbe on YouTube. Cheslin shot to worldwide fame as a Springboks rugby player after scoring a memorable try in the 2019 Rugby World Cup final. In this interview Cheslin talks about his upbringing and how he grew up in an enviroment full of gangsters. Some of his best childhood friends ended up being gangsters, and some of them aren’t even alive today because of their choices. But rugby was something Cheslin could focus on. His dad was a rugby player and he fell in love with the sport from a young age. Even though rugby is a sport and not a hobby, the example I want to illustrate is the same. Cheslin had something he enjoyed that he would much rather spend time on than being out on the streets. His love for rugby protected him from hanging out with the wrong crowds and being badly influenced, because he chose to spend more time playing rugby. And the same can be said with hobbies. I spent my weekends and holidays drawing comic books. It was my passion and I enjoyed it. And that kept me away from doing other things or hang out with the wrong crowds. I had something to do in my free time that I love and enjoy, and if I were to choose between doing mischief with other kids and drawing comics, I would choose drawing comics everytime. Prepare them for future success I just used Chesliln Kolbe as an example of someone who enjoyed something as a child, and then later on make it their carreer and being successful in it. But again, I would like to use myself as an example. I created little insignificant comic books as a child. Not a lot of people read it beside my family. But it wasn’t a waste of my time, because guess what I am doing today? I am creating animation shows for a Christian streaming platform called Tween Xstream. This childhood hobby turned into my carreer and I am ministering to young kids with this talent as well. Thinking back, those weekends and holidays that I spent drawing my comic books, God prepared me for something bigger for when I am older. Cheslin Kolbe is a born-again Christian and he has a huge testimony of how God healed his ancle in the World Cup. He didn’t play in the semi-finals and nearly missed out on the finals. But God knew the person Cheslin will become and through the guidance of his parents, he worked on his rugby skills as a child. Today he is seen as one of the biggest rugby stars of our time. Your child’s hobby could be God preparing them for greater things. So encourage them. Support them. Motivate them. Give them the time and space to practice a hobby that they love and enjoy. Whether it is playing rugby, making comic books, building small models of ships and tanks, or making clothes for her Barbie doll. Because here is what I have learned as an 11 year old kid making comic books. I learned patience, self-discipline, competence, problem solving and critical thinking. I had a more balanced and happy childhood and was protected from bad influences. And I developed my skills and creativity that help me reach thousands of kids today. This is what drawing comic books taught me. Not my parents, the school or my church. It was my hobby.

Teaching Your Kids How To Pray

The other day I saw a parent ask the question, “how can I teach my kids to pray?” I am so glad this parent asked this question because prayer is probably the single most powerful tool you can teach your kids. So in this post I want to share a few tips on how you can teach your kids to pray. So let us dive right in: 1. What is prayer? Before you can teach your kids to pray, they first need to know what prayer is. Obvious right? I found these two desriptions on the internet that truly sums up what prayer is: Prayer is spiritual communication between man and God, a two-way relationship in which man should not only talk to God but also listen. Billy Graham Prayer in the Hebrew Bible is an evolving means of interacting with God, most frequently through a spontaneous, individual, unorganized form of petitioning and/or thanking. In these instances, such as with Isaac, Moses, Samuel, and Job, the act of praying is a method of changing a situation for the better. I think these two descriptions really describe what prayer is. It is a two-way relationship between man and God that can change your situation for the better. 2. When do you pray? So your children now know what prayer is; the next question is when should they pray? Some of us, like me, were raised to pray certain times of the day, like before you go to bed, or right before a meal. This became like second nature to me. But is that the only time to pray? Imagine a married couple that only talk to each other before they go to bed or before every meal. That won’t be a healthy marriage. It is the same with prayer. Even though praying before you go to bed and before every meal is a great starting point, it is exactly that… A starting point. Kids should understand that God is ready to listen to them at any time. At school, with their friends, when they wake up, and even in the shower (don’t judge me. hehe) 3. What to pray about? So your kids know what prayer is and when to pray. But what should they pray about? Well the quick answer is always ‘anything that is on their heart.’ But even though that is true, I don’t find it to be entirely true. We need to be righteous for our prayers to be effective: The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective. James 5:16 The disciples askes Jesus how to pray and He gave them a simple guide what we today know as the Lord’s Prayer. So let us look at the Lord’s Prayer quickly. Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name.Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven.Give us this day our daily bread.And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors.And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil:For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen. Matthew 6:9-13 Reading this prayer we can take the following from it: Glorify and praise God Seek His will Ask Him for the things you need not for the things you want, but also share your hearts desires with him (Psalms 37:4) Ask for forgiveness of your sins Ask Him to guide and protect you And I would also add one more to this list – thanksgiving (Philippians 4:6) 4. Show them And here lies the most important part for you as a parent. Show them what prayer is. Kids learn better and faster if they see someone else do it. Isn’t it how kids learn math at school? They see the teacher to the sums in front of them on the black board. Kids learn better if they see it first. So it is important for your kids to see you pray. To see when you pray. And to see what you are praying for. Show them what prayer is by praying with them every day. You can easily ask them to pray a few lines once you are done. You will be amazed how they will improve over time and how a ‘one sentenced prayer’ will turn into a two, three, ten, twenty sentenced prayer over time. Pray with them. That is how they will learn best. BEST SELLING PRODUCTS

Controling your Child’s Screentime

In some families screentime can be a huge problem. Mobile phones and tablets are a huge part of kids’ lives in today’s society. But is there a way that you as a parent can get control of your children’s screentime habits?