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Whew! It’s the weekend! I don’t know about you, but this week has definitely got me looking forward to summer! I’m ready for the pause. The months of April and May seem to stretch and pull our family in different directions. I’m looking forward to the chance to breathe and to spend some intentional time connecting as a family.
While I’m looking forward to the next few months, I’ve also spent some time reflecting on the past school year. I’ve watched my boys grow and mature over the past several months. I’ve watched their friendships go through hills and valleys. I’ve watched how the changes in this season of life affected them. I’ve picked up on a few key areas where I’d like to be intentional in shepherding each of them.
During this season, I’m excited for the lazy mornings that allow us to spend a little more time gathered around the table. I’m excited for the conversations that are able to flow and happen naturally… and not interrupted every few minutes with a reminder to pack a lunch, find their shoes, grab their backpacks.
Each summer, we spend our breakfast time in something that we call “Breakfast with the Bible.” During the school year, we tend to find shorter devotionals or stories that are read before bed. I enjoy those devotionals, and we’ve found a rhythm that has really been great this year. But during the summer, we get to dig into a more detailed study. My oldest especially will get to see the difference between a devotional and a full study. We’ll get to spend more time with our Bibles open and pouring over passages. I can’t wait.
I’m excited today to be able to share with you our final selections for this summer’s Breakfast with the Bible. I always get asked what exactly we DO during this time. It’s nothing super fancy, but here it is!
As I’m preparing breakfast, I turn on some sort of worship music. Last year, we listened to a lot of Cedarmont Kids. So many of these songs take me back to my childhood and the boys love the modern sound. The music is a signal that I’m ready for them to come to the kitchen.
This year, because each boy will have his own study, we’ll do a bit of flip-flopping. After we’re all at the table, I’ll start with Buddy Boy’s story. For his particular Bible time, we’ll be using the Love & Kindness Bible Stories board book. There are nine different devotions/stories, so we’ll focus on one each week. We’ll read the story daily and then practice the memory verse. I’m also planning to incorporate some object lessons and crafts into his time. Other days, he’ll simply color from a Bible stories coloring book while Little Man and I work through his study.
Little Man and I will be working through a second Discover 4 Yourself study. The first one we did, Lord, Teach me to Pray, was excellent. I’m excited to work through this next one now that he’s a little older. We’ll be doing Boy, Have I Got Problems. I’ve noticed this year that self-control seems to be an “area of refinement” for him. As I previewed this study, I found some excellent examples that directly related to situations I’ve seen him struggle with this year. This particular study lines up well with the kindness stories in Buddy Boy’s devotional. Because Little Man is older, I’ll be able to get him started, and then just sit alongside him as he works through the activities. With both boys, I look forward to the conversations we’ll be able to have about this topic.
As for me, my Bible time will come a little later (or earlier, depending on the day). I generally love the quiet and stillness of the early morning hours. However, my youngest gets up pretty early, so he tends to wake up as soon as he hears movement. This is real life. I’m in a season that those perfect early mornings may not happen that often. I’ll just embrace it.
I digress. For my own time with the Lord, I’ve really been hearing Him ask me to just “dwell” in Him. I have a stack of studies that I’ve started, but can’t seem to finish. For this summer, I have said no to all of those studies. I’ve given myself grace for not finishing them, and I know I’ll return to them when the season is right. For the month of June, the Scripture-writing plan will be over the word “abide.” I’ve been drawn to this idea of just resting and remaining in Him. I’ll be doing this in two ways … well, hopefully more, but two intentional and “listable” ways. I’ll be reading Sacred Rhythms as one of my non-fiction books in June (more on my nerdy bookish ways in another post). It’s about practicing the spiritual disciplines of silence and solitude. My dad gave it to me a few years ago, but I have yet to read it. God must have known that I’d need it in a season like this.
As I work through the Scripture-writing plan, I will be using the Inspire Journaling Bible. I simply love the idea of creative journaling as a method of dwelling in His Word. I am definitely NOT an artist, so this will be an exercise in relinquishing my need to have Pinterest-worthy journals. This will also be an exercise in listening for His voice. I’ve stepped away from my women’s groups and the pre-written studies for this season as I fully pause and let Him steer me where He needs me to go. I’m considering it a sort of spiritual retreat. This is new for me. I’m generally a very Type A, love my outlines and color-coding, let me go hunt for all the correct answers kind of girl. I feel very certain that God has asked me to stop and listen for a change.
So there you have it! I cannot wait to see how God grows our faith as we step into this new season … of life and of weather! What will you be studying this summer?
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