Friday, March 30, 2012

An Amazing Recipe for an Amazing Story!

The following  recipe was taken word for word from my wife's blog

 Even though our family does this every year, the visual impact and reinforcement of the Easter story always hits home with every single one of us!

Read the whole recipe before beginning...
and you have to do together Saturday night before Easter Sunday. Or a different day before Easter, sort of missing the point if you do it on Easter Sunday

Resurrection Cookies
Preheat oven to 300 degrees

Ingredients:                     You need:
1 cup whole pecans             Mixing bowl
3 egg whites                           Wooden spoon
1 cup sugar                             Bible
1 tsp. vinegar                        Zipper baggy
1 pinch of salt                       Wax paper
                                                    Cookie sheet

Place pecans in the baggy and let the children beat them with the wooden spoon to break into small pieces.
Explain that after Jesus was arrested, He was beaten by the Roman soldiers.
For younger children you may want to that the Roman soldiers were mean to him.
  • Read - John 19:1-3

Let child smell the vinegar. Put 1 tsp. into mixing bowl.
Explain that when Jesus was thirsty on the cross, He was given vinegar to drink.
  • Read - John 19:28-30

Add egg whites to the vinegar.
Eggs represent life. Explain that Jesus gave His life for our life.
  • Read - John 10:10-11

Sprinkle a little salt into each child's hand let them taste it then brush the rest into the bowl.
Explain that represents the salty tears shed by Jesus followers, and the bitterness of our own sin...
  • Read - Luke 23:27

So far the ingredients are not very appetizing :)
Add 1 cup sugar.
Explain that the sweetest part of this story is that Jesus died because He loves us.
He wants us to know and belong to Him.
  • Read - Psalm 34:8 and John 3:16

Beat with mixer on high speed for 11-15 minutes until stiff peaks are formed.
Explain that the color white represents the purity in God's eyes of those whose sins have been cleansed by Jesus.
  • Read - Isaiah 1:18 and John 3:1-3

Fold in broken nuts.
Drop by tsp. onto waxed paper-covered cookie sheet.
Explain that each mound represents the rocky tomb where Jesus body was laid. 
  • Read - Matt. 27:65-66

Put cookies sheet in the oven.
Close door and turn oven OFF.
Give each child a piece of tape and seal the door.
Explain that Jesus tomb was sealed.
  • Read - Matt. 27:65-66

Go to bed !

Jesus followers were in despair when the tomb was sealed.
Explain that they may feel sad to leave the cookies in the oven overnight.
  • Read - John 16:20 and 22

On Resurrection Morning open the oven and give everyone a cookie !
Notice the cracked surface and take a bite.
The cookies are hollow !

On the first Resurrection Day Jesus followers were amazed to find the tomb open and empty.
  • Read - Matt. 28:1-9

He Has Risen! Hallelujah! ! ! ! !

Enjoy!  I hope your Easter is full of great family traditions and maybe some new ones too!

On the journey with you,

Pastor Beau

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

SPLINK for Week of March 25th

March 25-31
The Only Way

Items Needed: copy or construction paper and pencils

Ask kids to draw a map. (Pick a familiar starting place and an ending destination: house to library, school to home, house to church, etc.) Assign each one a different starting point and destination.

Why was it easy to draw the map? (Knew the way, been that way many times, etc.)

Read John 14:6–the new Bible verse elementary students began learning this week.

Jesus said, "I am the way."  His purpose was to make a way for us to have our sins forgiven and go to Heaven. He knew the way; He came from Heaven and went back to Heaven.

Say the verse several times playing echo. One person is the leader and says a phrase of the verse while the others echo what they've just said.

Tell Someone The Good News!
Item Needed: an invitation to church (perhaps to a special Easter event or service)

Jesus knew His purpose. He always did His Father's will. He came to the earth to die and give His life so we could have our sins taken away. What good news!!! To whom can we tell this good news?

Ask each family member to think of a friend or someone who might need to know the way to Heaven. Think of a statement to say as you hand the tract or invitation to the person. (Would you read this and tell me what you think? Would you like to come to church with me on Easter? Would you like to hear some good news?)

Say a prayer for the person giving and for the person receiving the tract.

Keeping Warm Under Water
Items Needed: rubber glove
Large bowl or sink full of very cold water
Some warm water in a cup
Towel to mop up any spills

Do a simple experiment to understand the purpose of a dolphin's blubber (to help keep its body warm in cold water).

Ask your child to put his bare hand in the water. (Then dry off his hand)

Now fill the glove with warm water and tell your child to put his hand in it. (Some water will probably spill out so hold it over the bowl or sink.) Keeping his fingers pointing down tell him to put his hand back in the cold water (with the water filled glove on).

How does it feel? (This is a little how the dolphin's blubber keeps it warm.)

God designed the dolphin's body with a layer of fat, or blubber under their skin to help them stay warm in the very cold water. Scientists have also discovered that blubber helps the dolphin to swim. God was a very wise designer who made everything for a purpose.

On the journey with you,

Pastor Beau

Friday, March 23, 2012

Important Lessons From Vinyl Records...

It's no secret that I love music... I have a collection of vinyl records (kids, records are like giant, black CDs... ask your parents :) that has steadily grown since my college days to somewhere in the neighborhood of 3500...

I know, right?

Believe me, in the beginning I heard it from my wife... a lot.  But after 13 years I think she's resigned to the
fact that this is who I am and music is a big part of me.  And even though my hobby takes over half our living room she loves me enough to be OK with that...

Whenever someone comes over to our house they are immediately bombarded with what I like to call my little "reintroduction to retro".

Here, it's easier for me to show you in pictures...

And yes... those are more LP's on the back wall.  By the way, thank you Ikea for creating shelves perfect for holding records! No more cinder blocks and plywood :)

Where Around Town Is This?

Not only is it Friday... it's Fun Friday!  So why not get out and enjoy Redding with your family!

Today I'm starting a new, semi-regular series called Where Around Town Is This: a family scavenger hunt.

Here are the rules:

  • I will periodically post a picture taken somewhere within the Redding city limits.
  • The picture will always be of a place that is easily accessible and will never cost money to gain access.
  • When you discover the place in question, take a picture of your family next to it and send it to me.
  • The first family to send me a picture of themselves and the location will get their picture posted here for the world to see!
  • Have fun and happy hunting!

Here's the first picture... Where around town is this?

Good luck!

I'm looking forward to your pictures!

On the journey with you,

Pastor Beau

Monday, March 19, 2012

SPLINKs for March 18th - March 24th

March 18-24

The Best Leader to Follow

Play “Follow the Leader.”
Take turns being the leader.
Why is it important to follow the leader? (So you will know what to do)
What might happen if you closed your eyes while playing the
game?(You might get hurt or lost)
Jesus is a great leader.
When Jesus told His disciples to let their nets down into the water, what did they do? (They obeyed)
What happened? (They caught A LOT of fish–Luke 5:1-11)
Why is it important for us to obey what God has told us in the Bible?(We will be happier, we will be blessed, we will please God, etc.)
Rules Rule!

At the dinner table or while driving, ask kids about rules:
What is the worst rule you can think of?
Are rules good or bad?
What might happen if there were NO rules?
Why do we have rules?
Think of the rule you most dislike; why don't you like it? Is there a reason it should be obeyed?
Rules are for our good. They help us know the right thing to do. Obeying the rules can protect us and help us get along with others.
Make a short list of family rules and post them on the fridge. Knowing what is expected makes it easier to obey.
Peter Rabbit

If you have young children, read or tell them The Tale of Peter Rabbit(by Beatrix Potter) and ask them some questions.

Once upon a time there were four little Rabbits, and their names were: Flopsy, Mopsy, Cottontail, and Peter.
They lived with their Mother in a sandbank, underneath the root of a very big fir tree.
"Now, my dears," said old Mrs. Rabbit one morning, "you may go into the fields or down the lane, but don't go into Mr. McGregor's garden–your Father had an accident there. He was put in a pie by Mrs. McGregor."
"Now run along, and don't get into mischief. I am going out."
Then old Mrs. Rabbit took a basket and her umbrella and went to the baker's. She bought a loaf of brown bread and five currant buns.
Flopsy, Mopsy, and Cottontail, who were good little bunnies, went down the lane to gather blackberries.
But Peter, who was very naughty, ran straight away to Mr. McGregor's garden and squeezed under the gate!
First he ate some lettuces and some French beans, and then he ate some radishes.
And then, feeling rather sick, he went to look for some parsley.
But round the end of a cucumber frame, whom should he meet but Mr. McGregor!
Mr. McGregor was on his hands and knees planting young cabbages, but he jumped up and ran after Peter, waving a rake and calling out, "Stop thief!"
Peter was most dreadfully frightened; he rushed all over the garden, for he had forgotten the way back to the gate.
He lost one of his shoes among the cabbages, and the other shoe amongst the potatoes.
After losing them, he ran on four legs and went faster, so I think he might have got away altogether if he had not unfortunately run into a gooseberry net, and got caught by the large buttons on his jacket. It was a blue jacket with brass buttons, quite new.
Peter gave himself up for lost, and shed big tears; but his sobs were overheard by some friendly sparrows, who flew to him in great excitement, and implored him to exert himself.
Mr. McGregor came up with a sieve, which he intended to pop upon the top of Peter, but Peter wriggled out just in time, leaving his jacket behind him.
And rushed into the tool shed, and jumped into a can. It would have been a beautiful thing to hide in, if it had not had so much water in it.
Mr. McGregor was quite sure that Peter was somewhere in the tool shed, perhaps hidden underneath a flowerpot. He began to turn them over carefully, looking under each.
Presently Peter sneezed, "Kertyschoo!" Mr. McGregor was after him in no time, and tried to put his foot on Peter, who jumped out of a window, upsetting three plants. The window was too small for Mr. McGregor, and he was tired of running after Peter. He went back to his work.
Peter sat down to rest. He was out of breath and trembling with fright, and he had not the least idea which way to go. Also he was very damp from sitting in that can.
After a time he began to wander about, going lippity . . . lippity . . . not very fast, and looking all around.
He found a door in a wall, but it was locked, and there was no room for a fat little rabbit to squeeze underneath.
An old mouse was running in and out over the stone doorstep, carrying peas and beans to her family in the wood. Peter asked her the way to the gate, but she had such a large pea in her mouth she could not answer. She only shook her head at him. Peter began to cry.
Then he tried to find his way straight across the garden, but he became more and more puzzled. Presently, he came to a pond where Mr. McGregor filled his water cans. A white cat was staring at some goldfish; she sat very, very still, but now and then the tip of her tail twitched as if it were alive. Peter thought it best to go away without speaking to her; he had heard about cats from his cousin, little Benjamin Bunny.
He went back towards the tool shed, but suddenly, quite close to him, he heard the noise of a hoe–scr-r-ritch, scratch, scratch, scritch. Peter scuttered underneath the bushes. But presently, as nothing happened, he came out, and climbed upon a wheelbarrow, and peeped over. The first thing he saw was Mr. McGregor hoeing onions. His back was turned towards Peter, and beyond him was the gate!
Peter got down very quietly off the wheelbarrow, and started running as fast as he could go, along a straight walk behind some black currant bushes.
Mr. McGregor caught sight of him at the corner, but Peter did not care. He slipped underneath the gate, and was safe at last in the wood outside the garden.
Mr. McGregor hung up the little jacket and the shoes for a scarecrow to frighten the blackbirds.
Peter never stopped running or looked behind him till he got home to the big fir tree.
He was so tired that he flopped down upon the nice soft sand on the floor of the rabbit-hole, and shut his eyes. His mother was busy cooking. She wondered what he had done with his clothes. It was the second little jacket and pair of shoes that Peter had lost in a fortnight!
I am sorry to say that Peter was not very well during the evening.
His mother put him to bed, and made some chamomile tea; she gave a dose of it to Peter!
"One tablespoonful to be taken at bedtime."
But Flopsy, Mopsy, and Cottontail had bread and milk and blackberries, for supper.
Who was obedient in the story? (Flopsy, Mopsy, and Cottontail)
Who was disobedient? (Peter)
How did he disobey? (He went to the garden when his mother told him not to go)
Why is it good to obey your mother? (She wants what is best for you, she wants to protect you, she will help you do what is right, etc.)
If you want to listen to a reading of it and see pictures, go to:

On the journey with you,

Pastor Beau

Friday, March 16, 2012

Fun Friday + Rhett and Link = Awesome

Most of you have heard of VeggieTales... those lovable cucumber and tomato purveyors of God's Word.  But I'd be willing to bet that you've never heard of What's In The Bible?...  If you haven't... check it out!

It was watching What's In The Bible that I discovered The Bently

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Cutting the Cord...

Two years ago we got rid of something that was slowly driving a wedge in the middle of our family.  It was making our daughter think she wasn't pretty enough, it was making our son violent, and it was making my wife and I distant, non communicative people living in the same house.

Every day it would suck the energy out of us and show us new, shiny things we should spend our money on.  It was talking to us all day, making us listen.  We listened so much that we weren't talking to each other any more.  It was slowly ripping us apart and we were letting it.

To make things worse, this thing was in our house by our choice.  In fact, we were paying a lot of money for it each month to stay in our house.

So, it had to go.  We kicked it to the curb and haven't looked back.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

SPLINK for the Week of March 11th

Tug of War

Items Needed: rope or towel (for tug of war)
Masking tape
Mark a point on the floor or ground. Line up two family members (about the same size) on either end of the rope.  Tell them to start pulling when you say go.
Do you think God and the devil are in a battle?
Who do you think will win? Do you think the devil is as strong as God?
God is all-powerful; the devil is not. There is NO doubt that GOD will win! Even though the devil is stronger than we are, he is NOT stronger than God.
Choose the smallest member of the family and put the rest of the family on the

Friday, March 9, 2012

How could I have missed this?

So there I was, drying my hands with one of those crazy blow dryer thingys, all the while thinking why they don't just hang up a pair of pants instead because that's what we all end up using anyway... when I discovered something that in all my hand-drying years have never known...

This may be the single, most important discovery I have made in at least 16 months... 
Something so amazing it has the potential to be life altering, world shattering, yes, maybe even world-peace attaining...

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

You mean we're THERE already?

This Saturday my daughter and I are going to our church's 7th Annual Father Daughter Feast.  This event is a great time for dads and daughters to eat spaghetti, laugh with each other, run in The Amazing Chase, and get their pictures taken.

Now, even though I'm the children's pastor, I have absolutely no part in preparing the feast or designing the activities.  This is by design... because for that particular night, I am not Pastor Beau... I'm Madison's dad and she gets my undivided attention for a full night.

With 6 years of Father Daughter Feasts behind us Madison and I have 6 different pictures, each depicting a special moment suspended in time.  As I was working today I began looking at some of these pictures and was struck by a reality that I didn't particularly like.

My little girl isn't so little anymore.

Next year Madison will be a 6th grader... I mean really, a 6th grader!  Am I really old enough to have a 6th grader for a daughter?!  For crying out loud, I still feel like a 6th grader... at least in my head :)

Now, if I sat down and really dwelt on the fact that Madison is getting older, if I allowed my mind to play

Monday, March 5, 2012

SPLINK for the Week of March 4th

1. Surprise Guest
Kids started a new series about the miracles of Jesus. Long before Jesus came to earth, God promised to send One who would deliver them from sin; He them many clues so they would recognize Him.
Invite a special guest (family, friend or neighbor) to drop by your house at a specific time in the evening. Tell the kids at breakfast about the special guest, but don't reveal his or her identity.  Give them clues about the person throughout the day, starting with general clues and ending with more specific ones. (It's a person. It's a man. He has two eyes. He wears glasses. He is tall. He has gray hair. He is kind. He will play a game with you; choose your clues to fit the person.)
When the person arrives, ask:
Did the clues help you figure out our guest's identity? Why or why not? (They helped us to recognize him when we saw him)
How did God give clues to the people BEFORE He sent Jesus to the earth? (The prophets gave many facts or clues

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Something to do on Saturday...

Most of you know that I LOVE making paper models... I'm fascinated that something 2 dimensional can become 3 dimensional with a bit of folding and glue :)

During my constant quest of finding great stuff to make I stumbled across My Little House - an awesome website created by a children's book illustrator that is full of wonderful paper toys that are not only cute, but very easy to make as well.

Since Easter is coming up soon I thought I'd highlight a very cool set of toys that when put together tell the story of Jesus' resurrection!

How cool is that?

PLUS... and here's the best part... IT'S FREE!  All you have to do is print, cut, fold, and glue!

This is a wonderful way to spend a Saturday with your kids...

For best (and longer lasting) results use cardstock instead of regular paper.  If you want to go all out, I use Canon Matte Photo Paper... but you can certainly use Walmart brand cardstock for similar results :)

For younger kids the rocks, trees, and tomb are the easiest to cut out and fold.

Parents, I'd suggest that you put the people together as some kids may find certain parts a bit fiddly.

Hint:  After you've built the set, have your children retell the story of Jesus' resurrection in their own words using your new Easter diorama.

And as always, if you make anything with your kids please send me a picture of your creations!

Don't forget to check out all of the other great things to make from this site as well!

On the journey with you,

Pastor Beau

Friday, March 2, 2012

Not too young to teach or too old to learn...

My son is 6.  I'm a bit older than 6.  And yet, what I learned from him yesterday was huge.

Wilson got three cavities filled, yesterday.  Not one, or two... but three.  The days leading up to his appointment he had heard dentist horror stories from his sister (thanks Madison), the "good luck and hope you live" wishes from his friends at school, and the "you're going to be just fine" from his mother and hypocritically from me.

A little back story on me is in order, I suppose.  I had a few really bad experiences at the dentist when I was younger... and those experiences and residual fears that resulted have followed me into my adulthood.  Even though I tell myself that I'm a big boy now, that the dentist isn't out to hurt me, and that all he really wants to do is help me... I still get sweaty palms just thinking about it... Sheesh, my grandfather was even a dentist.  He was loved by all and even though I never got to be a patient of his, he wasn't a scary grandpa so I'm pretty sure he wasn't a scary dentist either.  And yet dentists still scare me.

Deep down I know that dentists are good people :)  And there comes a point in every father's life when he has to put childish fears aside in order to not influence his child's impression of a given experience.  To say that another way... I don't want Wilson (or Madison for that matter) to be scared of somebody who is clearly God's chosen way to help fix our teeth, even though I am...

The night before, during our nightly prayer time I asked Wilson if he was nervous about his visit the next morning.  He told me that he was and then I asked him if he wanted to pray about it.  As I prayed for courage and peace for Wilson I couldn't help but pray the same for myself.

In the morning on the way to the dentist I asked Wilson if he was still nervous.  He looked at me and said. "Why would I be, dad?  We prayed right?"

Yes, we did pray.

And just like that, he walked right in to that dentist's office and up on the table.  He wasn't scared in the least... because we had prayed for courage and peace... because he knew that God would grant him courage and peace if we asked for it... because Wilson believed whole heartily that God would do what He says.

Lord, help me have faith like my son.  Thank you that through our children we can become better followers of you.  Sometimes I forget that you are all powerful... help me to have faith like a child once again.

What can you learn from your children this week?

On the journey with you,

Pastor Beau

More Comedy... it must be Friday!

John Branyan is another great, clean comedian.

I especially identify with the clip below :)

My wife found this last clip of John and I think it's hilarious!  Where DID all of our words go?  (Just in case you were wondering... that's a fake cigarette :)

Have a great (and funny) Friday... I'll see you on Sunday!

On the journey with you,

Pastor Beau