Monthly Archives: April 2011

Easter activities with your children (part 2 of 2)

I know its after Easter…but I didn’t find out about these neat activities to do with kids for Easter until this last weekend!
This is reminiscent of the Christmas Adventure Box, but with a Resurrection twist

Get 1 dozen plastic eggs and label #1-12
Fill eggs with items and verses listed below
Open up for 12 days and praise God with the story of His Son!

1. (Bread) Matthew 26:26
While they were eating Jesus took a piece of bread,
gave a prayer of thanks, broke it, and gave it to His disciples.
“Take and eat it,” He said, “This is My body.”

2. (Coins) Matthew 26: 14-15
Then one of the twelve disciples, named Judas Iscariot, went to
the chief priests and asked, “What will you give me if I betray
Jesus to you?” They counted out thirty silver coins and gave
them to him.

3. (Purple cloth, representing a purple robe) Mark 15:17
They put a purple robe on Jesus. . .

4. (Thorns) Matthew 27:29
Then they made a crown out of thorny branches and placed it on
His head, and put a stick on His right hand; then they knelt
before Him and made fun of Him. “Long live the King, of the
Jews!” they said.

5. (Scourge-a small piece of rope or thick string) Mark 15:15
Pilate wanted to please the crowd, so he set Barabbas free for
them. Then he had Jesus whipped and handed Him over to be
crucified.
6. (Cross) John 19: 17-18a
He went out, carrying His cross, and came to “The Place of the
Skull,” as it is called. (In Hebrew it is called “Galgotha.”) There
they crucified Him.

7. (Nails) John 20:25b
Thomas said to them, “Unless I see the scars of the nails in His
hands and put my finger on those scars and my hand in His
side, I will not believe.”

8. (Sign) Luke 23:38
Above Him were written these words: THIS IS THE KING OF
THE JEWS.

9. (Sponge) Matthew 27:48
One of them ran up at once, took a sponge, soaked it in cheap
wine, put it on the end of a stick, and tried to make Him drink it.

10. (Spear) John 19:34
One of the soldiers plunged his spear into Jesus’ side, and at
once blood and water poured out.

11. (Rock) Matthew 27:59-60
Joseph took the body, wrapped it in a new linen sheet, and
placed it in his own new tomb, which he had just recently dug
out of solid rock. Then he rolled a large stone across the
entrance to the tomb and went away.

12. (Empty) Matthew 28:6
He is not here He has risen just as He said.

Easter activities with your children (part 1 of 2)

Easter cookies!
To be made the evening before Easter.

You need:

1 cup whole pecans
1 tsp. vinegar
3 egg whites
pinch salt
1 cup sugar
zipper baggie
wooden spoon
tape
A Bible

Preheat oven to 300 degrees. This is important! Don’t wait until you’re
half done with the recipe!

Place pecans in zipper baggie and let 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.
Read John 19:1-3.

Let each child smell the vinegar.
Put 1 tsp. vinegar 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 vinegar. Eggs represent life.
Explain that Jesus gave His life to give us life.
Read John 10:10-11.

Sprinkle a little salt into each child’s hand. Let them taste it and
brush the rest into the bowl. Explain that this 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 the story is that Jesus died
because He loves us. He wants us to know and belong to Him.
Read Ps. 34:8 and John 3:16.

Beat with a mixer on high speed for 12 to 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 Isa. 1:18 and John 3:1-3.

Fold in broken nuts. Drop by teaspoons onto wax paper covered cookie
sheet. Explain that each mound represents the rocky tomb where Jesus’ body was laid.
Read Matt. 27:57-60.

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

NOW GO TO BED!
Explain that they may feel sad to leave the cookies in the oven overnight. Jesus’ followers were in despair when the tomb was
sealed.
Read John 16:20 and 22.

On Easter morning, open the oven and give everyone a cookie. Notice the cracked surface and take a bite. The cookies are hollow! On the first
Easter, Jesus’ followers were amazed to find the tomb open and empty.
Read Matt. 28:1-9

Radical Experiment

While traveling to North Carolina last month Joel and I listened to the book, Radical, by David Platt.
The subtitle is: Taking back your faith from the American Dream.
It immediately changed our lives.
Our lives are continuing to be changed and we cannot NOT share this with all of you!

As we attempt to comprehend and move in obedience towards the convictions God has laid on our hearts through this book we want to share our journey.
As we make changes in our family and lives for Christ we will document how and what God is doing to pull ourselves from our lifestyle, thinking, living, routine, jobs, and even family towards His purpose which is greater than everything else (yes, even our family!).
I ask for your accountability that we act on our convictions.
I also ask for your willingness to take the time read (or listen to) this book.
It is well worth your time and effort.

Please respond with how God has changed your life through this book, or in other radical ways!

the culprit

Can you see the cat walking in the alley?
Can you see the stinky, long-haired, urine-spraying cat in the alley?
Well – he’s there, and he’s stinky, and long-haired and sprays urine all over our grill cover and front door.
Welcome to the Drapers!

I really need to just lure it over and cage him to ship him off to the local animal shelter
Or my mom will try to run over him with her car like she has not only offered to do, but actually attempted one day
Aren’t mom’s the greatest? You can count on them for anything!!!

Any cat pee smell removing tricks?!
Or cat peeing deterring suggestions?
Or cat removal secrets?!

guest blogger: Kim

This is a blog from one of my dearest friends, Kim.  She turns 27 today!!!

Kim and I still aren’t exactly sure how or when we became friends, but it was through mutual friends that neither of us are as close to as we are to each other – here, 8ish years later.
Kim and her husband Dave have been married 2 1/2 years, have a silly 6-toed cat, Mosie, and are expecting their first child, a son, in August.

I love Kim because of her always-ready ability to crack a one-liner and find the irony in any situation.  I am so grateful for her companionship, confidentiality, and challenge she’s never afraid to offer.  She is a woman after God’s own heart living in a marriage seeking His kingdom’s work that is inspiring to Joel and I.  She’s beautiful, confident, determined, joyful, and blessing to have as a friend!
I tend to be too sappy with these intros.
Did I mention she runs like a madwoman?  Still, at almost 5 months pregnant?!  Well, read on about it…

I love running. I love running in all forms – training runs, racing runs, running with friends, running by myself, long runs, short runs, fast runs, slow runs, runs that work out stress and emotion, runs that leave me really tired. Sometimes I have runs that don’t feel the best and sometimes I can get burned out from too much running and have to take a break. But when it all comes down to it, I LOVE running. I feel strong when I run and connected to my body. After runs I feel more put together, relaxed, and mentally stable. But getting started with running can be hard. Really hard! Here are a couple things I think are important to know to get you started (and keep you going!):
Run/walk: Starting running can be daunting… and difficult! You might not even be able to run one mile continually, and that’s okay. But it can also be discouraging, feeling like you’re barely running anything. Start by running and walking. It’ll give you time to recover from the running bouts, but will still get your body used to running in general. Try running for 3 minutes, walking for 1. As you can, increase how many minutes you’re running in between the walk breaks.

Start slow: Don’t look at your pace when you first start running – just run to run. A good pace is one where you can talk while you run. Not “talk a mile a minute/chatty Cathy”, but you should be able to hold a small conversation as you run. If you’re gasping for air every other word, you’re probably pushing it too fast. Don’t be discouraged by your speed. The more you run, the faster you’ll get. It takes time.

Get fitted for shoes: If you’re just starting running, get the right shoes! This will make a huge difference in how your body and your feet will feel. Find a running store that will videotape you running on a treadmill (This is a complimentary service. Three Rivers Running in Fort Wayne is a great store or The Running Company in Indianapolis is also awesome.). They’ll then evaluate how you run – how your foot falls, if you pronate, your foot shape, etc. The right shoe will provide you with the right support in the right areas. And a shoe that fits won’t leave you with blisters and a sore foot. I got fitted for my first pair of shoes and have just bought the same shoe (in updated models) every year since. I rarely get blisters or sore feet.

Running form: Running form is really important in keeping your body healthy and helping you have the best run possible. If you cross your arms in front of your chest, you might end up with a really bad side stitch. If you run trying to take the longest strides possible, you might have knee or ankle pain. Proper running form helps you feel your best while you’re running. Ideally, you want to have good, upright posture. Your arms should swing loosely by your sides, hands grazing your hips. Your foot should land under your hips – not out in front. It’s better to take small, short steps than long, bounding steps. You’ll also want to try to land more on your midfoot than the heel. (See here for a great illustration and article about running form.)

Enjoy the run: Make the run FUN! If you’re not enjoying running, you’re probably not going to stick with it. Find what makes it fun for YOU. Is it new music on your ipod? A book on CD? Podcast downloads from NPR? Maybe it’s no music at all – just being alone, listening to your breathing and your feet. Maybe you like the competitive edge – pushing yourself a little further every time. Whatever it is, find what you love about running. And if you genuinely just don’t love it and can’t love it, find what you do love! Maybe it’s walking or biking or tennis or the elliptical. Just find what works for you – you’ll stick with something you really love.
When it all comes down to it, running is about what works for you. You don’t have to run as fast as someone else or as far. You don’t have to run a certain number of days a week or a certain number of minutes. Just find what works for you, what makes you feel your best! And if you do start running and love it, come tell me about it! I would love to hear about it!

Submit your running: Once you start running it’s easy to get consumed with the numbers – how far you’ve gone, how fast, your total mileage, if you beat last week’s time, if you beat last month’s mileage, etc. Submit your running to God and let Him use it the way he wants to. For me, God used running to connect me in a positive way to my body and to help build my self-confidence. It’ll look different for everyone, but make sure you’re running for the right reasons! God wants to use all things to help build and grow us!

april fast

Earlier this month I was debating what to fast from…
We decided on doing a simple grocery fast
For us, this means that for the month of April we will only buy milk, eggs, and produce from the grocery and replace only staples (flour, p.b., bread products, crackers, toilet paper) if necessary

This fast is two-fold:
1. It will save us money because I am a crazy impulse shopping at the grocery – I binge on cookies.
2. It will help us use our immense stock of frozen food and random pantry items that accumulate from my trips to Troyers (local Amish grocery) that have different products for cheap each time I visit

I am sad about this fast because:
1. It will be a sacrifice for me not to buy oreos and nutella.
2. I love knowing I have a stock of lots of frozen food and canned goods because I do not do well on strict menu plan.  I will not make baked fish for dinner even if I have planned for it if I come home from school and do not have an appetite for fish.

We’ll see how this goes!!!

purity in the home

A few months ago we were challenged in our MomLife group to live our lives with purity in our home
My disclaimer: this looks differently for every family…

We were challenged with many different things to consider in order to guard our children against sin and sinful influence and raise them up for Christ
Education: this particular mom has been convicted to homeschool so she can teach and train her children in not only a Godly environment but with Christian material
Social activities: who are we letting mold our children – coaches/teachers/instructors that we do not even know…or know if we agree with their values and how they will influence our children?
Media influence: if we would not allow people to act in our living room in the way they behave with one another on our t.v. screen, then why are we allowing them to essentially be in our living room?!
Friendships: we were challenged to not let our children spend the night with friends and limit family that they spend the night with. This challenge took us all by surprise, but made more sense the more she spoke about it. What did you do when you spent the night with friends when you were young? Was it edifying to Christ? I know my activities weren’t: it was the first time I was introduced to pornographic material, having internet conversations/chats with complete strangers, sneaking out to see/be with boys or sneaking them in, watching movies that were frightening and continue to haunt me…

While some of this thinking may seem radical – I am convicted with the thought that God gave Mylin to us to raise. Her wellbeing, education, and safety are our responsibility. At all costs, I will protect her.
I know I cannot control her life or our world, but I can make changes and commitments to myself and our family that will protect her in every way I know how.
She challenged us overall to find other families that are like-minded so that we do not go on this journey alone – and so that our children do not go on this journey alone…that they aren’t the only ‘weird’ ones that don’t get to spend the night with friends!

In what ways do you protect your family and their purity?
Please teach us!!!