Glad Tidings of Great Joy | Luke 2:10

Sketch note based on Luke 2:10 and the concept of joyIn Luke 2:10, the angel tells the shepherds he has good news that will bring joy. Joy is a concept we confuse with happiness. We can have joy even when we are not happy. Joy is connected with hope. We can be joyful in dire circumstances but have joy because we know this is not the end. Joy is anticipation that there is a good ending and the source is very good. Continue reading “Glad Tidings of Great Joy | Luke 2:10”

Why drawing a story can make a big difference in children’s ministry

Yesterday, I got to do something that has scared me and gives me a bit of a thrill every time I do it. I told the story of David, Nabal and Abigail as I drew it. Now if you ask me to draw a cartoon, I can oblige with a quick doodle. And if you ask me to tell a story, I can be rather quick with some details and a few exaggerations for effect. But I discovered a few years ago, telling a story while I talk can make for some drama within my head.

When I draw as I tell a story, I have to make my left side of my brain and the right side play well together. As I’m drawing, I have to remind myself to say a few words about that mean Nabal, and David’s angry soldiers. It’s a bit of a stretch.

And that’s why I do it. I want the kids to engage both sides of their mind when they hear the story.  I want the logical, left brain kids to get the facts. I want the creative, right brain kids to see the story come to life with a marker and paper. It’s a little low-tech, but not quite flannel graph. It’s a sweet spot for me.

I do it because I remember when an artist came to my church when I was a teen. He drew these beautiful scenes in chalk and had lighting effects that made the water appear to be moving. He made a sunset come to life. It lit up my imagination and made me see creative through the church in a different way.

My doodles aren’t anywhere near the work of art of that guy, but if I can help a child remember the story and maybe inspire him or her to tell it in their creative way, then I’ve done my job.

Besides, It’s fun flying without a net. It brings a little adventure to one’s day!

Memorizing Those Books of the Bible

Cartoon of a boy bragging he knows all the books of the Bible

Cartoon of a boy bragging to another, “I memorized the books of the Bible. Did you know they’re all bestsellers?” Continue reading “Memorizing Those Books of the Bible”

Why atmosphere is important in the classroom

I read this blog post from the Washington Post this morning entitled Smart design + school = health. The final quote stood out to me:

“We really focused on what kids need. What I see in that space are kids gravitating to that atmosphere because they know it’s for them, about them. Everything is tailored to their needs.”-Dina Sorensen, project designer, VMDO Architects

Too often, when an architect or designer plans classrooms, they design for best use of space at the best price. What if we designed classrooms so they didn’t feel like an institution? What if we considered the return on investment if the classroom actually helped learning?

When it comes to church classrooms, this is especially important. No child wants to come to a place where it looks like a plain, boring institution. We like restaurants that have some atmosphere and kids like a place just for them that has a little atmosphere too.

I see churches do this all the time with Vacation Bible school. They go all out to make a week special for the children. It is especially good for a church to consider how to make their place welcoming to kids throughout the year.

We gravitate towards restaurants with a nice atmosphere. Churches need to consider how much atmosphere their children’s area has.

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Impressive Misquote

Cartoon of a guy misquoting from The Bible

Cartoon of two debating men. One says, “Impressive quote. But that isn’t in the Bible. It’s from Benjamin Franklin.”

Why do we like to debate? What is it about a comment here or there that makes me want to get in the last word? Sometimes, when I am making the case about something, I wonder if what I said was really from the source I thought it was. But nobody wants the facts to get in the way of a good argument, do they?

Yesterday, I got into a Twitter argument with a guy pretending to be a nineteenth century preacher. How silly is that?  He’s making accusations as if he is the reincarnation of this evangelist, and I took him seriously. Sometimes my blood boils about the silliest things.

So keep your head out there! Don’t misquote from the Bible and certainly don’t argue with long-dead saints. It’s just not worth it.

I drew this for the March, 2014 Church of God e-newsletter.

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