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Parenting through Genesis 1

10.28.15 | Family | by Anne Mickelson

     You’ve probably heard the statistic before but it’s worth repeating -- as a parent, you have over 3,000 hours per year with your child in your home.  That’s compared to the average 40 hours our church will spend with them on Sunday mornings.  That’s why at Mill City we believe partnership is primary.

    We spend most of our energy equipping YOU!  We want to equip you to participate in what God is doing in the ordinary ins and outs of life in your family.  That is where the real spiritual formation happens (Deuteronomy 6).

    What’s the Big Deal About Genesis 1?

    Too often with kids (and ourselves), we skim past the creation story (Genesis 1-2) and focus on Adam and Eve’s sin (Genesis 3).  But in doing this, we miss the foundational truth that God created everything good.  The ramifications of this are huge -- affecting our self-image, our understanding of how to care for creation, how we view our neighbors, and so on.

    During the month of September in Mini & Mighty Mills, we focused on how God made everything good.  We focused on the intrinsic and immeasurable worth of God’s creation.  

    This is foundational to our theology at Mill CIty.  It is much easier to show love to our neighbors when we see the intrinsic value of them as people created by God.  Similarly, we gain a healthy self-image, which is vital in a culture that is constantly criticizing us and telling us we don’t measure up.  God looked at His creation and said, “It is good!”  Let’s gain that perspective.

    Below are a variety of ways you can focus on the goodness of creation together with your child.  Don’t feel pressured to do all the ideas listed.  Pick one and try it out.

    Outside:

    Read Genesis 1-2 outside, preferably in a park or garden.  If the weather is too chilly, cozy up by the window and let your child look outside as you read the Bible story.  Take some time to look around at God’s creation together -- trees, clouds, birds, flowers, insects, and more.  Discuss together, if you could have been there on any of the days of creation, which day would you choose?  Why?

    Around the Table:

    Read Genesis 1:29 while sharing dinner together this month.  Talk about how God created plants, fruit, etc., with the idea that we’d need food to sustain us.  Discuss what parts of your meal come from what plants/animals.  Just think -- good food was God’s idea!  Praise God for making good food.

    moonAt Bedtime:

    Read Colossians 1:16 together.  Talk about how God made everything and everyone, including those in authority over us -- like teachers, principals, etc.  Have your child name authority figures in his/her life.  Does your child see the value of those individuals?  Take time to thank God for creating those individuals.

    Just for Fun...

    • Take the scenic route home from school -- visiting a park or a lake.  intentionally take time to slow down with your child to notice and enjoy God’s creation.
    • Find time to rest this month as a family -- not just sleeping.  What is restful for your family?  What reenergizes you?  A bike ride?  Watching a movie?  Baking cookies together?  If the God of the universe prioritized rest as part of His “rhythm”, so too must we.
    • Celebrate the goodness in life!  When you’re eating good ice cream, or wake up in a good mood, or have a really good conversation with a friend, point it out to your child!  Make it a goal to focus on the good all month long -- God does!  He looked at His creation and saw that it was good.  And still today, He sees the good in us!
    • Create art with your child.  God created us in His image - and that means He gave us the power to create.  Schedule time this month to make a craft project with your kid.  Maybe you bring watercolor paints and paper outside before bed and paint the sunset together.  Or you can take out play dough and create funny sculptures together.  God had a ton of fun creating in Genesis 1.  Have fun being creative together!

    **Adapted from Tru Curriculum Homefront Weekly, published by David C. Cook, 2015.