Thursday, 26 November 2015

Advent Calendar Treat Bags - Creating Memories with the True Meaning of Christmas

Advent Calendar Treat Bags - Creating Memories with the True Meaning of Christmas

I posted a couple photo's this morning on FB of this little advent project I've been working on for my kids... a friend posted that I should 'Blog it', so I thought good idea. 
This is a super fun way to do an advent calendar with your kids, or family of any age, using Scripture cards that tell the Christmas story of our Saviour's birth.  This year I wanted to focus on the true meaning of Christmas as family time with my kids.  We plan on opening one advent bag each night before dinner, read the scripture in the Bible, discuss and share a little treat.  Christmas can get so busy with the hustle and bustle, this will be a great way to have a devotion time with the family each night leading up to Christmas Day.
I can't take credit for any of the ideas, I got them all off Pinterest - and growing up my mom did this with us.  It was one of my favourite memories that I'm excited to pass on to my kids.
I got all the items from 3 stores: The Dollar Store, Michaels & Bulk Barn. (in Canada)
-The Scripture Cards were downloaded off a free printable site: click here to download
-White acrylic paint (you can use craft paint from a dollar store)
-Sponge brush
-Number stencil (found at Michaels)
-25 burlap bags with draw string (I found at the Dollar Store)
-25 treats, candies, ornaments, crafts, stickers, etc. to fill each bag (I have 3 boys, so I found 3 of each thing to be equal...) Some items I had only one thing (ex: baby Jesus figurine) and added 3 little candies for each of the kids.
-burlap string to tie on my ladder (I already had the ladder...I've seen branches used, hung from a curtain rods, put in a basket, so many fun ways to display!)
That's it!!  Have fun creating memories with your kids and sharing with them the true meaning of Christmas.
"For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace." (Isaiah 9:6)
"The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth." (John 1:14)

I plan on using those little close-pins (bought at Michaels) to clip the scripture card on the front of each bag as we open them.  Then we can count down the days...
Happy Christmas Preparation!  May the focus be on the One who bridged the gap, bringing Heaven to Earth...Jesus Christ.  Thank you Father for sending your son to die for us so we can have life abundantly, here and now. 
"For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life." (John 3:16)
Many Blessings,

Friday, 20 November 2015

revive Southern Caribbean - Painting on a Cruise Ship

revive Southern Caribbean - Painting on a Cruise Ship

My husband and I had the privilege to travel with Time to Revive this past week, to the Southern Caribbean islands aboard a Celebrity Cruise.   Our focus was to balance rest and relaxation at the same time as sharing the love of Christ with people on the islands. The combination was truly amazing. We are continuing to learn that walking with the Holy Spirit isn’t just something you do when you feel like it; it’s a lifestyle that should never be turned off. Even while on the cruise ship, we found divine appointments set up by the Lord to touch people’s lives.

Prophetic painting on a cruise ship was a first for me. Learning to adapt to our environments was another focus on our trip. As we go out to advance the Kingdom of God, we need to be able to roll with any circumstance we are put in. Getting over the nausea of the sea the first few days, I thoroughly enjoyed the challenge and adventure of painting on the ship.
The painting that set the stage for myself was the anchor. With the obvious of being on a ship surrounded by nothing but sea, it was a reminder of the hope anchored in Christ.
Hebrews 6:19-20
“We have this hope as an anchor for the soul, firm and secure. It enters the inner sanctuary behind the curtain, where our forerunner, Jesus, has entered on our behalf.”
We are secure tethered to the cross. The hope set out before us that have already been secured by Jesus. We have nothing to fear. He has gone before us, for us.

On two of our port stops, Grenada and St. Lucia, the Lord opened the doors for us to join with local churches to train, equip and go out together to share the Gospel to the locals. In only 2 short hours on the streets, we had 65 people to follow up with in Grenada and 77 people in St. Lucia! The islands are hungry for the love of Jesus. We continue to pray for the people there as they continue to revive the islands.

We are all like pearls in the Kingdom. Waiting to be discovered. Every person on earth is a precious pearl inside a shell that often we don’t deem valuable or worth anything.   God sees everyone precious. Every person can be restored, discovered and is valuable in the Kingdom of Heaven.
Matthew 13:45
“Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a merchant looking for fine pearls.”
One of the highlights for myself was seeing the need to love and serve the workers on the ship. The Lord opened doors for us to have the workers on the ship meet after their shifts at 11:00pm to have a worship service. We were there to serve them. Pour into their needs to get rest and refueling in the Lord. Crew workers from all different nations of the world met together as we prayed, sang, ministered, gave prophetic words and encouragement. We saw many come to Christ and the light shone brighter on the ship. The atmosphere shifted through the halls and rooms on the boat. It was incredible.

This will be an experience I will never forget. Enjoying fellowship, meeting new friends, soaking up the sun, fun, rest and ministry all at the same time.

Bless you all today!
*the paintings will be added to my website shortly.