“Study” doesn’t have to be a 4-letter word.


Caleb looked at me with furrowed forehead and whined, “I’ve been at school all day, do we really have to ‘study’ anymore today?” The same Caleb who a month later would beg for time to ‘study’ during class. Because study isn’t about memorizing facts or lectures from the teacher. It is about diving into God’s Word and learning to listen for what God has to say to my heart, today, right here & now.

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Children are Never Too Young

I’m so excited to invite Josh Ross to our conversation today. Josh is the Preaching Minister at Sycamore View Church in Memphis, TN. I had the great honor of working under his leadership for 2 short years. I’ve known few other church leaders who are more humble and Kingdom-hearted than Josh. Josh is the author of Scarred Faith and co-author of Bringing Heaven to Earth. He is married to his best friend, Kayci (who is an even better speaker than him); together they have two boys, Truitt (age 8) and Noah (age 6), whose prayers move mountains.

I’m so grateful Josh agreed to share some insights from a Preaching Minister’s standpoint. He is truly a champion for Children’s Ministry. Welcome, Josh.

I’ve had the privilege to share in a few Passover meals throughout the years. It has become something I crave every spring. I get together with other Christians, and since we are followers of Jesus, we celebrate the Passover with Jesus as the main event. It is memorable, inspiring, and informative.

The first time I participated in a Passover meal, I was stunned to see how involved children were. I went back and read Exodus 11, and sure enough, it is in there. Children were not only present, but they participated.

It took me a little while to reconcile this with how our churches attempt to keep their children quiet during communion. Yet the meal (Passover) which our communion (Eucharist) comes from involved children talking…a lot.

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“The Lord,” by Peyton, age 7

Today’s Child’s Praise is brought to you by my favorite sister-in-law, Shannon Manzi, who is a 1st grade teacher in Memphis, Tenn., at a private (non-religious affiliated) school. Shannon is passionate about children and is an amazing teacher. She spent several years in Rwanda teaching and loving the children God brought her way. I am blessed to not only call her family but also a favorite friend. I’m so grateful she shared this Child’s Praise with us for today.

I have a really awesome cinquain poem to share from one of my students. The format for a cinquain poem is:
Line 1: one word (noun)/your topic

Line 2: 2 adjectives that describe it
Line 3: 3 verbs that relate
Line 4: a short phrase
Line 5: a synonym for your first noun

Most students write about dogs, puppies, or other things kids love, but this student’s was just amazing!!

Peyton Cinguain Poem

Through the praise of children and infants you have established a stronghold against your enemies, to silence the foe and the avenger. Psalm 8:2 (NIV)

Glory be to God! Amen, Peyton. Amen.

“Out of the mouth of babes…”

“Out of the mouths of babes…”

This common saying often covers a multitude of unexpected wonderings from children at the most inopportune times. And at God-ordained times.

A daughter asks her Dad to have a tea party with her when he’s already behind at work. After 5 minutes she says, “Daddy, I love you. Thanks for spending time with me.”

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Why Child’s Praise?

Like a dog that gnaws on a bone only to bury it for a time then sniffs it out again to gnaw on it once more, the idea of starting a blog has weighed on me off & on for at least a year. When it did I created a convincing column of Cons and pushed it to the back burners of my mind, pretending like I had convinced God that He was crazy.

Until He made Himself abundantly clear, “No, really. I’m not the crazy one.”

 My response was very respectful: “Fine! If this is really something you want me to do, You’re going to have to give me a name for this stupid blog…and a purpose…AND ideas.”

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