Last week, I told you about a new book: Children in Church. You can jump back to last week's Kids in the Word post to read my review. We've been putting the principles from this book into practice and today I'm going to give you a look into our “church bag”.
What's a Church Bag?
A church bag is simple: It's a bag of various things that you take to church with you to help your kids engage in corporate worship. For little ones, these items are usually more focused on keeping them still and quiet. For older kids, these items are more focused on giving them tools to help them listen to and process the sermon. It's usually best if these things are special and only used for church time.
What's in Our Church Bag?
We have a shared church bag. I use my cool MOB Society bag because it's the perfect size and sturdy. Everything we need for Jonathan (6) and Jacob (2) goes into one bag. As they get older, we may split out the items and give them their own bags, but this is the best option for us right now.
In our church bag you'll find:
For Jacob (2)
- Children's Bible
- A couple small board books
- A couple of dinosaurs figures – These occasionally backfire on us causing some noise, but most of the time he plays quietly with them.
- An occasional surprise item to play with that is not normally kept in the bag
For Jonathan (6)
- Jonathan's NIV Bible – He adds this to the bag each Sunday morning because this Bible is kept by his bed for reading each morning during the week.
- Because the goal at this time is to get Jonathan to pay attention to the sermon, there are no “toys” for him in the bag.
- Blank white paper
- Primary lined writing paper
- Colored Pencils – We use these during the week, so the container is added each Sunday morning. I may get a special set of pencils or crayons for each child when we move to separate bags.
We attend a small home church / church plant. At this time, there are only 3 small children. They usually gather on the floor together to listen and most often draw or color pictures. We prompt Jonathan to listen for particular words, find and copy a verse that's being read, or draw a picture related to the sermon topic. Jacob just plays or colors at this point.
How have you kept your Kids in the Word this week? How do you or your church handle “children in church”? Do you have a “church bag?” Share in the comments or link up a blog post about kids AND Bible, character, or worldview.
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