Friday, July 20, 2012

Practical Lessons from Nature - Chapter 7

This chapter is just wonderful! So practical with such clear guidelines of how to teach our children in nature. I just love being in the outdoors, but I often find that I get myself so busy that i don't even step out of the house all day. It is physically and spiritually bad for me and it is especially wrong because I have children who need to be taught from the lessons of nature. I know that I need to prioritise my time in the things that are most important, and spending time with my children in the outdoors and drawing lessons from Gods 'Nature' textbook is just this.

The Sabbath day is given to our children for one main reason. It is to draw their minds up to God through the nature around them. Yes it requires much thought and energy on the parents part, but what blessings our children and ourselves will receive. We really enjoy going for a walk in nature on Sabbath afternoons with our boys, and it is the time they enjoy best. BUT, I must say that we have so much more to do in the regard of teaching from nature. Often we go for a walk but we don't learn any practical lessons which draw us closer to God. This week we started looking for objects in nature that reminded us of a story, lesson or God. It was amazing what the boys came up with! Once they chose an object, we continued with the theme and talked about it. We even did this activity in the car whilst driving! It was great fun.

GARDENING - there are so many lessons to learn from it. There are so many varieties of plants, so from each one we can learn practical and spiritual lessons:
  • Soil
  • Transplanting
  • Care of young plants
  • Pruning
  • Watering
  • Shielding from frost
  • Shielding from sun
  • Keeping out weeds
  • Controlling disease and insect pests
  • Training plants
  • Arranging plants

When our children start to work in their gardens, it cultivates in them carefulness, patience, attention to detail and obedience to law. All these things they see as necessary in the plants life so it has a convicting effect on them too. If you do not have a garden, I urge you to start one. Even if it is in pots to start out with. Your children will reap great rewards from it.

The parable in the Bible about the 'Sower and the Seed' can be made so practical for our children too:
  • The children can prepare the soil and sow the seed. Explain that our heart (garden) must be prepared for the good seed.
  • Our heart (soil) must be broken up by repentance
  • Explain that our heart is a garden and we can plant good or bad seed in it.
  • When you cast the seed down, explain how it can represent Christs death
  • When the seed springs forth a blade, explain the truth of the resurrection
  • As the plants grow, compare between the natural and spiritual.
  • The evil growth (weeds) that chokes the good must be uprooted
  • Just as our plants depend on on God for growth, so must we depend on God to do that which no human power can do.

"We are not merely to tell the child about these creatures of God's. The animals themselves are to be His teachers." CG 58, 59

There are so many lessons to learn from the animals. Here are a few from the chapter:
  • Ants - Patient industry, perseverance in surmounting obstacles, providence for the future, faithfulness.
  • Birds - Trust in God as He provides for them. They gather food, build nests and rear young whilst staying cheerful even though enemies are always seeking to destroy them.
  • Bee - Perfect order, no idleness.

Just imagine all the lessons you can teach from each different animal. AMAZING! We can never run out of resources from Gods great textbook. So this week your activity to start is easy and enjoyable. Get into nature each day with your children and pick a lesson to teach, either from the garden or greater outdoors or an animal. Let us know how you are going by commenting at the end of this blog. I really look forward to hearing about it all and sharing ideas.

God bless and please find the next lesson here.

1 comment:

  1. There are definitely so many lessons to learn from the nature .I'm sure that you'll be able to read one more truly original and exclusive post available at Hope, you'll like it for sure!