Way of Love Home Study

Book used: The Very Best Day: The Way of Love for Children by Roger Hutchison

Discussion and activities by The Rev. Lauren Villemuer-Drenth

For more information on the Way of Love or to connect to an adult focused study or watch videos, please visit: The Episcopal Church: Way of Love

I started with an All Read on Zoom. I sent the link out and had children and their families join in with their copy of the book.

Discussion after first read of the book:

  • Which part is your favorite?  Why?
  • Have you heard of the Way of Love?  What do you think it means?
  • Do any of the book topics (Turn, Learn, Pray, Worship, Bless, Go, and Rest) not make sense?
  • Do you have one you think is more important?  Why?
  • Do you have one you do not think should be included in the Way of Love?  Why?
  • I wonder if you would add any?

For the following few weeks, every few days, do one of the following deeper dive.

Turn: Reread the first few pages.  From the book answer: “What ways do I grow when I turn towards Jesus’ love?”

Then today or in the following days. Choose one or more of the activities below:

  1. Can you think of a mistake or wrong choice you made?  How did you turn back to love (God’s way) to make it right?
  2. Play a game called, “Turn”.  Every time someone uses a directional word (down, up, right, left, etc.) throughout the day, say, “Turn to God’s love!”  At the end of the day, who caught the most?
  3. God often guides us by having us feel joy or having strong feelings about something.  How can you use that “something” to help others?  For example, if it is drawing, can you draw a picture and mail it to a fellow member of the church?  If you need help, just ask Deacon Lauren.

Learn: Reread the pages on “Learn”.  From the book answer: “How can you learn more about Jesus and his love?”

Then today or in the following days. Choose one or more of the activities below:

  1. What is your favorite Bible story?  Share it with someone else.  Make a picture book, act it out, or make a “puppet” show to share it.
  2. Watch Wednesdays’ Children’s Chapel at 9:30 AM on Facebook Live.  Which “Face of Easter” is your favorite?
  3. Read a story as a family about Jesus (example healing story, feeding story, walking on water, etc.) What parts do you like best?  If you were in the story, what would you say to Jesus?

Pray: Reread the pages on “Pray”.  From the book answer: “When do you pray?  What do you say when you talk to God?”  What is prayer for you? What do you think prayer was for the people of the Bible? Today or in the following days. Choose one or more of the activities below:

  1. Make a prayer list and pray each persons’ name during a prayer time.  Can you do this for 2 days? What about 3 days?  What about 5 days?
  2. Make a Prayer Bowl for your family.  All put their prayer request in it as they come up.  Once a day, pray the contents of the bowl.  Once a week, as a family, pull out and pray all the requests.  Then empty the bowl and start again.
  3. Did you know a hymn is a prayer?  Which is your favorite song about God?  Can you sing a prayer now?  Do it.

Worship: Reread the pages on “Worship”.  From the book answer: “What is your favorite part of worship?  Why?” What is worship for you? Today or in the following days. Choose one or more of the activities below:

  1. Join online for worship.  St. Paul’s is doing the Daily office at 8:15AM, Noon, and 5:30 PM.  Children’s Chapel (worship for children) is Sundays about 10:40AM (after 10:00 AM Sunday Morning Prayer) and Wednesdays at 9:30 AM.  All on Facebook Live.
  2. In the Lent-in-a-Bag, there is a Family Services leaflet from the “Daily Devotions for Families” from the Book of Common Prayer. Do the Morning or Early Evening Service every day for 5 days as a family.
  3. Pick a Bible story and lead your family in worship.  Use songs and prayers, too.

Bless: Reread the pages on “Bless.”  From the book answer: “You are a blessing.  Can you name the ways?” Today or in the following days. Choose one or more of the activities below:

  1. Draw a picture of yourself and add pictures or words of ways you bless others.  For a few days, at night, add ways you have blessed others to your picture.
  2. Think of someone who means a lot to you at church.  Is it a teacher? A smiling usher? Someone who shares your pew?  One of the clergy?  Write them a card or letter telling them that they have blessed you.  Mail it.
  3. Write down three ways you can bless your family over the next few days.  Do the them and think about what happened when you did them. How did it make you feel?  How did it make the other person feel?

Go: Reread the pages on “Go.”  From the book answer: “What does ‘Go in peace to love and serve the Lord’ mean to you?”  Choose one or more of the activities below:

  1. Can you think of a way to serve others from home?  Pick one and do it!
  2. Bake or make a snack for a neighbor. Someone who does not have a lot of family close by is especially thoughtful.  Make a card to go with it.  Then deliver it to their door.
  3. Make a video telling someone how much they mean to you.  Then send it to them.

Rest: Reread the pages on “Rest.”  From the book answer: “What do you do to slow down and rest?”  Choose one or more of the activities below:

  1. Can you find a way to rest for 3 hours that does not include technology or electronic games?  Do it.
  2. We rest so we can take care of our minds, bodies, emotions, and spirit.  Either sit outside or take a walk and focus on nature and the beauty around you.
  3. Pretend you are “camping” in the living room.  Settle down in your “tent’ and share animal or other outdoor type stories.  What about roasting marshmellows in the fireplace?

Reread the whole book and ask yourself the questions at the beginning again.  Which was the hardest to do?  Which was the easiest?  Did any surprise you?  If you were going to keep one, which will you do regularly?

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