Quarantined… with Children

Psalm 127:3-5a

Behold, children are a gift of the Lord, the fruit of the womb is a reward.  Like arrows in the hand of a warrior, so are the children of one’s youth.  How blessed is the man whose quiver is full of them.

family devotions

This afternoon’s encouragement is for those self-quarantining with kids.  It has been awhile for Janine and I… but I remember those days.  I had to laugh at Drew Dyck’s email yesterday called “Life in Lockdown.”

Life on Lockdown

I live in Washington state. On Sunday, our Governor ordered all restaurants to close and banned gatherings of more than 50 people. So basically, like an increasing number of Americans, I’m stuck at home.

Initially, this sounded fine to me. We’re stocked up on groceries, so I was looking forward to getting a little break from the outside world. Grace and I could have romantic dinners, curl up in front of the fire and read. Maybe watch movie before bed. Ah, sweet quarantine! But then I realized I’d overlooked one very important fact. Actually, three: our children. Our bouncing-off-the-walls, only occasionally obedient, young kids. A chill ran down my spine as I realized we were quarantined … with them.

But we’re finding ways of coping. On Sunday, since church was cancelled, I sat the kids down in the living room, opened my Bible and delivered a powerful message. Well, I thought it was powerful. They squirmed and laughed talked through my message. “Be quiet! If you don’t settle down there are going to be serious consequences. This passage is about God’s love!”

I’m working from home, which is nothing new (I’ve worked from home for the past 5 years). What is new is having kids at home with me. And it’s pretty irritating. They steal the pens off my desk and plead with me to come outside. “Dad, you’re so boring! Why do you look at that screen ALL day?”

Fortunately, I’ve come up with a solution for these unwelcome intrusions—and it comes straight from Scripture. Henceforth, I have decreed that no child shall approach me unless I have raised my royal scepter (ala the king in the book of Esther).

Unfortunately, Amazon is fresh out of royal scepters. I guess a royal broom will have to do.

From talking with my church members with children these past few days I sense there is a scramble to keep children occupied for what appears to be an unknown period of time.

I’m sure some of you out there have had some great ideas that you might want to share with everyone.  In the comments below let us know what is working for you.  Some of you who don’t have children in the home right now… but remember ideas that are still tried and true… write and share those.

Here are a couple of things I’ve seen this week around the web…

#1 –  David C. Cook is offering “13 Very Awesome Promises and How God Always Keeps Them” by Mikal Keefer for free e-book download today.  It is a lesson book to teach lessons of faith to children.  They are also offering several others books in their series of “13” books for 99 cents each.  If you have trouble finding it on Amazon.com, email me (pastorpresnell@yahoo.com) and I will email you back a link.

#2 – This might be a good time to watch (or re-watch) the Disney film “The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe” by C. S. Lewis.  The context of the film is kids on lockdown… sent to a country home for their safety during WW2.  The movie has several themes such as forgiveness, sacrifice and salvation that would spur some great family conversation. It is also a beautiful picture of what Jesus has done for us… in the character of Aslan, the lion.  You could watch this together on Disney+  or you could get a copy-if you’re local I’ll loan you one- and you could read it to them.

#3 – tasteofhome.com has a collection of easy recipes to bake with your kids.  Just paste https://www.tasteofhome.com/collection/easy-baking-recipes-for-kids/ into your browser.

How about it?  Anyone else have any ideas.

Till tomorrow.  Be wise.  Stay safe.  And remember to love one another.

Pastor Wayne

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