Brain Game

imageHere’s an idea I adapted from a friend.  She calls it “Circle Time”.

What it is:  near the beginning of your school day (we do it right after our Bible lesson), hit several subjects quick, in the form of a little quiz-challenge.  I had no idea how our boys would take it, but jumped right in and tried. They actually love it, and it’s their favorite part of our school day currently (excluding break time)!

What we do:

I pull two to four cards from our Bible Question Card box related to our Bible lessons for that week Here’s what we use but any quiz book/cards/out of your head will do.

First–I ask 2-4 Bible questions quickly and see who can answer!

Next–if we have time, we do a Bible sword drill type question.  I read a verse and see who can find where I’m reading. I try to find important verses that they’d find handy to know.

Next comes the map game. Simply–I name a country, they find it on the map with the capital.  We are focusing on European countries, and I’ve been surprised at how many I’m not all that familiar with. For us, it’s better than focusing on the whole globe.  Learn one area well before moving on.  I usually do one or two only.

After countries we do 2 states.  Most of the boys know their states and capitals pretty well, so I may say the abbreviation, and let them find it quickly. Or, to make it harder, I’ve tried telling facts about the state, such as flower, nickname, etc.  They always want one more.  Everyone wants to find one first. I make it a point to stop before they get tired of it so they look forward to next time.

Finally, we go quickly over math facts. I do get groans here, but just pretend I can’t hear them.  We run through mostly times and division tables, 2-3 sets, for review.  I just have one boy who struggles here, so it’s nice to not single him out.  He gets the benefit of hearing and saying the correct answers, and we do more individual review later on.  This always reminds me of the Little House on the Prairie school scenes, where all the children recite together.

On a good day, this takes about ten minutes or less. Some days have stretched out more, mostly because the boys want more Bible navigation challenges, or more map searching. I like to see them excited. I am not kidding myself–I believe much of their enthusiasm  is fueled my the male need to conquer and win. For that reason, I attempt to avoid any spirit of competition, which immediately kills the nice learning atmosphere that we so desire!!

Thank you, Gloria, for the winning idea you passed along to me!

Now go make your own Brain Game!

Prepared?

“Shall not the judge of all the earth shall do right?”  Genesis 18:25

Tomorrow is the day. Court.  As much as my husband and I hoped to avoid it, we get to go.

 

What at will happen there?  Will the truth be told?  I believe it will, but that little twinge of doubt causes a ball of stress inside to make its presence known.

 

I know now we have done everything that we know of to get prepared. Documents are ready to hand over to the judge to tell our story.  We spent time outlining the timeline of events and have scrutinized our actions. We wonder what the judge will look for.  Have we done enough?  Did we follow all the rules?  Will our good intentions be understood, or will our motives be misrepresented?

 

With much care, we have analyzed our decisions, and appearing before the judge fills us with seriousness. We carefully consider how we will look when we appear in court, and select clothing that will convey respect and dignity.  We want to look like respectable people, and not call undue attention to ourselves in a showy, distracting way.  We would not show up in a careless dress either, indicating a flippant attitude towards the one who will be deciding our case.

 

We plan to arrive early, with all of our documents, our friend and realtor for moral support.  More importantly, we will show up as three people, but many more will go with us–for we have prayed that God’s holy angels will attend us.  So many good friends and prayer warriors have promised to intercede for us, that God will listen and hear our case, even as the judge locally will hear us.  So, we know that no matter what happens in the court room will be what God has allowed and planned for, whether we enjoy the outcome or not.  We will accept it at His will for us, for we have surrendered this case into His hands.

 

My mind automatically jumped to the connection between our physical preparation to meet the judge and our spiritual preparation to meet a higher Judge.  Do we not believe we are living in the Great Day of Atonement, where our cases are being decided for eternity, even as we go about our daily lives?  Am I as concerned about my preparation for when my case is brought before the Judge who never makes a mistake?    It really is a sobering thought.  Does my life, my attitude, my dress, and my words reflect the same respect that I wish to show to this earthly judge?  I am afraid that I must admit that this does not capture my attention as much as it really aught to.  Would I show up to the all-important court scene with no preparation?  I hope not.  My life and actions will answer that question.

 

Fast forward now…

 

I now have the benefit of retrospect, as I did not finish this post prior to the court date.

 

I have to say that I am amazed at how God gave me peace in spite of my nervousness.  As I drove to the appointment, I literally had a praise service in my car.  Bible promises flooded my mind, and since many of them were in song, I sang them aloud!  And as I did this, God brought more to my mind, one right after another!!

 

“The Lord your God, who goeth before you, He shall fight for you!”  Deuteronomy 1:30

 

“You shall not need to fight in this battle:  set yourselves, stand ye still, and see the salvation of the Lord with you, Oh, Judah and Jerusalem, fear not, nor be dismayed; tomorrow go out against them: for the Lord will be with you.

For the battle is not yours, but God’s.”  2 Chronicles 20:17, 15

 

“I would have lost heart, unless I had believed that I would see the goodness of the Lord, in the land of the living.  Wait on the Lord, be of good courage, and He shall strengthen your hearts.  Wait, I say, on the Lord.”  Psalm 27:13,14. NKJV

 

There were more as I drove along.  I realized that these verses were ones that I had memorized at different times with my boys as songs.  Isn’t God amazing?  He knows we need these verses, and He is faithful to bring them to remembrance.  We need to be more faithful to put them into our brains!!!!

 

The outcome was that The Lord did sustain us.  He went before us, and our case was decided in a just manner.  The judge was a good representative of our Heavenly judge in several ways.  He treated both parties with respect and kindness, even while upholding the law.  Even though the case may have been decided somewhat more in our favor, it was not a biased decision.  He simply looked at what was fair and just, and made his judgement.  We didn’t feel like we received special treatment at the expense of another, but we did feel like he understood our case.  He offered help to the other side as well.  There was some sadness and despair, which, unfortunately, comes many times, with choices made and laws broken.

 

In the end, we will each be able to say that our case was decided in a just manner.  We may have eternal thankfulness at our verdict, or we may experience the grief and despair that comes with persitently choosing to continue in a law-breaking life.  Thankfully, each of us do have a choice, and it can begin today.

 

I want to be prepared.  How about you?