Tag Archives: children

How You Can Find Home When You Have Lost Your Way

A look at The Kingdom of Thrim

Have you every lost your way?

Have you had a time where you made a hasty decision?
Have you ever made financial decisions that were not good ones?
Do you listen to God on a daily basis?

A Purposeful Faith

We want our children to have a strong purposeful faith. We want them to trust and believe in God. We want to instil in them good values and faith disciplines.

Valuable Lessons

The Kingdom of Thrim is packed full of valuable lessons – from money, to listening to God, to being creative and using your God-given gifts – to being content with what you have. Help your child find his way.

Created for ages 6 and up, The Kingdom of Thrim brings colour and excitement to a child’s life through vivid watercolour illustrations.

A page from The Kingdom of Thrim

The lessons learned are life lessons as one adult reader said:

“I needed this book. If you feel like you’ve lost your gift or wandered too far from home and aren’t sure if you can find your way back, you need it too.” Jeff Goins

Other happy readers have said,

“This is a delightful children’s book with a strong Biblical message. I loved the soft tone of the illustrations. It would make a wonderful story-book for those bedtime moments that are so important for bonding and teaching.” – Marcia Laycock

“Janis Cox is a beautiful storyteller and lovely illustrator and does an excellent job of presenting a story for both kids and adults that speaks to the very heart, no matter what age you may be. Highly recommended.” – Sally Meadows

To get a copy:

Canadian Amazon

US Amazon

Available in paperback or Kindle

Alternately you can contact me and I will send you one.

Email Janis Cox.

Activities and Research

Both of Janis’ books have children’s activities and research ideas in the back.


Porcupine: Drawing Shouldn’t be Complicated

Drawing Shouldn’t be Complicated

Try 33 Dots to Discover your creativity and God’s Word – porcupine

The other day I read Meg Konovska’s post about her method of painting with 33 dots. This fascinated me as I need more help visualizing pictures.  At first I forgot the number and painted only with 14 dots. Both my 5 year grandson and I tried it with 14. We used shiny paper and markers. It was so much fun.

Here at the 14 dot pictures.

14 dot porcupine challenge

Janis – markers. 14 dot challenge

14 dot porcupine challenge

Grandson Bryce – 14 dot challenge – bear going to school

Now he is excited to try with 33 dots.


Today I tried the 33 dots and immediately saw a porcupine (stylized).


Watercolour Pencil – Janis Cox


Watercolour Pencil – with water – Janis Cox

My thoughts:

When I think of a porcupine I think of prickly and defensive.

We can be like porcupines. We snap. We get defensive.

But porcupines are reacting to danger.

What is pushing our buttons?

God gave us the ability to change. When we see the problem, we can ask for help. When we pray and ask God for help in those situations where our emotions would rather scream, but our spirit wants to halt.

We remember the fruit of the Spirit. Galatians 5:22

“But the fruit of the spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.”

As we head into the busyness of Christmas, reflect on this. Breathe. Seek God. Find His love, joy, peace and hope. Try not to be a porcupine.



How Can I tie it up? A Lesson in Shoe Tying

How Can I Tie it Up? A Lesson in Shoe Tying

Today on #ScribblePicnic Michael gave us this prompt: Tie it up. Since this is the first week back to school my thoughts went to all the tying up of shoes I did as a grade one teacher. And how thrilled I was when those kids could tie them up on their own.

My grandson is going into senior kindergarten and his goal this year is to in his own words, “tie up my shoes really fast”.

tie it up

Therefore my picture today – done very quickly in pencil, then watercolour crayon, is a child learning to tie his shoe.

tie it up


tie it up

As I drew this I realized how complicated the motion of tying up shoes can be. I couldn’t tell where those laces were. And look at how the hands have to twist and turn to make the loops.

When I taught school, velcro had just come into existence. Great I thought – this will make things much easier. Wrong. The kids were so thrilled with the velcro I had trouble keeping them from doing up and undoing their shoes in circle time. Zip. Zip. went the velcro. Enough to drive me crazy.

Tying laces in an art. All ice skaters want to be able to do this task. Although I saw skates the other day that had no laces.

I have seen children make two loops to do their shoes but I tie the old-fashioned way. What about you? BUT….

I learned something today. I have been tying my shoes the wrong way. Here is a TedTalk that shows me how I should be tying them. This makes them stronger and they won’t come apart. I always had ended up double knotting mine. I will try this today.

Here is a cute video about kindergarteners tying their shoes.

I hope you enjoyed today’s post. I am always thrilled how there is something I can draw with the prompt.

tie it up

How Important is a VBS for Children?

A look at my week running a VBS

How rich it is to work with kids! This summer I again had the privilege to run a VBS – Vacation Bible School. We are a small church but we had 14 children most days, aged 4-8.


What amazes me is the sweetness of their hearts. They want to know Jesus. They want to hear stories from His Word. And best of all they love learning scriptures. Between all crafts, games, stories, songs and snacks we really got to know each other.

Jesus said in Matthew 19:14:

“Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.”

That’s why I run this program. The kingdom of heaven belongs to them. (tweet this)

I’m not young. Our church doesn’t have many children. Our congregation is getting older. But for the past 5 years I have run a successful summer program. God brings the workers.

My job is to pray.

God supplies all our needs, including health and energy.

The three most frequent reasons I’ve read of why churches are no longer running a VBS are:

Lack of time, children and volunteers.



I know that there are mega churches, which do hold successful programs. However, many churches are stopping this practice.

Honestly it doesn’t take a lot of preparation if you keep the week simple.

Kids don’t need over-the-top productions to know about Jesus. Sometimes I feel that Jesus might get lost in today’s hubbub of technology, colour, and contraptions.

In my VBS I use the Simple Method. Choose 5 stories. Choose 5 scriptures with the last ones leading to Christ and salvation. Check out Pinterest for crafts and games and songs. And get someone who can prepare nutritious food. Get your supplies ready. And there you are. And pray consistently.



Daniel in the Lions’ Den

We still use an overhead projector to learn the songs. Really? Yes. – old technology is interesting to them.

Every day before we start we have a prayer with the leaders who are present.

As the kids arrive we have a little activity while we wait for everyone. Then we begin with a quiet group time and prayer is always the first thing. Then as I tell the Bible story I watch their eyes – they listen. They are fascinated.

This year we had the privilege to have a biblical story-teller visit us one day. She made the scripture come alive and involved the children. I can see trying that out myself next year.

Yes I will be doing a vacation Bible school next year.

Just offering it is allowing God to show His power in His people. My volunteers worked hard but felt a tremendous satisfaction in a job well-done.

And this verse says the way I felt at the end of the week.

From 3 John 4:

I have no greater joy than to hear that my children are walking in the truth.

May I pray for you and me?

Heavenly Father, thank You for children. Thank you for their desire to know You. Thank You for their creativity which we endeavour to encourage and not squelch. Help them to know You more and more. In Jesus’ name. Amen

Until next time, what does God inspire you to do – that is beyond your comfort zone, energy and time? I would love to hear from you. Drop over to my website at www.janiscox.com. And stay reading His Word.

Please click to get 2 Free EbooksLiving Life — One Word at a Time and Five Ways God Changed Me

Visit my Bookstore.

You can also find me on TwitterPinterest, FacebookInstagram.


3 Methods for Praying Over Your Family

3 Methods for Praying Over Your Family

by Jen Cudmore


From Free Digital Photos

The Bible tells us to pray without ceasing, and it’s important to lift up our family consistently to the Lord. When it comes to praying for our spouse and children, there are three methods we can use.

1) Short, Spur-of-the-moment prayers:

These occur during our day and often in the midst of what we’re doing in the moment. When a concern comes to mind, we lift it up to the Lord in a sentence or two and more on. These are prayers such as “God, help my daughter to ignore that girl who annoys her, the one she now has to sit next to at school.” or “God, help my son to do well on that math test that he studied so hard for.” or “God, give my husband an extra boost of strength today while he works on this new project.”

2) Specific trials/lesson prayers:

These are when your family faces a particular issue that’s difficult. The prayers are focused and specific to that struggle, and typically we pray these multiple times over a week, month, or year. For example, when my daughter became friends with a girl that often manipulated her, I took it to the Lord on many occasions, praying I would be patient and that my daughter wouldn’t be hurt too badly during this learning process. When my son struggled to turn in his homework for a couple years, I prayed often that he would understand and accept responsibility. And when my husband was working two jobs, one of which was a graveyard shift, I prayed every day for extra strength and endurance.

3) Intentional blessing prayers:

These are for planning ahead. If we wait until each negative situation comes along, then we tend to focus more on “God, help!” We need to be intentional and pray for protection, wisdom, and grace before our family encounters a difficult situation. We must pray for the schools our children attend, the staff they interact with, their peers and friends. We need to pray for their relationship with Christ and that they stay grounded in their faith so they are strong when they face daily temptations. All three methods have their purpose and must be utilized.

But no matter what method you prefer or use the most, be sure you’re praying over your family!

Unleash God’s power in your family by seeking Him in every aspect of their lives. And your own as well!


Father, thank you so much for my family. I wish to be a good steward of my home. Make me into the wife and mother You wish me to be. Show me how to pray for my family, and may I always be open to Your prompting for each individual. In Jesus’ name, Amen.


Tweetables: 3 Methods for Praying Over Your Family. (click to Tweet)

Do you lift up your family to the Lord in prayer. (click to Tweet)

Unleash God’s power in your family by seeking Him in every aspect of their lives. (click to Tweet).

Jen Creek small

Jen grew up on the Columbia River Gorge and currently lives in Alaska with her husband, two children, two boxers, and two cats. Her goal is to write novels that encourage women to look for positive qualities in a life partner, and to foster an environment of real romance, rather than fantasy, as they grow old with their spouse. For more, visit her website at http://www.jencudmore.com/. You can also find her on FacebookTwitterPinterest, and Goodreads.


How to Pray for Your Children and Schools

How to Pray for Your Children and Schools

This is a quick post. I found an interesting website called Moms in Prayer. Please check it out.

And a book called: Moms in Prayer by Fern Nichols

momsin prayer

Facebook: MomsinPrayerInternational

Twitter: @momsinprayer

Pinterest: MomsinPrayer

What other books or blogs have you found about praying for our children?

One other I know of is Stormie Omartian’s book called The Power of a Praying Parent.

60 Promises to Pray Over Your Children – book review

60 Promises to Pray Over Your Children – book review60 Promises to Pray Over Your Children

by Roy Lessin (Summerside Press, 2012)

Reviewed by Janet Sketchley

This hard-bound gift book is a great resource for any praying parent. Each prayer is matched with a Scripture verse and a brief inspirational quote, and a green satin ribbon lets you mark your progress through the pages.

Nine sections focus prayers in the areas of blessing, protection, character, community, praise, growth, courage, purpose and knowing God. The prayers are written from a point of view that says “my children” but are easily customizable to “our” and/or “child” … or, for that matter, “grandchild” or “niece/nephew.”

I made a point in each prayer to include my children’s names, and when I reached the end of the book, I began again. The prayers apply to any age of child as well, and again, are customizable. For example, if a reader has a child who’s ignoring the Lord, instead of thanking God for a faith relationship, the reader could thank Him for desiring such a relationship with the child, and pray for the Holy Spirit to draw him/her.

I’ve long been a fan of Roy Lessin’s verse and his devotional website, Meet Me in the Meadow. His words in these carefully-crafted prayers can aid us in regular prayer for the children (of all ages) in our lives.

Amazon link 

[Review copy from my personal library. Amazon link is an affiliate link for The Word Guild.]

Janet Sketchley

Janet Sketchley facebook 180x180

Janet writes about the tenacity of God. Her novel, Heaven’s Prey, releases November 1, 2013 from Choose NOW Publishing. You can find her on her website, Janet Sketchley.

Can We Trust in God’s Sovereignty?

Can We Trust in God’s Sovereignty?

by Stephanie Nickel

Christ our King and Judge

Christ our King and Judge (Photo credit: Lawrence OP)

There is, perhaps, no more difficult a calling when it comes to our role as parents than to trust God’s sovereignty while accepting our responsibility to raise our children “in the nurture and admonition of the Lord” (Ephesians 6:4, KJV).

As Christian parents, our hopes and dreams are far-reaching. We want to instill in our children a love for God and His Word. We want to see that they develop friendships with Christian peers and that they look to mature Christian mentors when they need someone besides us to talk to. We also want to teach them the importance of drawing close to God through prayer.

As new parents, we are in the process of developing our walk with the Lord. We may be overwhelmed at the responsibility of caring for our son and daughter. Some days our dreams of being awarded the Most Godly Parent award crash and burn. We may find it difficult just getting through the day.

And then, before we have the chance to blink, they’re grown. If they are walking with the Lord, our heart swells. If they have turned from Him, we look back and wonder what we should have done differently. And, of course, we find many things to add to our List of Regrets.

The weight of those regrets is like an elephant sitting on our chest.

The air is forced from our lungs and our heart feels as if it’s in a vice. We can become immobilized—or we can do what God wants us to. We can run to Him, confess our shortcomings as parents, and trust Him to forgive us.

And we must remember . . . God is sovereign.

At the end of the day, our child’s walk with Him is between the two of them. Even if they have turned and run full steam in the opposite direction, they cannot outrun Him. As Psalm 139 teaches us, there is nowhere we can flee from His presence.

So, as parents, we must ask God to forgive us for our sins and shortcomings. And as parents, we must pour out our hearts for our children, trusting that He loves them even more than we do.

If you are a new parent, I encourage you to pray with and for your little ones. Show them by example how to walk with the Lord. And yet, when you stumble, ask for and accept God’s forgiveness. Although you may no longer be able to pray with them, the same applies if your children are grown. Trust that He is, indeed, the God who “works all things according to the counsel of his will” (Ephesians 1:11 ESV).

Trust His sovereignty and be empowered by His Spirit.
Seek to fulfill your responsibilities.

Steph Beth Nickel

Headshot 1 Stephanie 2013

Steph Beth is a wife of over 30 years and the mother of three grown children. Steph’s eclectic interests include writing, editing, fitness, and childbirth (she is also a labour doula).
Steph’s was honoured to co-author former Paralympian Deb Willows’ memoir. Living Beyond My Circumstances is scheduled for release at the end of November 2013.
Steph edits for Christian Editing Services under the leadership of Karen Burkett. She is a long-time member of The Word Guild and a recent member of InScribe Christian Writers’ Fellowship.

Steph blogs at Steph’s Electic Interests. Her new author website, Steph Beth Nickel , is a work-in-progress.

Have You Hugged a Chicken Today?

Have You Hugged a Chicken Today?

I couldn’t resist sharing what happened when I visited a homeschooling family. I came to share Tadeo Turtle and do an art activity. However, the family shared their hearts with me – their turtle island, their chickens, their books about turtles and their wonderful smiles. We even had turtle races in the wet grass.

The morning flew by. Thanks to Kim for such an enjoyable day.

To find out more about Tadeo Turtle and how to get a copy please click on Tadeo’s picture.

Tadeo turtle

Tadeo – It’s Me!


If you decide to use PayPal you can also choose to use a credit card instead.

How to Pray for Our Children

We have the privilege to have a new guest poster today. Kathie Morrissey writes on her blog Character Corner. She is a stay-at-home mom of 8 wonderful kids, and has been homeschooling for 27 years. 

How to Pray for Our Children

by Kathie Morrissey (reprinted in part with permission)


I still remember a particularly “bad” day I had with the kids when they were younger.  It was just ONE OF THOSE DAYS!  It seemed as though the kids were out to break every rule, and they had forgotten everything I’d been trying to teach them.  It felt as though all I did that day was correct and discipline.  (If you have several young children, I’m sure you can relate to this!)

By supper time I was feeling tired, frustrated, and discouraged.  I questioned whether all my efforts to teach and train them made any difference.  It sure didn’t seem to be helping.

As these thoughts flooded my mind, the Lord quietly reminded me of two things.

      • First, those negative thoughts were false and were coming from the devil.
      • Second, all through the day with all of the frustration, I never took the time to pray and ask God for His help!

My efforts were failing, because I forgot to seek His help.

Usually I pray for the kids first thing in the morning, and ask God for His wisdom as I begin the day.  When I forget, I can tell.

Prayer does make a difference! (tweet this)

My husband drives a truck for work, and in that time alone he has made it a practice to pray for each of the kids, and for me.  Sometimes (after ‘one of those days’) when he comes home I will ask him, “Did you forget to pray for us today?”  When he replies yes, I’m not surprised.  I can tell the difference.  Other times he asks me how the day went and I tell him things went well – the kids were good, etc.  This time he’s not surprised, because he had been praying for us.

It’s surprising how often we talk about prayer,
yet how easily we forget to use it when in need. (tweet this)

(And we’re always in need of God’s power!) Regardless of how much effort we put into teaching and training our children, without prayer we won’t see the results we desire.

God takes what we do, and uses it in our kids’ lives to produce fruit.
(tweet this)

  Unless the Lord builds the house,
the builders labor in vain (Psalm 127:1, NIV)

How or what should we pray for our kids?

Do you get stuck after, “God bless Junior”?  If so, here are a few ideas of things to include as you pray for them:

To find out our Kathie’s ideas of how to pray for children please go to Character Corner.