When I was younger, I loved being part of reading programs. I would stay up all night under the covers with a flashlight, reading some of my favorite books until my parents would come in and tell me to go to bed. Once I started growing up, my love of reading books for pleasure was replaced with the necessity of reading books for my education. But a love for reading should be in every child’s—and every adult’s—heart. Why not pledge to read more this year with the CPH Reads program? In fact, I have five great reasons why you and your family should join this new reading adventure.
My parents are two of the most supportive people in my life. When I told them I was moving to St. Louis for a job, they immediately helped me find a relative to live with temporarily, packed up my car, and gave me some gas money to drive all the way down. They check in on me weekly (if not daily) and have been incredibly supportive of my personal and professional endeavors.
I’m not a stranger to being away from my family. Last spring, I graduated from a university in another state than my family. During my four years of study, I celebrated many holidays and birthdays with my friends only. However, the difference this year is that I will be alone for Easter. My mother is in Michigan, my father is in Indiana, and I am in St. Louis. We are all in different states for work, unable to get back to one another for Easter celebrations.
With the current pandemic, this scenario is a new and stark reality for many people. I want to be angry about having to celebrate Easter alone. But in all of this, I have co-workers who remind me that even if it seems bleak, God has a plan. And He has given us amazing and beautiful tools to connect as a family and rejoice together. Read below to find ways to stay connected with family, friends, and the Church, even when isolated from them.
I know for me the idea of not having Easter at my church is strange. Easter is always the most beautiful service: lilies lining the altar, white and gold banners everywhere, beautiful trumpet fanfares ringing throughout the sanctuary. This year, Satan has tried to put a stop to the celebrations. He would rather you stay locked inside, forgetting the Savior’s resurrection and victory on the cross! But as Christ’s Church, you can celebrate Him from anywhere. Read below to see how you can prepare and celebrate Easter at home, and download this month’s free content: coloring pages and a bookmark for Easter.
In the past few weeks, you’ve likely heard a lot of words—words such as pandemic, fear, quarantine, isolation, or even emergency. But the words you should heed the most are those of God’s Word. This is where He gives true, everlasting comfort and strength to His people. In the coming weeks, despite school closures and social distancing, cling to these five Bible verses that offer comfort and hope, even amid times of darkness. Write them on a mirror. Save them in a note on your smartphone. Or even share them on social media!
In Living with Grief, Pastor Kristian Kincaid talks about three major impacts of grief: emotional, physical, and spiritual. The impacts of grief occur when the mind and body are thrown out of what psychology calls “homeostasis,” or balance. Realistically, no one grieves in strict outlined stages or at the same pace. Grief often lingers long after losing a loved one. For believers, grief’s impacts are diminished with the comfort of Christ.
In the New Testament, Christians are often told to love our brothers and sisters in Christ. The Greek language uses different words to describe love: storge, philia, eros, and agape, to name a few. What do each of these types of love entail? How can you share them with people in your life?
Read about the different types of love below, then download some floral or woodland-themed Valentine’s Day cards with Scripture, created by Oar + Arrow— a creative team led by wife, Sherry Luhman, and husband, LCMS Pastor Ethan Luhman. Use these cards to share God’s love with parents, children, grandparents, friends and other loved ones.
Recently, I’ve been calling my friends from home, talking to them a lot about loneliness. This holiday season was my first without having my parents or close friends nearby. Although 2020 marks the start of my first full year in St. Louis, it’s also my first year being over four hundred miles away from family. My cell phone calls to Indiana and Michigan are the closest I get to genuine interactions with my loved ones as I continue to meet new people and develop deeper friendships where I am. In all of this, you could say my loneliness is a form of grief: the grief of losing what and who I grew up with.
Can you believe that another year has come and gone?! For many, the start of the new year is a great time to think about new goals for the upcoming year. However, sometimes it’s hard to create goals and stick to them. What’s the secret to setting attainable goals that last all year? How is it possible to achieve them? Read more below on how to set devotional goals and work toward them daily.
Christmas is the best time of year to share the story of Jesus’ birth with your children! No matter the age or reading level, the Christmas story can be found in many different books for kids. From beautiful, lifelike pictures to singsong rhyming patterns, there are so many wonderful options to read with your child this Christmas.