Dear Friends  – children, parents, and grandparents,
As we are all facing new and uncharted territory right now, we want to be an encouragement and a resource for you in these coming days and weeks.   The CoVid19 pandemic is certainly a time when we need to apply the lessons that we share during our VBS programs and throughout the year.   This is time a time for the Christian community to show our faith and to share our belief that God is near and “an ever-present help in time of trouble.” 
Below is a link to a simple lesson/activity for you and your children to read and share and do.  We think the most effective use would be for you as a family to share this story and the songs and activities.  But, you know your family and what works best….we just pray that it will be a blessing to you and that it will show the children that what we teach in Bible School is meant for real life.  This is real life with real enemies, for sure.
Our intention is to do this weekly  –  with the Lord’s inspiration, we’re trusting we can.  Your input is always appreciated….we love the synergy of ideas and creativity.   We hope you enjoy this classic story and the encouragement it should give us.
Do not be afraid!
Additional suggestions for facing this crisis in the confines of your home:
1.  There is an excellent mobile app called You Version.  This is a Bible app and it has its own Children’s Bible App as well.   Just download You Version, and you will find an incredible number of resources….more bible studies and programs than you could ever use, illustrated bible stories for children, daily power verses that pop up on your phone, one week and full-year bible studies from renowned teachers.  All of this is free  –  and the story behind the formation of this app is as incredible as the app itself….but that will be saved for another day. 
2.  Find some meaningful bible verses to post in your house; saying or singing scripture is powerful. . .powerful for us for courage and peace and a powerful way to talk to God.  Today’s lesson uses one that we loved in VBS  –  perfect for the present situation.
3.  Search for some of the children’s favorite songs from past VBS years….I just type in the title of the song and add VBS song, and usually I find it.   I’ll bet your children have favorites that they can remember.
3.  Make a Blessings Basket  or  List that you can add to with your children.  Though the challenges are incredible for so many of you, God provides us with untold blessings IF we know how to look for them.  Have each child look for at least one special blessing each day that can be recorded.  
Yesterday’s beautiful warm, spring day with flowers just starting to emerge was a huge joy for many.  Nature gives us reminders of God’s continued provision, love, and incredible imagination.  This forced “simple life” might very well help us learn to appreciate each other and the many blessings that God has for us.
4.  Know that we are here for you.  Pastor Richard and the rest of our church family want to pray for you and help you in other ways if we can.  We pray for our community; we pray for peace in our hearts and for hope; we pray for those of you who have lost incomes and  jobs; we pray for our leaders and decision makers; we pray for those on the front lines…hospital workers, EMT’s & First-Responders, all those who are putting others needs before their own safety; we pray for solutions to this modern-day plague.