The saying “it takes a village to raise a child” is true in so many different ways. I value certain other people’s input and influence on my children’s lives and seek out opportunities for my children that I know will cause them to grow and develop in all areas of their life. I have listed in this blog post a number of opportunities that are coming up in Melbourne, Australia over the next 2 months to help your children grow in their spiritual life.
48 HOP (48 Hours of prayer). Our church, Stairway, holds an annual 48 hours of prayer which is a fantastic time to help you and your children encounter God in fresh and relevant ways. This year, the theme is on “An audience with the King”. It starts at 4pm on Thursday 26th February and goes until 4pm Saturday 28th February. There is a special family prayer time starting with afternoon tea at 4pm Thursday. I would highly recommend this to all families throughout Melbourne. Come when you can. Stay as long as your children can cope with it. Our family usually goes back a number of times throughout the 48 hours, especially as we drop schoolwork on the Friday and just spend the time at 48HOP. We would usually spend over 12 hours at it in segments of about 2 hours and my children come home with a huge number of pictures they have drawn, Bible verses, bits of creative giveaways and many stories about how God has spoken to them and showed them things. There are usually a number of creative stations set up around the main auditorium. It is a free event. My children eagerly desire this time and love the creativity and ability to hear from God in new ways. I love the time set aside to focus on God plus the fresh ideas I glean each year.
“Shifting Atmospheres” by Dawna De Silva. If there is one event you don’t want to miss this year, then this is it. Hearing Dawna, from Bethel Church, explain about spiritual atmospheres and how to shift/change them, is powerful. The session is on Thursday 9th April at 7.30pm at Stairway Church. It is a free event and a love offering will be taken. Our family heard her podcast several years ago and immediately put it into action. I will never forget the look on my daughter’s face as she noticed the change as I prayed quietly but audibly saying, “Spirit of negativity I see you and choose not to partner with you. Instead we release a spirit of joy and positivity”. The extremely negative person opposite us immediately changed her perspective and started speaking positively. My daughter was shocked at the sudden change in this person and how this simple prayer worked miraculously. We will be taking the children to hear Dawna as well as it is such an important tool for them to learn and have re-inforced in their life.
Deeper Kids – Stairway Church runs a “Deeper” Conference each year and this year they have added a special time for the teenagers on the Friday night and the children on the Saturday. Cost for the all day Saturday event for the kids is $12. A fantastic time for your children to encounter God in fresh ways. More information on the website at www.stairway.org.au
Healing Rooms – Stairway Church runs a Saturday morning “Healing Rooms” on a monthly basis and we have commenced a special time for children with autism and learning difficulties. We are seeing amazing results over time with the children who are brought along regularly to be prayed for. If you know someone who has a child with learning issues etc, then please feel free to encourage them to come along. The next 2 mornings are Saturday 28th March and Saturday 18th April.
I encourage you to seek out opportunities to expose your children to learning new things and new ways of connecting with God in safe environments.