Archive for the ‘Olympics’ Category.

Parenting with Scripture: Olympic Style – 2014

We Durbins are not a normal sports family.  Instead of the typical team sports, my daughter takes mounted archery (archery on horseback) and my son is obsessed with Karate.  He considered a two hour flag football clinic as having “played football.”  Why would he need to join a team?  He explained he had already “done” that sport!  We usually only watch championship games on TV, if that, and I don’t even know what station number ESPN is!   Gasp!  I know this would be sacrilege to many families. 

However, we are NUTS when it comes to the Olympics!  Our calendars have been blocked off for those two weeks (Feb. 7 – Feb. 23) for months to make sure we don’t schedule anything extra so we can enjoy as much viewing time as possible!  As the media hype mounts, Tim has been frequently reading us articles and tidbits of info to prep us for who’s who of the different events. 

Since we will be spending our evenings with the Olympics as a constant, we plan on incorporating it into our evening family devotional times.  Each day, we will pick an event to focus on and watch to see which country wins.  We won’t repeat a country.  So, as the days pass, we’ll go down the ranking until we reach a new one.  Then, we’ll find the country on the globe or map, look up facts about the country, and pray for the people there.  We will be using this awesome resource, but Google works as well. 

For more Parenting with Scripture Olympic themed ideas, click on the following link for past blogs on the subject:

Instead of sharing one related verse, I thought I’d pass along this list of verses about “all nations”:


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More Olympic Style Parenting with Scripture

The Olympic track events made me think of Hebrews 12:1-3 (passage written out below ideas).

Make this Scripture come alive by:
Watching, Memorizing, and Acting – Your child(ren) might enjoy watching these kids act out Hebrews 12:1-2.
Discussing – Refer to the first paragraph on this list to help you know how to introduce the passage and discuss it with your child.
Drawing If you have a child who enjoys drawing, verse 1 would be an interesting one to illustrate after discussing the meaning.
Playing Use the link above from “Discussing” and play the game idea.  Even though it’s written for a Sunday School lesson it can still be used with 1 or more children.  My family simplified the idea and just had the kids run through the house carrying ten pound weights and then running without them.  It was a great kinesthetic way to help make the point of the passage!
Listening/Singing – I can’t think about this passage without remembering a song I heard many times as a child.  One of my home church pastors wrote this and a friend from that same church has resurrected it with a recording.  The Runner’s Song, by John Kramp – recorded by Chris McNeill –  (Available soon on iTunes.)

I’ve listed the NIV version of Hebrews 12:1-3 first.  This would be a great family memory verse for the week.   And,  I’ve also included the extended version from The Message.  I love how The Message shakes up the wording.   For older children, verses 4-13 could be the basis for a rich conversation about discipline.   It can be related back to Olympic running and what athletes must do to train hard.

Hebrews 12: 1-3, NIV
Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us. 2 Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. 3 Consider him who endured such opposition from sinful men, so that you will not grow weary   and lose heart.

Hebrews 12:1-13, The Message
Do you see what this means—all these pioneers who blazed the way, all these veterans cheering us on? It means we’d better get on with it. Strip down, start running—and never quit! No extra spiritual fat, no parasitic sins. Keep your eyes on Jesus, who both began and finished this race we’re in. Study how he did it. Because he never lost sight of where he was headed—that exhilarating finish in and with God—he could put up with anything along the way: Cross, shame, whatever. And now he’s there, in the place of honor, right alongside God. When you find yourselves flagging in your faith, go over that story again, item by item, that long litany of hostility he plowed through. That will shoot adrenaline into your souls!

4-11In this all-out match against sin, others have suffered far worse than you, to say nothing of what Jesus went through—all that bloodshed! So don’t feel sorry for yourselves. Or have you forgotten how good parents treat children, and that God regards you as his children? My dear child, don’t shrug off God’s discipline, but don’t be crushed by it either.    It’s the child he loves that he disciplines;  the child he embraces, he also corrects. God is educating you; that’s why you must never drop out. He’s treating you as dear children. This trouble you’re in isn’t punishment; it’s training, the normal experience of children. Only irresponsible parents leave children to fend for themselves. Would you prefer an irresponsible God? We respect our own parents for training and not spoiling us, so why not embrace God’s training so we can truly live? While we were children, our parents did what seemed best to them. But God is doing what is best for us, training us to live God’s holy best. At the time, discipline isn’t much fun. It always feels like it’s going against the grain. Later, of course, it pays off handsomely, for it’s the well-trained who find themselves mature in their relationship with God.

12-13So don’t sit around on your hands! No more dragging your feet! Clear the path for long-distance runners so no one will trip and fall, so no one will step in a hole and sprain an ankle. Help each other out. And run for it!

Don’t forget to exercise your faith in the Olympics of life!


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Parenting with Scripture…Olympic Style

Happy Olympic days, y’all!
Here’s a related passage to discuss as a family some time during these couple of weeks, followed by some fun and kid-friendly Olympic resources:

1 Corinthians 9:24-27 – The Message

You’ve all been to the stadium and seen the athletes race. Everyone runs; one wins. Run to win. All good athletes train hard. They do it for a gold medal that tarnishes and fades. You’re after one that’s gold eternally.

I don’t know about you, but I’m running hard for the finish line. I’m giving it everything I’ve got. No sloppy living for me! I’m staying alert and in top condition. I’m not going to get caught napping, telling everyone else all about it and then missing out myself.

Olympic website that my children have been enjoying –

Olympic crafts, games, and snacks:
This British site has creative ideas that young and old would enjoy.  I’m sure ideas are endless if you do a quick Google or Pinterest search.

Olympics 2012 Lapbook:
This is only 50 cents to download.  However, have your printer ready b/c it’s around 60 pages to print.  My kids are going into 2nd and 4th grade and it has been a fabulous boredom buster as we’ve headed into the Olympics.  My prayer was that they would not think it’s too “schoolish” and God blessed!  They are having a blast with it and beg to do more each time we sit down with them.  We’re all learning many interesting facts as they create this fun keepsake!  If you’ve never done a lapbook, don’t let this overwhelm you.  The step-by-step instructions that come with the download are excellent.  It also shows pictures for each step.  There’s still two weeks left of the Olympics…plenty of time to spread this project out over the days if you think your children would be interested.


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Cousin Olympics

There are 7 cousins in my kids’ generation level on my side of the family, ranging from age 8-22.  I count it as a tremendous blessing that I am close with all of them and they adore each other!  But that doesn’t come without effort.  Some of our best memories involved some prep work, but have proved immeasurably worth it in terms of family bonding.   There is no specific tie-in to “parenting with Scripture” here except to say that I’m thankful to be an aunt to these 5 amazing kids/young adults and take seriously the opportunity to pray often for them, engage them wherever there are in life, be available to them, create memory makers like Cousin Olympics, and love them no matter what!

So, what exactly is Cousin Olympics?  Every two years near the time of summer or winter Olympics, we plan our own crazy version called Cousin Olympics!  We started this before the youngest cousin was even born and it’s a hoot to go back and look at pictures and videos of the kiddos through the years.  They love laughing at whatever they were wearing, hair styles, etc. from the old photos!

Pictures speak louder than words so I’ll explain along with each snapshot…

The rings, podium, medals, and cupcakes were ideas from Family Fun Magazine.
My daughter (almost 10) made the score board.  Great hands-on activity for using rulers and math to figure out spacing for the chart.
The torch is just a white piece of cardstock rolled into a cone with flame colored tissue paper tucked inside (tape to secure).


We made our medals out of clay rather than the paper plate Family Fun version.

These came from either Family Fun or Pinterest.
Though these did produce some fabulous Kodak moments, I’ll spare all the cousins the Internet embarrassment!
Ping Pong Precision Pitch –
Cheezy Toss –
Freestyle Shake-a-thon –
Stumps Tug-of-War –
Shake That Head and M&M Smiley Face –
This Blows With Straws/Balloons –

Scoring was tricky because the older four have a much easier time at most activities than the younger three kids.  One of our math-minded family members figured out a way to give a “handicap” and we ended up perfectly with the younger three getting the gold, silver, bronze, and the older four getting gold, silver, and a tie for bronze.  One of the teens pulled up the Olympic theme song on her iPod and had it playing while they took their places on the podium for pictures!  Yes, this is totally cheezy for the older ones but they still are great sports about it because it’s part of our family tradition.  After our evening ended, I love that a couple of them posted on Facebook, “You never outgrow Cousin Olympics!”

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