Popsicle Stick Jesus: How I learned about the Lord

Many of us had similar experiences growing up in the church. Big parking lot BBQs. Easter egg hunts. Sermons with words we couldn’t understand, but knew were important. If you were like me at all, you were a bit of a restless child. I knew church was important, but, sadly, I must admit that in my youngest years I wasn’t very interested. I think the only thing I learned from Church Sundays (at that age!) was that “Benediction” meant “Almost time to go home.”

If you read my other blog post, you know that I was a camp counselor. Well, luckily for childhood me, my mom was also one when she was a teenager. It was her idea to bring crafts into my education with Christ. I remember the first one I made. It was a simple popsicle stick cross, with colorful yarn used to wrap the two together. It looked something like this:

My mom did this because her side of my family Irish Protestant, and it reminded her of a Celtic Cross she’d seen on her honeymoon to Fermanagh, Northern Ireland. Just like this:

I remember winding the yarn tight around the cross as my mom told me about the symbol above churches, and I sheepishly thought about asking her why our church had a ‘t’ on the roof. She explained our heritage, our religion, our savior, and I understood. I finally understood.

Each week after church, my mom would have another craft for me. We’d do it together, and she’d explain the lessons as I was making a tie dye shirt for the Joseph’s dreamcoat or a lion mask for the Lion of Judah. Crafting helped me  unlock my understanding of the Bible and how it relates to our lives today. Having a physical, manual way to understand the stories helped my visual mind.

There are many ways to learn about God. This is just my story. What activities have you used to teach your children about God?

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