Newsletter
Sign-Up
Newsletter
Archives
Resource
Exhibit Hall
Articles
How To Advertise
Reprint Request
Upcoming Topics/
Article Submision
Plan of Salvation
Bible Reading
Schedule
Support Group
Services
Link to Us

Copyright 2002
The Teaching Home
Box 20219
Portland OR 97294
Fax: 503-253-7345
Phone: 503-253-9633
  tth@teachinghome.com  

Site Developed by
KARMAN Graphics and Design


    

For 30 Years The Teaching Home Has Been Providing Home-School Families
Information, Inspiration, and Encouragement from a Distinctively Christian Perspective.

Co-Editors: Veteran Home-School Sisters, Sue Welch and Cindy Short





Behold
the Great Creator Makes

by Thom­as Pes­tel

Behold the great Creator makes
Himself a house of clay,

A robe of virgin flesh He takes
Which He will wear for ay.


Hark, hark, the wise eternal Word,
Like a weak infant cries!

In form of servant is the Lord,
And God in cradles lies.


This wonder struck the world amazed,
It shook the starry frame;

Squadrons of spirits stood and gazed,
Then down in troops they came.


Glad shepherds ran to view this sight;
A choir of angels sings,

And eastern sages with delight
Adore this King of kings.


Join then, all hearts that are not stone,
And all our voices prove,

To celebrate this holy One
The God of peace and love.


See word and music online.




Teaching the Character Quality of Generosity

Generosity is part of a group of character qualities included in the broader category of love.

"We love, because he first loved us" (1 John 4:19).

Explain to your children that we give gifts at Christmas to show our love for others, just as "God so loved the world and gave his only begotten Son."


Look at Why We
Should Be Generous

 •  Because God has been generous to us (Eph. 3:19-20).

 •  Because God tells us to (Luke 6:30, 38; Romans 12:8, 13; Eph. 4:28; Isa. 58:10-11; II Cor. 9:7).

 •  Because we are stewards of what He has given to us.

Study the characteristics of love and generosity and what God says about them:


Love

Wanting and doing the best for another, expecting nothing in return.  Also: compassion, affection, concern, caring, empathy, encouraging.

See I Cor. 13; I John 3:17-18; Romans 12:9-10; John 15:12-13; Phil. 2:1-4.


Generosity

Gladly and unselfishly giving self, time, talents, money, and possessions.  Also: sharing.

See II Cor. 9:7; I Tim. 6:18; II Cor. 8:1-5; Heb. 13:16; I Tim. 6:18.


Find Out What God
Says about Giving

Read and study Bible passages that encourage Christian generosity.  Start with the following.


__ Deut. 16:17
__ 1 Chron. 29:11-17
__ Prov. 11:24-25; 22:9
__ Matt. 25:35-40
__ Luke 6:38
__ Acts 20:35
__ Rom. 12:13
__ 2 Cor. 8:2-21; 9:5-15
__ Gal. 6:6
__ Heb. 6:10; 13:16
__ 1 Tim. 6:17-19
__ I John 3:17

Discuss What
We Should Give

 •  We must thoughtfully consider the needs of others in order to meet those needs in a practical manner.

 •  We can be generous regardless of our financial situation and our ability to purchase gifts – we have much that we can give: time, attention, conversation, work, service, etc.

 •  When you give to those in need, do it in the name of the Lord so that He gets the glory and others are pointed to Him.




Free Christmas E-books
and Unit Studies

Christmas Planners

Christmas Planner

"Tips for Organizing & Simplifying Your Way to the Christmas You've Always Dreamed Of" includes budget, scheduling, gifts, shopping, traditions, cards, decorating, baking, charity, plus printables.  24-pages.
•  Free pdf e-book.


December 2010 Homeschool/Family Planner

22 pages of printable forms.
•  Free pdf e-book.



Christmas Unit Studies

A Blessed Christmas Unit Study

This unit study is about the symbols of Christmas – each one pointing to the Lord Jesus Christ. The entire focus is on Christ, His character, our service to Him, and our opportunity to spread His light to others.  This 24-day study has been expanded with many activities.  49-pages.
•  Free pdf e-book.
•  Free online html version.
•  Free original, short (non-expanded) html version.


The Names of Jesus Unit Study

Each of 24 days you will study one of the Names of Jesus.  Includes Bible and character study, learning activities, a Christmas Journal, and more.
•  Free 149-page expanded version in .doc format.
•  Free original, short (non-expanded) html version.


Good Christian Men Rejoice!

This unit is a study of 15 Christmas carols and hymns with learning activities.
•  Free html version.


Christmas Around the World

Information, activities, recipes, coloring pages, etc.  Includes Japan, Australia, Egypt, England, Germany, Sweden, Norway, Mexico, Spain, Ireland, and Colonial America.  Not overtly Christian, but nothing objectionable.  46 pages.
•  Free pdf e-book.


Christmas Unit Studies

This index page links to many possibilities to include in your Christmas unit study, including links to resources, lapbooking units, coloring pages, learning activities, complete unit studies, and more.  Not overtly Christian.
•  Free online html version.
•  Christmas Unit Study - Bible.



Christmas Activities

Christmas Worksheets

Crossword puzzles, word search, etc. based on Luke 2:1-20.  Includes answer key.
41 pages.
•  Free pdf e-book.


Annie's Christmas Welcome Page

On this page you will find all my different Christmas pages listed.  Annie's Holiday Pages are written from a Christian Perspective!
•  www.annieshomepage.com




Resource E-Mails

Do you like Special Offers and learning about new and useful resources for your home school?

Then you will want to check out the Resource E-Mails that come to your mail box!

These free newsletters are made possible by the fine suppliers who advertise in them and the Resource E-Mails.




Don't Miss a Newsletter!

We trust that you find this newsletter informative and encouraging.

•  See our archives of more than 200 newsletters online.

•  To change your e-mail address, follow the “Update Profile / E-mail Address” link at the end of this e-mail.

•  Add our e-mail address publisher@teachinghome.com to your address book, contact list, or safe list.

•  If this issue has been forwarded to you, sign up to receive your own free subscription.

Your e-mail address will never be sold or given to anyone, ever!




HSLDA

Home School Legal Defense Association offers home- schooling families a low-cost method of obtaining quality legal defense that gives them the freedom to homeschool without having to face legal threats alone.

(Use discount group number 299142 for $20 off your membership fee.)




Always-Relevant
Teaching Home
Back Issues



Fifty-one Back Issues
are offered for sale online.

The information, inspiration, and encouragement packed into each back issue never goes out of date.  They are always relevant, applicable to your needs today.
Order securely online.




Sunnyside Up



A Matter of Perspective

When our daughters were little (about 2-1/2), the first time they saw Santa Clause the same response came out of their mouths, "Look Mommy, it's Noah!"

Submitted by Joy K., California

Send your humorous anecdote to publisher@teachinghome.com.




God's Plan
of Salvation

1.  God loves you.

For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish, but have eternal life. (John 3:16)

2.  Man was separated from God by sin.

For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God. (Romans 3:23) For the wages of sin is death. (Romans 6:23)

3.  The death of Jesus Christ in our place is God's only provision for man's sin.

He (Jesus Christ) was delivered over to death for our sins and was raised to life for our justification. (Romans 4:25)

4.  We must personally receive Jesus Christ as our Savior and Lord.

But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, even to those who believe in His name. (John 1:12)

For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; not as a result of works, that no one should boast. (Ephesians 2:8, 9)




God's Word

Immerse your family in God's truth through systematic reading and study of God's Word.


The Teaching Home's
Unique Bible Reading Schedule


Features include:
•  Start any month.
•  Read 6 days a week
   (allows for church on Sunday).
•  Read 4 weeks per month
   (24 days per month).

Online at TeachingHome.com.

Listen to the Bible Online.  Choose from six English versions (plus Spanish and other languages) at BibleGateway.com/Audio.

Search God's Word at BibleGateway.com.  Options include Passage Lookup, Keyword Search, and Topical Index.






Christian Music Online 24/7!

Listen to beautiful traditional, sacred, and inspirational conservative Christian music (commercial free!) when you tune in to these online stations:

 •  Old Christian Radio

 •  Abiding Radio




Free Reprints

We encourage you to share our e-mail newsletters in the following ways:

1.  Newsletter.  Forward the entire newsletter to your friends and support group.

2.  Articles.  Reprint articles in an e-mail or print publication.

3.  The Internet.  Articles may be posted on the Internet by observing the copyright policies below and including an active link to our website: www.TeachingHome.com.

Please observe the following copyright policies when you reprint our material:

 •  Editing.  Reprint articles unedited and in their entirety.

 •  Byline.  Include "by Cindy Short and Sue Welch," unless another author is listed.

 •  Copyright Notice and Link.  Add: "Copyright 2010 (or year published) by www.TeachingHome.com. Reprinted by permission."




Send Your Newsletter
by Constant Contact!


The Teaching Home uses and heartily recommends Constant Contact!

Constant Contact is a web-based e-mail service that is inexpensive and easy to use.

Constant Contact also complies with e-mail laws, is approved as a bulk mailer, provides list hosting and management, and gets higher e-mail deliverability.

For information about how you can use this service to send out your newsletter and receive a Free 60-day Trial, please use our affiliate link to go to www.constantcontact.com.

|

 •  Invite a Friend!  Encourage your friends and support group to sign up to receive this free newsletter.

 •  Use the content of this newsletter.  See "Free Reprint" information below.

 •  See something underlined in blue type?  Click it to find more information and/or free resources.


 In This Issue 

Preparing for Christmas

1.   Is Christmas a Pagan Holiday?
2.   Proclaiming the Good News
3.   Giving To Meet Needs
4.   Affecting Our Culture


 Sidebar 

•  Teaching the Character Quality of Generosity
•  Free Christmas E-books and Unit Studies


 Upcoming Issue 

Christmas Bible Study:  Devotionals and Activities

 Recommended Resources 

•  Keepers of the Faith: Gems of Christian Literature
•  Colonial Williamsburg Retreat: for Homeschoolers
•  Gospel for Asia: Gifts That Can Transform Lives

Greetings,

In this issue we offer suggestions for your family as you prepare for Christmas.

Regardless of objectionable practices of past and present Christmas observances, Christian families can focus on the true reason for the celebration – God's love in sending us a Savior!

This is an opportunity to teach spiritual truths to our children and to share the same Good News to our world today that the angels proclaimed 2,000 years ago.


"This is how God showed his love among us:
     He has sent His one and only Son into the world
     that we might live through Him.

In this is love: not that we loved God,
     but that He loved us
and sent His Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins."
     (1 John 4:9-10)

May the Lord bless you and your family for His glory.


Cordially,

     The Pat Welch Family, Publishers
     Pat, Sue, Heather, Holly, and Brian

The Teaching Home is a home-school, family-run business operated in our home since 1980.


The Gems of Christian Literature
on Sale Now!


    Are you looking for the absolute best in Christian literature?

    We have sifted through hundreds of old books to seek out the very best gems for you and your family to enjoy!

    These stories honor the Lord, edify families, and provide examples of Christian character for children.

Save Now!  Receive $1 off each already-low-priced book!

Keepers of the Faith

See the Reviews and Order Securely Online at
www.keepersofthefaith.com.   906-663-6881

Happy Reading!


1.  Is Christmas a Pagan Holiday?

By no means!  Christmas is the primary Christian holiday celebrating the birth of Jesus Christ the Lord.

However, there is no indication that Christ was born on December 25, and there is no instruction or example in Scripture of celebrating His birth.  Further, the celebration of Christmas did originate from a pagan winter festival and various customs centuries ago.

Yet today the content of Christmas is a celebration of the birth of Jesus Christ the Lord.  The old pagan roots of Christmas are no longer remembered or associated with Christians' observance of this day.

Christmas provides a unique opportunity for Christians to proclaim to the world the good news that a Savior has come – Jesus Christ the Lord!

Adapted from "Isn't Easter a pagan holiday?"


Was Christmas Once a Pagan Holiday?

Article by Bodie Hodge, Answers in Genesis

"This is a common, but good question – especially around this time of year – and the answer is much deeper than most realize," says Hodge.

In his article, he goes on to discuss in detail the possible origins of Greek mythology, the Scriptures and the Jewish calendar, and concludes:

"To clarify some points though, we, nor other Christians, do not 'worship' a pagan holiday or any holiday.  We worship God on the day that is set aside as Christmas.  We take time to remember (not worship) the birth of Christ on that day.

"Whether Christmas happens to occur at the same time (or close to the same time) as a pagan holiday is irrelevant.  There is nothing inherently wrong with celebrating a Christian holiday at the same time the pagans celebrate.

"The Church has often failed during Christmas-time because we simply talk about the birth of Christ without talking about why He came.

"What is important is that we understand the implication of the omnipotent Son of God leaving His heavenly throne to empty Himself!

"Why would the Creator of the universe choose to do this, knowing he would be raised by sinful parents in a sinful world to be rejected and to die a horrible death?

"Unbelievable as it is, it was to pay the penalty for the sin of humankind (Romans 3:23; 6:23) so that we, undeserving, hateful sinners-doomed to die, could instead live with Him in paradise for eternity.

"Now, that is worth celebrating!

Find out more about this wonderful gift.
Read the entire article on the AiG website.
Sign up for Answers in Genesis free e-mail newsletters.



Give Your Family a Christmas Gift
That Will Make Memories to Last a Lifetime!

Christian Family Retreat - Williamsburg, Virginia

Sponsored by MOMYS (Mothers of Many Young Siblings)

Explore history of founding fathers.
Experience our Christian Heritage
   with living history studies.
Make memories; deepen family ties.
Fellowship with like-minded families.
Build lasting friendships.

3 Weeks to Choose from:
March 6-13, 13-20, 20-27, 2011


Spacious, comfortable, private accommodations.  Package affordably priced as a ministry to Christian homeschoolers.

Details & Registration at www.WilliamsburgRetreat.com

Williamsburg Retreat
Box 7665 Columbia MO 65205  /  573-673-3301


2.  Proclaiming the Good News

At Christmas time, it is appropriate to include a witness for Christ in our greetings to extended family, neighbors, and co-workers in keeping with the holiday.  We have a ready-made opportunity to explain the Good News of the Gospel.

Your presentation of the good news of God's gift may take many forms:


1.  Hand Out Gospel Tracts

These tracts use Scripture to show that Jesus came to die for man's sin and invite readers to accept Him.


 •  The True Meaning of Christmas
 •  Christmas Blessings to You
 •  The Gift
 •  Wise Men Still Seek Him.  Also in Spanish
 •  More Christmas Tracts

 •  Pocket Testament League offers low-priced copies of the Gospel of John with different cover designs, various translations, several languages, and all contain the plan of salvation and an opportunity to sign up for a free correspondence course.  1-800-636-8785

"The best gift you can give is the gift of God's promise of eternal life through faith in Christ.  And God's Word explains it better than human words can.

"Giving a Gospel of John is the easiest way possible to share your faith at a time of year when so many people are open to the message of God's love and forgiveness."  –Pocket Testament League.


2.  Include the Gospel
     in Your Cards and Letters

 •  Send cards with a biblical message and/or Bible verse, write out a verse such as John 3:16, or include Christmas tracts with all your Christmas cards.

 •  If you mail or e-mail an annual family letter, include a personal testimony of the Lord's working in your life, your gratefulness for His salvation, and a Bible verse.


3.  e-Cards & Online

If you send e-cards (Crosscards, Dayspring, etc.) or if you have a website or other online presence (such as Facebook), you can include a message and/or link to the Gospel, such as:

 •  Scripture:

"The gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord." (Romans 6:23)

"To all who received Him, to those who believed in His name, He gave the right to become children of God." (John 1:12)

 •  Links to online information and video:

"Have you accepted the most precious gift anyone could ever give you?  Read more." (link to http://christiananswers.net/godstory/prayer1.html)

"Watch a free on-line video which clearly explains how Jesus Christ was born and why – starting at the very beginning, at the dawn of Creation.  Watch The Hope, an 80-minute video." (link to
http://christiananswers.net/hope/home.html)


4.  Give Christmas Goodies
     Plus a Gospel Message

Prepare a plate of goodies for your neighbors, friends, and/or family and include a Christmas tract, a Scripture portion (see above), or an audio tape or CD of a book of the Bible.


5.  Go Christmas Caroling

Everyone loves to hear the familiar Christmas carols.

 •  Go caroling in your neighborhood, in a hospital or nursing home, or to shut-ins from your church.

 •  Go as a family or with another family or group.

 •  Include your testimony in just a couple of sentences between songs, briefly speak of the gospel message in the songs, and/or pass out Christmas tracts.

 •  Print 4-page Booklet of 14 Christmas carols to take with you caroling, or Carols by Candlelight, a Gospel message with words for carols.





Watch video online.

  Gifts That Can Transform Lives  


     This year, give to the Lord while touching the outcasts and the needy – bringing to them the Good News of the Savior whose birth we celebrate.

     Through the Gospel for Asia Christmas Gift Catalog you can give a family in South Asia the chance for a better life by selecting and sending them a gift.

     Your gift will make a difference in their lives – not only materially, but spiritually as well!  Every gift is given in the name of Jesus, and the recipients are eager to learn of the love that generated such a caring act of kindness.

Gospel for Asia

Celebrating Christ.  Transforming Lives.


3.  Giving To Meet Needs

Christmas is a time of giving, modeled on God's great gift to us. Teach your family how giving pleases the Lord.


1.  Developing the Character Quality
     of Generosity

 •  Model a free and happy generosity.

 •  Teach your child to be thoughtful of those in need and understand how to meet their needs.

 •  See "Teaching the Character Quality of Generosity" in the sidebar at left.


2.  God's Gift List

 Talk to your family about those God told us to give to: prisoners; widows and orphans; our "neighbors"; the poor, handicapped, hungry, thirsty, or sick; strangers, those in need of clothing, and those that cannot return our gifts.  (See James 1:27; Luke 14:12-14; Matthew 25:35, 36.)

"Let us not love with word or with tongue, but in deed and truth." (1 John 3:1)


3.  Types of Gifts

Discuss ways to meet the different needs of people.

 •  Some need material things. Give food, clothes, or money for housing, utilities, or transportation to a needy family or individual.

 •  Some need friendship, companionship, time, or service. Make a short visit to a nursing home, take a meal or a "tea party" to a shut-in from your church, or help serve a meal at a rescue mission.


4.  How To Reach the Needy

There are several ways that you may become aware of the needs of others and give to them.

 •  You may know someone to give to directly. This may be extended family, neighbors, friends, or acquaintances.  (See the story of the Good Samaritan in Luke 10:30-37.)

 •  You may give through your local church, an example given to us in Scripture.  (See Acts 6:1-7.)

 •  You may give through an organization that ministers in parts of the world with which you would not come into contact, such as:

Gospel for Asia offers you the opportunity to give the Gospel as well as a practical gift to meet urgent needs of Dalit ("Untouchable") families, showing them a tangible expression of God's life-changing love.

Gospel Rescue Missions present the Gospel, as well as provide emergency food and shelter, youth and family services, rehabilitation programs for the addicted, education and job training programs, and assistance to the elderly, poor, and at-risk youth.  See a directory of missions and "Eight Ways to Truly Help the Homeless" (including precautions for your family's safety).

Home School Foundation helps needy homeschooling families through hard times, including their Widows Fund.

"He who is generous will be blessed, For he gives some of his food to the poor."  (Proverbs 22:9)


5.  Practice Hospitality

Hospitality is a gift that money cannot buy, and it is something that God tells us to give to others (Romans 12:13).  You do not need to do an elaborate dinner or party.

 •  Ask a neighbor in for tea.

 •  Do not wait until your house looks "perfect" to practice hospitality.


6.  Always Include the Best Gift

 •  True love will offer the best gift, the Good News of salvation, along with any gift that ministers to physical needs (Acts 3:6).

 •  Give in the name of the Lord so that He gets the glory and others are pointed to Him.



4.  Affecting Our Culture

Christians' celebration a Christ-centered Christmas is a testimony to all around us and can have an impact in the culture warfare today.

Many do not recognize the extent of Christian influence on our nation's founding, giving us a rich Christian heritage, or the majority of our population that are at least nominally Christian.

For example, The Barna Group did a nationwide survey that revealed that "most American adults believe that the stories they read in the Bible can be taken as literal truth" and that "Three out of four adults (75%) said that they believe Jesus Christ was born to a virgin, Mary, as described in the gospel narratives."

Some Christian organizations are working to keep the Christian emphasis in our public celebration of Christmas in various ways, such as:


The Nativity Display

Bruce Barilla furnishes information on right to display the Nativity scene on public property at nativityhelp.org

As Christmas nears, Barna (see above) pointed out that the large majority who believe in the virgin birth coincides with the fact that few Americans are offended by public displays that remind people of the meaning of Christmas and the importance of the celebration.


The Use of "Christmas" in the Marketplace

Liberty Counsel founder Mat Staver has launched the seventh annual campaign to determine what stores want to take "Christ" out of Christmas.

Liberty Counsel's website has provided a list for consumers, so people know where to patronize when they go Christmas shopping. "The 'Friend or Foe Campaign' is designed to make sure that Christmas does not get secularized or censored from its essence, namely the birth of Jesus Christ," says Staver.

Liberty Counsel is also offering a "Help Save Christmas" action pack designed to help show that it is legal to celebrate Christmas.

Also see American Family Association's list of top retailers and how they recognize Christmas.










Copyright  2010  The Teaching Home

Please help us make this newsletter better by letting us know what we are doing correctly, where we need to improve, and topics you would like addressed.  E-mail us today.







spacer
 




About The Teaching Home | Getting Started | Resource Directory
State & National Organizations | Magazine Supplements
Support Group Services