Guest Post - Susan Shipe - 52 Commands of Jesus for Children & Sitting Among Friends #85

Welcome this week's Guest Post from Author Susan Shipe and stick around for this week's Sitting Among Friends Linkup.
"So, why a book for children?"
I was asked that question in 2013 when I began 52 Commands of Jesus for Children. I don't remember my answer then but now that the book is finished and on the great big bookshelf at Amazon I can clearly look back and see the "back story" of 52 Commands!
For years our pastor taught the 49 commands of Christ and the teachings impacted me with the truth and relevancy of Jesus' words spoken two thousand years ago. And, as God does, He whispered a suggestion that the teachings in the Gospels needed to be created into a book for parents to use with their children.
Yes, Lord.
I began writing with great excitement and eagerness. I was seven commands "in" and suddenly I went dry. In all honesty, I found myself intimidated writing for children. THIS IS IMPORTANT, LIFE-CHANGING material and I felt inadequate. I have written for children before - short stories based on Biblical truth and focusing on the stories 'between the lines." I've written a story on the birth of Jesus and a story about Malchus, the man who had his ear cut off! Yet the commands of Jesus, red words from the Gospels, needed to be spot on with no room for error.
I did not want to insert my own deep doctrinal beliefs, I wanted each parent or facilitator to use her or his passion to teach the command and the character quality that coincides with it. 52 Commands of Jesus for Children is a jumping off place for parents and teachers to take the children as far as they can based on the ages and maturity of the child/children being taught.
Feeling intimidated and inadequate the material was filed and shelved. Fast forward to March 2017. I had just completed 40 Days of Lent and was enjoying a few days rest from writing. I asked the Lord to show me what was next! Because He is God and always finishes what He begins He clearly told me there would be no more books until 52 Commands was completed. I rolled up my sleeves, dusted off the file folder, and opened the Word document! With much prayer, I dug in. I am so glad I did.
The words of Jesus are powerful!
Parents and teachers will be challenged by the questions and suggestions in the book - are they living and breathing examples of the character qualities? Our children reflect us, whether good or bad, they do as we do not necessarily what we say!   Each lesson includes a coloring page. Additional coloring pages can be downloaded from my blog site for those who wish to keep their book unmarked and for those with more than one child.For the word of God is alive and powerful. It is sharper than the sharpest two-edged sword, cutting between soul and spirit, between joint and marrow. It exposes our innermost thoughts and desires. Hebrews 4.12 (NLT)
Week 45 teaches the 45th command, "Watch and Pray," with the character quality endurance. About ten years ago the Holy Spirit planted this endurance word deep within my spirit - it hasn't left yet so He must have seriously meant it. What does endurance look like in 2017? Two thousand years ago in a garden of great angst, Jesus, the Son of God asked a couple of men to watch and pray with and for Him. They fell asleep. Their temptation? They were tired. O! God May I not fall asleep when the Spirit of the living God speaks deep things to me or, simply tells me to get out of bed and pray on my knees. I want to endure.
Parents and teachers will be challenged by the questions and suggestions in the book - are they living and breathing examples of the character qualities? Our children reflect us, whether good or bad, they do as we do not necessarily what we say!
Each lesson includes a coloring page. Additional coloring pages can be downloaded from my blog site for those who wish to keep their book unmarked and for those with more than one child.
The images will help paint that important picture of the character quality being taught.
I know how hard it is for families to create and sustain a quiet time with young children. I suggest beginning each devotion on a Sunday afternoon or evening. The lesson and exercises can be incorporated for one full week - think of the opportunities! Each lesson has three to five simple sections for teaching and sharing. Wouldn't it be wonderful for families to sit at the dinner table three times a week with this devotional book in the hands of the parent, each child with a box of coloring pencils and a color page, and after dinner they linger five to ten minutes with The Word and each other.
O! How pleased our heavenly Father would be!

Bio for Susan Shipe | Creston NC
I am an encourager with a heart for women. My devotion-journal, A Pruned Branch, was self-published in 2004 and is a compilation of 365 devotions for women in all walks of life.  APB is full of practical principles for all, from the baby Christian to the mature believer.

The Lord delivered a message of Hope deep within my soul in 2002. Jesus, the Hope-giver met me in my hour of need and my heart overflowed with hope – the theme of my life since that time has been HOPE!

I am the mother of three adult children, grandmother (a/k/a Mimzy) to 20-year old Hannah and 14-year old Simon, and I am the wife of one man and together we share our love with one awesome dog, Sam! My husband, Lowell, and I attend Community Church in Mountain City, Tennessee. I enjoy writing, reading, organic gardening, traveling, and spending time with our family.

I love the Lord with every fiber of my being and my life’s purpose is: That I may walk worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing Him, being fruitful in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God. Colossians 1:10 (NKJV) My life vision is: I have no greater joy than to hear that my children walk in Truth. 3 John 4

My heart overflows with a good theme…my tongue is the pen of a ready writer. Psalms

 45:1 (NASB)

Thank you for joining me today. You can find more of Susan's work at her blog page. Hope Heart Home.  

I am glad you are here. I would love for you to join us at Seeking God Daily. Because a couple friends and I are passionate about sharing God’s Word we have joined forces to bring together a Facebook Group called Seeking God Daily.

Seeking God Daily is a group that offers hope, encouragement, and support in learning God's Word and applying the truths to our walk with Christ. 

We want to encourage one another through authentic, honest and respectful conversation as we earnestly seek God daily.

Hebrews 11:6 And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him.

We're doing life together so come and join in the conversations. You can join this group by clicking HERE! While you are there feel free to invite some friends along for the journey. We would love to have them!

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  1. What a delight to come over to linkup this morning and see 52 Commands of Jesus for Children! I had forgotten it went live this morning! Thank you, Jaime, for the opportunity. Will you do me a favor and fix one little typo? Here: the Son of God asked a couple of me to watch and pray - me should be men!!! Thanks so much. xoxo

    1. Thank you so much for guest posting here! I am sure your book will absolutely bless so many families. Sorry it took me a few days to fix the post, I was on vacation and had very sparse connections and couldn't get into it. Thanks again for joining me this week, Susan!

  2. Yay, Susan, delighted to see you here. I look forward to your words on my site! I can't wait to dig into your Bible study with my 4yo. :)

    1. Yes, now to think of something new to say about 52!!!

  3. What a great testimony, Susan! God will bless your obedience and endurance through this book! Looking forward to sharing it with my friends who have children. Have a blessed week!

    1. June, it is available on Amazon and I would greatly appreciate your support and promotion!!!

  4. I love your bio, Susan - an encourager with a heart for women. Sounds like a mentor to me. Just sayin'.

    1. Can you relate to "broken record"????? LOL LOL LOL

  5. This book looks great Susan! I love your perseverance and the story about how God brought the book to fruition!

    1. I believe God was far more persistent than I was!!! But it did get done! Thanks Julie.

  6. I'm slipping out of my blog break for a minute to say THANK YOU for being obedient to the Call of Jesus, Susan! I have been so blessed by the words He has given you to share!

    1. Bettie...first, I have missed seeing you friend and THANK YOU for such kind and generous encouragement!

  7. Great idea. I might have to read this. I might learn something myself.

    Thanks for hosting and have a wonderful weekend.

    1. Thanks for visiting here every week, Patrick. Have a wonderful week!

    2. Patrick I encourage you to! And, be sure to have some colored pencils at the ready!!!

  8. I'm so happy you had Susan as your guest today Jaime. This book is fantabulous!!! So is Susan <3 Thank you for the link up.

    1. She is a real delight. I love her story of endurance and obedience to God. I am glad we had the opportunity to hear it here. Thanks for joining us, Patricia.

    2. Patti, you are a true cheerleader in the faith. THANK YOU, my good friend.


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Seek Him First! Today's Bible Reading

James 1:17
Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of Lights with whom there is no variation or shifting shadow.

It is of utmost importance that you know that Christ died for you. He died for all sinners so that our relationship with Him could be restored.

Because of His sacrifice on the cross we can have peace. Are you seeking more peace today? Peace of the soul can only be given through the redemptive power of Jesus Christ.

I hope that you, too, know the saving grace of an amazing God.
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2 Timothy 1:7