It’s a fairly simple craft. All you need is a stick of some sort (we used old paint sticks) and some leftover ribbons (I save them from everything!). I glued, stapled and tied them to the end of the stick. The other end was held tightly by my kids. And suddenly they were not so simple anymore. They were beautiful birds of paradise dancing and twirling before the Lord.
I know it sounds dramatic. But we were in fact imitating Birds of Paradise! I just got a spectacular book for review called, Creation Inspirations by Cheryl Pickett. It’s basically a devotional book with each chapter focusing on a different animal. The chapter begins with some basic animal info–what they eat, where they live and what they look like.
But the next section is the cool part. It’s called “A New View” and is a devotional related to the animal. I read through several (no, not all, but several!) and was impressed by the creativity of the connections to God. (I read the panda and hippo chapter first and thought, “Wow. I should do this devotional for myself!”)
Each chapter ends with an activity, snack or craft that relates to the animal, the scripture or the devotional. After a quick read through of the book, I was excited to share it with Lydia and Asa!
We chose the Bird of Paradise chapter and loved it! Birds of Paradise are GORGEOUS birds found mainly in Papua New Guinea. These birds are amazing creations–they have long feathers and a myriad of colors. But the most fun part is that the males DANCE to show off to the female birds. Really. Dance.
The devotional section about Birds of Paradise gave a great description of the real and ultimate paradise–heaven. It ended with an encouragement to remember that whoever believes in God will be in paradise with Him forever…based on Luke 23:42-43, “Then he said, ‘Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom.’ Jesus answered him, ‘I tell you the truth, today you will be with me in paradise.’” Lydia and I got to have a great conversation about Heaven and the thief on the cross (to whom Jesus said this verse.).
Then it was time to make our ribbon sticks. And you can see from the pictures that the kids loved it. After reading the chapter, looking up Birds of Paradise on National Geographic and even listening to their calls online, making their own ribbon sticks to mimic the Birds of Paradise beautiful plumes, my kids were ready to spread their proverbial wings! Per the instructions in the book, I turned on a CD (Seeds of Praise) and the kids danced and raised their hands and ribbons to God for the entire length of the CD.
I am absolutely impressed with this book. I love the whole idea–taking an animal and making a God-connection out of it. That’s really what I try to do with my kids all the time—take a normal every day item or event and teach them about God. Please check out Cheryl Pickett’s Creation Inspiration blog/website and take a minute to order Creation Inspirations.
This book would work for kids of all ages–your older kids will enjoy some of the activities that involve writing, cooking and more. But everyone will enjoy the teaching, the activities and the encouragement from God’s Word! They will in fact, be INSPIRED by God’s great CREATION!