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VBS 2024 - Day 1

Day one, done! What a blast. Today we learned that Compassion Jumps into Action! Through the story of Miriam in Exodus 2:1-10, we learn to empathize with how other feel and jump into action to ease their hurt. As we practice naming our own emotions, we are able to recognize them better in others. There are opportunities all around us to act with compassion and receive it as well! When we cultivate compassion within ourselves and each other, it ripples out to others.


We learned what the word "Lovingkindness" means. It is the act of experiencing and directing feelings of warmth towards ourselves, our loved ones, and the entire world. As lovingkindness has been studied recently, we are learning that engaging in the practice helps us develop empathy, increased social connection, and the skills and mindset necessary to practice compassion.


Then, we practiced our Lovingkindness chant:


I see your hurt.

I feel your hurt.

I help ease your hurt.



Each day, I'll post Lovingkindness Practices you can do together at home. Lovingkindness helps us remember the compassion God has for each of us. As we practice lovingkindness with ourselves and others, we develop the skills and mindset necessary to practice compassion.


Lovingkindness Practice:

We pay purposeful attention to what it feels like to experience lovingkindness and to share it.


Focus on what we hope for ourselves. Say these phrases and feel the powerful feelings of lovingkindess for yourself without any judgement.


May I be happy.

May I be healthy.

May I be safe.

May I be at peace.

repeat 3 times


Now, think about someone who was at VBS with you or maybe a family member or friend. Imagine this person in your mind and say these phrases to them.


May you be happy.

May you be healthy.

May you be safe.

May you be at peace.

repeat 3 times


End by saying: May you and I be happy. May you and I be healthy. May you and I be safe. May you and I be at peace.


Questions:

What feelings did you notice as you practiced lovingkindness?

Was it easy or difficult to practice lovingkindness?

What was easy about it? What was hard about it?


Children’s Picture Book Recommendations

Hiding Baby Moses, Judith L. Roth

What’s My Superpower? Aviaq Johnston

All Around Us, Xelena González

When You Breathe, Diana Farid


For an engaging discussion about feelings, use a feelings wheel. You can find one here: https://bit.ly/3buqg11


Lovingkindness Cards: Build on the Lovingkindness Practice by making Lovingkindness cards. To begin, ask these questions:

• What does it mean to you to feel happy?

• What does it mean to you to feel safe?

• How about staying healthy?

• What about being at peace?

• Do you think we all want to feel safe? Happy? Peaceful?


Using index cards, write a lovingkindness statement. Cards may say things like:

• “May you experience the joy of feeling happy, healthy, safe, and at peace.”

• “May you have the strength, courage, and patience to meet the challenges in life.”

• “May you have love, peace, and compassion in your life.”


Share the index cards with someone in your life as a blessing to that person.

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