How to help your child enjoy God

BY BARBARA REAOCH |
BSF CHILDREN’S DIVISION DIRECTOR
Kids know how to enjoy pizza, pets, games and ice cream. But how we can we help them know what it means to enjoy God? God is not looking for kids who dutifully behave, but for those who will know and love Him (Psalms 34:8, 37:4). Something will always be missing until they grasp that God made us to enjoy a relationship with Him (Genesis 1:26, Psalm 16:11, Matthew 22:25-38).
A father’s story

 

One father shared his struggles and joys in bringing his three kids to BSF every Monday. “The kids love it,” he said, “but it’s lots of work for me!”

A neighbor asked why he bothered rushing home every Monday and then back to church for BSF. “One Monday a week,” he replied, “is a small investment for the eternal dividends God promises.”

This father understands that enjoying God is a process. His kids once thought of God’s Word as a rule book. Now they’re experiencing God’s Word as His voice and enjoying a delicious meal for their souls (Psalm 119:103).

At first, his kids read the Bible just to complete all the study questions. “Over time, my kids’ thinking about Bible study has changed. It’s no longer ‘eat your vegetables.’ Now Bible study means tasting sweet honey.” The study questions serve his kids as a journal. They record God’s truths with words and pictures. This journal helps them realize what it means to enjoy God.

More than a “Dear Diary” discipline, journaling helps kids concentrate. God made our brains so the act of writing out our thoughts helps us think and remember. Here’s an amazing truth: nothing has a greater impact on a child’s life than the Word of God. The Holy Spirit takes God’s Word and points us to Jesus. When we write down what is true about God, the Holy Spirit supersizes it!

An 8-year-old’s journal entry.

These three journaling topics can also help get you started:

CLICK EACH TOPIC BELOW TO READ MORE

What do God’s actions tell you about who He is?

How can we help kids enjoy God as they would their best friend?

We cannot see God, but we can help kids know God in His Word. God’s actions tell us who He is. As you read the Bible together, point out what God is doing.

Then ask, “What did God do, and what does His action tell us about Him?”

Examples:

  • Genesis 1:1, 27; Psalm 19:1 – God created everything. God alone is able to bring something out of nothing. He is all-powerful and good.
  • Isaiah 41:10; Romans 3:24-26 – God is also righteous. Jesus willingly died so that the Father could forgive our sin and give us Jesus’ righteousness (Psalm 86:11; 2 Corinthians 5:21).
Describe what God has done for you in Jesus.

Children do not understand their own sinful hearts and the greatness of God’s grace to them in sending Jesus as an atonement for sin. We can help kids understand and remember God’s acts of love.

Ask, “What has God done for me in Jesus, and how will I praise Him?”

Examples:

  • Our holy and loving Father created us to love and enjoy Him (Genesis 1:27-30; 1 Corinthians 1:9; 2 Corinthians 13:14; 1 John 1:1-7). As His precious children we are happiest when we live for His honor (Isaiah 43:4-7; Acts 17:28).
  • Jesus is stronger than everything – even sin and death. God promises to forgive the sin of all who turn to Him and trust in Jesus. God’s children will spend eternity in heaven with Him (Ephesians 1:4-5; Romans 8:1).
How you are learning to love the things Jesus loves?

Children think their own way is best. We can help them understand the joy and privilege of obeying our loving Father, whose way is always best (Romans 6:22-23; 1 Corinthians 6:19-20).

As you read the Bible, watch for God’s Word to teach, challenge, correct and train you and your child (2 Timothy 3:16-17).

The Holy Spirit grows us to be more like Jesus as we respond to God (Ephesians 4:22-24). Knowing God as Father changes us from being rule-keepers to people who can find joy in obedience (Romans 8:14-16).

Examples:

  • The Holy Spirit is Jesus with you all the time. All who turn to God and trust in Jesus have the Holy Spirit living in them (Romans 8:9-15). That’s how close Jesus is!
  • God invites us to taste and see His goodness (Psalm 34:8). As we spend time getting to know God by listening to Him speak, we love and enjoy Him.
Super-sized enjoyment

Journal entries help you remember. God strongly warns His people not to forget His Word. At the same time, He encourages us to actively remember His goodness (Deuteronomy 4:10; 8:2, 18; 32:7). Help your family learn to rest in God’s grace for the future as you remember together what He has done in the past (2 Thessalonians 2:13; 2 Timothy 2:8). Journal in words, pictures, stories, poems or songs, to help you remember the mighty work of God in your lives.

Journal entries help you trace God’s work to make you more like Jesus. Most children enjoy looking at family photos and videos to see how much they’ve grown. Or they eagerly mark their physical growth on a door or wall. Spiritual growth is not as easily measured. The Holy Spirit changes us little by little, as we yield to Him. In the future, when you reread the journal notes, you will enjoy God even more. He will reveal to you His power at work in the minds and hearts of those you love.

Are you ready to start journaling as a family? Parents can play an active role in helping children discover their soul’s most satisfying joy in God. This requires earnest prayer and deliberate effort. Together, families can discover that the greatest enjoyment in this world and in the ages to come is God alone.

A 10-year-old’s journal entry.

Barbara Reaoch’s new book A Jesus Christmashas just been released. The book is a 25-day journey that can guide your family through the Old and New Testaments to Jesus.

Each day’s Scripture passage leads kids of all ages to explore God’s truth in their lives. The Family Journaling space gives you a daily opportunity to begin to learn how journaling helps kids enjoy God.

132 Comments

  1. Grace Githinji, Nairobi Kenya

    Hi Barbara,

    I love the analogy, not “eat your vegetables” but “taste sweet honey”.

    Thank you for your precious years of service over the years. May the Lord richly bless and enlarge you and the work that you obediently laboured in, for his service.

    My son now almost 4 years, started BSF Well, in my womb 🙂 But physically 6 months. We travelled miles each week for BSF but now It’s a wonderful blessing & deeply fulfilling reward to see faith grow in his heart as he declares, “Jesus is in my heart, so I’m not afraid of the dark… “, “Jesus can help you”, “that will not make Jesus happy” and actively turning his desires and needs to God Conversationally at any opportunity!

    Now serving as a GL, I Continually encourage my members to bring their children & those around them to BSF for foundational building of faith.

    Your service has encouraged me and is such a blessing to many! May the Lord bless your next step.

    Love & blessings!

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  3. Linda Gent

    I am so excited for this amazing work of GOD! So sorry to know this wonderful leader is retiring but we know there is NO retire in Scripture. She is only refiring in a different manner! The program has been facelifted so wisely. It feels pretty seamless and I am pretty old (“age 70”). Having been a Public School teacher, and trained through a liberal education, the opportunity to come under the disciplines of Bible Study Fellowship was GOD ordained. I thank GOD for such outstanding leadership and the privilege to minister within BSF . I have grown immensely and pray I can be of use in the Children’s Department until I am 103 and die while doing my lesson! GOD BLESS YOU Barbara and all the AMAZING leaders of BSF! TO GOD BE THE GLORY!

    • Barbara Reaoch

      Many thanks for your thoughtful comments, Linda….and for your faithful leadership. May God give you the desire of your heart – to love and serve Him all your days! To God be the glory, indeed – Barbara

  4. Connie Craig

    I want to thank you for your service to children. As a 76 year old child of God, I was struck by the term redemptive discipline. I want to learn that language. Could you give me direction in practical terms what that is? A reading list? I need more input.

    • Barbara Reaoch

      I am excited to hear that you want to know more about Redemptive Discipline and suggest you talk with the children’s supervisor in your BSF class. But the main concept is that “all discipline issues are opportunities to turn a child’s heart toward Him.”
      In Him,
      Barbara

  5. Sylvia Kangwana

    How my son loves to scribble and draw even on the sides of his lesson, and how many times i have erased the scribbling so he can present a clean one. Journaling is an answered prayer. Thank you for allowing God to use you as you have served though the years and may He reward you abundantly.

    • Barbara Reaoch

      How wonderful to hear about your son’s creativity – a God-given gift…..thank you so much for letting me share your joy!
      with joy,
      Barbara

  6. Janet Lee

    Thank you so much for the many years of your life that were dedicated to the BSF Children’s Program. God has done amazing things through your commitment to make the CP the incredible program that it is. I have been a CS for many years and love the emphasis on gospel centered teaching and reaching the next generation with the infant and toddler classes. What a blessing to be a part of such a God centered program that remains true to the Holy Bible. I appreciate all you have done and I know God has more great things for you as you enjoy time with your family!

    • Barbara Reaoch

      Thanks for the blessing of your note, Janet.
      For Him,
      Barbara

  7. Susan Munangagwa

    We thank Barbara for working for God. Young people will be brought up knowing how to survive in this hostile period of the anti Christ!!

    • Barbara Reaoch

      Yes, Susan….this is a world full of lies so let’s keep giving our children the truth about Jesus!
      Onwards,
      Barbara

  8. Pat Smith

    Dear Barbara, As we have been reminded in Joshua, we serve until our last breath! Your leadership in BSF was very special and helpful to me both as a leader and as a grandmother. I am happy to see your latest book and look forward to seeing what God has planned for you in the future! There are so many more marvelous opportunities in BSF these days to study God’s Word. Love them all; this is my favorite — that the opportunity has come to have school age children go to a DW class and have age appropriate material from the School Program as part of their home schooling! So many years of fervent prayer now granted by our loving God!! Thank you for your obedience to wait on Him and To God Alone Be The Glory!!

    • Barbara Reaoch

      Yes, Pat – to God be the glory. God works through prayer, so thank you for your faithfulness.
      in Him,
      Barbara

  9. VIRGINIA WAWIRA

    Dear Barbra
    Glory to God for such a great inspiration
    Thank you Barbra for not keeping quite with this great inspiration that we can be able to impact the next generation.Am sure this will be interesting and make their mind and heart connect.I purpose by the help of the Holy Spirit to introduce to children when teaching them even at home .
    God bless you.

    • Barbara Reaoch

      May God bless you as you teach the next generation, Virginia.
      Your in Christ,
      Barbara

  10. Aletter Magwere

    Dear Barbra. I would like to take this opprtunity to to thank you for the job you did as the children’s programme diracter. May the Lord bless you abuntantly. I am sure many children benefited form you leadership.

    • Barbara Reaoch

      Thank you for your encouragement, Aletter,
      Barbara

  11. Shai Kroeker

    Hi hi Barbara 🙂 I just want to thank you so much for your servant-heartedness in BSF Children’s Ministry! I grew up spiritually in BSF and I LUV this wonderful ministry! Children are so precious and what you have done through BSF has been so impactful! Your contribution has been very much appreciated by many especially parents like me who can bring their infants and toddlers to BSF and study God’s Word together as a family! I had volunteered with the children’s program and I was blown away by the depth of teaching that takes place in an engaging way! All glory to God for using your passion and love for Him and the children in a creative way! I love your sharing on journaling and I am inspired to use the technique with our child when she is older, and also read the book! Blessings on your new adventure with God as you continue to love and serve Him in other ways!

    • Barbara Reaoch

      Thanks so much for writing, Shari.
      warmly,
      Barbara

  12. Rachel Williams

    Barbara, thank you for your testimony of how to love and lead in a Christ-like manner. God has used you countless times to encourage other leaders, volunteers, parents, and grandparents to remember our salvation in Christ carries over to everything we do and say. Your resources have impacted me personally as a CL, and I am grateful to have had the training from you through BSF HQ. May you enjoy your retirement and continue to reap the benefits of loving and serving Jesus through BSF.

    • Barbara

      Thanks for sharing your heart, Rachel. With gratitude, Barbara

  13. Cindy Yenser

    Hi Barbara,
    Thank you for your service in furthering God’s Kingdom. Do you do book signings?

    • Barbara

      Thanks for writing, Cindy. I do sign my books and would be happy to do so for you, any time. Barbara

  14. Tabatha Schreck

    Dear Barbara,
    My family grew immensely through the children’s program at BSF. I thank you for all of your years of service to the Lord! As the children’s ministry leader at our church, I would like to purchase your devotional for each of our families. When looking on amazon, I am guaranteed delivery any time between November 26th and January 1st…yikes! Is there a better place to purchase this and be guaranteed delivery before December?

    • Barbara Reaoch

      Thanks for writing, Tabatha – Amazon is having issues scheduling timely deliveries due to high demand.
      You can also order A Jesus Christmas from https://www.thegoodbook.com/a-jesus-christmas. They give guaranteed availability and standard shipping will take no more than 1 week.
      Ask them for bulk rates.

  15. Jean Sanborn

    Dear Barbara,

    I want to thank you for your years of leadership in the BSF children’s program. It is so meaningful in a child’s life. I have had the privilege of having three grandchildren in the program over a period of years and one great grandchild. Also, my daughter enrolled two other grandchildren in past years. They have loved the program as I have. It has given them the very basic foundation of knowing the Lord and how important the bible is and what Jesus means to them. My great granddaughter summed it up by simply stating “Jesus loves me.” I now have a three year old great granddaughter that I would love to bring to classes but she is very apprehensive of new situations and people just now. I hope to take her in the next year but don’t want to traumatize her this year. I hope to find details in past lessons to introduce her to God in her home. Her parents are not believers, but allow me to take the girls to BSF.

    I’ve gone on a bit but I truly want you to know just how much BSF has meant to me and my grandchildren. Thank you so much for your time and leadership in this great program.

    • Johnson N Kimani

      Dear Barbara Congratulations as you proceed to retirement.I am sure you empowered my souls as Children’s Ministry leader for over a decade.Book you developed will be a blessings to our glad children in future.To God be glory.God bless you abundantly.

      • Barbara Reaoch

        Thank you, Johnson. You said it well, To God be the Glory! warm regards, Barbara

    • Barbara Reaoch

      Thanks for writing, Jean. I considered it a blessing to hear your stories of your precious grandchildren.
      From another grateful grandmother,
      Barbara

  16. Witt and Pat Wilkerson

    Dearest Barbara,
    Thank you for the rich legacy of love for Christ and all His children you have demonstrated since the day we have known you!
    We love you deeply and pray the Lord’s richest blessings on you, His child, as He guides your steps in the future days.

    • Barbara Reaoch

      Many thanks for the blessing of your love and friendship, Witt and Pat.

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    Some times its a pain in the ass to read what blog owners wrote but this site is real user genial! .

  18. Victor Tay

    Dear Babara

    I serve in the BSF ministry as a Children’s Leader. Saw you and the team last year during the retreat in Singapore. I was greatly impacted by the gospel-centred teaching that you went through with us. Thanks a lot, realised the importance of doing that.

    • Barbara Reaoch

      Thanks for writing, Victor. And many thanks for your service as a CL in Singapore. A leader who teaches a child the truth about God leaves an indelible impression on his or her heart.

  19. Brenda

    We’ve never met, Barbara, but I want to thank you for your service to BSF, and thank you for the books/journals you have published and are writing! I’ve ordered them for my grandchildren.

    • Barbara Reaoch

      Thanks for writing and letting me share your joy. Children who have a godly grandmother are VERY blessed!

    • Barbara Reaoch

      Thank you, Brenda. I trust God will bless your grandchildren as you read His truth with them.
      warmly,
      Barbara

  20. Kathi Fried

    I would like to know how much the book is and I would love to order a book!

    • Barbara Reaoch

      Thanks for the question Kathi…Amazon is currently restocking, so in the meantime, you can get your copy at…https://www.thegoodbook.com/a-jesus-christmas …. There’s guaranteed availability and standard shipping will take no more than 1 week…check the prices out on their website. Let me know if you have any more questions! Barbara

  21. Lou Killough

    This sounds like a great tool for children! Thank you for your commitment to the Lord and to teaching our new generation about the Lord through your instruction and writing to help parents be equipped! Thank you for your service & dedication to BSF for these years!

    • Barbara Reaoch

      Thank you for writing, Lou.

  22. Meiling Leung

    Thank you for your sharing and teaching. What a great idea to have the kids to start journaling and they can use drawing as part of their journals. Also the framework of journaling by addressing the 3 topics is very useful even for me as adult. Thanks again for your love for the kids. God bless the work of your hands.

    • Barbara

      Thanks Meiling…I trust you will find much enjoyment in God as you journal. Blessings, Barbara

  23. Kelly Wells

    Barbara –
    I too am thankful for the wonderful materials we get to use to teach as BSF CL’s. But the thing that comes to mind when I hear your name is from when I heard you speak at a Leader’s Retreat in Charlotte earlier this year. Your presentation on Gospel centered vs moralistic teaching was a huge eye opener for me. Even the other day when I had an issue with my teenage daughter I asked God to help me handle it in a Gospel centered, not moralistic, way. Thank you so much for your service to BSF and teaching me this important truth. May God bless you and your family in your retirement.

    • Barbara

      Thanks for writing, Kelly. Always happy to hear what God does with His gospel truth! Love, Barbara

  24. Lynell Shamburger

    Where can we get the Journal. I have 3 grandkids that I would love to give this to them. I am very interested in it, because I know what an impact on the BSF Children’s program has introduced and help trained so many children. Train up a child how they should know The Lord God and they shall not depart from it. Thank you for investing in each child and parent.
    Lynell Shamburger

    • Barbara

      Hi Lynell. You will find the family journal section in the book A Jesus Christmas. You may order the book on either Amazon or The Good Book Company websites. Happy journaling! Barbara

  25. Audra Swindell

    I just bought Jesus Christmas and love how you’ve laid it out. I so appreciate you using clear methods to teach, but not with a heavy hand. I see a shift away from a behavior-driven Faith to one based on grace and truth and so appreciate your push towards that goal. I have been more than impressed with the BSF children’s program since we started three years ago. I can’t say thank you enough for the trickle down!

    • Barbara

      Thanks for your kind words….I’m grateful to know the shift toward grace is evident! Blessings, Barbara

  26. Jill Shelly

    Barbara,

    As a former infant children’s leader I cannot say “Thank you,” enough. With my own young children what I have gained from teaching the Word of God to the tiniest babies is immeasurable. 2 Timothy 3:14-15 has been the verse I go back to again and again. Gospel-centered teaching and redemptive discipline have transformed not only my parenting, but also my perspective with adults! From the bottom of my heart, thank you for your continued faithful service to our Lord.

    • Barbara

      Yay!!! Thanks for writing Jill. For God’s glory, Barbara

  27. Sandy Satterfield

    My daughter prayed to receive Christ as her Lord and Savior at age 8 through the BSF School Program when we lived in Singapore. I was CS in the first school age class there. She’s 30 now and has 3 lovely children. She was a BSF Childrens’ leader in NC and took two of her children to BSF. They already have a heart for God. They live in Oxford, MS now where there is no BSF class. They are military and move often. I pray their next move that they can return to a BSF class. I am now a leader in a satellite class on Hilton Head Island, SC. BSF is wonderful. I love how they are expanding through Satellite. The Childrens’ Program is awesome. Thank you for all you’ve done for many children worldwide. I just ordered your book for my grandchildren. May God richly bless you, Barbara.

    • Barbara

      Thanks for writing Sandy. It’s beautiful to hear about God’s grace to your family. May your grandchildren be blessed by the truth of Jesus, this Christmas. Barbara

  28. Lori J Anderson

    Barbara, May God bless you richly in your retirement! I remember when you brought the Infant/ Toddler classes to BSF and how well “Redemptive Discipline” was received, and used. Bible Study Fellowship has sure been a blessing to me for 10 years. I was a CL and ACS (currently a GL). I will consider buying your book for my grandchildren. Thank you for the “Journaling Topics” in the blog, too; they are great!! Love and blessings to you. Love in Christ, Lori

    • Barbara

      Hi Lori, Grateful to know that the I / T program and RD are among your happy remembrances in BSF. Thanks for your leadership in BSF. I trust your grandchildren will be blessed with truth and joy this Christmas. Barbara

  29. Veronica Fox

    I want to use this opportunity to say thank you for your years of service and the investment you’ve made in God’s kingdom and in my grandsons lives. Ten years ago I became a discussion/group leader, and a grandmother to my first grandson a few years later. During that time, I attended my first retreat as a leader, and they announced the program where we were allowed to bring infants. They shared how the infants in the pilot program responded by sitting and listening as each weeks stories began in their classes. I was honestly utterly amazed by what was shared and I wanted my grandson to be there.
    Now I have my third grandson in the program, and each of them have been blessed. Our family has been blessed from there time of being in the program.
    There has been a direct correlation from what they say and do as a result of going through the children’s program. These are just a few examples of the extent of they understanding. You know how little boys do role play with one another, like cops and robbers, or other good guy and villains, well, my grandsons apparently do bible characters. Last year, the five year old said to the eight year old, “I’m Jesus on the cross,” and the oldest responded without hesitation, “and I’m the one who put you there, ” or when that same five year old said to me a year earlier, “MiMi, you know Jesus is coming soon.” The seeds that’s been sown into the children’s lives will forever, eternal impact their lives and ours.
    I look forward to purchasing your book for them to start journaling. Once again, thank you and God bless you in your continuing journey!
    To God Be the glory,
    Veronica Fox

    • Barbara

      Hi Veronica…..thanks so much for taking the time to share such a sweet testimony with me. My heart is happy! May your grandchildren discover truth and joy in Jesus this Christmas. To God be the Glory, Barbara

  30. Richard Livingstone Ochwo

    Dear Barbara

    I’m a member of BSF satellite study group based at St. Stephens Kisugu church of Uganda (Anglican) in Kampala Uganda for the last three seasons.

    I started my BSF journey with the study about Moses (2015/2016), the study of John (2016/2017), the study of Romans (2017/2018) and currently continuing with the study of people to the Promised Land.

    Madam Susan C. Rowan just wrote to me an email and it is my first time to hear about you.

    Based on what I read, it is my prayer that God may have awarded you with spiritual ranking up the level of either a general or even more than that.

    I know that you are just retiring but, not tired and I wish you the best of all in your life, family plus others in general.

    Richard Livingstone Ochwo

    • Barbara Reaoch

      Dear Richard Livingstone Ochwo, Thank you for writing. I am so glad to know of your involvement in a satellite group in Uganda. God is growing the work that began in Uganda long ago through our dear friends, Barbara, and Dan Chrouser. When my husband Ron and I were teaching BSF classes in Cape Town, South Africa, we always enjoyed meeting with the leaders from Uganda for retreat (in Nairobi, Kenya). You are right – I may be retiring, but by God’s grace, I am not tired!! For God’s glory, Barbara

  31. Jenny Harden

    Barbara,
    I am so grateful for all you have given to BSF children and families. I love the journaling concept and I can’t wait to read the book. I will never forget how connected I felt toward you the very first time I went to HQ. God used you to encourage me just as He has used your service to encourage so many. Keep writing! Your encouraging thoughts and insight are a means of blessing for so many. I am praying that God enlarges your territory of impact for Him in all that the future holds!

    • Barbara Reaoch

      So glad to hear from you, Jenny. Thanks for your encouragement. May His name be praised! Barbara

  32. Rosemary Hebert

    Barbara,
    You have allowed the words of Jesus to guide your days…”come follow me”…and have been a lamp for so many others to follow.
    God bless and keep you until we meet one day.

    • Barbara Reaoch

      Thanks so much, Rosemary. Following Jesus with you, Barbara

  33. Mary Ann Turner

    Barbara,
    Thanks for allowing God to use you in the lives of children and families. You bring glory and honor to His Name. I will share the information about your work and book.

    • Barbara Reaoch

      Thanks, Mary Ann. For His glory in the next generation, Barbara

  34. Vivian Price, TL Princeton, NJ DW

    Barbara. You have done so much to enhance our BSF Childrens program and are thankful for your God given skills and insight.
    Wondering what is the age appropriate for tour new book? Couldn’t see it on the book cover or in the description at Amazon

    • Barbara Reaoch

      Hi Vivian, thanks for your question. Right now several families, with children in a broad range of ages, are piloting A Jesus Christmas. They say that all family members are engaged from preschool to teens – even the parents! There are questions designated for younger kids and older kids – so something for all. Hope this helps. Blessings, Barbara

  35. Dalene Wolmarans

    Barbara- Thank you so much for how you served our Lord at BSF! I have been blessed to serve in the Childrens program as a leader during many of the changes implemented during your time. Redemptive discipline had such a huge impact in the lives of CLs and the children – truly a God sent gift for us all! Thank you for your work in Cape Town to start the class there! I think of you every time I visit there. Definitely getting your book to impact my future grandchildren for Christ!

    • Barbara Reaoch

      Hi Dalene, Oh my….so you travel to Cape Town every now and then! How I miss those dear friends and thank God for their faith and trust in the Lord. Be sure to greet them all next time you visit. And may God richly bless you and your grandchildren… especially this Christmas, Barbara

  36. Shirley Lehrkind

    Shirley Lehrkind & Hawkins MCDonald, I have been in BSF for at least 10 yr,s. When I came to BSF, I was having a lot of trouble with my husband, As I read and studied the Bible, it had a message for all of us, He is our power, He is over all things in Heaven and on earth,He gives me the strength to face my battles. Has I was facing some things, I looked at my Grandson, I took him to BSF, when he was 6, he learned to listen, read better and God gave him strength to be a better person, he is now 22 year’s old and in his secound year of becoming a doctor . This is the letter he wrote to BSF. AS much as I would like to express myself and gratitude in person, it is great either way, to you and all the teachers at the church. I have greatly missed coming to BSF and hearing the nightly lecture’s, by such great teachers of God.I would like to come and thank all my teachers in person for the vast knowledge you have all passed down to my Grandmother and I, To always hold true to ourselves,and to be given the Blessings of The Living Word. It is my earnest hope and prayer that each boy and girl around the world remains safe, in Gods Great word and never fulters on the path to his Righteousness Ephesians 2:8 9 “For by grace you have saved through Faith, and that not of yourselves;it is the gift of God. Thank you for the wonderful word of God you have given all these children May God Bless you the rest of your days.

  37. Bonnie Barnes

    Barb, so thankful for all the years you have given to BSF and the wonderful ways God has used you to share the gospel with all those precious children and students. Many blessings to you and Ron. Hope to visit you guys sometime in the future. I am currently in Chester, England visiting John and Cyd. I attended BSF here on Wednesday. As I walked to class, a young mom was pushing her little one in a stroller ahead of me. It made me smile when I caught up with her on the sidewalk and saw her BSF lesson in the basket in the bottom of the stroller. I am thousands of miles away from Virgina, but seeing that mom, her little one, and that lesson made me feel right at home! Your work at BSF is reaching moms and children all over the world. To God be the glory! Love you so much!!

  38. Caroline Holsinger

    THANK YOU FOR SERVING THE LORD CREATIVELY AND FAITHFULLY!
    GOD has blessed you with many skills that you have used to motivate ALL age groups!!
    Psalm 127 and Psalm 128 and other precious Scriptures remind us of the precious gift of children.

  39. Vivien Ho

    Dear Barbara,

    I thanks God that He had given me an opportunity to attended you seminar at last year retreat in Singapore. It help me so much.And I am bringing my son to BSF since he was 1 month old and now he was 30 months at First Baptist Church in Subang, Malaysia. He enjoy all the basic truth song, even myself love it so much. The lyric was so Awesome. God bless you.

  40. Dr. Stephen Ashodian

    Dear Barbara,
    Thank you so much for your awesome commitment to the kids of BSF and for placing the next generation front and center. Being a CS has been a great gift from God and I am so thankful that I was able to come to HQ and meet you and be trained by you and your great staff. I’m sorry to see your time at HQ come to an end but I know that God always has a plan for us while we’re here and I know you will continue faithfully on that journey with Him. God bless you and your family.

  41. Ashley Robinson Odom

    My son and I started attending a Women’s Day BSF class that offered the infant and preschool classes 4 years ago with the study of Revelation. It was a life-changing experience for both of us and we would sing the verses and songs in the car rides and at bedtimes. One year ago, when he began Kindergarten, I took my 3 school age kids to an evening BSF class that has the kids program. While Monday evenings were a challenge to get out of the house, we were always so blessed by the teaching and our car ride home was filled with deep, Biblical discussions. We are continuing the Monday night study and are so very appreciative of the lessons, notes, activities, and questions. Thank you for this ministry!

  42. Diane

    Thank you, Barbara, for serving the Lord so faithfully for all of these years. Your impact will be felt for all of eternity! We were thrilled when the school program began and have had the blessing of having our children study the Word in BSF. It has been a tool the Lord has used in our family to encounter God through His Word. Now as an ACC, I get to see in an even greater way how your love for the Lord and for this next generation is truly impacting children and their families! I am thankful to God to have had the opportunity to serve under your leadership. God bless you as you move on to this next chapter of your life and see all that the Lord has for you and the many ways He will continue to use you for His glory!

  43. Annie pender

    God bless your work for him, he will give you your reward.keep the faith as you move forward for our lord. Bsf sister in. Christ. Annie p.

  44. Elizabeth Freeman

    Thank you for all that you have done for the Lord. BSF is a wonderful program where we as women can get closer to God. And having so many Christian women together is uplifting. Gods love and power are with us as we study, share, pray and support one another. I feel such power and strength after BSF to spread Gods word.

    Thank you for the dedication, love and time you gave to BSF. It is a fruitful ministry. Thank you so much!

  45. Natalie Cooper

    Barbara, what a blessing you have been to me as a CL and to my 3 kids who started in the preschool program and continue in the school program. I was even privileged to bring my unbelieving friend’s daughter for a couple years and have faith that those seeds were planted! Your commitment to the cause of Christ and reaching the next generation is inspiring. May God continue to bless your work for Him as you move on to your next adventure!

  46. Denise Marshall DWFayetteville Ar

    Dearest Barbara,
    I thank God for you and how He has used you to improve the children’s program. I’ve been teaching preschool children with BSF for 17 years now. I’ve seen the changes in the program and I cannot thank you enough for your dedication and listening ears to God. I see where redemptive disciplines work!!! It is a game changer! I thank God for leading me to BSF for He teaches me much through the stories and the training you provide. What a blessing you are to so many now and the many to come. Thank you, Thank you for your listening ears to God.

  47. Meg Lybrand

    I’m in tears thinking of the enormous impact your leadership of the children’s program has had on my three girls’ lives. My oldest started the year the infant class was introduced. What a GIFT that we got to begin our parenting with BSF alongside of us the whole way. I’ll never forget her teacher telling me that she did the baby language sign for “more” during Bible story time. She knows Jesus and His Word much in part to BSF! Her sisters behind her have been in BSF since infancy, too, soaked in His Word at BSF, too—BSF songs are often the backdrop of our home. Your impact on our family has been more than you could ever know. From the bottom of my heart and my husband’s heart please hear us say THANK YOU. May you hear the Lord say “good and faithful servant” as you move on to the next season of your life! ❤️

  48. And encourage my children in the love of God. I knew that Bsf was the place to go for training. Thank you for all that you have done for me, my family, and many around the world! May the Lord bless you and what he has next for you and his kingdo

    Thank you Barbara! Your work brings me to tears of thanks and hope. Parenting my five is the hardest job I’ve ever had. One reason I became a children’s leader was so that I could learn better how to tell Bible stories and encourage my children in the love of God. I knew that Bsf was the place to go for training. Thank you for all that you have done for me, my family, and many around the world! I will always remember your training in asking questions that direct us to the Gospel. May the Lord bless you in the service he has next for you in his kingdom.

  49. Mary Hall

    Please consider publishing a journal to accompany the BSF lessons or one focusing significant milestones of faith critical for a child’s journeying with the Lord. . . One that could be used throughout the year and not just at Christmas. To God be the glory for this wonderful tool of faith that you have, obediently and lovingly, given to children.
    Do you ave a blog site to follow?

  50. Homer Ephraim

    It is wonderful to know how BSF children’s program transforms the attitude of children about Bible Study. It is really worth investment on children.i have seen this in experience of BSF for the past 10 years.

  51. Christian Jensen

    Barbara
    God bless you and thank you. My wife is a Woman’s Day Childrens leader, I served as an evening Mens Childrens Leader and now TL. I have personally interacted and taught with the materials you have influenced and our MS/HS children have experienced the BSF school program first hand.

    Thank you for your service to God and His church and for the legacy you leave behind for those who will carry the mantle in leading the Childrens/School programs forward.

  52. Malei Jane

    Hello Barbara.

    I sincerely thank God because of your dedicated service in the children’s programme. Blessed retirement….

    Our 8-13 years 4 children have grown up in BSF. They love God and the programme has really impacted their lives. As parents, bringing them up has been easy because they are well grounded in the Word of God through BSF.

    They have influenced their friends who join and enjoy learning God’s word together.

    May God who is most faithful richly bless you. May His strength be your portion and bless all what you do.

    God bless you Barbara.

    God bless All BSF Staff.

  53. Kris

    What a legacy you leave! After teaching in the children’s program for about 20 years, I can attest to the success of all your hard work. Children CAN learn the Bible. There is NO comparison to the BSF approach and I LOVE all the changes and new songs.

    • Dominique Williams

      Totally agree.
      Just done 3 years training in Children’s programme and been so blessed by the material and it’s equipping for local schools work.
      Big thankyou Barbara.☺

  54. Melodee Young

    I was able to bring my son to BSF beginning when he was a toddler. He prayed to receive Christ as his Savior during the years he was in BSF. He is now 35 and his son has come to BSF with me since he was about 1. He is now 4 and loves BSF and Jesus. I will be bringing his sister to BSF in January when she is 1. I am praying for the day that Jesus becomes their Savior and they learn to enjoy Him. I was able to bring another granddaughter to BSF until she started kindergarten. She prayed to receive Christ as her Savior in my car, in the parking lot of the BSF host church one morning. It was such a gift from God to be there with her at the most important time in her life. And, together we were able to share this good news with the head of the Children’s program and my granddaughter’s leaders and former leaders and then later to thank them publicly on Share Day. BSF has been life changing for me and my family. Thank you for your part in that.

    • Barbara Reaoch

      What a thrill to hear how God has answered your prayers and saved the generations in your family, Melodee. My heart is full of joy! Love to you and yours. Barbara

  55. Patience

    Hi Barbara, I truly appreciate your service in BSF. I was wondering why there such huge price differences in your book on Amazon, some are selling for as high as $40.36USD to as low as $9.99USD whether new or used. Kindly clarify.

  56. Kerri jacobs

    What is bsf?

    • Soni

      Hi Kerri,

      Bsf stands for Bible Study Fellowship. It is a program where men, women and children of all ages study the word of God and meet weekly. It is life changing and i encourage you to search the website for a class near you.

      God bless!

  57. Naomi- Nairobi, Kenya

    Barbara,
    God’s blessings on your retirement. Your service has impacted many, globally.

    As a Children’s Leader, and mom, the principles we learn weekly at our Leader’s training have changed how I approach my service and parenting. The Gospel-Centred approach to the teaching of God’s word has been transformative to my young family. You taught it to us at our Leader’s retreat very simply and amazingly- thank you!

    Every change you steered in the Children’s Program has brought wonderful news to us, as we engaged our PreSchoolers, weekly.

    May the Lord bless the work of your hands, and continue His work at BSF, with your successor.

  58. Andrea Abraham

    My children were in BSF preschool and my elder one who is 9 years old, love doing this kinda journal, she had been doing this from 7 years and enjoy sharing it with us every Tuesday, when we sit and do lessons based on my BSF lessons at home.Thanking God for this fellowship where both me and kids learnt a lot of truth and still learning. Thank you Barbara.God has given me a privilege to serve among kids and I really am blessed and ‘trying to implement’ home training lessons.

  59. Francesca

    Barbara,

    Thank you Barbara for your service to reach the next generation.

    The 3 journaling topics is a Brilliant approach.

  60. Nicole Stults

    Thank you for your God-honoring service, Barb! The redemptive discipline concept has been a game changer in how I’ve approached discipline with my own children and I’ve been so grateful for the dinner conversations that the HDP has ignited over the years. THANK YOU!!

  61. Kirsty McMillan

    I really enjoyed reading this article and have received great encouragement from it. It is something I am looking forward to introducing with my children. I am sure they will love it. I ordered the book and am looking forward to receiving it. Hamilton, NZ

  62. Alissa Kunze

    I have had the amazing privilege to be a children’s leader for 4 years while also raising my two and later 4 children while doing so. Each week it was a struggle to get ready and get out the door but, the truly fantastic leaders training I was exposed to was exactly what this stay at home mom needed. I was being fed spiritually, encouraged by women, and I had a break from my own kids and daily routine of life. One of the best parts was the children’s leaders training. I was being trained on how to be a good mom and how to lead my class. It was a refreshing retreat for two hours. I always felt I could tackle the next week after leadership and knew I would need more help the next. I was accountable to be in God’s Word and it helped me fix my eyes on the only One who could truly help me. The structure, the love of others, the Bible Truths are all such a blessing to my now 5 kids and husband who all get to study God’s Word together! Thank you for your part in impacting our family!

  63. Joanie Miller

    Thank you, Barb!❤️
    As of last spring, both of my kids have graduated from the BSF school program. Thank you SO much for the care and service to God you have put in! My 21-yr.-old daughter now attends the women’s class with me…when I first began BSF in ‘96, with you as my Teaching Leader, I was just pregnant with her! You could say your influence on her love for God’s Word started when she was in the womb! : ) I am forever grateful for the guidance and Biblical instruction you gave me as a newbie to formally studying God’s Word. It was foundational as I was raising my children to love and serve God with their young lives. God bless you!!❤️

    • Barbara Reaoch

      Oh…so happy to hear from you Joanie! I remember those early days with you – such a joy to serve with you. And now, it is always a blessing to hear of how God continues to use you, your husband and two precious children. much love…

  64. Lizzy Etteh

    Am very touched by your commitment and dedication to impart the lives of this little ones. Your generations yet unborn will be eternally blessed.

  65. moira tong

    Thank you for sharing. What a wonderful idea? Have done it for myself but haven’t thought of passing the idea to any of my children or grandchildren.
    But will certainly plant the idea for my greats as they start Sunday school etc.again thank you.

  66. Joan S. Spunzo

    It was such a blessing to help with caring for the infants 👶 in the BSF program. Their little face would glow when the DL would give them their lessons.

    Presently inactive and miss BSF so
    very much. Would love ❤️ to be able to be back! Maybe next year?
    Have gone through a move to a retirement facility, The Chamberlin at Fort Monroe.

  67. Ismawati Amelia

    Dear Barbara,

    My 2 kids mostly grew up in BSF Preschool Program. As I homeschool my kids, I thank God for this opportunity for them to experience what preschool would like. They were so blessed and got used to learn about God. As they are now in school program now with their father, I also grateful that they continue learning with the same (faithful) passion to Christ. BSF is keep our family walking in faith journey and growing spiritually mature TOGETHER.

    Thank you for years of dedication to reach the next generation in the world.

    Blessings from Jakarta-Indonesia!

  68. Erica

    Can’t wait to receive this book! You may not know the impact you have had on many around the world (myself included) but the Lord surely does. I am a mother of 3 children and trained children’s leader. I have used my training from BSF and the Children’s program at home and in my church. It was an answer to prayer with my strongest-willed child a couple years ago. The training manual is gold, a resource I am so thankful for. Not only have you impacted my life as a mother but also my children’s life as a part of the program. The content they have learned from God’s true book in BSF is irreplaceable. I trust that God’s Word does not return void. Thank you for the minutes, hours, days and years you served so many through the ministry of BSF. May God’s blessings flow in your retirement!

  69. Linda

    How blessed we have all been by your work, guidelines, love for children & dedication to God and His children, and I do mean “we”. As a children’s teacher I have been as blessed as the children with the inspiration our Lord has given you. You will be missed. Thank you for all your wonderful teaching tools. Can’t wait to get your book. May God bless you in all you do. You will be missed.

  70. Ben

    I deeply appreciate your dedication to shine for Jesus and to help others to grow in Him.
    Thank you!

  71. PamBuggar

    I was so happy when non family children could come since I wasn’t able to bring my son’s fiancées’ daughter as I brought my grandson. I used to take neighbor’s kids to AWANA and felt we should of been able to do that with BSF. Glad for the change!

  72. Mrs Karen YEO Singapore

    Hi Susie
    Thank you for sharing about the works of Barbara, in particular her published book
    We would like to purchase her book here in Singapore
    We send God’s Richest blessings to Barbara on her retirement

    • Sandra Lee

      Kudos to you Susie for faithfully sharing God’s Word & His kingdom purposes with us all.
      It’s been most exhilarating!
      God bless you abundantly 🙏

  73. Greg Moeller

    Thanks Barbara. This year I am teaching level one children. I love your enthusiasm for children. A word about redemptive discipline. We have a little boy who seems to require a lot of that kind of attention 😉. I thank a God for the opportunity! I think of the time we spend that way as “affection-correction.

  74. Jodi Ballard

    Is the book only available on the kindle or can it be purchased in book form? It sounds wonderful.

    • Barbara

      Hi Jodi – the book is available in book form….and I recommend the hard copy so you and your child can journal. Have a blessed Christmas. Barbara

      • Cindy Avenell

        I just clicked on the link through mybsf to purchase your lovely journal book, and it took me to Amazon. However, the choices are Kindle or paperback. Is there a hardback version or did you mean the paperback copy?

  75. Diane McFather

    I love your three questions!! I teach second graders in Sunday School at my church and can use those questions with every Bible Story. The questions really help the kids to engage, think about God not just a the story. Thank you so very much. God bless you richly.

  76. Paul Gausmann

    Dear Barbra,
    I have been a children’s leader for about the same length of time that you have been our leader. Our group of men thank the Lord every Saturday morning for the incredible material that you have provided for us each week. Your weekly material and the training manual have not only supported us and covered our backs for whatever teaching deficiencies we may have as BSF children’s leaders, but since most of us also teach Sunday school, the techniques and methods we have learned from you are put to good use at our local churches as well. I must say that we have taken you for granted and I am sorry for that, but I thank you for all the tremendous support and material you have provided over the years! We will miss you.

    • Barbara

      Thanks for your encouragement, Paul.

  77. Jennifer Shaffer

    I have to share with you my experience volunteering in the “scooters” class at my morning BSF in Kansas. I was surrounded by little munchkins all crawling and drooling with runny noses and the leader laid out a blanket and said it was story time and to bring the kids to sit on the blanket. In my mind I thought “ya right lady, these little ones will last maybe 2 seconds listening to a story” then I witnessed the most amazing thing. All 13 babies sat on the blanket and listened to this teacher read and show pictures of a bible story about Joseph. Her voice had a nice sing song tone and the pictures were large and simple. Then she passed the open Bible around and asked each baby to touch God’s word. Again I thought “oh great they are going to grab the pages and tear it”, again proven wrong every child laid their hand on the pages and touched the Bible and none tried to tear or grab it. I am telling you the Holy Spirit was present in such a way I still get goose bumps! What a blessing BSF is for not just the parents but these sweet babies. He is relevant to even the youngest of these and they even sit in awe of His presence! Thank you for serving His work and our children!

  78. Bennett Rolan

    I love this concept and can’t wait to try it! I used to think of journaling as exclusively for older kids but after seeing Barbara’s examples, I think my little ones would love it

    • Barbara

      So happy to hear how you’ve been encouraged, Bennett! Have fun watching as God transforms your child’s heart! And if you think of it, send me a pic of one of the journal entries. Love, Barbara

      • Jennifer Bryan

        Hi Barbara, thank you for your commitment and encouragement.
        I was recently thinking and praying about how best to help my grandchildren realize how strong our God is, by giving God glory for all he’s done for me. I don’t want to scare them, and wonder how much I should tell them, your journaling idea might be the best way, any advise or direction you could give me.?
        Thank you

        • Belinda Ho

          Dear Jennifer, I am on the same stage as how your are feeling of how best can I show the God awesome attributes and fear of God to my 17 months old grandson . His mother was in crisis during her pregnancy with him. God’s love and faithfulness were spoken to him while he was in mother’s womb. It is the greatest testimony I can see in him from his birth till now, how he loves the Bible song and how he hang onto the Children beginner Bible daily since he can better grasped with reading recently. He is always the one go get the Bible each morning. We are beginning to think what’s next and to develop a fun loving way he can develop his faith in God. Thank you and waiting to hear from Barbara. God bless you all.

        • Steven McElveney

          Thank you for Barbara for the way you live for Christ. Your heart for our Lord is so evident in the way you serve. It has been a blessing to know you and to learn so much from you. I know God will continue to use you in His service all for His glory.

        • Esther

          May God bless you for your gifts shared in BSF.

    • Dee and Jerry Strong

      How inspiring to have a children’s book about Christmas written by you, Barbara!
      We hope to purchase it for our grandsons (Joshua in Australia aged five and Winston in USA aged 2)
      Thank you so very much!

      God Bless, Dee and Jerry

      • Barbara Reaoch

        Hello again, Dee and Jeremy! Your grandsons must bring you to the US every once in a while….please let us know when you are here!
        Would love to see you.

    • Tassie Sumner

      This is a great idea to try with my grandchildren as well. Thanks Barbara!

    • Portia Bangonan

      Dear Barbara,
      This is very inspiring . I am single but I believe I can use this book for my niece and nephews.

      Blessings,
      Portia

    • Susie Millican

      Where can you purchase the book, A Jesus Christmas, by Barbara Reaoch? Thx. Susie

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