partnering with parents


Join us this Sunday at 9:30am in the Teen Center for Partnering with Parents!

Making more and better disciples out of our young people takes a collaborative effort.  Partnering with parents is a “fist bump” from our Family Ministry team to JaxNaz parents.  Hear practical stories, ideas, and encouragement designed to help us do family better.

See you there!


wednesday nights in february

“I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made.”  Psalm 139:14

We have been rejoicing in the truths of this Bible verse all month!

We kicked off with a birthday party to celebrate the fact that God made each of us and has a plan for each of our lives.


Self Portraits

No one else is just like me and I will use my talents for Him!


Pretzel People


Bible verse practice


Hope you can join us tonight for some fun games to help us memorize our Bible verse!


did you know?

We will be hosting the Early On Toy Talker Playgroup again beginning this Thursday, February 16th.  Playgroups will be held every 3rd Thursday (through July) from 10:00-11:30 am and are open to all Early on families and JaxNaz families.

toy talker logo

From the Toy Talker Brochure:

“Would you and your baby or toddler like to get out of the house and have fun learning at the same time?  Join us for a great time with songs, movement activities, messy art and craft projects and more!  Your child will make new friends and so will you!

The groups give adults a chance to get together and talk about parenting with other adults while children also get a chance to play together.  A variety of topics about development are discussed.

Playgroups are for parents and caregivers with children ages 0 to 5 (siblings welcome).

The Toy Talker Playgroup is a collaboration between Jackson County Early On with Parents As Teachers and JaxNaz and funding is provided through the Great Start Collaborative 32p grant.”

Feel free to contact Ryanne Johnston, Bright Beginnings Director at JaxNaz (517-782-7084 ext. 301 or or Josie Allen, Early On Parent Educator (517-206-5869 or with any questions.

Pics from last year’s Valentine’s project…



See you Thursday!



take it home | 2.12

Extreme Sayings Series


Extreme Saying of the Week: “Don’t Love Money!”

Lesson in a Word:  Priorities

Story: The Rich Young Ruler (Mark 10:17-22)

Bible Verse: “Love of money causes trouble.”  1 Timothy 6:10 CEV

Prayer: Dear Jesus, I want You to be number one in my life.  Help me learn how to be content with what I have so that I will not always want more toys and things.  Help me to think about money in a way that pleases You.  Amen

“Take-It-Home” Activities:

Parents:   As I was preparing this lesson, I couldn’t help but think how much I needed to hear it too!  Our children see what we buy, when we buy it and how freely we give what’s ours to others.  How in love are we with our stuff?  How in love are we with our money?  Are we willing to give any of it away at any time?  It’s always helpful for me to remember that everything we have has been given to me by God, even money.  He’s entrusted me and blessed me with it and I am simply asked to use it to glorify Him.    What a freeing way to live!

Toddlers: Children this age are, by nature, very self-centered.  You can help change that focus by encouraging sharing all the time!  When you are playing with your child ask “May I have a turn please?”  When they offer it up to you say “Thank You!” and after you have played with the toy then say “It’s your turn!”  Modeling how to share at an early age will help begin to shape giving hearts.

Age 3 – Kindergarten: Take some time this week to talk with your child/ren about something they would like to give to someone in need.  There are many community agencies that are always taking donations, or you can  bring them to our food pantry at JaxNaz.  They could help pick out one of their toys, an article of clothing, or food from your cupboards.  Load up your donations and bring your child along to drop them off!

Parents of children in the Backyard:  Ask your child/ren about the “I Can Give” picture they drew in class, and then help to make it happen!

Parents of children in K-Street:   Take some time this week to talk with your child/ren about the paper they completed in class.  Whenever your child receives or earns money, it is a great idea to help them divide it for tithe, saving, and spending.  If you are unsure of how much to put into each category, it is Biblical to tithe 10%, and a good rule of thumb to put 50% in savings and the remaining 40% for spending.  Instilling these practices into your child/ren now will help them be good stewards of money in the future!


take it home | 02.05

Extreme Sayings Series


Extreme Saying of the Week:  “Let’s Move a Mountain!”

Lesson in a Word:  Faith

Story:  Noah & the Ark (Genesis 6:14-22)

Bible Verse:  “Faith proves what we cannot see.”  Hebrews 11:1

Prayer:  Dear Jesus, please help my faith in you grow.  As my faith grows, so will my hope.  I want to believe in you and trust You for everything in my life.  I want to have faith to do the impossible things for You.  Amen

“Take-It-Home” Activities:

Parents:  Building faith in God takes a lifetime.  It is not something we receive instantly, in full.  The more you learn about God through prayer, devotional time, worship and church, the more you know God and trust Him.  Pray for God to strengthen your faith this week, then be prepared to grow!  It may be in something small such as having the confidence to invite a friend to church, standing up for a friend, or doing the right thing when you are tempted to do something else, or it may be something life changing that you wouldn’t be able to get through without God’s help.  When you take the time daily to get to know God more, you can have faith that He will walk with you through those life changing times.

Toddlers: Our story this week was about Noah and the ark.  Help your child retell this story this week by adding simple motions; have your child “hammer” when Noah is building the ark, pretend to be different animals as they are loading the ark, make the storm by tapping on their legs for rain, stomping their feet for thunder, and rocking back and forth in the boat!  Remind your child that Noah had faith in God and God took care of Noah.

Age 3 – Kindergarten: Play “minefield” this week to teach your child about faith.  Scatter different objects in an indoor or outdoor space, then blindfold your child and have him/her try to get from one end to the other without touching any objects simply by listening to your verbal cues.  After you’ve played, take a moment to talk with your child about what it means to have “faith” when you cannot see.


take it home | 01.29

Extreme Sayings Series

Extreme Saying of the Week:  “Forgive Everyone”

Lesson in a Word:  Forgiveness

Story:  The person who wouldn’t forgive.  Matthew 18:23-35

Bible Verse:  “Forgive everyone.”  Colossians 3:31a

Prayer: Dear Jesus, I am so glad that you always forgive me when I do wrong things.  Please help me to forgive others when they do something wrong to me.  Help me to follow your example of forgiving everyone, not just the people I want to.  Amen

“Take-It-Home” Activities:

Parents:  Is there someone in your life you need to forgive?  Parents lead by example and your children are watching!  Make that phone call or write that letter today

Birth – Age 2: Take each day this week to give your child a big hug and tell them something you love about them, making it different each day.  Your children will be more likely to experience God’s love and offer forgiveness to others when they know they are unconditionally     loved by you!

Age 3 – Kindergarten: It’s great to teach your children to say “I’m sorry” when they’ve wronged someone; however, it’s also great to teach them to forgive when someone has wronged them.  Make it a habit in your home to say “I forgive you” when someone says “I’m sorry” to you.  Forgiveness is a process that we need God’s help to accomplish, but we can train our children to have hearts that respond with forgiveness

*  Our Backyard & K-Street friends made “Forgiveness Cards” this week.  Help your children give them to someone who needs their forgiveness…perhaps a friend that hurt their feelings or a sibling who wouldn’t share…or keep the card to use the next time your child needs to offer forgiveness to someone.

img_20170129_100728015_hdrThe weight of unforgiveness.

img_20170129_100716076_hdrimg_20170129_100748394_hdrLearning how God forgives.

what we’ve been up to | wednesday nights

Check out what we’ve been up to in January…

Working hard to memorize God’s Word.img_20170118_194643379img_20170118_194734169img_20170118_194820497

Playing games (and laughing, of course!).img_20170118_194656149


Practicing our writing.img_20170118_194703970

Making a creation mural.


Hope to see you next month!

take it home | 01.22

Extreme Sayings Series

Extreme Saying of the Week:  “Love Your Enemies!”

Lesson in a Word:  Love

Story:  Joseph (Genesis 37:1-28 & 45:4-5)


Acting out the Bible Story

Bible Verse:  “Love each other.”  John 15:12

Prayer:  Dear Jesus, help me to love others in the way that you love me.  It is easy to love my friends and family but help me to show love to those who are hard to love or that don’t like me.  Amen


We want to be like “felt” not “sandpaper”

“Take-It-Home” Activities:

Parents:  Give your children extra hugs this week!  Reassure them of your love as you       interact with them through your words and physical touch.  Studies have shown that playful physical interaction such as tickling, wrestling, chasing and catching, etc. between a parent and child releases high levels or endorphins in the children and strengthens the parent/child bond.  So have fun this week and know that as you pour love into your child, you are showing them God’s love.  They will be much more likely to share love with others when they feel loved!

Birth – Age 2:  Tell your children you love them and everything that God wonderfully and uniquely created for them, then play “I love your…” with your child:  Say “I love your….nose!” and point to their nose, “I love your….ears!” and point to their ears, etc.

Age 3 – Kindergarten:  Remember that you can make “teachable moments” out of                 potentially negative situations.  Take some time to ask your child who they think an “enemy” might be.  It may be a girl who always makes faces at them or a boy who yells at them or pushes them for no reason.  Maybe it’s the kids who call them names.  Remind them that these are the kids Jesus asks us to love!  It’s not easy, but since Jesus said it in the Bible, we need to do it.  We can be extreme in our actions when we show love to others who hurt us.  The next time someone hurts your child, let them know it’s alright to feel hurt, then help them come up with a way they can show love to their “enemy.”   They can share a toy with them, or simply tell them “hello” the next time they see each other, or even have them over to play!



starting tomorrow!

Our next series in Bright Beginnings:


We are embarking on an awesome adventure as we learn some extreme sayings that Jesus made in the Bible!  We will go full throttle into each of the following sayings, discovering what they mean and learning how to apply them to our lives.  Over the next eight weeks we’ll be learning about loving, forgiving, having faith, establishing priorities, setting an example, serving others, being peaceful and acting wisely.

January 22nd:  Extreme Saying:  Love Your Enemies  (“Love each other.”  John 15:12)

January 29th:  Extreme Saying:  Forgive Everyone  (“Forgive everyone.”  Colossians 3:31a (CEV))

February 5th: Extreme Saying:  Let’s Move a Mountain!  (“Faith proves what we cannot see.”  Hebrews 11:1 (CEV))

February 12th:  Extreme Saying:  Don’t Love Money  (“Love of money causes trouble.”  1 Timothy 6:10a (CEV))

February 19th:  Extreme Saying:  Be Salt  (“Honor Christ.”  1 Peter 3:15)

February 26th:  Extreme Saying:   Be a Servant to All  (“Serve each other with humility.”  1 Peter 5:5b (GW))

March 5th:  Extreme Saying:  Live in Peace with Everyone  (“Live in peace.”  Romans 12:18a (NLT))

March 12th:  Extreme Saying:  Be Perfect  (“Do what it right.”  2 Corinthians 8:21 (GW))

See you tomorrow!

wednesdays in january


Story:  Creation (Genesis Chapters 1:1-31 & 2:1-4)

Theme:  God

Bible Verse:  “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.”  Genesis 1:1

SongsHe’s God the Whole World in His Hands & Creation Song

To do @ Home:

  • The next time you are in the car together play the Creation Game: each person takes a turn naming one thing God created. Play continues until no one can think of anything else or until you arrive at your destination.  🙂  Remind your children that God made EVERYTHING!
  • “I have hidden your word in my heart that I might not sin against you.” Psalm 119:11 Isn’t that the desire of every parent; for their children know God’s Word so that they will not sin against Him when they are grown?!   Be looking for our scripture memorization program coming soon and commit to helping your child/ren memorize scripture this year!