As a mom of three children, there is nothing more rewarding than walking alongside my kids as they grow in their relationship with Christ. Whether reading the Bible or attending church on Sundays, I’ve come to place so much value on experiences we have as a family that connect us more deeply with Scripture and help us grow together.
My passion for connecting people to the Bible was cultivated early in my own childhood.
I grew up in our family’s business. My grandfather went from producing milk as a dairy farmer to producing live stage shows with a purpose. He was passionate about helping people see and understand the Bible as he did: full of life and creativity. Deeply motivated by the way Jesus used parables to help people connect to scripture, he used what he had to begin doing the same. Armed with a camera, slide projector and passion for the gospel, he began creating experiences for families to share together that connected them to Bible stories. What started as a small multi-media show grew into the Sight & Sound Theatres that exists today: two state-of-the-art venues in Lancaster, Pa. and Branson, Mo. where Bible stories come to life on a panoramic stage with massive sets and live animals (not to mention our signature roasted almonds which are an experience of their own!).
A lot may have changed in our 42-year history, but one thing remains the same: our passion for bringing the Bible to life. We realize not everyone may be able to visit us in person, so this April we’re “taking the show on the road.” For three days, our landmark production NOAH will be playing in movie theaters nationwide! We’re thrilled about the idea of thousands of people across the country experiencing this cherished Bible story together in their own backyards.
If you’re making plans to bring your family, I’d like to recommend reading the story together before embarking on your excursion (found in Genesis 6-9).
Additionally, here are three discussion questions for the drive home after your voyage:
- Noah had to make a hard decision and was ridiculed for it. Was there ever a time that you had to make a decision that wasn’t popular?
- Noah had to trust that God was going to deliver on His promise even when he couldn’t see the outcome. Was there a time you had to trust God in your own life when you didn’t know what would happen?
- God’s faithfulness is evident throughout Noah’s whole life. How have you experienced God coming through in your life?
We invite you to set sail with us in April to experience this extraordinary Bible story full of animals (two-by-two!), a monumental flood, and (spoiler alert!), a rainbow for the grand finale! Our hope is the story will come to life for your family in a brand new way. We can’t wait to see you there!
Seen by more than 5 million people live on stage, Sight & Sound’s landmark production sets sail into movie theaters April 9, 11, and 13 for a special nationwide event. Filmed in front of a live audience, NOAH takes you on history’s best-known voyage as you board the enormous ark—along with two of every kind of animal! For locations and tickets visit NoahEvent.com.
About Katie Miller
As the oldest grandchild of Sight & Sound’s founders, Katie Miller was the first member of the family’s third generation to work in the organization. Katie stepped onto the stage when she was four years old and performed as part of the cast until she was 13. Today, she serves as Corporate Communications Manager. Her unique, rich experience within the company’s formative years has helped her collaborate in everything from publicity opportunities to future succession planning. She lives in Lancaster, Pa. with her husband of 15 years and their three children.
Sign up for the Teach Them Diligently newsletter to receive more great articles!
Read our Blog, join TTD365, follow on Facebook and Instagram, and sign up to attend one of our homeschool events!
“It is more important for your child to be who he should be than know what he should know. “
Knowledge is important, but character trumps that. If you teach your child to manage time well, work hard, and love learning (and if you teach him HOW to learn), he can conquer any learning curve ahead in the future. If, however, you teach him knowledge without character or the skills above, he will be hard-pressed to continue learning new skills as an adult.
We use object lessons from daily life to mold our children’s character, foster a love for God, and inspire a love for learning. Every little circumstance and observance is a chance to learn about life, God, and ourselves.
Object Lessons from Life:
- Someone trips over a stone: a sin we consider very small can cause great damage and downfall.
- Salt and pepper on a bland dish at dinner: the Lord wants us to season our words with grace to make them easier for others to swallow.
- Choosing healthy foods over sugary snacks: be discerning about the choices we make. Do we think ahead ahead to the results of our decisions, and are we making wise choices?
- Boiling spaghetti noodles: the Lord sometimes takes those he loves through a trying time of “hot water” so our hearts become tender and of benefit to those around us.
- Gift giving: a gift comes as an unexpected surprise reminding us that God loves us — not because of our behavior or it is deserved, but because of his goodness and great love for us.
- Honey on a cracker: reminds us God’s word is sweeter than honey to our souls and sustains our spiritual bodies.
- A project that must be done in steps: reminds us God is a God of order. When we follow his commands, we can see the beauty at the end of the process.
- An army of ants in the yard: a chance to stop and observe God’s creation to learn from them as they work diligently, work together, care for one another, and store up food. God uses them as an example of a great worth ethic.
- Cleaning the smudges off the window: God wants to wash us clean with the water of the Word.
- Adding food coloring to pancakes (or cupcakes or cookie dough): a lesson about how what we take into our minds changes us. We need to carefully guard what we allow into our hearts and minds.
- A bird’s song on a cool, wet spring morning: a reminder to be thankful and sing praise to God for our blessings. The bird was outside, wet and cold, but still sings for another day and a bright sun to warm him.
There are so many more object lessons from life we can use as teaching opportunities. Everywhere you look, you see examples of God’s love, his greatness, and his principles for life. You just need to be mindful as you look around you.
Ask the Lord to help you look for those object lessons of life.
Ask for eyes to see the lesson and the words to share it with your child. It only takes a few extra seconds to do it. When done consistently, you teach your child to be one who expects to see God show up in mundane moments of life. These moment-by-moment conversations develop their desire to share the same lessons with others.
I have no greater joy than to hear that my children walk in truth. 3 John 1:7
Here is a link to sign up for our Teach Them Diligently newsletter to receive more great articles!
Teach Them Diligently 365 members, listen to:
If we homeschool simply to achieve high academic marks, we are squandering the opportunity to influence our children for Christ. Character healthy leaders are those children who have learned to elevate virtues above feelings. Check out the video for more information.
Become a member of Teach Them Diligently 365 for access to more!
Sign up for a free 7 day trial and explore the extensive content!
Let’s Go BEHIND-THE-SCENES to get to know Ray and Charlene Notgrass
After 22 years in church ministry, Ray and Charlene Notgrass decided to serve God in a different way by writing Bible curriculum for homeschoolers. At their first convention, a mother told us that she wished someone would write a Tennessee history, so they decided to write one and call it Exploring Tennessee. They included Bible study in it. Two years later Ray wrote Exploring America for high school. This time they included Bible and added literature. They kept listening to homeschooling parents and writing what they told us they wanted, first for high school and then for middle school and junior high. Now they are writing for grades 1-4 as well. Ray and Charlene believe that God has been preparing them since childhood to do what they are doing now. Their goal of writing Bible curriculum has grown into history curriculum that includes Bible and literature. Thus they are able to share God’s Word with many more homeschooling families. Charlene says, “It was His plan, not ours, and we love what we do.”
Did you know…
Ray and Charlene are personally connected to history stories they tell. Their ancestors include a French-Canadian fur trader who fought with the Continental Army during the American Revolution; pioneers who traveled through Cumberland Gap and on the Tennessee, Ohio, and Cumberland Rivers to found Nashville, Tennessee; and veterans who served during the Civil War, World War II, and the Korean War. They stand on the shoulders of Ray’s dad, who encouraged him to read great literature, and Charlene’s dad, who took her family to historic sites. Those formed the basis for how they taught their own children, what they like to do for fun (read great books and travel to historic sites), and how they write for other homeschooling families.
We think you’ll love them, too! :) Make your plans to stop by the Notgrass booth in Nashville, Atlanta and Myrtle Beach to say hi!
Special Offers for Teach Them Diligently families from Ray and Charlene Notgass.
Behind-The-Scenes With Author Cassandra Driver
Cassandra Driver was homeschooled all the way through school and self-published her first book at age eighteen. As she developed a love for reading while growing up, she rapidly realized there wasn’t an overabundance of clean books out there! This spurred her to try her hand at writing in order to put more wholesome and exciting stories on the shelves, particularly for young people, and the Lauren Series was born. Cassandra now has published 3 books in the Lauren Series with a 4th due out soon. Make sure you stop by and meet Cassandra at #TTDNashville!
David and I have gotten to be involved in some pretty amazing things over the 5 years we have worked on Teach Them Diligently. We stand amazed at the people God has brought across our path, the things we have been able to see, and the places we have been able to go. We get more excited each day as His plan for this ministry to families further unfolds before us.
The Museum of the Bible
Earlier this week, we had the incredible privilege to spend some time with several of the people who are working on what I believe to be one of the most important projects of our day– the Museum of the Bible, slated to open in November 2017 in Washington, DC. We were offered a “backstage” tour of some of the most incredible Biblical and historical artifacts imaginable. We were privileged to listen to the President of the Museum discuss the whys and hows of the museum, and when he related their mission to the 12 Stones that the Children of Israel brought out of the Jordan so they would never forget, I was even more convinced that we needed to be a big participant in this project. For much of our discipleship efforts center around making sure our children never forget all that God has done.
Those who know me will not be surprised to know that I was so overwhelmed as I walked through the door to the storage room that tears immediately welled up in my eyes, for I knew that I was among great things– things of historical and spiritual significance, things that God has used to change the world, and that I believe He will use again in our day through this exhibit. One of the main goals of Museum of the Bible is to help people to engage with the Bible, and I can tell you that I did so simply by seeing all those things on a shelf. I cannot even imagine the impact it will have when properly displayed in the museum.
I wish I had time to tell you about everything I learned and saw this week, but just beyond the doorway pictured above, there are thousands upon thousands of incredible pieces– Bibles, historical context pieces, manuscripts, and so much more– all lovingly and painstakingly collected to present a detailed picture of where our Bible came from, how God has used it through the years, how it has been preserved amidst unspeakable odds, and the power God’s Word still has in people’s lives in this day and age.
Here is why I care so much about this.
• Our world desperately needs the hope found in this Holy Book!
• Our children desperately need to know the stories of courage and miraculous intervention to keep God’s Word from passing away like so many other books throughout history.
• The homeschool opportunitites this project presents are extensive– I will have to write a complete post on that, for I am already planning to incorporate their resources into our school in the days ahead.
• People from all walks of life need to be engaged with the truth of the history of this Book. They need to be wowed by what God has done, and they need to have their eyes opened to the fact that God is still at work today.
I stood in awe of the thought that has gone into reaching our world through this new museum and how God has already opened doors for this to get started. It is their prayer and goal to get at least one million names engraved on their wall before they open– names of individuals who are invested and praying for this project and the impact it can have.
Here is where we all get involved– are you ready?!?
Every single family that registers for Teach Them Diligently will get to be involved! Teach Them Diligently is donating $5 from every registration we receive (or have received for 2016) to the Museum of the Bible in your name. We are that passionate about supporting this endeavor and getting as many people as we can involved in the process.
There are additional opportunities available to you, though! As the Lord lays it on your heart, please give above and beyond that $5 donation to support this important endeavor and then share this need with your friends. Any size gift you give through this link will open the door to include your name— up to 5 names for your family, in fact!– on the wall of 1 million names! How amazing will it be to have such a clear indication of your support for this world-changing Museum of the Bible.
“For as the rain and the snow come down from heaven and do not return there but water the earth, making it bring forth and sprout, giving seed to the sower and bread to the eater, so shall my word be that goes out from my mouth; it shall not return to me empty, but it shall accomplish that which I purpose, and shall succeed in the thing for which I sent it.” Isa 55:10-11