Though the fig tree may not blossom, nor fruit be on the vines; though the labor of the olive may fail, and the fields yield no food; though the flock may be cut off from the fold, and there be no herd in the stalls– yet I will rejoice in the Lord, I will joy in the God of my salvation. The Lord God is my strength; He will make my feet like deer’s feet, and He will make me walk on my high hills.
To the Chief Musician with my stringed instruments.
A Song of Ascents.
Blessed is every one who fears the Lord, who walks in His ways. When you eat the labor of your hands, you shall be happy, and it shall be well with you. Your wife shall be life a fruitful vine in the very heart of your house, your children like olive plants all around your table. Behold, thus shall the man be blessed who fears the Lord. The Lord bless you out of Zion, and may you see the good of Jerusalem all the days of your life. Yes, may you see your children’s children.
Peace be upon Israel!
(the following verses are some that my children specifically wanted to comment and meditate on)
(1) A man who isolates himself seeks his own desire; he rages against all wise judgment.
(2) A fool has no delight in understanding, but in expressing his own heart.
(7) A fool’s mouth is his destruction, and his lips are the snare of his soul.
(9) He who is slothful in his work is a brother to him who is a great destroyer.
(10) The name of the Lord is a strong tower; the righteous run to it and are safe.
(14) The spirit of a man will sustain him in sickness, but who can bear a broken spirit?
(15) The heart of the prudent acquires knowledge, and the ear of the wise seeks knowledge.
(19) A brother offended is harder to win than a strong city, and contentions are like the bars of a castle.
(24) A man who has friends but himself be friendly, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother.
2 Samuel 6:1-23
The kids thought it was interesting to revisit the Ark of the Covenant, and to observe the behavior of King David. We discussed behaviors of political rulers, and the overlapping of political & religious realms. We talked about the use of music and feasting in both political & religious events.
Hymn of the Month (January)
All The Way My Savior Leads Me
Psalm of the Month (January)
Psalm 148 (Book of Psalms for Singing)
Psalm 100 (Old Hundredth)
Psalm 8 (Erb)
Fruits of the Spirit (Erb)
Books of the Bible (Soles)
Kings of Israel (Soles)
All the kids:
The Odyssey, lines 1-20, by Homer
Of the cunning hero,
The wanderer, blown off course time and again
After he plundered Troy’s sacred heights.
Speak of all the cities he saw, the minds he grasped,
The suffering deep in his heart at sea
As he struggled to survive and bring his men home
But could not save them, hard as he tried–
The fools– destroyed by their own recklessness
When they ate the oxen of Hyperion the Sun,
And that god snuffed out their day of return.
Of these things,
Speak, Immortal One,
And tell the tale once more in our time.
By now, all the others who had fought at Troy–
At least those who had survived the war and the sea–
Were safely back home. Only Odysseus
Still longed to return to his home and his wife.
The nymph Calypso, a powerful goddess–
And beautiful– was clinging to him
In her caverns and yearned to possess him.
All the kids:
Eternity, by William Blake
He who binds to himself a joy
Does the winged life destroy
He who kisses the joy as it flies
Lives in eternity’s sunshine
Winter Morning by Ogden Nash
Winter is the king of showmen,
Turning tree stumps into snow men
And houses into birthday cakes
And spreading sugar over lakes.
Smooth and clean and frosty white,
The world looks good enough to bite.
That’s the season to be young,
Catching snowflakes on your tongue.
Snow is snowy when it’s snowing,
I’m sorry it’s slushy when it’s going.
Spellbound by Emily Brontë
The night is darkening round me,
The wild winds coldly blow;
But a tyrant spell has bound me
And I cannot, cannot go.
The giant trees are bending
Their bare boughs weighed with snow,
And the storm is fast descending
And yet I cannot go.
Clouds beyond clouds above me,
Wastes beyond wastes below;
But nothing drear can move me;
I will not, cannot go.
Winter Time by Robert Louis Stevenson
Late lies the wintry sun a-bed,
A frosty, fiery sleepy-head;
Blinks but an hour or two; and then,
A blood-red orange, sets again.
Before the stars have left the skies,
At morning in the dark I rise;
And shivering in my nakedness,
By the cold candle, bathe and dress.
Close by the jolly fire I sit
To warm my frozen bones a bit;
Or with a reindeer-sled, explore
The colder countries round the door.
When to go out, my nurse doth wrap
Me in my comforter and cap,
The cold wind burns my face, and blows
Its frosty pepper up my nose.
Black are my steps on silver sod;
Thick blows my frosty breath abroad;
And tree and house and hill and lake
Are frosted like a wedding-cake.
White Fields by James Stephens
In winter-time we go
Walking in the fields of snow;
Where there is no grass at all;
Where the top of every wall,
Every fence, and every tree
Is as white as white can be.
Pointing out the way we came–
Every one of them the same–
All across the fields there be
Prints in silver filigree;
And our mothers always know,
By the footprints in the snow,
Where it is the children go.
Three kids working on New City Catechism:
Question 11. What does God require in the sixth, seventh, and eighth commandments?
A. Sixth, that we do not hurt, or hate, or be hostile to our neighbor, but be patient and peaceful, pursuing even our enemies with love. Seventh, that we abstain from sexual immorality and live purely and faithfully, whether in marriage or in single life, avoiding all impure actions, looks, words, thoughts, or desires, and whatever might lead to them. Eighth, that we do not take without permission that which belongs to someone else, nor withhold any good from someone we might benefit.
Question 48. What is the church?
A. God chooses and preserves for Himself a community elected for eternal life and united by faith, who love, follow, learn from, and worship God together. God sends out this community to proclaim the gospel and prefigure Christ’s kingdom by the quality of their life together and their love for one another.
One child in the Westminster Shorter Catechism for Children:
Question 66. How is Christ a prophet?
A. Because He teaches us the will of God.
One child in the Small Children’s Catechism:
Question 1. Who made you?
The Door at the End of the World by Caroline Carlson
Pages of History, Volume 1 by Etter and Detweiler
Radiant by Richard Hannula