ELS Studio Week of December 16th

Wow, what an exhibition.  The heroes did such a wonderful job with the play today,

They practiced the last two days, including the ES studio.

The heroes did a snow and winter craft on Monday for project time and on Tuesday spent the whole project time practicing the play.

Today they had their Secret Santa exchange, the Hero Buck store and practiced the carols before the exhibition,

Thank you to all the parents that came today.

Thank you to Simon’s grandfather who helped Simon build the manger.

Thank you to Stella’s dad for allowing the heroes to borrow his sound equipment.

Thank you to the moms that put on the party after the exhibition.

I wish you and your family a wonderful and safe Christmas break.



ES Exhibition Week!

Week 17: December 16 – 18

Exhibition Week!!

What an amazing week! In the midst of being three days away from Christmas break, the heroes demonstrated a huge amount of effort. They not only persevered through their Christmas anticipation, but they also focused on going after their session goals and finalized their preparations for their exhibition. Talk about rigorous hard work and grit in the midst of so much distraction!

Thank you to everyone who was able to come out to the exhibition! The hard work of the heroes radiated from their performance. The joy of their faces was delightful to see and experience because it demonstrated their intrinsic satisfaction in all the effort, energy, time, and care that they have devoted the past two and a half weeks.


At the exhibition, the heroes shared some of the Bible verses they have been memorizing. The passages they shared connect with telling people about the Gospel. I encourage you to memorize them too! John 3:16, Romans 3:23, Romans 6:23, 1 Corinthians 15:3-4, 2 Corinthians 5:17, Hebrews 13:5, Ephesians 2:8-9, and 1 John 1:9.


The heroes shared their spiritual journeys and testimonys. Praise God for their salvation and the stories the Lord is writing in their life. They are finding their calling to change the world!


In the “Everything” skit, performed to the song “Everything” by Lifehouse, we see God creating humans and showing them his beautiful creation in the Garden of Eden. God and “Girl’s” relationship is beautiful.


The problem comes with sin and worldly desires. The distractions of sin harm “Girl’s” relationship with God, and sin separates “Girl” from God.  Some of the things that got in the way during the heroes’ skit were “worldly relationships,” “money,” “social media,” and “gossip.” John 3:16, Romans 3:23, and Romans 6:23.


Finally, after being hurt and broken, “Girl” decides that God is all she wants. She struggles to go to God, but sin tries desperately to keep her away.


Because sin is separating “Girl” from God, God sends his one and only son to earth to take our place on the cross and bridge the gap between us and God. Jesus Christ died, taking our sins upon himself, and now we can be healed if we confess we are a sinner, believe Jesus died for our sins, and accept Jesus’ invitation to have him come into our heart and follow him. When we do this, we are washed clean, and we receive a new heart. Our relationship with God is restored because when God looks at us, he sees Jesus, who died in our place even though he is holy and blameless. Therefore, we are adopted as God’s children! 1 Corinthians 15:3-4, 2 Corinthians 5:17, Hebrews 13:5, Ephesians 2:8-9, and 1 John 1:9.


With sin defeated, God and “Girl” have a restored and beautiful relationship.


1 Corinthians 3:5-7 What, after all, is Apollos? And what is Paul? Only servants, through whom you came to believe—as the Lord has assigned to each his task. I planted the seed, Apollos watered it, but God has been making it grow. So neither the one who plants nor the one who waters is anything, but only God, who makes things grow.”


Have you asked your hero:

  • What are you most proud of this quest?
  • What is one thing that you would do differently from the exhibition?
  • Were there any goals from this past session that you did not reach? What prevented you from reaching those goals?
  • What goals for next session would you like to set in your programs?
  • What books would you like to read over break?
  • What craft/art projects would you like to do over break?
  • What fun activities would you like to do over break?
  • Who could you share the Gospel with over break?
  • Have you asked God what He wants you to put on your “To Do List” today?

Merry Christmas! Have a wonderful break filled with the joy of the Lord!

ELS studio week of December 9

  The heroes continue to practice the play.  Wondering what this part is?  Come to the play next week on Wednesday.

  This part is very precious.

The heroes have also been creating Christmas crafts, such as graham cracker “stables”, kind of like a gingerbread house.

They also created stars and Christmas trees, trying to make the star and Christmas tree 3-D.  They created Christmas ornaments as well.

The heroes are very excited about next week and presenting their play.  See everyone on Wednesday.



ES Sharing the Good News of Jesus

Week 16: December 9 – 13

ES Sharing the Good News of Jesus

Continuing our quest on the Gospel, the heroes practiced sharing the Gospel with others. Bookmarks with the Gospel colors, Bible passages, and a Gospel skit are some of the ways the heroes are preparing to share the Good News of Jesus.


  • Gold page (heaven)
  • Dark page (sin)
  • Red page (Christ’s blood shed on the cross in our place)
  • Clean page (Jesus washing us clean when we confess we are a sinner, believe Jesus died for our sin, and accept his invitation to have him into our heart)
  • Green page (growing in Christ)


Pastor Kevin Baker from Ada Bible, Knapp Street campus, came to Journey for a Hero Talk. He presented one method for how to explain the Gospel to other people.


Kevin Baker shared this illustration for explaining the Gospel to others: God’s design is perfect, but there is a problem: sin. Because of sin, we are broken people even though we try to fix our brokenness. However, we cannot fix the brokenness on our own. When we repent and believe, the saving grace of Jesus is the cure for our brokenness. God repairs our relationship with him, and we can pursue God’s original design.


What/who has impacted your spiritual journey in the past? Where are you on your spiritual journey today? What/who would you like to be impacting your spiritual journey in the future?


Polar Express Quote-Along Night!! The heroes had a blast watching Polar Express and engaging with interactive activities and games with their friends. Thanks for sharing your heroes with us for an evening, parents!


What is the One Verse Evangelism? Using Romans 6:23, the heroes practiced sharing the Gospel with others using this verse and an illustration. “For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.”


Thank you, Miss Sarah, for making candles with us!! Such a fun project!


The fruit of the Spirit is evidence that we are saved! “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.” Galatians 5:22-23a


Such talent and creativity our heroes have! Practicing and refining our “Everything Skit” has been a joy and delight! We are so excited to share this Gospel presentation at the Exhibition.


Making a board game is one option for the heroes to choose when creating a deep book review.


Have you asked your hero:

  • Were there any programs that you did not set goals for this week?
  • What distractions did you face this week?
  • What is the most challenging part of your role in the “Everything” Gospel skit?
  • What Session 3 goal do you really want to focus on reaching next week?
  • If you were in a new situation around new people, would you either a.) do whatever you needed to do to be accepted and included? Or b.) show up and be yourself? If the new group of people did not accept you, what emotions would you be feeling with your choice (a or b)?

See you next week!

ELS studio week of Dec 2

The heroes have had a busy week.

Each day they practiced the play, including singing the songs and saying their lines.

Wednesday the dads had a special morning and enjoyed some doughnuts and games.

Level M’s have been writing their version of the Nativity story and the Level 1’s have been learning about poetry during writing time.

The heroes raised over $600 to buy gifts for a family of 10 children.  Today they went to Target and bought the gifts.  Once back at the Academy the heroes wrapped the gifts and had some pizza for lunch.

A HUGE thank you for the parents that organized the foster family shopping trip and for the pizza today.  The heroes were so excited about buying the gifts and wrapping them.

The heroes have also been making Christmas crafts, including coloring a gingerbread house to use for the play, making and learning the Driedal game,  creating some Christmas cards for the family and their own family, and making a wrapping paper chain to tell how many days there are to Christmas.

The Gospel, Donuts with Dad, and Our Service Project in ES

Week 15: December 2 – 6

The Gospel, Donuts with Dad, and Our Service Project

A joy-filled week! The Good News of Jesus, quality time with dads and grandpas, and blessing a family in Grand Rapids through our D.A. Blodgett-St. John’s Hospital Holiday Giving service project started off our Faith Quest this week.


The heroes created and practiced multiple different methods for explaining the Gospel. Colorful Wordless Books, Tear and Share with paper, and One Verse Evangelism using Romans 6:23 were a few of the methods. We learned about Saul’s conversion in Acts 9 as well as Philip leading the Ethiopian Eunuch to Christ in Acts 8.

The heroes are working on memorizing the Bible verses that go with the Wordless Book: John 3:16, Romans 3:23, Romans 6:23, Hebrews 13:5, 1 Corinthians 15:3-4, 2 Corinthians 5:17, Ephesians 2:8-9, and 1 John 1:9. I encourage you to memorize the verses with your hero!


Donuts with Dad was a blast! Thank you to all the dads and grandpas that came to enjoy time with their heroes at school! We love our dads!


Thank you, thank you, thank you for all the financial donations for our service project! Together, we surpassed our goal! The heroes radiated joy as they shopped and wrapping gifts for the family in need. It truly is better to give than to receive!


Next week, we will be starting a skit that shares the Gospel.


Have you asked your hero:

  • What challenge (if any) did you not accomplish this week?
  • What was the most difficult challenge for you this week and why?
  • What do you think Heaven is like? What does Scripture say Heaven is like?
  • Why can sin not be in Heaven?
  • What is sin?
  • Have you ever made the most important decision that you’ll ever make in your life – the decision to follow Jesus? (The ABC backwards prayer: Confess you are a sinner and need saving, believe that Jesus died for your sins on the cross, and ask for Jesus to wash your heart clean and come live in your heart)
  • Is there evidence to know if we are saved or not? (Hint: fruit)
  • What does each page in the Wordless Book represent? (gold, dark, red, clean, green)
  • What was the best part for you about buying and wrapping Christmas gifts for the family in our service project? How does it feel to help a family in need?

See you next week!