Monday, December 27, 2010

our jesse tree

this christmas season, we didn't light our advent candles like we have the past few years. we decided to do a jesse tree. i've actually never heard of a jesse tree before this year. i don't know if it was the new trendy thing to do or not (or i'm just way out of the loop... which is entirely possible), but it seemed like we were hearing about it everywhere all the sudden. we got curious, googled it, and decided to start a new family tradition.
the jesse tree starts on december first (like an advent calendar) and each day you read a bible story, starting at creation leading all the way up to Christ. it gives you a chance to look at not just the christmas story, but the whole story of God providing for, loving, and saving His people. if you don't know the whole story, the christmas story doesn't make too much sense.
ideally, you have a little ornament to symbolize each story and hang it on a little christmas tree, but, in true wade family fashion, we decided to give the jesse tree a whirl on the evening of november 30th. so we didn't have a tree and ornaments. what we did have was construction paper, scissors, glue, colored pencils, and a bare wall. this was the result:

i think it came out pretty well!

i know christmas is over and done with for 2010, but you can find more information about the jesse tree and see the list of stories here if you're interested for next year. we actually tweaked the story list a little bit, and i'm sure we'll continue to tweak it throughout the years (one year you could focus on prophecy, the next on God's provision, etc. this year we focused on salvation, the prophets, and God's promises collectively), but i wanted to share our list of stories with you.

1. Creation~Genesis 1:1-2:3

2. The Fall~ Gen. 2:4-3:13 (promise of salvation)

3. Noah's Ark~Gen. 6:11-9:17 (promise)

4. Abraham~Gen. 12:1-15:6 (promise)

5. Isaac~ Gen. 22:1-19 (promise, salvation)

6. Jacob and Esau~ Gen. 25:23 (promise)

7. Joseph~Gen. 37-46 (salvation)

8. Moses~Exodus 1-11 (salvation)

9. The First Passover~Ex. 12:1-14:31 (salvation)

10. The Ten Commandments~Ex. 19:1-20:20

11. The Snake on the Cross~Ex. 21 (salvation)

12. Gideon~ Judges 2:6-8:28 (salvation)

13. Samuel~ 1 Samuel 1 (prophet)

14. David~ 1 Sam. 16:1-17:58, 2 Sam. 5:1-7:17

15. Solomon's Temple~ 1 Kings 5-7 (promise)

16. Elisha and the Widow~ 2 Kings 4 (prophet)

17. Jonah~ Jonah (prophet)

18. The Suffering Servant~ Isaiah 53:4-5 (prophet, promise, salvation)

19. Anticipation~Luke 1:57-80 (promise)

20. Mary and Gabriel~Luke 2:1-20 (promise)

21. Bethlehem~ Micah 5:2 (prophet)

22. Shepherds~Luke 2:1-20

23. Wisemen~Matthew 2

24. The Birth of Jesus~ Luke 2:1-20 (promise, salvation)

25. The Son of God~ John 1:1-18 (promise, salvation)

a lot of these passages are pretty long, way too long for our little ones, so most of the stories we read out of their children's bible. they really enjoyed taking turns taping the ornaments up and they were really absorbing the stories. i'll be honest, we grown-ups learned a lot, too. i'm already looking forward to how it'll work out next year! hope everyone had a wonderful christmas!


Jill said...

The picture you posted didn't come through on my computer but it may have on others.

We did Jesse Tree for the second time this year and we enjoyed it. I agree that some of the passages are a little too lengthy. I like your idea to just read them from a children's Bible.

And your Christmas tree from the post earlier is really pretty. When we were in Macedonia I only had a mini Christmas tree so yours looks great in comparison:)

Merry Christmas & Happy New Year!

The Renfrows said...

Merry Christmas! I love this idea. I'm definitely going to have to try it out next year. Thanks for sharing!

Adrienne said...

Thank you so much for posting this! I, too, decided it would be a good idea to do a Jesse Tree, but didn't think to use construction paper. (That would have to be sent to us, since this country owns none). Anyway, I LOVE what your tree looks like....and I love the ideas of using the child Bible when they are so young! I will definitely do this next year.....or even the start of this one!