Archive for February 2013

40 days of Lent – Baptism of Jesus

And a voice from heaven said, “This is my loved Son, who brings me great joy.” Matthew 3:17

As I write this, it is the fourteenth day of Lent 2013. Last night our family read Spirit Lighting – day seven of Ann Voskamp’s Lent devotional Trail to the Tree.  Her seventeen day devotional bolsters our Lenten intentions. It may just be doable for us in forty days.

Did you know that Jesus was baptized?       Why would He do that?

Read Matthew 3: 13-17: His example of humble obedience brought great joy to His Father. The Spirit of God descended on Him.

What do we learn from this?        What do we teach our kids?

  • Worship – humbly acknowledging God as Father
  • Service – obedience to further His plan of righteousness
  • Power – joy-filled gifts descending on those He loves

Have you talked about baptism with your children?     Do they know why Christians do it?      Do you?

Lent is about preparing our hearts to be humble before God because of His great love and mercy to us through the death of His Son. Fasting, giving up comfort, removing distractions and living simpler lives are all ways Christians use to humble themselves. When we change our hearts through humility or weakness – we receive a greater glimpse of the Spirit of God descending upon us and among us.

Lent is about preparing our hearts with new skills of prayer, conversation about Him, reading His words, memorizing His words, making music to Him, creating art about Him or serving others in His name. When we change our hearts through obedience to His ways – we provide others a greater glimpse of the Spirit of God descending upon us and among us.

  • How can your family change one thing in order to worship together this week?
  • How can your family change one thing in order to serve each other or someone else this week?
  • How can your family change one thing in order share personal examples of power only His Spirit brings this week?

Our family is trying to change by removing distractions, reading Trail to the Tree devotions, and discussing Baptism this week. Our humble desire is to bring Him joy.




Vista Training Rooms – Restructure

What is a training room?

Close your eyes and what do you see?

1 Timothy 4:8 says “For physical training is of some value, but godliness has value for all things, holding promise for both the present life and the life to come.”

At Vista, we view our classrooms as training rooms. We as a church body seek to train ourselves, our families and our children in all personal growth areas: spiritual, emotional, physical, intellectual and social.

Our training rooms act as small group communities involving children, parents, volunteers, teachers, a coach and a staff person growing together in Christ. Following is a broad overview of the roles of each; more specifics will be shared in future posts.

  • Coaches use five primary tools to create community
  • Teachers prepare and teach materials to parents and children in all five personal growth areas
  • Parents encourage children, meet other parents and practice with parenting tools
  • Volunteers model godly practices to children and parents
  • Paid staff support teachers and facilitate training strategies

We are so thankful to have several people and families involved in training children and families at both Vista Dublin and Vista Worthington. We wanted to outline who is leading where, for your reference:


  • Meadowlands (Infants, Crawlers, Walkers, 2’s)
  • Base Camp (3’s & 4/5’s)
    • Coach: Sarah Kearney (kearneysj11@gmail.com)
    • Teachers (4/5’s): Kim & Haley Sutton, Sydney Hudock, LaRonda Stauffer, Mindy Sherry, & Melissa Thompson
    • Staff: Rebecca Frick & Morgan Douglass (3’s) & Amelia Ortman (4/5’s)
  • Climb
    • Coach: Cathy Harrison (cathy.harrison@live.com)
    • Teachers: Jeff Persall, Misty Hibbits, Donita Parizek & Caitlin Vandeveer, Stephanie Van Meter, Lisa Schaffner & Brandi Van Bourgondien
    • Staff: Andrew Forrest
  • Summit
    • Coach: Rebecca Owens (becowens_77@yahoo.com)
    • Teachers: Shelia Persall, Brent & Krysty Bower, Jay Hoey, & Christie Santa-Emma
    • Staff: Sarah Kinzeler
  • Rapids


  • Meadowlands (Infants, Toddlers)
  • 2/3’s
    • Coaches: Jack & Erika Irvin (erikairvin@gmail.com)
    • Teachers: Judy Albright, Mandy & William Tantarelli, & Emily Fetterman
    • Staff: Michelle Lawson
  • 4/5’s
    • Staff: Christina Kottenstette
  • Climb
    • Coach: Melinda Woody (amjocwoody@gmail.com)
    • Teachers: Jessica Hurtt & Brittany Woerth
    • Staff: Rachael Boyle & Joey Meinerding

Please pray with us for our leaders and the training and mentoring work they’re doing each week, to build into our families and children here at Vista.

40 Days of Lent – Ram in the Thicket

As a church family, Vista is focusing on Jubilee for the 40 days of Lent before Resurrection Sunday on March 31. The series is based off of Leviticus 25:10. Follow this link to the 40 days of Jubilee page, including resources, tools and a daily devotional. We invite you to look at the Vista Parents Blog 40 Days posts from previous years for encouragement and ideas to share with your family. Do this by clicking on ‘Archives’ to the right, then picking the month and year.

This year, Vista families will be following Ann Voskamp’s devotional Trail to the Tree. To download a copy, click here. (Note: you must scroll all the way down to the blue box, then click ‘subscribe’. After subscribing to Ann’s blog, you can scroll down to the bottom of any blog post and click on the link that says, “Free Easter/Lent devotional: The Trail to the Tree.”)

Each day has three different practices points:

  • Linger on the Word: daily readings from the Bible
  • Lift up your prayer to the Word: daily prayer guide for families to pray together
  • Live the Word: daily questions or activities to focus on Jesus

On day two of the devotional, she recommends reading Genesis 22:1-14. She spotlights the specific name of God used by Abraham when a ram was made available to replace the pending sacrifice of Isaac. Abraham names the place God-Yireh (jehovahjirah or Jehovah Jirah). When translated, this may mean “God sees to it.”

W. Ewing writes that “the best explanation of the text may be, Yahweh sees the needs of those who come to worship before Him on Zion, and there ‘is seen,’ revealing Himself to them by answering their prayers and supplying their wants” (International Standard Bible Encyclopedia).

Voskamp then asks the following question: “Today can you live in trust, knowing He will see-to-it. All of it?”

Here are some questions for your family to explore together:

  • What does a provider do?
  • Does your family know God as their provider?
  • How did God provide for you today or how was He the God that sees?
  • Does your family know God as one who “sees-to-it”?
  • How does this idea of Jehovah Jirah fit into how you talk about debt?

Please share any thoughts or feedback with us in the comments section, or share your family 40 Days photos on Facebook!