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Personal Reflections from the Chronicles of Belteshazzar: The Story Begins

Date: 09.29.2022

Written By

David Lantz

Personal Reflections from the Chronicles of Belteshazzar: The Story Begins

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Thinking back on those years when I was a young father, they were not the best times for my own career.  In the movie, Meet the Robinsons, we see that a way to deal with failure is to keep moving forward.

Sharing ideas and helping children learn can be a fun thing to do.  When I was in first and second grade – just before the Supreme Court outlawed prayer in school – there was a lady that would come to my elementary school once a week to teach about the Bible.  She used flannel boards and maps.  She made the stories interesting!  My Sunday School teachers at church never did anything like that.

When my kids were little, we acted out many of the stories from the bible.  When I would teach children in the 4 – 6-year age group at my church on Sunday mornings, I would do the same thing – every child wanted to be the main character in the bible story, so of course we had to repeat the story several times!

Creating Bible Research Projects for your Children/Grandchildren

As children grow and mature, finding ways to tell these stories and even dig into the history of the time-period can be a way to learn about the bible and how God’s word is applicable in both ancient and modern times.

In Chapter 3, Grandpa sets the stage for the opening of the story.  The year is 605 B.C., a year in which three things happened.  First, Babylon defeated Egypt in a battle at a place called Carchemish.  It is near the source of the Euphrates River and lies on an ancient trade route that Marco Polo traveled on his journey to China.  The modern Syrian city of Aleppo is near where that battle took place.  The second event that happened in that year was that King Nabopolassar of Babylon died.  Nebuchadnezzar, who was leading the Babylonian army at Carchemish, cut short his campaign against Egypt and returned to Babylon.  The third thing that happened is that the Prophet Jeremiah issued his prophecy that Judah would be carried into Babylonian exile for a period of 70 years.  You can read about that in Chapter 25 of Jeremiah.

The problem here that I am thinking about is how to help the reader picture the historical and geographical setting of the events that are about to take place in the novel.  You can turn this into a project for you and your kids/grandkids.  A simple thing to do is find a bible with maps in the appendix and look at them.

Teaching Your Kids How to Deal with Failure

Thinking back on those years when I was a young father, they were not the best times for my own career.  In the movie, Meet the Robinsons, we see that a way to deal with failure is to keep moving forward.  I remember when I was in my early 30s.  I felt like a failure, as I had attempted to start a newsletter and consulting business, and it had totally gone bust.  One of the few things I got a sense of accomplishment out of was coaching my son Jason’s soccer team.  I coached various sports that all three of my children were involved in, but when it came to soccer, Jason was a natural athlete.  I know that during that time, when my career was in the tank so to speak, that was a key experience that helped me to “keep moving forward.” 

Over the years Jason went on to play soccer at the high school and college level.  As an adult, he has become a certified soccer referee, and has been the athletic director at several schools where he teaches.  One year, I even got to coach my grandson Isaac’s soccer team when Jason and his family were living close to us.

That, to me, is the greatest thing about family – to be connected to the ones you love and be involved in their lives.  As a grandfather, leaving a legacy for my grandchildren is one of the most important things I feel I can do at this stage of life.  I know they want to hear stories of their parents when they were kids.  And, as they get older, they will value hearing that their grandfather sometimes failed, and that the world doesn’t end when that happens – so that they, too, can keep moving forward. I hope this story has inspired you to do the same with your own children and grandchildren.

Question for Reflection

This brings me to a discussion question you might wish to have with your kids or grandkids, or the next time you’re at the dinner table and you’re having a discussion about those big questions in life.  Here’s the “Question for Reflection”:

Have you ever thought about sitting down to watch a movie with your kids/grandkids, and then find a way to talk about at least one lesson from your life that can connect to a scene from the movie?

Written by David Lantz. Please consider sharing this post with others.

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