Tending the Garden of Our Hearts: Daily Lenten Meditations for Families

Length: 7 hrs and 15 mins
5.0 out of 5 stars (9 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

Are you looking for a way to keep your family engaged in the true spiritual nourishment Lent has to offer? Tending the Garden of Our Hearts offers family devotions based on the Scriptures for each day of Great Lent, including questions to discuss and ponder and an appendix full of hands-on activities to bring the lessons of the season to life. Whether you use it every day or dip into it occasionally as time permits, this book will help the whole family get more out of this crucial season of the Orthodox year.

©2019 Elissa Bjeletich and Kristina Wenger (P)2019 Elissa Bjeletich and Kristina Wenger

What listeners say about Tending the Garden of Our Hearts: Daily Lenten Meditations for Families

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AMAZING SET OF STORIES

Great stories of some of the saints and how they strove towards living a pious life that is acceptable to the Lord. I really enjoyed.

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Great book, wonderful narration

Tending the Gardens of our Hearts: Daily Lenten Meditations for Families, by Elissa Bjeletich and Kristina Wenger is a simple yet profound devotional for Orthodox families, guiding them through spiritual growth during Great Lent. The book is didvided into 7 chapters, corresponding with the weeks of Lent and Holy Pacsha Week. Each day reading is narrated in 25-30 minutes which makes for a short yet a deep devotional time for families. A variety of biblical reading, saint stories or church father commentaries all build and emphasize the theme of the week; Orthodoxy, Prayers, The ladder/Almsgiving, among others direct our thoughts and prayers during lent to the important things in life, to raise our hearts to God and grow in our spiritual life. While the narrative is simple enough for the little ones to understand and follow, it is still profound enough for adults to reflect upon the lessons provided and learn and grow as well. If you get busy and miss a day, it’s ok to skip that lesson and move to the next one. Life is too busy and you can’t slow down, listen to the daily devotional during your morning car ride and talk with your children about the lesson they just heard and how can they practice it during their day at school. One final thought, don’t skip the crafts and activities section but try some with your school age children.

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Great tool for families!

To begin my review, I feel like I should share a little about our family. I have 6 daughters ages 13,12,9,8,7 and 3. I was hesitant to get this book because I was afraid it was going to make me feel inadequate, one more holy thing I should be doing for my kids during Lent. But I was pleasantly surprised that the readings did not seem too daunting. I listened to the book in several different situations in order to get a good feel for how I would use it during Lent. I listened to the majority of the book on my own, sometimes out loud. My kids would sometimes stop and listen and even ask questions afterwards. My 8 year old made me pull up videos of the Holy Fire. The car ended up being the best place for listening! The kids were already seated and were a captive audience. My 12 and 13 year olds said that they enjoyed the reading and were able to answer the questions at the end. They said that they didn’t mind listening. “It wasn’t bad,” was there very descriptive response. I also had my 9,8,7 and 3 year olds listen in the car. My 9 and 8 year old were able to follow along pretty well, my 7 year old had a little more trouble paying attention. My 3 year old played, but she obviously heard some of it because she proudly answer “Jesus!” to all the questions. I was surprised when my 9,8, and 7 year old were also able to answer the questions. My kids really enjoy listening to books during car trips, so this will be a great addition for Lent. Also, having something to listen too just feels easier than having to sit down and read something out loud. I like easy! One surprise of the book was that I really enjoyed it just for myself. It was very pleasant to listen too and the readings each day were just enough to help get me focused on Christ and feel more empowered to guide my children through Lent. I also really enjoyed the ideas for each week at the end of the book. The ideas were so simple, you don’t have to be a Pinterest Queen to be able to do them with your children. Many of them I am looking forward to doing with my kids each Lent. I love that the authors provide many different ideas, so if one doesn’t sound like it would work for the family, there are still other ideas to choose from. My only complaints have nothing to do with the book itself, but with Audible. There are no written chapter titles. So while I knew what number chapter I was listening to, I couldn’t just look and click on Week 3 Monday. It would also be nice to have titles for the Appendix section so that I would know where to click to get the ideas for each week. I’m sure I can do the math and count, but it would still be nice to have things labeled. But like I said, that’s an Audible thing and has nothing to do with the authors. Overall I thought this was a great book. I learned so many things that I didn’t know (I joined the Orthodox church 7 years ago). I look forward to having this tool in my mom tool belt each year for Lent! I received a free copy of this audiobook in exchange for an honest review.

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A Lenten Nessesity for families

We listen and read this book at dinner during lent. The kids actually really look forward to it. I especialy appreciate the kid appropriate questions at the end because I sometimes stumble at speaking about religious things in a simple way. I suggest Keeping this book in you Lenten tool bags.