Wednesday, October 23, 2013

What's Working Wednesday: Learning Geography and Trying to Gain a Love for the Lost

What's Working Wednesday is my weekly post to showcase something that is working for me or my family at the moment. It may not work for us forever and it may or may not work for you.

I listened to Radical recently. I had borrowed it from the library on Overdrive. One of Platt's challenges at the end of the book was to pray through the nations of the world so we've started doing that in the mornings this fall.

We have a World map and a US map that hang on the walls in our dining room. On the maps there are flags for people that we know that live around the country and around the world. It gives my kids a personal connection to various places that they may never visit knowing the people that live there and having the opportunity to hear the stories that happen there. It's also handy having maps on the wall because whenever we hear news about some place in the world we can go to the map and look at it to see where that place is. (I really missed my maps when we were living out of our van.) My kids are being raised in the US (which was not my original plan, though it has been God's plan so far) but I want them to realize that the US is not the center of the universe.

There are three different apps or websites that we visit daily to help us learn geography and pray for people around the world:

1. VOM Pray Today App
This app (links to the app are on the bottom of the above linked website) gives one prayer request each day for persecuted followers of Jesus in restricted nations around the world. The prayer requests focus on one country for several days in a row. There is also a link to information about the country we are currently praying for and some news updates. Praying for these requests has made me very grateful for the freedom that we have in this country.

2. Joshua Project's Unreached People Groups
Caleb used this website often in doing research about various countries we studied a couple of years ago. They have an app that features one people group that is unreached with the gospel each day. You can also sign up to get the information emailed to you daily. There is information about the people groups giving a bit of their history, some of their struggles and a recommended prayer request. Praying for these requests has burdened me for people who don't have the gospel in their language and has made me so grateful for my Bible in my heart language.

3. Operation World Pray Today
If you go to this website daily and click on "Pray Today" you will learn about and pray for every nation in the world over the course of a year. This website has maps, flags, and statistics as well as challenges for prayer.

Every morning we read through the information, jot the countries' names down on a white board, find them on our map or globe and then pray over the requests. I know it has opened my eyes to the needs of the world and how blessed I am to have been born in the US and I'm praying it will impact our kids as well.

Bonus, non-religious, resources:
We are getting quicker at finding various countries on the map which is fun. A couple of other resources to help with learning geography that we enjoy are:

- World Geography Challenge - This is an app. You can look it up on your app store. I'm not sure how to link it. We have also used map puzzles on this website which has similar fun geography games. I am using these to try to help me know where countries are located. I really struggle with finding African and Eastern European countries and this app has helped.
Geography Songs
We LOVE these songs. We got this book and CD the year we tried Sonlight. We haven't found the CD since our move so we haven't listened to them in a while but they are great for helping to memorize country names and, using the maps in the book, the locations of said countries. We still sing many of the songs when we are looking for countries on our world map to give us a clue as to what part of the world we should be looking in.

What resources do you use to help learn about the world?

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