For starters: What IS a widget? Many of you know our monthly widget as an “application tool,” a concrete, take-home item for families to use in practicing the month’s virtue. It might be a “Thank-You-tation” to thank someone during the month of Gratitude or “The Wrapper”—a sheet of wrapping paper to package a gift for someone who wouldn’t expect it—during our Generosity month. We’ve officially transitioned to the term “widget.” Why? Because it’s fun to say. Widget. Widget. Widget.
I digress.
We know that many of you hand out the widget during your Large Group or Small Group time—and that’s great! But at the heart of the matter, widgets aren’t just a quick giveaway; they’re designed for use by parents and kids together. A Family Experience (FX) with kids and parents in the same room is always the best context for demonstrating and handing out a widget. We even build a widget introduction into the FX welcome segment and offer an M.C. Haggis widget video on Get Reel 2.0 and the Studio 252 website. (For the uninitiated, M.C. Haggis is everyone’s favorite Scottish rapper.)
This month’s widget for self-control was the Game Changer wristband reading “game off” on one side and “game on” on the other. The key: When you feel your temperature rising and your self-control stretching, flip the band to “game off” until you can take a deep breath, pray, and plan your next words or actions. Then it’s “game on” again!
We received the following post on Orange Leaders’ from a Pastor of Family Ministries about the widget:
“We bought self-control bracelets for our ‘Family Fuel’ FX this month. Can I just say, best/worst thing that’s ever happened to me! 🙂 I thought I had some self-control. Clearly, I have none, but will have more by the end of this month!
“But, had to share that my newly six-year-old was wearing hers the other day when she was gearing up to go at it with her brother. Just when she was clearly about to blast him (and I was about to step in), I watched her flip her bracelet, close her eyes, pray, and then say, ‘Mom, I was going to just yell at Sawyer, but instead I used my self-control and it WORKED!’ BEST. TOOL. EVER.”
You can purchase the monthly widget in our online store (we keep them as inexpensive as possible), but most are simple enough for you to create your own version, if you prefer.
And that’s what a widget is.
Do you use the widgets? We’d love to hear your stories, too!