By Megan Miller, Editor
TRUSSVILLE – A fourth grade teacher by day, Trussville native Leslie Eaton has turned a blog into a movement for faith-based women.
Eaton now lives in Atlanta, and said that with the presence of mega-churches, many of these churches don’t offer adult Sunday school classes, which are instrumental in teaching believers how to study their bibles.
“I started doing it myself because it’s a way I can feel close to God,” Eaton said. “When you read your bible, sometimes He can feel so distant. You can’t have a relationship with someone unless you spend time with them and interact with them, and listen to their voice.”
This made her decide to gather a group of friends to study the bible, which transformed into Bible Stories From the Heart, which has an online following of more than 10,000. Bible Stories from the Heart has a series of adult coloring bible studies to help women read and understand the bible in a new way. The studies incorporate scripture study, reflective writing and meditative coloring pages.
“I consider it vacation bible school for adults, and I think that’s what they like about it,” Eaton said.
Eaton, who is a 1986 graduate of HTHS, is returning to Trussville for Christmas Joy: An Adult Coloring Bible Study. The event will take place Dec. 3 from 10 a.m.-noon at New Heights Christian Church.
“It’s cool for me that I get to come back,” Eaton said. “I hope that maybe I’ll see some familiar faces.”
Christmas Joy is the seventh book from Bible Stories from the Heart, and is a four-week study centering around the events leading up to the birth of Christ. Each lesson has scripture from the book of Luke, and has focus words and ways for the reader to connect the scripture to their daily lives. Lessons include discussion questions, a personal reflection activity and a coloring page with a specific theme from the lesson.
Eaton said bible coloring and journaling has become popular in the Christian world, and the event will incorporate an artist from Tuscaloosa that will teach participants techniques using primer and paint to make art inside their bible. Eaton said for those who don’t wish to write in their bible, there will also be a Christmas-themed craft.
Through Bible Stories from the Heart, Eaton said she’s noticed that often those who didn’t grow up in church or new believers don’t know how to read or study their bible, and Bible Stories from the Heart has changed that for many.
“I think what attracts people is partially due to the fact that I teach fourth grade, so I can teach them comprehensive strategies,” Eaton said. “I take one verse and walk them through it and how to make connections with God’s love in each verse, and how to make it personal.”
Registration for the event is $25 per person and includes a workbook and supplies. The event is open to participants ages 16 and older, of all skill levels. You can register for the event here.