MONTHLY ARCHIVES: March 2015

Conversation Starters: Justice

Posted on March 25, 2015 by Karah

DSC_9747THE BIBLE MEETS LIFE: Justice is what most people look for in any society. Unfortunately, the reality of injustice is just as common. We all want justice when we’ve been wronged, but are we as ready to step up when it’s someone else needing justice? We cannot ignore injustice because our apathy or inaction is simply another form of injustice. We can’t right every wrong, but God calls us to be His champions for justice.

Concept: Justice 

Preschool

Judges 6-8

LIFE POINT: Some people called Midanites were hurting God’s people. The Midianites stole their crops. The people prayed for God’s help. One day as Gideon was working, an angel appeared to him. The angel called him a mighty warrior. The angel said that Gideon must lead his men to save his people from the Midianites. Gideon did not know how to do this, since he was not strong. “God will give you the victory,” the angel said. God chose the men who would go with Gideon by the way they drank water from a stream. Gideon had 300 men. Each man had a torch in a clay jar and a trumpet Gideon and his men surrounded the Midianites’ camp. It was dark and late. At the signal, the men
blew their trumpets and broke their jars. The Midianites were confused and ran away. Gideon and his men followed and defeated them. God had given them the victory!

LIVE IT OUT: Ask your child to name some things God wants people to do. Help her work to do what God says.

Kids

Judges 6-8

LIFE POINT: One day, God sent an angel to Gideon. “God sent me to tell you that He has heard your people praying and asking for His help,” the angel said. “You are the one God chose to help them.” Gideon said he did not have an army and that the Midianites were too strong. God announced that He would be with Gideon. God chose men to fight by the way they drank from a stream. Now Gideon had only 300 men. And the enemy had 120,000 men! God helped Gideon know what to do. Gideon gave every man a trumpet and an empty pitcher with a torch inside. He placed directed the men to surround the enemy camp. At Gideon’s signal, the men broke the pitchers and blew their trumpets. “The sword of the Lord and of Gideon!” they shouted. The enemy was frightened and began to fight one another. The battle was won!

LIVE IT OUT: Talk with your child about different choices she makes every day. Remind her that God wants her to make right choices. Pray with your child that she will make the choices God wants her to make.

Students

Exodus 23:1-3, 6-9

THE POINT: God wants us to defend those who can’t defend themselves. Discuss with your student some of the injustices you see in your community and how you can take action to help. Discuss the following quote:

“It takes great courage to open one’s heart and mind to the tremendous injustice and suffering in our world.”1 —Vincent A. Gallagher

LIVE IT OUT: Your student has been encouraged to do one or both Live It Out activities. Here are some suggested ways to help your student:

If your student plans to complete Called To Action:
• Help your student determine what social justice topic to research.
• Commit to serve alongside your student as they learn about this social injustice.

If your student plans to complete Do More:
• Encourage your student to stand up against bullying.
• Be an encouragement to students, or even other adults, who may be bullied in your community or church.

1. Vincent A. Gallagher, The Truth Cost of Low Prices: The Violence of Globalization (Maryknoll, NY: Orbis Book, 2006), 96.


Posted in Just For Parents | Tagged , , , | Leave a reply

Conversation Starters: Serving Others

Posted on March 18, 2015 by Karah

IMG_7365-001THE BIBLE MEETS LIFE: At the root of all our problems is a selfish bent, an emphasis on “what I want.” While it’s good to be a part of a church that will help us grow in Christ, sometimes we cross the line when we make the church all about what it can do for us personally. The church is to help us grow, but as a part of the body of Christ, we are also to be involved in serving and helping others grow.

Concept: Serving Others 

Preschool

Deuteronomy 4-6

LIFE POINT: The Israelites were getting ready to go into the land that God had promised them. Moses spoke to the people before they went into the land. Moses told the people to remember everything that God had done for them. He reminded the people that God had brought them out of Egypt and led them to the land that He had promised to give them. Moses reminded the people of the Ten Commandments that God had given them.
Moses told the people they must worship only the One true God. Moses said, “And this commandment is the greatest: love God with all your heart and all your strength. Teach these words to your children so that they will love God. God will bless your families for many years if you keep His commandments.”

LIVE IT OUT: With your child, look at a picture of your family. Lead her to do one kind thing this week for each person in the picture. Mention that it pleases God when we help our family.

Kids

Deuteronomy 4-6

LIFE POINT: The Israelites were getting ready to go into the land that God had promised them. Moses spoke to the people before they went into the land. Moses told the people to remember everything that God had done for them. He reminded the people that God had brought them out of Egypt and led them to the land that He had promised to give them. Moses reminded the people of the Ten Commandments that God had given them. He told the people they must worship only the One true God. Moses said, “And this commandment is the greatest: love God with all your heart, all your strength, and love your neighbor as yourself. Teach these words to your children, so that they will love Me. I will bless your families for many years if you keep my Commandments.”.

LIVE IT OUT: Draw a picture of your family. Promise to do at least one kind thing this week for each person in your picture.

Students

Ephesians 5:15-21

THE POINT: Serving in the body of Christ is a wise use of our time. Discuss your student’s current schedule. Ask: Is this a wise use of your time? Consider your own time. Are you using it to serve the body of Christ? Discuss the following quote:

Let your religion be less of a theory and more of a love affair.”1 —Gilbert K. Chesterton

LIVE IT OUT: Your student has been encouraged to do one or both Live It Out activities. Here are some suggested ways to help your student:

If he plans to complete Preferences:
•Reflect with your student on times when you’ve complained about preferences in your church.
•Determine to prioritize your real issues over preferences.

If he plans to do Appreciate Your Leader:
•Suggest ways your student can serve the leaders of your church.
•Pray with your student for your church leaders.

1. “G.K. Chesterton Quotes,” Goodreads, [cited March 20, 2014]. Available from the Internet: https://www.goodreads.com.


Posted in Just For Parents | Tagged , , , | Leave a reply

Conversation Starters: Spiritual Growth

Posted on March 11, 2015 by Karah

DSC_2629THE BIBLE MEETS LIFE: Rooted in the American dream is the idea of the self-made individual—a person who rises from a low level to become great. The self-made person, though, is a myth. No one can rise to any level without the help and support of others. That is certainly true in the church. God designed His church so that we need and support one another. Growth in Christ occurs in the context of connecting with other believers.

Concept: Spiritual Growth 

Preschool

Exodus 13:17- 5:21

LIFE POINT: Pharaoh told the people to leave Egypt. Moses led the people, God showed the way. God led by a cloud in the day and a fire at night. God told Moses to tell the people to camp. God knew Pharaoh would chase them. The Egyptians would see God’s power and know that God was the only God. Pharaoh came after the Israelites to bring them back to Egypt. When the people saw the Egyptians coming, they were frightened. Moses said, “Do not be afraid!” God told Moses, “Stretch your staff across the sea.” Moses obeyed, and God divided the sea with a great wind. The waters were piled up on either side, and the people walked across the sea on dry land! When the people were safe, God told Moses to stretch his hand out again. The waters of the sea came back together. God had saved the people. The people were happy and sang a song to God.

LIVE IT OUT: Talk about how adults hold preschoolers’ hands as they cross a busy street. Ask your child why they think that happens. Help him understand that even though we can’t see God, we can trust God to take care of us even when we are scared.

Kids

Exodus 13:17-15:21

LIFE POINT: Pharaoh told the people to leave Egypt. Moses led the people as God showed the way. God led by a cloud in the day and a fire at night. God told Moses to tell the people to camp. God knew Pharaoh would chase them. The Egyptians would see God’s power and know that God was the only God. Pharaoh came after the Israelites to bring them back to Egypt. When the people saw the Egyptians coming, they were frightened. Moses said, “Do not be afraid!” God told Moses, “Stretch your staff across the sea.” Moses obeyed, and God divided the sea with a great wind. The waters were piled up on either side, and the people walked across the sea on dry land! When the people were safe, God told Moses to stretch out his hand again. The waters of the sea came back together. God had saved the people. The people were happy and sang a song to God.

LIVE IT OUT: Talk about how adults hold children’s hands as they cross a busy street. Ask your child why they think that happens. Help him understand that even though we can’t see God, we can trust God to take care of us even when we are scared.

Students

Ephesians 4:11-16

THE POINT: Use your gifts to build up the community of faith. What are your gifts? How are you using them to build up the church? Discuss the following quote:

“It is only when men begin to worship that they begin to grow.”1 —Calvin Coolidge

LIVE IT OUT: Encourage your student to do one or both Live It Out activities. Here are some suggested ways to help:

If he plans to complete Learn to Serve:
•Point out to your student places of service within the church.
•Search out opportunities and commit to serve with your student.

If he plans to do Find a Mentor:
•Encourage your student to seek a mentor.
•Consider being a mentor.

1. Lewis C. Henry, ed. 5000 Quotations for All Occasions (Philadelphia, PA: The Blackiston Company, 1945), 319.


Posted in Just For Parents | Tagged , , , | Leave a reply

Conversation Starters: Temptation

Posted on March 4, 2015 by Karah

IMG_0506THE BIBLE MEETS LIFE: Sin is so enticing and compelling on the front end; but afterward, as we face the consequences of giving in, we see our sin from a different perspective. It is in the aftermath that we often ask ourselves with regret, “Why did I give in?” Through the life of Joseph, the Bible gives us an example of how the Holy Spirit moves us beyond temptation to make the right choice.

Topic: Temptation 

Preschool

Genesis 39

LIFE POINT: Joseph had been taken to Potiphar’s house in Egypt to work as a servant. Potiphar was an important officer in Pharaoh’s army. God took care of Joseph. God helped Joseph become successful. Potiphar liked Joseph, and soon he became Potiphar’s helper. Potiphar put Joseph in charge of his whole house and all his business. Potiphar trusted Joseph. Potiphar did not have to worry about anything. God blessed Potiphar’s house because of Joseph. Potiphar’s wife liked Joseph, too. She wanted Joseph to make a wrong choice. But Joseph said no. So Potiphar’s wife told a lie about Joseph to Potiphar. Even though Potiphar trusted Joseph, he believed his wife. He sent Joseph to Pharaoh’s prison.

LIVE IT OUT: Help your preschooler think of times he has been tempted to do wrong things (not sharing, disobeying, telling a lie, etc.). Remind him that God is always with him and can help him make the right choice.

Kids

Genesis 39

LIFE POINT: In Egypt, Joseph was sold to Potiphar. Potiphar was an important officer of the king. God helped Joseph to do his job as a slave well. Potiphar saw that everything Joseph did turned out good. He put Joseph in charge of all he owned. Potiphar’s wife liked Joseph, too. But she tried to get Joseph to do something wrong. She grew angry when Joseph would not do what she wanted. Potiphar’s wife told lies about Joseph. Potiphar was very angry. Even though Potiphar trusted Joseph, he believed his wife. He had Joseph thrown in prison. God was good to Joseph even in prison. The guard liked Joseph. He put Joseph in charge of all the other prisoners.

LIVE IT OUT: Help your child think of times he’s been tempted to do wrong things (examples: not sharing, disobeying, telling a lie). Remind him that God is always with him and can help him make the right choice.

Students

Genesis 39:3-12

THE POINT: It’s easier to fight temptation when you’re pursuing God’s purposes. What temptation do you struggle with? Discuss with your student a time when you overcame temptation. Discuss the following quote:

“Sin always seems ‘good, and pleasant, and desirable,’ at the time of commission.”1 —J. C. Ryle

LIVE IT OUT: Your student has been encouraged to do one or both Live It Out activities. Here are some suggested ways to help your student:

If he plans to complete Know Temptation:
•Discuss with your student some of his or her current struggles with temptation.
•Share with your student a favorite verse that helps you overcome temptation.

If he plans to do It Is Written:
•Help your student identify areas where he or she struggles with temptation.
•Guide your student to “It is Written” Scripture verses to help with these struggles.

1. J. C. Ryle, The Priest, The Puritan, and The Preacher (New York, NY: Robert Carter and Brother, 1856), 237.


Posted in Just For Parents | Tagged , , , | Leave a reply