MONTHLY ARCHIVES: November 2015

Conversation Starters: Prayer and Fasting

Posted on November 18, 2015 by Karah

a6323a43-adc9-44ed-aa06-3e14348b9c25THE BIBLE MEETS LIFE: Do you ever wish you could just get away? Your schedule is slammed. You can barely keep up. And your perspective on what’s really important has become foggy. You need a break from the routine of your life. Sometimes you just need to stop and remind yourself what’s really important. Two powerful ways to regain your focus are prayer and fasting. They can revitalize you and lead you to fix your attention on the things that matter. In Acts 13, we see this principle at work in the church in Antioch. They prayed. They fasted. And God did something incredible.

Concept: Prayer and Fasting

Preschool

Matthew 28:19-20; Acts 2

LIFE POINT: Jesus said to His disciples, “Tell people everywhere about Me. ” On the day of a special Jewish celebration, people from far away came to in Jerusalem to celebrate. People spoke many languages. Peter stood up to preach. God made all of the people to hear and understand what Peter said in their own languages. Peter told the people many stories about Jesus and His miracles. He told them that Jesus had died but was alive. He said that Jesus was the one to believe in or trust. Many people
believed in Jesus that day, and the first church began. Members of the first church listened to Jesus’ disciples teach about Jesus. They ate together, prayed for one another, and shared their belongings with one another. They met together often to worship and praise Jesus. They told others about Jesus. The new church continued to grow.

LIVE IT OUT: Take your child along on a ministry opportunity with your church. Help distribute flyers about a special event or do yard work for a homebound member.

Kids

Matthew 28:19-21; Acts 2

LIFE POINT: Jesus said to His followers: “Go all over the world. Tell about Me. Baptize believers. Teach them to follow Me.” On the day of a special Jewish celebration, people from far away came to in Jerusalem to celebrate. People spoke many languages. Peter stood up to preach. God made all of the people to hear and understand what Peter said in their own languages. Peter told many stories about Jesus and His miracles. He said
that Jesus had died but was alive. He said that Jesus was the Messiah. Three thousand people believed. The first church began. Members of the first church listened to Jesus’ disciples teach about Jesus. They ate together, prayed for one another, and shared their belongings with one another. They met together often to worship and praise Jesus. They told others about Jesus. The new church continued to grow.

LIVE IT OUT: The purpose of the church is to worship God and help others. Get your child involved in a church ministry. Help her live out God’s purpose for the church.

Students

Acts 13:1-3,44-52

THE POINT: An energized church tells the world about Jesus. When was the last time you felt like you needed a break? What do you do when you get tired and start losing your focus? Discuss the following quote:

“Our rest lies in looking to the Lord, not to ourselves.”1 — Watchman Nee

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 or she plans to complete Just Pray:
• Talk with your student about the importance of prayer. Help him or her see that prayer is the act of turning to God and trusting Him for help.

If he or she plans to complete Do Something:
• Read 1 Timothy 4:12 together and talk about what this passage means in the life of your student.
• Pray together, asking God to show your student how he or she can share the love and hope Jesus has for the world.

1. Watchman Nee, The Spiritual Man, Volume 1 (North Chesterfield, VA: Christian Fellowship Publishers, 1968), 20.


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Conversation Starters: Unity

Posted on November 11, 2015 by Karah

_MG_0406THE BIBLE MEETS LIFE: We unite with others over the strangest things. Consider your favorite sports team. As you sit in the stands, the people surrounding you are strangers. However, rallied around your favorite team they become family. Your one common interest unites you. The church takes unity to a different level. The church is very diverse, but we come together because of our shared faith in Jesus Christ. It’s a unity grounded in who we are. In the Book of Acts, we see a group of believers who changed the world because they lived in unity.

Concept: Unity

Preschool

Luke 10:38-42

LIFE POINT: Jesus and His helpers (disciples) were traveling. They came to the town where two sisters, Mary and Martha, lived. Martha invited Jesus to come inside the house. Mary sat on the floor near Jesus. She listened carefully as Jesus talked. She
wanted to hear everything Jesus said. Martha did not sit down. She was busy in the house, preparing food for Jesus to eat. Soon, Martha noticed that she was doing all
the work. She said to Jesus, “Tell my sister to help me.” In a kind voice, Jesus said, “Martha, do not worry about what needs to be done. Mary is listening to Me. She has made the right choice.”

LIVE IT OUT: Make a list of people who are important to your family and your child. Pray with your child for each person on the list. Be sure your child knows that Jesus loves each of them.

Kids

John 20:19-29

LIFE POINT: After Jesus died, the disciples were afraid. They met together in a locked room. Suddenly, Jesus stood with them! Jesus greeted His disciples. He showed them his hands and side. He spoke to them with encouraging words. Thomas was not with the disciples when they saw Jesus. He did not believe what they told him. “I must see for myself!” Thomas exclaimed. Eight days later, Thomas was with the disciples in a locked room. Suddenly Jesus was with them. Jesus showed Thomas His hands and His side. Now Thomas knew that Jesus was alive.

LIVE IT OUT: Jesus is alive! Discuss with your child how he knows Jesus is alive. Pray together, thanking God for Jesus’ sacrifice for us.

Students

Acts 4:31-37

THE POINT: Our return to God pulls us together. Who do you feel connected to? What makes you feel connected to those people or groups? Discuss the following quote:

“God’s family, which comes into being by regeneration, is more central and more lasting than the human family that comes into being by procreation.”1 — John Piper

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 or she plans to complete Your Church:
• Pray with your student for your church family. Pray 1 Peter 3:8 specifically. Ask God to show you your part in bringing or maintaining unity.

If he or she plans to complete Unity Through Forgiveness:
• Make yourself available to your student to talk as he or she learns to forgive people who have hurt him or her.
• Model forgiveness in your home this week by extending grace to your spouse, children, and friends.

1. John Piper, This Momentary Marriage: A Parable of Permanence (Wheaton: Crossway, 2009), 117.


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Conversation Starters: God’s Word

Posted on November 4, 2015 by Karah

IMG_0279THE BIBLE MEETS LIFE: Have you ever been backpacking? When you backpack, you
only bring the essentials you’ll need to survive for the amount of days you’re hiking. One essential is a map—a real, paper map. You’ll make wrong turns and get turned around. But a map takes you where you want to go regardless of how lost you get. God has given us a map that never fails. This map—God’s Word—gives us His directions on how to live. It puts us on the right path. The Israelites knew this during the days of Nehemiah, and it is a truth we should cling to.

Concept: God’s Word

Preschool

Luke 4:16-22

LIFE POINT: Jesus went to Nazareth. Nazareth was the town where Jesus’ family lived when He was a boy. While Jesus was there, He went to the synagogue (church). Jesus stood up to read. A church helper handed Jesus the scroll of Scriptures. Jesus carefully unrolled the scroll and read. Jesus read, “God sent Me to teach people about Him and to help people.” Jesus rolled up the scroll, gave it to the church helper, and sat down. All the people watched Jesus. Jesus looked at the people and said, “These words are about Me.” The people were surprised at what Jesus said.

LIVE IT OUT: Make sure your child has a Bible he can use. The Bible is a book for everyone. He will begin to develop love and respect for the Bible as his own. Read to him from the Bible and help him to learn familiar stories.

Kids

John 14:15-26

LIFE POINT: Jesus and His disciples were eating the Passover meal together. Jesus spoke to His followers. He explained that the way they could show love to Him was by obeying His commands. Jesus promised to send the Holy Spirit to help them. The Holy Spirit would be with them forever. Jesus told the followers over and over that keeping God’s commands was the way to show their love. The Holy Spirit would come to Jesus’ followers. Anyone who loved Jesus and believed in Him would receive the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit would teach them. He would remind them of everything Jesus said.

LIVE IT OUT: Ask your child to find something in the Bible that has been difficult for her to understand. Comment that God sends His Holy Spirit to Christians to help them. If your child is not a Christian yet, begin to talk to her about how to become a Christian.

Students

Nehemiah 8:1-8

THE POINT: God’s Word is the map for a consistent life. What sources do you consult most often when you need direction? In what ways might you need to recalibrate? Discuss the following quote:

“The Holy Scriptures are our letters from home.”1 —Augustine of Hippo

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 or she plans to complete Hide and Seek:
• Talk with your student about the reasons it’s important to hide God’s Word in our hearts.
• Sit down and identify one or two Scripture passages that you will work together to memorize this week.

If he or she plans to complete Have a Plan:
• Join your student in identifying a Bible reading plan. You may choose different plans, but you can hold each other accountable by talking about what you are learning.

1. “ Augustine of Hippo Quotes,” Goodreads [cited 18 November 2015]. Available from the Internet: http://www.goodreads.com.


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