Conversation Starters: Life in the Community
Posted by Karah
THE BIBLE MEETS LIFE: Serving people who can benefit us is not difficult. “Scratch my back, and I’ll scratch yours” is a reality in the business world and even in many relationships. Serving, then, becomes about me, and not about the other person. That mindset is absent in Scripture and is to be absent in the church; in fact, believers are called to serve even those who have no means to repay a kindness.
Concept: Life in the Community
LIFE POINT: More and more people were becoming part of the church in Jerusalem. The people in the church knew they should help one another. Some of the people did not have enough food to eat. Many of those people were widows, ladies whose husbands had died. The disciples were busy teaching about Jesus. They decided to choose seven men to be special helpers to help the widows and other people who needed help. They chose Stephen, Philip, and five other men. These men were wise and loved God. The disciples prayed for the seven men. The special helpers helped the widows and other people who needed food. The disciples were able to tell more and more people about Jesus. Many people became part of the church.
LIVE IT OUT: Talk with your child about the people who help and serve at your church or in your community. Explain to your child how each of these people’s jobs helps others learn more about God and Jesus.
LIFE POINT: More and more people were becoming part of the church every day. Some people noticed that there was a problem. There were widows who were being left out and not getting enough food. The disciples gathered together the other people from the church to talk about this problem. The disciples said that they were busy teaching others about Jesus. They needed some other people to help take care of those in need. The disciples told the people to choose seven men who were wise and full of the Holy Spirit to be helpers. The whole group was pleased with this decision. They chose Stephen, Philip, Prochorus, Nicanor, Timon, Parmenas, and Nicolaus to be the helpers. The men met with the disciples and they prayed together. The Word of God continued to spread. The number of people who learned about Jesus in Jerusalem grew quickly.
LIVE IT OUT: Discuss the different jobs that pastors, missionaries, or camp staff have. Expand your discussion beyond just those that your child knows. Help your child learn how each person’s job furthers the kingdom of God and helps people know about Jesus.
THE POINT: Living for Christ means serving the needs of others.
• What do you like best about your community?
• How could looking to the end affect the way we see people?
• What keeps us from reaching out to those who need our help?
• With so many needs, how do we decide whom to help?
Discuss the following quote:
“Those who belong to Christ are sheep in this respect, that they love to get together. Sheep go in flocks, and so do God’s people.”¹— Charles Spurgeon
LIVE IT OUT: Encourage your student to take practical steps to take his or her faith and Live It Out. Here are some ways you can encourage your students to live out their faith with Christ personally, in community, and in their culture:
• CHRIST: Pray for the opportunities to serve alongside your student this week.
• COMMUNITY: Determine areas in your community that you and your student can minister and serve needy people together.
• CULTURE: Make a commitment with your student to serve the needy and seek those many would deem the least of these.
¹“Sheep Go In Flocks, and So Do God’s People, ”First Love Publications, 11 February 2016, [accessed 13 September 2013]. Available from the Internet: http://www.firstlovepublications.org/quotes/sheep-go-inflocks-and-so-do-gods-people.