Conversation Starters: Building Friendship

Posted on May 16, 2018 by Karah

CONNECTION POINT: Love for others grows through the love of Jesus.

THE BIBLE MEETS LIFE: We are familiar with business contracts and marriage covenants, but we rarely think of our friendships in terms of a covenant. It’s not likely a formal agreement, but we often recognize a bond between friends that goes beyond just a shared interest or affinity. In the Book of 1 Samuel, David and Jonathan gave us an example of what such a covenant looks like.

Concept: Building Friendship


Acts 9:19-31

LIFE POINT: Before Saul believed in Jesus, he wanted to hurt people who loved and obeyed Jesus. But Saul changed and believed that Jesus was God’s Son. Saul wanted others to believe in Jesus, too. Saul was with Jesus’ disciples in Damascus. He was telling people that Jesus was God’s Son. The people who heard Saul knew he had hurt people who believed in Jesus. They were afraid
of Saul, but Saul kept telling people about Jesus. Saul heard that some people were going to try to hurt him. The disciples helped Saul escape. At night, they put Saul in a large basket and lowered him through an opening in the city wall. Saul went to Jerusalem. Some people were still afraid of him. Barnabas became his friend. Barnabas told the people that Saul had changed and now he loved Jesus. Saul continued to tell people about Jesus. Many people decided to follow Jesus.

LIVE IT OUT: Briefly review the Bible story about Saul telling others about Jesus. Comment that Jesus helped Saul be able to tell others. Give your child paper and crayons. Ask her to draw a way that Jesus helps her.


Acts 9:19-31

LIFE POINT: In Damascus, Saul began preaching about Jesus. He told the people that Jesus was God’s Son. The Jewish leaders wanted to stop Saul. They wanted to kill him. The disciples rescued Saul. They hid Saul in a basket and lowered him through a large hole in a wall so that he escaped. Saul went to Jerusalem. He wanted to work with the disciples there, but they were afraid of him.
A disciple by the name of Barnabas took Saul to the apostles, and Saul described how he had talked to Jesus on the road to Damascus. Barnabas told the apostles how Saul began teaching in Damascus and how the Jewish leaders tried to kill him. The apostles helped Saul travel to many places to tell people about Jesus. He continued to teach people about what Jesus had done for him.

LIVE IT OUT: How have you seen Jesus helping your family? Talk to your child about what Jesus has done for her. Encourage her to add to her testimony by telling how being a Christian has changed her life. This is a critical part of sharing a testimony with another person.


1 Samuel 18:1-4; 19:4-7; 20:10-13

THE POINT: Strong friendships grow because of shared commitment.
• What do you enjoy most about your friendships?
• What are some practical ways to demonstrate selflessness in our friendships?
• What risks do we take when we stand up for our friends?
• How do you typically respond when a friendship becomes complicated?
Discuss the following quote:

“They are rich who have true friends.”¹ —Thomas Fuller

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: Spend time with your student discussing his or her relationship with Jesus. Take time to pray for the relationship to grow between your student and Jesus.
• COMMUNITY: Discuss with your student ways that he or she can promote unity and love in the church and student ministry.
• CULTURE: Help your student identify lost friends that need to hear the gospel and make a plan that can be put into action.

¹. Thomas Fuller, Gnomologia: Adages and Proverbs; Wise Sentences and Witty Sayings, Ancient and Modern, Foreign and British (London: B. Barker, 1732), 215.

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Conversation Starters: Love Gives

Posted on May 9, 2018 by Karah

CONNECTION POINT: Telling people about Jesus shows love for them.

THE BIBLE MEETS LIFE: Relationships can be fragile. Everything’s fine if two people are traveling down the same road, but what happens if those two people don’t see eye to eye—or open animosity is evident? The Christian’s role in a relationship—any relationship—is to love. When we live and dwell in the love of Christ, that same love seeps into all our relationships.

Concept: Love Gives


Acts 8:26-40

LIFE POINT: Philip traveled from town to town, telling people about Jesus. One day an angel (a messenger from God) spoke to Philip. The angel told him to go to the desert road that went from Jerusalem to Gaza. Philip started walking down the road. He saw a man riding in a chariot. The Ethiopian man had been to Jerusalem to worship God. Philip heard the man reading from a Bible scroll. Philip asked the man, “Do you understand what you are reading?” “No,” the man said. “I need someone to explain the words to me.” So Philip sat beside him in the chariot and explained the
words. Philip told the man that the words in the Bible scroll were about Jesus. He told him the good news about Jesus. The man saw some water and asked to be baptized. Philip baptized him. The Ethiopian man went home very happy. Philip traveled to other places to tell people about Jesus.

LIVE IT OUT: Help your child think of a family member or friend who needs to know about Jesus. Print “Jesus loves you” at the top of a piece of paper. Let your child draw a special picture for this person. Plan to give the picture to the person. Say a prayer together for this person beforehand.


Acts 8:26-40

LIFE POINT: Philip was one of the disciples. He told people about Jesus. An angel told Philip to go to the desert road from Jerusalem to Gaza. While Philip was walking down the road, he saw a man from Ethiopia sitting in a chariot while reading a Scripture passage. Philip asked the man if he understood what he was reading. The Ethiopian said that he was not able to understand what he was reading because he had no one to help him understand it. The Ethiopian asked Philip to sit beside him in the chariot. Philip read explained that the Scripture was talking about Jesus. Philip explained to him all that Jesus had done. The Ethiopian believed everything that Philip told him about Jesus. The Ethiopian saw some water and asked Philip if he could be baptized. Philip told the Ethiopian, “If you believe with all of your heart, you may.” Philip baptized the man from Ethiopia.

LIVE IT OUT: Has your child ever shared his testimony with a friend? Remind him that God wants us to tell others the good news about Jesus. Help him think of a friend who needs to know about Jesus. Brainstorm ideas for helping that friend learn about Jesus.


John 15:9-17

THE POINT: Center every relationship on the unconditional love of Christ.
• How has technology changed the way we relate to each other?
• How does obeying God’s commands demonstrate our love for Him?
• What does it look like to love others the way Jesus loves us?
• What keeps us from obeying Jesus’ commands in these verses?
Discuss the following quote:

“The world does not understand theology or dogma [doctrine], but it understands love.”¹ —Dwight L. Moody

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: Take time to pray with your student ensuring that he or she is loving Jesus in the same way that He loves us.
• COMMUNITY: Encourage your student to show love to his camp friends this week, even if they live far away. Brainstorm a couple ways you could show love and then follow through.
• CULTURE: It is easy to love our friends and family, but Jesus calls us to love everyone including our enemies. Seeing you acting in love and doing good will help your student to act out that same love with others.

¹. Inspired Faith: 365 Days a Year: Daily

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