MONTHLY ARCHIVES: May 2019
CONNECTION POINT: People should follow the commands of Jesus because God is righteous.
THE BIBLE MEETS LIFE: Life is just not fair. People with poor character, questionable ethics, and skewed morals seem to get ahead in life, while those who seek to do right seem to be passed by. In fact, people are often treated badly because of their right actions and character. We might be tempted to think God is also unfair since He allows this to happen. But God is a righteous God. He is the Lord our Righteousness, and He will ultimately bring justice to bear on all things.
Conversation Starters: Our Righteousness
LIFE POINT: Peter, John, and some of their friends fished all night. They did not catch any fish. When the sun rose, they saw a man standing on the shore. He said, “Did you catch any fish?” They told him no. He told them to put their net down on the right side of the boat. The fishermen threw the net into the water on the right side. When they tried to lift the net, it was full of fish! There were 153 fish in the net. John said, “That man is Jesus!” Peter jumped into the water and swam to shore. The other men brought the boat to shore. When the men reached land, Jesus said, “Come and have breakfast with Me.” He gave the men bread and fish. The men were happy to see Jesus. Jesus told them to love and care for other people.
LIVE IT OUT: Teach your child to show love to others. Say the verse: “Jesus said, ‘Love other people.’ ” Think of a neighbor and plan a kindness for that person. You could gift some food or give a card drawn by your child. Be sure to share with the person that Jesus loves him.
LIFE POINT: Peter and other disciples fished all night. They didn’t catch a thing! As the sun began to come up, the men could see someone standing on the shore. The man called out, “Did you catch any fish?” “No,” the men answered. “Throw your net on the other side,” called the man. The fishermen threw the net and caught so many fish they couldn’t lift the net into the boat! Peter jumped into the water and came to shore. The other men brought the boat, pulling the net behind them. Jesus gave the men bread and fish to eat. Jesus spoke with Peter. He asked three times if Peter loved Him. Three times Peter said, “Yes.” Jesus told Peter to serve others as a way to follow Him.
LIVE IT OUT: Guide your child to read this week’s Bible verse, 2 John 1:6. Talk about what commands of Jesus we should follow. Help your child understand that showing the love of Jesus to the world is one of His commands. Discuss ways your child can do that task.
Jeremiah 33:3-8, 14-16
THE POINT: Because God is righteous, He will ultimately make all things right.
• When can you remember saying, “That’s not fair!”?
• When have you seen a negative turn into a positive over time?
• How have you experienced God’s restoration?
• How do the promises in these verses point forward to Jesus? Discuss the following quote:
“No one will ever go to Hell who has put his trust in Jesus Christ, but many will end up in torment who have trusted their own righteousness and reformation.(1) —Curtis Hutson
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: Ensure that your student is cultivating a close relationship with God by continually confessing, repenting, and pursuing Christ.
• COMMUNITY: Ask your student who God has used to help him or her grow in their faith and pursuit of Christ. Pray for those who are committed to helping your student grow.
• CULTURE: We present a picture of the gospel to a worldly culture. Talk with your student about being prepared for the criticism that may come from a culture with worldly values.
(1)“15 Curtis Hutson Quotes,” Christian Quotes [online], [accessed 27 August 2017]. Available from the Internet: https://www.christianquotes.info/quotes-by-author/curtis-hutson-quotes/#axzz4r4oBjR4N..
CONNECTION POINT: Because Jesus saved us, we can walk with God.
THE BIBLE MEETS LIFE: The Bible often depicts us as sheep. Left to ourselves, we wander off and place ourselves in harm’s way. We can’t find our way back. The Bible also depicts God as the Shepherd over us. He is the One who gently guides us, protects us, and comforts us. Psalm 23 is one of the most beloved psalms in Scripture, and it succinctly captures this picture of God as our loving Shepherd.
Concept: Our Shepherd
Matthew 19:13-15; Psalm 23
LIFE POINT: One day Jesus was teaching the people. Parents brought their children to see Jesus. They wanted Jesus to put His hands on the children and pray for them. Jesus’ disciples told the people to go away. They didn’t want the parents and children to bother Jesus. Jesus told His helpers, “Let the children come to Me.” Jesus touched the children; He held them and prayed for them. He told the people that everyone should love God just like the children love God. The disciples and other people saw that Jesus loves all people, including children.
LIVE IT OUT: Print the verse words of Psalm 23:1 on individual cards with matching symbols one each edge. Help your child put the verse in order, either using the words or matching the symbols. Say the verse together. Thank God that Jesus, our Shepherd, loves children.
John 20:19-31; Psalm 23
LIFE POINT: The disciples were afraid that the men who killed Jesus would find them. They locked the door where they met. Jesus appeared with the disciples! The disciples knew the man was Jesus. They were so happy! Thomas was not there when Jesus appeared, but the other disciples told him all about it. Thomas said, “I must see the scars from the nails.” Later, Thomas was with the other disciples in a room. Jesus appeared beside them again! Jesus spoke to Thomas. “Look at My hands. Touch My side. Don’t be someone who does not believe. Be someone who believes.” Thomas said, “My Lord and my God!” Jesus said that Thomas believed because He could see. He said that people who believe without seeing are blessed.
LIVE IT OUT: Review the Bible story with your child. Emphasize that Thomas acknowledged Jesus as Savior when Jesus appeared before him. Read together Romans 10:9. If your child is not a Christian, share the plan of salvation with him or her.
THE POINT: God guides us as He walks with us.
• When has a guide made an experience more memorable?
• Who or what do you look to for guidance on a regular basis?
• When has an awareness of God’s presence made you brave?
• How can our actions and attitudes demonstrate that we follow God as our shepherd? Discuss the following quote:
“A true shepherd leads the way. He does not merely point the way.”(1) —Leonard Ravenhill
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: Discuss with your student ways that he or she is allowing sin to block his or her walk with God. Pray with your student confessing all of your sins and commit to turning away from them in a real way.
• COMMUNITY: Talk honestly with your student about any friends he or she has that are not Christians. Pray for your student and his or her friends.
• CULTURE: Determine some ways to gently approach the gospel in conversations with friends and how to communicate the value of following Jesus.
(1)“Leonard Ravenhill Quote-Leadership,” Christian Quotes [online], [accessed 27 August 2017]. Available from the Internet: https://www.christianquotes.info/images/leonard-ravenhill-quoteleadrship/#axzz4r4oBjR4N.