Kids Ministry as Forest Lake

Month: April 2018

Paul Confronted Peter

Big Idea: Paul told Peter we are saved by faith in Jesus alone.

Bible Passage: Galatians 2:11-21

This week the kids learnt about Peter. Peter had been hanging out with the Gentiles, until some Jewish people came along and told him he shouldn't. Peter then stopped hanging out with the Gentiles, and Paul rebuked him.

He reminded Peter that the way everyone is saved is by faith in Jesus Christ, and that no works could save anyone- not the Jews, and not the Gentiles either. We are all saved by faith in Jesus Christ – His death and resurrection, and by repenting and following him. 

We talked about how that is true for us, too. We aren't ever good enough to make God love us, or bad enough to make Him stop loving us. We are loved: relentlessly, unconditionally, wonderfully and simply because God chooses to love us. We can't impress Him. So we don't obey Him to make Him happy. We don't obey Him to look good to others, like Peter tried. We obey Jesus because He died for us, and He loves us. We tell others about Him not just because He told us to, but because we want to love them how Jesus loves us. Relentlessly, unconditionally and wonderfully.

When we truly understand how loved we are, then we can begin to obey Jesus out of trust, instead of just trying to do the 'right thing' all the time. 

Family Activity

At the dinner table, talk about how great it is to feel truly loved. Each person can say one thing they love about the person on their left. Parents, speak things about your children that you love. Remind children that there is nothing they can ever do that will change your love for them, that you love them no matter what. That's how they can know that they can trust you – that your love is un-conditional – that it comes with no conditions. Tell children it is the same with the love of God. That there is nothing they can do that will make him love them more, or stop loving them, and that is why we can trust Him. He loves so much that He sent Jesus to die for us – so we can know that He is worth trusting. We can trust and obey Jesus because His love for us never, ever changes, and He always, always keeps His promises. Try repeating this every night or morning at the table, until the kids are sick of hearing it – to prove to them God's love never stops!

See you Sunday!

Paul’s Third Journey

Big Idea: God helped Paul preach with courage and He helps us too.

This week the kids learned that Paul continued to preach God's word. Paul’s journey began when he traveled to the city of Corinth. To make a living, Paul was a tentmaker. Paul became friends with two other tentmakers in Corinth: a man named Aquila and his wife, Priscilla as well as Apollos. Apollos was a leader in the early church, and Aquila and Priscilla helped him better understand about Jesus and the Scriptures. Apollos went on to greatly help other believers by showing through Scripture that Jesus is the Messiah. Then the Holy Spirit led Paul to Jerusalem. Paul knew he would face danger in there. His friends prayed for him and God helped Paul preach with courage, even when he was in danger. 

We can be like friends of Paul, and encourage others to have courage and share about Jesus. We can pray for one another. We can also be like Paul and have the courage to share God's good news even if we afraid, knowing that Jesus promises to be with 'even to the ends of the earth'. 

Family Activity

This week, draw a map of the places your family will go. Mark where your friends who encourage you are (like Priscilla and Aquila) such as church friends. Mark where you are afraid to go, or share about Jesus on the map. Mark also where you know people are that don't know Jesus as Lord yet. (Your map can be as messy as you like!) Put your map on the fridge, or the middle of the table, and pray over each member in your family, asking God to help you as you go to these places this week. Leave the map out for your family members to see, to help remind you that wherever you go, the Holy Spirit will go with you. 

See you Sunday!

How to Help Kids Remember What Matters

Happy back-to-school week! 

As your family dives back into routine, here's some encouragement about repitition and why it matters. 

How to Help Kids Remember What Matters

by  | Jan 29, 2018 | Ministry LeadersOrange Leaders | 0 comments

There’s a retired lab technician named EP, who in the book Moonwalking with Einstein, is referred to as “the most forgetful man in the world.” EP suffered from one of the most severe cases of amnesia ever documented; his memory extended back only as far as his most recent thought. Questions like, “What did you have for dinner” or “Who is the President?” were lost on him. In fact, his amnesia was so bad that when asked about the reflection he saw in the tinted windows of a car he passed by, he responds, “An old man . . . that is all.”

There’s something interesting about this story, however. EP regularly went on walks around his neighborhood, and despite not being able to remember his own house or the streets in his neighborhood, he’d take the exact same route every time. He couldn’t write down his own address, recognize his neighbors, or even tell you what he was doing—but he repeated the same route and unknowingly found himself returning home every time.

Sometimes there are things that we work hard to learn. We take notes, study, memorize, highlight, and do whatever we can to cram as much information into our heads. We study for the test only to later find out what we managed to remember (or forget).

Other times we remember things that we didn’t even know we ever learned. When’s the last time your teenager had to recall the mechanics of bike riding before hoping on a bike? When’s the last time your toddler had to search the depths of his memory to know what folder you keep his apps in? Or the last time your third-grader had to concentrate at what makes a circle a circle?

Repeat the things that matter the most. 

As leaders and parents, the most valuable set of memories we can create for children are the unconscious memories of a God who loves them. They are the memories they know, but that they don’t realize they are learning. These are the memories that don’t fade even when memories start to fade.

Whether it be in the repletion of a core truth like, “Jesus wants to be my friend forever,” the weekly reminder of a small group leader, “I’m here for you,” or the lyrics on repeat from camp, “Your love never fails, never gives up.”

Repetition creates memories that last.

This isn’t a new idea in the church. There’s a reason that many people who’ve forgotten most other things still remember the hymns they learned growing up. The things we repeat the most, we will remember the longest.

Help others repeat the same things that matter the most. 

When my son started Kindergarten, my wife and I were more nervous than he was. The moment I was about to say goodbye, I had a moment when I remembered the Parent Cue video we watched the night before. So, in the midst of the chaos of parents hanging up backpacks and saying their goodbyes, I whispered in his ear before leaving him alone (so I thought), “Who is always with you?”

And with a big smile he repeated back to me, “God is always with me.”

Without even thinking, because of some bedtime conversations, great teachers at church, and being cued into a simple phrase to remember, we were both reminded of what mattered the most. He wouldn’t be alone in school, He’d never be alone.

And the moment that happens, repetition can move from monthly to weekly to daily. And God’s love can be the thing that your kids know without even knowing they’ve memorized it. It can become the song that gets stuck in their head on a busy day, the prayer they repeat when falling asleep, or even the lullaby that they share with their own kids someday.

Repeat the things that matter the most because it is what you want people to remember the most.

Freedom in Jesus

Big Idea: Are we free to live as we please?

Bible Passage: 1 Corinthians 6:12 +19

(If developmentally/age appropriate, read verses 13-18 as well.)

On Sunday we talked about freedom in Jesus. We have the freedom to live as 'new', freed people – not striving for our salvation, but acknowledging that Jesus has done it all for us, and there is nothing we can do to earn God's grace & love – it is given undeservingly. So how then should we live as free people?

We talked about how we don't just use our freedom to do whatever we want. As Paul says, "I have the right to do anything, but not everything is beneficial." We live in light of the grace given to us by God. We choose to live God's ways because we love him, not because we are trying to make Him love us. He loves us unconditionally already! 

So, we live as Jesus instructs us in John 13:34. "A new command I give you. Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another." We choose to live with Jesus as Lord, and serve others before ourselves because we first see this is how Jesus loves and lived. We use our freedom to serve and love others first, not because we have to, but because we love a God who first did this for us!

Family Activity

During school holidays choose a day, or an evening together. Write down fun things your kids always want to do, but aren't allowed to. (Ice cream and pancakes for dinner, wearing pyjamas all day – even if you're going out, wear socks with no shoes around the house, let the dog inside, eat with your hands and no cutlery, spray paint their hair blue, watch TV all day, eat lollies for breakfast, stay up past their bed time etc.) Choose one (or more if you're game!) and allow kids to do this with you.

Let kids talk about how great their freedom to do whatever they like is. Then talk about your family rules, and why it's so important that you have them. Talk about how you give them rules because you love them and know what's best for them. Talk about how it's like that in God's family too. God doesn't just let us have or do whatever we want, He knows what's best for us, and so gives us ways to live and follow Him because He loves us. Thank God together that He cares enough for us to tell us how to use our freedom and love one another, and that He gave us the perfect example to follow in Jesus.

Have a happy holiday week!




Hey families,

This weekend we talked about Jesus' crucifixion & resurrection over the Easter weekend. Here's some more thoughts for you to talk & read about in your homes over the holidays.

God’s law for the people was plain. Together, read Deuteronomy 6:5. But God’s people, and all people, have broken the law. We have loved other things more than we love God. That is sin.

Jesus’ purpose for coming to earth was to save us from our sin. (Matt. 1:21) Why did Jesus have to die? Why couldn’t He just say, “You are forgiven”? God is just and requires due payment for sin. To simply forgive sin without requiring a payment would be unjust. According to God’s Word, the payment of sin is death. (Rom. 6:23) But not only is God just, He is also loving. That is why Jesus was willing to die in our place.

Jesus came to live and die to show God’s love to us (Rom. 5:7-8) so that whoever believes in Him might not perish but have eternal life. (John 3:16) Jesus came to die so that we would be forgiven. (Eph. 1:7) Jesus came to die to bring us to God. (1 Pet. 3:18)

Jesus died on the cross to satisfy the wrath of God toward sin. Jesus’ resurrection proved that God was satisfied with Jesus’ sacrifice, and forgiveness and life are found in Him. (See 1 Cor. 15:17.) If Jesus had died but not been raised up, He would have been like military leaders who died without a throne. (Acts 5:33-37) But Jesus conquered death, just as He said He would. (John 2:19-21)

Jesus’ resurrection gives us hope for our resurrection. (Rom. 6:5) Romans 8:11 says that the same Spirit that raised Jesus from the dead will raise our bodies to life.

Jesus’ crucifixion and resurrection are not the end of the story, but the center of it. Everything that was written about Jesus in the Old Testament and spoken by the prophets was coming true. As you teach your kids this Bible story, emphasize the gospel: the good news of who Jesus is and what He has done

The crucifixion and resurrection of Jesus is the center of the gospel. We deserve to die because of our sin, but Jesus died in our place. He was the blood sacrifice made once and for all for the forgiveness of sin. God was pleased with Jesus’ sacrifice and raised Jesus from the dead to reign as King over all creation. We are forgiven only through Jesus. (Acts 4:12)

Family Activity

This week, during the holidays, choose a favourite story book to read or movie to watch together. Consider hosting a 'movie night' together as a fun holiday activity.  Pop some popcorn together, spread the bean-bags & blankets out on the floor and get cosy!

Choose one that has a good plot line – maybe an adventure book where a character has a moment of uncertainty. (Toy Story, Inside Out, the Lego Movie etc). As you read or watch, pause or stop the book/movie right at the climax of uncertainty or just when things start to look really bad for the lead character. While you're stopped, talk about how bad it would be if the story ended there. Talk about how bad it would be, likewise, for us, if Jesus had died and not risen again. But that was not the end of God's Story. Finish the book or movie, and reflect on the victorious ending. Talk together of how wonderful it is that Jesus did come back to life and is able to rescue us from death, too. How death, for the Christian, is not the end of the story, but that we are saved for eternal life, even after death – life with Jesus forever.

Have a great week!


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