Kids Ministry as Forest Lake

Month: August 2018

Paul’s Joy in Prison

Big Idea: Even while he was in prison, Paul told the Philippian church to be joyful in Jesus.

Bible Passage: Philippians 1:12-30

Paul was living as a prisoner in Rome. He was waiting to meet with the emperor of Rome. While in prison, Paul wrote a letter to the Christians in Philippi to thank them for sending a gift and to tell them about his work.

Paul wrote, “I want you to know, brothers, that even though the Jews tried to stop me, everything that has happened has actually helped me tell more people the good news about Jesus.“I hope that I will never be afraid or embarrassed about anything. I want to be bold and honor Jesus, whether I live or I die.

“For me, living is Christ and dying is gain. If I live, I live for Jesus. If I die for Jesus, I will be with Him forever…No matter what happens, live your life in a way that brings honor to the gospel of Christ. ”

Paul also urged the believers to not let anyone scare them away from doing God’s work. He said, “This is the work God has given you to do—not only to believe in Him, but also to suffer for Him.” 

When we find ourselves in trouble, or circumstances beyond our control, we can know that Jesus is unchanging, and He promises to give us himself and our joy is found in Him. His love for us never changes, no matter our circumstances.

Family Activity

As a family, have children help you write a list of all the good times you've had together. Include some of their favourite memories, and yours, too. Then, write down some times that were hard together. Write a list of things that you know change over time. Eg. Babies grow, children change as they grow, plants grow flowers in the spring, the weather changes, our clothes change, our houses may change. Talk about these times, and remind children that during these hard times, and the good times too, and in all things, Jesus never changes, and His love for us remains the same. Even though the world around us changes – like the seasons, or day to night, and we grow and change, our God remains the same, and His promise to give His unchanging self to us in all circumstances brings us joy no matter what.

Pray together and say "Thank you God for being the same yesterday, today and forever. Thank you for loving us no matter what is going on. Please remind us of your great love in all things, no matter what is happening around us or to us. Help us find our joy in you, Jesus, not in this world and what happens to us. Amen."

Paul Before Rulers

Big Idea: Paul was able to share the story of how Jesus changed his life because He knew Jesus as a friend and Saviour.

Bible Passage: 24:22-27, 25:1-14, 26:24-32

This week the kids learned more about Paul. Paul was still under arrest for preaching the gospel of Jesus. He had the chance to speak to leaders- govenors, kings and queens, and every time, Paul stood and shared the story of how Jesus saved him.

We talked about how Paul was able to be courageous to share the gospel of Jesus despite the danger because He didn't just know about Jesus, but knew Him personally and shared the story of how Jesus changed his own life. He loved Jesus as his Saviour and friend. 

Family Activity

We talked about the difference between knowing lots about Jesus, and knowing Jesus personally ourselves. We made a book at Kidzone this week to talk about some of the ways we can get to know Jesus as a friend so that we can share about Him and what He has done for each of us, personally. 

Here are some helpful ways to help your kids know Jesus that we put in our books:

  • Imagine Him. Ask kids, what do you think Jesus looks, smells and sounds like? What would his heartbeat sound like if you laid your head on His chest?
  • Talk to Him. Choose an unfamiliar place in your home and talk to Jesus there together. You can talk to Jesus anywhere, about anything.
  • Read about Him. Read together and encourage children to read parts of the Bible alone and write questions down they may have.
  • Tell Him you love him! Sing songs of praise together in the car and say, "I love you Jesus!" Whisper it together too and remind children we don't need to speak loud for God to hear us, He hears even our whispered prayers
  • Look for Him. Ask children, "where can you see Jesus today?" and let them describe where they might see Jesus at work in their world. It could be in nature – the sky, the wind, or the sound of the birds, or during conversations with others.

Remind children that Jesus wants us to know Him too, and when we ask He loves to show us more of Himself. Read Matthew 7:7 together.

The Shipwreck

Big Idea: In the storms of life, we can choose to hold on to God's promises, because He is faithful and never lets go of us.

Bible Passage: Acts 27:13-44, 28:11-16

This week the kids learned that Paul was on board a prison ship as a prisoner  headed for Rome. While he was on board, there was a great hurricane, and the sailors and prisoners were afraid they would die. An angel of the Lord appeared to Paul one night and promised he would go to Rome, and they would be saved from the hurricane. Paul told this to the crew, and they listened. They were shipwrecked on the island of Malta, but all 276 men survived. Then, after winter, they sailed on another ship to Rome, where Paul was allowed to wait out his trial in a house with a guard, rather than in prison. Many people heard Paul's testimony of Jesus, and came to know Jesus because of Paul's faith. 

We can, like Paul, trust Jesus. Jesus promises to never leave us and never forsake us. Look up Matthew 28:19-20 together as a family and read it aloud. During the storms of our life, we have a choice. We can HOLD ON to the promises of God, and trust Him to care for us, or let go and try and survive on our own. We, like Paul, can trust God because He is faithful and never ever breaks his promises. He is with us in the storm, and He will hold us fast.

Family Activity 

Stand in a circle together and hold hands. Pretend together that you are in a storm and move around, making noises of thunder and rain. Move around like you are being blown by the rough winds. Make the "storm" as rough as possible, so that it is difficult to hold on to one another's hands. Challenge the kids to hold on no matter how rough the "storm" gets.

Sit down together in your circle and talk about how sometimes, when life gets rough and we face the 'storms' or tough times, that it makes it hard to hold on to God's promises. But we can HOLD ON and not let go because God is faithful and promises to be with us, no matter what. We are promised that when we are slipping, and find it hard to trust God, that He will never ever let go of us. He is much stronger than us, or any storm we face. Ask the children if they are facing any "storms" or tough times right now, and share your own struggles with them if appropriate. Then, in your circle, hold hands and pray, taking these things to Jesus, and asking for His help to HOLD ON, and thanking Him for never letting go of us.

Here's a great song to listen to together, called He Will Hold Me Fast.



The Plan to Stop Paul

Big Idea: The gospel is always worth sharing, and we can be strong and courageous because God is faithful and promises to be with us.

Bible Passage: Acts 23

This week the kids learned more about the apostle Paul. We talked about how he shared the gospel with many people, and this angered many of the Jews. In this story, we see that even in the midst of danger, God himself comes and stands by Paul and tells him, "Have courage! You told about me in Jerusalem, I want you toell about Me in Rome, too." Paul escaped the danger and was able to continue on his journey.

We talked about how sometimes we are uncertain about our future, or what will happen to us if we share the good news of Jesus, but this story of Paul teaches us that we can always trust Jesus to care for us, even when we are facing uncertain or dangerous circumstances. It is always worth it to share the hope of Jesus and the good news of the gospel.

Family Activity

Ask why do you think some people oppose the gospel?  Do you ever feel afraid to share about Jesus? Who can help us have courage to share the gospel?

Draw a map of your house, and talk about places we feel close to God. Maybe it's in our beds or around the dinner table. Maybe we feel safe and close to God at breakfast time when we pray together. Remind children that God has promised to be with us, close to us, all the time, everywhere we go. Remind children that no matter where they are, they can ask Jesus to help them be strong to share the gospel, or give them courage, and He will answer.

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