November 8 // Waiting for God.

Read Acts 2:1-4 out loud with your family.

 

Ask the following question and discuss the answer together as a family.

 

Q: Why didn't the disciples just go out and start telling people about Jesus? 

 

Parent Note: Sometimes action without an understanding of how that action will impact the overall goal can be a bad idea. Prayer can open our minds, hearts, and ears to what the Lord is leading us to do. If He has asked us to do something, He will help us figure out how to accomplish it. 

 

FAMILY PRAYER:

Read the following prayer out loud. Have your kids repeat after you:

 

Dear God, thank You for the gift of Your Holy Spirit.
I know that You are always with me.
Please help me to live a life led by the Holy Spirit.
We ask these things in Jesus’ name, Amen.

October 20 // Trust Jesus.

Read John 11:37 out loud with your family.

 

Ask the following question and discuss the answer together as a family.

 

Q: Have you ever not gotten something you really wanted? 

 

Parent Note: Mary and Martha really wanted Jesus to heal their brother, but they didn't get that. Instead, they got to see the magnificent power of God bring their brother back to life. Sometimes we pray for things that we want, but we don't understand that what we want isn't the best possible thing for us. So when we pray for something and it doesn't happen, it doesn't mean that God isn't listening or that He doesn't care, it means God has better plans for us. 

 

FAMILY PRAYER:

Read the following prayer out loud. Have your kids repeat after you:

 

Dear God, thank You for having a plan.
I know that even if I don’t understand, Your ways are better than my own.
Help me to trust You when I am struggling to understand.
We ask this in Jesus’s name, Amen. 

October 19 // Jesus wept.

Read John 11:35 out loud with your family.

 

Ask the following question and discuss the answer together as a family.

 

Q: Have you ever seen a movie in which the characters laughed after something bad happened to them? 

 

Parent Note: Jesus weeping outside of Lazarus' tomb may seem equally confusing. Jesus was the only person there who knew that Lazarus' death was temporary, so shouldn't Jesus have been joyful? But the same can be said of us when we lose a loved one. If our loved ones believed in Jesus, they are in heaven, and we will see them again. Knowing that doesn't make our temporary loss any easier to bear. When Jesus lived as a man, He experienced everything life has to offer, both good and bad. When we read the stories about His life and see what He went through, we can see that no matter what happens to us, He can relate. Even though He knew that in a matter of moments He would raise Lazarus from the dead, He experienced grief with Lazarus' loved ones. 

 

FAMILY PRAYER:

Read the following prayer out loud. Have your kids repeat after you:

 

Dear God, thank You for understanding every emotion I feel.
I know that You are a God who cares about my feelings.
Please help me to be comforted when I feel sad, angry, or lonely.
We ask this in Jesus’s name, Amen. 

October 18 // God has a purpose.

Read John 11:17 out loud with your family.

 

Ask the following question and discuss the answer together as a family.

 

Q: Why didn't Jesus heal Lazarus and prevent him and his loved ones from suffering? 

 

Parent Note: Unfortunately, knowing and loving God does not make us immune to bad things in this world. Christians get sick. Christians face hardships. Christians die. However, just as we can count on experiencing suffering during our lives, we also can count on God's eternal love for us and a promise found in Romans 8:28: "And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose." Allowing Lazarus to die was very sad, but it provided Jesus with an opportunity to glorify God by showing His power and revealing that He was the Son of God. 

 

FAMILY PRAYER:

Read the following prayer out loud. Have your kids repeat after you:

 

Dear God, thank You that all things work together for good.
I know that even when bad things happen, You are still a good God.
Please help me to trust You when I face hard times.
We ask this in Jesus’s name, Amen. 

October 17 // Power over death.

Read John 11:11 out loud with your family.

 

Ask the following question and discuss the answer together as a family.

 

Q: Would you believe a friend's claim that she could run a mile in under a minute? 

 

Parent Note: To our human minds, something like this is impossible. We are limited by our imaginations and understanding of life and nature, but God can do much more than we can think or imagine. Jesus knew that He could bring Lazarus back to life. This display of power convinced even more people to believe that Jesus was the Messiah. 

 

FAMILY PRAYER:

Read the following prayer out loud. Have your kids repeat after you:

 

Dear God, thank You for displaying Your power so that we would believe.
I know that You can do all things, and I can do all things through You.
Please help me to have faith in You, even when things seem impossible.
We ask this in Jesus’s name, Amen. 

October 16 // Care for the sick.

Read John 11:3 out loud with your family.

 

Ask the following question and discuss the answer together as a family.

 

Q: Have you ever visited a sick friend or relative in the hospital? 

 

Parent Note: In such situations, we often feel helpless and awkward. Even though such visits may feel uncomfortable for us, we should remember that being very sick can be scary. Visiting our loved ones gives them encouragement. Knowing that someone cares and is praying for them can be as helpful as medicine. 

 

FAMILY PRAYER:

Read the following prayer out loud. Have your kids repeat after you:

 

Dear God, thank You for healing the sick.
I know that You are powerful and can heal not just the body, but the spirit too.
Please help me to comfort the sick people in my life, just like You do.
We ask this in Jesus’s name, Amen. 

October 15 // Live like Jesus.

Read John 11:5 out loud with your family.

 

Ask the following question and discuss the answer together as a family.

 

Q: Besides healing, feeding, and teaching people, what did Jesus do during His ministry? 

 

Parent Note: He rested and spent time with his friends. Every aspect of Jesus' life is meant to serve as an example of how we are to live our lives. Here, Jesus is showing us how important it is to have friends and spend time with them. 

 

FAMILY PRAYER:

Read the following prayer out loud. Have your kids repeat after you:

 

Dear God, thank You for the example set for me in Jesus.
I know that as long as I follow his footsteps, I will be close to You.
Please help me to live life the way Jesus did.
We ask this in Jesus’s name, Amen. 

October 13 // Jesus changes us.

Read Luke 19:8 out loud with your family.

 

Ask the following question and discuss the answer together as a family.

 

Q: Do we have to pay back people we’ve sinned against like Zacchaeus did? 

 

Parent Note: Admitting that we were wrong and apologizing to anyone we’ve sinned against is never a bad idea. Zacchaeus responded this way because he was led by the Holy Spirit to make amends with people in his community in this way. If Zacchaeus hadn’t decided to repay those he had wronged, Jesus still would have forgiven him. We can never earn our forgiveness; it is only through Jesus’ sacrifice that we are forgiven and saved when we repent. 

 

FAMILY PRAYER:

Read the following prayer out loud. Have your kids repeat after you:

 

Dear God, thank You for forgiving me no matter what.
I know that your mercy is a free gift, and I could never do enough to pay you back.
Please help me to live a life of transformation like Zacchaeus.
We ask this in Jesus’s name, Amen. 

October 12 // Jesus loves sinners.

Read Luke 19:7 out loud with your family.

 

Ask the following question and discuss the answer together as a family.

 

Q: When you’re watching you’re a competition, do you like to root for the favorite or the underdog? 

 

Parent Note: Underdogs are the teams or people expected to lose the competition. Much like we hope that, against all odds, the underdogs will win, we hope that sinners will be forgiven. That’s the beauty of Jesus! He loves us, no matter what we’ve done. While underdogs may not always win, sinners who ask for forgiveness are always forgiven. 

 

FAMILY PRAYER:

Read the following prayer out loud. Have your kids repeat after you:

 

Dear God, thank You for loving me even as a sinner.
I know that Your forgiveness is always there.
Please help me to abandon my sin and turn to You.
We ask this in Jesus’s name, Amen. 

October 11 // Jesus wants to spend time with us.

Read Luke 19:5 out loud with your family.

 

Ask the following question and discuss the answer together as a family.

 

Q: How would you react if Jesus told you He was coming over for dinner tonight? 

 

Parent Note: While it would be super cool to have dinner face to face with Jesus, we should always remember, that He’s always with us. So technically, we have dinner with Him every night! 

 

FAMILY PRAYER:

Read the following prayer out loud. Have your kids repeat after you:

 

Dear God, thank You for always being with me.
I know that even if I can’t see or hear You, You are still there.
Please help me to be closer to You today.
We ask this in Jesus’s name, Amen. 

October 10 // We can be close to Jesus.

Read Luke 19:4 out loud with your family.

 

Ask the following question and discuss the answer together as a family.

 

Q: Can you think of some other creative solutions to Zacchaeus’s problem? 

 

Parent Note: He could have asked someone to put him on his or her shoulders. He could have brought a ladder to set up near the crowd. Better yet, he could have asked the people in front of him if they would let him through so he could see. He went through a lot of trouble to see Jesus, when an easy solution was available. 

 

FAMILY PRAYER:

Read the following prayer out loud. Have your kids repeat after you:

 

Dear God, thank You for making Yourself available to me through Jesus.
I know that You want to have a close relationship, and You made a way.
Please help me to see You in everything I do.
We ask this in Jesus’s name, Amen.

October 9 // Jesus taught many.

Read Luke 19:3 out loud with your family.

 

Ask the following question and discuss the answer together as a family.

 

Q: Have you been to a concert or an event in a huge stadium or arena? 

 

Parent Note: Sometimes at big venues like these, it’s hard to see the stage where the band or other type of act is performing. There was a lot of talk about Jesus and that caused more and more people to want to see Jesus. Each time He appeared in public, people would crowd around Him to hear Him teach.

 

FAMILY PRAYER:

Read the following prayer out loud. Have your kids repeat after you:

 

Dear God, thank You for sending Jesus to teach us more about You.
I know that he is Your son, and is perfect in every way.
Please help me to learn from Jesus’s words and use them in my life.
We ask this in Jesus’s name, Amen. 

October 8 // Be generous.

Read Luke 19:2 out loud with your family.

 

Ask the following question and discuss the answer together as a family.

 

Q: If someone gave you $20 to buy something that costs $15, is it okay to keep the change? 

 

Parent Note: No, that’s stealing! Now, imagine you told this person that the thing they wanted wasn’t $15, it was $25 so that you could keep even more of their money. That is what Zacchaeus was doing. He was telling people that they owed more tax money than they actually did, and then he kept the excess. That makes him a liar and a thief. 

 

FAMILY PRAYER:

Read the following prayer out loud. Have your kids repeat after you:

 

Dear God, thank You for being generous.
I know that everything I have is a gift from You.
Please help me to be generous with what You’ve given me.
We ask this in Jesus’s name, Amen. 

October 6 // Love everyone.

Read Luke 10:36-37 out loud with your family.


Ask the following question and discuss the answer together as a family.


Q: Why do you think Jesus told this parable to the people listening?

Parent Note: Jesus gave us two commandments: Love our God with all our hearts, souls, strength, and minds; love our neighbor as ourselves. Neighbor means everyone—not just the people who live next door to us, the people we go to church with, or our family and friends. Everyone means people we don't like, people who live in different places, people who don't believe in Jesus, people we don't know. When we encounter someone in need we should help them in whatever way we are able. 

 

 

FAMILY PRAYER:

Read the following prayer out loud. Have your kids repeat after you:


Dear God, thank You for explaining to us that we should love and help everyone just as You do. Help us to reach out and show our neighbors Your love.
We ask these things in Jesus' name, Amen. 

October 5 // Be a helper.

Read Luke 10:35 out loud with your family.

 


Ask the following question and discuss the answer together as a family.



Q: How much money would you spend to make sure Darth Vader survived after an attack? 


Parent Note: The hatred between Jews and Samaritans was mutual, and yet this one Samaritan not only helped get this injured Jew to a nearby inn, he paid money to make sure that the innkeeper took care of him. The only thing the Samaritan knew about the injured traveler was that he was Jewish—but the Samaritan helped him anyway. This is what Jesus calls us to do. No matter who the person is, no matter what culture he or she is a part of, we are to help in any way we can. 

 


FAMILY PRAYER:


Read the following prayer out loud. Have your kids repeat after you:


Dear God, thank You for loving me.
I know that Jesus gave all he had to save me.
Help me to be a help others, no matter who they are.
We ask these things in Jesus' name, Amen.

October 4 // An unlikely hero.

Read Luke 10:33 out loud with your family.



Ask the following question and discuss the answer together as a family.



Q: Who do you think is the meanest, most evil character in a book, movie, or TV show? 


Parent Note: Then ask them how surprised they would be if this character stopped to help them like the Samaritan did for the injured traveler. In Jesus’ time, Samaritans were despised for a number of reasons. Jesus chose to use a Samaritan in this parable because they were the most unlikely group of people from which the listeners would expect to find a hero. 


 


FAMILY PRAYER:


Read the following prayer out loud. Have your kids repeat after you:


Dear God, thank You for loving all people.
I know that no matter what I have done, You can still use me for Your good purposes.
Help me to obey You by loving others.
We ask these things in Jesus' name, Amen.

October 3 // See others.

Read Luke 10:31-32 out loud with your family.



Ask the following question and discuss the answer together as a family.



Q: If you were invisible, what parts of that do you think would be cool and what would be bad? 


Parent Note: Let your child be creative and give answers. The priest and the temple assistant treated the injured traveler as if he were invisible. We shouldn’t treat people that way. Instead, we should always keep our eyes open and looking for ways to help others.



FAMILY PRAYER:


Read the following prayer out loud. Have your kids repeat after you:


Dear God, thank You for seeing me.
I know that I can’t hide from Your love.
Help me to look for ways to share Your love with other people.
We ask these things in Jesus' name, Amen.

October 2 // Help each other.

Read Luke 10:31-33 out loud with your family.


 

Ask the following question and discuss the answer together as a family.



Q: Have you ever been badly hurt?  



Parent Note: When they were hurt, did they need someone to help them? Did anyone help them? This poor traveler was hurt so badly that he couldn’t care for himself. His survival relied upon the help of others. How desperate he must have felt as a potential rescuer just passed by him! 


 


FAMILY PRAYER:


Read the following prayer out loud. Have your kids repeat after you:


Dear God, thank You for helping me.
I know that You saved me wen I couldn’t save myself.
Help me to see and help others.
We ask these things in Jesus' name, Amen.