Daily Devos: Jesus Calls The Fishermen

PRAYER:  Dear Jesus, we thank you for being our light in the darkness, our friend on the road, our leader and guide.  Help us to come and follow you, all the way to the cross and beyond.  In your name we pray, Amen.

COLORING SHEET: https://www.activityshelter.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/03/fish-coloring-page-for-kids.jpg

BIBLE STORY:  Matthew 4:12-23 (NRSV)

12Now when Jesus heard that John had been arrested, he withdrew to Galilee. 13He left Nazareth and made his home in Capernaum by the sea, in the territory of Zebulun and Naphtali, 14so that what had been spoken through the prophet Isaiah might be fulfilled:
15“Land of Zebulun, land of Naphtali,
  on the road by the sea, across the Jordan, Galilee of the Gentiles—
16the people who sat in darkness have seen a great light,
 and for those who sat in the region and shadow of death light has dawned.”
17From that time Jesus began to proclaim, “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven has come near.”
  18As he walked by the Sea of Galilee, he saw two brothers, Simon, who is called Peter, and Andrew his brother, casting a net into the sea—for they were fishermen. 19And he said to them, “Follow me, and I will make you fish for people.” 20Immediately they left their nets and followed him. 21As he went from there, he saw two other brothers, James son of Zebedee and his brother John, in the boat with their father Zebedee, mending their nets, and he called them. 22Immediately they left the boat and their father, and followed him.
  23Jesus went throughout Galilee, teaching in their synagogues and proclaiming the good news of the kingdom and curing every disease and every sickness among the people.

QUESTIONS: 

  • Why do you think Jesus chose fishermen as his first disciples?
  • What do you think it means to “fish for people”?
  • What are some ways that you can to what you are good at while showing people how much God loves them?

Summer Special: Faith Shapes and Devos to Go

During the summer months, many of our families are not physically present with us, or are present infrequently, due to sports, vacations, county fairs, etc. I wanted to provide a way to deepen faith on the go and still connect to worship when they could attend. The resources are in two parts: Faith Shapes and Devos to Go

Faith Shapes

Faith Shapes is a set of large play dough mat cards that we will use in worship. They include a symbol to fill in with dough, as well as a quote from a gospel lesson from the Sundays in Easter. We are returning to these lessons because the season of Pentecost focuses on growth in the Spirit. As Jesus tells his disciples:

The Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you everything, and remind you of all that I have said to you.

John 14:25 NRSV

I printed each symbol out one-sided on cardstock and then ran them through my Xyron Creative Station laminator two at a time with the symbols facing out. I wanted them to be sturdy for use over and over. I put them together in a booklet, punched a hole, and loosely attached to one another with a zip tie. In the end, they looked like this:

In worship, I provided Crayola Dough (which has a pleasant smell and is less crumbly than other brands) and medium-sized trays to try to keep the mess off of our fabric-covered pews.

Devos to Go

The second resource is Devos to Go. Its goal is to help children and youth (and adults!) to take their faith with them in the spirit of Deuteronomy :

You shall put these words of mine in your heart and soul, and you shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and fix them as an emblem on your forehead. 19 Teach them to your children, talking about them when you are at home and when you are away, when you lie down and when you rise. 20 Write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates, 21 so that your days and the days of your children may be multiplied in the land that the Lord swore to your ancestors to give them, as long as the heavens are above the earth.

Deuteronomy 11:18-21 NRSV

Each card has a symbol which corresponds to the ones we are using in worship, an NRSV Bible story, questions to discuss, and a prayer.

I printed this resource two-sided on cardstock and ran them through my Xyron Creative Station laminator. I also put them together in a booklet, punched a hole with an awl, and bound them together with a short zip tie. I plan to give them out at the end of worship every week to those who don’t have them, and make more if needed. They will also receive a baggie of dough or two dry erase markers (whichever one their parents agree to, based on age and level of mess tolerance). I sent them on vacation with my own children, and gave them dry erase markers for the car, and dough for outside on the deck at their grandparents’ house. Here’s what this resource looks like:

Ready to try it out for yourself and your family? You can find both resources here: https://familygodtime.files.wordpress.com/2019/06/faith-shapes-and-devos-to-go-summer-2019.pdf They are intertwined to save paper. God bless your faith time, both gathered and scattered, this summer!

Daily Devos: Come, Holy Spirit

PENTECOST:  ACTS 2:1-4 (NRSV)

When the day of Pentecost had come, [the apostles] were all together in one place. 2And suddenly from heaven there came a sound like the rush of a violent wind, and it filled the entire house where they were sitting. 3Divided tongues, as of fire, appeared among them, and a tongue rested on each of them. 4All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other languages, as the Spirit gave them ability. 

  • Why do you think that the Holy Spirit comes in wind, fire, and language?  How do you experience the Holy Spirit?  What is the Spirit stirring up in you?

Holy Spirit, Breath of Life, breathe the fire of your love into us.  Shape us, give us life, make us whole.  Help us to spread the love of Christ to the ends of the earth.  In Jesus’ name we pray, Amen.

Find a pdf of this devotion here: https://familygodtime.files.wordpress.com/2019/06/daily-devos-19-come-holy-spirit.pdf

Daily Devos: Jesus Ascends to Heaven

ASCENSION:  ACTS 1:8-11

[Jesus said] “You will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.” 9When he had said this, as they were watching, he was lifted up, and a cloud took him out of their sight. 10While he was going and they were gazing up toward heaven, suddenly two men in white robes stood by them. 11They said, “Men of Galilee, why do you stand looking up toward heaven? This Jesus, who has been taken up from you into heaven, will come in the same way as you saw him go into heaven.” 

  • Why do you think that Jesus ascends to heaven, instead of staying on earth? 
  • Why send the Holy Spirit? 
  • What are you looking forward to?

Risen Christ, thank you for making a place for us in heaven.  Send your Holy Spirit among us, that we may be your risen people.  In Jesus’ name we pray.  Amen.

Find a PDF of this devotion here: https://familygodtime.files.wordpress.com/2019/05/daily-devos-18-jesus-ascends.pdf

Daily Devos: Jesus Makes a Home with Us

HOME:  JOHN 14:23-26

Jesus answered [Judas (not Iscariot),] “Those who love me will keep my word, and my Father will love them, and we will come to them and make our home with them. 24Whoever does not love me does not keep my words; and the word that you hear is not mine, but is from the Father who sent me.
  25“I have said these things to you while I am still with you. 26But the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you everything, and remind you of all that I have said to you. 

  • Where is the place that you call home? 
  • What difference does it make to know that God is at home with you there, as well? 
  • What do you think of the Holy Spirit? 
  • Where does the Spirit show up in your life?

Risen Christ, thank you for making your home with us, and for sending your Holy Spirit to teach us and remind us of your presence.  Fill us with your abiding love.  In Jesus’ name we pray, Amen.

Download this devotion as a pdf here: https://familygodtime.files.wordpress.com/2019/05/daily-devos-jesus-makes-a-home-with-us-19.pdf

Daily Devos: Love One Another

LOVE:  JOHN 13:31-35 NRSV

When he had gone out, Jesus said, “Now the Son of Man has been glorified, and God has been glorified in him. 32If God has been glorified in him, God will also glorify him in himself and will glorify him at once. 33Little children, I am with you only a little longer. You will look for me; and as I said to the Jews so now I say to you, ‘Where I am going, you cannot come.’ 34I give you a new commandment, that you love one another. Just as I have loved you, you also should love one another. 35By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.”

  • What are some ways that God shows love for you? What are some ways that others show you they love you?  How do you show your love for others?

Risen Christ, thank you for loving us enough to go to the cross for us.  Help us to obey your commandment, to love another as you first loved us.  In Jesus’ name we pray, Amen.

Daily Devos: Jesus the Good Shepherd

THE GOOD SHEPHERD: JOHN 10:25-30 NRSV

25Jesus answered, “I have told you, and you do not believe. The works that I do in my Father’s name testify to me; 26but you do not believe, because you do not belong to my sheep. 27My sheep hear my voice. I know them, and they follow me. 28I give them eternal life, and they will never perish. No one will snatch them out of my hand. 29What my Father has given me is greater than all else, and no one can snatch it out of the Father’s hand. 30The Father and I are one.”

  •     What are some ways that you listen for God?  What does it mean to you to know that no one can snatch you out of God’s hands?

Risen Christ, thank you for making us your sheep.  Open our ears to hear your voice, that we may learn to follow you.  In Jesus’ name we pray, Amen.