Daily Devos: Jesus is Transfigured

Here is a new section of Family God Time:  Daily Devos!  In our family, we read the verses for the day while the food is being served for supper, and discuss the questions as we eat.  We pray the prayer before we leave the table.

You can get the whole week of devotions in a pdf file here:  Daily Devos Book Jesus is Transfigured 18

I hope this time will be a holy time for you and your family!

JESUS IS TRANSFIGURED:  MARK 9:2-8

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PRAYER OF THE WEEK: Dear Jesus, this week we will take God’s advice and listen to you… (quiet time to listen) In your name we pray, Amen.

SUNDAY

MARK 9:2-3 Six days later, Jesus took with him Peter and James and John, and led them up a high mountain apart, by themselves.  And he was transfigured before them, and his clothes became dazzling white, such as no one on earth could bleach them.

QUESTIONS:  Have you ever been blinded by the sun?  What was that experience like?  What do you think it would have been like to be blinded by Jesus?  How would you have felt?

MONDAY

MARK 9:4-6 And there appeared to them Elijah with Moses, who were talking with Jesus.  Then Peter said to Jesus, “Rabbi, it is good for us to be here; let us make three dwellings, one for you, one for Moses, and one for Elijah.”   He did not know what to say, for they were terrified. 

QUESTIONS:  Have you ever gotten the opportunity to speak with someone who you thought was very important?  What was that experience like?  Who would you speak to, if you could?  What would it be like to speak with Jesus?

TUESDAY

MARK 9:7-8 Then a cloud overshadowed them, and from the cloud there came a voice, “This is my Son, the Beloved; listen to him!”  Suddenly when they looked around, they saw no one with them any more, but only Jesus.

QUESTIONS:  In this section, God tells us who Jesus is related to, and gives us an opportunity to think about this for ourselves.  Whose daughter or son are you?  Who loves you?  Who do you listen to?  Hold your answers to these questions closely as we enter together into the season of Lent!

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Children’s Devotion Time February 2018: Jesus is Transfigured

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One of the churches in our parish has begun having inter-generational Sunday School once per month.  We call it “Children’s Devotion Time” or “CDT.”  Each child in the class has an older adult who serves as an individual mentor during devotion time.  It includes an opening prayer, a large group Bible Story, an age-appropriate leaflet about the day that they work on in child/adult pairs, a closing prayer, and a simple craft.  It is based on Family God Time, but done at church and for a larger group.  Join us in this new faith formation experiment!

You can learn more about just how we have set this up here: Children’s Devotion Time Instructions

Large Group Gathering Prayer: (Do this prayer repeat-after-me style)
Dear Jesus, we thank you for this time to learn more about how you truly God’s Son.  Help us to learn and grow together.  In Jesus’ name we pray, Amen.

Large Group Bible Story:  Mark 9:2-9
Read about the Transfiguration in a children’s Bible, your own Bible, or you can find the story here:   https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Mark+9%3A2-9&version=ERV

We used the Spark Story Bible for our resource.  It was the story called “The Transfiguration.”  You can purchase your own copy here:  https://www.augsburgfortress.org/store/product/8122/Spark-Story-Bible-Sunday-School-Edition

Work in Pairs:
Each child/adult pair has a four-page leaflet to work on which is developmentally appropriate for the child.  They work through the leaflet together, taking as much time as they need.  This month, we used the children’s bulletin from Spark, available on Sundays and Seasons.  You can use the children’s bulletin from your church.

Large Group Closing Prayer: (Do this prayer repeat-after-me style)
Dear Jesus, we thank you that you are God’s Son.  Help us to always listen to you.  In your name we pray, Amen.

Activity:  Bury the Alleluia
One tradition that our churches practice on Transfiguration Sunday is to prepare for Lent (which begins on the  Wednesday after Transfiguration Sunday) by burying the Alleluia.  We say goodbye to the Alleluia because it is a celebration word that we save until the miracle of Easter.  You can learn more about this practice here:  https://www.buildfaith.org/saying-goodbye-to-the-alleluia/#gref

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Supplies Needed
A small box (we used shiny jewelry boxes)
A print out of the coloring Alleluia or “tracing” Alleluia on cardstock:  Transfiguration Alleluia 18Transfiguration Trace Alleluia 18
Scissors or paper cutter
Tape (we used gold washi tape)
coloring utensils

Instructions

    1. Cut out the individual letters of the Alleluia. Our younger ones will use the “tracing” Alleluia, and the older ones the “coloring” Alleluia.
    2. Tape them together on the back, accordion style.
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    3. Decorate them as you wish.
    4. Once they are decorated, sing a little Alleluia song. Our favorites are “Halle, Halle, Hallelujah” and the “Celtic Alleluia.”
    5. Fold your Alleluia up and place it in the box. Tape the box shut, and write “Do not open until Easter” on the tape.IMG_20180209_095854279_HDR
    6. Hide your box in an out of the way place that you will still remember by Easter.
    7. (I am planning to put jingle bracelets in the boxes and re-tape them just before Easter. We will open them in church on Easter morning!)

© 2018 by Pastor Breen Marie Sipes, Tri-Saints Lutheran Parish, Byron and Hardy, Nebraska.  https://familygodtime.wordpress.com Please give credit where credit is due!

Daily Devos: Jesus Heals Many at Simon’s House

Here is a new section of Family God Time:  Daily Devos!  In our family, we read the verses for the day while the food is being served for supper, and discuss the questions as we eat.  We pray the prayer before we leave the table.

You can get the whole week of devotions in a pdf file here:  Daily Devos Book Jesus Heals at Simon’s House 18

I hope this time will be a holy time for you and your family!

JESUS HEALS MANY AT SIMON’S HOUSE:  MARK 1:29-39

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PRAYER OF THE WEEK:  Dear God, we thank you that you call us from death into lives of service.  We ask that your love would create a healing community among us.  In Jesus’ name we pray, Amen.

SUNDAY

MARK 1:29 As soon as [Jesus and the disciples] left the synagogue, they entered the house of Simon and Andrew, with James and John.

QUESTIONS:  Have you ever visited a friend’s house before?  What was that experience like?  What do you think about the idea that Jesus had friends while he was on earth?

 MONDAY

MARK 1:30-31 Now Simon’s mother-in-law was in bed with a fever, and they told him about her at once. He came and took her by the hand and lifted her up. Then the fever left her, and she began to serve them.

QUESTIONS:  Have you ever been in bed with a fever before?  What was that experience like?  What was it like to know that you were healed?  What do you make of the fact that Jesus has the power to heal like this?

TUESDAY

 

MARK 1:32-33 That evening, at sunset, they brought to him all who were sick or possessed with demons. And the whole city was gathered around the door.

QUESTIONS:  Have you ever been to the doctor and waited in a waiting room?  What was that experience like?  Why do you think that the whole city gathered at the door to see Jesus?

WEDNESDAY

 

MARK 1:34 And [Jesus] cured many who were sick with various diseases, and cast out many demons; and he would not permit the demons to speak, because they knew him.

QUESTIONS:  Have you ever wanted to go someplace where no one knew who you were?  What made you feel this way?  Why do you think that Jesus did not want people to know who he really was?

THURSDAY

MARK 1:35 In the morning, while it was still very dark, [Jesus] got up and went out to a deserted place, and there he prayed.
QUESTIONS:  Have you ever wanted some time to yourself?  What do you make of the fact that Jesus needed time to himself?  When you pray, do you pray in a group or on your own?  What are the benefits of each of these ways of praying?

FRIDAY

MARK 1:36-37 And Simon and his companions hunted for him. When they found him, they said to him, “Everyone is searching for you.”

QUESTIONS:  Have you ever played hide and seek?  What was that experience like?  Why do you think that the disciples were hunting for Jesus?

SATURDAY

MARK 1:38-39 He answered, “Let us go on to the neighboring towns, so that I may proclaim the message there also; for that is what I came out to do.” And he went throughout Galilee, proclaiming the message in their synagogues and casting out demons.

QUESTIONS:  Have you ever taken a long trip?  What was that experience like?  Why do you think that Jesus is always on the move?

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Image, Prayer of the Week and Questions ©Pastor Breen Marie Sipes, Tri-Saints Lutheran Parish, ELCA 2017. Please give credit where credit is due.

New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright © 1989 the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of  Christ in the United States of America.  Used by permission.  http://www.biblegateway.com All rights reserved.

 

Daily Devos: An Unclean Spirit Mark 1:21-28

Here is a new section of Family God Time:  Daily Devos!  In our family, we read the verses for the day while the food is being served for supper, and discuss the questions as we eat.  We pray the prayer before we leave the table.

You can get the whole week of devotions in a pdf file here:  Daily Devos Book Unclean Spirit 18

I hope this time will be a holy time for you and your family!

A MAN WITH AN UNCLEAN SPIRIT:  MARK 1:21-28

Be silent

Prayer of the Week:  Dear Jesus, we thank you that you are powerful, and that you see us for who we really are.  Help us to hear your Word and gladly learn it.  In your name we pray, Amen.

SUNDAY

MARK 1:21 [Jesus and his disciples] went to Capernaum; and when the sabbath came, he entered the synagogue and taught.

BIG QUESTIONS:  Do you worship God with your family on Sundays?  What is that experience like?  Why do you think that Jesus decided to go to church (the synagogue) and teach?

MONDAY

MARK 1:22 They were astounded at his teaching, for he taught them as one having authority, and not as the scribes.

BIG QUESTIONS:  What do you think it would have been like to be taught by Jesus?  Who is someone in your life who you trust to teach you?

TUESDAY

MARK 1:23-24 Just then there was in their synagogue a man with an unclean spirit, and he cried out, “What have you to do with us, Jesus of Nazareth? Have you come to destroy us? I know who you are, the Holy One of God.”

BIG QUESTIONS:  Have you ever recognized someone who you haven’t seen for a long time?  What was that experience like?  Why do you think that an unclean spirit recognized Jesus?

WEDNESDAY

MARK 1:25 But Jesus rebuked him, saying, “Be silent, and come out of him!”

BIG QUESTIONS:  Has anyone ever told you that you had to be quiet?  What was that experience like?  Why do you think that Jesus told the unclean spirit to be quiet and come out of the man?

THURSDAY

MARK 1:26 And the unclean spirit, convulsing him and crying with a loud voice, came out of him.

BIG QUESTIONS:  How do you think the man who was released from the unclean spirit felt about Jesus?  Why do you think that it matters that unclean spirits listen to and obey Jesus?

FRIDAY

MARK 1:27 They were all amazed, and they kept on asking one another, “What is this? A new teaching—with authority! He commands even the unclean spirits, and they obey him.”

BIG QUESTIONS:  Who are some people who have authority over you?  What is that experience like?  Why do you think the crowd was so confused by Jesus’ power and authority?

SATURDAY

MARK 1:28 At once his fame began to spread throughout the surrounding region of Galilee.

BIG QUESTIONS:  Who is the most famous person that you have ever met?  What was that experience like?  What famous person would you like to meet?  Why?  How do you think Jesus felt about becoming famous?

Transfiguration: Matthew 17:1-8

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Gathering Prayer: (Do this prayer repeat-after-me style)
Dear Jesus, we thank you for time to feed our faith as a family, and time to learn about a time when Jesus showed his disciples who he really was.  Help our time to be a holy time.  In Jesus’ name we pray, Amen.

Bible Story:  Matthew 17:1-8
Read the story of Jesus’ Transfiguration in a children’s Bible, your own Bible, or you can find the story here:
https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Matthew+17%3A1-8&version=NRSV

Discuss as a family:
Why do you think Jesus brought his friends up the mountain?
What do you think Jesus talked about with Moses and Elijah?
Why do you think Jesus’ friends wanted to stay on the mountain?
What did the voice from heaven say about Jesus?  What do you think that means?

Song:  I Want to Walk as a Child of the Light
This song is one of my favorites for the season of Epiphany, which concludes this Sunday.  It talks about how bright our world is because of Jesus.  If it is not a familiar song for you, you and your family can join in on the chorus.

Craft:  Paper Folded Stars
Because we have been star crazy through Advent, Christmas, and Epiphany, we thought that we would leave you with one final star.

A big thanks to this site for giving me a great idea:  https://www.bloglovin.com/blogs/felicity-quilts-4157993/tutorial-folded-fabric-star-ornaments-3772915437

The original is made out of fabric, but I simplified them for children with scrapbook paper.  Here is what ours look like:

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Supplies needed:
3 different patterns of scrapbook paper
Scissors
Stapler
Craft Glue
Button (We used star shaped ones from a Fourth of July project) or star sticker
Thin Ribbon
Hole Punch

Instructions:
1. Cut the scrapbook paper into 6 inch squares.  You will need one square of each pattern for a single star.

2. Fold each square diagonally one time.

3. Fold each square diagonally a second time.

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4. Stack in the order shown and staple together with one staple in the center.

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5. Glue the button/sticker in the center of the star to hide the staple.

6. Punch a hole in the top arm of the star and add a ribbon to hang it.

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Thanks for your commitment to faithfully feed your family’s faith!  I hope that this time was holy time for you.

Closing Prayer: (Do this prayer repeat-after-me style)
Dear Jesus, we thank you for your light in this world, and for showing us who Jesus really is.  Be the guiding star of our lives.  In your name we pray, Amen.

Crepes and Candles: Discovering Candlemas

Gathering Prayer: (Do this prayer repeat-after-me style)
Dear Jesus, we thank you for time to feed our faith as a family, and time to celebrate that spring is coming.  In your name we pray, Amen.

Celebration:  Candlemas
A few weeks ago, a great article was delivered to my email inbox from a great organization called Building Faith.  It talked about the origins of Groundhog Day as a religious celebration which included blessing the candles for the new year.  This celebration is called, appropriately, Candlemas.  This was intriguing to me, and I put the information in the back of my head, thinking, “This is cool.  Maybe we’ll try it sometimes.”  Then, I learned that it is also a holiday during which we eat crepes.  I LOVE crepes, and so does my family.  Candlemas instantly became my new favorite holiday.  I called my husband with the idea, and he couldn’t wait to do it together, so we did.

You and your family can learn all about Candlemas here:  http://www.buildfaith.org/candlemas/

Song:  Light of the World
When I told my kids that Candlemas was the celebration of Jesus as the light of the world, they instantly began singing this song from Vacation Bible School last year.  Enjoy!

Activity:  Crepes and Candles
My husband is the crepe maker in our family, and this is the recipe that he uses:

Because it was an impromptu celebration, our fillings were not particularly fancy this year.  We had savory crepes with scrambled eggs, sausage, and grated cheese, and sweet crepes with raspberry jam and chocolate hazelnut spread.  The fillings are limited only by your imagination.

Because of the candle emphasis of Candlemas, we ate by candlelight.  I got every LED candle that we owned, turned them on, and filled the table with flickering light.  It was lovely, and a beautifully relaxing way to celebrate the turning of the seasons towards spring.

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Not my kids, but you get the idea, right? photo by he-boden on flickr.com

Thanks for your commitment to faithfully feed your family’s faith!  I hope that this time was holy time for you.

Closing Prayer: (Do this prayer repeat-after-me style)
Dear Jesus, we thank you for your light in this world, and for the turning of the seasons.  Help us to see you in the returning light of spring.  In your name we pray, Amen.

Salt and Light: Matthew 5

Gathering Prayer: (Do this prayer repeat-after-me style)
Dear Jesus, we thank you for time to feed our faith as a family, and time to learn about how we are salt and light.  Help our time together to be holy time.  In your name we pray, Amen.

Bible Story:  Matthew 5:13-16
Read the story of the Sermon on the Mount in a children’s Bible, your own Bible, or you can find the story here:
https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=matthew+5%3A13-16&version=ERV

Discuss as a family:
What is your favorite salty thing?
What is your favorite source of light?
How do you think we are salt of the earth (hint:salt is used for seasoning, preservation, and healing)?
How do you think we are the light of the world?

Song:  This Little Light of Mine
This song is probably quite familiar to you.  Did you know the words came right from the mouth of Jesus?  Let your lights shine as you sing this song together!

Activity:  Salt Dough
I thought it would be fun to make something out of salt cough to remind us that we are the salt of the earth.  The basic salt sough recipe is 2 parts table salt and 2 parts flour to 1 part warm water.  I found that my dough was a bit sticky, so I added more flour until the dough was soft and easy to handle.

My idea was to take the “salt” dough and make a heart-shaped tea “light” holder, like this: http://lifeasmom.com/diy-on-a-dime-salt-dough-candle-holders/

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However, my kids had other, wonderful ideas.  They played with the dough for almost an hour, and then had me wrap it up tight in plastic wrap so they could use it again.  They have asked for it at least three other times this week, and it is a great distraction to play with at their little table in the kitchen while I have been making supper.  A devotion and a lifesaver, all in one!  No pictures this time, as they smashed their creations as fast as they made them.  I guess that’s the magic of the dough!

My kids and I have skin allergies, so I didn’t add color or scent to our dough.  You could most certainly do that, if you are so inclined.

Thanks for your commitment to faithfully feed your family’s faith!  I hope that this time was holy time for you.

Closing Prayer: (Do this prayer repeat-after-me style)
Dear Jesus, we thank you for making us salt and light in this world.  Help us to remember that you are the one who makes us truly shine.  In your name we pray, Amen.