Wednesday: Mercy

Pray: Begin by making the sign of the cross and calling upon God’s name.

From God to us, from death to life, from me to you … in the name of the Father, and of the Son + and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

Almighty God, thank you for showing us mercy, and for caring for us each and every day. Help us to grow closer to you as we study your Word now. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.

Listen: Pay close attention as these verses from the Bible are read aloud.

Luke 1:42
The Holy Spirit came upon Elizabeth. Then in a loud voice she said to Mary: “God has blessed you more than any other woman! He has also blessed the child you will have.” (CEV)

Engage: Talk about the Bible by having parents respond to children’s questions.

Child: Elizabeth said that Mary was “blessed.” What does it mean to be blessed by God? In what ways has God blessed you with good things?

Child: Do you think God can use people like us to be a blessing to others? How might that happen?

Affirm: Pray for God to put his Word into action in your daily life.

God of grace, thank you for good friends and relatives, who give us courage and strength. May we lift up the people around us, and help them see the blessings in their lives. We ask this in the name of Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Have each person in the family bless one another with these words.

May you be a blessing to others! Amen.

Tuesday: Struggle

Pray: Begin by making the sign of the cross and calling upon God’s name.

From God to us, from death to life, from me to you …in the name of the Father, and of the Son + and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

Lord God, please guide us today, as we continue to study your Word. Help us to share the good news of Jesus with others, as Mary did. In the name of Jesus Christ we pray. Amen.

Listen: Pay close attention as these verses from the Bible are read aloud.

Luke 1:39-41
A short time later Mary hurried to a town in the hill country of Judea. She went into Zechariah’s home, where she greeted Elizabeth. When Elizabeth heard Mary’s greeting, her baby moved within her. (CEV)

Engage: Talk about the Bible by having parents respond to children’s questions.

Child: Who are some of your relatives? Elizabeth was a relative of Mary. Why do relatives often get together on special occasions?

Child: Elizabeth’s baby moved within her when he heard Mary’s voice. Have you ever seen a baby move in its mother’s tummy? Have you ever felt it? What is that like?

Affirm: Pray for God to put his Word into action in your daily life.

Heavenly Father, no matter what is going on in the world, a baby is a sign of hope. Bless expectant mothers and newborns everywhere, and thank you for sending your own son into our world, to help and save us. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.

Have each person in the family bless one another with these words.

May you share the good news of Jesus with others! Amen.

Monday: Understanding

Pray: Begin by making the sign of the cross and calling upon God's name.

From God to us, from death to life, from me to you …in the name of the Father, and of the Son + and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

O God, as we look forward to the fun of Christmas, may we never forget the true “reason for the season.” Be with us now, as we learn more of our Savior’s story. We ask this through Jesus Christ, our Lord. Amen.

Listen: Pay close attention as these verses from the Bible are read aloud.

Luke 1:39-45
A short time later Mary hurried to a town in the hill country of Judea. She went into Zechariah’s home, where she greeted Elizabeth. When Elizabeth heard Mary’s greeting, her baby moved within her. The Holy Spirit came upon Elizabeth.

Then in a loud voice she said to Mary: “God has blessed you more than any other woman! He has also blessed the child you will have. Why should the mother of my Lord come to me? As soon as I heard your greeting, my baby became happy and moved within me. The Lord has blessed you because you believed that he will keep his promise.” (CEV)

Engage: Talk about the Bible by having parents respond to children’s questions.

Child: How did Elizabeth react when she saw Mary? How did Elizabeth’s baby respond? How might you have reacted if you were at Elizabeth’s house that day.

Child: The Holy Spirit who came to Elizabeth is also our Helper and Comforter. Can you think of a time in your life when the Holy Spirit helped you in some way? Tell us about that.

Affirm: Pray for God to put his Word into action in your daily life.

Heavenly Father, thank you for the gift of your son, Jesus! May we receive him into our lives joyfully, as Elizabeth did so long ago. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.

Have each person in the family bless one another with these words:

May you be filled with joy! Amen.

Sunday: Worship

Pray:  Begin by making the sign of the cross and calling upon God’s name.

From God to us, from death to life, from me to you … in the name of the Father, and of the Son + and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

Gracious Lord God, stir up your Holy Spirit in us now, as we settle in to study your Word. Teach us, and help us to follow you. In the name of Jesus Christ, we pray. Amen.

Listen: Pay close attention as these verses from the Bible are read aloud.

Psalm 119:57-58
The LORD is my portion; I promise to keep your words. I entreat your favor with all my heart; be gracious to me according to your promise. (ESV)

Engage: Talk about the Bible by having parents respond to children’s questions.

Child: When we say that we will obey God, what does that mean? Are there times when it is easier to obey than other times?

Child: God has promised to be kind to us. Do you think God ever uses a hard time in our lives to bring about something good? How might that actually be kind?

Affirm: Pray for God to put his Word into action in your daily life.

Lord God, we want to obey you, but sometimes that is hard to do. Please help us. Make us into the people you would have us be. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.

Have each person in the family bless one another with these words.

May you follow Jesus! Amen.

Saturday: Generosity

Pray: Begin by making the sign of the cross and calling upon God’s name.

From God to us, from death to life, from me to you … in the name of the Father, and of the Son + and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

Mighty Lord, you bless us, day after day, with family, friends, food, and so many other things. Thank you for all of it, and for being with us now. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.

Listen: Pay close attention as these verses from the Bible are read aloud.

Luke 1:36-38
[The angel said to Mary,] “Your relative Elizabeth is also going to have a son, even though she is old. No one thought she could ever have a baby, but in three months she will have a son. Nothing is impossible for God!” Mary said, “I am the Lord’s servant! Let it happen as you have said.” And the angel left her. (CEV)

Engage: Talk about the Bible by having parents respond to children’s questions.

Child: Have you ever received very surprising news, and not known what to do? Was it hard for you to trust God with the outcome? Why or why not?

Child: Mary said she was the Lord’s servant. What do you think she meant by that? How can we be God’s servants even today?

Affirm: Pray for God to put his Word into action in your daily life.

Dear Lord, thank you for this day, and for these good people here. Help us to notice all that you do for us, and to serve you trustingly, in return. We ask this in Jesus’ name. Amen.

Have each person in the family bless one another with these words.

May you serve God today! Amen.

 

 

Friday: Trust

Pray: Begin by making the sign of the cross and calling upon God’s name.

From God to us, from death to life, from me to you …
in the name of the Father, and of the Son + and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

O God, as we study the Catechism today, may we understand it better and learn to trust you more. In Jesus’ name we pray, amen.

Listen: Pay close attention to this reminder from Luther’s Small Catechism.

I believe that Jesus Christ — true God, begotten of the Father from eternity, and also true man, born of the Virgin Mary — is my Lord. He has redeemed me, a lost and condemned creature, and has freed me from sin, death, and the power of the devil. (Luther’s Small Catechism)

Engage: Talk about the Bible by having parents respond to children’s questions.

Child: Long ago, a “lord” was someone who looked out for people in his care. Why do we call Jesus our “Lord” today? What are some other names for Jesus?

Child: Martin Luther said that Jesus saved him when he was lost. Have you ever been lost before? What happened? How can Jesus help us when we have lost our way?

Affirm: Pray for God to put his Word into action in your daily life.

Heavenly Father, you care about each one of your children, and you search for those who are lost. Thank you for never giving up on us. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.

Have each person in the family bless one another with these words.

May you thank God today! Amen.

Thursday: Compassion

Pray: Begin by making the sign of the cross and calling upon God’s name.

From God to us, from death to life, from me to you …
in the name of the Father, and of the Son + and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

Dear God, we are so thankful that you lovingly watch over us. Help us to care for others who may be struggling with heavy burdens this season. In the name of Jesus Christ, we pray. Amen.

Listen: Pay close attention as the Bible story is read in the form of a rhyme.

Mary, who was young and sweet,
Was, indeed, surprised to meet
Someone who appeared at night;
‘Twas an angel, filled with light!

“Do not be afraid, Dear One,
For in time you’ll have a son!
God is happy with you, too,
That’s why he sent me to you.”

“How can this all be?” She said.
“I’m not married; I’m not wed.”
“God will make a way, somehow,”
Said the angel, “Trust him now.”

Engage: Talk about the Bible by having parents respond to children’s questions.

Child: Why do you think the angel told Mary not to be afraid? Do you think the angel’s words helped Mary feel better? Why or why not?

Child: Mary was going to have to trust God with her future. Why? How does trusting God with the future help us deal with all the uncertain things in life?

Affirm: Pray for God to put his Word into action in your daily life.

Holy God, thank you for sending your Son into our world, which so needed a Savior. And thank you for Mary and Joseph, who received him in true faith. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.

Have each person in the family bless one another with these words.

May you know how much God cares for you!  Amen.