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, as we hear more about Paul and his adventures, teach us to listen well, and to be thankful for the many good things in our lives. In the name of Jesus Christ we pray. Amen.

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

Acts 28:3-4
After Paul had gathered some wood and had put it on the fire, the heat caused a snake to crawl out, and it bit him on the hand. When the local people saw the snake hanging from Paul’s hand, they said to each other, “This man must be a murderer! He didn’t drown in the sea, but the goddess of justice will kill him anyway.” (CEV)

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

Child: Do you think Paul was frightened when the snake bit him on the hand? Why or why not? What would you have done if you were him?

Child: People turned on Paul and said terrible things about him. What’s the best way to respond when people say bad things about you?

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

Heavenly Father, when times are tough, we know we can always turn to you. Thank you for being our dearest and best friend. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.

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

May you face hard things with faith. 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, be with us now, as we hear your Word. Help us to focus on the story this week, and learn all that you would have us know. We ask this through Jesus Christ, our Lord. Amen.

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

Acts 28:1-9
When we came ashore, we learned that the island was called Malta. The local people were very friendly, and they welcomed us by building a fire, because it was rainy and cold.  After Paul had gathered some wood and had put it on the fire, the heat caused a snake to crawl out, and it bit him on the hand. When the local people saw the snake hanging from Paul’s hand, they said to each other, “This man must be a murderer! He didn’t drown in the sea, but the goddess of justice will kill him anyway.”

Paul shook the snake off into the fire and wasn’t harmed. The people kept thinking that Paul would either swell up or suddenly drop dead. They watched him for a long time, and when nothing happened to him, they changed their minds and said, “This man is a god.”

The governor of the island was named Publius, and he owned some of the land around there. Publius was very friendly and welcomed us into his home for three days. His father was in bed, sick with fever and stomach trouble, and Paul went to visit him. Paul healed the man by praying and placing his hands on him. After this happened, everyone on the island brought their sick people to Paul, and they were all healed. (CEV)

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

Child: What do you imagine it was like on the island of Malta, where Paul and his friends visited? Have you ever traveled somewhere really interesting? When?

Child: Why did the local people think Paul was a murderer, and then a god? Was either idea right? Why or why not?

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

Lord God, be with missionaries and others who travel to far off places. Keep them safe, and keep us safe in all our journeys, as well. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.

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

May you travel safely through the week! 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, thank you for this day of rest in our busy week. As we seek to worship you today, may we be refreshed by your life-giving Word. In the name of Jesus Christ, we pray. Amen.

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

Psalm 18:15a, 16-17
You roared at the sea, and its deepest channels could be seen...You reached down from heaven, and you lifted me from deep in the ocean. You rescued me from enemies, who were hateful and too powerful for me. (CEV)

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

Child: In Psalm 18, we see that God is more powerful than the ocean or anything on earth. How can knowing that comfort us?

Child: God rescued the psalm writer from his enemies. How might God do that for us in our own lives today?

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

Lord God, you are mighty and powerful. We praise you and thank you for caring for us, small though we are. Help us to look to you for all that we need. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.

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

May you look to God for help whenever you need it. 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, make us brave as we hear stories of courage from the Bible. Teach us what it means to lean on you. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.

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

Acts 27: 43-44
But Captain Julius wanted to save Paul’s life, and he did not let the soldiers do what they had planned. Instead, he ordered everyone who could swim to dive into the water and head for shore. Then he told the others to hold on to planks of wood or parts of the ship. At last, everyone safely reached shore. (CEV)

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

Child: Do you think Paul and the others were relieved to dive into the water and swim to shore, or just scared? What would you have wanted to do if you were in their shoes?

Child: The Bible tells us that everyone safely reached the shore after the shipwreck. Do you think this experience brought the sailors and prisoners closer together? Why or why not?

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

Dear Lord, you provided planks for the shipwrecked people to use as they floated to shore, and you give us what we need, too. Please watch over us each day, in good times and in bad. We ask this in Jesus’ name. Amen.

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

May you know that God is with you. 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, you want us to trust you, and you are completely trust-worthy. As we study today, help us to believe this in our heart. In Jesus’ name we pray, amen.

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

What is the significance of baptizing with water? It signifies that the old Adam in us, together with all sins and evil desires, should be drowned by daily sorrow for sin and repentance and be put to death, and that the new person should come forth every day and rise to live before God in righteousness and purity forever. (Luther’s Small Catechism)

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

Child: Luther’s Small Catechism tells us that after baptism, a “new person should come forth every day to live before God… in purity.” What do you think that means?

Child: Do you remember when I was baptized? What can you tell me about that day?

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

Heavenly Father, thank you for the gift of baptism, and for making us your daughters and sons. We love you, and are so happy that you love us, too! In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.

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

May you remember that you are God’s beloved child. 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.

Holy God, you love us, and because of this, you sent your Holy Spirit into our world to be our helper. Thank you for this, and for all of the ways you bless us. 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.

While sailing on a choppy sea,
With cold winds blowing gustily,
A ship was battered in the squall.
But on this ship rode faithful Paul.

Although he was a captive, too,
Paul prayed while stormy gale winds blew.
And to the frightened men on board
He said, “Take heart and trust the Lord!”

Then after fourteen days and nights
Of raging winds and scary sights,
The ship was wrecked against a reef.
But all were saved, with great relief!

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

Child: Have you ever been on a ship at sea, or even a boat on a big lake? What did you like the most—and the least—about that?

Child: The poem tells us that Paul prayed while stormy gale winds blew. Have you ever prayed during a storm? When?

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

Holy God, you are bigger than the ocean, and more powerful than the most frightening storm. Help us to remember that with you, we have nothing to fear. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.

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

May you trust God to guide you. Amen.

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, you work in mysterious ways. As we study our Bible story today, help us to see your hand in every good thing. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.

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

Acts 27:41-43
The front of the ship stuck firmly in the sand, and the rear was being smashed by the force of the waves. The soldiers decided to kill the prisoners to keep them from swimming away and escaping. But Captain Julius wanted to save Paul’s life, and he did not let the soldiers do what they had planned. (CEV)

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

Child: The captain showed mercy, and protected Paul from those who would have harmed him. If we see someone who is being bullied, what can we do to help?

Child: Why were the soldiers going to kill the prisoners? Do you think the soldiers were making bad decisions because they were panicking?

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

God of grace, you watch over us all the time. Thank you for your mercy and care. Please be with those who are in danger on the sea, or anywhere. 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 friend to someone who needs it. Amen.