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 our Small Catechism today, may your Holy Spirit inspire us. Teach us what we need to know, and help us to develop a deeper trust in you. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.

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

He suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, died, and was buried. He descended into hell. On the third day he rose again. He ascended into heaven, and is seated at the right hand of the Father. (Luther’s Small Catechism)

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

Child: The words we just read are part of the Apostles’ Creed. Why do you think we say the Creed out loud in church so often? What does the Creed teach us?

Child: Thinking of all that Jesus endured (including pain, death, and seeing hell, itself), is there anything we go through in our lives that he cannot understand? How can this help us to feel less alone when we suffer?

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

Heavenly Father, your Son, Jesus, went through terrible things on our behalf. He is our truest and most faithful friend. As we learn more about what he did for us, help us to trust him more each day. In his holy name we pray. Amen.

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

May you trust the Lord with your heart, soul, and mind! 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, thank you for this day, and for the many ways you show kindness to us. Be with us now as we read and study together, and help us to learn all that you would have us know. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.

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

Mary walked to Jesus’ tomb
In the morning, full of gloom,
When she got there, he was gone
On that early Easter dawn.

Crying sadly, Mary stayed
By the place where Christ had laid
That was when the Lord appeared
He was living—it was clear!

Christ had risen from the dead;
That is what the angels said.
She told others, then, who came;
Running there, they saw the same!

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

Child: If you were with Mary and saw Jesus’ empty tomb, what would you think had happened?

Child: Mary told her friends that Jesus had risen from the dead, and every generation since then has shared that news! When did you first hear that message of Jesus’ resurrection? How can we keep this message at the center of our celebration of Easter?

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

Holy God, we cannot imagine how Mary must have felt when she discovered that Jesus was not in the tomb. Yet you knew all along that death would not have the last word! Help us to trust in your greater plan, for you are good and full of compassion. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.

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

May you believe the good news: Christ is risen, indeed!  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, today as we read our Bible story together, open our minds so that we may understand it better. Thank you for this time of prayer and study, and for your mercy in our lives. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.

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

John 20:14-15
As soon as Mary said this, she turned around and saw Jesus standing there. But she did not know who he was. Jesus asked her, “Why are you crying? Who are you looking for?” She thought he was the gardener and said, “Sir, if you have taken his body away, please tell me, so I can go and get him.” Then Jesus said to her, “Mary!” She turned and said to him, “Rabboni! [Teacher].” (CEV)

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

Child: Mary thought Jesus was the gardener when she first saw him. What do you imagine he looked like?

Child: How would you feel if you thought someone very special was gone forever, and then that person came back into your life again? What would you do?

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

God of grace, you often surprise us when we least expect it. But all of your surprises are for our good! May we always look for the ways you are at work in the world, and be thankful for them. 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 realize that God is with you! 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, we ask that you be with us today and guide us as we read our Bible story. Help us to see that no matter what happens in life, we can trust you to be with us and to never let us go. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.

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

John 20:11-13
Mary Magdalene stood crying outside the tomb. She was still weeping, when she stooped down and saw two angels inside. They were dressed in white and were sitting where Jesus' body had been. One was at the head and the other was at the foot. The angels asked Mary, “Why are you crying?” She answered, “They have taken away my Lord’s body! I don’t know where they have put him.”  (CEV)

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

Child: Why was Mary Magdalene crying? What do you think was going through her mind as she stood outside the tomb?

Child: What do you do when you are sad? How does your faith help you face upsetting things?

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

Heavenly Father, sometimes we go through hard times and are filled with sadness. You understand this, and you work to help us through it. Thank you for comforting us when we face sorrow, and for loving us enough to send your Son into the world. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.

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

May God comfort you when you are sad. 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 begin this new week, remind us that you are in control, and that we can trust you with everything. Be with us now as we learn more about Jesus and the amazing story of his resurrection. In his holy name we pray. Amen.

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

John 20:11-18
Mary Magdalene stood crying outside the tomb. She was still weeping, when she stooped down and saw two angels inside. They were dressed in white and were sitting where Jesus' body had been. One was at the head and the other was at the foot. The angels asked Mary, “Why are you crying?” She answered, “They have taken away my Lord’s body! I don’t know where they have put him.”

As soon as Mary said this, she turned around and saw Jesus standing there. But she did not know who he was. Jesus asked her, “Why are you crying? Who are you looking for?” She thought he was the gardener and said, “Sir, if you have taken his body away, please tell me, so I can go and get him.” Then Jesus said to her, “Mary!”

She turned and said to him, “Rabboni.” The Aramaic word “Rabboni” means “Teacher.” Jesus told her, “Don’t hold on to me! I have not yet gone to the Father. But tell my disciples that I am going to the one who is my Father and my God, as well as your Father and your God.” Mary Magdalene then went and told the disciples that she had seen the Lord. She also told them what he had said to her. (CEV)

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

Child: How would you feel if you were with Mary and saw angels in the tomb? What would you do?

Child: Mary was very upset and didn’t recognize Jesus. Have you ever been so overwhelmed that you could not think clearly? When?

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

Heavenly Father, when all hope seemed lost you raised Jesus from the dead. Even in that darkest hour, you were working for good — and you continue to do so today. Thank you for never giving up on your people! In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.

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

May you trust that God is working for good, even now! 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, on this beautiful Easter day, we praise and worship you! Thank you for each person here, and for this time that we can spend studying your Word together. Help us to learn all that you would have us know. In the name of Jesus Christ, we pray. Amen.

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

Psalm 94:17-22
Who will stand up for me against those cruel people? If you had not helped me, Lord, I would soon have gone to the land of silence. When I felt my feet slipping, you came with your love and kept me steady. And when I was burdened with worries, you comforted me and made me feel secure. You are opposed to dishonest lawmakers who gang up to murder innocent victims. You, Lord God, are my fortress, that mighty rock where I am safe. (CEV)

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

Child: What is a fortress? How is God like a fortress for us?

Child: In what ways has God protected you or kept you safe at different times in your life?

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

Lord God, on this day, over two thousand years ago, you raised Jesus from the dead! We are so thankful that you did not allow death and evil to have the last word. Help us to appreciate the true meaning of Easter as we celebrate it today. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.

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

May God protect you and keep you! 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, giver of all good things, we thank you for this day. In the midst of Easter preparations, help us to take time to be still. Be with us now as we study your Word, and teach us, so that we may grow deeper in faith. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.

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

Luke 22:22-25
Pilate spoke to them a third time, “But what crime has he done? I have not found him guilty of anything for which he should be put to death. I will have him beaten with a whip and set free.” The people kept on shouting as loud as they could for Jesus to be put to death. Finally, Pilate gave in. He freed the man who was in jail for rioting and murder, because he was the one the crowd wanted to be set free. Then Pilate handed Jesus over for them to do what they wanted with him. (CEV)

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

Child: Pilate was pressured by the crowd, and made a bad decision. Have you ever made a bad decision and realized your mistake later? What happened?

Child: How can our faith help us be strong, even when we are under pressure? How can we also help each other do what is right.

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

Dear Lord, despite all that you faced during your time on earth, you still were willing to give your life for us. What an amazing and generous thing to do! Thank you for loving us, even when we least deserved it. In your holy name we pray. Amen.

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

May God make you strong on the inside! Amen.