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 Holy Week begins, we ask you to be with us. Help us to understand all that Jesus did for us, even to giving his very life. Thank you for your love, and for never giving up on us. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.

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

Luke 22:13-25
Pilate called together the chief priests, the leaders, and the people. He told them, “You brought Jesus to me and said he was a troublemaker. But I have questioned him here in front of you, and I have not found him guilty of anything that you say he has done. Herod didn’t find him guilty either and sent him back. This man doesn’t deserve to be put to death! I will just have him beaten with a whip and set free.”

But the whole crowd shouted, “Kill Jesus! Give us Barabbas!” Now Barabbas was in jail because he had started a riot in the city and had murdered someone. Pilate wanted to set Jesus free, so he spoke again to the crowds. But they kept shouting, “Nail him to a cross! Nail him to a cross!”

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: What is a “troublemaker?” Does that word describe Jesus? Why or why not?

Child: Have you or someone you love ever been labeled unfairly? How can it help to know that the same thing happened to Jesus?

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

Heavenly Father, you sent your Son to save us from our sin. May we never take this for granted, and may we turn to him when we face our own trials and griefs. For no one understands suffering more than he does. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.

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

May you remember that God is with you always! 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, sometimes we have difficult decisions to make. But we know that you are always with us, helping and guiding us. Thank you for all that you do 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.

Matthew 2:7-8
Herod secretly called in the wise men and asked them when they had first seen the star. He told them, “Go to Bethlehem and search carefully for the child. As soon as you find him, let me know. I want to go and worship him too.” (CEV)

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

Child: King Herod was jealous; he was not happy to hear that there was a new king born. Do you think he really wanted to worship baby Jesus, or was he lying?

Child: Why do you think Herod could not figure out where baby Jesus was located? Do you think God had something to do with this? Why or why not?

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

Heavenly Father, we need good rulers all over our world. Raise up leaders who want to serve you, and who will act justly, no matter where they live. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.

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

May you be brave in doing right! 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 about those who came before us so long ago. Thank you for their courageous examples of faith. We ask this through Jesus Christ, our Lord. Amen.

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

Matthew 2:7-12
Herod secretly called in the wise men and asked them when they had first seen the star. He told them, “Go to Bethlehem and search carefully for the child. As soon as you find him, let me know. I want to go and worship him too.”

The wise men listened to what the king said and then left. And the star they had seen in the east went on ahead of them until it stopped over the place where the child was.  They were thrilled and excited to see the star.

When the men went into the house and saw the child with Mary, his mother, they knelt down and worshiped him. They took out their gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh and gave them to him. Later they were warned in a dream not to return to Herod, and they went back home by another road. (CEV)

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

Child: The wise men were people who studied the stars. What do you know about stars? Is there anything you can tell me?

Child: Why do you think the wise men left their homes? What had they seen? What do you think they expected to find at the end of their journey?

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

Heavenly Father, you guide us every day, just as you did for the wise men. Lead us in the year ahead, and be with those who feel lost and alone at this time of year. Help them realize that you love them. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.

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

May you follow where God leads you! 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.

In this center section of Holy Families website, you will find our daily Scripture and Prayer resource for families. The current day will always be at the top (see below). If you are new and would like a little help getting started with "Holy Family Time" -- download this free PDF: Holy Family Time "How To" Guide for more information.

We are excited to be approaching the official release of the Holy Families initiative! The printed and downloadable studies are finished, and the website and video series are being given some finishing touches.

Congregations of the NALC will be receiving in the mail this month a free sample edition of the Bible Study "In the Luther Household" and the accompanying Leader's Guide, courtesy of the NALC and the Thrivent Foundation.

The daily devotional resource "Holy Family Time" will begin being posted on this website the week after Easter. Come on back!

When the Holy Families website officially comes online the week after Easter 2017, this is the spot on the site -- front and center -- where you will find the daily Scripture and Prayer resource for use in the home by families, called "Holy Family Time." The resource can be accessed on computer, tablet, or phone.

Until then, as the Holy Families website continues to be developed, feel free to make use of the articles and links that are available below or accessed through the menus above. Please check back for more to come!