Week 4: August 25
During the month of August, Pastor Emily will be taking a break from “Children’s Tuesday Time with Pastor Emily.” During this break, we encourage you and your household to gather once a week for a short household faith devotion. A new devotion will be sent out each Tuesday.
This week’s devotion:
(Materials Needed: Bible, candle, lighter, song lyrics for one of the following songs: “This Little Light of Mine,” “Sanctuary: Lord Prepare Me,” or other favorite hymn)
Gathering and Opening Candle Ritual:
Gather with your household in a quiet place. As you light your candle together, remind one another that God is with us everywhere, and therefore God is in this place with you now. Say opening candle ritual together: God’s holy light surrounds us. Only good can come in. Only good can go out. Amen.
Highlights and Lows:
Share Highlights and Lows with one another. (Something that is a highlight from this week. Something that is a low point from your week.)
Share with each other one way you have seen or encountered God this week.
Read and Discuss God’s Word:
Read: Sunday’s Gospel together: Matthew 16:13-20. Retell the story in your own words.
– What is something that sticks out to you in this story and why? What does this story make you wonder about? What does this story say about who Jesus is? What does this mean for us today?
– The titles “Messiah” which means “Savior” and “Son of God” were given to worldly leaders, such as kings and emperors. Many of those leaders treated a lot of people badly – especially people who were poor, sick, diversely abled, women, and others who were vulnerable. But in our bible story, Jesus is given the titles: “Messiah” and “Son of the living God.” This means that Jesus is the one who is to be our king or leader. He is the one who rules over the heavens and all the earth. How is Jesus’ way of ruling over the heavens and all the earth different from the way the kings and emperors ruled in Jesus’ time? What does this mean for us today?
– Peter often has difficulty understanding who Jesus is or what it means for Jesus to be the Messiah, the Son of the Living God. Peter often messes up and makes mistakes. But here in our Gospel reading, he seems to understand who Jesus is. Do you relate to Peter at all? How so?
-Share a time you have struggled to understand who Jesus is or where Jesus is present in your life. Share a time when you felt you understood who Jesus is or where you felt Jesus’ presence in your life.
-Share with each other: Who do you say Jesus is? (Who is Jesus?)
Respond to God’s Word:
Draw a picture or write a list, paragraph, song, or poem describing: Who is Jesus? (You might include: words or names that have been given to him, who Jesus is for you, who he is for the world, how you experience Jesus in your life, etc.)
Pray together. (You might choose to lift up something you talked about in your discussion time. Or you might pray over your highlights and lows, thanking God for ways you’ve encountered God’s love this week, lifting up people who need extra prayers right now, asking God to help you see the ways God is present in your daily life, asking God to help you share God’s love with others this week.)
Sing one of the following together: “This Little Light of Mine,” “Sanctuary,” or one of your favorite hymns.
Sending and Closing Candle Ritual:
Say closing candle ritual together: God’s holy light surrounds us. Only good can come in. Only good can go out. We take this light with us wherever we go. Amen.