Determination: Keep going because God knows the end of the story
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Link to May 24th Video Worship Service: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YyliVijzq0c&list=PLWzu5Hp1aUXkTxKZydgkF8zIYSMLa5ZYO
STEPS FOR EXPLORING THIS WEEKS LESSON
Step 1) Watch the Children’s Sermon Video together:
- Watch: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rMtNsweMbrU&list=PLWzu5Hp1aUXkTxKZydgkF8zIYSMLa5ZYO&index=5
- Discuss: Walking by faith, not by sight, is much easier said than done. To better understand what this idea means try closing your eyes and have a family member guide you through your home (SAFELY). Completing this activity requires a lot of faith in the person guiding you, not to hurt you. This is the same way that we must trust and have faith in Jesus to guide us.
STEP 2) Read scripture together:
- Read: Keep Holding On – Acts 6:2-7(NIV) – The Choosing of the Seven 2 So the Twelve gathered all the disciples together and said, “It would not be right for us to neglect the ministry of the word of God in order to wait on tables. 3 Brothers and sisters, choose seven men from among you who are known to be full of the Spirit and wisdom. We will turn this responsibility over to them 4 and will give our attention to prayer and the ministry of the word.” 5 This proposal pleased the whole group. They chose Stephen, a man full of faith and of the Holy Spirit; also Philip, Procorus, Nicanor, Timon, Parmenas, and Nicolas from Antioch, a convert to Judaism. 6 They presented these men to the apostles, who prayed and laid their hands on them. 7 So the word of God spread. The number of disciples in Jerusalem increased rapidly, and a large number of priests became obedient to the faith. Stephen Seized – Acts 6:8-15 8 Now Stephen, a man full of God’s grace and power, performed great wonders and signs among the people. 9 Opposition arose, however, from members of the Synagogue of the Freedmen (as it was called)—Jews of Cyrene and Alexandria as well as the provinces of Cilicia and Asia—who began to argue with Stephen. 10 But they could not stand up against the wisdom the Spirit gave him as he spoke. 11 Then they secretly persuaded some men to say, “We have heard Stephen speak blasphemous words against Moses and against God.” 12 So they stirred up the people and the elders and the teachers of the law. They seized Stephen and brought him before the Sanhedrin. 13 They produced false witnesses, who testified, “This fellow never stops speaking against this holy place and against the law. 14 For we have heard him say that this Jesus of Nazareth will destroy this place and change the customs Moses handed down to us.” 15 All who were sitting in the Sanhedrin looked intently at Stephen, and they saw that his face was like the face of an angel. Stephen’s Speech to the Sanhedrin – Acts 7:1-51-53 1Then the high priest asked Stephen, “Are these charges true?” And Stephen replied, 51“You stubborn people! You won’t obey! You won’t listen! You are just like your people of long ago! You always oppose the Holy Spirit! 52Was there ever a prophet your people didn’t try to hurt? They even killed those who told about the coming of the Blameless One. And now you have handed him over to his enemies. You have murdered him.” 53 You who have received the law that was given through angels but have not obeyed it.” The Stoning of Stephen – Acts 7: 54-60. 54 When the members of the Sanhedrin heard this, they were furious and gnashed their teeth at him. 55 But Stephen, full of the Holy Spirit, looked up to heaven and saw the glory of God, and Jesus standing at the right hand of God. 56 “Look,” he said, “I see heaven open and the Son of Man standing at the right hand of God.” 57 At this they covered their ears and, yelling at the top of their voices, they all rushed at him, 58 dragged him out of the city and began to stone him. Meanwhile, the witnesses laid their coats at the feet of a young man named Saul. 59 While they were stoning him, Stephen prayed, “Lord Jesus, receive my spirit.” 60 Then he fell on his knees and cried out, “Lord, do not hold this sin against them.” When he had said this, he fell asleep.
- Discuss: Jesus had told His followers to live out His love everywhere. And through God’s power, Stephen continued to share God’s love to his very last breath. This is a very sad end to the story of Stephen life, but here’s the thing: it wasn’t REALLY the end of the story for Stephen, because we can read the Bible and know that he went to be with Jesus. Stephen could be brave and keep going—even when his life was in danger—because he knew the end of his life wasn’t the end of the story. He knew that God was in control and that no matter what happened, he would be able to be in heaven with God forever
STEP 3) Read through the attached “1 Corinthians Verse” Handout and consider taking the time to thank God specifically for the blessings he’s given you.
STEP 4) Read through the attached “Parent Cue W4” Handout about Determination and consider completing the Drive-Time activity, asking your child about different challenging tasks and exploring some of their goals for the summer/upcoming months.