Children’s Sermon/Worship Station – 6th Sunday After Pentecost, Mark 6:1-13 – July 5, 2015

Prepare: You don’t need to prepare anything specific, but be ready to lead the children’s sermon from a new place, or at a different time, or  . . .

The idea is to do something different so people cannot just be on “autopilot” during the children’s sermon and worship station.

20130822-223520.jpg Invite the children to join you in you new location or time, etc. Ask them how they feel about it. Is it good to be doing something new? Does it make them feel uncomfortable?

20130822-223633.jpg Jesus is changing things around in the story today, too. He goes into his hometown and tries to change how they understand the Bible. He tries to show the people who have known him his whole life a new way to understand the healing power of God. He tries to show them something new and they just don’t like it!

This happens to us, too. Maybe we show up at work or at school and our schedule is not what we thought it was going to be. Or maybe you get served your favorite food but it has a spice or flavor that you are not used to and you don’t like it. It can be really hard to try something different, especially when we like it just fine the old way, and sometimes even more if the NEW way is somehow better!

We like things the way they are often because it is comfortable and safe. We don’t like to take risks and change things. Jesus calls on us to look at the world a different way. Jesus wants us to see the good news and share God’s hope and healing, even when it is difficult to do, and even when people might reject the news we have.  Jesus has advice for that, too! He tells his disciples to spread the good news and offer healing wherever the go. If the people there don’t want to hear what they have to say, then they should just shake it off and move on.

FaithCross_Worship A little church camp mixer! Encourage people (demand?) to get up and move around the sanctuary and find someone that they don’t know very well. Sit down with them and find out something new about them.

Then have those groups of two people join into a group of four people and introduce their new friends to each other.

The last piece is to create a small prayer group from those four people. Invite them to share a prayer request with the group of four and ask them to commit to praying for each other throughout the week.

Ideally, you have these groups of four check in the next week!

20130822-223908.jpg God goes with you!

20130822-223749.jpg God of healing and hope, give us the wisdom to welcome your presence. Give us the patience to listen to your good news. Give us glad and grateful heats for your abundance in our lives. Amen.

 

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Weekly Devotion Page for July 5, 2015

33 July 05 - Sixth Sunday after Pentecost.pubHere is the devotion page for the 6th Sunday after Pentecost, July 5, 2015.

Just click on the picture to download the PDF file!

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Children’s Sermon Mark 5:21-43 5th Sunday after Pentecost Year B June 28,2015

Preparation: There are two options here.
A) fill a bag with different things to touch–a soft stuffed animal, baggie of dirt, something prickly (but not too sharp!), silly putty or something kind of slimy or sticky. You can either keep these in the bag and have them reach in and guess or you can take them out one by one to so they can see as well.
B) prepare several small bags with the same items in them, just one per bag so that kids can reach in and try to guess  what they feel.

20130822-223520.jpgGather the children with you. Show them the bag you have brought and prepared. “I have brought some things with me today that I want to explore what you think about how they feel.” Proceed to either have one or two children reach into the bag without peeking or bring the items out one by one and have them feel them and talk about what they feel like.

20130822-223633.jpg“I brought these items today because as I heard the gospel read I noticed that the word touch was used quite a lot. Do you remember what the story said about touch?” See what they recall, help them remember the places in the story that Jesus was touched or touched someone. “Touch is one of our five senses, and it’s an important one. Touch helps us know when something is too hot or too cold right? Touch also tells us what something is and helps us know our surroundings. In the Bible today we hear about Jesus and his healing touch–that he is able to heal the woman and the daughter with his touch and his words. This tells me that not only does Jesus care for us in words and by listening, but Jesus also cares for us in all the ways that we feel, either with our hands or with our hearts. You know, when I get a hug from one of my kids or a friend, that is a touch that can warm my heart and make me feel loved. Or when I get to curl up in my bed with favorite pillow that is a sense of touch that makes me feel warm and safe. And when we hold hands to pray or bless one another by putting our hands on one another’s head or shoulder that is touch that makes me feel connected to you and to God. So even though my touch may not make  a disease go away or heal all their hurts, our touch of prayer and blessing and love can bring the presence of God and hope to another person.”

20130822-224425.jpgLet’s pray together this way–let’s hold hands but first look at your thumbs. Let’s make both our thumbs go to the left and then hold hands with the people next to us. When we do this we have one hand supporting one person next to us and another hand being supported, or held up by the other person. (show them this with the people next to you) Lets pray–Loving Jesus, you give us hands to feel and hearts to love. Help us to use kind touch to bring your healing to others. Amen

20130822-223908.jpg+May you know the healing touch of God today+

 

FaithCross_WorshipFor a worship station you can either have the same items from your bag set up at the station and have people feel them and then write something that makes them feel and prayer on paper below each item.
OR
Go to this link from the Still Waters website and scroll down to the station on making hot chocolate as a fun way to have people make a gift for someone they love or who needs a healing prayer.

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Weekly Household Devotion – June 28, 3015

32 June 28 - Fifth Sunday after Pentecost.pubHere is the devotion page for the 5th Sunday after Pentecost, June 28, 2015.

Just click on the picture to download the PDF file!

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Let’s Go! Jesus is with us always! Children’s sermon on Mark 4: 35-41

20130822-223520.jpg Gather the children in a different spot than you normally do maybe at the font, or just on a different side of the worship space. Then ask them if they have ever had to go to a new school or daycare place. Or maybe they joined a new soccer team, dance team, swim team, etc. What was that like? Was it a bit scary to go somewhere new? Did you have to learn new things and new people? Yes! But probably your parents stayed with you for a little while anyway to get you settled, or maybe your brother or sister was with you or a friend. When we go new places we like to someone we know with us don’t we!
20130822-223633.jpg In our story from Mark this morning, Jesus invites his disciples to go somewhere new. Jesus simply says to the disciples, “Let’s go to the other side!” The “other side” of the sea of Galilee was a place where the disciples had never been before but they knew that there would be different people, different food and stuff they couldn’t even imagine! But Jesus said “Let’s Go!” and they got in the boat and went. Now when they were on their way a storm came up and they woke Jesus up for help. Jesus told the storm and the disciples “Peace! Be Still!” and the storm stopped! The disciples were amazed! But they learned that even when stuff is hard Jesus is there and will be with us, when we are afraid, somewhere new, and with new people. It’s kind of weird having children’s sermon here isn’t it? But you know what? Jesus is here!!!
You know what? God gives us all kinds of people in our lives to be with us and to remind us of God’s love. Today, we are celebrating all of the men in our community who care for us. Doesn’t matter if they are actually your dad, grandpa, or uncle, God calls all men to be caring adults for you and in this community! How can we tell other people about how Jesus is with them when they are scared, worried or alone?
(Have a carnation or a daisy for the children to give to each man (18 and up) in the congregation this morning.)
FaithCross_WorshipCreate on a large piece of paper a simple boat. Have post-it notes available. Invite people to write or draw on the post-it notes prayers for where they are experiencing change in their lives. Offer these prayers during your community prayers during worship. Invite people to take a post-it note that is not their own home to pray for someone else during the week.
Have cards and pens available to write cards with words of encouragement for people to take to give to those they encounter this week in need of knowing that God is with them always. You can use the blessing below as a prompt.
We are all in the boat with Jesus together!

20130822-223749.jpg Dear Jesus, you tell us to get in the boat and follow you. We are sometimes afraid of new places, people and situations but you promise to always be with us with a word of peace. In the name of the one who stilled the storm, Jesus Christ, amen.
20130822-223908.jpg+Do not be afraid, Jesus gives you peace+

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Weekly Devotion Page for June 21, 2015

31 June 21 - Fourth Sunday after Pentecost.pubHere is the devotion page for the 4th Sunday after Pentecost, June 21, 2015.

Just click on the picture to download the PDF file!

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Children’s Sermon/Worship Station – June 14, 2015, Mark 4:26-34; 3rd Sunday after Pentecost

Prepare: You will need a large piece of banner paper (probably white) and a bunch of crayons of markers.

20130822-223520.jpg Ask the children, “Have you every planted anything? Flowers, or vegetables, or a tree? What did you do to help if grow?” Wait for a few answers.

20130822-223633.jpg I think one of the amazing things about planting seeds is that all of the information that the seed needs to become a plant is inside that little seed! If you plant a pumpkin seed in a good place and give it water it grows more pumpkins with a whole bunch more seeds, it’s amazing!

In the story from Mark today, Jesus is working hard to explain what God’s Kingdom is like, and he chooses seeds and plants to help him explain. Jesus knows how amazing seeds are. It almost sounds like Jesus is just as fascinated as we are! He talks about how just a few seeds can grow into a bounty of food, or how a tiny little seed can become a huge tree (Jesus uses a mustard seed, but maybe we could think of an apple seed growing into a big apple tree!)

Jesus seems to be saying that God’s Kingdom holds more wonders than we can imagine, and more bounty than we can dream of. If a tiny little apple seed can grow into a big tree that can produce maybe hundreds of apples every year, imagine what the kingdom of God could be like!

FaithCross_Worship For the worship station, invite people to gather around the banner paper and create a prayer garden. Invite them to draw a flower or tree, or to write a short prayer on the paper. Find a place around your church where you can keep the banner up for a while with a sign that encourages people to add flowers, trees or prayers throughout the summer season. If you really keep it up, you could make the “harvest of prayer” part of you Sunday School kick off in the fall!

20130822-223908.jpg My God’s kingdom grow in you!

20130822-223749.jpg Bountiful God, We thank you for the wonders of seeds and plants. Help us to grow in faith just as the plants around us grown through the warm growing seasons. Amen.

 

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Weekly Devotion Page for June 14, 2015

30 June 14 - Third Sunday after Pentecost.pubHere is the devotion page for the 3rd Sunday after Pentecost, June 14, 2015.

Just click on the picture to download the PDF file!

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Children’s Sermon Mark 3:20-35 Pentecost 2B

Preparation: a big chart with two columns for Yes and No

20130822-223520.jpgGather the children with you up front. Show them your chart and say, “So this week I was thinking about things that Jesus taught and how in our life we have lots of choices to make-lots of things and ideas and experiences and people that we can say yes or no to. Now I know that sometimes you have choices between other things too–like maybe mom or dad or grandparents ask if you want broccoli or green beans for dinner or how about this– raise your hand if you would like chocolate ice cream better and raise your foot if you would like ice cream better. So yes sometimes choices are for things but you know you are saying yes to chocolate or vanilla and not to the other even when you have these choices.

So I made this chart thinking about the things, people, ideas, ways to live that we can say yes or no to and I thought I would ask you what you thought. So let’s think deeply together, what are some things or ideas or people that we say yes or no to? I’ll go first. Yes things are things that connect us to love, to God, to other people, to helping the world. I needed help mowing my yard the other day and the neighbor boy came over to help–I said yes to accepting help. Do you have other ideas?

Knowing what we say yes to helps us know what we say no to. Like because I accepted help, I was able to say no to having a lot of pride and trying to do everything all alone. Other ideas?

20130822-223633.jpgJesus today in the Gospel and throughout scripture is saying yes to people, to being in a community, to worshipping God. He is teaching to say no to separation from God, to evil, to being a part of things that do not show love. He tells us that we are all his brothers and sisters when we are saying yes to God. This reminds me of what happens in a baptism. Together we say we renounce, which is a big word for saying No. And we say no to the devil, empty promises, and anything that goes against God. (add these to the chart if they are not there or circle them) And in baptism we say Yes to remembering we are God’s children, helping other people and creation, yes to loving God and loving one another. Jesus promises to be with us everyday and all the ways we try to do this and to love us even we say yes to things that need a no.

FaithCross_PrayALTLet us pray, Jesus-help us  to say yes to living as your children. Yes to loving others. Yes to your promises. Help us to say no to all the things that separate us from you. Amen+

FaithCross_BlessALT+May you walk in the yes with Jesus. +

 

FaithCross_WorshipHave a chart at your worship station for people to add their yes and no to. You could also have smaller pieces of paper with the same columns for people to take home. On this table also have a bowl of water with a  remembrance of baptism or the blessing above. You can also put this station near the baptismal font if your space allows.

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Weekly Household Devotions for June 7, 2015

29 June 7 - Second Sunday after Pentecost.pubHere is the devotion page for the 2nd Sunday after Pentecost, June 7, 2015.

Just click on the picture to download the PDF file!

Did you miss a week? Go to the Weekly Devotion page to download past weeks!

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