Tag Archives: Advent

Children’s Sermon Isaiah 11:1-10 Advent 2A December 8, 2013

Preparation: have a stump or a picture of a stump with a shoot coming out of it. Or a picture of a sidewalk with a shoot or sprig of something poking through.

20130822-223520.jpgGather the children. “We are in our second week of Advent. Does anyone remember what advent is?” (take brief answers) “Yes, Advent is when we are watching and waiting for the birth of Jesus. It’s the time we remember that God comes to us even in the darkness.”

FaithCrossShow them your stump or picture. “What is this here? Yes a stump. What is a stump?” (take answers) “Yep, a stump is what is left of a tree that is cut down, would you think a stump looks alive or dead?” (take answers) “A stump has been cut down and doesn’t look very alive. But look closer, do you see this shoot coming out of the stump? It’s like this little miracle that something new can grow out of something that was totally cut down.”

**you can also add a picture of a shoot coming up from a sidewalk and have them notice how the plant has to push through any crack in the thick, hard concrete to make it through and it still is able to be push it’s way out!***

20130822-223633.jpgWe heard from Isaiah today and he is talking to people who have lost a lot. They feel pretty cut down and lifeless, kind of like a stump. They might even be afraid of what is happening in their lives. But Isaiah is also telling them that there is hope. He says from the stump of Jesse a root will spring forth. This means that even though right then the people did not have a king who was from God and they were captive to other people that God was still with them and that God promised to continue to be with them and one day send a messiah that might not look like a king but that would be a light and gift for the world. That is part of our watching and waiting because we know that even when we feel scared or cut off or sad or lonely that Jesus is with us and that we can have hope in God’s promise. Just like that miracle of a shoot of a plant that comes out of a dead stump or pushes through the sidewalk, God’s love and peace are with us even when it’s hard to see.

20130822-223749.jpgJesus, we wait and watch for you. Help us to see hope and remember that you are with us always. Amen

 

20130822-223908.jpgMay you know the hope of Christ +

Advent 2013 + Household Devotions

AdventPicture

Just in time for the start of Advent!  A simple four week resource for gathering together to prepare your hearts and minds for Christmas. Please print, copy and handout (or share electronically!) to whomever you so desire.

This is a devotion that homes and families of all shapes and sizes will find to be worth their time in spending a few minutes together each week of this week Advent. These links will let you download whichever format works best for you.  Note that all the links will take you to our Mediafire site so you can view the files before you download them.

Booklet Style – prints as a landscape on 8.5 x 11 inch and folds into a booklet

A Page a Week – each page is one devotion, great for eReaders and tablets

Supplemental Images for make your own ornaments 

Here is an overview:

Faith+Connect-a ritual of lighting a candle, picking an ornament off your tree for your time together, and singing or listening to a Christmas song that fits the scripture for the day
Faith+Bible and Faith+ Chat–scripture and discussion prompts plus optional activities
Faith+Prayer–a prayer together
Faith+Blessing–a time to bless one another as the devotional time ends.

We encourage you to use this in your home and share with others. For all you wonderful youth directors, children’s ministers and pastors we encourage you to have this available for your congregations and visitors throughout Advent.

We love feedback so let us know if you used it and what you thought!
Link  supplemental pages

+Blessings to you all this Advent and Christmas,
Leta, Brigette, Gus

Faith + Home Connection December 2013 Isaiah 9: 2-7

20130822-223520.jpgGather the household around the Christmas tree. Turn on the lights or light candles. Open with prayer: God of light, we gather to hear the promises of your love to us. May we walk in your light and share your light and love with your creation. In your son, the light of the world, Jesus’ name, amen.

20130822-223633.jpgRead Isaiah 9: 2-7. As it is being read have paper, pencils, colored pencils, crayons and markers available. Draw the images that Isaiah offers here as it is being read. Maybe read it through more than once.

For children: (Note: some of the images are hard in this passage. Yet, many of our children are exposed to images of war and destruction. This can be a good time to talk openly about those things.) God wants us all to live in peace. What does the word peace mean to you? What does peace look like? What would you say to God in a prayer for peace?

For youth/adults: The promise of prosperity and peace is the focus of this passage. Yet, we know that those things are elusive in our world and it’s easy to think that tangible, financial prosperity is the true meaning of these promises of God. But prosperity in that sense of the word for people means poverty for others. What do you think God’s prosperity looks like in the world? When is “enough” stuff “enough” for us? How can we participate in God’s promise of everyone living in peace and stability? How can we encourage our neighbor to thrive? In this season of gift giving how can we celebrate the joy in giving gifts (this is not a bad thing!) to loved ones and not get caught up in the extravagance?

FaithCross_ServeALTA great way to give gifts and walk alongside a local or global neighbor is to contribute to a favorite charity in honor of that person. Make a fun card and attach a small ornament or piece of Christmas candy to the card. Or make some cookies or other treats for neighbors without family.

20130822-223749.jpgDear God, your light shines on us and lifts our burdens. You offer us promises of new life, peace and justice. May we rejoice in the gift given to us, your Son who reveals your love for all creation. Amen.

20130822-223908.jpg (Make the sign of the cross on one another) May you walk in the light of God. 

Weekly Devotions – December 16, 2012 – 3rd Sunday of Advent

Here is the Weekly devotion for the 3rd Sunday in Advent – December 16, 2012

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

Notice something different about on the back page? Dinner Devotions are now called “Faith on the Go!” It’s the same great household Bible study, but formatted to work with “Faith Five” from Faith Inkubators.

Children’s Sermon Dec. 9th 2012, Second Sunday of Advent Luke 1:68-79

Scripture: Luke 1:68-79

Prepare: This series of children’s sermons in Advent will utilize your Advent wreath in your worship space. Each week the as the candle is lit you will explain what the candle means and then give them a take home. Please see the attached sheet. The sheet has an ornament to print and the devotion to print on the back of it. The devotion will change each week. Have a copy made on card stock for each child and household.

Faith +Open: Gather the children to the Advent wreath. Say, Last week we talked about the Advent wreath, the color, the number of candles, and what Advent means. Who remembers why we light a candle each week? (Accept all answers) That’s right to remind us that Jesus is the light of the world and that Jesus will come again to us. Last week we lit the candle of Hope, this week we light the candle of Love. (Have an acolyte, or an older child light both candles.)

Faith +Connect: What is love to you? This week in our Bible stories we hear about how much God has loved us-all people from the very beginning of time. When you love someone, some place or something you want to be with that person, that place or that thing (like a doll or blanket) all the time don’t you? Well God also wants to be with us and everyone all the time. And God wants us-all of God’s people whom God loves-love to be together too. We hear in Luke 1 a blessing from Zechariah-John the Baptist’s father-to his son John, and the blessing is that John will tell the world about God’s love and that God will make all of us peaceful with one another.

How can we show our family, brothers, sister, neighbors God’s love and peace?

Each of you will get this candle ornament that you can take home and color blue (or purple if you do purple in Advent). You can hang it on your Christmas tree and each week you will get another one to add to the tree. So now you will have two. On the back is a Bible passage from Luke 1 to read, a prayer and a blessing. You can do this at dinner, in the car or before bed. Let’s practice it now!

Faith +Pray: God of Hope, you free us from whatever keeps us from you. Thank you for being with us always, amen.

Faith+Bless: Have everyone in the congregation turn to one another and say this blessing while making the sign of the cross on their forehead or hand: “Child of God you are free in God’s love.”

~BW

Children’s Sermon Dec. 2nd 2012, First Sunday of Advent Psalm 25

Scripture: Psalm 25

Prepare: This series of children’s sermons in Advent will utilize your Advent wreath in your worship space. Each week the as the candle is lit (ask an older child to help with lighting the wreath) you will explain what the candle means and then give them a take home devotion. Download it here! The idea is for the devotion to be copied on the back of the candle ornament to be used as a family devotion. Have a copy made on card stock for each child and/or household.

Faith+Open: Gather the children to the Advent wreath. Say, “Does anyone know what day today is in the Church?” Accept all answers. Today is the first Sunday of Advent. We are gathered here at this wreath with candles on it, we call this an Advent Wreath, and we are going to light just one candle today. Each week of Advent we will light another candle until all of the candles are lit. How many candles do you see here? That’s right four! There are four weeks of Advent; four weeks until we celebrate Jesus’ birthday, Christmas. We light a candle to remind us that Jesus is the light of the world!

Faith+Share: Did you know that each candle has a name? This week’s candle’s name is the Hope candle. What is hope? Accept all answers. Hope is expecting something wonderful to happen. We know that something wonderful happened when Jesus was born and also when Jesus died and rose again. This wonderful thing is that God loves us so much and we expect God to be with us always because God promised this to us! Nothing keeps us from God and we are free to love God and everyone around us!

Each of you will get this candle ornament that you can take home and color blue (or purple if you do purple in Advent). You can hang it on your Christmas tree and each week you will get another one to add to the tree. On the back is a Bible passage to read, a prayer and a blessing. You can do this at dinner, in the car or before bed. Let’s practice it now!

Faith+Pray:  God of Hope, you free us from whatever keeps us from you. Thank you for being with us always, amen.

Faith+Bless: Have everyone in the congregation turn to one another and say this blessing while making the sign of the cross on their forehead or hand: “You are free in God’s love.”

As you distribute the ornaments with the devotion on the back, have them sing “This Little Light of Mine” as they go back to their seats.

~BW

Faith + Home Connection December 2012

Faith + Open: Gather the household around your Advent wreath, Nativity display or Christmas tree. Light a candle on the Advent Wreath, light up your Christmas tree or just light a candle that is near by. Read Luke 1: 39-55. Have someone be the narrator, Elizabeth and Mary. The words of Mary in Luke 1: 46-55 are often referred to as the “Magnificat” or “Mary’s Song.” These words have been set to music by composers for hundreds of years. Listen to a child sing Marty Haugen’s version from Holden Evening Prayer on www.youtube.com.

Faith + Share: for children: Was there ever a time when you were so happy that you started singing a song? What song do you like to sing when you are happy? What is your favorite song from church or Sunday school? Make up a song about how much God loves you!

For youth/adults: Music is very much a part of our lives and can help us to express emotions, both joy and sorrow, that just mere word cannot. What kinds of music do like to listen to when you are happy? Feeling sorrow or a bit melancholy? Mary’s song was just not about happy emotion but about what God is doing in the world. It was an expression of justice, hope and solidarity. These words in the Magnificat are not only what God has done but what God will do in the future. When have you witnessed these actions of God in your own life or in the world? How are we to be a part of God’s actions of justice, hope and solidarity?

Faith + Blessing: After each meal time, bed time or other prayer close with the words “May our spirit rejoice in the God our Savior, amen.” You can also exchange the sign of the cross as you say these words in your household.

Faith +Serve: One of the ways that we can participate in God’s actions of justice, hope and solidarity in our community is to partner with other community organizations. Write and/or create Christmas cards to take to an assisted living facility. Maybe even do a little Christmas caroling while you are there dropping off the cards!

Faith + Close: God our Savior, you care so deeply for all of the world. Help our spirits to sing a song of hope, mercy and love to a world that is straining to hear it. We give you thanks for the great things you do for all of your people and pray for the hungry to be full, the lowly lifted up, for all to be looked upon with favor. May our spirit rejoice in the God our Savior, amen.

May be used with permission for nonprofit use or distribution. Intellectual property rites apply.

Advent 4B Luke 1:26-38 Children’s Sermon

Scripture: Luke 1:26-28

Preparation: a newspaper
Author note: Adapted from a children’s sermon by Pastor David Barber which was adapted from a Sundays and Seasons idea (Augsburg Fortress)

Faith+Open: Gather children to you. Good morning! Anyone know how many days until Christmas? Allow for answers (you might get some funny ones!) Yes we are waiting for Christmas and while we wait in Advent we share the good news of Jesus coming. How many of you read the paper? Show the newspaper you brought with you and take some responses.

Faith+Share: What kind of stories do newspapers tend to have? Allow for responses.There are some news stories that tell of good things but a lot of news we hear or read in our paper is bad news. We read about wars and children who are hungry or people who are hurting. (Use some current, appropriate, examples).  I’m wondering, are we people of bad news or good news? Allow for responses. We are people of good news! When the angel Gabriel came to Mary and to the Shepherds, he was bringing them good news about Jesus birth and we bring good news to others. What is the good news we have to share? Yes our good news is that Jesus is coming and what is Jesus bringing? Jesus is bring light and love and peace and joy and we share this with others–because we are messengers just like the angels were messengers so long ago when Jesus was born we are messengers now that tell others the Christmas story so they know that God is with us all the time. We can live and enjoy the good news for ourselves but we also share the good news with others so they can experience the love of God as well. 

Faith+Prayer: Loving Jesus, Thank you for this advent season. Thank you for the angels that bring good news. Help us to be messengers of Jesus light and love. Amen

Faith+Blessing:May the light of Christ be with you today and all your days. +