Week 8: Community and World

A biblical discipleship journey equipping parents to engage their children in biblical truth.
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Younger Preschool (0-2)

God helps people. 

View Younger Preschool Curriculum

Theme Verse:
“…but you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be My witnesses both in Jerusalem and in all Judea, and Samaria, and as far as the remotest part of the earth” (Acts 1:8).

Objective:
God helps people.

Teach:
When your child’s toys are laying out or their clothes are on the floor, look for an opportunity to include your child in clean-up time. When something is messy around the house, ask them to help you tidy up. Use this to demonstrate how family members help each other. This is one way your child(ren) can begin understating the concept of “help.”

Begin modeling the actions of cleaning up for your child(ren). Narrate each step of cleaning and guide him or her to do the same. Don’t worry if they are not quite ready yet—the important thing is to model this for them.

Finish by making the connection to how God helps. God works in many ways, but His help is usually intangible. This can be an abstract concept for children. One of the best visual concepts is modeling prayer asking for God’s help or showing an event in the Bible (picture book version) where God helped (parting the Red Sea, the fiery furnace, Jesus’ miracles).

Discussion Question(s):
Model the question and answer

Ask: “Who helps us?”
Answer: “God helps us!”

Play:
Using toys, act out scenarios of characters helping one another with a task, chore, or situation. As an alternative, act out scenarios involving helping such as setting a table, taking out the trash, or washing the dishes (if you have toy kitchen items, even better).

Sing:
“Tell the World”

Live it Out:
Throughout the week, try out the previously mentioned helping situations and use them as an opportunity to remind your child(ren) how God helps us.

Closing Prayer:
God, thank You for letting us learn to help each other. God, thank You for helping us the most and for loving and protecting us. Amen.

Middle Preschool (3-4)

God wants family members to love and help one another.

VIEW Middle PRESCHOOL CURRICULUM

Theme Verse:
“God will help you be his witnesses.” (Acts 1:8).

Objective:
God wants family members to love and help one another.

Teach:
Have you ever been in trouble and punished when you did not do anything wrong? (Allow the children to tell what happened. Try not to correct them, just listen.) Today, we learn in Acts 12:5–19 about one of Jesus’s special friends—Peter. When the king found out that Peter was preaching the Gospel, he was arrested and scheduled to be put to death. The king treated Peter like he was a bad man. They put Peter in prison with two chains and 16 guards, and four of the guards watched him at all times.

One night, while Peter was sleeping, the angel of the Lord came to Peter. A bright light shown in his cell. The angel told him to get up, put on his sandals and coat, and follow him. When Peter stood up, the chains fell off. They passed two guards. Next was an iron gate. How do you think the gate might sound when they opened it? (Allow the children to make a squeaking noise.) Do you think someone would hear and find out that Peter was escaping? I would think so too!

After they were outside, the angel disappeared. Peter thought this was a dream, but it was really happening. When he realized it was not a dream, he went to the house where the church was meeting. He knocked on the door. (Make a knocking sound.) Rhoda, the servant girl, went to the door. She became very excited because she recognized Peter’s voice. Rhoda told the people who were praying that Peter was at the door. They did not believe her. Peter kept knocking at the door. When they went to the door, there was Peter. Everyone was so excited. Peter had to motion for the people to be quiet. He then told them how God had helped him.

Our verse this week is, “God will help you be His witnesses.” Acts 1:8. Repeat the verse several times. Use or pretend to use a magnifying glass. Look up and say the verse. Look down and say the verse. Look to the left and say the verse. Look to the right and say the verse.

Discussion Question(s):

  1. Why did we use a magnifying glass to say our verse? (Because a witness might look at things better with one. It makes things look bigger and clearer.)
  2. Why was Peter in prison? (For telling people about Jesus.)
  3. How did Peter get out of jail? (The angel of the Lord woke him up and led him outside.)
  4. What was the church doing during this time? (Praying)
  5. Why? (They were doing this to ask God to help Peter.)
  6. There will be times when we need help. What should we do? (Trust God and pray.)
  7. What if it is a friend of yours who needs help? (Pray for them and do what you can.)

Play:
Make a Prayer Chain

Materials:

  • Strips of paper
  • Pen or marker
  • Tape or stapler

Directions:

  1. Give each person several strips.
  2. Have them write or ask an adult to write something or someone’s name on the strip.
  3. Have the person tell why they wrote that person or thing on their strip. How should we pray for them?
  4. Connect the strips using the tape or stapler.
  5. Hang the Prayer Chain where you will see it each day.
  6. Each day, remove a strip and pray for that request.
  7. Remind the family that prayer is one way we can help others.

Sing:
“Tell the World”

Live it Out:
We talked about Peter and the church. We learned the church helped Peter by praying for him when he was in jail. We are learning that we can help others by praying for them.

Closing Prayer:
Jesus, thank You that we can come to You in prayer and that You hear and answer us. Please help us to be Your witnesses even when it is hard. Help us to pray for those who tell others about You. In your name we pray, amen.

Older Preschool (5)

God helps people to do His work.

VIEW Older PRESCHOOL CURRICULUM
Theme Verse:
“God will help you be his witnesses.” (Acts 1:8).

Objective:
God helps people to do His work.

Teach:
Have you ever been in trouble and punished when you did not do anything wrong? (Allow the children to tell what happened. Try not to correct them, just listen.) Today, we learn in Acts 12:5–19 about one of Jesus’s special friends—Peter. When the king found out that Peter was preaching the Gospel, he was arrested and scheduled to be put to death. The king treated Peter like he was a bad man. They put Peter in prison with two chains and 16 guards, and four of the guards watched him at all times.

One night, while Peter was sleeping, the angel of the Lord came to Peter. A bright light shown in his cell. The angel told him to get up, put on his sandals and coat, and follow him. When Peter stood up, the chains fell off. They passed two guards. Next was an iron gate. How do you think the gate might sound when they opened it? (Allow the children to make a squeaking noise.) Do you think someone would hear and find out that Peter was escaping? I would think so too!

After they were outside, the angel disappeared. Peter thought this was a dream, but it was really happening. When he realized it was not a dream, he went to the house where the church was meeting. He knocked on the door. (Make a knocking sound.) Rhoda, the servant girl, went to the door. She became very excited because she recognized Peter’s voice. Rhoda told the people who were praying that Peter was at the door. They did not believe her. Peter kept knocking at the door. When they went to the door, there was Peter. Everyone was so excited. Peter had to motion for the people to be quiet. He then told them how God had helped him.

Our verse this week is, “God will help you be His witnesses.” Acts 1:8. Repeat the verse several times. Use or pretend to use a magnifying glass. Look up and say the verse. Look down and say the verse. Look to the left and say the verse. Look to the right and say the verse.

Discussion Question(s):

  1. Why did we use a magnifying glass to say our verse? (Because a witness might look at things better with one. It makes things look bigger and clearer.)
  2. Why was Peter in prison? (For telling people about Jesus.)
  3. How did Peter get out of jail? (The angel of the Lord woke him up and led him outside.)
  4. What was the church doing during this time? (Praying)
  5. Why? (They were doing this to ask God to help Peter.)
  6. There will be times when we need help. What should we do? (Trust God and pray.)
  7. What if it is a friend of yours who needs help? (Pray for them and do what you can.)

Play:
Make a Prayer Chain

Materials:

  • Strips of paper
  • Pen or marker
  • Tape or stapler

Directions:

  1. Give each person several strips.
  2. Have them write or ask an adult to write something or someone’s name on the strip.
  3. Have the person tell why they wrote that person or thing on their strip. How should we pray for them?
  4. Connect the strips using the tape or stapler.
  5. Hang the Prayer Chain where you will see it each day.
  6. Each day, remove a strip and pray for that request.
  7. Remind the family that prayer is one way we can help others.

Sing:
“Tell the World”

Live it Out:
We talked about Peter and the church. We learned the church helped Peter by praying for him when he was in jail. We are learning that we can help others by praying for them.

Closing Prayer:
Jesus, thank You that we can come to You in prayer and that You hear and answer us. Please help us to be Your witnesses even when it is hard. Help us to pray for those who tell others about You. In your name we pray, amen.

1st+2nd Grade

God helps people to do His work in their communities and world.

VIEW 1st+2nd Grade CURRICULUM
Theme Verse:
“…but you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be My witnesses both in Jerusalem and in all Judea, and Samaria, and as far as the remotest part of the earth” (Acts 1:8).

Objective:
God helps people to do His work in their communities and world.

Teach:
Who is your favorite superhero? Superheroes are fun to watch on TV and read about in books. Some have the power of super strength, and others have the power of super speed. Did you know God has given all Christians power that is greater than any superpower? Acts 1:8 tells us we will receive power, and it comes from the Holy Spirit. Once we are Christians, the Holy Spirit helps us do God’s work in our community and the world around us.

In Acts 1:8, Jesus speaks to His disciples. The first place He mentions is Jerusalem, which is where they were living. He wants them to do God’s work in the communities in which they live. Then, He wants them to go to other parts of the world. Where do we live right now? Do you think Jesus wants us to do God’s work right where we live? There are so many opportunities for us to work and serve our community.

Beyond our communities, God wants us to serve people throughout the rest of our state, country, and world. As kids, it might be hard to travel to other countries and serve other people. However, you can still learn about Christians serving in other countries, known as missionaries, and how we can help them from our own community

Discussion Question(s):

  1. What kind of power has God given us? (The Holy Spirit, to help us do His work)
  2. Where does God want us to serve others? (In our community and around the world)

Play:
Get a Bible and help your kids find the following verses. Have them read the verse and tell you ways that verse tells us to serve people: Isaiah 58:10, Mark 12:31, Luke 3:10–11, 1 Peter 4:10.

Sing:
“Tell the World”

Live it Out:
For your family to do God’s work or engage in the Missionary Task in your community, you don’t have to move homes, help plant a new church, move to a different country, or sell everything you own. Do you take opportunities to serve others as a family? How cool would it be to take time to participate in a local community service project as a family? Not only would this show obedience to God, but it would draw your family closer together.

Closing Prayer:
Father, thank You for giving us Your power to work and serve our community. Give us opportunities to serve our neighbors and help us be obedient when those opportunities are in front of us. We are thankful we can serve You and be obedient by serving others. Amen.

3rd Grade

God works through people to do work in their communities and world.

VIEW 3rd GRADE CURRICULUM

Theme Verse:
“…but you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be My witnesses both in Jerusalem and in all Judea, and Samaria, and as far as the remotest part of the earth” (Acts 1:8).

Objective:

God works through people to do work in their communities and world.

Teach:
Read the biblical truth again out loud: “God works through people to do work in their communities and world.” God’s work in our community sounds like a huge job. Amazingly, God is going to use us, His people, to work in our communities and beyond. Those jobs might be simple—helping others in need or giving to others or maybe sharing about Jesus. Do you think you are ready for that?

Think about a time when you couldn’t do something that you know how to do now. Do you remember when you didn’t know how to tie your shoes? Or maybe you can remember what it was like to not know how to ride a bike. What are some words to describe what it felt like to not be able to do something (some ideas: frustration when I try on my own, impatience while I wait for help with shoelaces)? When you feel like you cannot do something, are those good feelings or bad feelings? It’s not fun or comfortable not knowing how to do something.

While you learned how to tie your shoes or ride your bike, someone helped and taught you. As our Father in Heaven, God will also send us help and guidance. Look at our verse again, “…you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come on you and you will be my witness…” The Holy Spirit is a Helper sent from God to believers. It helps us tell others about Jesus and God’s plan for the world.

God plans to use His people to tell the world about Jesus. In our verse, He declares we will be His witnesses telling the world about the good news, but just like when you struggled with tying your shoes or riding your bike and needed help, God is ready with His help. God’s plan is to use people for His work on Earth, but He also helps them accomplish His plan.

Discussion Question(s):

  1. Who is in our community? (Ideas: neighborhood, school, friends, family)
  2. How might God work through us in our community? (Ideas: helping a neighbor clean their yard, giving food to a needy person, sharing about Jesus)
  3. How might God help you do this work? (Ideas: helping you notice a need, giving you ideas about how to help others, giving you the courage to share about what Jesus is doing in your life)

Play:
Put your hand on a table with your middle finger bent underneath your palm and all the other fingers extended. Raise your pinky finger. Raise index finger. Those are jobs you can do. Now raise your ring finger. It’s impossible without help. Use your other hand to help you raise your ring finger. In the same way, God will help us to work for Him in our community and the world.

Sing:
“Tell the World”

Live it Out:
This week, ask God to show you how you can impact your community for Him. Look for needs in your neighborhood and listen for needs when you talk to friends and family.

Closing Prayer:
God, thank You for Your plan for the world. Thank You for using us to help others. Help us this week to recognize where You want us to help others and share about You. Amen.

4th+5th Grade

God allows people to join Him in His work throughout the world.

VIEW 4th+5th GRADE CURRICULUM

Theme Verse:
“…but you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be My witnesses both in Jerusalem and in all Judea, and Samaria, and as far as the remotest part of the earth” (Acts 1:8).

Objective:
God allows people to join Him in His work throughout the world.

Teach:
It may be hard for you to believe that information used to travel very slowly from one source to another. Because of the internet, we are now able to send and receive information all over the world within seconds. God is doing amazing work all over the world through many different organizations, ministries, and churches, and we can easily find information about this work.

We can access specific prayer requests from different ministries and commit to pray for them. We can discover the needs they have and determine how we can support their efforts. We can be sensitive to the voice of the Lord if He is calling us to serve in one of these ministries on either a short-term or long-term basis. God wants us to minister to those around us every day, but He also calls us to use our resources and gifts to serve others and share the love of Jesus all over the world. All of us can pray. Many of us can give. Some of us can go.

Discussion Question(s):
Let this be a time of family discussion.

  • Do you have conversations about God or church with any of your friends?
  • Do you feel that there are people around you that do not go to church or know about God?
  • How could you feel more like a missionary where you are each day?
  • How can you serve the nations as a preteen?

Play:
See how many countries you can name from this online quiz.

Was there a country you have never heard of? If so, research some information about that country and take some time to pray for the Gospel to be shared with the citizens of that country.

Sing:
“Nobody”

Live it Out:
Find a local, national, or international missions organization that you can begin praying for and supporting.

Closing Prayer:
God, help us to see all the people around us as people You love. Also, help us to expand our view of the world by learning about Your work all over the world. Amen.

Middle School

God continues to work in the world, and people are invited to join Him in His work

VIEW Middle school CURRICULUM
Theme Verse:
“…but you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be My witnesses both in Jerusalem and in all Judea, and Samaria, and as far as the remotest part of the earth” (Acts 1:8).

Objective:
God continues to work in the world, and people are invited to join Him in His work.

Teach:
Studies show this generation of students is the most information-overloaded in the history of man. They are the most targeted through marketing and media-centered generation—which is not necessarily a bad thing! There is a message behind almost every word students hear and see daily, and they are constantly filtering through what voices and information to either occupy their mind or release. With all of this busyness, it is easy for our students to be sidetracked from what the Lord has in store for them and us!

Many voices are speaking into our every interaction with people and media, and oftentimes the world sees the Lord’s voice is thrown in as just another voice that speaks. When in reality, His voice has authority over all the others! God desires to lead and guide us through our daily lives, away from the voices of the world. Then, we can show His love through His plan to His creation around us. He calls us to live a life on mission for Him as a testimony to the community around us. With the growth and progress of media and technology, not only do we have the ability to live a life on mission in our community, but now it is at our fingertips to be His witnesses around the world with the resources God has provided for us!

Discussion Question(s):
Let this be a time of family discussion.

  • What voices are the hardest to tune out?
  • How can you be God’s witness in your community?
  • Do you feel like people around you know that you are a follower of Christ? Are they followers of Christ?

Play:
Think of all your favorite funny advertisements you’ve seen on billboards, television, or any media! Share a few and maybe watch a few that’ll make you sing or laugh!

Sing:
“Nobody”

Live it Out:
Find a place in Memphis your family can go and serve the community as you seek to live life on mission even here in your “Jerusalem.” Or you could make a list of all of the voices or things that are trying to be heard and realize just how many voices there are!

Closing Prayer:
Lord, help us to live in the power of the Holy Spirit, sharing Christ with those in our family, neighborhood, and all around the world. Amen.

High School

God continues to work in the world, and as we join Him in His work, He uses people to accomplish His eternal purpose.

VIEW High SCHOOL CURRICULUM
Theme Verse:
“…but you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be My witnesses both in Jerusalem and in all Judea, and Samaria, and as far as the remotest part of the earth” (Acts 1:8).

Objective:
God continues to work in the world, and as we join Him in His work, He uses people to accomplish His eternal purpose.

Teach:
Read Acts 1:8. “…but you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be My witnesses both in Jerusalem and in all Judea, and Samaria, and as far as the remotest part of the earth.

Do you know someone who never finishes a project? Some people are very handy—they build houses, remodel houses, build computers, etc. Other people are not quite so handy, so they finally hire a contractor to finish the project. Think about God; there are no pauses or stops in His work. God is always at work and desires to use us to accomplish His purposes.

We have hope to know God is always at work—never idle or done. Because He is always at work to bring more people into salvation, we must never stop sharing the good news. The work of spreading the Gospel in our community never ends. There is always someone who needs to hear the Gospel. There is always someone in need who needs encouragement and ministry. Just as God never stops working, neither should we!

Discussion Question(s):
Let this be a time of family discussion.

  • Knowing God is always at work, what kind of work do you think He does?
  • Have you ever shared the Gospel with anyone? If so, how was it?
  • What are some of the ways you’ve seen others share the Gospel?

Play:
Go around the dinner table and create a prayer list of people who are far from God. Once you’ve created this list, take a few moments to pray for each name.

Sing:
“Come Alive (Dry Bones)”

Live it Out:
The message of the Gospel always needs to be shared. Many of us sit idle in our faith and find excuses rather than sharing the Gospel. Remember, our lives are all for His glory, not ours.

Closing Prayer:
Dear Jesus. There are so many people around me that need to hear the message of the Gospel. I know You desire for them to know You; use me to speak the message they need to hear. Amen.

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