Saturday: Generosity

Pray: Begin by making the sign of the cross and calling upon God’s name.

From God to us, from death to life, from me to you … in the name of the Father, and of the Son + and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

Mighty Lord, stir up your Holy Spirit in us, as you did for Elizabeth so long ago. Help us to follow where you lead, today and always. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.

Listen: Pay close attention as these verses from the Bible are read aloud.

Luke 1:43-45
[Elizabeth said,] “Why should the mother of my Lord come to me? As soon as I heard your greeting, my baby became happy and moved within me. The Lord has blessed you because you believed that he will keep his promise.”  (CEV)

Engage: Talk about the Bible by having parents respond to children’s questions.

Child: Why do you think Elizabeth’s baby became happy and started to move around? Have you ever seen a happy baby? How does a baby show joy?

Child: According to Elizabeth, why was God pleased with Mary? Do you believe that God keeps his promises?

Affirm: Pray for God to put his Word into action in your daily life.

Dear Lord, we want to have faith like Mary did. Help us with this, and make us into the people that you would have us be. We ask this in Jesus’ name. Amen.

Have each person in the family bless one another with these words.

May you believe God’s promises! Amen.

Friday: Trust

Pray: Begin by making the sign of the cross and calling upon God’s name.

From God to us, from death to life, from me to you …in the name of the Father, and of the Son + and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

O God, help us to understand more about your will as we study Luther’s Small Catechism today. Thank you for all that you do for us. In Jesus’ name we pray, amen.

Listen: Pay close attention to this reminder from Luther’s Small Catechism.

The good and gracious will of God is done indeed without our prayer, but we pray in this petition that it will also be done among us.  (Luther’s Small Catechism)

Engage: Talk about the Bible by having parents respond to children’s questions.

Child: Luther says that God’s will is “good” and “gracious.” How can remembering that help us when we are worried about something?

Child: If God’s will is done even without our prayer, why is it still important to pray to God? Has God ever answered one of your prayers even before you thought to ask for something?

Affirm: Pray for God to put his Word into action in your daily life.

Heavenly Father, we know that we can completely trust you. Help us to grow deeper in faith as we learn more about you each day. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.

Have each person in the family bless one another with these words.

May you trust in God’s good will for your life! Amen.

Thursday: Compassion

Pray: Begin by making the sign of the cross and calling upon God’s name.

From God to us, from death to life, from me to you …in the name of the Father, and of the Son + and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

Dear God, bless those gathered here today, as we talk and pray together. In our daily lives, help us to show kindness to each person we meet. In the name of Jesus Christ, we pray. Amen.

Listen: Pay close attention as the Bible story is read in the form of a rhyme.

Mary told the angel, “Yes;
I’m God’s servant; I’ve been blessed.
I will carry God’s own son.
I will bear the Chosen One.”

Then she left and went to tell
Someone who would listen well;
‘Twas her older cousin, who
Soon would have a baby, too!

“Mary,” said her cousin dear,
“I’m so glad to see you here!
God has blessed you; this I know,
For my babe has told me so.”

Engage: Talk about the Bible by having parents respond to children’s questions.

Child: Mary must have liked Elizabeth, since she went to tell her about Jesus. Who was the first person you told when you found out you would have me as a baby? How did you tell them, and how did they respond?

Child: Elizabeth welcomed Mary to her home with kindness. What are some ways we can welcome people who come to our home, school, and church?

Affirm: Pray for God to put his Word into action in your daily life.

Holy God, thank you for the people who care for us, and who are happy when we have good news! May we rejoice with others when they have good news to share, as well. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.

Have each person in the family bless one another with these words.

May you welcome others with kindness!  Amen.

Wednesday: Mercy

Pray: Begin by making the sign of the cross and calling upon God’s name.

From God to us, from death to life, from me to you … in the name of the Father, and of the Son + and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

Almighty God, thank you for showing us mercy, and for caring for us each and every day. Help us to grow closer to you as we study your Word now. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.

Listen: Pay close attention as these verses from the Bible are read aloud.

Luke 1:42
The Holy Spirit came upon Elizabeth. Then in a loud voice she said to Mary: “God has blessed you more than any other woman! He has also blessed the child you will have.” (CEV)

Engage: Talk about the Bible by having parents respond to children’s questions.

Child: Elizabeth said that Mary was “blessed.” What does it mean to be blessed by God? In what ways has God blessed you with good things?

Child: Do you think God can use people like us to be a blessing to others? How might that happen?

Affirm: Pray for God to put his Word into action in your daily life.

God of grace, thank you for good friends and relatives, who give us courage and strength. May we lift up the people around us, and help them see the blessings in their lives. We ask this in the name of Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Have each person in the family bless one another with these words.

May you be a blessing to others! Amen.

Tuesday: Struggle

Pray: Begin by making the sign of the cross and calling upon God’s name.

From God to us, from death to life, from me to you …in the name of the Father, and of the Son + and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

Lord God, please guide us today, as we continue to study your Word. Help us to share the good news of Jesus with others, as Mary did. In the name of Jesus Christ we pray. Amen.

Listen: Pay close attention as these verses from the Bible are read aloud.

Luke 1:39-41
A short time later Mary hurried to a town in the hill country of Judea. She went into Zechariah’s home, where she greeted Elizabeth. When Elizabeth heard Mary’s greeting, her baby moved within her. (CEV)

Engage: Talk about the Bible by having parents respond to children’s questions.

Child: Who are some of your relatives? Elizabeth was a relative of Mary. Why do relatives often get together on special occasions?

Child: Elizabeth’s baby moved within her when he heard Mary’s voice. Have you ever seen a baby move in its mother’s tummy? Have you ever felt it? What is that like?

Affirm: Pray for God to put his Word into action in your daily life.

Heavenly Father, no matter what is going on in the world, a baby is a sign of hope. Bless expectant mothers and newborns everywhere, and thank you for sending your own son into our world, to help and save us. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.

Have each person in the family bless one another with these words.

May you share the good news of Jesus with others! Amen.

Monday: Understanding

Pray: Begin by making the sign of the cross and calling upon God's name.

From God to us, from death to life, from me to you …in the name of the Father, and of the Son + and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

O God, as we look forward to the fun of Christmas, may we never forget the true “reason for the season.” Be with us now, as we learn more of our Savior’s story. We ask this through Jesus Christ, our Lord. Amen.

Listen: Pay close attention as these verses from the Bible are read aloud.

Luke 1:39-45
A short time later Mary hurried to a town in the hill country of Judea. She went into Zechariah’s home, where she greeted Elizabeth. When Elizabeth heard Mary’s greeting, her baby moved within her. The Holy Spirit came upon Elizabeth.

Then in a loud voice she said to Mary: “God has blessed you more than any other woman! He has also blessed the child you will have. Why should the mother of my Lord come to me? As soon as I heard your greeting, my baby became happy and moved within me. The Lord has blessed you because you believed that he will keep his promise.” (CEV)

Engage: Talk about the Bible by having parents respond to children’s questions.

Child: How did Elizabeth react when she saw Mary? How did Elizabeth’s baby respond? How might you have reacted if you were at Elizabeth’s house that day.

Child: The Holy Spirit who came to Elizabeth is also our Helper and Comforter. Can you think of a time in your life when the Holy Spirit helped you in some way? Tell us about that.

Affirm: Pray for God to put his Word into action in your daily life.

Heavenly Father, thank you for the gift of your son, Jesus! May we receive him into our lives joyfully, as Elizabeth did so long ago. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.

Have each person in the family bless one another with these words:

May you be filled with joy! Amen.

Sunday: Worship

Pray:  Begin by making the sign of the cross and calling upon God’s name.

From God to us, from death to life, from me to you … in the name of the Father, and of the Son + and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

Gracious Lord God, stir up your Holy Spirit in us now, as we settle in to study your Word. Teach us, and help us to follow you. In the name of Jesus Christ, we pray. Amen.

Listen: Pay close attention as these verses from the Bible are read aloud.

Psalm 119:57-58
The LORD is my portion; I promise to keep your words. I entreat your favor with all my heart; be gracious to me according to your promise. (ESV)

Engage: Talk about the Bible by having parents respond to children’s questions.

Child: When we say that we will obey God, what does that mean? Are there times when it is easier to obey than other times?

Child: God has promised to be kind to us. Do you think God ever uses a hard time in our lives to bring about something good? How might that actually be kind?

Affirm: Pray for God to put his Word into action in your daily life.

Lord God, we want to obey you, but sometimes that is hard to do. Please help us. Make us into the people you would have us be. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.

Have each person in the family bless one another with these words.

May you follow Jesus! Amen.