Have you ever felt like you were being attacked by someone? Maybe it wasn’t a physical attack, but more of a battle of words over your beliefs? Even though we in America don’t face the type of persecution people face in other parts of the world, there are still people who have minimized the value of Truth in our nation. It can seem like anyone who does stand for Truth today will be accused of being hateful toward others. How could we respond with gentleness even when people are against us?
GENTLENESS: Responding in a kind and careful way.
MEMORY VERSE: “Always be humble and gentle. Be patient with each other, making allowances for each other’s faults because of your love.” Ephesians 4:2 (NLT)
This Week’s Finish Line: We can be gentle when others are against us
This week, we looked at the story of Stephen, in Acts 6-7. Look at it together with your kids, and read through the story. Stephen is well known in the Bible as being the first Christian martyr, or the first disciple to be killed for his faith in Jesus. He was a faithful man chosen to be a representative for the Church at that time, and the Jews were not thrilled with the way he was sharing about Christ. Because of this, they stoned him to death, but not before Stephen had a chance to share with everyone a compelling sermon of how Scripture points to Jesus in Acts 7.
- Look at Acts 6:5-8. How is Stephen described?
- What did Stephen’s enemies accuse him of? (Acts 6:8-14)
- How did Stephen respond to their attacks? How would you have felt if you were him?
- After Stephen gave his “last words” and the people picked up stones to stone him to death, how did he respond? (Acts 7:60)
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TEACHER: Gentleness is a Strength
At dinner this week, look at 1 Peter 3:8-9 together. What do these verses mean? Discuss how it actually takes a very strong person to respond in a kind and careful way when someone is against you. We often think of being gentle as being weak, when in cases like this, it’s the opposite!
FRIEND: Against Us
While driving in the car this week, ask your kids if they can think of any times when someone has been mean or laughed at them because of what they believe. How did they respond? Role play with your kids examples of ways to respond with gentleness to people against us.
COUNSELOR: Remember Truth
During bedtime this week, discuss with your kids how important it is to be able to tell a lie from truth. When people are attacking you because what you believe is from Scripture, we can be confident to stand firm in Truth! Practically, go over this month’s memory verse together again (Ephesians 4:2), so that you can practice keeping God’s truth always in your heart!
COACH: Lies vs. Truth
One morning this week, play a game while everyone is getting ready for the day called Lies vs. Truth. Make some of the lies silly, like “the sky is green,” and have your kids reply back as quick as they can with “truth” or “lie.” Make some of the lies silly, and some of them more serious, like “God only loves you if you’re good enough.” Come back to these later with Scripture to reinforce the Truths!
Thank God for the hope we have even when others are against us. Ask Him to help you respond gently to enemies even when the falsely accused and attacked you.
Next week we will start studying a new character trait: HOPE. We will look at 1 Chronicles 17 to see how God keeps His promises in Jesus!
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