The Bible

Empowered by the Spirit- Part 2

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When the Holy Spirit empowers us to be witnesses, He also gives us special abilities that are beyond our natural skills and talents. At first blush, this might seem outlandish or kooky, but in reality, these abilities are functional, highly useful tools for the mission we’ve been entrusted with.

1 Corinthians 12:7-8 [NLT] “A spiritual gift is given to each of us so we can help each other. To one person the Spirit gives the ability to give wise advice…”

This Holy Spirit ability is beyond normal human wisdom – it’s God-empowered insight into a situation, which shows someone the answer to a problem, or the best course of action to take.

Q . Has anyone ever given you wise advice or a problem-solving insight? Think of a specific example. How did that advice make your life better? Did it make you more or less likely to trust that person’s words and intentions?

Q . Have you ever had an “aha!” moment, when the right course of action, or words, or answer suddenly came to you? Have you ever received that type of breakthrough for someone else’s problem?

2. Challenge

1 Corinthians 12:8 [NLT] “…to another the same Spirit gives a message of special knowledge.”

The second gift Paul mentions is special knowledge – when the Holy Spirit reveals information to someone that they could not have known otherwise.

Q . God will sometimes reveal information to someone as a warning, or encouragement to be given, or a specific thing to pray about. How is that different from a psychic or mind-reader?

Q . Has anyone ever spoken one of these “words of knowledge” to you? How did it make you feel? How did it affect your life in that situation?

3. Prayer Focus

Take a few minutes as a family: thank God for the special abilities He gives through the Holy Spirit’s empowerment. Ask Him to help you grow in the ability that He’s entrusted to you.


Family with Small Children Discussion Guide

The World’s Most Expensive Fruit

1. Power Verse

Romans 6:23 “For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life through Christ Jesus our Lord.”

What’s Up:  “Sin Costs A High Price!”

This week, we continue the series called, “The Garden”. In this series, we will look at the four characters involved in the first sin in the Garden of Eden: Satan, Adam, Eve, and God. In this lesson, we learn about the HIGH price of giving in to temptation. It’s a price that is NEVER worth it.

2. Read

Genesis 3:6-23“The woman saw that the tree’s fruit was good to eat and pleasing to look at. She also saw that it would make a person wise. So she took some of the fruit and ate it. She also gave some to her husband, who was with her. And he ate it. The Lord God said to Adam, “You listened to your wife’s suggestion. You ate fruit from the tree I warned you about. I said, ‘You must not eat its fruit.’ “So I am putting a curse on the ground because of what you did. All the days of your life you will have to work hard. It will be painful for you to get food from the ground. You will eat plants from the field, even though the ground produces thorns and prickly weeds. You will have to work hard and sweat a lot to produce the food you eat. You were made out of the ground. You will return to it when you die. You are dust, and you will return to dust.” So the Lord God drove the man out of the Garden of Eden. He sent the man to farm the ground he had been made from.”

3. Discussion

Q. What was the price Adam and Eve paid for their sin in the Garden?

Adam gave in to temptation, just as Eve did. They knew better, but they did it anyway. As a result, they paid the price for it. They were separated from God, thrown out of the garden, and forced to work a life of blood, sweat, and tears.

So often, we think that we can just “go ahead and sin” and it won’t matter. After all, it’s just one sin. Can that really be that big of a deal?

The truth is, all it takes is ONE sin for us to have to pay the ultimate price of separation from God forever. It was true for Adam and Eve, and it is true for us.

4. Prayer Focus

Pray with your child if they feel that they have been paying the high price of giving into temptation. Pray that God will help them realize the price of sin and work to never give into temptation.

Empowered by the Spirit- Part 1

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Adult & Teen Discussion Guide

1. Discussion 

The Holy Spirit works with us to empower us, but we as Christians often get the wrong idea about why. That power is meant to make us more effective witnesses, representing Jesus to a world that needs to see and hear the gospel.

Acts 1:8 [ESV] But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses…”

Jesus explained that the disciples would become something new – something they had never been before. The work of the Holy Spirit produces a new you, by coming beside you to strengthen, direct and instruct you.

Q . Have you been baptized in the Holy Spirit? When did that happen?  What was that experience like for you?

Q . If so, did you notice a change in how you lived for God and reached out to the lost from before you were baptized?

2. Challenge

Acts 1:8 [ESV] But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses…”

The empowerment of the Holy Spirit isn’t primarily about gifts, or speaking in tongues- it’s about being an effective witness of Jesus. The more accurately we represent Jesus with our actions and our words, the more effective we are at bringing His good news to a lost world.

Q. Which actions in your life best represent Jesus? Which ones least represent Him? How about words that best or least represent Him?

Q. Which areas in your community or your personal life need an accurate witness of Jesus the most?

3. Prayer Focus

Take a few minutes as a family: thank God for sending the Holy Spirit to empower believers. If you haven’t been baptized in the Holy Spirit – ask Him to fill you! Ask the Holy Spirit to highlight for you where and how He needs you to represent Jesus to your world.


Family with Small Children Discussion Guide

Satan’s Plan for your life

1. Power Verse

John 10:10 [NIV] “The thief’s purpose is to steal and kill and destroy…”

What’s Up:  “With God’s Help, I Know I Can Stomp All Over Satan’s Plan!”

This week, we start a brand new series called, “The Garden”. In this series, we will look at the four characters involved in the first sin in the Garden of Eden: Satan, Adam, Eve, and God. In this lesson, we learn how to recognize the tricks of their enemy, Satan.

2. Read

Genesis 3:2-6 “The woman said to the serpent, “We may eat fruit from the trees in the garden. But God did say, ‘You must not eat the fruit from the tree in the middle of the garden. Do not even touch it. If you do, you will die.’ ”

“You will certainly not die,” the serpent said to the woman. “God knows that when you eat fruit from that tree, you will know things you have never known before. Like God, you will be able to tell the difference between good and evil.”

The woman saw that the tree’s fruit was good to eat and pleasing to look at. She also saw that it would make a person wise. So she took some of the fruit and ate it. She also gave some to her husband, who was with her. And he ate it. Then both of them knew things they had never known before.”

3. Discussion

Q. Have you ever wanted to do something that you knew was wrong? (steal from the store, cheat on a test, etc.) 

Satan has a plan to trap us into temptation and draw us into sin. Each day he sets traps to lure us into disobeying God. Sadly, many people do not realize this.

Q. What are some temptations that people struggle with in this world?

Q. What are some temptations that you struggle with in your life?

We all face temptation. Some are tempted to lie. Others are tempted to disobey. Still others are tempted to cheat, steal, and hurt others.

If we are going to avoid temptation, we must be aware that Satan is out there. We must be constantly aware of the traps he’s laid out for us. If we ever think “it could never happen to me, there’s nothing to worry about,” then we will likely fall into his trap.

4. Prayer Focus

Pray with your child that God will enable them to always be on guard and watching so that they do not fall into the devil’s trap.

Prayer

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Adult & Teen Discussion Guide

Prayer is a lot less complicated than we often make it out to be – and a lot more important. When we stay in communication with God, we’re more effective as ministers to the people around us.

1. Discussion 

Matthew 6:9 [NLT] Pray like this: Our Father in heaven, may your name be kept holy.”

Jesus instructed us to come to God in prayer with a balanced understanding of 2 roles. He is both the Creator-Judge of the universe, who transcends time and space, and the personal Father who loves us and knows the number of hairs on our heads. A healthy prayer life needs to reflect both of these realities.

Q . Which aspect of God’s character does your prayer angle toward most – God the transcendent Creator, or God the intimate Father?

Q . Think back to when you were growing up, or first learning about prayer. How did the people you looked up to pray? Were their prayers quiet or loud? Formal or casual? Short or long? How similar is your prayer today to the examples early in your life? Is that a good thing, or not?

2. Challenge

Psalm 27:4 [MSG] “I’m asking God for one thing, only one thing: To live with him in his house my whole life long. I’ll contemplate his beauty; I’ll study at his feet.”

Prayer is ultimately bigger than presenting needs or giving thanks, it’s about knowing God. When we pray, we draw our hearts closer to God, and the better we know Him, the better we’ll serve Him.

Q . Which aspect of prayer do you normally spend the most time on – praise and thanks, presenting your needs, presenting needs of others, or listening? Which is the easiest for you? Which is the most difficult or awkward for you?

Q . If the goal of prayer is to know God better and align your heart with His, what would an ideal prayer life look like for you?

3. Prayer Focus

Take a few minutes as a family: affirm God as both your Creator and your Father. Ask Him for what you need and for the needs of others, then take some time to be quiet and listen.


Family with Small Children Discussion Guide

Prayer

1. Power Verse

Matthew 6:8 [NIV] “…your Father knows what you need before you ask him.”

What’s Up: “Gonna give God a call because He knows it all!”

How do you pray? Tell God how much you love Him.  Isn’t it nice when a friend starts off a conversation by telling you how much they love you!  What are the things that are making us worry?  Are there things that make us afraid? God already knows all about these things, but He loves hearing about them from you! 

2. Read

Matthew 6:9-13 [NIVR]  

“This is how you should pray. ‘Our Father in heaven, may your name be honored. May your kingdom come. May what you want to happen be done on earth as it is done in heaven. Give us today our daily bread. And forgive us our sins, just as we also have forgiven those who sin against us. Keep us from sinning when we are tempted. Save us from the evil one.’’’ 

3. Discussion

Q. Do you have a friend or relative that lives far away?

Sometimes you may only get to see each other once a year, so it’s really hard to keep in touch.  You might call or send each other messages often. It is fun to share stories about the things you are doing and pictures of your family.  These messages help us to learn things about each other and help keep our friendships close.

That is a lot like how praying to God works!  

God wants us to grow closer to Him, and we do that by talking to Him.  We tell him about the things that happen each day.  We let Him know about what is going on with our family and friends.  God wants to hear about the things that scare us or cause us to worry and the things that bring us joy.

Just like our friends, we get to know God better by talking to Him.  

Q. Who is your favorite person to talk with on the phone?  Why?

Q. Can we talk to God in the same way that we might talk to a good friend? 

Q. What are some things we might be able to talk to God about together?

Praying is not just talking to God, it also involves listening to God.  

Q. Have you ever heard God talk to you?  What are some ways that we can hear His voice?

4. Prayer Focus

Pray with your children and tell God know how much you love Him. Then tell God all about the things that make you both sad and happy. God loves to hear from you!

Bearing Fruit

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Adult & Teen Discussion Guide

Being a minister in your world doesn’t mean preaching sermons on your lunch break. It usually happens in much subtler ways, like being someone known for your love, patience, and self-control.

1. Discussion 

Galatians 5:13 [ESV] For you were called to freedom, brothers. Only do not use your freedom as an opportunity for the flesh, but through love serve one another.”

Free will can either be a hall pass for self-indulgence, or the freedom to let your mind choose God’s ways, instead of being a slave to your physical urges and default reactions. With the Holy Spirit’s help, you can discipline your life to serve others (and be healthy in the process).

Q . What’s a default reaction in your life that you wish you could reprogram?

Q . What’s a human desire that pulls you in the opposite direction from what God wants? Is the end result of indulging that desire a healthier you?

2. Challenge

Galatians 5:22–23 [ESV] “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law.”

The evidence of a God-empowered life is the character you develop. There’s no greater testimonial for God’s life-changing power than for people to watch it happen in you.

Q . Which of these attributes comes most naturally to you? Which is the hardest for you?

Q . Can you think of a professing Christian you’ve known who exhibited very few or none of these? What conclusion do you draw about their relationship with God?

Q . Pick a battleground fruit in your life, one that is challenging for you. What’s a first step you could take this week to do things God’s way in that area? (Remember, it’s the Holy Spirit who empowers you to change at all!)

3. Prayer Focus

Take a few minutes as a family: thank God for the power to say ‘no’ to selfish urges and default behaviors. Ask the Holy Spirit to develop the kind of character in you that’s obvious to the people around you.


Family with Small Children Discussion Guide

Trust & Obey

1. Power Verse

Deuteronomy 8:6 “So obey the commands of the Lord your God by walking in his ways and fearing him.”

What’s Up:  “I Don’t Get It, That’s Okay! I’m Gonna Obey Anyway!”

If we will trust and obey God, there is no limit to what He can do in our lives. When God speaks, we should obey. It doesn’t matter if what He says makes sense to us. We are to obey simply because we are His children and He is our Heavenly Father. If we will obey no matter what, we will find ourselves in the same spot that Naaman found himself – on the other side of his miracle. God is not asking us to “earn” His power. He is asking us to trust Him and obey Him.

2. Read

2 Kings 5  Elisha Naaman was army commander of the king of Aram. He was very important to his master and was highly respected. He was a brave soldier. But he had a skin disease. Groups of soldiers from Aram had marched out. They had captured a young girl from Israel. She became a servant of Naaman’s wife. She said, “I wish my master would go and see the prophet who is in Samaria. He would heal my master of his skin disease.” So Naaman went to see Elisha. Elisha sent a messenger out to him. The messenger said, “Go! Wash yourself in the Jordan River seven times. Then your skin will be healed. You will be pure and ‘clean’ again.” But Naaman went away angry. He said, “I was sure Elisha would come out to me. I thought he would stand there and pray to the Lord his God. I thought he would wave his hand over my skin. Then I would be healed.” So he turned and went away. He was very angry. Naaman’s servants went over to him. They said, “What if Elisha the prophet had told you to do some great thing? Wouldn’t you have done it? But he only said, ‘Wash yourself. Then you will be pure and “clean.” ’ You should be even more willing to do that!” So Naaman went down to the Jordan River. He dipped himself in it seven times. He did exactly what the man of God had told him to do. Then his skin was made pure again. It became “clean” like the skin of a young boy. Naaman and all his attendants went back to the man of God. Naaman stood in front of Elisha. Naaman said, “Now I know that there is no God anywhere in the whole world except in Israel. So please accept a gift from me.”

3. Discussion

Q. What was the name of the army officer? From what did he suffer? 

Q. What did Elisha tell Naaman to do? How did Naaman respond at first to Elisha’s instructions?

Q. What happened after the seventh dip in the river?

Q. Have you ever had a time that God spoke to you? Did it make sense?

Q. Have you ever disobeyed God but wish you had obeyed?

Q. When is a time you obeyed God? What came from your obedience? Was it worth it?

4. Prayer Focus

Pray for your children to trust God no matter the difficulty. Pray that they will begin to trust God to come through in the toughest situations. Pray for them to obey God’s commands. Remind them that blessing follows obedience.

Meet the Need

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Adult & Teen Discussion Guide

The calling to be a “minister” is not just about general principles, it’s about the day to day, practical life things you can do to represent God’s character to the world around you. One great way to do that is by meeting the needs of people around you.

1. Discussion 

Philippians 2:4 [NLT] Don’t look out only for your own interests, but take an interest in others, too..”

Before you can meet a need, you have to see a need. When we begin to really look for various needs in the people we interact with, we can start to be there for them in tangible ways that leave a big impact.

 Q . Money is an easy-to-see need, but it’s far from the only one, and often isn’t even the greatest one. List a few other types of needs that people experience in life.

 Q . What do you have an availability of that could meet someone else’s need? Time, money, energy, companionship, advice, encouragement?

2. Challenge

Philippians 2:5-7 [NLT] “Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant…”

The cost to serve is high – emptying yourself – but that cost earns you a great benefit. Once you become a need-meeting person, you earn the right to speak into the lives of the people around you.

Q . Give an example of a need-meeting person in your life. Name a few specific ways they’ve met needs for you, or for others.

Q . What does that need-meeting value say about the rest of this person’s character? Does their selflessness inspire you to want to be like them in that way? 

Q . Now, think of someone who’s generally a taker. Do you have more or less respect for this person? Which person would you rather be around? Which would you rather take advice from?

3. Prayer Focus

Take a few minutes as a family: thank God for the people in your life who have served you by meeting your needs. Ask the Holy Spirit to help you to become more aware of the wide variety of needs in the people around you.


Family with Small Children Discussion Guide

Poison In The Pot

1. Power Verse

Psalm 97:10 “…[God] protects the lives of his godly people and rescues them from the power of the wicked.”

What’s Up: “God Can Protect Me & Provide For My Needs!”

This week, we continue our series called, “Elisha: God’s Powerful Prophet.” In this lesson, we learn from the story of Elisha and the poison in the stew. We learn that God will protect and provide for His children!

2. Read

2 Kings 4:38-41  Elisha returned to Gilgal. There wasn’t enough food to eat in that area. The group of the prophets was meeting with Elisha. So he said to his servant, “Put the large pot over the fire. Cook some stew for these prophets.” One of them went out into the fields to gather herbs. He found a wild vine and picked some of its gourds. He picked as many as he could fit in his coat. Then he cut them up and put them into the pot of stew. But no one knew what they were. The stew was poured out for the men. They began to eat it. But then they cried out, “Man of God, the food in that pot will kill us!” They couldn’t eat it. Elisha said, “Get some flour.” He put it in the pot. He said, “Serve it to the men to eat.” Then there wasn’t anything in the pot that could harm them.

3. Discussion

Q. What was happening at Gigal, the place that Elisha went?

Q. What did Elisha tell his servant to do?

Q. What did the prophets find in the soup?

Q. How did Elisha respond? Was he worried? What did he do to the stew to get rid of the poison?

Q. How did the 100 people get fed?

We serve an amazing God. He is able to do so much more than we can imagine. Often, God knows exactly what we need when we don’t even realize what we need ourselves.

Q. Can you think of a time that God has protected you or provided for your needs?

Q.  Is there anything you feel you need protected from now? 

Q. Do you have any needs in your life?

Q. What should you do about your needs?

4. Prayer Focus

Pray for your children for God’s protection from bullies and things they could face at school. Pray for God to provide for their needs in their lives. Spend some time giving glory to God. End in a time of worship, giving God glory for being our provider and protector.

Brotherly Love

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Adult & Teen Discussion Guide

Everyone has a call to “ministry,” but it’s a lot less mysterious than it seems. Being a light to your world can be as simple as being a good friend.

1. Discussion 

Matthew 11:19 [GW] The Son of Man came eating and drinking, and people say, ‘Look at him! He’s a glutton and a drunk, a friend of tax collectors and sinners!’  “Yet, wisdom is proved right by its actions.”

Jesus didn’t do ministry the way people expected a teacher of the law to. Sure, He taught in the synagogues, but He also taught around dining tables. Spending time with people and building friendships was an integral part of Jesus’ ministry – and it should be part of ours.

Q . Do you think people criticized Jesus more for the types of people He ate with, or for the fact that He did “ministry” in an non-traditional way? Would those types of criticisms be different or mostly the same in today’s church culture?

Q . How would ministering to people by befriending them look in your life? Give a few examples.

2. Challenge

Romans 12:9-10 [NLT] “Don’t just pretend to love others. Really love them…  Love each other with genuine affection (brotherly love), and take delight in honoring each other.”

Ministering by being a friend is not just about time spent – it’s about real, genuine love for someone, being loyal and dependable the way brothers or sisters would be. That kind of friendship gives you access to speak into someone’s life.

Q . Who’s a person in your life who needs a relationship with God? On a scale of 1 to 10, how deep would you say your relationship is with this person?

Q . How would your ability to point this person toward God change if that relationship grew by a point or two?

Q . What’s one thing you could do this week to show genuine, selfless love toward that person?

3. Prayer Focus

Take a few minutes as a family: thank God for the friendships that are already in your life. Ask the Holy Spirit to help you deepen relationships with people who need to know Him.


Family with Small Children Discussion Guide

Are You Thirsty?

1. Power Verse

John 4:14 “But those who drink the water I give will never be thirsty again. It becomes a fresh, bubbling spring within them, giving them eternal life.”

What’s Up: “Take A Drink From Jesus, And You’ll Never Thirst Again!”

In this lesson, we learn that when we have a need, we should admit it to God. From the Bible Story, we learn that when God gives instructions on what to do about our needs, we should listen to what He says, even if it doesn’t make sense. Then, when we’ve admitted our needs and obeyed God’s instructions, we can expect to receive God’s blessings!

2. Read

2 Kings 3:1-24  Joram became king of Israel in Samaria. Joram did what was evil in the sight of the Lord. He kept on committing the sins …also caused Israel to commit those same sins. He sent a message to Jehoshaphat, the king of Judah. Joram said, “The king of Moab is refusing to obey me. Will you go with me to fight against Moab?” “Yes. I’ll go with you,” Jehoshaphat replied. After seven days they ran out of water. There wasn’t any water for the men or their animals.“What should we do now?” exclaimed the king of Israel. “The Lord has called us three kings together. Did he do it only to hand us over to Moab?” But Jehoshaphat asked, “Isn’t there a prophet of the Lord here? Can’t we ask the Lord for advice through him?” So the king of Israel went down to see Elisha. Jehoshaphat and the king of Edom also went there. “The Lord called us three kings together. He did it to hand us over to Moab.” Elisha said, “I serve the Lord who rules over all. You can be sure that he lives. But now bring me someone who plays the harp.” While that person was playing the harp, the Lord’s power came on Elisha. Elisha announced, “The Lord says, ‘I will fill this valley with pools of water.’ This will happen because the Lord says, ‘This valley will be filled with water. Then you will have water to drink.’ This is an easy thing for the Lord to do. He will also hand Moab over to you.” The next day, the time came to offer the morning sacrifice. And then it happened! In fact, the land was filled with water! Now all the people of Moab had heard that the kings had come to fight against them. They got up early in the morning. The sun was already shining on the water. Across the way, the water looked red to the men of Moab. It looked like blood. “That’s blood!” they said. “Those kings must have fought and killed each other. Let’s go, Moab! Let’s take everything that has any value.” So the men of Moab went to the camp of Israel. Just as they arrived there, the men of Israel got ready to fight. They fought against the men of Moab until those men ran away. The men of Israel marched into the land.

3. Discussion

Q. What did the three armies realize after seven days of traveling in the desert? What did they need?

Q. Who did they go to for help? 

Q. What did he say God would do? Did God come through? If so, how?

The world is full of people who have great needs. Even we, as Christians, have significant needs. Sometimes we need healing. Sometimes we need miracles in our families. Sometimes we need friends at school. We all have needs to be met and the solution for all of those needs comes from God!

4. Prayer Focus

Do you have any needs in your life right now? What should we do about the needs we have in our lives?  Pray for your children’s needs. Pray that they will admit their needs to God, do what He says, even if it doesn’t make sense, and begin to receive God’s blessings!

Suit Up

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Adult & Teen Discussion Guide

Most Christians understand that God has a plan, a calling, for their life, but often don’t know what that really means. As it turns out, everyone is called to be a minister – to point other people to the truth about Jesus – and that calling is a lot less mysterious and complicated than we think.

1. Discussion 

Ephesians 4:11 [ESV] “And (Christ) gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the shepherds and teachers, to equip the saints for the work of ministry, for building up the body of Christ…” 

The calling to do the work of the ministry isn’t exclusive to pastors- it’s to all believers, including you!

Q . Before Sunday’s message, what sorts of actions or social roles would you associate with being a “minister?” What actions or roles would you associate with it now?

Q . How does viewing your everyday life as a divine calling change the way you feel about your job / societal role? How should it change your feelings?

2. Challenge

John 15:15 [NLT] “I no longer call you slaves, because a master doesn’t confide in his slaves. Now you are my friends, since I have told you everything the Father told me.”

Jesus built his disciple-making process on authentic, loving friendship. That’s the model that we should use when we set out to make everyday life our mission field.

Q . Does forging new friendships come easily to you, or is it an effort? 

Q . When you look at “being a friend” as an assignment from God, how does it change your willingness to work at it? 

Q . How effective do you think you’d be at sharing the good news about Jesus with a total stranger? How about with someone you’ve been rude or mean to? How about with someone you’ve spent months or years befriending?

3. Prayer Focus

Take a few minutes as a family: thank God for calling you to do meaningful work for Him. Ask the Holy Spirit to help you to see the mission in your everyday life.


Family with Small Children Discussion Guide

Do You See What I See?

1. Power Verse

2 Kings 6:17 “Then Elisha prayed, ‘Lord open his eyes and let him see.’”

What’s Up: “Even When I Cannot See, God’s Right There In Front Of Me!”

This week, we continue our series called, “Elisha: God’s Powerful Prophet.” In this lesson, we learn from a powerful story about Elisha how God opened the eyes of Elisha’s servant to see what was already there: an army of angels ready to do battle and bring the victory! We also learn how to focus on the God we DON’T see rather than the problem we DO see.

2. Read

2 Kings 6:8-23  The king of Aram was at war with Israel. They went at night and surrounded the city. The servant of the man of God got up the next morning. He went out early. He saw that an army with horses and chariots had surrounded the city. “Oh no, my master!” the servant said. “What can we do?” “Don’t be afraid,” the prophet answered. “Those who are with us are more than those who are with them.” Elisha prayed, “Lord, open my servant’s eyes so that he can see.” Then the Lord opened his eyes. Elisha’s servant looked up and saw the hills. He saw that Elisha was surrounded by horses and chariots made of fire. Aram’s army came down toward Elisha. Then he prayed to the Lord, “Make these soldiers blind.” So the Lord made them blind, just as Elisha had prayed. Elisha told them, “This isn’t the right road. This isn’t the right city. Follow me. I’ll lead you to the man you are looking for.” He led them to Samaria.They entered the city. Then Elisha said, “Lord, open the eyes of these men. Help them see again.” Then the Lord opened their eyes. And there they were, inside Samaria! The king of Israel saw them. So he asked Elisha, “Should I kill them? I need your advice. You are like a father to me. Should I kill them?” “Don’t kill them,” he answered. “Would you kill people you have captured with your own sword or bow? Put some food and water in front of them. Then they can eat and drink. They can go back to their master.” So the king of Israel prepared a great feast for them. After they had finished eating and drinking, he sent them away. So the groups of fighting men from Aram stopped attacking Israel’s territory.

3. Discussion

Q. How did Elisha’s servant respond when he saw the armies of Aram had arrived to kill Elisha? How did Elisha respond?

Q. What did Elisha pray and what happened as a result? 

It is easy to get discouraged by what we see or don’t see. We often look in front of us and only see problems, sickness, and defeat. We focus on the problems we DO see and rarely focus on the solution we DON’T see. When we don’t always physically see how God is working on our behalf, we tend to forget He is always there fighting on our behalf. 

Q. Are there times in your life when you wonder if God is really there for you? What should you do when you feel that way?

4. Prayer Focus

Ask your children if they have been struggling with feeling like God is not there. Pray that God will open their eyes to see that He is not only there for them, but He is working to bring the victory for them!