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Sunday, June 17 in Elementary KidzTown

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Key Passage: Acts 2:42,47

Big Picture Question: Who can do God’s work? God gives every believer skills for doing His work.

Christ Connection: The apostles believed that everyone in the church had an important job to do to serve God’s people and help spread the gospel. Jesus wants us to serve others so that the message of His death and resurrection can be heard and believed all over the world.

Our journey takes us to Jerusalem where the early church was booming with growth. There were two groups of Jews in the first church: Jews who spoke Greek and Jews who spoke Hebrew. The Greek-speaking Jews were from foreign countries, and the Hebrew-speaking Jews had been born in Israel. Tension existed between the two groups. The Greek-speaking Jews complained that their widows were not being cared for properly.

The Old Testament law was clear that God commanded His people to care for the orphans and widows. (See Ex. 22:22; Deut. 10:18.) The early church continued this Jewish custom, but the Greek-speaking Jews claimed their widows were not getting their share of the daily distributions.

The twelve apostles were quick to address the issue. They gathered all the believers together. The apostles explained that God had called them to preaching and teaching. They were not above handling problems among the people, but they wisely led the church to choose seven leaders to oversee such duties.

The church did not choose just anyone to serve; the men were reputable, full of the Spirit, and wise. The chosen seven were Stephen, Philip, Prochorus (PRAHK uh ruhs), Nicanor (nigh KAY nawr), Timon (TIGH mahn), Parmenas (PAHR mih nuhs), and Nicolaus (nik uh LAY uhs). Now the apostles were free to devote themselves to prayer and preaching, and the widows were properly cared for.

Everyone in the church has a role in God’s work. The apostles believed that everyone in the church had an important job to do to serve God's people and help spread the gospel. The seven men who were chosen used their abilities to take care of others. Jesus wants us to serve others so that the message of His death and resurrection can be heard and believed all over the world.

Activity:  Read Acts 6:1-7. Talk about how seven men were chosen to help take care of widows, women whose husbands had died. Think about an elderly person you know who may have recently lost a spouse or loved one. Talk about skills God has given your family members. Talk about ways they might serve and choose to do one of the suggestions this week.

Posted by Erin Krotz with

Sunday, June 10th in Early Childhood KidzTown

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A Cheerful Giver (2 Corinthians 9: 1-5, 9:6-15)

Unit Key Passage: 2 Corinthians 5:17 Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come. The old has gone, the new is here!
Unit Big Picture Question: Who changes us? God changes us to be more like Jesus
Lesson Main Point: God wants us to give to others.
Christ Connection: God has been merciful and generous to us. He gave us the greatest gift—His own Son. Jesus showed us what generosity looks like when He gave up His life to save us from sin. Because of Jesus, we can be merciful and generous to others.
Bible Story: A Cheerful Giver (2 Corinthians 8: 1-5, 9:6-15)
Paul had written a letter (1 Corinthians) addressing several sins that were being tolerated in the church at Corinth. The letter had been a risk. The Corinthians may have rejected Paul, but they did not.
Paul wrote 2 Corinthians to celebrate what God had done in the church and to call on them for help. The church in Jerusalem was in desperate need of help, so Paul was collecting money from the other churches on their behalf.
Paul encouraged the Corinthians to be generous. He told them about the churches in Macedonia. Macedonia was an area north of Corinth. The Christians there were suffering, and they did not have a lot of wealth. Nevertheless, they had joy and gave as much as they could to help others.
Paul encouraged the believers at Corinth to give too. Giving is one way we can show we love God. God is generous to us, so we can be generous to others. Jesus was rich; He had glory and honor in heaven. But He gave that up and became poor by coming to earth to help sinners.
Jesus did this so that we, who had nothing, could become rich. Now we have salvation and eternal life in Jesus. As a result, Paul wanted the Corinthians to give generously and joyfully, out of gratitude for what God has done.
Your kids may feel like the churches in Macedonia who had little to give, but encourage them the same way Paul encouraged the church in Corinth. It is not the amount that we give that glorifies God—it is our level of generosity and joy when we give. 
Activity:  Caution your kids not to give out of duty but out of gratitude; God loves a cheerful giver. Help your kids find ways they can give—whether time or money or talents—to advance the work of the gospel in your city, your nation, and the world. There are two activities (pictured above) that we sent home that could help you do that:

Kindness Coupons: Read through the coupons  with your child (or create your own!) and help them brainstorm who they could help specific people with the coupons. Choose a date for each task. As your child completes each coupon task, remind them that we can give to other because Jesus gave his life for us. 
Coin Bags: Work with your child to find opportunities to earn money for the purpose of giving to the church & save it in their bag. As your child earns money, remind them that we give to the church to help others hear to the good news that Jesus gave his life for the forgiveness of our sins.  Next Sunday, help your child drop off their donation to the donation box in the lobby.

Posted by Alison Hansen with

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