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  • Mailing Address: P.O. Box 4540, Pineville, LA, 71361

 

 

Family Devotion

3 Tips for Starting a Successful Family Devotion Time

Make a plan and stick to it. Set a consistent time to gather together and read God’s Word.

Include everyone, even the littles. While it may seem easier to have a family devotion with just the ones who can sit and listen, it is so important to include your little ones in this family time. 

Get everyone involved. There are several ways each person in the family can be involved, no matter their age. Little ones can offer up prayer requests. As they get older, they can learn to record prayer requests in a family notebook or read the Bible passage when they can. As your kids get older, try asking them to lead the family devotion one night: let them be in charge.

12/30/20 - Happy New Year

MUSIC

If your family enjoys singing, fire up a laptop or tablet.  The following songs are some that we sing at PBC and can be found (with words) on YouTube.

When I Think About The Lord

Holy Spirit

Reckless Love

How He Loves Us

 DEVOTIONAL

The word “new” always seems to bring excitement with it! I remember, as a child, when my parents would buy a new Matchbox car to add to my collection. Think back to that first new (or new-to-you) car…you wanted to show it off to everyone. Just this week we’ve spent time ripping into boxes filled with new things that loved ones chose as gifts for us. New things are a lot of fun!.

What are some reasons new things are so much fun?

Everyone share a favorite gift you received this Christmas.

When you think about turning the calendar to January, have you ever thought about a new year in the same way we think about a new item? A new year holds tremendous potential for excitement, happiness, and fresh experiences.

What is your favorite memory from 2020?

What is one thing you are looking forward to in 2021?

READ Jeremiah 29:11

Do not be mistaken, this verse does not promise an increase in financial wealth or even that we will add more “stuff” to our collection.  Although one or both of those may happen, God’s “plans to prosper you” are that you would find your joy in a relationship with Jesus Christ and experience Him working in and through your life. Let that sink in for a moment…the God of the universe wants to use your life to spread the truth of His Son and be a blessing to others! Hopefully, that causes your heart rate to increase a bit with excitement and brings a new meaning to the phrase “Happy New Year!”.

“Plans for a hope and a future” should bring a sense of security knowing that God has thought through our tomorrows and has already made arrangements to care for us.  Knowing this, maybe 2021 will be a great opportunity for your family to consider how to be a blessing to others.

READ Romans 10:14-15

Spend several minutes thinking through the following questions.  Consider listing thoughts from family members to help develop a plan for 2021.

Because God has blessed me so greatly, how can I be a blessing to my family?

Our church is connected with several ministries in the Alexandria/Pineville area. Might there be a day or two this year that I might volunteer some time to serve with one of them?

When everyone has had the opportunity to share thoughts, pray and ask God to give you clear thoughts related to this conversation.  Thank Him for blessing you and for the plan, He has for your life.

Happy New Year!  We are excited about all God has in store for 2021.

"Happy New Year - 2019" used by permission from FBC Haughton. 

01/06/21 - REDEEM

MUSIC

If your family enjoys singing, fire up a laptop or tablet and consider the following songs your family can sing together with words on the screen!

Good Good Father

Do It Again

Rescue

How He Loves Us

God's Not Done With You

DEVOTIONAL

New Years is often a time when we begin to set goals as we look forward to a new year, but for some of us it could be a time of redemption. Redemption simply means the act of making something better or more acceptable.  Most of our favorite movies have this theme in them as well. For example, the movie “We Are Marshall” is based in Huntington, WV in 1971. The entire Marshall football team and coaching staff was involved in a plane crash that killed everyone onboard. The next year as the town was in mourning, they assembled a new team to take the field and compete. It is a great story that shows even in when times get difficult, we can still move forward!

As you look back at your last year, did it turn out how you wanted? Were there portions that you wish were different? Just like in the movie, we have a chance to rebuild and try again! I love the passage in Isaiah 44:22; which says

“I have blotted out, like a thick cloud, your transgressions, And like a cloud, your sins. Return to Me, for I have redeemed you.”

That is such an encouraging statement as we look towards what 2021 has in store for us. I am so thankful that as we move forward, we don’t have to worry about the things in our past, because just as this passage says, they have been blotted out! We have been redeemed by God to move forward looking to serve him.

Fun Object Lesson

Have an orange for everyone who is participating and ask them to go ahead and start peeling the orange and have the slices laid out when they are done. When they are about halfway finished tell them to STOP for just a second. Tell them you want to have a competition to see who can put the orange back together the best. Provide them with some supplies such as different kinds of tape, staplers, paper clips, string, rubber bands, glue, scissors, and anything else that might be helpful to “put the orange back together”. Then give them 5 minutes to try and put the orange back together as best as they can. After the five minutes is up look at the oranges and ask these questions.

How much does the orange look like it did when we first started?

Is there any way that we could make the orange look the way it originally did?

Are there any similarities with this orange and the way sin affects our lives?

When God created the world, he made everything to work in perfect harmony, however when sin entered, it messed up everything. Often in our own lives we try to put ourselves back together and we will often look like this orange. However, if we can come to the one who originally created us, he can do a mighty work in us! Just as in Ephesians 2:8-9

 For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast.”

So before you move on to 2021 take a few moments and reflect on 2020. Ask God to forgive you and to redeem you as you look towards 2021!

(Lead your family in a guided prayer time)

A.C.T.S Prayer is a great one to lead them through.

A – Adoration:  Tell God how much you adore him.

C – Confession: Confessing to God what you have done and asking for forgiveness.

T – Thanksgiving: Thanking God for what he has done for you.

S – Supplication: Asking God for the needs in your life.

Give about 1 minute for each of these and then close in prayer over your family! This is a great model for what a quiet time prayer could look like for your child or students.

Used by permission from FBC Haughton.

01/13/21 - AM I A GOOD FRIEND

MUSIC

If your family enjoys singing, fire up a laptop, tablet, or smart phone!  The following songs are some that we sing at FBCH and can be found (with words) on YouTube at the following links.

What a Beautiful Name It Is

Good, Good Father

Holy Spirit

INTRODUCTION (Optional)

A friend is defined as “one attached to another by affection or esteem.”[1]  This is someone with whom you have experienced victories, disappointments, boredom, and adventure.  Someone that you enjoy spending time with and that shares similar interests with you.  A friend is different than an acquaintance, who is described as “a person who one knows but who is not a particularly close friend.”[2]  These are the people that you work with or go to school with.  You may enjoy talking to them but don’t really spend much time with them.

ASK:  Who are your friends?

Five Finger Friendship Challenge: Have each person trace their hand on a piece of paper. On each finger of your drawing write a way you can be a good friend. For example: be kind, show gratitude, give a gift, do a chore for them, share, etc.

In 1 Samuel 18, we are introduced to a very extraordinary friendship.  Jonathan was the son of King Saul and would have been crowned king himself after his father died.  David was selected by God to be the next king and had been anointed with oil by the prophet Samuel.  This unlikely duo became very close friends that cared deeply for one another.  In fact, when King Saul had become angry and jealous of David, it was Jonathan who stood up to his father, protected David, and warned him of his father’s plans to hurt David.

READ 1 Samuel 18:1-5, 19:1-7, 20:1-42

Discussion

Being a good friend...Requires Self-Sacrifice

1.  Jonathan’s friendship with David was at the cost of his own career.

2.  Friendship is not about what they can do for you.

Being a good friend...Requires Loyalty

1.  Jonathan openly defended and protected David from his father.

Being a good friend...Requires Commitment

1. David and Jonathan took steps to keep their families from being rivals.

ASK:  How do you treat your friends?

1. Do you encourage them with words? 

2. Are you kind to them even if they do something that upsets you?

3. What can you do this week to be better friends with the people that live around you?  (Parents, help your child think through a task to complete).

A wise man once said, “To have friends, you have to be a friend.”

FAMILIES WITH TEENAGERS

Use the passages to help your teen understand that our friends influence us.  In the same way, we influence our friends.  Engage your teen in discussion about their friends and how they see these two ideas in their friendships.  (Hint: parents, consider allowing teens to use generic terms rather than a friend’s name…especially if it isn’t the most positive friendship on the planet.)

FAMILIES WITH CHILDREN

Use the passages to help your child understand that our friends are a gift from God. We must be kind to them, pray for them, defend them, and seek ways to care for them.

PRAYER

Dear God, I pray for my friend ___________. Thank you for giving me a good friend. Please help me be a good friend. In Jesus’ name, amen.

*For older children, teenagers, or adults encourage each to pray on their own using their own language. It’s important for each person to learn to verbalize their faith.

Want further study on this topic?

Proverbs 17:17 A friend loves at all times and a brother is born for adversity.

Mark 2:1-12 is the story of four men lowering their paralytic friend through the roof of a house to be healed.

Proverbs 18:24 A man of many companions may come to ruin, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother.

Proverbs 13:20 He who walks with the wise grows wise, but a companion of fools suffers harms.

John 15:13 Greater Love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends.

Proverbs 27:17 As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another.

Proverbs 22:24-25 Do not make friends with a hot-tempered man, do not associate with one easily angered, or you may learn his ways and get yourself ensnared.

Ecclesiastes 4:9-10 Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their work; If one falls down, his friend can help him up. But pity the man who falls and has no one to help him up!

[1] https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/friend

[2] https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/acquaintance

"Am I a Good Friend" is used by permission from FBC Haughton.