7-8 grade devotion project by Olivia: Don’t Get Distracted

Luke 12:28-31

28And if God cares so wonderfully for flowers that are here today and thrown into the fire tomorrow, he will certainly care for you. Why do you have so little faith? 29 “And don’t be concerned about what to eat and what to drink. Don’t worry about such things. 30These things dominate the thoughts of unbelievers all over the world, but your Father already knows your needs. 31Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and he will give you everything you need.

New Living Translation

There was a time when I was about 8 years old when I worried about money, clothing, food and drink, and possessions. Then, as He always does, God had made the devotion apply to my problem to show me God will always provide. Even to this day, whenever I am going through a hard time, a problem, or I’m starting to worry, God always gives me a sign or sometimes a simple action to show me he will provide, even in the hard times.

Possessions and constant worrying are a big distraction for all people, like worrying about what we will wear,or what we will eat and drink. Instead of constantly worrying, we should trust in God to provide for us. We should trust God to help us, give us clothing, food, and drink. God cares for the ravens and the lilies, and Jesus says “By how much are you more valuable than the birds”. If we become distracted we can drift away from God’s word and what God wants for us. Even the disciples at one point were distracted, and Jesus called them “you of little faith”. Putting your anxiety over possession is a sign that you lack faith. God sees when you are in need, and when He sees your need He will provide for you. How much more valuable are you over people in the bible whom God provided for?  Do you seek food and clothing or do you seek the kingdom of God?

— Questions–

  1. Has there ever been a time where you’ve seen God provide for you?
  2. Has there ever been a time where you feel very left out and sad maybe even depressed, but God sent someone over to you to cheer you up?

Have you ever felt like God has called you to help someone else, who is going through a hard time?

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7-8 grade class devotion by Tegan: The Rich Man and Lazarus

Luke 16:19-31 (NIV) 

There was a rich man who was dressed in purple and fine linen and lived in luxury every day. At his gate was laid a beggar named Lazarus, covered with sores and longing to eat what fell from the rich man’s table. Even the dogs came and licked his sores. “The time came when the beggar died and the angels carried him to Abraham’s side. The rich man also died and was buried. In Hades, where he was in torment, he looked up and saw Abraham far away, with Lazarus by his side. So he called to him, ‘Father Abraham, have pity on me and send Lazarus to dip the tip of his finger in water and cool my tongue, because I am in agony in this fire.’ “But Abraham replied, ‘Son, remember that in your lifetime you received your good things, while Lazarus received bad things, but now he is comforted here and you are in agony. And besides all this, between us and you a great chasm has been set in place, so that those who want to go from here to you cannot, nor can anyone cross over from there to us.’ “He answered, ‘Then I beg you, father, send Lazarus to my family, for I have five brothers. Let him warn them, so that they will not also come to this place of torment.’ “Abraham replied, ‘They have Moses and the Prophets; let them listen to them.’ “‘No, father Abraham,’ he said, ‘but if someone from the dead goes to them, they will repent.’ “He said to him, ‘If they do not listen to Moses and the Prophets, they will not be convinced even if someone rises from the dead.’”

Sometimes we want miraculous miracles to happen to prove to ourselves that God is there. People will pray and ask God for him to do something crazy just so we can know He’s really there. We may do something like ask for a lot of money. Then if God gives it to us we can reassure ourselves that He is actually there. We may pray and ask God to send a lightning bolt in the middle of a parking lot, just to satisfy ourselves.

In Luke 16:19-31 it talks about a poor man named Lazarus and a rich man. Since Lazarus was given a name in this parable it shows that he was important. (Lazarus means trust in God). The rich man feasted sumptuously every day, whereas Lazarus begged for the crumbs from the rich man’s table. When both Lazarus and the rich man died, a great reversal happens. Lazarus is in heaven feasting with Abraham, and the rich man is in anguish in hell.

The rich man begins conversation and ask Lazarus to come and cool his tongue. Abraham answers by telling the rich man that he had a well life while Lazarus suffered. Then the rich man asks Abraham to warn his brothers by raising someone from the dead so they will believe. Abraham replies by telling him that God gave the prophets like Moses for people to trust.

Today we don’t have the prophet Moses just hanging around so we need to use God’s word to guide us. When we are doubting God, or our trust is failing, we can pick up the bible and there will be great hope for us lean on. God’s always going to be there, but if you’re ever just having a bad day you can pick up your bible and read the hope given to us. Since we believe God’s word, which tells us that Jesus is there for us, we can have this hope.

Have you ever felt like you needed to test God presence?

Did you resort to something other than the prophets in the bible?

Talk about how you can as a family read the bible together to overpass anything bad going on in your life.

7-8 grade devotion project by Sydney: Temptation

Luke 4:1-12 NIV

Jesus, full of the Holy Spirit, left the Jordan and was led by the Spirit into the wilderness, where for forty days he was tempted by the devil. He ate nothing during those days, and at the end of them he was hungry. The devil said to him, “If you are the Son of God, tell this stone to become bread.” Jesus answered, “It is written: ‘Man shall not live on bread alone.’ The devil led him up to a high place and showed him in an instant all the kingdoms of the world. And he said to him, “I will give you all their authority and splendor; it has been given to me, and I can give it to anyone I want to. If you worship me, it will all be yours.”  Jesus answered, “It is written: ‘Worship the Lord your God and serve him only.’ The devil led him to Jerusalem and had him stand on the highest point of the temple. “If you are the Son of God,” he said, “throw yourself down from here. For it is written: “‘He will command his angels concerning you to guard you carefully; they will lift you up in their hands, so that you will not strike your foot against a stone. Jesus answered, “It is said: ‘Do not put the Lord your God to the test.

 

This is the story of where Jesus was being tempted by the devil. Jesus was tempted three times. Every time the devil would tempt him he replied with words from the bible.

The first time Jesus was tempted the devil said ‘’If you are the son of God turn this stone into bread.’’ Jesus replied, ‘‘Not by bread alone shall any man live.’’ Jesus doesn’t mean the bread made with flour, yeast, and eggs, and all of those ingredients, he is talking about the spiritual bread, his body.

The second time Jesus was tempted the devil said to him, ‘‘ To you I will give all this authority and their glory, for it has been delivered to me and I will give it to whom I will. If you, then, will worship me, it will all be yours.’’ Jesus answered, ‘’ It is written, you shall worship the Lord your God, and him only shall you serve.’’

The third time Jesus was tempted the devil said to him, ‘’ If you are the Son of God, throw yourself down from here, for it is written, He will command his angels concerning you, to guard you, on their hands they will bear you up, lest you strike your foot against a stone.’’ Jesus answered, ‘’ It is said, you shall not put the Lord your God to the test.’’

You should try not to be drawn into the temptations of the devil and stay true to the words of God. When we are tempted, we need to trust him to help us with those temptations. Jesus knew the words of God to help him through, and we could also know some of the scripture to help us.

Prayer: Dear Lord, please help me not to be drawn into the temptations of sin. Amen.

7-8 Grade devo project by Mackensi: Are You Ready?

Luke 12:35-40 ESV

“Stay dressed for action and keep your lamps burning, and be like men who are waiting for their master to come home from the wedding feast, so that they may open the door to him at once when he comes and knocks. Blessed are those servants whom the master finds awake when he comes. Truly, I say to you, he will dress himself for service and have them recline at table, and he will come and serve them. If he comes in the second watch, or in the third, and finds them awake, blessed are those servants! But know this, that if the master of the house had known at what hour the thief was coming, he would not have left his house to be broken into. You also must be ready, for the Son of Man is coming at an hour you do not expect.”

When we were all younger, we have all had to wait for something that we really wanted, whether it was saving up money, or standing in a really long line. Waiting is sometimes really hard for people, especially when they have to prepare something prior to what they are waiting for, but in the end, it’s all worth it because you finally get what you were waiting for.

In our text, Jesus talks about keeping our lamps burning and staying dressed for action. In Jesus’s day, the people wore heavy cloaks that fell around their ankles. Whenever they got ready to work or serve, they would lift up the heavy cloaks. When Jesus is talking about staying dressed for action, he wants us to stay ready for his coming.

Next, Jesus talks about two feasts. The first feast is where the servants wait for the groom to come home from the marriage feast. In Jesus’s day, marriage feasts were often long, but they weren’t on a schedule so the servants wouldn’t know when the master would return. Jesus also talks about the coming of the son of man will be like a thief in the night. Jesus is going to come at a time that we won’t expect, so we need to stay ready, and be prepared.

Lots of times in our busy lives we worry about forgetting things, or we just worry in general. Jesus is trying to say, don’t be afraid I will be with you. We can trust and hope that Jesus will come again, and now all we have to do is stay ready and stay awake.

Some questions to ponder:

What are some ways that you can stay awake?

How many times have you found yourself drifting off?

7-8 grade devotion project By Meghan: Running the race

Hebrews 12:1-3

Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of  God.

Running a cross-country course is like having faith in Jesus. Sometimes we struggle through it. There can be obstacles in the way like trees, hills, temptations, and the devil. There is only one way we can get through; we must look to the finish line. Jesus is the finish line. When we get to the finish line, there is a great cloud of witnesses. They encourage us.

Jesus suffered through the course. He suffered the cross to forgive us from our sins. When we think of Jesus, we will not grow weary. We cannot get rid of the things that weigh us down. We need Jesus to get rid of them. Without Jesus, we would have no chance of completing the race.

Jesus is the founder and perfecter of faith. When he ran the course He had to endure more pain than we will have to. We should always keep out eyes on Jesus.

Questions

  1. How can we keep our eyes on Jesus?
  2. What kind of things way us down?