When we consistently use a “God-sized” lens to share God’s Word with our family, it broadens our children’s understanding of who God is and how He acts in our world. It also changes how our children view themselves, their blessings, and their purpose.
Sharing the Bible with our children through a “God-sized” lens does not have to be difficult. It just requires that we consistently frame every story with these truths:
- God is the main character of every story.
- God is always at work to make Himself known.
- God blesses His people for a greater purpose that includes others.
Bible Time Tip:
As your family explores God’s Word together, consider building in times when your children can get up and move. Climb up Mount Sinai with Moses, walk on water with Peter, or lower Paul down over the city wall in a basket. Intentional movement which is related to the Bible passage can increase learning and help your children remember what you discuss.
Family Bible Activity:
Jesus took His disciples into Caesarea Philippi, a region strongly identified with pagan religions. In this place, Peter confessed that Jesus was the Son of God. In response, Jesus announced,“I will build My church.” To the disciples, “church” meant small gatherings of Jewish worshipers. Jesus was talking about something different. His death and resurrection would open the way for Jews, Samaritans, and Gentiles to come to God by faith and become united as one group–the church. Later, Peter would join with God in opening “the door of faith” to the Jews at Pentecost in Acts 2, to the Samaritans in Acts 8, and to the Gentiles in Acts 10.
Read Matthew 16:13-20 with your family. Then do the following related activity.
Getting Ready: Open all of the doors in your house, including the closets and cabinets. Then invite your family to meet by one door.
Explain that God always planned for peoples from every nation and background to have a way to come to Him, but the nation of Israel believed that the doors to God’s love and mercy were closed to everyone but them. Invite you children to move from room to room, closing all the open doors. Share that when Jesus talked about building His church, He was sharing God’s heart and plan of open access to God for all peoples.
As a family, walk until you see the first closed door. Say, “God welcomes the Jews.” Invite a child to open that door. Go to the next closed door. Say, “God welcomes the Samaritans.” Invite a child to open that door. Say, “God welcomes all the Gentile nations.” Have your children move through the house, open all the doors, and then return. Explain that Jesus’ church is not a place, but people from all nations and time periods who have come to God through trusting in Jesus as their Savior.
Use a “God-sized” lens. How did Jesus’ explanation of “church” demonstrate the greatness of God’s love and concern for all peoples? Pray that God would help your family view the peoples of the world as potential members of God’s global Church.
(This Bible story activity is framed with a “God-sized” lens. For more stories and activities shared through a “God-sized” lens, download One Big Story for free!)