During the month of August, we’ve been exploring a spiritual exercise together each week- something you can practice together, as a family! These are practices that are designed to give attention to spiritual matters and in doing so, make your spirit strong. Just like we exercise our bodies, our spirits need exercise too!
SPIRITUAL EXERCISE- Practicing the Presence
Today’s Spiritual Exercise is Practicing the Presence!
Today, I invite you to try a little exercise together. Give each person a facial tissue and allow each person to give the tissue a scent. This may be by rubbing on a small amount of perfume, a few drops of vanilla extract, or a sprinkle of cinnamon. What scent is pleasing to you?
Pray together. You might try something like this:
God, Just as we smell this scent (pause and allow everyone to smell their tissue), remind us of your constant presence with us. Through the day, this smell may become weaker and weaker but you, O Lord, are constant. Your love endures forever. Through Jesus we pray, Amen
I invite you to carry this tissue with you today and each time you get a whiff of that scent, let it remind you that even though you can’t SEE the scent, it is there. Even when we don’t see God, God is with us. Just like there are reminders that the scent is there on the tissue, be looking for reminders that God is with you today. What might this reminder look like for you? Something you notice in nature around you? The love shown by a person close to you? I wonder what you will see when you are looking for signs of God’s presence!
SONG: My Creator and King
Your elementary-aged child may recognize this song as one we learned earlier this year. Do they remember any of the motions? See if they can teach the rest of your family!
As you sing, remember the REALITY that God is our KING & CREATOR!
BIBLE STORY: Jesus Walks on the Water
During the month of August, we’ve been thinking about Bible stories that reveal something about the spiritual world that may be unseen to us on a typical day, but in each of these stories we are reminded that there is more to life that what we see with our physical eyes, and our MIGHTY God sees ALL!
In today’s story, the disciples of Jesus were seeing what was right in front of them- THE BIG STORM! Sometimes we are like that too. We can see the big problems happening right in front of us and forget the REALITY that no matter what the problems are in this world, God is with us and is more POWERFUL.
TALK ABOUT IT: What are some big things this week that you’ve seen (like the storm)? (hard things in school, sickness in your family or neighborhood, frustrations in friendships, challenges at work?) Let each person share. What is 1 way that God has reminded you that this problem is not more POWERFUL than God? (encouragement from a friend, a passage from the Bible, help or a hug from a parent/child?)
In our Bible story today, Paul was transformed! In our Game, we’re going to pretend to transform into different animals. Choose a leader. The leader calls out an animal’s name and everyone else listens to know how to “transform”. Each time the leader calls out a new animal, everyone “transforms” into that animal- movements, sounds, and all! Take turns being the leader- and have fun!
TALK ABOUT IT:
CRAFT- Coloring Sheet
Materials: Printout of coloring sheet OR white paper (draw your own)
Download & print your copy HERE!
Color the foot on the water.
You can also draw your own version by (1) tracing your foot on white paper (2) Writing this passage around the foot- “Take courage! It is I. Don’t be afraid.” -Matt. 14:27 (3) Draw a picture inside the foot of a situation where you need courage to step out.
Close your time together with a prayer inviting God to give you courage to SEE the REALITY that God is more POWERFUL than any storm! ,
Have a wonderful Sunday!
Have fun together & play with water during a sink or float experiment like the one HERE!