Welcome to FaithBuilders!
FaithBuilders is an exciting way for people and for families to connect with each other at the end of each day, to share what is happening in their lives with each other, and to build bridges between their faith and what’s happening in their lives. FaithBuilders is a way for people of all ages to move through the Bible and to think about stories from the Bible that have been a part of the Christian faith for thousands of years. FaithBuilders is something that we can easily incorporate into our daily routines, and it is a daily faith practice that encourages us to talk with each other, to pray with each other about what’s happening in our lives, and to bless each other at the end of each day.
We are going to begin our journey, this year, by spending some time learning about the life of Jesus Christ. This is a great way to learn more about Jesus if you don’t know much about Him right now, and it’s also a great way for parents to introduce stories about Jesus to their children and teenagers. We’re going to be focusing upon only one story each week. And throughout the week, we are going to be pondering several questions that can help us to think more about what we believe more deeply and apply what we believe to our daily lives. If you get off-track, don’t worry about it! Just pick up with the next story when you get started again. This is about learning and growing with people who are an important part of your life.
You might want to use these FaithBuilders steps to help you get started: (1) take a few moments to simply “connect” with another person, or with your children, as bedtime approaches, to simply see how the day went; (2) spend a few minutes reading the story that’s been chosen for the week and talking about one (or more) of the questions that have been provided (or you might want to talk about something else that came into your mind as you read the story); (3) spend a few moments picking something (or even a few things) that you can pray about together; and then, (4) end your time together with a short blessing – realizing that your blessing is one of the most important things that you can offer to another person.
May God richly bless you as you make FaithBuilders a part of your daily routine, and as you continue your journey of faith toward wherever God is leading you.
Week 1 – Luke 1:26-38
• Do you think that God still has a special plan for our lives, and for the lives of the people that we know and love?
• If God has a special plan for our lives, how do we know what that plan is? (After all, God doesn’t always send angels that speak to us, right?)
• Mary was told that she was going to bring Jesus into the world. How have you brought Jesus into the world this week?
• It’s sometimes scary to do what you think God wants you to do. Where can you find strength and courage to do it?
• Why do you think the angel told Mary about Elizabeth?
Week 2 – Luke 2:1-7
• We all follow rules and laws that have been written by other people. Who writes the rules and laws that you obey?
• Rules and laws aren’t always easy to follow. It wasn’t easy for Mary and Joseph to obey the law and travel through the desert when Mary was ready to have a baby. Can you think of a time when it was hard for you to follow a rule or law? What was that like?
• At Christmas, we sometimes see manger scenes in homes, in churches and even in other public places. Why do people put up manger scenes at Christmas?
• The king told lots of people to go to Bethlehem. Can you think of a time when you were in a place with a lot of other people, when you needed to stand in line for a long time, or when you had to remain standing because there weren’t any seats left? What was that like?
• Lots of different things happen at Christmas: shopping, parties, decorating, singing, etc. How can you make sure that there is room for Jesus in your life and in your home this Christmas?
Week 3 – Luke 2:8-20
• Luke’s Gospel tells us that the shepherds “were filled with great fear” (Luke 2:9). What is something that you are afraid of? What does it feel like to be afraid?
• The angels told the shepherds, “Fear not!” (Luke 2:10) How can knowing that God is with you help you in times when you are afraid?
• We often call Jesus our “Savior.” What is something that you need to be saved from, right now?
• What is something that you can do on Christmas morning to help you to remember that Christmas is about Jesus? (FaithBuilders Idea: What would it be like to start the day on Christmas by reading Luke 2:1-20 as a family?)
• Why do you think the shepherds returned to their places of work “glorifying and praising God for all they had heard and seen” (Luke 2:20)? How will you return to school, or to work in the days following Christmas, this year?
Week 4 – Matthew 2:1-12
• Have you ever taken trip where you needed to sit in a car or an airplane for a long period of time? How do you think the person who was driving the car (or flying the airplane) knew where to go?
• Can you think of a way that God pointed you in the right direction one day? What was that like?
• Why do you think King Herod was “troubled” when he heard that a child, who was going to be the “King of the Jews,” was born?
• How do you think the Wise Men felt after they had been traveling for a long time and finally got to the place where they wanted to be?
• Why do you think King Herod wanted to know where the baby that the Wise Men were seeking could be found?
• Why do you think the Wise Men left “by another road”?
Week 5 – Luke 2:22-40
• How did your parents choose your name?
• Many people in the Lutheran Church are baptized when they are still babies. Why did your parents want to have you baptized? What are some things that your parents promised to do on the day you were baptized?
• What was it like to wait for Christmas this year? Why is it harder to wait for something “really big” (like the summer break from school – or a family vacation) than it is to wait for something that’s not “really big”?
• How does it feel when something happens that you’ve wanted to see happen for a long time? How do you think Simeon felt when he saw Jesus?
• Why do you think people come to worship? Why do you think Anna spent so much time praying?
Week 6 – Matthew 2:13-23
• Do you think God still talks to people and tells them what God wants them to do?
• If you believe that God still talks to people, what do you think the voice of God sounds like? How do you know that you’re really hearing a message from God?
• Why do you think that King Herod was so upset when he heard that another King had been born?
• Do you think people with a lot of power are sometimes afraid of other people who have a lot of power? Why?
• Why do you think bad things happen to good people? Do you think God decides to “zap” people from Heaven? Do you think people suffer because other people decide to do things that hurt them?
• What is something that you could do this week to help people to suffer less?