Gather around the table or cozy up on the couch and read this week’s part of The Big God Story.
To end your time together, pray a blessing over your child. (You can use the one below or make up your own!)
The Big God Story:
Before we get started, let’s pray and ask God to teach us today. Lead your child in a Prayer of Release to pause, be still, and ask the Holy Spirit to quiet his or her heart and mind.
[Insert child’s name], we just prayed to God. Do you think God is listening when you pray? Invite your child to respond; interact with his or her response. God is always listening because he is always with us and hears everything we say. Today in The Big God Story we’ll hear about a group of people who prayed for a man named Peter.
There once was a king named Herod. He was very mad. Many people were choosing to follow Jesus. He didn’t like this, not one little bit! Can you show me a mad face? Make a mad face with your child. That’s a very mad face. King Herod heard that Peter and many others were telling people about Jesus. He was angry and had his soldiers put Peter in prison. They chained Peter to two guards so he couldn’t get away.
The people who loved and followed Jesus heard what happened to Peter. They gathered together and started to pray. The people loved God so much. They knew it was very important for everyone to hear all about God’s love. Peter had a special job to do, and he couldn’t do it in jail! God’s people didn’t pray for just one minute. They didn’t pray for two minutes, or even three. They prayed all night long! Do you think God heard them praying? Invite your child to respond. Yes, He did.
While Peter was sleeping in the jail, a bright light shone on him. God had sent an angel to rescue Peter from jail! The angel woke Peter and told him to stand up. When Peter stood, the chains fell off him. The angel told Peter to get dressed because it was time to leave. Peter listened and followed the angel out of the prison.
Peter didn’t understand what was happening. But he continued to follow the angel. The angel led Peter out of the prison to safety. Then suddenly the angel was gone. Peter saw that he was free. He said, “It’s really true! The Lord sent an angel and saved me!” Encourage your child to clap and cheer with you.
Peter went to the house where his friends were praying. He knocked on the door. A girl named Rhoda came to the door. When she heard Peter’s voice, she was so excited that she forgot to let him in. That was so silly of Rhoda! She ran and told everyone inside the house that Peter was at the door. The people didn’t believe her. But Peter kept knocking. When they opened the door, they were so surprised to see him. Can you make a “shhh” sound using your finger over your mouth? Make a “shhh” sound with your child by putting your pointer finger in front of your lips. Peter motioned for his friends to be quiet. He wanted to tell them how God saved him. Right before Peter left, he told them to go and tell the other disciples what had happened.
Did God listen to the people when they were praying for Peter? Invite your child to respond. God was with the people when they were praying for Peter, and he was with Peter when he was in the prison cell. God heard his people pray, and he sent an angel to set Peter free. We can trust God. He always listens to our prayers.
Look your child in the eyes, say their name, and then speak this blessing to them: May you know that God loves you, that he’s always with you, and may you become all that he’s created you to be. May you love God with your whole heart for your whole life.