Spring 2016 Devotionals

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1 Spring 2016 Devotionals Coaches: Each week, these devotionals will help build your team s understanding of God s plan for salvation. The devos help break down John 3:16, as players learn that God loves us so much that, God gave His son Jesus. If we believe, then we receive the gift of eternal life. Your group time at each practice should encourage the players to talk about their own beliefs and help you get to know each of them personally. Use this insight to help you guide discussion and offer children a choice to follow Jesus before the end of the season.

2 God Loves Devo 1 Read: Ephesians 2:4-5 4 But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, 5 made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions it is by grace you have been saved. Have you ever loved something so much that you thought about it all the time or never wanted to let it go? Maybe it is your parents, your favorite toy or video game, or maybe it is your best friend. No matter how much you love these things, it does not compare to how much God loves and cares for each and every one of you! Ask: Why does God love us so much? Have you ever wondered why God loves you so much? God s love for you starts way back at creation! When God created the world, he had you in mind. Isn t it a good feeling to know that the same God that created the whole world loves and cares for you? Ask: How do we know that God will always love us? We can know that God will always love us because He has promised us that He always will. Romans Chapter 8 teaches us that nothing can separate us from the perfect love of God. No matter what you do, God will always love you! Main Idea! God s loves us so much more than we can ever imagine! His love for us will never stop!

3 God Loves Devo 2 Ask: Think about a time you tripped and fell down. What happened? Did other people see you fall? Did you hurt anything? It s NO fun to trip and fall. But tripping and falling doesn t just happen with your feet! You can trip and stumble in life too. Sometimes you might try something new and it doesn t work out the way you d hoped. Sometimes you expect one outcome after working hard, but you get the opposite instead. It s easy to feel discouraged and want to give up. Read: Psalm 37: If the Lord is pleased with the way a man lives, he makes his steps secure. 24 Even if the man trips, he won t fall. The Lord s hand takes good care of him. This verse reminds us that, with God s love, we can keep going. He will take care of us if we choose to trust in Him. When you face a hard situation, refuse to quit and think of God s love instead. Because God IS with you. Always.

4 God Gave Devo 3 Discuss: How do you feel about receiving gifts? What is the greatest gift that you have ever gotten? How did it make you feel when you received it? We have all been given gifts that made us so happy. But usually the happiness wears off after a while. We forget about the gift we have given and move on to whatever the next toy or video game that we want. What if we could be given the greatest gift of all!? What do you think it would be? Actually, God has already given us the greatest gift that we could ever receive, Jesus! Ask: Why is Jesus the greatest gift that we could ever receive? Jesus is the greatest gift of all time because God sent him to be a sacrifice for our sins. Romans 6:23 says For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. Jesus died for our sins so that we may have eternal life! KNOW: God has given us so much through His son Jesus!

5 God Gave- Perfection Devo 4 Being perfect is rare in sports. The 2007 New England Patriots played a perfect season, but does anyone remember what happened to them in the Super Bowl? Do you have a guess for how many perfect games have been played in Major League Baseball (take time to explain if necessary)? (only 23 as of March 2016) A perfect game in baseball is hard. A perfect season can be even harder. But can you imagine trying to live perfect for an entire lifetime? Only one person in history has ever succeeded, and it s impossible for us. Romans 3:23 tells us that all have sinnedevery one of us. We are not perfect. But in 2 Corinthians 5:21, we read that Jesus had no sin- He is perfect. Yes, the Patriots lost the Super Bowl, and they will never have a chance to go back and play that game over again. (Discuss) How does Jesus offer us a chance to be perfect again?

6 We Believe Devo 5 Discuss: What do you think it means to believe in something? What are some things that you might believe in? (God, Jesus) Being able to believe in something is a really big step in life! Let s take a closer look at what it means to believe in Jesus. Have you ever thought about why you should believe in Jesus? It s not because your friends are doing it, or your parents want you to believe, or that it s the right thing to do. We should believe in Jesus because He loves us so much that he died to forgive us of our sins. Believing in Jesus means that you have to have faith in Him. Having faith means that you trust Jesus to lead and direct your life! Have you ever heard the saying actions speak louder than words? The same saying can be used to describe our faith in Jesus! Having faith in Jesus is more than thinking about doing it. It requires action! James 2:17 In the same way, faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead. Believing and having faith in Jesus should be followed by taking action! Pray and ask God to help you live out your faith through action! What are some ways you can take action with your faith?

7 We Believe Devo 6 Read: Hebrews 12:2-3 2 Let us keep looking to Jesus. He is the author of faith. He also makes it perfect. He paid no attention to the shame of the cross. He suffered there because of the joy he was looking forward to. Then he sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. 3 He put up with attacks from sinners. So think about him. Then you won t get tired. You won t lose hope. Discuss: What did Jesus do for us? What happened after Jesus died? Where is Jesus now? When we get discouraged and want to give up, what should we do? Believing in Jesus starts with knowing what he has done for us. Jesus endured the most awful pain that anyone has ever faced. Can you imagine the kind of perseverance it took to face something like that? He knew that if he persevered, you would not be separated from God. He didn t think about the pain. He thought about the joy that was to come- the chance for all who believe in him to have a right relationship with God.

8 We Receive Devo 7 So far this season, we have talked about how much God loves us, what God has given us, and why we should believe and have faith in Jesus. God loves, God gave, and we believe. The next step is receiving Jesus into our heart. Receiving Jesus into your heart is as easy as abc. You must admit that you are a sinner, believe that Jesus is God s son, and confess with your mouth that Jesus is the Lord of your life! Once you receive Jesus into your heart, He will never leave you and you get to spend an eternity in heaven praising God! Isn t that good to know!? Receiving Jesus into your heart also means that your life here on earth should change. You should want to live a life that glorifies God and tell others about what God has done for you through his son Jesus! Ask: Your life will change so much after receiving Jesus as Lord of your life! How has Jesus already changed your life?

9 We Live Devo 8 Read: John 15:5 I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing. Imagine the biggest tree that you have ever seen. What was the strongest part of that tree? (Trunk) What would happen to a branch if it broke off? (Die/ wither) What would happen if you stopped playing (soccer, baseball, softball) for a long time? You definitely won t get better, and you might even get worse. We need to practice our faith, and stay connected to Jesus. Just like a tree branch needs to stay connected to it s trunk. (Discuss) What are some ways that you can stay connected to Jesus? How can you live out your faith?

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