January 1st-5th, 2018

Day 1:  God is Father!

YouTube: No Longer Slaves

Opener:  Tell a great memory you have of your dad.

Matthew 3:15-17

Commentary:  When Jesus was baptized, God said "This is my Son who I love, and I'm so pleased with Him." Have you ever thought that God likes when you recognize him as Father?  He enjoys being your Father! He chose you and you chose Him. You are His child and He loves you.

Challenge:  All through today, acknowledge God as your heavenly Father.

Prayer Focus:  Thank God for making you his child.  Tell Him how grateful you are for His love.


Day 2:  God is Provider

YouTube:  You are My Portion

Opener:  How has God provided for you recently?

Matthew 6:25-27

Commentary  God loves you so much that he will provide for all your needs if you let Him.  This doesn't mean that you sit around and wait for things to land in your lap. You play an active role in what God has planned for you. God works in us and through us.  Pay attention to the direction that the Holy Spirit gives you.

Challenge:  Make a decision not to worry this week but trust God for that situation.

Prayer Focus: Thank the Father for all the blessings He’s given. Ask Him to show you His plans for your life. 


Day 3:  God is Merciful

YouTube: Rescuer

Opener:  Can you think of a time where you miraculously escaped an accident or trouble?  

Matthew 9:11-13

Commentary: Jesus was seen with people others thought were the lowest of the low.  He didn't care what they had done or what labels others had given them. He loves everyone and gives mercy to all. His mercy was good yesterday and it will be brand new tomorrow. 

Challenge:  In what ways have you experienced God's mercy?

Prayer Focus:  Thank God that even though we were sinners, his mercy never fails.  As for eyes to see like He does with eyes of mercy. 


Day 4:  God is Miraculous

YouTube:  God of Miracles

Opener: Which of Jesus miracles would you want to see?

Matthew 14:15-19

Commentary:  Our God is a God of miracles.  Even today He is willing and able to reveal Himself through miracles.  He wants to take your unbelief, your fears, your burdens, and sicknesses into something extraordinary.  Lean on Him and learn to trust Him completely.

Challenge: What miracles do you need to trust God with?

Prayer Focus:  Father, help me to trust the small things as well as the big things to Your care.  I don't just want to believe. I want to expect miracles in my everyday life because You are God!  


Day 5:  God is Available

Youtube:  Amazing Love

Opener: Why do you think people brought their kids to see Jesus?

Matthew 19:13-15

Commentary: At one point, Jesus' disciples tried to stop people from bringing children to Jesus, but he said to let them come anyway.  In Mark 10: 14 - 15, Jesus said that the kingdom of God is for those who will approach him with childlike faith. God is always available for His children, for those who trust in Him.

Challenge:  Are there areas in your life you have trouble trusting God in?  What steps of childlike faith can you take?

Prayer Focus:  Thank God for always being available, even when we sin or doubt.  Ask Him to help us trust Him fully.



December 25th-29th, 2017


Day 1: The Lesson of the Camel

YouTube: We Three Kings

Opener: Watch a youtube video about camels

Philippians 2:5-8

Commentary: The camel is not very beautiful, with its funny hump and knobby knees. Yet the camel is built to serve people. It’s the most useful beast in that climate and one of the first animals man has trained. Jesus didn't impress people by his looks but he made himself a servant. His servant attitude is something we all need to have. 

Challenge: Look for an opportunity to serve someone in your family today.

Prayer Focus: Thank God for teaching us by serving. Ask Him to purify our hearts to be more like Him.


Day 2: Gift of Gold

YouTube: Born Is The King (It's Christmas)

Opener: Do you have anything made of gold in your house?

Matthew 2:9-10

Commentary: We don't know the reason the wise men gave these specific gifts, but each gift can remind us of something about Jesus. The wise men told King Herod that they were looking for the King of the Jews so that they could worship Him. Gold represents royalty, a precious metal throughout history. Jesus is the King of Kings!

Prayer Focus: Remember today that you're speaking to the King above all other Kings. Glorify Him today.  


Day 3: Gift of Frankincense

YouTube: The First Noel

Opener: Each person in the family share one of your favorite smells

Hebrews 4:14-16

Commentary: Frankincense is a perfume that comes from the sap of a tree. In the Old Testament, the priests burned frankincense as worship to God. This perfume can remind us that Jesus is our Priest, the one who stands as a go-between between God and man. Jesus, who is fully God and fully man, made a way for us to get to heaven. 

Challenge: Pray for someone in need this week. If you can, pray with them.

Prayer Focus: Thank God for sending Jesus to be a mediator for us.


Day 4: The Gift of Myrrh

Youtube: O Holy Night

Opener: Is it interesting that at Christmas, we get gifts on somebody else's birthday?

Romans 5:6-9  

Commentary: Myrrh is the third gift of the wise men. After Jesus was crucified, he was wrapped in cloth saturated with myrrh and aloe. Myrrh reminds us that Jesus mission was to die for our sins. He made the way for eternal life for us.  

Challenge: What made the coming of Jesus such good news?  

Prayer Focus:  Thank Him that He laid down his life for you.


Day 5: Jesus has come

Youtube: Do You Hear what I Hear?

Opener: What was your best Christmas ever? Why?

Romans 11:33–36

Commentary: From His birth to His ascension, Jesus changed the lives of all who experienced Him. Because His love changes what it touches, He is still impacting our world. And through those of us who have been transformed by His love, He continues to reach the lost with His message of new life. Like the shepherds that first Christmas, we are His messengers.  

Challenge What is your story of how Jesus changed your life?  

Prayer Focus: Thank God for transforming your life and your family. Ask him to help in the new year.  



December 18th-22nd, 2017


Day 1: Lamb of God

YouTube: Oh Holy Night

Opener: Did you ever wish you could go back and erase something you've done?

John 1:29–31

Commentary: When we see a sheep, we can remember another name of Jesus. John the Baptist said he was "the Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world." By Jesus blood, not only are our sins washed away. He gives us power to change our nature. We can be totally free from sin!

Challenge: Think today about what it really means to be free in Christ Jesus.

Prayer Focus:  Thank God that Jesus paid the price for our sin. Ask Him to help you serve Him.


Day 2: The Door of the Sheepfold

YouTube: It Came Upon a Midnight Clear

Opener: If you had a pet sheep, what would you name it?

John 10:7-10

Commentary:  Jesus said he was the door of the sheepfold . There was a special kind of sheep pen in Jesus day where the shepherds kept their flocks at night. The pen was a circular rock wall with a small open entrance. The sheep would go into the pen, and the shepherd would lie across the opening. He became the door._ 

Challenge:  Understanding the sheepfold, what do you think Jesus meant that he was the door?

Prayer Focus:  Thank God for his protection and care for us.


Day 3 Angel: Glory to God

YouTube: Hark the Herald Angels Sing

Opener:  Do you know anyone who has seen an angel?

Luke 2:13–15

Commentary: The angels celebrated and said, "Glory to God in the highest." They were reminding us that Jesus was fully God. All of God's perfection and beauty and wonder was now born as a person. God's holiness, His love, His compassion was wrapped in cloth in the manger.    

Challenge:  When you think of Christmas, does your mind go to presents, food, decorations, or glorifying Jesus?

Prayer Focus:  Thank Jesus for leaving heaven to take on flesh and live among us.


Day 4: Peace on Earth

YouTube: The First Noel

Opener: What's your favorite thing to do to relax?

Romans 5:1–4

Commentary: The same angels that said "glory to God" proclaimed "peace on earth," as a result of Jesus birth. This peace is available to all of us, no matter what is happening around us. There is a peace that's bigger than our stresses and problems. It can only be found in the face of Jesus.

Challenge: Take some time to be alone with Jesus today. Let his peace fill your heart.  

Prayer Focus:  Thank God for the fruit of the Spirit, made real to us by our relationship with Jesus


Day 5: The Star of Bethlehem

YouTube: We Three Kings

Opener: How many constellations do you know? Would you notice if there was a new star?

Matthew 2:1–2

Commentary: I'm not sure how the Bethlehem star worked. How did the star rest above Jesus' house? God knew how to get the attention of the wise men from the East. He influenced the stars to bring foreigners to worship Jesus. God knows how to reach people and He will work so that all will have the opportunity to know Him.

Challenge: Choose a special person in your life who needs to know Jesus. Pray for them and ask God for ways to speak to them.

Prayer Focus: Thank God for making the way for strangers to come to Him. Pray for the lost in your family and friends.


December 11th-15th, 2017  


Day 1: Away in a Manger

YouTube: Away in a Manger

Opener: Where is the most uncomfortable place you've slept?

John 6:47-51

Commentary: Maybe the cow was confused about the baby asleep in his supper.  Maybe there's a reason Jesus slept in a trough for food. During his ministry, Jesus said that he was the "bread of life." You cannot live without eating, and you can't have eternal life without Jesus.

Challenge: Do you eat good things spiritually? Are you starving or living on junk food?

Prayer Focus: Thank God for eternal life.


Day 2: The Ox

YouTube: O Come All Ye Faithful

Opener: Do you like farms? Why or why not?

Isaiah 1:2-3

Commentary: The Bible doesn't mention an ox where Jesus slept, but because of this passage, an ox is always included in the nativity. In many Ukrainian villages, the cows walk themselves home each evening. They know their master and where they live. Sadly, many people who claim to be God's, have no relationship with Him or His son.

Challenge: Help make Jesus known. Grab some friends and go Christmas caroling.

Prayer Focus: Thank God for revealing who He is through Jesus. Commit to knowing Him more.


Day 3: 1st Shepherd

YouTube: Silent Night

Opener: What's on your Christmas list?

John 10:11-13

Commentary: God may have a special place in his heart for shepherds. Not only did He announce Jesus' birth to shepherds, but Jesus called himself the Good Shepherd. This reminds us of another characteristic of Jesus. Like a shepherd will give his life to protect the sheep, Jesus gave his life for us.

Challenge: When planning gifts for Christmas, think about how you can serve another person.

Prayer Focus: Thank God for Jesus and the gift he gave us on Christmas.


Day 4: 2nd Shepherd

YouTube: Joy to the World

Opener: Do you like surprise gifts? How do you feel when you unwrap an amazing surprise?

Luke 2:8-12

Commentary: When the shepherds watched their sheep, it seemed like an ordinary night. But then the wrapping of heaven was torn open, revealing God's glory. God's glory is the demonstrating of His character. The fullness of God is displayed in Jesus.

Challenge: Why do you think God's glory is usually hidden from human view?

Prayer Focus: Thank God that we could see Him clearly in Jesus. Ask Him to reveal Jesus through us.


Day 5: Sheep

YouTube: Mary Did You Know

Opener: Why do you think God compared us to sheep?

1 Peter 2:23-25

Commentary: I spent some time with sheep. They're not the smartest animals, but I made it a point to teach them my voice. Every time I brought veggie scraps, I called out to them. You know which sheep are the smartest? The ones who stay near the Shepherd. They come when He calls. 

Challenge: What are the benefits of being a sheep in God's flock?

Prayer Focus: Thank God that he carries us close to his heart. Draw close to Him and commit to listening to Him.



December 4th-8th, 2017

Day 1: Stable

YouTube: Oh Little town of Bethlehem

Opener: Are there any famous people (or anything famous) from your hometown?

John 1:10-12 New King James Version (NKJV)

Challenge: What would it mean to make more room for Jesus in your heart, schedule or home?

Prayer Focus: Thank the Lord for coming in humility. Ask him to reveal what He wants from you for Christmas this year.


Day 2: Angel Gabriel

YouTube: Angels We Have Heard on High

Opener: How have you seen angels depicted in movies or artwork?

Luke 1:26-33 NIV

Commentary: Gabriel must have been big. In the Bible, He appeared to three people: Daniel, Zechariah, and Mary. Daniel was so afraid that he was sick for days after. Gabriel always said, "Don't be afraid." Whatever happens in this life, we can be comforted to know that Jesus is coming. This is good news!

Challenge: How does it reassure you to know that Jesus is coming?

Prayer Focus: Remember that Jesus is coming a second time. Thank the God of all comfort for both visits from Jesus.


Day 3: Mary

YouTube: Breath of Heaven

Opener: What do you think went through Mary's mind when she heard the angel's words?

Luke 1:35-38 NIV

The true test of our faith and trust comes in our obedience to God.  He didn't promise great rewards. Having this special baby would mean she would feel pain, lose her reputation. People who heard her story might even call her crazy. But Mary offered herself up to the Lord to do his will.

Challenge: Are there people in your life whom God has chosen to use in surprising ways?

Prayer Focus: Praise God for choosing us for his plans. Offer yourself to Him for His benefit, not yours.


Day 4: Joseph

YouTube: What Child is This?

Matthew 1:18-25 NIV

Commentary: Joseph is often overlooked in the Christmas story but he was chosen just as Mary was. Joseph literally adopted Jesus as his own son. I know Mary's story was hard to believe, and God sent an angel again to tell him not to be afraid. He must have felt a huge responsibility, even fleeing with his family to Egypt to save his son's life.

Challenge: What difficult things is God asking of you? Are you willing to listen?

Prayer Focus: Thank God for and pray for our Fathers


Day 5: Donkey

YouTube: O Come, O Come, Emmanuel

Opener: What's the longest trip you've ever taken?

Luke 2:3-7 NIV

Commentary: We don't know how Mary and Joseph arrived in Bethlehem. A donkey isn't mentioned. But the donkey is considered a humble method of transportation. There was a prophecy about Jesus coming lowly on a donkey bringing peace to the nations. Jesus is the Prince of Peace.

Challenge: How do you represent the Prince of Peace at home, school and work?

Prayer Focus: Worship the Lord who brings peace. Ask Him to help you bring Jesus to your world.