“Lean into Sunday” is an invitation to explore the coming Sunday’s Gospel reading. Each week, families will have an opportunity to read, respond to, and live out the Gospel as a family.
Opening Prayer: Loving God, we pray that everyone feels respected and loved, just as you respect and love us. Amen.
Notes about the Gospel: This gospel passage is one of the toughest for families. Jesus was not only rejected by his townspeople, as many of those who rejected Jesus were kin. Why? Because Jesus returned a changed person with a greater reputation. He was now a famous preacher; he was no longer the traveling carpenter. They rejected Jesus because he didn’t fit into his family’s or town’s “pecking” order. Such “pecking” orders can have devastating results on social and family life, for they encourage disrespect.
Jesus and his disciples came to his hometown so he could teach in the synagogue. The people in the congregation were astounded. “Where is he getting all this? How does he know all that? Have you seen the miracles he’s done? Isn’t he a carpenter, Mary’s son? We know his whole family.” At that point they began to be offended by him. Jesus said to them, “No prophet gets any respect from their hometown; even among their own kin and in their own house.” He was amazed at how little they believed in him
- From “God’s Word, My Voice: a Lectionary for Children” by Lyn Zill Briggs
- I wonder how Jesus felt when his neighbors and family rejected him?
- I wonder why they didn’t accept him or what he had to say?
- I wonder what we could say to Jesus to let him know that we accept and love him?
- How can we show that we love and respect each other?
Go: Encourage respect with the following exercise.
Have family members write down (or draw) each other’s talents and dreams (one piece of paper per family member). Now, have family members write down their own talents and dreams. Present family members with the talents and dreams others see in them and have them compare these lists to their own. How are they the same? How are they different? Discuss your family’s findings and discoveries. End the discussion with a prayer for the growth of talents and dreams in your family. These talents and dreams can be the most precious things family members possess.
Bonus Coloring Page: Click the image below to access a printable PDF of the coloring page for this Sunday’s gospel. This page will also be available inside customized worship boxes on Sunday, July 4, 2021.