gift of gathering

All across our country at Thanksgiving, families and friends gather around dinner tables giving thanks for everything God has given them. They eat turkey, mashed potatoes, sweet potatoes, stuffing, vegetables, and yummy pumpkin pie. They share stories about family, about what has happened to them during the year, and celebrate together for the blessings God has given them.

Jesus did the same thing. He went to wedding dinners to join others who gathered to celebrate marriages. He gathered His disciples to eat and talk and share the love of God. One day He even did a great miracle and fed thousands of people who had gathered to hear Him preach, even though there were just five loaves of bread and two fish to feed the whole crowd.

But God doesn’t want us to gather just on holidays. He wants us to gather with other Christians as much as possible because that is how we grow in our faith. That’s why going to church, Sunday school, Awana® club, or vacation Bible school is so important. That’s where our pastors and teachers walk us through the Bible and show us God’s great love. Compassion kids around the world also gather to learn about Jesus.

The Bible tells us that gatherings are when God really shows up. God loves it when we learn and pray together. Jesus said: “Again, truly I tell you that if two of you on earth agree about anything they ask for, it will be done for them by my Father in heaven. For where two or three gather in my name, there am I with them” (Matthew 18:19-20).

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Matthew 14:13-21

  • What gifts did Jesus offer to the 5,000 people gathered to hear Him speak?
  • What can you share with others?
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  • Start a family prayer journal. Write down your prayer requests, pray as a family, and then write down God’s answers.
  • If you don’t already go to a Bible study, talk to your parents about starting one with some of your friends.
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  • Thank our heavenly Father for church and getting the chance to know Him better.
  • Thank God for hearing your prayers.
  • Pray for sponsored kids around the world who gather to learn about God. Pray that they would know Him better each day.