Thirty Days in Philippians 2 for Busy, Busy Mamas, Day 2: Context

Phil2Day2ThemesWhen we receive a letter (or read an email) from someone we love, we read the entire letter. We might initially skim its pages, looking for particular bits of news or endearing passages, but we will always go back and carefully read the entire letter to savor all its news. We don’t just open a letter, pick a few random paragraphs to read, and then set it aside.

We don’t want to “open” Paul’s letter to the Philippians and just read a few isolated paragraphs of it either. Even though we will be focusing primarily on chapter 2, we need to read the entire letter at least once during our study. That’s what we will do today! So this lesson may take a bit more than our allotted five minutes. (Don’t get discouraged! It only takes about five minutes to read the entire book. Every lesson won’t be this long! And…tomorrow is catch-up day, if you don’t finish today.)

Assignment: Pray for the Holy Spirit’s guidance. Then read the entire book of Philippians. When you have finished, do the following:

  • Assign a title to each chapter of the book. Your titles should reflect the themes of each individual chapter.
  • Write a short one-paragraph summary of the entire book. What is its main message? What main ideas was Paul sharing with the believers in Philippi?
  • Note any truths that especially stood out to you as you read.

For your children:

(Note: Adapt this lesson to fit the ages of your children. You may need to do all the writing, and you may want to select only two or three passages, or even just one, to read.)

Today we are going to pretend to be Paul writing his letter to the Philippian believers. While your children  help him write, they will hear some of the important messages Paul included in his letter.

You will need your Bible, an envelope, a piece of paper, and a pencil or pen.

  • Give one child an envelope and have him “address” it to “The believers in Philippi”.
  • Give another child a piece of paper and a pencil or pen. He will play the role of Paul for the next couple minutes. (If your children are young, you  may want to do the actual writing for them.)
  • Read Philippians 1:21 aloud and discuss what it means.
  • Have “Paul” write a short sentence that summarizes the message of the verse. (Discuss this together as a family, and then, if necessary, help him know what to write – or write it for him.)
  • Pass the paper on to another child.
  • Read Phil. 2:3-4 aloud, discuss it, and have the new “Paul”, with the help of the entire family, write a summary sentence about this passage.
  • Pass the paper on, read Phil. 2:5-11, discuss it, and write a new summary sentence.
  • Repeat this sequence with Phil. 3:3-7, Phil. 3:13-14, Phil. 4:4-7, and Phil. 4:11-13.
  • When you have finished, have the last “Paul” fold the paper up and put it into the envelope and seal it.
  • Choose someone to play the role of Epaphroditus. Have him carry the letter all through the house (or even outside, if you would like) while the rest of you gather together on a sofa to play the role of the Christians in Philippi. (Sing a song while you wait!)
  • Epaphroditus can finally arrive in Philippi (your living room), knock on the door (or wall) and deliver “Paul’s letter” to the Christians there.
  • Answer the “door”, joyfully greet Epaphroditus (explain to the children that he almost died when he was with Paul!), and then read Paul’s letter together!

 

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5 Comments

  1. Pam, I prayed last night that God would help me to wake up before the children, and early enough, to study in God’s word. He did! I’ve prayed this same prayer so many times and I never woke up. He must have been telling me to just rest. Now is the right time for delving into his word I guess. 🙂 His way makes me laugh.

  2. I am so, so thankful for these. I do pray you put this one in a book like you did with Colossians 3. It is so helpful to have that at my fingertips and I know I would love to go through it again. Thank you SO much for training us how to study the Bible on our own.
    I pray one day I will be able to do the same for other women and especially my own children. Sure, we read the Bible, but there is something special about really digging in and studying it, meditating on it, and allowing it to become a real part of you. So, thank you so much. xo

  3. Was super excited to see that you were doing Phil. 2. This is the passage that my dc are memorizing this year in school. Thanks for all the time you’ve put into this.

  4. Hi.. i recently subscribed to Doorposts blog… and i have become a huge fan of ur ministry.. I am a mother of 4.. my eldest son is 5 year old.. second son is 2 year old.. and i have a twins who are 1 year old… and as i read these lessons of urs and the activities to be done along with your children… I just can’t wait for them to grow up and join in with me for studying… Thanx a lot for listening to God for us…

  5. This has been a great two days of studying! My children have really enjoyed the role playing and today had fun writing the letter. My son is 7 and my daughter is 4 so she was able to practice writing a little bit. Then she wanted to keep reading the letter again and again 🙂 I also woke up earlier than my children today and had a full hour in the Word! Amazing 🙂 Thank you Pam for this great study!