YOU CAN HELP PEOPLE BE FRIENDS AGAIN. HERE’S HOW.
JESUS SAID PEACEMAKERS are so special that they will be called the children of God (Matthew 5:9)! It takes courage to be a peacemaker. Whenever you help people to sort out their arguments and make friends again, you are helping them to feel God’s love. The worship activities on the next few pages will help you to develop your secret peacemaking skills.
WHAT ARE YOU FIGHTING ABOUT?
Have you ever wondered what you fight about most? And how you could stop that fight next time around? Here are some things people fight about. Add some other arguments you have with your friends and family. Then write down one thing you could do differently the next time to stop the fight from getting worse.
What We Fight About: What I Could Try Next Time:
When we both want the same toy.
Being asked to do something I don't want to do.
When something seems unfair.
When someone messes with my stuff.
When someone say something I don't like.
When we both want to go first.
REMEMBER THE POWER OF ONE!
It takes only one person to start a fight—and any selfish person can do that! But it takes only one courageous, wise, and kind person to stop a fight! Which one do you want to be?
Read Proverbs 18:16. Talk with your family about this verse. Has anyone ever given or received gifts to make up after an argument? Think about the last argument you had. What nice thing could you do or what could you give to the other person to show that you want to be friends again? Draw your action or gift inside this gift box.
Read the story of Abigail in 1 Samuel 25. She prevented a big fight between her foolish husband and King David by giving peace-gifts.
How much food did she give to David and his soldiers? Write the numbers below:
_____ loaves of bread _____ measures (seahs) of roasted corn
_____ bottles of wine (grape juice) _____ clusters of raisins
_____ sheep ______ cakes of pressed figs
BE A SECRET PEACEMAKER!
Here are some things you can do to have fewer arguments. Circle all the ideas you want to try. Color in the heart after you have tried the idea and it helped.
Do kind things for others as often as you can. Eph. 4:32
Don't tease others or put them down. Rom. 12:10
Ask the Holy Spirit to help you to be a peacemaker. Gal. 5:22
Be strong and unselfish and let others go first. Luke 13:30
Say encouraging things. 1 Thess. 5:11
Talk to people kindly. Eph. 4:29
Smile. Prov. 17:22
Do something nice for another person. Rom. 12:17-21; Matt. 5:43-45
If someone else is playing with your favorite toy, play with something else for a while. No one will have fun if you fight about it! Rom. 12:18
Obey grownups quickly without complaining. Ex. 20:12
Say “thank you” to other people as often as you can. 1 Thess. 5:18
LISTENING AND SPEAKING
Learn this great Bible verse to help you to be a peacemaker:
“Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry.” James 1:19, NIV
"Everyone should be quick to listen, (Hold the bottom of your ears as if you are listening, and then run fast in one place.)
slow to speak (Walk slowly in place, opening and shutting your hand slowly next to your mouth as an action for speaking.)
and slow to become angry." (Walk even more slowly in place. Say the words more and more quietly and slowly. When you saw the word "angry," jump up in the air and say it loudly."
Practice this verse together with a family member and then talk about what it means. How does listening to other people help us to be good peacemakers?
THE LISTENING SECRET
One cool way to stop a shouting kind of argument is by putting James 1:19 into action and listening carefully to the other person. It sounds funny, but it can really work! Practice your good listening skills at home and see what happens!
• Listen to your friend. Let them know you’re really listening by repeating back to them what you heard. Say things like, “Let me just check that I’ve got that.” “So you’re saying that . . .” “OK, so when this happens you feel . . . ? Is that right?”
• Find out more. Ask questions such as, “Tell me more about that so I can understand it better.”
• Help your friend calm down by saying things such as, “That sounds tough. I’m really sorry you’re so frustrated and upset.”
• Do something kind: “Can I do anything to help you?”
• If you both want different things say, “OK, so you want this [describe what the person wants], and I want this [describe what you want]. How can we sort out our problem together? Or maybe we need to find a grownup to help us.”
PRAYING FOR PEACE
• Look through a newspaper or search the Internet to find a country where currently there is a war or conflict. Find out all you can about this country and pray for peace.
• If you know people who fight and argue a lot, pray for them too. Pray that they will find peaceful and kind ways to sort out their problems.
• Write your peace prayers on cardstock doves and hang them from a branch, or make a garland with them. Add Bible verses about peace too.
SORTING IT OUT
Here are some people in the Bible who disagreed, quarreled, or stopped being friends with each other. Find out what they fought about. Then discover how they solved their problems and made friends again.
Abraham and Lot (Genesis 13)
Isaac’s wells (Genesis 26:12-33)
Jacob and Esau (Genesis 25; Genesis 27:1-46; Genesis 32, 33) Joseph and his brothers (Genesis 37; Genesis 42-45)
• What do you like best about each of the stories?
• What is the most important lesson in each story for you?
• Which person in the story is most like you?
• What can you learn about being a peacemaker from each of these stories?