We Share Christ

How Shall We Love

Seventh Sunday of Easter, Year B

We need the opportunity to submit ourselves as individuals and as a community to the work of living in peace with one another, working together toward the flourishing of all people.

John 17:6-19, NIRV

Jesus Prays for His Disciples

6 “I have shown you to the disciples you gave me out of the world. They were yours. You gave them to me. And they have obeyed your word. 7 Now they know that everything you have given me comes from you. 8 I gave them the words you gave me. And they accepted them. They knew for certain that I came from you. They believed that you sent me. 9 I pray for them. I am not praying for the world. I am praying for those you have given me, because they are yours. 10 All I have is yours, and all you have is mine. Glory has come to me because of my disciples. 11 I will not remain in the world any longer. But they are still in the world, and I am coming to you. Holy Father, keep them safe by the power of your name. It is the name you gave me. Keep them safe so they can be one, just as you and I are one. 12 While I was with them, I guarded them. I kept them safe through the name you gave me. None of them has been lost, except the one who was headed for ruin. It happened so that Scripture would come true.

13 “I am coming to you now. But I say these things while I am still in the world. I say them so that those you gave me can have the same joy that I have. 14 I have given them your word. The world has hated them. That’s because they are not part of the world any more than I am. 15 I do not pray that you will take them out of the world. I pray that you will keep them safe from the evil one. 16 They do not belong to the world, just as I do not belong to it. 17 Use the truth to make them holy. Your word is truth. 18 You sent me into the world. In the same way, I have sent them into the world. 19 I make myself holy for them so that they too can be made holy by the truth.

New International Reader's Version (NIRV) Copyright © 1995, 1996, 1998, 2014 by Biblica, Inc.®. Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.


Toy telephone, cell phone, and other communication tools.


(Hold up the toy telephone.) Have you ever seen a young child play with one of these? Maybe you remember playing with one of these yourself.

(Hold up the cell phone.) Have you ever used one of these to make a call? (Allow children to respond.) When we want to talk to someone, we often just pick up a phone and call them. Who is the last person you spoke to on the phone? (Allow children to answer.) That’s how people in the world talk to one another, isn’t it? We just pick up the phone and call or text.

Today’s scripture passage involves Jesus showing us a unique way to communicate. Jesus teaches us how to talk to God. What do we do when we want to talk to God? (Allow children to answer.) That’s right; when we communicate with God, we pray. We don’t pick up a cell phone and ask “Siri” to call or text God.

Jesus teaches us, his followers, how powerful prayer is in our life. Prayer will change our lives; prayer is powerful enough to help us get through difficult challenges in life. Actually, Jesus teaches us by showing us how to pray. He gives examples of how we can talk to God. When do you talk to God? Do you pray when things are going well? Raise your hand if you pray to God when things are going great. (Allow children to raise their hands.) Do you pray when things seem difficult? Raise your hand if you pray when things seem tough and you’re having a tough time. (Allow children to raise their hands.)

In this passage of scripture, Jesus even prays for us! This passage, from the Gospel of John, has Jesus praying for his disciples. We know that a disciple is a follower of Christ. So, Jesus is praying for us, when he says. in John 17, in the second half of verse 11, “Keep them safe so they can be one, just as you and I are one.” Jesus knew that life would be difficult. He knew that we would face many challenges and difficulties during our lives. So, Jesus prayed that God would protect and comfort us. Do you pray to God for protection and comfort? (Allow children to respond.)

Knowing that Jesus prayed for us brings us joy. There is joy in knowing that we also can pray to God in the same way that Jesus did. We can be honest with God when we pray. Are you honest with God when you pray? (Allow children to answer.)

Have you ever wanted to pray but didn’t have anything to say to God? Or maybe you felt that you couldn’t find the right words to say to God? I have felt like that before. We should never feel that we have nothing to say to God. We can talk to God anytime, anywhere, about anything! God wants to hear from us. Sometimes, we might have trouble praying. Sometimes, we are so happy, sad, angry, or even afraid that words don’t come from our mouth. We feel that we don’t know what to say or how to say it.

Do you want to know something really important? That’s okay; because even when we can’t find the words to say, God knows exactly what is on our minds and in our hearts! The Spirit of God is always with us. Everyday! All the time! God is with us in every moment where we feel overwhelming joy and, in every moment, where we feel deep sadness. God knows our hearts, and from our hearts, our prayers are offered to God. And God ALWAYS knows what we are trying to say.

Doesn’t that bring you joy? God loves us so much that God hears our prayers – both the ones we speak from our mouths and the ones that we cannot put into words!


God, we thank you for Jesus. We thank you for Jesus teaching us how to pray. Give me the words to say. But when I can’t find the words, help me to pray, knowing that you hear my prayer. You hear words that I cannot even say out loud. God, you know what is on my mind and what is in my heart. Thank you for always listening! Amen.

In This Series...

Fifth Sunday of Easter, Year B - Lectionary Planning Notes Sixth Sunday of Easter, Year B - Lectionary Planning Notes Seventh Sunday of Easter, Year B - Lectionary Planning Notes


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In This Series...

Fifth Sunday of Easter, Year B - Lectionary Planning Notes Sixth Sunday of Easter, Year B - Lectionary Planning Notes Seventh Sunday of Easter, Year B - Lectionary Planning Notes