It was a very busy time for Jesus' helpers. They had received a wonderful power from God—the baptism of the Holy Spirit. Now they were using that power to do God's work. Peter was one of God's busy helpers. He knew that people everywhere needed to know about Jesus. He traveled from city to city telling people that Jesus loved them.
One day Peter was in the city of Lydda. There he met a man who had been sick for a long time. The man had palsy and could not walk. He had been in bed for eight years! Peter went to the man and told him that Jesus would make him well. Then he told the man, "Arise and make your bed."
At once the man got up! He could walk! He was well! He had been healed!
All the people in the city heard about the man. Everyone was so happy for him. Now they wanted to know Jesus. So they asked Jesus to forgive their sins and make them happy.
There was another city nearby called Joppa. In that city there lived a Christian woman named Dorcas. Dorcas worked all day long doing good things for many people. She made coats and other clothes for people who were too poor to buy them. Everyone loved Dorcas because of her kind ways.
One day Dorcas got very sick. She was so sick that she died. The people of Joppa were sad at the loss of their dear friend.
Some of Jesus' followers had heard that Peter was nearby in the city of Lydda. Quickly, they sent two men to ask Peter to come to Joppa.
Peter returned with the men at once. When he entered the house, he went to a room upstairs. There Peter saw many of Dorcas' friends. The ladies cried while they showed him some of the beautiful clothes Dorcas had made.
Peter told all the people to leave the room. When they were gone he knelt down and prayed. We don't know what words Peter said, but we know he was talking to God. He wanted Dorcas to be alive again. After Peter was through praying, he turned to Dorcas and said to her, "Arise." First, she opened her eyes! And then, when she saw Peter, she sat up! He took her hand and helped her to stand. Then he called all her friends and showed them that Dorcas was alive again. They were all so happy to see her! What a wonderful miracle God had done for their friend!
All the people who lived in the city of Joppa heard about this wonderful miracle. They could see that God had given power to Peter. Many of those people gave their hearts to God when they heard what he had done for their friend Dorcas.
This lesson deals with how Peter worked for God. Help your child to understand that when we do good things for others, we are working for God just as Peter was. Discuss and make a list together of things a child can do for Jesus.
Here's an idea to help reinforce the concept of doing good. Early in the week, purchase an inexpensive cardboard puzzle (not too many pieces). Each time your child does something especially good, remind him that it is a part of working for Jesus. Reward him with a piece of the puzzle and encourage him to earn all the pieces so that he can have a complete puzzle to put together.