RHYTHM: What Happened When? – Revelation 5

Easter 4 Revelation 5Thursday before the 4th Sunday of Easter: Revelation 5:1-10

Reading: Revelation 5:1-10

The What Happened When?

Alright, let’s be real for a minute. This is me, the writer, talking to you, the reader. Call this a literary aside. I’m Kevin; I don’t know that we’ve met.

The challenge of doing lectionary devotions, particularly on the daily readings, is that sometimes the Revised Common Lectionary reaches all the way to the back of the spice cabinet and pulls out something we all forgot was there. Which can present some really unique texts. And remember, there’s 3 texts a day to choose from—so if I chose Revelation, you can bet one of the others was in Ezekiel.

I do a lot of writing for youth/children curriculum and Bibles. Sometimes I get first pick on which books I write for, and my standing response is pretty much, “Anything but Revelation and Leviticus.” We don’t have that luxury, however, when a kid comes out of left field with a question about a tricky text. Or worse, when we need to come up with an activity around one. Take today’s reading in Revelation 5 as an example: “Everybody grab some crayons and draw a lamb that’s been slaughtered but is somehow standing up.” Give them time to share their drawings. Sheesh.

One summer I had my high school do a kind of spontaneous Bible study, where we’d sit down with Bibles (and a good study Bible or two) and just choose a text and have at it. What did one of them pick for the first week? You guessed it; the story of the Levite’s concubine. It might sound like a nightmare evening, but that was one of our best times together.

It’s pretty natural to want to avoid the tricky stuff in scripture. Maybe you don’t feel qualified to speak to it. Maybe you feel like you can handle their first question but are concerned about whatever comes next. But don’t let yourself be intimidated by scripture. Your honesty about your own struggles can go a long way toward helping kids overcome the belief that they have to understand all of it before they can understand any of it.

For reflection:

When have you been asked something you couldn’t answer while leading a group? What happened next?

What parts of scripture do you struggle with privately? Are there things you don’t understand? Anything you disagree with?

Where do you turn to get your questions answered?


RHYTHM is a daily lectionary devotion series in development by Youthworker Circuit. YWC members also receive weekly curriculum sessions for Sunday’s readings. To subscribe to Youthworker Movement, click here. If you’re new to us, you might like to know more about RHYTHM. You’re also welcome to check out more of our devotions, or come visit us on Facebook!