Advent-Day 18-Jonah

Hi all.

This month we are learning about God, God’s son Jesus and Jesus’ earthly family.

Today’s story is about a prophet named Jonah. You can read about him in the Bible in the book called Jonah and our complete lesson can be found here. Below is a shortened account.

Jonah was a prophet (that means he talked to God and told the people what God wanted them to know.)

One day God asked Jonah to go tell the people of Ninevah to STOP IT! They made a lot of bad choices and if they didn’t stop, God would destroy the whole city.

But Jonah didn’t want to go there…he was too scared because those people were BAD.

SO instead, he got on a boat going the other way. But you can’t hide from God and Jonah ended up getting swallowed by a big fish. He lived in the fish’s belly for 3 days where he prayed to God and asked God to forgive him for disobeying. Jonah promised if God would get him out of the fish, that he WOULD go to Ninevah and take the people God’s message.

So the fish spit  Jonah up onto the beach and Jonah went to Ninevah. He told the people to stop making bad choices and you know what?! THEY DID! They started being nice and they followed God…so everyone should have been happy!

But Jonah wasn’t. He wanted God to destroy the city! But God said, “I forgave you! Why should I forgive them?” You see, God loves ALL people…not just the Israelites, and He wants to forgive all people. We all sin and make bad choices sometimes and that keeps us apart from God. But God wants to live in PEACE with us. That means together, not fighting. Jonah couldn’t understand why God would forgive such awful people…but he forgot that we ALL need God’s forgiveness and peace.

God is peace. (Judges 6:24, Is 9:6) He wants all of us to obey Him and live in peace with Him. But God won’t make anybody obey Him. We have to choose whether we will follow God or not. Our sin keeps us away from God, but God wants us to be WITH Him…so He sent His son Jesus to come to earth, not to punish us, but to die FOR us because He loves us. (John 3:16).

When the angels came to the shepherds in the field, they said “Glory to God in the highest, peace on earth, goodwill to men.” God did not send Jesus to punish us, but to bring peace…to bring us back to God.

Bible story: Jonah

Attribute of God: Peace

Jesus’ birth story: The angels announce peace

Craft:

Side one of our ornament today is a big fish.

Our text reads: Jonah learned about God’s forgiveness and peace. Jonah

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Side two of our ornament is a dove with white feathers glued on.

Our text reads: Jesus brought peace to all men. Judges 6:24, Luke 2

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Thanks for joining us! Love to you all!

Advent-Day 16-David

Welcome again!

This month we are learning about God, God’s son Jesus, and Jesus’ earthly family.

The next person in Jesus’ family after Ruth and her husband had a boy named Jesse, then Jesse had sons, one of which was named David.

Our lessons can be found here and here. In the Bible, David’s stories cover from 1 Samuel 16-2 Samuel and the book of Psalms.

David was just a boy when God first chose Him. And David was a shepherd. A shepherd is someone who takes care of sheep. He would feed them, make sure none of them were lost or chased by bigger animals. David had to fight off a couple of big animals and that helped get him ready to fight the giant Goliath later.

One day, God would choose David, “just” a shepherd to lead His people, Israel. Being a shepherd was probably good practice for leading all of Israel. He took care of the people and showed them how to love God. God loved David very much and was very happy that he took good care of the people.

The Bible tells us (1 Peter 2:25, Psalm 23) that God is Our shepherd. He cares for us, protects us and leads us.

So when Jesus was born, there were shepherds in the fields, taking care of their sheep (it was night time then and even then they had to watch the sheep and make sure they were ok.) The angels came first to the shepherds (not the kings, not the fancy rich people…but to the shepherds) and told them that a Savior had been born and that He was the Messiah, Christ the Lord.

The shepherds were scared, but they ran to see baby Jesus and then they ran and told EVERYONE the good news!! They were so excited that Jesus was here! Nobody quite knew yet what kind of King Jesus would be (that He would die for all our sins) but the shepherds believed!

 

Bible Story: David, the shepherd

Attribute of God: Shepherd

Jesus’ birth story: the shepherds learn of Jesus’ birth

Craft:

Side one of our ornament is a shepherd. We made him using a circle marker for the head and then we drew on a face. We gave him some clothes and used a toothpick for his staff (a big stick the shepherds would use to lead the sheep around). Then we glued on some marshmallows to be little sheep. (You could also use pom poms or cotton balls).

Our text reads: David was a shepherd. 1 Sam 16, 2 Sam 5, God is our Shepherd. 1 Peter 2:25, Psalm 23IMG_0438

Side two of our ornament today is three surprised shepherds looking up at an angel. We again used circle markers to make all the heads and we drew surprised faces on the shepherds and (it was) a happy face on the angel. We gave the angel wings made from a cut up muffin/cupcake liner.

Our text reads: The angels appeared to the shepherds. Luke 2

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Thanks again for joining us. Love to you all!

Advent-Day 15-Saul

Hi all!

This month we are learning about God, God’s son Jesus and Jesus’ earthly family.

The man we will learn about it today is named Saul. His story can be found in 1 Samuel (chapters 9/10 for today) and our full lesson can be found here.

The people of Israel were now living in the land God promised them and they wanted a king! They wanted somebody to be in charge (they had forgotten that GOD was really in charge). So they asked for a king and Samuel said God had picked a man named Saul.

Saul wasn’t super strong, or important…but God picked Him. He ended up doing some great things as king…and some not-so-good things. Did you know that even KINGS make mistakes sometimes?!

The Bible tells us in 1 Corinthians that God doesn’t always choose the “fanciest” or “best.” If He chose the most important people, then everyone would think THEY had done great things, not God.

Everyone thinks a king should have fancy clothes and a fancy throne and be very very big and important. God is in charge of ALL things. He can do ALL things and He is over ALL things, but He also loves us, takes care of us and is more like a helper than a very fancy sit-on-his throne-and-yell-at-people-all-day-King. (Zecariah 9:9, Phil 2:6-7, Matt 20:28).

So when baby Jesus (God’s son…He was a man but still God too), came to us, He wasn’t born in a fancy castle. All the people thought an earthly king was coming and that He would be strong and fancy and important. And instead, God came as a tiny baby, in a barn. He was and is the BEST King we could ever hope for. (But we’ll learn more about that in the winter months and through Easter.)

His mommy wrapped him up and there was no crib in the barn, so she put him in a manger. (Which is a feeder where the animals would get their food). The animals would eat from the manger and the Bible tells us that the words of Jesus are like food for us! They help us grow and be strong!

It wasn’t what everyone thought would happen, but it was just the way God wanted it to happen. Little baby Jesus came to love.

 

Bible story: King Saul

Attribute of God: our King

Jesus’ birth story: Manger

 

Craft:

Side one of our ornament is a crown. (You can decorate it anyway you’d like).

Our text reads: King Saul was Israel’s first king. 1 Sam 9/10, God is our King. Zec 9:9

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Side two of our ornament is a manger made from cutting out a manger shape and gluing on some cereal to look like hay.

Our text reads: King Jesus slept in a manger. Luke 2

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Thanks for joining us. Love to you all!

Advent-Day 14-Samuel

Welcome again!

This month we are learning about God, God’s son Jesus and Jesus’ earthly family tree.

The next person we will learn about is Samuel. (This will be an abbreviated story). Our full lessons can be found herehere and here. Or you can read about Samuel in the first 10 chapters of the book called 1 Samuel in the Bible.

Hannah was a woman who really REALLY wanted to be a mommy. She prayed and prayed and asked God to let her be a mommy. She promised if she had a baby, she would give him back to God to love God and serve Him. One day, when Hannah and her husband were visiting the temple (church), the High Priest Eli saw Hannah praying. She was praying and crying so much that he thought she was crazy! He asked her what was going on and she said, “I’m not crazy, sir, and I haven’t done anything wrong, I’m just REALLY REALLY praying that God will let me have a baby!”  (She was afraid she might be in trouble!)

God told Eli to tell the woman that she would be given what she had asked for. And she DID have a baby, named Samuel. When he was big enough, she brought him back to the temple to learn about God and to serve God.

Samuel grew up to be a judge over the people and help make important decisions. The Bible tells us that the High Priest would talk to God for the people. He would ask God to forgive them or to help them. Samuel talked to God a lot too, and God even told him who Israel’s first king would be!

 

In Hebrews 3-4, the Bible says that Jesus is our High Priest. He leads us, teaches us about God, and intercedes (that means talks to God) for us. He is a good and nice leader and we can talk to him about anything. We don’t have to be scared to talk to God. Hannah might have been worried to tell Eli what was wrong, but we don’t have to worry about telling God anything. Jesus talks to God about us too! And He asks God to forgive us and love us and take care of us.

 

Now, when we remember about Jesus being born…remember Mary and Joseph were sleeping the barn?! And do you know what happened in that stinky barn? Baby Jesus was born!!! Our Lord, God, the best in the whole world, our High Priest…was born in a stinky barn. (But you can be sure God has a reason for that!!) Baby Jesus was here!!

 

Bible story: Samuel

Attribute of God: High Priest

Jesus’ birth story: Jesus is born!

Craft:

Side one of our ornament today is an ephod (the fancy apron the High Priest wore). We cut out and glued on some fabric in an apron shape and then added some shiny jewels.

Our text reads: Baby Samuel was a gift from God. Jesus is our High Priest. 1 Sam 2-3, Heb 4

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Side two of our ornament is baby Jesus! We used the same fabric from side one and made His blanket then gave Him a happy face.

Our text reads: Baby Jesus is born! Luke 2

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Our current tree front and back:

 

Thanks for joining us. Love to you all!

Advent-Day 13-Joshua

Hi all.

This month we are learning about God, God’s son Jesus and Jesus’ earthly family tree.

Today’s story is from the book of Joshua (chapters 5-6), and our lesson can be found here. Below is an abbreviated version of that story.

When it was time for the Israelites to enter the promised land, they had to get through a city called Jericho. But instead of using their big swords and fighting their way in, do you know what God told them to do? March around the city every day for 6 days and on the 7th day, march around the city 7 times, and then everybody yell and scream and blow your horns. Doesn’t that sound kind of silly?!

But it worked. The people obeyed God and the walls FELL DOWN! Sometimes God’s plan seem silly to us, be can ALWAYS trust that He knows what He’s doing.

Joshua was the commander (leader) of the Israelite army but God was HIS commander. And God leads us too. (Is 55:4) We might not always understand His plan, but we can trust Him.

 

When Mary and Joseph got to Bethlehem and there was no where for them to stay, then ended up staying in a barn?! Can you believe it? Baby Jesus was about to be born…and in a barn? With animals? And stinky hay? That probably seemed like a silly way for a King to be born, but God knew all along that’s the way it should be.

 

Bible story: Joshua

Attribute of God: Commander

Jesus’ birth story: God had a plan!

Craft:

Side one of our ornament today is a circle with a horn on it.

Our text reads: Joshua led the Israelites. God is our leader. Joshua 6, Isaiah 55:4

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Side two we cut out a brain shape and then drew the squiggly brain lines

Our text reads: God knew it would happen this way. Isaiah 40

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We taped a string on the inside and glued the sides together and then hung it on our family tree.

 

Thanks for joining us. We’ll have more tomorrow! Love to you all!

Advent-Day 12-Ruth

Welcome!

This month we are learning about God, God’s son Jesus and Jesus’ earthly family tree.

The next person in Jesus’ family tree is a woman named Ruth. She has her own book of the Bible and our lesson on Ruth can be found here. Our story today will be an abbreviated version.

Ruth had a mother-in-law named Naomi and Naomi’s husband AND Ruth’s husband had died. Back then, if the husband died, the wife would have no money and no way to take care of herself, so Naomi planned to go back to her people in Bethlehem (does that sound familiar?)

But Ruth wouldn’t let her go alone. She stayed right with Naomi and when they got there, Ruth went to fields to pick the leftover food for her and Naomi to share.

A man named Boaz owned the fields and he saw how hard-working and nice Ruth was. He saw that she took good care of Naomi and so he told her she could pick food from his fields anytime she wanted. Then he gave her a LOT of food to take home to Naomi.

When she told Naomi about it, Naomi said, “I know Boaz! He is part of out family! He will help us!”

Boaz was called a kinsman-redeemer…or a family member who could save them. (Just like Jesus saves us and takes care of us!) Boaz promised to take care of Ruth and Naomi and he even married Ruth.

Later Ruth would become King David’s grandma! And she would be part of Jesus’ family.

God is our redeemer. To redeem something means to save it, to forgive any bad in it, or to pay the price for something. When Jesus came, He died for us and He paid the price for our sins. He forgives us and saves us. (Job 19:25, Is 44:6, Luke 1:68 (Zechariah’s song)).

 

As we continue the story of Jesus’ birth, we remember that Mary and Joseph were visiting Bethlehem because all the people had to be counted, but when they got there, there was no where for them to stay?! Finally, someone said they could stay in the barn.

Can you imagine Mary and her big old belly sleeping in the barn? Have you ever been in a stinky barn? With hay and animals? They were probably happy for a warm place to stay, but I’m sure it’s not what they were expecting. (Just like Ruth had no idea she would be saved and married to Boaz when she followed her mother-in-law Naomi!)

Do you know what happens next in that barn? We’ll see tomorrow!

 

Bible story: Ruth

Attribute of God: Redeemer

Jesus’ birth story: room in the barn

Craft:

Side one of our ornament today is a circle and we cut out some shapes of grain. Then using the tips of our scissors, we fringed the wheat.

Our text reads: Day 12- Ruth

God is our redeemer. Ruth 1:1-2:3, Job 19:25IMG_0333

Side two of our ornament is a circle with a barn. (My son added some spider webs to the barn).

Our text reads: Mary and Joseph stayed in a barn. Luke 2

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Our current family tree, front and back:

 

Thanks for joining us. Love to you all!

 

Advent-Day 11-Rahab

Hi all.

This month we are learning about God, God’s son Jesus and Jesus’ earthly family tree.

The next person in the family tree is a woman named Rahab. (Story found in Joshua 2) Rahab was NOT an Israelite. She was from Jericho. (Have you heard that name before?) After Moses died, Joshua was in charge of leading the Israelites to the land God promised them. But there was a city called Jericho they had to get through. Jericho had big walls around it and seemed scary to the Israelites.

Joshua sent two spies into the city to see how many soldiers there were and to see how they should break in and take over.

The two spies were helped by a woman named Rahab. She hid them in her house and after the soldiers of Jericho found out some spies were in town, they started searching all over. When they came to Rahab’s house she said, “They came by, but they ran away that way! If you hurry, you can probably catch them!” So the soldiers took off running (but really the spies were hiding on Rahab’s roof!) She let them down with a red rope. She said “I know God has given this land to His people, the Israelites, but since I helped you, please remember my family when you come through and keep us safe!”

The spies thanked her for helping them and they promised if she put the red rope out of her window, they would keep her and her family safe.

When it came time for the Israelites to march around the city and for the walls to fall down, the Israelites made sure Rahab and her family were safe. And Rahab became the great great great grandmother of King David. God used all kinds of people in Jesus’ family tree-even people who weren’t Israelites. Because God doesn’t just love the Israelites, He loves ALL people.

Rahab gave the spies a hiding place. The Bible says God is OUR hiding place. Psalm 32:7 says, “You are my hiding place; You will protect me from trouble and surround me with songs of deliverance.” When we are scared, we can turn to God and know that He will keep us safe.

 

Well, after Mary and Joseph traveled to Bethlehem (Luke 2), they started looking for a place to stay. Remember, Mary was just about to have baby Jesus and her tummy was really big and uncomfortable. So Joseph asked at every hotel and house, but because so many people were coming to Bethlehem to be counted, nobody had any beds for them. They sure could have used a hiding place! Next time we will see where they ended up sleeping that night.

 

Bible story: Rahab

Attribute of God: Hiding Place

Jesus’ birth story: No room to stay

Craft:

Sie one of our ornament is a red rope made from several strands of red ribbon all taped onto a circle.

Our text reads: Rahab hid the spies. God is our hiding place. Josh 2:1-21, Psalm 32:7

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Side two of our ornament, we cut out another circle and wrote “no room”, then we covered it with a circle and a red slash through the middle.

Our text reads: There was no where for Mary and Joseph to stay. Luke 2

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Then we taped a string on one side of the ornament and glued the sides together. Then we taped it to our “family tree” on our wall.

Thanks for joining us again. Love to you all!