Here are the stories for this week. Each segment will include a summary, some follow-up wondering questions for home, a memory verse if you’d like to work on memorizing those and occasional ideas to further the study through the week as a family.
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Beulah Land: Elijah
Memory Verse: O, Lord, God of Abraham, Isaac and Israel, let it be known today that you are God in Israel and that I am your servant and have done all these things at your command. 1 Kings 18:36
Summary: This week’s story covers a lot of ground! Your kids will hear events from Elijah’s life such as being fed by ravens, battling prophets of Baal and meeting Elisha. The structure of this lesson is meant to “emphasize the sovereign will of God and inscrutable nature of the Living God, who, unlike Baal, is not to be tamed, placated or charmed by superstitious rituals, but is interested only in unflinching loyalty and righteous deeds.” Once again, your children will see the desert appear, and witness the recurrent theme of a “holy journey…whose leader and guide is the Lord of Hosts.”
I Wonder… : why the people grew lazy and careless? why they stopped following God’s laws? why Elijah went out to the desert and holy mountain? if you have ever heard the ‘still, small voice” of God? if this story reminds you of other stories? where you have heard about the desert before?
Additional Follow-up: Once again, I encourage re-reading the story and acting out roles. There are several parts of Elijah’s account that lend themselves to this. Have someone be the raven that brings food to hungry Elijah. Have another child whisper in a “still, small voice” that God is with Elijah.
Godly Play I: The Holy Family
Memory Verse: For unto us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. Isaiah 9:6
Summary: The Holy Family is a story that the Godly Play Curriculum advises to use at the start of every liturgical season or story type change throughout the year. The story is a simple description of the nativity scene that focuses on Jesus and His incarnation, death and resurrection. Because of the centrality of Jesus to all Scripture, it is important that children are consistently brought back to Him through the yearly spiral. It is the lens through which we Christians observe everything else.
I Wonder…: what you can tell me about the Holy Family? who is the most important family member? why it is important to remember the birth, death and resurrection of Jesus even during Ordinary Time (the green time)? what this has to do with you and me?
Additional Follow-up: Draw a picture of today’s lesson. Have your child tell you about each participant. I encourage you to not quiz the children to make sure they have the right answers, but allow them to talk about their picture and wonder about why we would care to remember something we typically only see at Christmas or Easter.
Godly Play II: The Holy Trinity
Memory Verse: May the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all. 2 Corinthians13:14
Summary: We’ve got one of those VERY mysterious and full of WONDER synthesis stories this week–the Holy Trinity. Today several lessons are pulled together to emphasize the presence of the Godhead in Creation, life of Jesus. Baptism and Church. The storyteller will help children wonder about a Three-in-One Presence.
I Wonder…: how God can be one, but three? where you have talked about the Trinity before? what it means when we baptize in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit?
Additional Follow-up: There are many ways in which we try to explain the Trinity to children…apples and eggs are two that come to mind. Yet those are not able to really capture what we believe. Instead of trying to figure it out, wonder about it over the week. Pray and ask for understanding as well as the ability to rest in God’s truth.