Nature Window: Nest-building
Have you had the awesome privilege of watching a bird or pair of birds build a nest? They make many many trips to and from their selected home spot carrying building supplies. Some use twigs and mud. Others use thread and random soft stuff. God guides them to know just what to do, so that their nest is warm, soft, and safe. When the birds are satisfied that their nest is just right, then mother bird lays eggs in it.
Birds building nests reminds me of the Bible verse, Psalm 127:1, which says, "Unless the Lord builds the house, they labor in vain who build it; unless the Lord guards the city, the watchman stays awake in vain." There was a time in Bible history when God brought some of his people back home to Jerusalem from a long exile in Babylon and Medo-Persia. When the people got back, their city was in ruins. They had to build the gates and build God's house again. It was a lot of work, but God guided them step by step.
Below are some options this month for experiencing the nature lesson.
Memory Mastery: The Godhead
This quarter we are learning more about the Godhead. During our time, we will unpack a little of the mystery of God to help the children understand some important principles. At the end of our questions and answers, you will find a poem about the Godhead that I want the children to memorize.
Who is God?
Did God really make everything? What was there before Him?
Reference: Acts 17:24-28
Do you like to be alone all by yourself? Neither does God.
In fact, did you know God has his own family?
References: 1 John 5:7; Mark 1:9-11
Can we see God?
References: 1 John 4:12; John 6:46; Hebrews 4:14; John 15:26; John 14:7-9
Here is a poem I wrote to help us remember each person of the Godhead. Let's say it and do our hand motions.
(This poem is the actual memory mastery project we will memorize as a class.)
Mission Trip: A Secondary School for Libreville, Gabon
This quarter we are collecting coins to help our world church build a secondary school in Libreville, Gabon. This school will help other children and youth learn more about Jesus and His love.
Bible Story: Faithful Builders
Book of Nehemiah
Nehemiah was a Jew living in Medo-Persia. He was one of the captives from Judah. Nehemiah served King Artaxerxes food and drink.
One day he was very sad. "What's wrong?" asked the King. Nehemiah said a quick prayer to God. Then, he answered, "I have received news from back home that Jerusalem is in ruins and the gates were destroyed with fire. I am sad because the people that remain there are not safe, and God's city is destroyed." The king responded, "What would you like to do?" Nehemiah asked the king for permission to return to Jerusalem and rebuild the city gates.
The king said Nehemiah could go back home. Then Nehemiah asked him for wood and soldiers. The king granted all of Nehemiah's requests. Surely, God was with Nehemiah to send him back to Jerusalem to rebuild God's city.
When Nehemiah reached Jerusalem, he looked all around. There was a lot of work to do. The next day, he talked to the leaders that were there. "Let's rebuild the city gates," he said, "God has granted me help. I know He wants us to rebuild Jerusalem." The people of Judah decided to help. Each man worked on a part of the wall, till all of it was rebuilt.
Some enemies tried to stop Nehemiah, so he had to assign some workers to act as guards to protect the city. Even though the project was hard and there were other people who didn't want it done, God's people trusted in God to help them finish the job.
Our prayer verse is Nehemiah 2:20, which says, "The God of heaven will give us success. We are God’s servants. We will start rebuilding" (ICB). God is still looking for helpers, like Nehemiah, who will see things that need to be done, ask God for help, and work hard to do them. You can practice being a good helper at home with mommy and daddy. There is always lots of work to be done around the house.
Dear Father God, I want to be your servant, like Nehemiah. I want to work hard for you. In Jesus' name, Amen
Below are some options this month for experiencing the story. Focus on one each week.
Activity 1: Make a trail (using painters tape, string, chalk, etc.) to walk on from Jerusalem to Babylon. Can you keep your feet on the line? Remember that the children of Judah were taken captive to Babylon. Then Medo-Persia came to power. When you get to the end of the trail, can you say, "Babylon, then Medo-Persia, let's go back to Jerusalem." Now walk your trail all the way back to "Jerusalem" pretending you are with Nehemiah.
Activity 2: Do you like to help? When Nehemiah first got back to Jerusalem, he looked all around to see the damage. Take a walk around your house. Look for things that need to be done (toys on floor, dirty dishes, etc.). What's one thing you can do to help this week?
Activity 3: Can you help Nehemiah rebuild the wall of Jerusalem? Get some blocks (or some craft sticks and Play-doh) and build a wall.
Activity 4: While some people built the wall, others were acting as guards and looking out to make sure enemies were not coming to attack them. A guard has to keep their eyes open and pay close attention to anything that moves. Let's pretend we are guarding our house (apartment, etc.). Let's look out the window and see who can first see something move and say what it is (birds, squirrels, bike rider, car coming).