Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Fear vs. Courage

Start with prayer—

This lesson is about the Twelve Spies and should be done in warmer weather because you will want to take the children outdoors, if possible as they will be "spying" out the land.

Fear vs. Courage

Gear up and head out to spy out the promised land (have their snack and memory verse pieces set out for them to find).

Supplies Needed:

Sheets (for cloakes and later to lay on the ground for seating)
hats (something for head, turbans)
Snack:  Grapes, Honey Spread and Mini Bagels
Memory verse pieces (Make "grapes" out of purple paper.  Put one word from Joshua 1:9 on each "grape")

Scripture text: Numbers 13:1-2; 13:17-14:11; 14:22-38 (14:30 only Caleb and Joshua will remain alive to inherit the promised land)

The Lord had promised the Israelites the land of Canaan "a land flowing with milk and honey" for their inheritance. He brought them out of Egypt and did great and mighty wonders in front of their eyes. He preserved them many times with food, water, clothing. When they got to the area where the "promised land" was, God instructed Moses to send in 12 spies (one from each tribe) to spy out the land to see if it was able to be possessed. What types of foods and land it was. The 12 went out and spied the land for 40 days. The land in deed was fantastic. There was lush green lands and vineyards. They found one cluster grapes that it took 2 men to carry on their shoulders because they were so big. It was everything the Lord promised it would be, but there was one "big" problem. Some of the inhabitants of the land were "giants".
When the 12 came back with their report, Caleb and Joshua told Moses how wonderful the land was, but the other 10 was not focused on the good, they were convinced that there was no way the Israelites would be able to overtake the giants. They didn’t remember how the Lord parted the Red Sea, or how he provided food and water in the middle of the desert. They didn’t remember any of the Lord’s mighty victories. You see giants in the land is no big problem for God, but they didn’t compare God’s size to the giants. They compared themselves to the giants and that is where the true problem lied. They said we are like grasshoppers compared to these people. There is no way we can overcome them and cast them out of this land. This upset God altogether and because of their doubt the Israelites were made to wonder and die in the wilderness one year for every day the spies spied out the land. That’s 40 years! God said that all the children of Israel 20 years old and older except for Caleb and Joshua because of their faith, would die in the wilderness and never inherit their promised land. Their fear, and lack of faith and trust in God lost them their promise.

You know sometimes that happens to us. God has promised us many good things, some material things and other spiritual things, but because we face adversity or different problems "giants" so to speak, fear grips our hearts and we forfeit the promise because we are most focused on the problem than the promise.

Let’s discuss some types of promises or rewards we can get but we have backed out because of fear or doubt.

Sometimes we doubt our abilities like the Israelites because of our size or appearance or knowledge. We doubt ourselves. We’re not good enough. We can’t do it! We are afraid of goofing up is what it boils down to. But God has promised that he would never leave us nor forsake us so we should not be afraid but have courage. Courage in him!

Maybe there are some things that God is asking you to do (sing a special, give a bible study, invite a friend to church, pray before eating your lunch at school, etc) but you are afraid of goofing up or what others might think of you so you won’t do it. You are giving up promises each time you let fear win out.

Maybe God has promised he would save your friends soul but that’s not going to happen if you don’t invite them to church. Maybe God has promised you something great in the music ministry area but you are too afraid to even sing a special. It could be anything, it doesn’t even have to do with church. Just anything in life. Later in life maybe you want to be a doctor, but the thought of 8 years of college or more is very daunting. Are you smart enough? How will you ever know unless you try. Eight years is a long time to go to school but you have the promise of being a doctor when you graduate.

Every good thing in life comes with a challenge "a giant" if you will. Your success depends on whether you choose to face the giant or let the fear of that giant beat you.

God has made us one incredible promise. He said...

For the memory verse...scramble the "found" grapes, Read the verse below aloud to the children once, then have them make a cluster of grapes, with the words to the verse in the proper order.  Go over the verse with them a few more time until it memorized.

Memory verse: Joshua 1:9—

...Be strong and of a good courage; be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed: for the Lord thy God is with thee withersoever thou goest.

The promise is that God will be with you where ever you go, so long as you trust him. 

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This blog is dedicated to all things inspirational, with it's basis solely from the infallible, inerrant word of God. Unless otherwise posted all scripture references will be taken from the Kings James version of the Holy Bible. Some biblical material and docrinal views on this blog may be controversial in content. I ask when viewing this type of material that you open your heart solely to the word of God and allow his truth, as written in his word, to teach and guide you.
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