Friday, March 21, 2014

Lesson - Trying To Hurry God

VERSES:   Gen. 16:1-16

MEMORY VERSE:   Genesis 16:6  "...And when Sarai dealt hardly with her, she fled from her face."  Genesis 16:6 

BOOK TO REMEMBER:  Review Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, Deuteronomy and Joshua.

PRAYER:   Pray that when we ask God for favors, that we let Him answer in his own time and that we do not hurry God.  God knows the future.  God is in control.  Pray for patience.

SPECIAL SONG:   "The Family In God's Plan"  (see March - Songs We Sing In Bible Class #4 on this blog)

VISUAL AID:  Whiteboard Drawing (see examples above "Verses" and below under "Activity")

  • Do you remember how we talk to God?  Did we just talk to God a minute ago?  How did we do that?  That's right! We prayed, didn't we?  We talk to God through prayer. Sometimes when we ask God for something, it takes time and we remember that we should never hurry God's answer to us.  God knows the future and He knows what is best for us, doesn't He?  God knows everything!
  • Today our lesson is about Sarai, Abram's wife. Sarai tried to hurry God. Did Abram and Sarai have any children? No, not even one.  We have talked about God's promises to Abram before.  When Abram was in Ur of the Chaldees, God said that if Abram would leave Ur of the Chaldees and go to a land that God would guide him to, then he would receive many promises.  One of those promises was that he and Sarai would have a son.
  • But, Abram and Sarai were getting older and they didn't have any sons, yet.  Sarai was getting impatient! She thought she had an idea.  Back in the Old Testament times, men sometimes would have two wives.  God never liked it because He had made one man and one woman, remember?  Do you remember what the first man and woman's names were?  That's right!  Adam and Eve! They were to marry and love each other and serve God and have a family, just like Abram and Sarai were to do. One man and one woman for life.  
  • But Sarai had another idea.  She thought if she could arrange for Abraham to have another wife, Hagar, and have them have a son, then she could claim that that son was hers and Abram's!  Was that God's idea?  No!  It was Sarai's idea and she convinced Abram that it was a good idea, too.  But it was not a good idea.  It did nothing, but cause trouble.  
  • After she found out that Hagar was going to have a son, she did not like that idea at all! She hated Hagar and treated her harshly or roughly.  She was not kind to Hagar, so Hagar ran away.  An angel of the LORD found Hagar by a water fountain in the wilderness and talked to her. The angel asked Hagar, "Where did you come from and where are you going?" Hagar explained that she had run away from Sarai. The angel of the LORD told Hagar that she was going to have a son and she should name him Ishmael.  He would be a wild man and be in a lot of battles.  Sure enough, Hagar did have a son and she did name him Ishmael just like the angel said.  The Bible says that Abram was 86 years old when Ishmael was born.
  • So, sometimes when we think we have a good idea and are helping God, we are really hurrying God and things don't work out like we want them to work out.  We should be patient and wait for God's answer.  Sarai should have been patient, too.  She should have trusted God.  God ALWAYS keeps his promises and He will keep His promise to Abram. 
"Older Students" Tips:
  • Reinforce the idea that all of this whole story was Sarai's idea and God was never really a part of it.  She took matters into her own hands and influenced Abram's thinking as well. We need to keep our minds clear and let God answer our prayers the way He wants to answer His time.
  • Reinforce the family as God intended:  Man, Woman for life; children are added blessings.
  • Explain that having a strong faith is important.  We need to have faith that God will do all that He has said in His Word that He would do.  How does faith come?  (Rom. 10:17)  By hearing God's Word!  When we read the Bible, we will learn and know what God intends for us to do. Tell them to never stop reading, even when they are very, very, very old.
ACTIVITY:     Coloring Picture (With Additions By Student)
Materials:  White paper with Sarai and Hagar already drawn on it by the Bible teacher, construction paper (4" x4"), scissors, crayons, glue
  1. Advance Preparation by Teacher:  On white typing paper (8,5" x 11") draw Sarai like in picture above.  (Try it!  You can do it!)    Add a tiny Hagar running away with a few black scratches for grass and a horizon line.  Depending on the level of your students, write the title and where the lesson is found in the Bible. It is easier to copy the picture at a local copy center or the teacher can draw one picture for each child. If students are older, let them write the words and, if your students are able, let them try to duplicate your whiteboard drawing.
  2. Cut out a 4" x 6" piece of colored paper.
  3. Fold colored paper in half.
  4. Write the question "Where did the angel find Hagar?" on the outside of the folded paper and the answer "By the fountain of water in the wilderness" on the inside of the colored paper. (See picture below.)  If you believe this is too difficult for your students to write, then write it for them.  At least, they can glue the card on the picture.
  5. Glue backside of colored paper to right-hand corner of picture, so that it forms a flap that can open and close. (See picture at the top of this blog.)
  6. Color, adding frown to Sarai's face.