Dear Brothers and Sisters,
Welcome to Sharpened Words for Little Ones. This little section of The Remnant is designed to help you step into the water of obedience and see God bring you through. I was thinking the other day how many sermons I get while conducting family devotions. Dozens of times as we are sitting together, and I am teaching from some portion of Scripture, it dawns on me, “This is a sermon.” These simple everyday responsibilities are truly used by God to train us and expand us for future ministry. I am sure that is one of the reasons that Paul told Timothy to check and see what a man’s home is like before you ordain him into the ministry.
A faithful man at home will be the same in the church. Consider also that a man who has consistently expounded the Word to his family will be ready to expound the Word to a flock of people. Oh, the mysterious ways of God. He gives us the task of telling Bible stories, giving character lessons, and teaching the truth with many different objects. We carry out our task, day in and day out for many years, and, behold, we have become an able minister without even going away to a school to prepare.
I remember the learning experiences that I had working among the poor people of North Chicago. The children were all TV addicts. They were used to being captivated with changing pictures and thoughts every fifteen seconds. This was a challenge to keep their attention on a Sunday School bus. Little did I know that God was teaching me how to preach and teach in simplicity. I want to encourage you fathers to rise up to the task that God has entrusted to you. God is also preparing you for other things. He that is faithful in the unseen things will be given bigger things to do in the future.
God's Telephone Number
You will need a helper with this one. Bring a telephone to family devotions, and attempt to get contact some one by phone. Each time you dial the number, have your hidden helper say those wonderful words that none of us like to hear. There are many different ones that you can use: “No one is available to take your call.” “Please call back at another time.” “The number you have dialed is not in service.” “I'm sorry, the number you have dialed is busy.” You can think of more of them. You want to use many of them so the children get the idea. It is so hard to get through to someone. Then turn to Jer. 33:3 and read God's telephone number. Explain to the children that He is never away from the throne, and will always be ready to hear you when you call. The illustrations are endless from this point onward as you have laid the foundation for much good discussion.
Harmony In the Family
Teamwork and yielding to the wishes of another is the lesson here. There are many verses that you can draw from that speak about one mindedness, or being of the same mind. Before you begin your time in the Word, prepare some of the children ahead of time. Speak to them separately, and ask them to help you by singing a different song when it is time to sing. When the song is called and all begin to sing, there shall rise up a terrible confusing sound. Everyone will agree that this is a terrible way to have family worship. The point is, that everyone had their own mind about what they wanted to sing. Because of this, no one enjoyed the singing. This is the way family harmony can be at times. We want to do what we want to do, and nothing else matters. But look at the results. To be in harmony and to have the same mind, is a choice. We have to give up our will at times for the good of all the others in the home. You can make this very practical and ask for examples where they had a different mind in something.
The Blessing of Faithfulness
In this lesson, you will need to get a friend to help you. Give him a message of good news to deliver to your family. He can call on the telephone and ask for each member of the family to come to the phone. You could also use the speaker phone so all could hear it together. When they get their turn, have him tell them of some special event planned for the family. Maybe something like “your dad is going to take you all out for supper at Wendys.” As each child hears the message, their face will light up with joy. This is a very refreshing message. After this is all done, discuss with the children the principle of faithfulness. Find a definition for the word, and expound on it. What if he forgot to call and tell everyone. What if he got the message all mixed up, and told some of you some bad news, or different news. Here we have one who was diligent to carry out the task, and look how it has lit up everybody's heart with joy. You can use the verses in Proverb 25. Verse 13 is a verse on the blessings that come when the job is carried out right. Verse 19 is an example of the sadness and disappointment when the job is not done right.
The Poor Wise Man
Turn to the portion of scripture in Ecc. 9:14-18, and read the story about this dear man who did what nobody else could do. Wisdom is the motivation here. We must be constantly looking for different ways to motivate our children to seek after wisdom. We don't know what the wisdom was that he used to deliver the city. The Bible is silent so that we can fill in the blanks with many different points of wisdom. Use your imagination to come up with a feasible situation that could have happened. Use the story of Elisha where the Syrians encompassed the city where he was staying. See how this one wise man delivered the whole city. Remember the time when famine was in the land of Samaria, and it was the lepers who ventured out into the camp of the enemy, and found all the food and spoil, delivering the city. You could also use the example of the Apostle Paul when he was lost at sea for fourteen days and how he delivered the entire ship full of men by his wisdom.
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