Monday, 27 June 2011

CBC and TF Teen - Gideon Story

Here is a background song to play while we tell the story below!

Well let's bring the children to the same faith that we are livingbut attention respecting the language of each child and adapting according to the age.
We will explore different visual methods, here already posted.
Who may not be able to apply accordingly so try your best to follow the directions according to the reality of your CBC. 
The Children's activities for this month of June is suspended as well here is posted their activities for the first 3 weeks of July.

Sing and pray as usual.  Get straight to the story because they will have a craft to do about the story afterwards.  Prepare the materials you will need in advance.

Illustrating the story
You can start the class in a different way, don’t make the first prayer just yet, but take something that belongs to one of the kids and act as if it is yours, and ask them “what are you going to do about this?”  
Are you going to let me have it, or are you going to take it back?
Then you give the object back to the child and follow instructions below.

Ask them:
If God was looking for a strong warrior, what type of man would that be?  Full of muscles?  Brave? Someone who has been a soldier in battle many times before?
If you had to fight a big army, would you find a little army to fight them, or a bigger one?
If the army you were fighting had already killed many other armies, what kinds of weapons would you use?  Machine guns?  Bombs?  Missiles?  Grenades? Tanks?  Fighter jets?

God is so powerful that sometimes he does things that seem totally backwards to give us victory over our enemies!

Gideon Story (Tell them lively, with Spirit and in a creative way) 
There once was a time in Israel when the people of God had stopped obeying Him.  They were worshipping false gods and doing whatever they wanted.  They became weak because they pushed God out of their lives.  Their enemies began to attack them and did terrible things to them.  Their enemies were called the Midianites. 

The Midianites just invaded their land, stole all the food and animals from their farms, robbed their homes and made the Israelites very poor and very afraid.  They had to hide in caves and couldn't even live in their own homes any more because the Midianites would kill them. That had been going on for seven years. 

One day an Israelite named Gideon was trying to find some wheat that the Midianites had forgotten to steal, so he could use it to feed his family.  He was hiding and working at the same time, and really really angry.  It was so unfair.  They were God's people but they were living like they were nobodies.  

Suddenly an angel appeared to him and said, "The Lord is with you, mighty warrior!"
Gideon said, "Who, me?  I'm not a mighty warrior, you've got the wrong guy!  And what do you mean, the Lord is with me - how can God be with me when my people are being destroyed?"

The angel was happy to see that Gideon was angry, because God was angry too.  God hated to see His people being bullied and killed by enemies, even though it was their fault for pushing God out of their lives.

The anger said, "Go in this strength you have and deliver Israel from your enemies!"  That meant that because Gideon's anger was the same as God's anger, he would be strong enough to become the hero of Israel!

Gideon knew he was a nobody, but he also knew that God had commanded him to lead, and so he did.  He called all the men of Israel to get ready for war.  32,000 men came.  The problem was that the Midianites were much, much, much bigger and stronger than them!! They had more than 120,000 soldiers and they were all camped out in the valley ready to kill every Israelite any moment!

Gideon was scared because 32,000 men weren't enough, but he thought to himself, "I guess we'll just have to fight hard to win."  But then God did something crazy.  God said, "Gideon, I don't like this army.  You have too many soldiers."

What?  Too many?  But Gideon knew that the only way to win was to obey God.  God told him to send home all the scared and lazy soldiers who really didn't want to go to war.  Do you know how many went back home?  22,000!  Now Gideon's army was so small!  

Then God looked at the army of just 10,000 men and said, "Gideon, your army is still too big. Tell the men to go down to the river and have a drink of water, and then I'll tell you who to choose." Gideon knew he couldn't argue, and the soldiers went to drink.  Some of them kneeled down and stuck their faces in the water to drink straight from the river, but others scooped up the water to their mouths and drank from their hands.  God knew exactly who were the best soldiers there by the way they drank.  He told Gideon, tell all the ones who drank right from the river to go home - I don't need them.  But the others are perfect.  They will make the best army.

So after the next bunch of soldiers went home, Gideon was left with only 300 men.  300 against 120,000. That's like a mosquito trying to fight a bear!  It would never work in a normal war, but with God, it would have to work.

Take a torch that is lit on fire, but cover up the flame with a clay pot.  Then have a trumpet ready and your sword hanging by your side. But your hands have to hold the torch and trumpet.  They will be our main weapons.

How in the world can you fight strong armies with pots and torches and trumpets?  Does that sound crazy to you?

Then at the darkest, quietest time of the night, Gideon and his men climbed to the top of the hillsides that surrounded the Midianites camp.  Their torches were burning, but nobody could see the fire because it was hiding under the clay pots.  Then all of a sudden Gideon shouted out loudly, "A sword for the Lord and for Gideon!!"  At that moment, all of the 300 Israelite soldiers smashed their clay pots and the fire of their torches blazed out bright, and then they blew their powerful trumpets as loud as they could, waking up all the sleeping Midianites in the valley below them.

"A sword for the Lord and for Gideon!!"  Shouted all the men!  And they rushed down the hill, but the angel of God got to the Midianites first.  The MIdianites woke up terrified of the sound of the shouting and trumpets and the bright lights of the torches waving on the hilltops.  They became so afraid that they started killing each other!  The Israelite army didn't have to fight at all!!  By morning all that was left was the camp of their enemies, and the few that didn't kill each other just ran away in fear!

God wiped out a terrible enemy that had destroyed His people for seven years, just because one man was angry enough to fight back.  Being angry the way God is angry with our problems is a very good thing.  
But if we are angry and try to fight our problems with our own feelings, we always make a mess.  Who is ready to be angry against problems and fight, like Gideon?

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