Blessed People Bless People
In the very beginning, our Good God created the whole world. He made the heavens and the earth and then God said, “Let there be light.” And there was light. God saw that the light was good. The light he called “day” and the darkness he called “night”. This was the first day of God’s creation.
God said, “Let there be a huge space between the waters.” This space he called the sky. This was the second day of God’s creation.
God said, “Let dry ground appear and let the land grow plants and trees.” The dry ground he called “land” and the water he called “oceans”. God saw what he had done and knew that it was good. This was the third day of God’s creation.
God said, “Let there be lights in the sky, one for the day and a smaller one for the night.” The sun he made to shine during the day and the moon he made to shine at night. He also made the stars. God saw this was good. This was the fourth day of God’s creation.
God said, “Let the oceans be filled with fish and living things and let the sky be filled with birds.” God saw this was good. This was the fifth day of God’s creation.
God said, “Let there be land animals of all kinds.” He made wild animals and livestock animals and creatures that move along the ground. God saw that this was good. Then God said, “Let us make man and woman.” God created humans in his likeness for them to rule over the living creatures of the earth. God blessed them. Then God saw everything he had made and it was very good. That was the sixth day of God’s creation.
When God finished every detail of his good creation, he rested. This was the seventh day of God’s creation. He blessed the seventh day and made it a Holy Day by resting from his work.
Focus: God is good and is the creator of the world.
Prayer: Thank you, God, for creating so many wonderful things for us to enjoy.
Genesis 37; 42; 45; 47
Joseph had eleven brothers. They all took care of their father’s sheep and goats. Joseph’s father loved him very much. He loved Joseph so much that it made Joseph’s brothers jealous of him. Even though his brothers did not treat him kindly, Joseph continued to help his father. One day the brothers were so tired of Joseph that they sold him to a group of traders who were traveling to Egypt.
Joseph was taken away from his family to live and work in a different place. As he worked for a very important man Joseph became stronger and wiser. He was very good at making decisions. These good decisions helped the people in Egypt. Joseph helped the people store their food in big barns so that they would have plenty to eat during a time when it was very hard to find food.
Joseph’s brothers had also run out of food. They had heard there was food in Egypt so they traveled to Egypt hoping that they could buy food to take back to their father. Joseph was now the governor of the land of Egypt. When his brothers arrived to buy food they did not recognize Joseph. After many days of Joseph pretending to be a stranger to his brothers, he finally said to them, “I am Joseph! I am your brother. I am the one you sold into Egypt. Don’t be angry with yourselves because you sold me here. God sent me ahead of you to help others. God has sent me to help you by His mighty power and strength. God has given me the strength I need.” Joseph hugged each of his brothers as they celebrated being together again.
Focus: Joseph became a strong leader because of God’s protection.
Prayer: Thank you, God, for how you used Joseph and helped him to be strong. Give us the same kind of strength and energy so that we can help others.
Luke 8, 9, 17, 23
Jesus loves people very much. He was sent to earth by God for that very reason – to show love. Because Jesus’ love for others, he always put the needs of other people ahead of his own needs. One day Jesus had been teaching to a large crowd of people. He realized they were all getting hungry. Jesus stopped teaching and prayed to God. He asked God to multiply a little boy’s lunch so that the whole group could be fed. They were able to give food to everyone! And they even had leftovers.
At the end of another long day, Jesus and his friends got into a boat to go to the other side of the lake. Jesus was tired, so he laid down and fell asleep. While Jesus was sleeping a storm came and scared Jesus’ friends in the boat. Jesus got up and ordered the wind and waves to stop. He said, “Quiet! Be still!” Everything became completely calm and his friends were no longer afraid.
When Jesus was walking to Jerusalem to teach, he met ten men on the road. They all had a skin disease and when they recognized Jesus, they knew he could heal them. So from a distance on the road, they called out, “Jesus, Master, have mercy on us!” Jesus looked at them and said, “Go. Show yourselves to the priests.” While the ten men went on their way, they became healed of their skin disease.
While Jesus lived on earth he always put others first by taking care of their needs. At the end of Jesus’ time on earth he followed God’s plan by giving up his life as a sacrifice on the cross. Jesus became the Savior of the world by dying and coming back to life three days later! This gives people the gift of living life forever with him one day!
Focus: Jesus puts the needs of others first by becoming their Savior.
Prayer: Thank you God for loving us and sending Jesus to be our Savior.
Naomi lived in Bethlehem with her husband and two sons. During this time the crops did not grow so they moved to Moab where they could find food. While they were in this new land the sons got married. One son’s wife was named Ruth and the other one was named Orpah. While they were still living in Moab a very sad thing happened. Naomi’s husband and two sons died. That left Naomi, Ruth and Orpah all alone. Naomi decided she needed to return to her home land of Bethlehem. She told Ruth and Orpah to go back to their own families.
Ruth was very brave and decided she would live her own family and take care of Naomi by going back with her to Bethlehem. Ruth said, “Where you go I’ll go. Where you stay I’ll stay. Your people will be my people. Your God will be my God.” When both Naomi and Ruth arrived in Bethlehem there were many new people for Ruth to meet. Ruth also had to find food for them to eat. She asked Naomi if she could go and gather the grain from the barley fields after the workers had cut and gathered what they needed. This would give them grain to make bread.
The owner of the barley field was named Boaz. He noticed that Ruth was new to Bethlehem and said to her, “Don’t pick up grain in any other field. Stay here with my servants where you will be safe. And when you are thirsty, get a drink from our jars.” Ruth was surprised that he spoke to her and asked, “Why are you being so kind to me?” Boaz responded, “I’ve heard how brave you have been and what you have done to care for Naomi. I know that you have obeyed God by living your family and moving to a new place.”
Ruth felt welcomed by Boaz and his kindness. After some time, Ruth and Boaz became married. God blessed Ruth’s courage and obedience by providing a new husband for her.
Focus: Ruth was brave when she obeyed God by staying with Naomi and moving to a new land.
Prayer: Dear God, Help me to not be afraid and to be brave when I need to obey.
Mary and Martha were sisters. They were also good friends of Jesus. There were many times when Jesus and other friends would go to Mary and Martha’s house. They would visit, cook, eat and enjoy hearing Jesus teach about God. They always enjoyed having Jesus come to their home because they loved him very much. One day, Jesus had come for a visit. This time Mary was very interested in everything Jesus had to tell them. Mary sat at his feet the whole time he was talking. Martha, Mary’s sister, was cooking and doing all the work to prepare their food they were going to eat. She was doing all of the work by herself while Mary just kept setting by Jesus. Martha finally stepped in and said to Jesus, “My sister has left me to do the work by myself. Don’t you care? Tell her to help me!”
Jesus responded to her by saying, “Martha, you are worried and upset about the many things in the house that keep you busy. There is only one thing you should be focused on. That one thing is me. Mary is concerned about what I am here to give each of you.”
Martha was good at showing her love for Jesus by cooking for him. Mary showed her love by listening to him. And Jesus showed his love for both of them by visiting them in their home and telling them about God. He wanted both Mary and Martha to have his love forever.
Focus: Jesus loved Mary and Martha the same even though they acted differently towards him.
Prayer: Thank you, Lord, for loving us. Help us to love others no matter how they act.