Forgiveness is one of the most difficult things we’ll ever have to do. We don’t want those that hurt us to “get off easy.” In fact, have you ever thought to yourself, “they need to suffer for what they did?” But who really suffers when we refuse to forgive someone? We do. Unforgiveness is like a wound that won’t heal; it festers, getting worse and worse, bigger and bigger until it consumes you.
You may think it’s not consuming you, but what happens when the story of that hurt comes back up? Can you talk about it joyfully or laugh about it? Or does it bring up the pain and anger all over again because you just can’t believe they could have done something like that to you? Even if you thought you forgave them, you may need to do it multiple times until it sticks and the pain and anger once again turn to love.
Looking at Joseph, Joseph could have held onto the betrayal of his own family selling him into slavery. He could have held onto the pain of being thrown into jail for something he did not do. He could have held onto the disappointment of being forgotten even after he had helped people. But he didn’t.
God allowed Joseph to go through all that to grow him and prepare him. As we pick up our story, we see how God put Joseph in a place where his brothers, who betrayed him, now must come and ask him for food. Joseph could send them away to starve or he could forgive them. Let’s see how it all unfolds.
Here’s a snapshot of what we’ll show the kids this week:
Bible Story Focus: God’s plan is always best. (Joseph Forgives • Genesis 42–45)
Memory Verse: “‘For I know the plans I have for you,’ says the Lord.” Jeremiah 29:11, NLT
Key Question: Who has a plan for you?
Bottom Line: God has a plan for me.
Bible Story & Worship
Start with the Bible Story Video and then stand up and worship God with your kids. Don’t be shy; your kids will love singing and dancing with you as you introduce them to what worship is all about. Singing and dancing is fun but even more fun when you do it for God.
The materials below will help reinforce the story as well as bring Jesus to their level. These can be done in any order, but I recommend the Discussion/Application last (this is the part that really brings Jesus to their level.) During this time, have a reward handy for your child if they are able to say the memory verse all by themselves.
As we wrap up, I’d like to leave you with one of the kids’ favorite ‘good-bye’ songs:
Let Me See Your Alligator
Thank you for the opportunity to partner with you in the discipleship of your kid(s). It’s my hope that these lessons will plant a seed in your kids that will allow them to have peace through all the highs on lows of God’s plan. My prayers are with you.
“Being confident of this very thing, that He who has begun a good work in you will complete it until the day of Jesus Christ.”
Angela Moody is the Preschool Coordinator at Abundant Life.