Joseph is Tested


Joseph was a remarkable young man.  He served Potiphar and the LORD blessed and prospered both men.  He had been sold into slavery by his brothers and brought to another land but did not let his situation cause him to despair.  But wait… Joseph’s trials and testings are just getting “turned up” a few degrees. Now he is being falsely  accused and thrown into prison.  ” But the LORD was with Joseph and showed him loving-kindness and gave him favor in the sight of the warden of the prison.” We all have a tendency to think God is taking too long to come to our rescue or deliverance…but have you ever taken anything out of the oven before it has finished baking?  It is not useful for its intended purpose which is a good tasting treat. (To further illustrate this you could half-bake some cupcakes or muffins for the kids to taste…and then bake some the correct amount of time for them to snack on or take home with their project)  Joseph wanted to get out of prison ASAP, but we read he had to linger another 2 full years after he helped  the royal butler and baker with their dreams even though he asked to not be forgotten.To assemble this lesson print worksheets included below.  If you have a contrasting color of card stock to print your oven door on, that will save you some coloring.  The inside of the oven should be white card stock.  Cut and glue top part of oven door (the section with the controls) to top of white page which is the inside of the oven.  Cut out oven window and cookies and prepare cookie tray by wrapping in a small piece of foil like you would wrap a present, and spelling out words as shown above, glue cookies to tray.  Tape or glue tray to oven rack.  If you want to tape a piece of plastic bag or of wax paper to the oven door, that would be an optional step.

Glue the bottom of the oven door( from the dotted line to the bottom of the page) to bottom of the inside oven page.  Fold door forward .  A little piece of magic tape, curled up so it is sticky on all sides, and placed on the inside of the top of the oven door will keep it closed.  This lesson would fit in between the other two lessons of Joseph if you are teaching this series in chronological order.

Make sure these cookie trays fit on a half page, you could fit 6 on a whole page with some finagling!

Nehemiah Restores Hope


nehemiah 2

Nehemiah has so much to teach us so I hope you take the time to read Ezra and Nehemiah.            (Zechariah and Haggai also, if you have time…as they all tie together.)  Here is what is happening in a nutshell:  the Lord had stirred up the spirit of Cyrus to let the Jews go back to rebuild the temple. Only 42,360 went with Zerubbabel to reestablish the worship in Jerusalem.  They had just laid the foundation of the temple with much rejoicing but were frustrated in their plans by great opposition and forced  to stop until the second year of Darius.  Haggai and Zechariah prophesy to the Jews and they were encouraged to begin  the project where they left off .  The temple was finished in the sixth year of Darius.   Sixty years pass and Ezra, a  priest and skilled scribe, comes to Jerusalem to teach the Lord’s statutes and ordinances with much treasure to beautify the temple. The heads of families who accompanied Ezra  number 1,496.  After fasting and prayer, they arrived safely .  Ezra then received the bad report from the leaders that 17 priests, 10 Levites and 86 laymen had  inter-married with pagans, which was strictly forbidden by the LORD. This sin had to be severely dealt with.

Now we come to Nehemiah.  He was a cup-bearer to the king, Artaxerxes, and was given  upsetting news in the 20th year of this king’s reign.  Some men from Judah reported that the people in Jerusalem were in great distress and disgrace  because their walls were broken down, and their gates were burned with fire.  Nehemiah wept over this state of affairs, and prayed that the king would let him go to help his people.  The king granted Nehemiah’s request for letters assuring his safe passage and timber for the gates and the house he would occupy .  The enemy was “deeply disturbed that a man had come to seek the well-being of the children of Israel.” The people were rallied and able to complete the great work in 52 days in spite of tremendous hostilities. (If you are teaching chronologically, this lesson would be taught after Esther.) This book is remarkable to me, not only for it’s encouraging spiritual lessons, but because the LORD honors each worker explicitly by name…what  great treasure and reward is stored up for them in eternity!

Nehemiah – worksheet

Color both pages…match stones below with the main wall in the worksheet above.  Cut out stones and glue per sample above.  We want to learn the proper tools to fight the enemies’ opposition, so cut out and glue the tools (have kids choose where they want to glue tools…there is no “right” answer, each tool will overcome any of the “stumbling blocks”…please extend the “y” on the bottom stone (conspiracy)…it got cut off in the scan!