Elijah and the Widow of Zarephath
Elijah has been living a “hidden” life for the past year or so. Now God has commanded him to go to Jezebel’s home town “where I have commanded a widow to feed you.” This destitute mother had resigned herself to the mournful fate of starvation when the prophet of the living God brought her His word of hope… would she have the faith to believe Elijah’s word and take the only sustenance at hand and give it away to the hungry stranger? This is only the first part of the story as the widow’s son got sick and died. Distraught, she confronted Elijah with her anguish. He took the young child and prayed to the LORD to restore his soul to his body. The LORD hearkened to the voice of His servant and the boy was restored to his mother. This Gentile widow had experienced supernatural provision for many months…but it took the resurrection of her son to cause her to to believe in Elijah’s God for herself.
Soon we will celebrate the resurrection of the Son of God. Let us dedicate ourselves to following Eph.5:14-16 “Awake O sleeper, and arise from the dead, and Christ shall shine upon you and give you light. Look carefully then how you walk! Live purposefully and worthily…(not as unwise and witless, but as wise…) Making the most of the time (buying up every opportunity) because the days are evil.”
Jesus made reference to the faith of the Gentile widow of Zarephath. She is a good example of what just a little light can accomplish for the Kingdom. If you are new to the blog…WELCOME!
Widow of Z – with text
Widow of Z. – no text
After coloring page, glue little twigs to the widow’s arms.
“Be still and know that I am God”
We read in James 5, that the prophet Elijah was a man with a nature like ours, yet his prayers were powerful and effective. Let us take a closer look at this man who was mightily used by God…one of two people in the Bible who did not physically die! We have already studied Elijah as he confronted the weak idolatrous King Ahab, was miraculously fed by ravens, and who fearlessly challenged the children of Israel and the prophets of Baal on Mt. Carmel. He then announced to the king that rain was coming to the thirsty land . This took faith and persistent prayer. The hand of the LORD came upon Elijah and he “girded up his loins and ran ahead of Ahab to the entrance of Jezreel”…a distance of 13 miles! Threatened by wicked Jezebel with death, Elijah fled for his life to Beersheba. (80 miles south) Then he went a days journey into the wilderness, came and sat down under a broom tree and prayed to die! How depressed he must have been…after doing great things for the LORD, the revival he was expecting did not flourish and Jezebel was hounding him. But God “knows our frame ” (Psalm 103:14) and tenderly sent an angel to feed him… twice…and he went in the strength of that food for 40 days (40 is the number of testing in the Bible), traveling to Mt. Horeb. He went into “the” cave and spent the night…rehearsing all his grievances to himself. He then encountered God in an amazing way and was given a new mission, and the encouraging news that there were 7,000 faithful followers of the LORD…he was not the only one! Elijah had to learn what we all have to learn….to “Be still, and know that I am God”….circumstances may seem crazy and “out of control” but the LORD reigns…we do not need to fear…the LORD of hosts is with us; the God of Jacob is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.(Psalm 46)
You probably have some tissue flames left from the last lesson which you can use for fire here. To make the foliage for the broom tree , I used a tiny pinecone dipped in home-made ink (tacky glue and foodcolor…mix all 4 colors until you get a nice olive-green shade) or use an inkpad. If no tiny pinecones are available, look for something that will print an interesting impression. The story starts in 1 Kings 18:41-19:18. Optional: cut out food -“cake ” (bread?) and a flask of water out of construction paper , to set by the sleeping Elijah… scrunch up some red tissue paper into tiny balls to make coals and place them in a ring of rocks.Thread your “cake” on a toothpick colored brown. You may also decide to sketch them onto your work sheet instead.
Peter, James and John had the privilege of seeing the Lord in His heavenly glory and majesty , hearing the voice of God, and seeing Moses and Elijah. Read about it in Matthew 17, Mark 9 and Luke 9 .This requires 1/2 sheet of dark card stock per child so there is a contrast with Jesus’ robe. You will also need glitter for this. (A transparent glitter is best) Put a “jacob’s ladder” under Peter, James and John. For instructions see you-tube ” How to make a jacob’s ladder” uploaded by rostichery. Wax paper cloud is optional.
The prophets of Baal have gathered for a showdown ,with Elijah calling to the people to decide which god they will follow. The prophets of Baal cried aloud and cut themselves to get their god’s attention…but there was no answer . (I wonder why!) Now Elijah prays to the only Living God “…Hear me, O Lord, that this people may know that YOU are the LORD God… Then the fire of the LORD fell and consumed the burnt sacrifice, and the wood and the stones and the dust, and it licked up the water that was in the trench. Now when the people saw it, they fell on their faces and said, ‘The LORD, He is God! The LORD, He is God!'” (You will want to make a little “jacob’s ladder” under the people to portray and little fear and trembling…for a demonstration for this technique go to “You-Tube” and check out “how to make a jacob’s ladder” uploaded by rostichery.)
You will need tissue paper and glue for the flames.
God feeds Elijah
The prophet Elijah appears suddenly in 1Kings 17. He has been sent to the Northern Kingdom (Israel) which has separated from the Southern Kingdom (Judah) as a result of Solomon’s disobedience. During this time, all the kings of Israel did evil in the sight of the Lord so prophets were sent to call the people to repentance before judgement would fall for forsaking the Living God. Elijah has announced that it would not rain until he said it would ! The Lord told him to go hide at the brook Cherith , where he would command the ravens to feed him there. When the brook dried up because of the drought he went to a widow in Zarephath to be provided for. (see lesson posted on 3/20/2013) What an amazing story to encourage our hearts today as we see our provisions drying up before our eyes. Will we trust the LORD?
You will need to have crackers for this lesson…the kids will eat some and glue a piece of one in Elijah’s hand. ***IMPORTANT NOTE: Please make sure you have made a note of any food allergies. Have appropriate substitutes for those with wheat (etc) sensitivities.