“Consider your Ways!”

haggai b

The phrase  “consider your ways” literally means “put your heart on your roads”, or in other words, consider what direction your life is taking. A good message for all of the LORD’S people today but specifically it was sent to His much beloved remnant…a small group of less than 50,000 Jews  that had pulled up stakes in Babylon ( 537 B.C.)  to return to Jerusalem .  Worship had been joyfully restored , and the foundation of the temple was laid but  this noble purpose was frustrated  after two years, and extinguished by crushing opposition. After lagging fourteen years, Haggai was sent to admonish the children of  Judah and Benjamin for prioritizing their own security and comfortable  “paneled” homes, but neglecting the ruined temple. (Some speculate that the cedar logs from Lebanon mentioned in Ezra 3:7, probably ended up in their private residences….now new wood was to be procured from the mountains) The people were to take stock of their lives and quit making excuses as to why they could not fully obey the LORD…hadn’t they noticed that their crops, livestock and labors were not being blessed ? This was going to take an acknowledgement of the LORD’S dealing with them so they could repent.  Good news!   All of the remnant obeyed the LORD “…and feared His presence.” (“…love the LORD with all your heart, with all your soul…”) and they were willing to be strong and work hard (“…love the LORD with all your strength.” Deuteronomy 6:5) I hope we are all paying attention here… Could we be experiencing “blight” from the LORD…or perhaps we are putting our wages in bags with holes?  Let us “consider our ways” so we can repent and turn to Him with our first love.  Then the LORD will take pleasure in His church, and He will be glorified as He was in the days of Haggai.

Haggai – worksheet

Color page, cutting strip on the end.  (the sample above was printed on ivory parchment  cardstock)  Glue correct scene in the window.  Go over the meaning of the word “remnant”.  Have the kids practice saying Zerubbabel. Optional: Have them write in the verse from 1 Samuel 12:24 in the space below the window.

You may notice a difference in style with the earlier posts.  I wish I could start over and annotate all of the texts on the worksheets and samples but I just learned how to do this (and have still not worked out all of the bugs)!  I had no idea this blog would have a “world-wide” following and I did not accommodate  for the language barrier.  I am trying to take this into account for all future posts.  Hopefully you have some good ideas and can “rewrite” them to suit your needs. Yay white-out!

Watch and Pray

We read the answers to the disciple’s questions , “What will be the sign of Your coming and of the end of the age, and when will the temple be destroyed?” in the Olivet Discourse,   recorded for us in Matthew 24-25, Luke 21 and Mark 13.  The disciples had been admiring the magnificent stones of the temple after Jesus had drawn attention to the munificent “two mite” gift of the poor widow.  She had  cast into the temple treasury her whole living, and now Jesus had shocked the disciples by declaring the future of that great edifice.You will need black construction paper for the eyelashes and pupil.  Use “white-out” to make the “sparkle” in the pupil and curl your eyelashes with a pencil.  Your eyeball is just a circle that will fit in the eye shape that you have cut out.   Use colors to match your kid’s eye color.  For the main page you will need a piece of card stock that is not white because you will glue a white piece of card stock for the “white of their eyes” and you want there to be a contrast. Have kids write the verse as shown. “Therefore KEEP WATCH      because you do not know on what day your LORD will come” Matt 24:42. E-mail me if you have questions about how to place the eyelid.Are you ready for the Lord’s return by watching and praying always “that you may be accounted worthy to escape all these things that shall come to pass, and to stand before the Son Man?” (Luke 21:36)  Don’t be like the scoffers , who walk after their own fleshly desires and say, “Where is the promise of His coming?…Nevertheless, do not let this one fact escape you, beloved, that with the Lord one day is as a thousand years and a thousand years as one day.  The Lord does not delay…but is long-suffering toward you, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.  But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night…”2 Peter 3

Make a red heart out of construction paper and pleat like a fan.  Glue tops of heart to page , leaving 3/4 inch to glue weights. Cut “weights” out of black paper.  I cut 2 shapes…write types of “weights” with silver gel pens( I used anxieties of life, drugs & alcohol, worry, too much stuff, worldliness) and glue to top of heart.  Write verse as shown “Take Heed… Lest your heart     be weighed   down… glue tip of heart into a twine lasso and write the rest of the verse…”and that day come on you suddenly like a trap!  Luke 21:34.

Jesus Cleanses the Temple

Jesus clears out the commerce going on in the Gentile court of the temple at the beginning of His ministry (John 2), and again at the end of His ministry, five days before His death.  He came into the temple after His triumphal entry through Jerusalem, on the back of a colt. This fulfilled the  prophecy of Zechariah 9:9, “…Behold thy King cometh unto you: He is just and having salvation:  He is lowly, and riding upon an ass…” Righteous indignation compelled Jesus to overturn the tables, scatter the coins, and drive out those who were involved in taking advantage of those who were coming to worship God.  He severely denounced  their profiteering by quoting Isaiah and then  welcomed the blind and lame, “and He healed them.”With twine, in which you have knotted the ends, make tiny whips.  (***See note below***)   Tape together and glue to Jesus’ hand.   I used a half  sheet of special paper made by Crayola to have the kids write  with Crayola’s special pens ” My  house shall be called a house of prayer”.  That is an option for you to consider but not necessary.   Color and cut out table, and glue together as in the finished project above.  Draw coins here and there with metallic gel pens. ****Note: Jesus did not use a whip in the 2nd cleansing of the temple, you might want to explain this…If you feel the “knots” are not appropriate for a young child…use the twine plain or leave off altogether as one cleansing did not include a whip) The word for “scourge” in Greek is phragellion (Latin: flagellum) and I have artistically interpreted it to be a substantial tool.  The word for “small cords” can mean either rope or rushes.