We are so grateful that you have chosen to take advantage of the resources on this page! Here you will find things like the Bible memory verse, discussion starter questions, and an activity or two that you can facilitate at home. This is your chance to get a feel for what it’s like to be one of our small group leaders, and we hope that you’ll embrace this unique time in the life of your family. As always, we are available to help in any way we can – let us know if there are other resources that would be beneficial to you and your family.
BIG PICTURE QUESTION:
Whom can we trust? We can trust God to take care of us.
God told His people to look at the bronze snake to be healed.
Numbers 20:1-20; 21:4-9
Joshua 1:9 - “Do not be afraid or discouraged, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.”
Form two teams. Give each team eight sheets of black construction paper and a piece of sidewalk chalk. Instruct teams to nominate a “writer” to record the team’s answers. Explain that you will ask a question about today’s Bible story. Teams should agree on an answer, and the writer should write the answer on the paper. When both teams finish, lead them to hold up their answers. If a team answers incorrectly, guide volunteers from each team to look up the Scripture reference to find the correct answer.
- What did the Israelites complain about in the wilderness? (They had no water, Num. 20:2-4)
- What did God tell Moses to do to the rock? (speak to it, Num. 20:8)
- What did Moses do to the rock? (He hit it with his staff, Num. 20:11)
- How did God punish Moses? (God did not allow Moses to enter the promised land, Num. 20:12)
- Which king refused to allow the Israelites to travel through his land? (the king of Edom, Num. 20:14-18)
- Why did God send poisonous snakes to the Israelites? (They sinned by complaining against Him, Num. 21:7)
- What did God tell Moses to put on a pole? (a bronze snake, Num. 21:8)
- How were the Israelites saved? (Anyone bitten by a snake would look at the bronze serpent and live, Num. 21:9)
Tape correct answers to a focal wall to form the shape of a cross. Remind kids that the Israelites who were bitten by the snakes could look at the bronze snake and live.
SAY: The bronze snake reminds us of Jesus. Like the poisonous snakebites caused the people to die, we will all die because of sin. We can’t heal ourselves of sin, but Jesus was lifted up on the cross like the snake on the pole. When we look to Him and trust Him as Lord and Savior, He saves us from our sin and gives us eternal life.
OPTION 1: Snake jump
Lay a long jump rope across the floor and invite two family members to kneel at each end of the rope. Instruct them to hold the ends of the rope and wiggle it back and forth like a snake in the grass. Direct the rest of the family members to take turns jumping across the “snake” and moving to the other side of the room. If the rope touches a player, the player is “bitten.” Pause the game and lead kids to answer the big picture question: Whom can we trust? We can trust God to take care of us. Or kids may say the Bible story main point in order to “heal” the player: God told His people to look at the bronze snake to be healed. Continue play, allowing each family member to take a turn moving the rope from side to side. For an extra challenge, add another rope so kids must jump over multiple snakes.
OPTION 2: “Stained glass” cross
Assist each child in following these steps to create a “stained glass” cross:
- Use tape to stretch and secure an 8-by-10-inch piece of plastic wrap on a table.
- Use a black permanent marker to draw the outline of a cross on the plastic. Then turn over the plastic and use colored permanent markers to color in the cross with various patterns.
- Gently crumple an 8-by-10-inch piece of aluminum foil and then open it flat. Lay the decorated plastic wrap over the foil. Securely tape the art to a piece of poster board.
- How were the Israelites healed? (They looked at the bronze snake.)
- Can people save themselves from sin? (No, only Jesus saves; John 14:6)
- When someone in your family grumbles, stop and thank God for caring for you.
Write words or phrases from the key passage on several index cards and attach them in random order to chairs. Display the key passage poster and guide kids to read it aloud. Then cover the poster. Give kids a length of string and challenge them to wrap the string around the chairs in the correct order of the key passage. Begin by tying one end of the string around the first chair. Then loop the string around other chairs until kids complete the verse. If time allows, instruct kids to say the verse backward as they unloop the string.
SAY: Who said these words? (The Lord said them to Joshua.) God enables His people to be strong and courageous. He is with us, and we can trust Him. Whom can we trust? We can trust God to take care of us.
Distribute journal pages, notebooks, or paper, and pencils. Prompt kids to think about a time they felt dissatisfied or disappointed. Kids may draw a picture or write a few sentences describing the situation. Then guide them to consider how they could be thankful for that same situation.
SAY: The Israelites’ time in the wilderness was difficult, but God helped them in so many ways. He took care of their needs. Even when we are having a tough day, we have so many things to thank God for. Let’s pray. Lead kids in prayer. Thank God for the greatest gift, His Son, who came to earth to rescue people from sin. We can look to Jesus and find eternal life. Confess that our hearts often grumble like the Israelites and ask God to give kids a heart of gratitude for His provisions.