"Do not just hear the Word of God and think hearing is enough. DO what it says!" James 1:22

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Lesson 15, Servants of God

1 Samuel 1-2

Our Wrap Up from Mrs. Gettelfinger...

Each student was randomly "labeled" with a sign on their backs by the teachers before our Wrap Up began.  Some of the labels were such things as... "Loser," "Dork," "Snotty Girl," "Nerd," "Geek," "Weird-O," "Freak," "Goof-ball..."  You get the idea.  The students were next instructed to walk around and look at each others' "labels" and then try to guess what their own label said.  They could only ask someone else three questions and those questions could only be "yes or no" answer type of questions.  If, at anytime, the students asked "Am I a..." and they were wrong with their guess, the student had to sit down and wait until the activity was over.

As you can imagine, most of the signs brought about quite a few giggles and even some big belly laughs.  And although it was made VERY CLEAR that these "labels" were NOT ACCURATE of each of the students' characters, the labels were used to prove a very strong point; being laughed at NEVER feels good.  Regardless of how strong or confident we are, being made fun of hurts.  Even if we are strong and confident in our faith... in our Lord Jesus Christ, Himself... hurtful words from others can bring us down.

Hannah knew all about hurtful words.  Penninah pretty much "had it all."  She had the love and care of her husband.  She had many sons and daughters (1 Samuel 1:4b.)  She had plenty of offering to give to the Lord in times of worship.  She even had a sister-wife she could look to for support and sisterhood yet she certainly didn't take advantage of such friendship.   Although she lacked in nothing, Penninah was obviously jealous of Hannah.  Was it their husband, Elkanah's love of Hannah which made Penninah jealous?  Or was it Hannah's seemingly unblemished character that caused Penninah to experience jealousy to the point of being such a nasty person toward Hannah?

The Scriptures we studied for this Servants of God lesson do not tell us WHY Penninah is so cruel to Hannah.  Instead, what the Scriptures tell us is HOW Hannah was effected by Penninah's cruelty.   In 1 Samuel 1:6 we see that Hannah is made to feel "miserable" because of Penninah's nasty behavior.  And we know from verse 7 that all Hannah did was "wept and could not eat."

With grace of self-control, Hannah not once tried to shoot back hateful, hurtful words at Penninah.  Many of us today might even think Penninah certainly would have deserved it if Hannah had shot back.  But the beauty of Hannah's reaction to Penninah's cruelty was that there was really no reaction at all.  Hannah didn't even pray about the cruelty she was experiencing.  She didn't ask God to make Penninah stop.  She didn't ask for wise words to throw back at Penninah.  She didn't ask for Penninah to just go away.  Instead, she stayed focused on two things... her true desire which was to have a son... and God's sovereignty as her LORD (1 Samuel 1:9-10.)

Hannah's tears went beyond Penninah's cruel mistreatment of her.  She was brokenhearted because she had no child to mother.  Every Jewess woman had hopes and dreams of being "head of the home" while her husband was "head of the family."  And even though Hannah had a house... with no "family," there was no "home."  Alhough Elkanah deeply loved Hannah and showed her as much, she wanted so badly to have had a child to love and raise in honor of her husband... and more importantly, in honor of her God.

In many ways, Hannah was a beautiful foreshadowing of Mary, the mother of Jesus.  Although Mary was not mistreated by a family member such as Hannah was by Penninah, can you just imagine how people must have talked behind Mary's back about her pregnancy while she was still yet to be married to Joseph.  I am sure if felt very much like the "labels" on the students' backs.  They had no idea what people were saying "behind their backs," but they could certainly see the reactions of others.  Instead of letting the words and mistreatment of others bring them down, Hannah and Mary "lifted up" our LORD.  (Compare Hannah's song -1 Samuel 1-10 to that of Mary's -Luke 1:46-55.)

We have two lessons to learn from our study this week.  The first lesson is that of Hannah's humility and how she remained focused on the LORD even though her heart was lonely for a child and her spirit was constantly being attacked by her enemy.  She didn't strike back or hold God accountable for her longsuffering.  She depended on God's faithfulness "No one shall suffer miscarriage or be barren in your land; I will fulfill the number of your days" Exodus 23:26.  Indeed, God kept His promise to Hannah.  Not only did He give her a son, He also gave Israel a judge and prophet in Samuel.  This was something the people had lacked for quite a long time at this point in our study.

The second lesson we learn is that of Penninah's behavior toward Hannah.  We can see through Hannah's pain how very hurtful our thoughtless and unloving words can be upon someone else's heart.  Is it any wonder God guides us to guard our tongues... "With it we bless our God and Father, and with it we curse men, who have been made in the similitude of God.  Out of the same mouth comes blessing and cursing. My brothers and sisters, these things should not be so" James 3:9-10.

Will you choose to follow the example of Hannah's heart-prayer and ask God "let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in Your sight?" (Psalm 19:14)  Will you be kind to EVERYONE you meet and remember Hannah when others have not been so kind to you? 

Monday, December 5, 2011

1 Samuel 2:2

Lesson 15

"There is no one holy like the Lord; there is no one besides You; there is no Rock like our God."
1 Samuel 2:2

Monday, November 28, 2011

Ruth 1:16

Lesson 14

"Where you go I will go, and where you stay I will stay.  Your people will be my people and your God my God."  Ruth 1:16

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Blessings to ALL of the
CBS Primary/Junior
students and their fabulous families!

Here is a little blessing we like to bake up at
(and all year long!)

Clean and Dirty Cookies
1 box of cake mix (any flavor... you choose)
1 egg
4oz frozen whipped topping

Mix all together and form 1" sized balls
by rolling each in powdered sugar.
Bake at 350 degrees for 8-10 minutes
(shorter time for chewier cookies,
longer time for crunchier cookies.)

We use a chocolate cake mix and call them
"Dirty Cookies"
because they look "dirty" after baking.
We use a white cake mix or yellow cake mix
and call them "Clean Cookies"
for the same reason.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Lesson 13, Servants of God

Ruth 1

Our Wrap Up from Mrs. Gettelfinger...

What “life lessons” have you learned from the book of Ruth? Do you see a lesson on friendship? How about loyalty? Is there possibly a lesson on finding joy in spite of difficulties? What about a lesson in workmanship and dedication? Perhaps you see a lesson in romance?

I wish we had time to talk about all the life lessons God has packed for us in the Book of Ruth. For now, let’s focus on loyalty and redemption.

I googled “reasons for loyalty” as I put my Wrap Up together and found four very interesting aspects of loyalty. People are loyal for Psychological reasons. This means “it just makes sense” for them to be loyal. For example, if everyone goes to Grandma’s house for Thanksgiving, it’s because it makes sense. Everyone knows how to get to Grandma’s. We’ve been meeting at Grandma’s for years. Grandma is getting older and it just doesn’t make sense for her to travel. So let’s all go to Grandma’s for Thanksgiving. People are loyal for Economic reasons. I do most of my grocery shopping at a particular store because I know I will save money there. You could say I am loyal to that particular store. People are loyal for Functional reasons. If the weather is below freezing outside, we will all be wearing coats to CBS. We are loyal to wear our coats in the winter time because it is functional. And lastly, people are loyal for Mutual Agreement reasons. Your dad goes to work because he made an agreement with his employer to work in return for a paycheck. Your dad is loyal to his job. When I accepted the position of being a CBS leader, I made an agreement with the Lord to study His Word like I’ve never studied before. I want to remain loyal to studying His word because I made an agreement with Him.

Here’s what is interesting about Ruth’s loyalty to Naomi... it does not fit in with any of the four aspects for loyalty I just mentioned. Psychologically (remember, that’s when something just makes sense,) it made more sense for Ruth to return to her family and her homeland. She was more likely to find a husband amongst her own people who would know her and care for her. Economically, Ruth chose to go to a land where there was little hope of her finding much food if any. Functionally, Ruth had no way to function within a society that was most likely going to shun her for being a foreigner. And what mutual agreement had Ruth made with Naomi... none. The mutual agreement Ruth made with Naomi’s son had no meaning with his death. Yet Ruth remained loyal. She stayed with Naomi even though she had nothing to gain and even more to lose. I know each of you love God. Are you loyal because it just makes sense to be loyal to the one true God? Or can you even understand the kind of loyalty Ruth showed when it made no sense at all to be loyal?

Sometimes God doesn’t make sense. “Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see” Hebrews 11:1. That verse doesn’t make much sense if you really think about it. How can we be sure of something we can’t even see?! Yet God doesn’t tell us everything will make sense when we trust Him. He tells us His plan is the only one which makes sense when we have nothing else to trust. “’For I know the plans I have for you,’ declares the LORD, ‘plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future’ Jeremiah 29:11. God’s loyalty to us doesn’t make sense. Even after we put our trust in Him, we still sin against Him. Yet He remains ever faithful... LOYAL.

Many Old Testament heroes show us a picture of Jesus and His redemption. Boaz is one of these heroes. Ancient Israelite law stated that if a man became poor and had to sell his land, it was the responsibility of the poor man’s relative to “redeem” the land or purchase it back for the poor man. Boaz eventually did this for Naomi through his marriage to Ruth. Boaz cared for Ruth even though she was not an Israelite woman. Jesus saves us even though we are not God’s chosen people. Boaz lifted Ruth from her poverty and through his care for her, she was rewarded for her loyalty. Jesus lifts us from our sins and through His love for us, we are rewarded with eternal life.

Ruth made a change that sets an example for all believers today. Ruth believed in the one true God. She left her home, her family, and her friends. And she never returned. She left her old life and took on a new one. Have you been redeemed by Jesus? Are you as loyal to Jesus as Ruth was to the one true God? “when you heard about Christ and were taught about the truth that is in Jesus. You were taught to stop living the way you’ve always lived because it really is bad for you. You were taught to be made new in how you think and behave.” Ephesians 4:21-23.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Psalm 46:1

Lesson 13

"God is our refuge and strength, an everpresent help in trouble."  Psalm 46:1

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Shoebox Autobiographies for November 17

Rachel Miller and
Olivia Mouser
will be sharing their
Shoebox Autobiographies
with us this week!

Thanks, Ethan and Eden!
We look forward to getting to know you better!

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Lesson 11, Servants of God

Judges 9-12

Our Wrap Up from Mrs. Hamilton...

"I have a problem all I have is lima bean seeds, but I really want some strawberries. Strawberries are my favorite! I will just plant the seeds I have and hope for strawberries. Will I get strawberries if I plant these seeds? Why not? The Bible talks about sowing and reaping as well. Gal 6:7-8 Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, that he will also reap. For he who sows to his flesh will of the flesh reap corruption, but he who sows to the Spirit will of the Spirit reap everlasting life. We have studied 2 men this week one who sowed to his flesh and one who sowed to the Spirit. The first man Abimelech wants to become king of Shechem and he doesn’t want anyone to stand in his way. What does he do? Kills off every living heir except for Jotham. What are some attitudes he sowed? Greed, hate, selfishness. Job 4:8 As I have observed, those who plow evil and those who sow trouble reap it.

Did Abimelech get what he wanted a nice peaceful kingdom? No it tells us in Judges 9 :23 God stirred up animosity between Abimelek and the citizens of Shechem so that they acted treacherously against Abimelek. 24 God did this in order that the crime against Jerub-Baal’s seventy sons, the shedding of their blood, might be avenged on their brother Abimelek and on the citizens of Shechem, who had helped him murder his brothers. So the same people that helped him do evil are now turning against him. Why because you reap what you sow. In the end we see that Abimelech kills the people of Shechem and then is killed himself. Not the ending he was expecting. He sowed lima beans hoping for strawberries!

On the other hand we see Jephthah a man who had plenty to be angry about his half brothers kicked him out of the family so they wouldn’t have to share their inheritance with him. Did he get mad and kill all of his brothers? No. Judges 11:3 So Jephthah fled from his brothers and settled in the land of Tob, where a gang of scoundrels gathered around him and followed him. Then when the elders of his hometown come to him what do they ask? Will you fight the Ammonites for us and we will make you our leader? I might have been a bit perturbed at this point. I might have thought, "You kick me out and now want me come and save you?!" But Jephthah once again did the right thing and agreed to help out the people of God. We see in verses 19-27 that Jephthah knew the history of Israel and knew God and relied on Him to win this battle. So what kinds of attitudes do we see Jephthah sowing? Self control, trusting in God, wisdom. Hsa 10:12 Sow for yourselves righteousness, reap the fruit of unfailing love, and break up your unplowed ground; for it is time to seek the LORD, until he comes and showers righteousness on you. So then we see in verses 29&32 that the Spirit of the Lord comes upon him and the Lord gave the enemy into his hands. Why because he reaped what he had sown. He planted strawberries and got strawberries!

We too, have to sow seeds in our lives. Every action and word, we say or do is seed. We have to choose what fruit we want to reap in our love. Are we going to be like Abimelech and so greed, hate, anger, and selfishness or like Jephthah and sow self control, wisdom, and trust in God. You will reap what you sow it is a fact choose to sow the right things in your life. Remember you can’t plant lima beans and get strawberries!

Rom 12:9-19 Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good. Be devoted to one another in brotherly love.  Honor one another above yourselves. Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord. Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. Share with God's people who are in need. Practice hospitality. Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse. Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn. Live in harmony with one another. Do not be proud, but be willing to associate with people of low position. [fn] Do not be conceited. Do not repay anyone evil for evil. Be careful to do what is right in the eyes of everybody. If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone. Do not take revenge, my friends, but leave room for God's wrath, for it is written: "It is mine to avenge; I will repay," [fn] says the Lord.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Lesson 10, Servants of God

Judges 6-8

Our Wrap Up from Mrs. Nelson...

Because of school responsibilities, Danielle Castleman could not be at our Thursday CBS daytime class in person, buts she blessed us with her "Gideon Moment" (as she called it) by writing out her story.

Mrs. Nelson summarizes Danielle's story for us...
"Basically in a nutshell, what she wrote out was how she had felt God calling her to use her singing ability to serve Him, but she thought that she was too young to lead in worship.  She finally accepted the call and began singing for the youth at her church.  Then she was invited to sing during the adult worship services where she continues to serve.  She felt privileged to be able to lead people of all ages in worship before the Lord.  She encouraged the kids to never feel like they were too young to accept a calling by God.  We were so blessed by her words."

Mrs. Nelson then told the students about her own Gideon Story which was her calling into CBS leadership.  She shares...

"At first when I stepped up to serve, my intention was to be a core group leader (not teaching in the children's dept.).  When the Teaching Director called me and told me that they wanted me to serve in children's ministry, I actually put her off for a month or two.  I was waiting on some type of confirmation (because I thought -certainly God's plans were for me to be a core group leader and NOT a children's teacher.)  Finally, I agreed.  Looking back, now I can see how that it was totally God's plan for me to lead in the Chrildren's Department after all (funny how that works ).  Now I am privileged to get to be in the Primary and Junior Deptartment and teaching some amazing students as well as serving alongside some amazing fellow teachers."

Mrs. Nelson asked the class if anyone felt like they had a Gideon story they would like to share with the class.  A young lady in Mrs. Nelson's class said that she felt like God was calling her to be a missionary.  She shared that she was still waiting on confirmation of this calling because being a missionary has never been "on her radar."  A young girl in Mrs. Gettelfinger's class shared that she felt God calling her to be friends with someone who was not the easiest person to get along with.

Mrs. Nelson also explained to the classes "that if God calls us to do something, He will equip us for it and will be faithful in seeing us through... just like Gideon."

Friday, October 14, 2011

Wynne's Easiest Ever Peanut Butter Cookies

My family has a really fun tradition
when it comes to cooking new recipes.
If everyone in the family REALLY
enjoys the new recipe,
we decide who likes it the best by
how much they go on and on about it....
by how much they thank the one who cooked the dish...
and by how much they ask for it again.
Then, whoever likes it the most,
we name it AFTER that person!
What a fun way to honor
each member in the family!

So these cookies were discovered by
my super sweet and very talented-in-the-kitchen, Wynne!
We ALL love these cookies!
And since Wynne discovered the recipe
and she bakes these cookies
We decided to name them after her.
Wynne's Easiest Ever Peanut Butter Cookies!
2 eggs
2 Cups sugar
2 Cups peanut butter
(smooth or chunky... it's up to you)

Mix all together.  Scoop into about a tablespoon sized ball and place on baking sheet 1" apart.  Press with the flat side of a fork.  With the same fork, cross the previous marks and press again.  Bake at 350 degrees for about 8-10 minutes or golden (longer for crunchy crunchy.)

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Lesson 9, Servants of God

Judges 4-5

Our Wrap Up from Mrs. Gettelfinger...

Once again the Israelites did evil in the sight of the Lord by serving Baal, and suffered as a result by having to serve their ungodly oppressors.

Deborah, an obviously godly woman, prophesies to Barak that God is telling him to “Go and defend your people!” God’s words through Deborah promise to “lead Sisera, the commander of Jabin’s army, with his chariots and his troops to the Kishon River and give him into your hands” (Judges 4:6-7.)

Barak refuses to pursue the enemy without having Deborah with him. We don’t really know Barak’s reasons for his request of her accompaniment. Perhaps because of her being one of God’s judges, he knew her faith was greater than anyone else's. It sure is nice to have someone of great faith with us when we experience trouble in our lives. Perhaps he lacked confidence in himself and needed Deborah’s encouragement by saying, “You got this, dude! You can do this!” OR perhaps he lacked faith in HOW God would accomplish this task. Think about it... at this point in history, after Ehud had died, the Israelites had been in oppression under king Jaben for TWENTY YEARS.

And what are we to say of Jael? “Way to go, girlfriend!” Sometimes people read about the women of the Bible and see them as being “property” of their husbands or at the least, submissive to their husband’s rules. Jael shows the perfect example of knowing who the One True God is and how we are to be submissive to Him FIRST. Her husband probably would not have suggested Sisera be killed. Jael’s people and Sisera’s people were at peace with each other. But Jael doesn’t stop to consult her husband. We know from Deborah’s prophecy that Jael is called by God when He said, “for the LORD will deliver Sisera into the hands of a woman” (Judges 4:9.)

Before our Core Group time, the students were given homemade hot cocoa to enjoy while getting started in sharing their lesson with each other.  Some students didn't like the flavor.  Some complained about it being too hot.  Most seem to like it.  But ALL agreed about how RECEIVING it made them FEEL.  Some of the ways they described how they felt were... warm inside (without having even drank it,) happy, surprised, special.  These were the exact feelings Jael intended to create for Sisera when she brought him milk instead of water.  And although the purpose for her intentions were to carry out a Godly mission in battle, the point is that what she did caused Sisera to TRUST her.

The Bible tells us of many different people in many different situations. At times, the people seem to have done everything just right. At other times, things are not so perfect.

Barak was willing to follow God’s orders, IF... if Deborah would go with him. This is similar to Moses’ reaction at the burning bush. Moses would go confront Pharaoh, IF... if his brother Aaron could do all the talking (Exodus 3:10-14.)

In both cases God had promised a wonderful outcome. (Here we go again... talking about God’s promises.) God promised in both situations that HE would do the work. Still both men were very hesitant to obey. Each man lacked enough faith to do things 100% God’s way. Yet despite their lack of faith, both Moses and Barak were certainly used by God. Surely each man DID have SOME faith. The Bible says we can do great things with faith as small as a mustard seed (Matthew 17:20.)

Few people in the Bible practice perfect faith. And those who had great faith, usually did not practice it all the time. (Compare Genesis 12:4 to Genesis 12:12. Remember this was when God told Abram to “Go! Go from your family and live in a land I am promising to you and your descendants.” And then at some point on the journey, Abram lied to the Egyptians about Sarai being his wife.)

We should be encouraged by the words spoken by a desperate father in Mark 9:24, “I do believe! Help me overcome my unbelief!” This is a prayer that every person can and should pray. Faith is not something we can just pick up and set down. Faith is a gift from God (Ephesians 2:8)

“God’s Grace has been GIVEN to me... keep in mind the amount of FAITH God has GIVEN to you.” -Romans 12:3

When you find yourself with questions or worries, will you ask God to strengthen your faith? Ask God to “highlight” examples of great faith for you to follow. Ask for these examples to be "highlighted" in God's Word as well as real people in your own life.  Will you ask God to make you like these examples... like the example of Abraham. “He was absolutely sure that God had the power to do what He had promised.” -Romans 4:21

Remember, God’s promises are trustworthy... and powerful.

reference: Bible Lessons for Kidz

Monday, October 10, 2011

Judges 5:3

 Lesson 9

"I will sing to the Lord, I will sing; I will make music to the Lord, the God of Israel."  Judges 5:3 

Friday, October 7, 2011

BBQ Baskets... and Birds in a Blanket

We LOVE these at the Gettelfinger home!

BBQ Baskets

1 pkg refridgerated biscuit dough
1 pkg beef bar-B-que (or homemade)
1 pkg shredded cheddar cheese

Push each biscuit dough into a regular sized muffin tin so that there is a small "well" in the middle of the biscuit.  Bake biscuits for 1/2 the time directed on the package.  Using a teeny tiny glass or jar, push each bubbled-up biscuit down directly in the center.  Fill each "well" with BBQ.  Top with a heaping TBsp of cheddar cheese.  Return to oven and continue baking for remainder of time directed on the package.

I like to save some of the BBQ back to add to my basket once it is finished baking.  Mmmmm...

Birds in a Blanket

1 pkg refridgerated crescent rolls
1 pkg precooked turkey sausage links

Wrap each sausage link in a crescent roll triangle.  Bake as directed.  How easy is that?!  YUM!!!

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Lesson 8, Servants of God

Judges 1-3

Our Wrap Up from Mrs. Hamilton...

Mrs. Hamilton began our Wrap Up today by showing us a hat that belongs to her husband.  This wasn't just ANY hat... it was HIS FAVORITE hat.  She told us he REALLY REALLY loved this hat.  She said she knew she had to take really good care of it so that she was sure to get it back home to him.  She said he'd be SO SAD if anything happened to the hat.  Then... Mrs. Hamilton "tossed" the hat behind her and it fell to the floor.  Hm.

God gave the Israelites His commands and it was His desire that they followed and took good care of those commands.  Joshua 23:6

Then Mrs. Hamilton remembered she "tossed" the hat somewhere but didn't realized where it went.  A bit panicked, she knew she needed to find that hat!  Afterall, it was her husband's FAVORITE hat!  So this time, she "tossed" it to the ground in front of her.  At least there, she told us, she would know where it was.

Last week we witnessed Israel do good while Joshua and the elders were alive... Joshua 24:31.  But then we witnessed something very sad.  We learned in Judges 2:10 "...after that whole generation had been gathered to their ancestors (after they died,) another generation grew up who knew neither the LORD not what He had done for Israel."  An entire generation was not being taught about the Lord and now we begin to see the consequences of not following God.  Judges 2:11

The Lord's commands were no longer important to Israel because the very commands cherished by Joshua's generation were no longer being TAUGHT to Israel.

Mrs. Hamilton asked the students to name some things that were very important to them.  Some answers were... pets, posters, rare items, musical instruments...  Mrs. Hamilton reminded the students of the hat which she had carelessly "tossed" to the ground.  She had said this hat was really IMPORTANT to her husband.  She asked the students if they thought the hat was "important" to HER?  Of course not!  If the hat had been important to her (like it was important to her husband,) she would never have just tossed it to the floor like she did.  Mrs. Hamilton made it clear that when we value something or when something is IMPORTANT to us, we TAKE GREAT CARE of these things.

Mrs. Hamilton told the students she had decided that even though the hat doesn't mean much to her, her husband is VERY IMPORTANT to her.  Therefore, she CHOOSES to take great care of the hat because she knows it is important to her husband.

There were consequences for Israel forgetting about God and His commands.  We're told in Judge 3:8 that "The anger of the LORD burned against Israel..." and even more.  But our kind and compassionate God doesn't turn away from Israel.  Judges 3:9  This shows us a "pattern" of forgettful people and a faithful God.

Mrs. Hamilton challenges us to not be a forgettful people but to make AND KEEP God our first and foremost Priority of our lives.  Ephesians 1:3

By choosing to keep God most important in our lives, we will avoid our own destruction.  1 John 1:9

No matter what... will you choose to make God truly #1 in your life?  Psalm 103:1-13

Monday, October 3, 2011

Psalm 22:28

Lesson 8

"Dominion belongs to the Lord and He rules over the nations."  Psalm 22:28

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Shoebox Autobiographies for October 6

Ethan Schreiber
will be sharing their
Shoebox Autobiographies
with us this week!

Thanks, Ethan and Eden!
We look forward to getting to know you better!

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Lesson 7, Servants of God

Joshua 22-24

Our Wrap Up from Mrs. Nelson...

The students were put into groups for the first part of our Wrap Up today.  Mrs. Nelson gave a photo-copied photograph to each of the groups.  The students in each group were instructed to study the photos and then come up with seomthing about the people in the photos.  Mrs. Nelson suggested they even "make up" facts about the people in their photo.  Then she told them to be ready to share with the rest of the group what they had determined about the people in their photos.

Many of the assumptions made by the students were made based solely on how the people looked physically and/or emotionally.  Other assumptions were made purely out of silliness and fun.  It was quite comical to hear some of the made-up "facts" shared by some of our more "creative" students.

Mrs. Nelson presented her Wrap Up with a focus on the confrontation by Israel to the Two and a half Tribes when the Two and a half Tribes built the Altar of Witness at the River Jordan's edge.  Mrs. Nelson pointed out how the behavior of the Israelites in judging the Two and a half Tribes actions to build the altar was very similar to the judgements made over our photos.  We can't truly know the emotions or situations of the people in the photos without hearing directly from the people in the photos.

AFter the Israelites heard directly from the Two and a half Tribes, it was understood that the actions and motives of building the altar were for purposes of PLEASING God and not to disobey Him.  The Israelites chose to WRONGLY JUDGE the Two and a half Tribes before they chose to LOVE their fellow servants of God.

Jesus commands us to love NOT ONLY our neighbors but our enemies as well... "But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you,"  Matthew 5:44.  Jesus also tells us that we will be judged the same way which we judge others... "For in the same way you judge others, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you,"  Matthew 7:2 and "Do not judge, and you will not be judged. Do not condemn, and you will not be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven,"  Luke 6:37.  Mrs. Nelson related to the students how difficult it is to pray for and love our enemies, especially people who are mean to us.  She presented a question in this... "How do we do that?  How do we do something so difficult as to pray for or even love people who seem to be difficult to love?"

We were directed to Joshua's words in chapter 24 of Joshua...  "But if serving the LORD seems undesirable to you, then choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods your ancestors served beyond the Euphrates, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you are living. But as for me and my household, we will serve the LORD,"  Joshua 24:15.

Will CHOOSE to SERVE the Lord and DO AS JESUS DID by loving instead of judging?

Mrs. Nelson shared some very interesting photos with the entire class from a book titled "Journey's with the Messiah" where Jesus is portrayed as "serving" people with His love.   Here are just a few of these photos...



Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Cupcakes IN A CONE

Thank you, Kayleb, for bringing in such a
yummy and delish snack
for our CBS class last week!

As promised... here is the recipe, courtesy of
Kayleb's mum, Cyndee Gilmore.
Thanks, Cyndee!

2/3 cup butter
1 3/4 cup sugar
2 eggs
1 1/2 tsp vanilla
1 1/4 cup milk
1 tsp salt
2 1/2 tsp baking powder
2 3/4 cup flour
Mix together in order given. Pour into jumbo ice cream cones filling to about 3/4 full. Bake at 350 for about 30 minutes. Cool completely. Frost with Chocolate Frosting and sprinkles.

Chocolate Frosting
2 squares unsweetened chocolate- 2 oz
2 TBLS butter
Melt over medium heat and then add 3 TBLS water or milk
2 Cups powdered sugar
Spread over cupcakes.

(Seriously, the icing is my absolute favorite!  I mean really, I could just sit and eat a bowl of this icing... A... MAZ... ING! he he he)

Monday, September 26, 2011

Joshua 24:24

 Lesson 7

"We will serve the Lord our God and obey Him."
Joshua 24:24

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Shoebox Autobiographies for September 29

Nathan Rich
Ethan Schreiber
will be sharing their
Shoebox Autobiographies
with us this week!

Thanks, Nathan and Ethan!
We look forward to getting to know you better!

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Lesson 6, Servants of God

Joshua 13-21

Our Wrap Up from Mrs. Gettelfinger...

Today for our Wrap Up, I wore one of my husband’s suit coats but acted as though it was mine. In opening, I looked into a mirror and seemed very displeased with the jacket. I spoke aloud saying, “I’ve had this jacket for nearly an entire year and I still don’t like it. I thought I liked it when I purchased it. I’ve worn it a few times and I’ve never felt quite comfortable in it. I should have taken it back to the store a long time ago.” Then I removed the jacket and motioned as if I were hanging it in my closet.

What keeps us from “owning” or “claiming” or “counting on” God’s promises?

In chapters 13 and 14 of Joshua, God tells Joshua there is still land to be taken for the people of Israel. Joshua is getting older. Everyone knows that with age comes wisdom but weakness also comes with age. It’s just how life is. Yet Joshua held tightly to God’s promises made not only to Moses but all the way back to Abraham in Genesis 12 when God said to Abram, “I will make you into a great nation...” Remember the last time I offered our Wrap Up I told you “God’s promises are trustworthy and powerful.” Joshua believed that. He OWNED God’s promises. He CLAIMED God’s promises. He knew he could COUNT ON God’s promises.

The Israelites, on the other hand, spent 800 years dreaming of a land of milk and honey... 400 years from Abraham to Joseph and 400 years in Egypt. For 15 generations, Israel had dreamt of living in Canaan. Now the people were on the verge of fulfilling that dream. Their greatest obstacle was not the Jordan River. It was not the well-fortified cities. Their greatest obstacle was fear. This is why God repeats Himself so many times in the first chapter of Joshua to “be strong and courageous!”

In chapter 14 of Joshua we discover that Caleb courageously OWNS God’s promise of land made to Caleb through Moses. Despite Caleb’s age, he claims in verse 11-12 that he is “just as strong today as the day Moses sent me out...” Sometimes, CLAIMING God’s promises take just as much strength as going into battle. After establishing a place of worship in Shiloh, Joshua even speaks to the people of Israel in verses 3 of chapter 18 about the fear they were experiencing when he says, “How long will you wait before you begin to take possession of the land that the Lord, the God of your fathers, has given you?”

At this point in our Wrap Up, I selected three students to stand. I told each of them to take of a piece of their garments (shirt, pants, shoes) so I could take them home and give them to my children. In all seriousness, that would be absurd. They wouldn’t give me these pieces of clothing because these are pieces they NEED and they OWN them. Their shirts, pants, and shoes BELONG to them.

God's promises BELONG to us.  God wants us to “own,” or “claim,” or “count on” His promises.

As Christ’s followers, we have three “blanket promises.”

We’re promised God’s power. “But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you.” (Acts 1:8) Among other blessings that come to us when we accept Jesus Christ is the gift of the Holy Spirit. Every Christ follower is given the indwelling presence of the Spirit to empower us to live Christlike lives. The word for “power” in the original language is dunamis, which is the same root word used in dynamite. God has placed spiritual dynamite in us so we’ll have the strength to overcome every scary challenge we face.

We’re promised God’s provision. “And my God will meet all your needs according to the riches of his glory in Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 4:19) God never asks us to do something without also giving the resources to do it. This means if God calls you to forgive, he’ll give you the strength to do it. If God calls you to step out in faith, He will provide what you need to take that step.

We’re promised God’s presence. “And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” (Matthew 28:20) Christ followers always have Christ with them. The promise to Joshua is repeated for all believers in Hebrews 13:5: “Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you.” It’s comforting to know we never need to go through life alone.

We learn in chapter 20 of Joshua how God promises refuge. How comforting to see that the cities of refuge are set up in a way that “surrounds” the Israel nation! And as our lesson points out, this is a fore-shadow of how Jesus surrounds us as our Refuge. Once again we see yet another promise of God fulfilled in chapter 21 when God provides land, shelter, and refuge for the Levites.

Our Wrap Up was ended with me going back to my closet to pull out the jacket I had worn earlier. I had decided to return the jacket to the store (set up on stage with the assistance of a sales clerk –Mrs. DeWitt.) I explained to the sales clerk that I wished to exchange the jacket for one that was more suitable for my size and personality. I also told the clerk that I had had the jacket for nearly a year and that it had been worn a few times. Looking to the students as though I was fearful the sales clerk would turn me away, she cheerfully spoke up and said, “Well, for heaven’s sake! What took you so long?! Let’s go find you a better jacket.” Giving the students a “how about that” sort of look, I selected a new jacket and ended the Wrap Up with the following...

God, we could say, is like a supersized department store. God makes these incredible promises, but many times we can’t bring ourselves to believe they are true or that they are directly meant for us. When we are overcome by fear or despair, we eventually cry out to God. That’s when we claim His promises and the Lord always comes through. But along the way I wonder if God sometimes thinks, "For heaven’s sake, what took you so long?!"

Will you search God’s Word today for promises He makes directly to you? And just as you own the clothes on your body, will you OWN the promises of God?

reference: ChristianStandard

Monday, September 19, 2011

Deuteronomy 6:18

Lesson 6

"Do what is right and good in the Lord's sight, so that it may go well with you."  Deuteronomy 6:18

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Lesson 5, Servants of God

Joshua 9-12

Our Wrap Up from Mrs. Hamilton...

Mrs. Hamilton presented a big ziplock plastic bag of puzzle pieces for our Wrap Up today.  She shared with the students her enjoyment for puzzles and asked if they enjoyed putting together puzzles as well.  She asked if she gave them the bag full of puzzle pieces (1,000 pieces) if they could put it together with ease or if it would be of an even greater challenge not having a photo of the puzzle as their guide.  Everyone agreed it would be too much of a challenge to put the pieces together without the photo.

Our lives are a lot like the bag of puzzle pieces.  We only see bits and pieces of our lives in front of us.  God, however, sees the whole picture of our lives.  This week we learned how Israel was decieved by the Gibeonites.  We know from Joshua chapter 9 how Israel was easily deceived because they failed to seek council with the Lord.  Israel only saw what was right in front of them and quickly made their decision based on what they could see.  God sees the entire picture and God had already told Israel to subdue the entire land.

We make decisions in our lives every day.  Mrs. Hamilton asked the students for some of their every day decisions.  -what kind of attitude we will choose that day... -what to eat that day... -whether to even get out of bed that day... -what to wear... Then she asked the students if they seek God's council with these decisions.  "But those who seek the Lord shall not lack any good measure."  Psalm 34:10  "But those who seek the Lord understand everything."  Proverbs 28:5

Israel should have sought God's decision on how to deal with the Gibeonites.  Because they didn't seek His council and His decisions, they were easily deceived and tricked into a peace treaty.  God sees the entire picture of our lives and He knows what's best for us.  He knows what is best for YOU.  HE LOVES YOU.

Will you choose to trust God with the best answers to all of the decisions you face each day?  Because He sees the entire picture of your life, are you willing to trust Him with the bits and pieces that are placed before you?

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Lesson 4, Servants of God

Joshua 6-8

Mrs. Gettelfinger was absent today due to a case of food poisoning.  Pray for her to our mighty Physician, Comforter, and Healer.

Monday, September 5, 2011

Proverbs 3:5-6

Lesson 4

"Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding.  In all your ways acknowledge Him and He will make your path straight."  Proverbs 3:5-6

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Lesson 3, Servants of God

Joshua 3-5

Our Wrap Up from Mrs. Gettelfinger...

As we began the Wrap Up today, everyone was matched up with two other students (or teachers) so that we had several groups of three people in each group.  Then we participated in an activity of TRUST.  One person stood in the middle of the other two.  The one in the middle had to FALL into the arms of another while the third person held the feet of the person fallimg so they could not step out of the fall.  TRUST plays a huge part of this activity.

The students were asked if they had ever been to Holiday World, our local theme park in Santa Claus, IN.  Many said they had been there.  Many had not.  I explained to everyone that if they had decided to take a trip to HW for the weekend (and let's say they had never been there at all,) they could follow me and I would get them there safely.  I was actually camping at a nearby campground that very weekend.  I shared how my family LOVES visiting Holiday World and that we all have season passes.  I told the students we had been visiting HW since my daughter was just one year old... and she is now almost 15 years old.

So we're proposing the students are taking a trip to HW and they had never been there before.  They're going to follow me and trust that I will get them there safely and surely.  HOW can they trust that I will get them there surely?  How can they truly believe I know the way to HW?

Many of the students were hesitant to answer at first but after being reminded of all the information I shared with them (above,) they began to get the idea.
-My family LOVES visiting Holiday World.
-We have season passes which tells you we've been there many times.
-We've been visiting for the past 15 years.
-We have a camping trip planned that very weekend.

In verse 5 of Joshua chapter 3, Joshua told the people of Israel to "consecrate themselves because the next day God was going to do amazing things."  The people trusted Joshua because they knew many facts about Joshua (as we learned in the first week's lesson through the intro to our study.)  They knew he was Moses's aide.  They knew he could be trusted because he was one of the two original spies who first encouraged Israel to take over the land of Canaan as God had commanded. We know from vv. 16-18 of Joshua chapter 1 the people knew they could trust Joshua.  I believe the people of Israel trusted Joshua and consecrated themselves that day.

God's promises are trustworthy and powerful.

The priests trusted God when they stepped out in faith by placing their feet into a flood stricken, quickly flowing Jordan River.  They probably felt very much like our students felt during our activity of trust when they had to hold, catch, and fall.  "Can I really do this?  Are they really going to catch me?  Is this really going to work?"  The priests KNEW they could TRUST God because of the promises God had already fulfilled in the lives of His people.  Listen... if Rahab -a very badly behaved Gentile woman- admits in vv. 9-10 of Joshua chapter 2 of hearing about God drying up the Red Sea as well as the defeat at Sihon and Og and two kings of the Amorites, then we KNOW God's own people knew these exact same things as well as many other promises God gave and kept.  The priests knew they could trust God and His promises.

God's promises are trustworthy and powerful.

Choosing obedience is simply a REFLEX ACTION to trust.  If you've ever went to the doctor for a physical and had him or her tap your knee, you know that your knee REFLEXES AND KICKS without you even moving it yourself.  It's a REFLEX ACTION that just happens.  That's how it is when we CHOOSE to obey.  Israel trusted God.  They crossed the Jordan River safely onto dry land and then... they had a reflex action... they CHOSE to obey by building a memorial and observing the Passover just as Moses instructed in Exodus 12:24 when he said, "Obey these instructions as a lasting ordinance for you and your descendants."

God's promises are trustworthy and powerful.

Our study of lesson 3 wraps up with God sending an angel to encourage Joshua.  The angel basically told Joshua this... "Dude, God's doing this for you and you have been obedient.  Great job!  Now let's get ready to rumble!"

Has God ever asked you to do something that would cause you to "step out" in great faith -and TRUST- as the Israelites did when they crossed the Jordan?  Is God asking you to do something through which your example might bring others closer to Him (just as Rahab and her family was brought closer to the God of Israel?)  Something like participating with your voice and singing during the worship time... or singing more than you already do (such as helping to LEAD the worship time.)  Something like answering more of the core group questions if you're not use to answering many or any of the questions.  Something like praying out loud or praying more during our prayer time with everyone.  I could go on and on with what God might be asking you to trust Him with but only YOU know for certain.  If you're not sure, pray and ask God how He can utilize you and bless you as He blesses others through you.  

How far are you willing to go to trust God's trustworthy and powerful promises?      

Monday, August 29, 2011

Joshua 1:9

Lessons 3

"Have I not commanded you?  Be strong and courageous.  Do not be terrified.  Do not be discouraged.  The Lord your God will be with you wherever you go."  Joshua 1:9

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Lesson 2, Servants of God

Joshua 1-2

Our Wrap Up from Mrs. Nelson...

Today Mrs. Nelson helped us to see more clearly how Joshua was a "good boy."  He followed Moses.  He was filled with the Spirit.  And he was obedient to God.  He was a "good boy."  Joshua served God.

The people of Israel were not always "good" people.  In Lesson 2 of our study of the Servants of God, we see how they followed Joshua because he exceeded Moses.  The people served Joshua.

Because of her type of profession, Rahab was not considered a "good" person.  Yet in verse 11 of chapter 2, Rahab declares our God to be "God in heaven above and on earth beneath." She hid the spies of Israel and assisted them to safety.  Rahab served God's people.

Our service to others SERVES GOD.

Through our continued study of The Servants of God, we will see how God uses people to fufill His plan.  Well behaved or not-so-well behaved people; God uses everyone to fulfill His plan.

"God doesn't call to service those who are well equipped.  God well equips those who are called to service."

Mrs. Nelson continued by giving many examples of "small" people of the Bible whom God used to accomplish "BIG" tasks.  We can find one of these examples in how David became king via 1 Samuel.  David's humble beginning in serving our Lord is the perfect example of why we should never say, "Well, I'm only ten years old... God isn't going to use me yet."  God is using you RIGHT NOW by setting an example to younger siblings of how to be loving and caring... to set an example of how to be respectful to older siblings... to set an example of how to be obedient to parents.  These ways of service to God are going to teach younger siblings of how to be loving and caring to others... older siblings of how to respect their parents... and parents of how to be more obedient to God.

God knows exactly who each and every one of you are!  This is proven in the following verses given to us by Mrs. Nelson...

Psalm 100:3
Psalm 139:13-14
Jeremiah 1:5

God knows exactly what you are able to do and what you are not able to do.  There is no excuse for having an attitude of "I can't."  And this can be proven in the following verses...

Philippians 2:13
Philippians 4:13

Mrs. Nelson encourages you to pray and when you pray, ask God, "How can You use me?"  More importantly, when you pray... do it with a WILLING HEART.  Because He WILL use your service.  His blessings will come when you serve Him WILLINGLY.  (Joshua 1:7, 1 Sameul 12:24, Psalm 22:30)

"SERVE HIM with wholehearted devotion and with a WILLING mind, for the LORD searches every heart and understands every desire and every thought." 1 Chronicles 28:9

"Therefore, they are before the throne of God and SERVE HIM day and night in his temple; and he who sits on the throne will shelter them with his presence."  Revelation 7:15 

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Intro to the Servants of God Study


I feel so good...


I knew I would!
OOOH, I feel so good!

Welcome back to CBS, everyone!
How exciting to be studying
The Servants of God
this year with so many familiar faces
as well as some new faces!

The Servants of God study will let us
take a peek into the lives of
Joshua, Judges, Ruth, and 1st & 2nd Samuel.
Visit here often and enjoy
a breif summary of our weekly Wrap Ups.
Parents, this site will give you the opportunity
to better share our study with your student.
Students, this site will help our study
"sink in" deeper to your hearts.
you will find memory verse assistance here
yummy and delicious recipes
fun jokes...
for Mrs. Gettelfinger's class,
(We are ALL looking forward to our shoeboxes!)

My prayer is for this site to bless you
more than God already does through
His wonderful Word
and Community Bible Study.
Be blessed!