PRESCHOOL & KINDERGARTEN KIDS & FAMILIES date
I heard His voice. It was a whisper, but I heard Him loud and clear. Jesus told me, ‘I love you.’ Inspire (for parents) I want to hear God’s voice, but sometimes life is just too loud. Literally. One evening as I was preparing dinner, the baby was crying, my five-year-old son was crashing his toy cars, and the oven timer was beeping, telling me, “The roast chicken is ready and if you don’t hurry it’s gonna burn!” Meanwhile, my cell phone wouldn’t stop ringing and the TV was on too loud. I was overwhelmed.
beeping and the kids screaming, and I closed my eyes. I took a deep breath. I prayed, “Lord, I want to hear Your voice. Above all this noise and commotion. Speak to me, God.” I stood still and took a few more deep breaths. Then I heard His voice. It was a whisper, but I heard Him loud and clear. Jesus told me, “I love you.” I was overwhelmed—this time with joy and peace. God reminded me that I was also someone’s child. His child. I held on to this truth as I opened my eyes and “returned” to my chaotic kitchen.
As a parent of young children, I often feel like I haven’t got a moment to stop and catch my breath. I have these two adorable little people living in my house who always need by Jennifer Cho Salaff me to make meals, give hugs and kisses, wipe noses, clean scrapes, draw baths, help with homework, change diapers, and read bedtime stories. On any given day, I will probably hear voices calling ks to Samuel) “Mommy!” at least a hundred times. l 3 (God Spea ue m Sa 1 : re Scriptu His Voice ts Me to Know an W od G t: in I’ve come to realize it’s during to Main Po low your family these moments that I need to draw designed to al n is re ce ild ur ch so re This fore your s on God for strength. I need to quiet God’s Word be nt in re e pa r tim fo is ve ha God’s plan se au ec B , . ith ch fa my soul, not let the distractions take children’s attend chur rturers of their nu al n tu re iri ild sp ch over, and listen to His voice. So that e to be th iritually, your as you grow sp night, I did just that. we know that l. ally as wel will grow spiritu There I was, in the middle of my messy
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kitchen, with the oven timer beep-beep-
Equip (for parents) After many years of praying for a child, Hannah vowed to give the son she was blessed with into the service of the Lord. Hannah kept her promise, for when Samuel was a young child (some scholars speculate him to be around three or four years old) his parents brought him to the temple of the Lord in Shiloh. They offered a sacrifice and gave him to minister to God under the guidance of the priest, Eli. Here Samuel would learn the ways of worship and acts of service within the temple. Samuel faithfully served the Lord and “continued to grow in stature and in favor with the Lord and with men” (1 Samuel 2:26). In this period of the judges, the Word from the Lord (a spoken message to the people through a prophet) was rare, nor were many people experiencing visions from the Lord. When God began to call Samuel by name, he got up from his bed and ran to Eli, thinking it was the priest who called him. Finally, Eli realized it was the Lord who was calling to Samuel and directed the child as to how he should respond. When the Lord came and stood there, again calling as He had the other times, Samuel responded by saying, “Speak, for your servant is listening” (1 Samuel 3:10). This was the day Samuel was initiated by the Lord as a prophet to Israel. God was with Samuel as he grew up, and the Lord continued to reveal Himself to Samuel through His Word. Samuel faithfully brought God’s Word to the people as His prophet and as the last judge of Israel, all the days of his life.
The Lord causes his miracles to be remembered. He is kind and tender. Psalm 111:4 (NIrV)
Support (for parents & kids) This week, Just for fun, play a “name game” with your family. Have your children stand in a different room than you. Call their names, but in a fun way (for instance, use a funny voice, a silly nickname, or sing). When your children come running to where you are, give them a hug and then send them back to the other room. Continue to call them into your room in different ways a few more times. Tell your children that you’re now going to read them a story about a little boy named Samuel who heard God calling to him (read 1 Samuel 3:8–10). When you finish reading, explain to your children that God wants to talk to them, too! Tell them it may not sound exactly like a human voice, like Samuel heard, but God will speak in different ways. Talk about the ways God will speak to them: the Bible, prayer, His Holy Spirit. Explain to your children that what they just heard is true and a part of The Big God Story. Remind them they’ll learn more about how God wants us to know His voice while they’re at church this week. Then pray and thank God that He speaks to us and wants us to know Him.
© 2011 David C Cook. TruResources are developed in partnership with ROCKHARBOR Church and a national network of family and children’s ministry leaders. All rights reserved.