OBJECTS: Packages of garden seeds.
THEME: Waiting patiently upon God.
SCRIPTURE: But if we hope for what we do not yet have, we wait for it patiently. Romans 8:25 Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. Philippians 4:6
Spring is just around the corner and it is just about time to start planting our gardens. You see I have some packages of seeds with me this morning. How many of you have ever planted a garden? I can remember the very first garden I ever planted. I was a boy about the same age as some of you. I went out into the back yard and found a spot of ground that I thought would make a good spot for a garden. I took a garden hoe, a rake, and shovel and broke up the ground and got it ready to plant the seeds. I took my finger and poked it down into the ground to make a hole. Then I placed some seeds into the holes and carefully covered them with dirt. After all of the seeds were planted, I watered my garden and then went inside. The next morning I went out to the garden. Nothing had come up yet, so I watered it again. The next day I went to check on my garden again. Still nothing! Finally, after several days I gave up on my garden and quit watering it. Nothing ever came of my garden! You see, patience never was one of my strong traits as a child!
Come to think of it, I don't think I have gotten much better as an adult. Occasionally I will see something advertised on TV that looks really great. You know the ads I am talking about. Something like, "Elvis' Greatest Hits on two CD's for only $19.95 plus shipping and handling. Call toll free! All major credit cards accepted!" I am reaching for my credit card and then they drop the bomb! At the bottom of the screen it says, "Allow 6-8 weeks for delivery!" No way! Put the credit card away. I can't wait 6-8 weeks. I want it now!
I'm afraid that we are much the same way with God. We pray and ask God to do something in our life and when we get up the next morning, we expect it to be done! If God hasn't come through in two or three days, we give up on Him. The Bible says that if we hope for what we do not have, we must wait for it patiently. It tells us not to worry about anything, but to make our requests to God in prayer with an attitude of thanksgiving in our heart. He will do what is best for us at just the right time! Let's pray and ask God to help us to be patient as he answers our prayers.
Dear God, give us patience to wait for you to do the things that we ask for in our lives. Help us to remember that you will do what is best for us when the time is right.
NOTE: If you use these lessons in class setting, here is an idea for an activity to go with this lesson. Put several pinto beans in a zip-lock bag with a moist paper towel and seal the bag. Have the children take them home and tape the bags to a window where they will get some sunlight. They should watch the beans each day, making sure that the paper towel remains moist. After a few days, some of the beans will begin to sprout. The children could then transplant them to a pot and watch them grow. What if some of the beans don't sprout? A good opportunity to teach the children that God may not give us everything we ask for!