Submitted by Janet Smith
|Object:||Rainbow Fish book|
|Scripture:||Colossians 3:13-14 and Matthew 18:11-22|
Remember the Rainbow Fish who taught us about sharing by giving his shiny scales to his fish friends. In the 2 nd book, Rainbow Fish and his friends were very happy and had lots of tiny delicious shrimp to eat and lots of friends to play with. It was a wonderful life! One day a gentle old whale decided to join the fish friends. He stared at them for hours admiring their shimmering scales and eating shrimp.
Before long some of the fish noticed the whale staring at them, and one of them who was in a particularly bad mood said to the others, “Why is that old whale staring at us” Who knows what he’s thinking!” “Look at that giant mouth. He’s eating all the shrimp!” “What if he eats it all up and then comes after us?” And he caused all the fish to become suspicious and afraid of the whale.
Then one day the whale swam really close to the fish and one of the fish said “Look out the wicked whale is after us!” The whale heard him and it hurt his feelings, but then he got mad and he flipped his giant tail, scattering the fish in every direction. He chased the fish all the way back to their cave. Then the whale swam back and forth trapping the fish in their cave. But after a while he calmed down and disappeared.
The fish grew hungry and came out of the cave to eat, but all the shrimp were gone because of all that splashing & quarrelling! Before, there was always enough food for everybody but now they had nothing. Rainbow fish decided they must make peace with the whale. He went to the whale and told him their fight was all just a big mistake and they talked for a long time. The whale told Rainbow Fish how hurt and angry their words had made him and the fish told the whale they were afraid because they thought the whale might eat them. The whale told them he only watched them because their shiny scales were so pretty. Once they understood each other, they forgave each other and the fish and the whale swam off together to find new hunting grounds. Before long they were the best of friends and none of them could remember what their terrible fight was all about.
Sometimes we’re like the rainbow fish and the whale. We get scared; we misunderstand each other; and we get our feelings hurt--so we say or do more things that hurt each other. And lots of times, unlike the Rainbow Fish, we don’t take the time to talk to each other and try to figure out how to forgive each other and be friends again. Sometimes, we stay angry so long we can’t even remember why we’re mad at each other in the first place! And we can’t show the love of Jesus to anybody else as long as we’re mad at each other .
The Bible talks a lot about forgiveness. Colossians 3:13-14 “Bear with each other and forgive whatever grievances you may have against one another. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity.”
Prayer: Lord, help us remember everybody has a bad day now and again. Teach us to think the best of people. When people hurt us, teach us to forgive them just like Jesus forgives us, and not to hold grudges that rob us of the joy of our friendships and Your fellowship. And Lord most of all show us how to love each other like Jesus loves us. In the name of Jesus, Amen.
Copyright © Janet Smith
Used by Permission