May 31, 2020 Post

GREETING

You will come and pray to me.  And I will listen to you. ~Jeremiah 29:12

Greetings!

As we prepare to usher in the month of June, I hope the warmer weather finds you and your family healthy and well.    While the month may not consist of all that we anticipated and expected with school field days, year-end field trips and celebrations, graduations and vacations, the SON continues to shine and His love to warm the hearts of those who love Him.  May His light shine upon you as you talk and commune with Him during this unfamiliar and different times.

I miss you and look forward to the day when we will all be together again.

Peace, Blessings and Love,

Pastor Schalm

 


 

THE STORY

The Very Smelly Belly

~ Glenys Nellist

Jonah slowly opened his eyes and tried to figure out where he was.  He could hear the sound of gurgling, bubbling water.  He could feel something slimy, slippery, and wet under his feet.  But it was so dark that he could not see a thing.  And what was that smell?  It had to be the most disgusting, nasty, horrible fishy smell that Jonah had ever smelled.  Where on earth was he  Was he in a cave?  No.  Was he in a hole?  No.  Was he in a great big fish? Yes!  Jonah was inside the very smelly belly of a very large fish!  How on earth had he gotten there?  Then, Jonah remembered…

Hadn’t God asked Jonah to go to Nineveh, the horrible town, to give the people a message?  Hadn’t Jonah said no?  Hadn’t he run away from God and got on board that ship?  And when that big storm came, hadn’t Jonah jumped overboard?  Yes – Jonah remembered now.  He fell with an enormous plop into that deep, dark, cold water.  Then that huge mouth came toward him, swallowing him whole!  He was in a great big fish!  What should he do now?  Jonah decided he would pray.

Jonah wobbled to his knees, held his nose, and prayed.  “Thank you, God for sending this big fish to rescue me.  Thank you for listening to my prayers.  I know you can hear me, even though I am in the belly of a fish.  Thank you for showing me I should do what you ask – to go to Nineveh and take your message to the people.”

Jonah stopped.  The smelly belly started to rumble and quake.  Suddenly, the fish gave an enormous hiccup.  Jonah was catapulted out through the fish’s mouth, did several flying somersaults, and landed upside-down on a beach.

Jonah got up, brushed the sand from his knees, peeled away the seaweed that was wrapped around his head, and set off for Nineveh.

God’s Wonderful Words to You

You will come and pray to me.  And I will listen to you. ~Jeremiah 29:12

 


 

MESSAGE

 

1.)  Have you ever chosen not to follow directions from your teachers or parents(Allow responses)

2.)  Why didn’t you want to follow the directions?(allow responses)

Sometimes we might not want to follow directions because we don’t understand why we must do something. We also might disagree about it, or we might even be afraid.

Jonah didn’t want to do what God wanted him to do. He chose to disobey God, and he had consequences.  God wanted Jonah to go to a place called Nineveh, but Jonah didn’t want to go!

God really needed Jonah’s help because He wanted to help the people of Nineveh. They were making bad choices, and God wanted Jonah to go warn them and help them turn their lives around and worship God. Jonah didn’t want to go because he didn’t want to help the people that lived in Nineveh. He didn’t want to love them.  God helped Jonah learn a very important lesson about listening to and following God’s plans.

3.) When you choose not to follow directions from your teachers or parents, what might happen?(allow answers)

Well, God had an even bigger way to get Jonah’s attention! When Jonah refused to follow God’s directions, God used a giant whale to get his attention!  When Jonah was trying to run away from God, God used a whale to swallow Jonah! He stayed in the whale for 3 days and 3 nights. During that lonely time, Jonah did a lot of praying. He told God that he was ready to listen and that he would go to the city of Nineveh and let the people know that they needed to change their ways and follow God.

And do you know what?  The people in the city listened to Jonah, and they asked God for forgiveness. They changed their ways and promised to live better lives and make better choices. God used Jonah to help save the lives of many people in the city of Nineveh.

 Even though Jonah didn’t understand why God wanted to help the people of Nineveh, he DID learn to listen to God. Jonah learned to follow God’s directions, even when he was afraid, and didn’t agree.  God was trying to help Jonah learn to have compassion for others and to learn that because God loves and forgives us of our sins, we should forgive others that have done wrong things. Even when we don’t understand God’s plans, it’s important that we listen to and obey God.

 


 

LOVE LETTER FROM GOD

Dear ___________________,

Poor Jonah!  Inside a big fish really is a horrible place to be.  I’m glad he prayed to me.  So I have a question for you do you think I can hear a prayer that you whisper?  Or what about one that you say in your head?  Do you think I can hear a prayer that you say at a noisy party or in a swimming pool?  The answer is yes, I can.  So keep praying to me.  Wherever you are, whatever you are doing, I am listening to your prayers – even if you end up in a big fish.

Love Always,

God  

 


                                                                                         

ACTIVITY 

EMOTION BOARD

Supplies: White construction paper or printer paper (any white paper), pen, pencil, markers or crayons.

Purpose: To enhance understanding and meaning of story.

How To – Have the children take the paper and cut into squares to make a book. Then have them draw faces describing some of their emotions (see example).  Write on each page what emotion they are feeling.  Staple the pages to make a book.  You can also just leave as a drawing.

 


 

WEEK’S CHALLENGE

 

1.) DO YOU HEAR THAT? DO YOU SEE THAT?  Take some time this week to pray to God and thank Him for all your blessings and then ask Him to help you hear and to see people who need some kindness and compassion.   Then show them some.  Perhaps you can do some yard work for them.  Perhaps you can make them a card.  Perhaps you can make some baked good goods for them.  Perhaps you can call them and simply let them know that you care.  Pray and listen.  God will guide you

 

2.) PRAYER CHALLENGE  Challenge yourself to pray more often this week and to spend more time talking with God.

 

3.) ADOPT A GRANDPARENT  Write a letter, or color a picture to one of our elderly church members twice a month.  That’s all you have to do to brighten someone’s day.  Have mom or dad email, call or text me for a name and address.

We can all do something to lighten the load of others during this time.  Be creative and share your ideas!

Pastor Schalm (734) 255-0935  / cschalm@stpaulucctaylor.org

 


 

CLOSING PRAYER

 

Dear God,

Thank you for loving us. When you ask us to do something, it’s hard sometimes. Please help us remember to follow your commands, even when we don’t understand all of your plans. Help us learn to listen to you, and help us to love and forgive others.

Amen