So happy to have finally finished our plants lapbook!!!
All glory to God!
Week 3: Obedience: Hear and Obey
“For it is not those who hear the law who are righteous in God’s sight, but it is those who obey the law who will be declared righteous.” – Romans 2:13
Bible Story: The Parable of the Two Sons (Matthew 21: 28-32)
28“What do you think? There was a man who had two sons. He went to the first and said, ‘Son, go and work today in the vineyard.’
29“ ‘I will not,’ he answered, but later he changed his mind and went.
30“Then the father went to the other son and said the same thing. He answered, ‘I will, sir,’ but he did not go.
31“Which of the two did what his father wanted?”
“The first,” they answered.
Jesus said to them, “Truly I tell you, the tax collectors and the prostitutes are entering the kingdom of God ahead of you. 32For John came to you to show you the way of righteousness, and you did not believe him, but the tax collectors and the prostitutes did. And even after you saw this, you did not repent and believe him.”
Jesus told this parable to the people, particularly to the chief priests and elders of the temple who questioned his teachings. This story tells us how some people may at first, appear to reject Christ and continue to live sinfully, but then after some time, will have a change of heart and decide to follow Jesus and obey His commands. Then there are those people who proudly claim to be believers of Jesus, but then as time passes by, it becomes obvious that they do not really follow the teachings of Christ. Thus, Jesus is saying it is from those who appear to be great sinners that there will be ones who will truly accept Jesus in their hearts, while those who appear to be “righteous” and “holy” are in fact, too proud to truly surrender their lives to Jesus and merely say they believe, but the way they live their lives show otherwise.
Our verse, Romans 2:13 says, “For it is not those who hear the law who are righteous in God’s sight, but it is those who obey the law who will be declared righteous.” What does “RIGHTEOUS” mean?
To be “righteous” simply means to “be right with God.” Remember that because of our sins, we all deserve to be punished, but because of God’s great love, He sent His only Son Jesus who bore our sins and took the punishment for them on the cross. Therefore, anyone who believes in Jesus and what He has done is cleansed from all unrighteousness and becomes “right with God.” This gift of “righteousness” is for all those who BELIEVE in Jesus and what He has done for us.
However, God is not merely interested in people who only SAY they believe in Him. God wants us to truly believe in our hearts and show our faith by our OBEDIENCE to His Word. Jesus was very serious about this, and even gave this warning, “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven.” (Matthew 7:21).
A true believer of Christ does the will of the Father, and this means obeying His commandments. James 1:22 tells us, “Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says.” And for those who choose to not only HEAR, but more importantly, OBEY, Jesus gave this promise, “Whoever has my commands and keeps them is the one who loves me. The one who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I too will love them and show myself to them.” – John 14:21.
Dear Lord, thank You for reminding us today that it is not enough to simply say we believe in You, but more importantly, we should show our faith by our actions. Forgive us, Lord, for the times that we have chosen not to follow Your commands or sometimes, we also forgot to do so. Help us Lord to hear and obey, and may our obedience be from hearts that are truly surrendered to You. Help us, dear Lord, to live our lives in a way that is pleasing to Your sight. In Jesus’ name we pray, Amen.
Week 2: Obedience leads to blessing
Grades 4 and up: “Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right.”Honor your father and mother”–which is the first commandment with a promise–“that it may go well with you and that you may enjoy long life on the earth.” – Ephesians 6:1-3
Review of last week’s lesson
Last week we spoke about the way of OBEDIENCE and the importance of listening and obeying God’s voice. When we disobey God, we commit SIN, and this is the way of REBELLION.
(1) The Way of Jesus: The Way of Obedience. It is when a person says in his/her heart, “I want to do what God wants me to do.” It is when we make a decision to know God’s will by reading His Word and then doing our best to follow it. We may not always get it right but with the help of the Holy Spirit, we are able to understand what God wants and have the courage and strength to do it.
(2) The Way of Satan: The Way of Rebellion. It is when a person says in his/her heart, “I don’t care what God says, I will do what I want to do.” It is when we choose to listen to other voices (like from television, movies, wrong kinds of friends, or even one’s own selfish desires) instead of following what the Bible tells us to do.
BIBLE STORY: The Story of Ruth and Naomi (Read Ruth 3:1-5)
Naomi and Ruth were both widows. Naomi is Ruth’s mother-in-law. During their time, widows were considered really poor, because they had no more husbands to protect them and take care of them. When their husbands died while they were still in Moab, Naomi asked her two daughters-in-law to return to their families while she went back to Bethlehem alone. One of them said goodbye, but Ruth told Naomi, “Don’t urge me to leave you or to turn back from you. Where you go I will go, and where you stay, I will stay. Your people will be my people, and your God my God.” So Ruth went with Naomi and took care of her elderly mother-in-law.
Ruth had been gathering leftover grain in the fields of one of Naomi’s relatives, Boaz. Now, Naomi thought it was good for Ruth to get married to Boaz, so that Ruth would have a good life and a better future. So she gave instructions for Ruth to prepare herself and at the right time, let Boaz know she was available for marriage by lying down near Boaz’s feet as he slept. This might sound a bit weird to us, but this was the proper way they did it during their time. Ruth obeyed her mother-in-law’s wise advice and did as she was told. True enough, Boaz acknowledged her and soon they were married.
Ruth was blessed because first of all, she chose to follow the one true God that Naomi believed in instead of going back to her old life and false gods in Moab. She honored her mother-in-law by going with her to take care of her instead of letting her fend for herself as an old widow. She also chose to obey Naomi’s advice which led to God’s blessing. She was “redeemed” from her poor life as a widow and became the wife of a good man named Boaz. Ruth was truly blessed because she bacame the mother of Obed, who was the father of Jesse, the father of David. And we know David became Israel’s greatest king, from whose family came Jesus, the Messiah.
Obedience leads to blessing
God is our “supreme authority” – as our Creator, He has the right to rule us and be obeyed. One way God guides and leads us is through the different people he has placed as authorities over us. They are what we call as God’s delegated authorities. When we respect and obey them, we are obeying God. But when we choose to rebel against them, then we are rebelling against God.
God has placed our parents and guardians (ex. titos and titas or lolos and lolas who take care of us) as the authorities in the home. Ephesians 6:1 tells us, “Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right.” This is just a reminder to follow the fifth commandment (NOTE: review 10 commandments) to “honor your father and mother.” Our parents were given the responsibility of raising us, and part of what they do is ask God’s help in taking care of their children. God then gives them wisdom to teach what is right and wrong so that their children will grow up as good men and women of God. Our responsibility as children is to honor and respect our parents and obey them for this pleases the Lord.
Obedience to the commandment to honor our parents and obey them leads to a life of BLESSING which is “that it may go well with you and that you may enjoy long life on the earth.”(Ephesians 6:3). If we think about it, a child that is trained up by his parents in the way of the Lord is truly blessed. For example:
a. As a young child: An obedient child is a joy to have around, unlike a spoiled brat who can be very annoying and sometimes even causes harm to other kids.
b. While in school: An obedient student gets along with classmates and enjoys learning in school, unlike bullies who get into trouble. Obedience to parents leads to respect and obedience to school authorities such as the principal, teachers and staff.
c. As adults: A person who grew up obedient to parents will also respect authorities in the workplace. Because of this, they are able to perform well and do good in their jobs, winning the favor of their superiors and peers. They also follow the rules and therefore avoid danger (ex. fights with other people, car crash due to disobedience to traffic rules and the like).
Obeying God’s Delegated Authorities
Indeed, obedience to our parents and guardians is just a start. God expects us to obey His other delegated authorities such as those in school (ex. teachers) and in the community (ex. government officials, police officers, etc.) Hebrews 13:17a tells us,“Obey your leaders and submit to their authority. They keep watch over you as men who must give an account.”
Our Father in heaven, thank you for reminding us today about honoring our parents by obeying them. Help us to be obedient to the authorities you have placed before us, that we may live a life of blessing and so that our lives will also bless others. In Jesus’ name we pray, Amen.
Week 1: The Way of Obedience
Preschool – Grades 1-3: “Observe the commands of the Lord your God, walking in obedience to him and revering him.” – Deuteronomy 8:6
Grades 4 and up: “Observe the commands of the Lord your God, walking in obedience to him and revering him. For the Lord your God is bringing you into a good land—a land with brooks, streams, and deep springs gushing out into the valleys and hills; a land with wheat and barley, vines and fig trees, pomegranates, olive oil and honey; a land where bread will not be scarce and you will lack nothing; a land where the rocks are iron and you can dig copper out of the hills.”- Deuteronomy 8:6-9
Story: Adam and Eve disobey God
Adam and Eve were the very first persons in the earth. God made them so he could be friends with them. God created the world (review days of creation) so that they would have a home were God could fellowship with them. They were surrounded with all good things – the plants and trees, animal friends, the sun, moon and stars to give them light – and more importantly, God gave Adam and Eve His blessing to rule the earth. God also gave Adam His command, “You are free to eat from any tree in the garden; but you must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, for when you eat of it you will surely die.” God gave this command because He loved Adam and Eve and did not want them to be separated from Him and come to any harm.
But the serpent tricked them and tempted them to eat the fruit which God had forbidden them to eat. Adam and Eve listened to the voice of the serpent and disobeyed God. They chose to listen to the serpent’s voice and not to God’s voice.
When Adam and Eve disobeyed God, they committed SIN. Sin separates us from God because God is holy and pure and sin cannot be near him. Sin has consequences – and it deserves punishment. Even though it made God sad, He had to do what is right and let Adam and Eve suffer the consequences of their sin so that they would learn why it was important to obey God’s voice. Adam and Eve were banished from the Garden of Eden and suffered many hardships because they became separated from God.
But God still loves Adam and Eve, and He has a plan to save them and all mankind from sin. The rest of the Bible tells us how God unfolds His amazing plan of salvation to bring back people to the perfect life He had designed for us which is to be with Him and live in harmony with each other and with all of God’s creation.
Our memory verse reminds us regarding the importance of listening to and following God’s voice. In today’s world, we are surrounded with many voices – the serpent, or more clearly, Satan, continues to try to tempt and deceive us through the voice of television, the voices of wrong kinds of friends, and even the voice inside us from our own selfish desires. All these other voices lead us to harm, pain and suffering, and any happiness or enjoyment that following these voices may gain us is only temporary. Sin always has consequences, and sin deserves punishment. That is why we need to learn how to always listen to God’s voice – and God talks to us through His Word – the BIBLE. The Bible tells us how to live according to God’s perfect will and purpose. Some have said it is like our “operating manual” which was written by the Creator Himself.
B – Basic
I – Instructions
B – Before
L – Leaving
E – Earth
1 John 5: 3-5 tells us, “In fact, this is love for God: to keep his commands. And his commands are not burdensome, for everyone born of God overcomes the world. This is the victory that has overcome the world, even our faith. Who is it that overcomes the world? Only the one who believes that Jesus is the Son of God.”
As we hear and obey God’s Word, we learn how to be free from the penalty of sin (we receive the gift salvation by grace through faith in Jesus Christ), we are given the power over sin (we receive the gift of the Holy Spirit who helps us overcome temptations and trials) and eventually, we will be free from the presence of sin (we receive the gift of eternal life).
Indeed, when we follow JESUS and observe His commands, we experience His blessing and favor and all the wonders of His amazing love.
Father God, we thank You for Your Word, the lamp for our feet and the light to our path, to guide us to follow Your ways and lead us to Your purposes. Please help us with the Holy Spirit to read and understand your Word – the Bible, and give us the grace to obey Your commands. Help us to always listen to Your voice and not other voices, for we know, Lord, that Your voice is the one that will lead us to your plans which are always good. Thank You, Dear Lord, for your amazing love. In Jesus’ name we pray, Amen.
We made a DIY traffic light which we used to introduce the importance of obeying rules. This can be a good ice-breaker or even used for a game of “Stop-and-Go!” after the lesson.
I just dismantled the tissue box, glued aluminum foil all over it, then cut out the circles in front and a rectangle at the back. Then the cellophane was taped on the inside before the box was pieced together again using tape. We also covered the whole aluminum box with foil and taped it into position. The rectangle hole at the back was for putting a flashlight inside so that we could play “Stop-and Go!”
A couple of weeks ago, we started on an ambitious art project — making a paper mache globe. I had envisioned it to show some elevation on the continents and our labels would be relatively simple — just the continents and oceans. I thought it would be a perfect project that would match our science lesson on Creation (days of creation / living and non-living things).
We used glue + water mix for the first layer and started with a balloon as a mold.
We switched to a flour + water mix for the next couple of layers. The kids would tear the paper and help out with laying down the pieces onto the mold, but honestly, most of the work was done by mom. I read that you had to make sure each layer is completely dry before adding another layer to prevent the growth of molds. So we figured since we needed around 6-7 layers for it to be really sturdy, it would take more than a week before we could start painting our globe.
Then one fine sunny day, mom had a brilliant idea: Why not let the paper mache dry outdoors under the sun? That would speed things up. Or so I thought….
BOOM! This is what we came home to that night. The balloon inside exploded because of the extreme afternoon heat.
I had a couple of more brilliant ideas to try and rescue our project, but generally lost interest for a while…
Then today, I cut up some shapes for my daughter for her to put together and make some sort of artwork during her free time.
And this is what she decided to make: The days of creation.
It then dawned on me how sometimes, as parents, we tend to be overly ambitious with our kids’ projects and presentations, trying to make them as unique, eye-catching and as amazing as those projects we see on pinterest and all those mommy-blogs out there. Or maybe it’s just me.
The Lord reminded me today of our memory verse last week, that each individual is “fearfully and wonderfully made.” I had been trying to make her do something really complicated, and in truth that means I am going to have to do most of the work to make it. And upon reflection, my desire to make an amazing project was so that I could have something to show off — rather than to really make it part of the learning process. I had wanted for her project to be at par with those that I also see on the internet. I had wanted her to be like the other wonderfully-talented homeschooled kids — and I had wanted me to be like the other cool and creative homeschooling moms. I had forgotten to let our own uniqueness shine and bring out the best from what God has so graciously showered us with.
Today, all I had to do was to cut up some colored paper and she did all the work — from conceptualizing (I suggested she do a self-portrait but she said she wanted to do days of creation), to designing her work and putting them all together.
And she did it all with a smile. No need for pushing or coaxing or bribing. She finished it all on her own and even cleaned up afterward. 🙂
Keeping it simple. Making learning fun. Celebrating how God made us special.
Thank You, LORD!
” I will praise thee; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made: marvellous are thy works; and that my soul knoweth right well.” – Psalm 139:14
Lazy hands make for poverty, but diligent hands bring wealth. (Proverbs 10:4 NIV)
We read a book entitled, “Unang Unngoy” (“The First Monkey”). It’s a local legend about how a fairy tried to teach a little girl how to be useful; mainly to make a dress from the most basic material — cotton blossoms. Once the lazy girl realized how tedious the process is, she threw away the cotton blossoms saying she’d rather not wear dresses than spend so much energy and effort to make one. This made the fairy very angry and she punished the girl by turning her into the first monkey.
While the concept of fairies and magic and certainly punishment by turning a kid into a monkey is obviously not a good thing — there is always a moral lesson that can be picked up from such children’s books.
So after we read the book, I carefully explained how God hates witchcraft and that God show us that instead of immediate punishment, Jesus modeled patient training, gentle correction, forgiveness and grace.
Then I thought we could follow the said process and make our own “How to” book from it.
So here it is:
Memory Verse: “See what great love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God!” – 1 John 3:1a
Bible Story: Parable of the Lost Son (NOTE: This is the same bible story lesson as the Fruits of the Spirit Lesson 7 Part 1 on Faithfulness but with a different memory verse. Also, the emphasis here would be our newness in Christ when we come to the Father for forgiveness and the restoration of our position as sons and daughters of the most Holy one.)
Scripture: Luke 15:11-32 11 (Read from the Bible)
Our story is a parable told by Jesus. A parable is an earthly story with a heavenly meaning.
“Prodigal” means “extravagant” or “wasteful.” This story is about a young man who asked for his inheritance and then spent it all on useless and worldly things.
(The son had done a terrible thing. For starters, asking for one’s inheritance while the parent was still alive is kind of like telling the parent that the son wanted him to be dead already. This is because an inheritance is usually only given when the parent dies. This request from the younger son must have really hurt the feelings of his father, and yet, the father gave what the son asked for.)
The son left his father and went to a faraway place where he spent all his money on parties and food and worthless things. He suddenly finds himself without any money at all and he had to get a job feeding pigs just so he could survive. He was so hungry he thought of eating the pigs’ food.
(It was a very shameful thing for a Jewish person to get this kind of job because they considered pigs to be “unclean.” This could be considered as one of the lowest kinds of job a Jew could ever have.)
The son realized how his father’s servants were much more well off than him, because they had food to spare while he was here with pigs and he was dying of hunger. And so he made up his mind to return home and tell his father to make him one of the servants just so he could eat well.
(This part of the story shows us that the son probably went back to the father not because he was primarily “sorry” for all he had done, but more likely, because he was just so “hungry.” Even so, the father welcomed him back with open arms.)
While he was still a long way off, the father saw him and ran to him, threw his arms around him and kissed him. The son said to him, ‘Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you. I am no longer worthy to be called your son.’
(Here we see that the father already had shown that he has forgiven his son even before the son said “sorry.” The kiss and the welcoming embrace came first before the son’s confession of his sins. This shows us how our Father in heaven has also loved us while we were still sinners.)
The father said to his servants to bring the best robe and put it on his son. He also put a ring on the son’s finger and sandals on his feet. Then he asked that the fattened calf be cooked and a feast be made to celebrate the return of his lost son.
(The ROBE signified the “robe of righteousness,” which means that the past mistakes have been forgiven and all is now made “right” in the father’s eyes. The RING signifies authority, which shows that the son has been given back the power of being an heir of his father. The SANDALS show “sonship” because servants walk barefoot and only the master and his sons wore sandals.)
This parable teaches us that when we do what we want instead of what God wants, we are like the lost son. Sin leads to separation from the Father and this may seem fun or just fine for some time, but sooner or later, we will find that sin also leads to much suffering.
But as our memory verse states, God is FAITHFUL– it means He is true to His promises. If we confess ours sins to Him and ask forgiveness from our hearts, then it whether the sin was big or small, God will forgive us and cleanse us from all our unrighteousness or wrongdoing. Just as the prodigal son was accepted with open arms and his “sonship” was restored completely, so will the Father accept us when we repent and turn to Him. We are made “right” with God through Jesus, and by His amazing grace, we become sons and daughters of the most High God. We are then “heirs” of all of God’s blessings for His beloved children. Praise be to our Almighty God!
Our Father in heaven, thank You for Your amazing grace! Thank You for Your great love and Your faithfulness. May Your holiness be proclaimed throughout all the earth! We have sinned against You and we now humbly ask for Your forgiveness. We confess that we have chosen to fulfill our own desires and listen to other voices instead of focusing our eyes, ears and more importantly, our hearts to You. And we thank You, our most gracious God, for we know that we can trust You that as we confess our sins, You are faithful and just to forgive us and cleanse us from all unrighteousness. Thank You Lord for letting us become your children and heirs to Your Kingdom! All praise and honor be to You our heavenly Father! In the mighty name of Jesus, we pray, AMEN!
I found this craft idea from: http://www.meaningfulmama.com/2013/12/teaching-kids-forgiveness-parable-lost-son-craft.html
I used a different verse so for those who want to download the pattern, you may do so here: Prodigal Son craft
We traced the kids’ hands on cardboard paper, cut them out and glued them into colored paper cut in 2.5″ x 8″ strips.
We decorated our craft with googly eyes, crayons and some brown felt for the hair.