Sunday, August 1, 2010

Sharing Time. August 2010: Week One.

Monthly Theme: Jesus Christ is the Son of God, and He is a God of miracles.
Scripture: "For behold, I am God; and I am a God of miracles; . . . and I work not among the children of men save it be according to their faith." 2 Nephi 27:23
Weekly Theme: Jesus Christ is a God of miracles.

I'm sorry I'm posting this after the fact, but I couldn't get it up on here in time. Hopefully, this will still be of use to someone at some point! Leave a comment; I'd love to know if this worked for you.

Following pretty closely along with the 2010 Outline for Sharing Time, here is my plan.

1. Print the letters of the word miracles on separate pieces of paper (which you can't see through if you turn them over)

2. Print the following words: miracles, show, that, Jesus Christ, has, power, over, the earth, cut into individual wordstrips.

3. Obtain several pictures illustrating miraculous events performed by Jesus Christ. I'm selecting pictures from the Gospel Art Kit (GAK), many of which can also be found in the newer Gospel Art Book (GAB) or printed from here.

4. Optional: Obtain small tickers of Jesus Christ.

To start, we'll play a quick game of hangman, by putting the letters of the word miracle on the board face down, with magnets, until the word is revealed.

Then, I will divide the group into three groups, and give each group a set of the following wordstrips: miracles, show, that, Jesus Christ, has, power, over, the earth. I made an extra set of wordstrips and put them up face down on the board with magnets. When all the groups unscramble the words and create the sentence, I'll turn over each word on the board so the sentence is on the board for us to look at during the whole lesson.

"Christ Walking on the Water" by Robert T. Barrett (picture found here)

To encourage understanding of miracles, both past and present, we had a discussion including pictures from the GAK, of miracles performed by Jesus Christ while he was on the earth.

Questions and discussion points:
1. What is a miracle?
- an extraordinary event caused by the power of God (from the Outline)
- the power of God on earth today is the Priesthood

2. Why did Jesus perform miracles? Why do miracles occur today?
- "Miracles should not be regarded as deviations from the ordinary course of nature so much as manifestations of divine or spiritual power." (Bible Dictionary)
- "They were intended to be a proof to the Jews that Jesus was the Christ." (Bible Dictionary)
- "Miracles were and are a response to faith, and its best encouragement. They were never wrought without prayer, felt need, and faith." (Bible Dictionary)
- "If miracles cease, it is because faith has ceased." (Bible Dictionary)

Pictures/Stories of Miracles:
Then we discussed briefly the miracles listed below, first identifying the story and then discussing why each one of these events was a miracle, as opposed to just an everyday occurrence.

1. Miracle: Birth of Jesus Christ
Explanation: Babies are born every day, but Jesus Christ's birth was a miracle because he is the child of Mary and Heavenly Father. He is the literal Son of God.
Picture: "The Nativity" (GAK 201)

2. Miracle: Joseph, Mary, and Jesus' Flight Into Egypt
Explanation: When Jesus was young, an angel appeared to Joseph in a dream and told him to take Jesus and Mary to Egypt. Joseph was warned to stay in Egypt until the angel declared it was safe to return, because King Herod would seek to kill Jesus. Joseph did as the angel instructed, and Jesus was protected from harm.
Picture: "Flight Into Egypt" (GAK 204)

3. Miracle: Jesus Healing the Blind Man
Explanation:Jesus saw a man who had been born blind. Jesus spat in the dirt and made clay, then put the clay on the blind man's eyes and sent him to wash in the pool of Siloam. After doing as Jesus said, the man came away from the pool able to see.
Picture: "Christ Healing a Blind Man" (GAK 213)

4. Miracle: Jesus Calmed the Stormy Sea
Explanation: Jesus fell asleep as He and His disciples were sailing across the Sea of Galilee. A great storm arose. The wind blew and waves covered the ship. The disciples, afraid for their lives, woke Jesus. He stood and told the winds and the sea to be still. The storm stopped, and the sea was calm. The disciples were amazed that even the wind and the sea obeyed Jesus.
Picture: "Stilling the Storm" (GAK 214)

5. Miracle: Jesus Blessing Jairus's Daughter
Explanation: A ruler named Jairus asked Jesus to come to his house and heal his dying daughter. On the way they learned it was too late: the little girl had died. However, Jesus told Jairus not to fear but to believe in Him. When Jesus entered the house He told the mourners not to cry. He told them the girl was not dead but asleep. They laughed because they knew she was dead. Jesus took the girl by the hand and told her to arise. She returned to life and rose from her bed.
Picture: "Jesus Blessing Jairus's Daughter" (GAK 215)

6. Miracle: Jesus Walking on Water
Explanation: One night Jesus' disciples put out to sea in a boat while Jesus stayed behind to pray to Heavenly Father. A storm came up and tossed the boat in the waves. When Jesus saw His disciples struggling with their ship in the storm, He started walking on the water toward the ship. The disciples were frightened when they saw a man walking toward them on the water. Then they heard Jesus call to them and tell them not to fear. Peter asked Jesus if he could come to Him, and Jesus told Peter to come. But as Peter did so he became afraid and started to sink. Jesus took hold of Peter's hand and helped him back to the boat. The sea became calm again, and the disciples testified that Jesus was the Son of God.
Picture: Christ Walking on the Water (GAK 243)

Then, I bore my testimony of miracles. I believe that these miracles really did happen and that they occurred through the power of God. I challenged the kids to pray this week to know for themselves that these things we discussed are true, reminding them that they should not just take my word for it.

Adjustment for Junior Primary:
I left the sentence and the word miracles on the board and did not have the kids play hangman to guess the word nor unscramble the sentence. We devoted the time to the pictures and discussion. Each child came up and held a picture before putting it on the board. They each received a sticker of Jesus Christ, as they returned to their seat on the floor in front of the board.

With each story, we repeated our sentence from the board, "Miracles show that Jesus Christ has power over the earth."