The story of the prophet Elijah and the widow in 1 Kings 17 illustrates how God is faithful to provide exactly what you need even when the situation seems hopeless by human standards. Elijah and the widow crafts reinforce this point and the idea that no matter how inadequate a child is to overcome a challenge, when they leave it in God's hands, He is more than enough. Take-home reminders keep this lesson ever present and fresh, useful because it can be difficult for a child to keep in mind when trials come.
Make a set of matching cards illustrating the different parts of the story and restating key points to remember such as, "God blesses those who trust in Him." Or, "God knows your needs before you do and provides." Include important words such as, "hospitality", "prayer" or "love." If you have a bilingual ministry, mix cards in both languages to match English with Spanish story phrases, for instance. Let the kids color a set of cards and cut them apart. Store them in an envelope or plastic baggie. Let the children play concentration with the cards to find the matches. Once they make all the matches, ask the children to lay out the pictures and captions in story order and to retell the story in their own words.
Jar of Oil
Elijah was wasting away from hunger at the brook of Kerith when God told him to go stay with the widow to receive his food. Problem was that the widow's cupboards were almost empty.. Both learned a lesson about trusting God to provide for their needs when Elijah prayed and God made the little bit of flour and oil that the widow had to offer last until the rains returned to the land. Students can decorate their own oil jars to help them remember that God will use whatever paltry offering they have and make it more than enough when they give it to Him. Use baby food jars, canning jars or clean, leftover food jars with lids. Paint the outside of the jar or cover it with cloth or colorful tissue paper decoupage. Pour in one cup of oil in, then seal the lid tightly.
Edible crafts are always popular. Elijah instructed the widow to make a little bread with whatever she had available, and she obeyed. Children can make their own miniature bread rolls using canned bread sticks. Or mix a simple dough with flour, oil and water--as the widow must have done. Give each child three pieces of dough and ask each to roll one into a long rope. Braid the three bread ropes into a miniature Jewish challah-style loaf. Bake according to the recipe instructions. Take turns thanking God for specific provisions He has made in each child's life as you eat your snacks.
The widow never had to worry about her bread basket being empty as long as she was faithful to do what God instructed her and take care of His prophet. Sometimes you do not understand the reasons that God asks you to do something, but all you need is obedience and a willing heart. A bread basket make-and-take reminds children that God rewards a faithful and obedient servant. You can get inexpensive bread baskets at a thrift store or dollar store. Decorate a large cloth napkin, using puffy fabric paints to inscribe story scenes, important verses and key points. When it the paint dries, lay it painted-side down in the basket. then fill the basket with rolls or bread. Pull the corners to the center to cover the bread for serving and to show off your designs.
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