Thursday, July 28, 2011

More war (deeds of David day 16)

The Action Bible gives an exciting and dramatic retelling of 2 Samuel 2-3. It basically recounts some of the war between David and Saul's son Ish-Bosheth. The commanders of the two armies decide to have each of their 10 strongest warriors fight each other, to save casualties. (Remember this is family fighting family.) However, the small battle turns into a larger chase and David's army wins. Abner, who had been the commander of Ish-Bosheth's army, decided he was on the wrong side and changed to support David.

A simple game of chase was our activity today. Though we did not run with spears as they did in the story :)

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

David mourns Saul (deeds of David day 15)

Today we covered David mourning over Saul's and Jonathan's death from I Samuel 31 and 2 Samuel 1-2. David became King of his own tribe of Judah right away. However one of Saul's sons claimed the throne over the other tribes of Israel. Thus begins a civil war. I love how The Action Bible gives a grand picture of the difficult events.

We dyed one egg (out of the dozen) to represent the one tribe of Judah that David ruled over at first. Since it is July and we don't have dye kits, we just put some food coloring in a mug of water and let the egg soak. One tribe against eleven tribes made us wonder how that was an even match?

the point? In his time

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

David has mercy again (deeds of David day 14)

Today's story spanned I Samuel 26, 28, and 31. Basically it was a narrative of Saul chasing David and trying to kill him, and David escaping. Not only did David get away, he also had the chance to kill Saul again, but refused to kill the Lord's anointed. Once when Saul's army was asleep, David entered the camp. David took Saul's spear and water jug and left the camp. In the morning David pointed out to Saul the fact that he had spared Saul's life. This story, beginning on page 300 of The Action Bible, also covers Saul consulting the witch of Endor, and Saul's death.

We talked about God's instruction not to play with magic and then we played a game to act out Saul asleep in the camp. One person pretended to be asleep on the rug. Before the sleeper closed their eyes, we placed a few items around them. After "Saul" was "asleep," "David" quietly crept in and removed one or more objects from "Saul." When the sleeper woke, their job was to figure out what had been removed. It was harder than we thought it would be. You can easily modify the game according to the ages of your kids. You can simply move the objects or remove and hide them.

the point? God will complete his promises in his time.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Abigail (deeds of David day 13)

This was such a fun activity! We used a long piece of yarn and looped it around the brace of a bookshelf on one end, and around a tall chair in the other room on the other end. The result was a moving clothesline type loop. After we read the story in I Samuel 25, we acted out the story using a horse clipped on the "clotheline" as the messenger. We sent the "horse" back and forth between David and Nabal by simply moving the clothesline.

David and his men had protected many Israelites, including Nabal. One day David asked Nabal for food and supplies. "We Need Food"

Nabal refused! "NO" (actually it says ON :)

This made David furious and begin to plan revenge on Nabal and all his family. Some Servants tell Abigail what happened. "Warning Abigail"

Meanwhile, Nabal's wife Abigail heard of David's request and Nabal's response. She quickly gathered food and supplies and took them to David in his camp. She reminded David that he should not kill people in his future kingdom. David calmed down, accepted the supplies, and did not kill Nabal.

The next day God himself struck Nabal dead.

the point? God will punish the unrighteous, he doesn't ask us to.

Monday, July 11, 2011

Escape (deeds of David day 12)

Saul and his men were aggressively pursuing David in I Samuel 24. One night, Saul slept in a cave. Little did he know that David and his men were hiding in the back of the cave. David's men encourage David to kill Saul while he had the chance. However, David refused to lift his hand against the Lord's anointed King. He wanted to wait until God chose to end Saul's life. He wanted to wait on God's timing to fulfill his promise.

We played capture the flag for our activity. Although Saul was asleep while David cut a piece off Saul's robe, we used scarves and hid them on our own "side." The goal was to cross to the other persons side and find their scarf before they see you and tag you, or before they find your scarf.

the point? GOD makes his promises come true. He doesn't ask us to make his promises come true (i.e. David becoming King.)

Friday, July 8, 2011

The chase (deeds of David day 11)

I Samuel 21-23 tells of David's adventures as he hides from Saul. These include pretending to be crazy so enemies don't kill him, hiding in caves, and relatives and outcasts joining his "army." I love I Samuel 23:15 which says "Saul hunted him day after day, but the Lord didn't let him find him." That pretty well sums up this time period.

We played a game of moving hide and seek. It is traditional hide and seek except the hider is able to move hiding places in order to remain hidden. However, of course, the hider was always eventually found. Which is even better show of God's protection on David.

the point? "...the Lord didn't let him find him." God is in control, yipee!

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Unexpected allies (deeds of David day 10)

David escaped Saul's threats a few times already, but he was not sure if Saul's hatred was temporary or permanent. Saul's own son Johnathan was a good friend to David. Johnathan told David he would find out if Saul was really trying to kill David. They arranged a signal for Johnathan to warn David if he found out David was in grave danger. After Johnathan returned from the palace, he had learned that indeed, Saul desired to kill David. Johnathan shot his arrows into a field and instructed his servant to go collect the arrows far far away. David was hiding in the field and heard the message. This was the code that David should run for his life. Every time I read this story it blows my mind that David was going to be King instead of Johnathan (and Johnathan knew it,) yet Johnathan chose to support the Lord's will, wow.

We made bow and arrows out of small green branches and yarn. Simply find a straight branch off a bush that is bendable but not brittle. You may have to cut a groove on each end to keep the string from sliding towards the middle. Pull the branch into a "C" and tie the yarn to each end to hold the branch. We used other branches, reeds, and even a straw to be the arrows. They were certainly not great, but they did actually work and we had a good time playing and acting out the story.

the point? God ultimately decides who will be our friend, to fulfill his purpose.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Through the window (deeds of David day 9)

1 Samuel 19:1-17 begins a long line of David escaping Saul stories. Saul tried to spear David again, and David knew it was time to get out of the palace. David was married to Saul's daughter Michal. Michal helped David escape out the window and let him down with a rope. Then, when Saul's soldiers arrived to take David, she told them David was sick. When Saul discovered that David had escaped he was furious!

We attached a rope (actually a tow strap) to the top of our swingset/playhouse. The kids took turns pretending to be David, climbing down the rope to escape. They wanted to do it over and over. Another idea is to use a vertical hula hoop to be the window. Smaller children would enjoy climbing through it, and older children can try climbing through it at different heights for different challenges.

the point? God takes care of his, though it isn't always easy