Complete this sentence: if only I had (or didn’t have) ____ in my life, then I’d be happy. No matter what stage of life you’re in, you could probably think of something to put in the blank. If you’re single, you’d like to be married. If you have kids, you want them to be successful. If you’re struggling with an illness, you’d like to be healed. Whether you’re walking through a good time or a hard time in your life right now, God is still good and He is still in control. He has placed you when and where you are for a purpose and promises to be with you every step of the way.
MEMORY VERSE: “I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want.” Philippians 4:12 (NIV)
Saul was king of Israel but because of his sin, God chose David to be the next king instead of Saul’s son Jonathan. Although he would never be king, Jonathan fully trusted God’s plan. In 1 Samuel 23:15-18 he went out of his way to find his friend and God’s chosen one, David, and to remind him of God’s goodness. David was later able to write Psalm 57 even while on the run from Saul. Although his life was challenging and it seemed like everyone was out to get him, David remembered the greatness of his God and that He always keeps His promises.
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When you’re around the dinner table, review this month’s memory verse, Philippians 4:12-13, with your family. Talk about a time you were in need. Talk about a time you had more than enough. What is the secret to being content in both situations? What situation are you in right now? Pray and thank God that He is in control and ask Him to help you be content in every situation He gives you today.
While driving around with your family this week, ask them about their most recent fun memory. Then ask them about a recent hard memory or circumstance. What made one fun and the other hard? What is true about God in both of those times? Does God love them more when life is easy or when life is hard? Remind them of how much God always loves them (Ephesians 3:18-19) and that He will never leave them.
Read Psalm 57 together at bedtime. This psalm was written by David while he was being chased by Saul. Ask your kid(s) what helped David be content even in his hard circumstances. What did he believe was true about God? Talk with them about how our amazing God is bigger than anything we’ll ever face, He’s never caught off guard, and we can trust that He is always in control no matter what! Pray together, thanking God that He’s good and in control.
It’s time for a family game night! As a family pick a game to play, just be sure it’s a game where there are winners and losers. Before the game starts remind everyone to pay attention to how they are feeling when they are either losing or winning. After the game ends, read Philippians 4:12-13. Let each person share how they were feeling throughout the game while losing or winning. Remind your kids that whether winning or losing, whether living in plenty or in want, there is a secret to being content. What’s that secret?
Thank God for where He has you right now. Ask Him to help you be content and not look to something other than Him to bring you satisfaction. Thank Him for always being in control in any situation.
Next week we will begin a new trait for the month of April, PERSEVERANCE!