Don’t you sometimes wish you could know what was going to happen in the future? It may be as simple as wanting to know if the traffic will be bad for your trip or when that pop quiz is coming or if your boss is going to like the new ideas you have. Well, even though God does know these things, He usually doesn’t tell us. But He does want to talk to us and share with us what He knows is really important. All throughout the Old Testament, God used men and women called prophets to share His Word with His people. These prophets would teach them what God wanted them to know, point out their sin so they’d confess and turn back to God, and also warn them what would happen if they didn’t repent. Sometimes prophets would even tell the people what God promised to do hundreds of years in the future. Guess what? All of God’s promises have always come true.
MEMORY VERSE: “Faith is the confidence that what we hope for will actually happen; it gives us assurance about things we cannot see.” Hebrews 11:1 (NLT)
One of the prophets God used to talk to His people was a man named Isaiah. God gave Isaiah lots of messages to give to His people, but some of the most amazing were promises about a Messiah that was to come. God not only told Isaiah what the Messiah would be like but also what He would do to save the world. Isaiah never got to see all of these promises come true in his lifetime, but 600 years later a baby was born in a small town called Bethlehem who had come to fulfill God’s promises. We now live in a time kind of like Isaiah did. Isaiah was looking forward to the Messiah coming and he knew that God always keeps His promises. We are also looking for the Messiah, Jesus, to come back AGAIN to rule as king. We can have faith that He will come back because God always keeps His promises!
This year Watermark has put together a family advent guide. Inside this guide there is a daily passage of scripture to read, a devotional, and some discussion questions to talk about with your family. The goal of this is to prepare you and your family's hearts for the Christmas season and to focus your minds on the true meaning of Christmas. Take time at dinner each day to walk through the devotional for the day.
As you are driving to and from activities, use that time in the car to begin memorizing this month’s verse. Hebrews 11:1 "Faith is the confidence that what we hope for will actually happen; it gives us assurance about things we cannot see." As you become more familiar with it, you can begin challenging each other to see who can say it the quickest, or how many times you can say the verse at a stoplight before it changes from red to green!
As you are putting your family to bed ask them what they think faith is. Ask them why they think the things they do about faith, then read them this month’s memory verse:
Hebrews 11:1 "Faith is the confidence that what we hope for will actually happen; it gives us assurance about things we cannot see."
This verse tells us that faith is a complete trust and confidence in something. We can have faith, or complete trust and confidence, in God because He always keeps His promises.
At the beginning of the day make a promise to your family. A couple of ideas are to get their favorite candy or snack for when they get home or playing their favorite game with them after school. Be creative and have fun with it! KEEP your promise and follow through with what you said you would do! Then as you are enjoying the treat or activity remind your family that you are simply giving an example of how God ALWAYS keeps His promises.
Pray through Isaiah 11:1-9 and thank God for keeping His promise to send a Messiah. Ask Him to help you prepare your heart as you look forward to celebrating Christmas this year.
Next week we will learn why we can trust God even when we don't understand!