Coats & Shackels: Week 4

Week #4

I Will Obey…

Go Answer:

I will obey God even when I can’t see His plan.

Go Verse:

“‘For I know the plans I have for you,’ says the Lord.
‘They are plans for good and not for disaster,
to give you a future and a hope.’”
Jeremiah 29:11

When we last saw Joseph, he was in command of Potiphar’s household but, someone is about to get him in BIG trouble. Potiphar’s wife lies about Joseph and tells Potiphar that he has done terrible things. This is not the truth, but Potiphar believes his wife. Potiphar becomes furious and throws Joseph into prison.

This guy just can’t catch a break! Joseph went from being the favorite son wearing a beautiful coat to being thrown into a pit and sold into slavery. From there he is blessed and put in charge of an official’s household, but now he’s been falsely accused (lied about) and thrown into prison. Joseph’s life is a lot like a game of “Chutes & Ladders,” isn’t it? One minute everything is looking good and you’re headed up (ladder), but then the next minute everything is messed up and you’re going backwards (chute).

Last week we talked about honoring God, this week we’re talking about obeying Him. Let’s take a look at our Go Answer…

“I will obey God even when I can’t see His plan.”

Consider having the audience say it with you or repeat after you. Optional: Create actions/hand motions to help kids memorize the Go Answer.

“‘For I know the plans I have for you,’ says the Lord.
‘They are plans for good and not for disaster,
to give you a future and a hope.’”
Jeremiah 29:11, NLT

The Go Verse is the scripture verse that corresponds to the theme of our series for the children to commit to memory over the course of the 5 weeks.

Make this fun for your family, whether it is a repeat-after-me segment or an unscramble game. Feel free to get creative!

Get someone to help you with the dialogue or turn this dialogue into a story.

Interrupter: The other day I went sledding.
Presenter: That sounds like a blast
Interrupter: Buuut I forgot my sled.
Presenter: Oh no, what did you do?
Interrupter: Thankfully, my friend had an extra sled.
Presenter: That’s great!
Interrupter: Well, unfortunately, I tripped and started sliding down the hill … backwards.
Presenter: Oh no! Were you okay?
Interrupter: Yeah, it was fine. A bump flipped me back around.
Presenter: Thank goodness.
Interrupter: But then I was sliding straight towards a tree.
Presenter: Oh no!
Interrupter: All good. I missed the tree.
Presenter: Whew! Glad you missed it.
Interrupter: But then I accidentally ran into a deer.
Presenter:  A deer? Was the deer okay?
Interrupter: No worries, it wasn’t real. It was a plastic Christmas decoration.
Presenter: That’s weird… but glad everything was okay.
Interrupter: Yeah, but then I started tumbling … fast … down the hill.
Presenter: Yikes!
Interrupter: It’s okay, my jacket was really puffy.
Presenter: Good thing!
Interrupter: A very good thing! I eventually rolled myself into a giant snowball!
Presenter: Niiice!

(Interrupter exits.)

That was a crazy trip down the hill! As we jump back into learning about the life of Joseph, we’re going to hear more about his many ups and downs. Today, things aren’t going so well… Things are continuing with Joseph on a ‘down.’ Let’s jump in…

Scripture Reference: Genesis 39:17-40:23.

Objective: The goal during week four of our series is to pick-up where we left off with Joseph being thrown into prison and carrying it through to his relationship with Pharaoh’s cupbearer and baker. The key element for children to understand this week is that Joseph obeyed God even when his life seemed to be crashing in around him.

Message: So Joseph is now in prison. Potiphar’s wife has lied about him and he’s been thrown into prison. The Bible tells us that even when he was in prison, God was looking out for Joseph. God wasn’t done with Joseph. There was still much, much more to the story of Joseph, and even though Joseph couldn’t see it yet, God was going to use him to do incredible things.

While in prison, Joseph continues to listen, trust, honor, and obey. In Genesis chapter 39, the Bible says, “the Lord was with Joseph in the prison and showed him His faithful love. And the Lord made Joseph a favorite with the prison warden [guard]” (39:21). The prison guard put Joseph in charge of all the other prisoners. Isn’t that great?! Wherever Joseph goes, he is put in charge and is blessed by God. “Whatever he did,” the Bible says, “the Lord made it prosper” (39:23).

While Joseph is in prison, the cupbearer and baker of the king of Egypt (Pharaoh) get in trouble and are thrown into prison. One night, they both had a dream, but were very discouraged because they didn’t know what it meant and needed someone to interpret it.  When Joseph came to find them in the morning, they told him about their dreams.

Do you remember one of the things that is so special about Joseph? He listens to God and is able to interpret dreams. When he was seventeen, Joseph had a dream and told his brothers about it. Now it’s time for Joseph to interpret another dream. Joseph knew that it was God who had given him this gift; he wasn’t able to do it on his own (40:8b).

Joseph interpreted the dreams of the cupbearer and the baker. The cupbearer’s dream and its interpretation were good. Joseph said his dream meant that he would be released from prison and get his job back in three days. But the baker’s dream and its interpretation were bad. Joseph said that his dream meant that he would die in three days. Joseph said: “Please remember me and do me a favor when things go well for you. Mention me to Pharaoh, so he might let me out of this place. For I was kidnapped from my homeland … and now I’m here in prison, but I did nothing to deserve it” (40:14-15).

Three days passed. Do you know what happened? Everything that Joseph interpreted came true! Both the cupbearer and the baker were let out of prison. The cupbearer got his job back in the king’s palace, but the baker died.

Conclusion and Cliff-Hanger for Next Week: Just like Joseph warned, his interpretation of the dreams came true. Even though Joseph asked them to remember him, the cupbearer forgets all about Joseph. Two years go by until one day Pharaoh has a dream that he needs interpreted. The only problem is that no one can interpret it, and that’s when the cupbearer remembers his friend, Joseph, is still in prison. This is where we hit ‘pause’ on our story so you won’t want to miss next week!

Hold the toy pearl necklace as you tell the following story.

“The Pearl Necklace”

(Unknown)

The cheerful girl with bouncy golden curls was almost five. Waiting with her mother at the checkout stand, she saw them: a circle of glistening white pearls in a pink foil box.

“Oh please, Mommy. Can I have them? Please, Mommy, please!”

Quickly the mother checked the back of the little foil box and then looked back into the pleading blue eyes of her little girl’s upturned face.

“A dollar ninety-five. That’s almost $2.00. If you really want them, I’ll think of some extra chores for you and in no time you can save enough money to buy them for yourself. Your birthday’s only a week away and you might get another crisp dollar bill from Grandma.”

As soon as Jenny got home, she emptied her piggy bank and counted out 17 pennies. After dinner, she did more than her share of chores and she went to the neighbor and asked Mrs. McJames if she could pick dandelions for ten cents.

On her birthday, Grandma did give her another new dollar bill and at last she had enough money to buy the necklace.

Jenny loved her pearls. They made her feel dressed up and grown up. She wore them everywhere–Sunday school, kindergarten, even to bed. The only time she took them off was when she went swimming or had a bubble bath. Mother said if they got wet, they might turn her neck green.

Jenny had a very loving daddy and every night when she was ready for bed, he would stop whatever he was doing and come upstairs to read her a story. One night when he finished the story, he asked Jenny, “Do you love me?”

“Oh yes, Daddy. You know that I love you.”

“Then give me your pearls.”

“Oh, Daddy, not my pearls. But you can have Princess–the white horse from my collection. The one with the pink tail. Remember, Daddy? The one you gave me. She’s my favorite.”

“That’s okay, Honey. Daddy loves you. Good night.” And he brushed her cheek with a kiss.

About a week later, after the story time, Jenny’s daddy asked again,

“Do you love me?”

“Daddy, you know I love you.”

“Then give me your pearls.”

“Oh Daddy, not my pearls. But you can have my baby doll. The brand new one I got for my birthday. She is so beautiful and you can have the yellow blanket that matches her sleeper.”

“That’s okay. Sleep well. God bless you, little one. Daddy loves you.”

And as always, he brushed her cheek with a gentle kiss.

A few nights later when her daddy came in, Jenny was sitting on her bed. As he came close, he noticed her chin was trembling and one silent tear rolled down her cheek.

“What is it, Jenny? What’s the matter?”

Jenny didn’t say anything but lifted her little hand up to her daddy. And when she opened it, there was her little pearl necklace. With a little quiver, she finally said, “Here, Daddy. It’s for you.”

With tears gathering in his own eyes, Jenny’s kind daddy reached out with one hand to take the dime-store necklace, and with the other hand he reached into his pocket and pulled out a blue velvet case with a strand of genuine pearls and gave them to Jenny.

He had them all the time. He was just waiting for her to give up the dime-store stuff so he could give her a genuine treasure.

The End.

Just like this little girl had to obey and trust so she could see the treasure her dad had for her, the same is true for us. When we trust and obey God with our lives, He has something far greater for us. We just have to let go and obey even when we can’t see what He has in store.

This is your opportunity to invite all the children to respond to what was just taught. Before service begins, make sure you’re prayed up and allow God to lead you during this time of response.

1.)        From today’s lesson, who told a lie about Joseph?
a.         Potiphar’s mother
b.         Potiphar’s wife
c.          The cup bearer
d.         Joseph’s oldest brother

2.)        Who threw Joseph into jail?
a.         Jacob
b.         Joseph’s brothers
c.          Potiphar’s baker
d.         Potiphar

3.)        From our story, what was Jenny’s necklace made of?
a.         Gold
b.         Silver
c.          Pearls
d.         Diamonds

4.)        True or False: We should obey God even when we can’t see His plan.
a.         True
b.         False

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