40 Years Of Wandering

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  40 Years Of Wandering / Exodus 13:21-22; Deuteronomy 2:1-16; 8:2-3

One Main Truth: Trust God even when his answer does not come for a long time

“Are you ready for the Joy of Discovery? Unlock the One Main Truth: It’s an adventure in the Game, a revelation in the Bible, and it will transform your Life. Let’s take one step closer to becoming a Champion for Eternity!”

In the Game: “The Game Breaks Without Trust”
In the Bible: “Israel Stopped Trusting God because “
In Your Life: “You Must Trust God Even if it is for a Long, Long Time”

1 GAME EXPERIENCE: Trust Run

  1. Divide the players into two lines, facing each other. Make sure they stretch their arms out so they can touch the other lines’ hands.
  2. Choose one player at a time to run between the lines. The runner should start from the front of one line and go all the way to the end of the other line.
  3. Here’s the twist: The runner must be blindfolded. You can use three socks tied together as a blindfold or ask them to simply close their eyes.
  4. Safety first: Have a coach or supervisor stand at the end of the lines. Their job is to stop the runner when they finish the run, ensuring everyone’s safety.
  5. It’s important for the players in line to understand that are not to touch the runner, UNLESS the runner starts to veer off course, they should gently guide the runner back into line.
  6. Designate one player to be the runner for each round. They’ll start at one end and finish at the other, guided by their fellow players’ voices and support.

2 BIBLE DISCOVERIES: Gospel & Truth - Exodus 13:21-22; Deuteronomy 2:1-16; 8:2-3

THE CIRCUMSTANCE (Exodus 13:21-22; Deuteronomy 2:1-16; 8:2-3)
After God helped the Israelites to escape Egypt they disobeyed God and found themselves in a vast desert. As they wandered in the desert for 40 years, it gave them time. Time to learn to trust and obey God completely with their whole hearts. During this journey, the people would experience great hardships and the promise of living in their own land.  It was a journey of men, women, and children—united by their families, a shared history, and a future serving God. They were God’s chosen people, descendants of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. They had been slaves in the land of Egypt, but now, they were free! As they embarked (started) their journey, they found themselves led by a pillar of cloud by day and a pillar of fire by night. The cloud and the fire were more than mere elements of nature, they also displayed God’s presence. Surrounded by the harsh landscape, these pillars became symbols of hope and guidance, a reminder that they were not alone, God was with them. Day by day, they followed the cloud, and by night, they were bathed in the comforting glow of the fire.

THE CHOICE (Deuteronomy 8:2-3 ESV)
As they wandered in the desert their faith was tested. During this time the Israelites faced moments of doubt, grumbling (murmuring), and uncertainty. They questioned the path they were on, wondering if the desert was going to be their life from now on. When they were hungry God gave them Manna from heaven, when thirsty God provided water from a rock. Some of the people grumbled and complained about what God gave them. This showed their hearts were not true to God and they were ungrateful for His gifts to them. In those days many had to decide whether to follow or disobey God. Could they trust the cloud that guided them, even when it led them through the desert? Could they find contentment in the provision of manna, the heavenly bread that fed them daily? These questions are similar to questions we often face today, like questions of faith, and finding joy in difficult times. Deuteronomy 8:2-3 (ESV), states: “And you shall remember the whole way that the Lord your God has led you these forty years in the wilderness, that he might humble you, testing you to know what was in your heart, whether you would keep his commandments or not. And he humbled you and let you hunger and fed you with manna, which you did not know, nor did your fathers know, that he might make you know that man does not live by bread alone, but man lives by every word that comes from the mouth of the Lord.”

THE CONSEQUENCE (Exodus 13:21-22; Deuteronomy 2:1-16)
Their choices bore consequences, as choices often do. Some among them, burdened by doubt, and grumbling, questioned the wisdom of their journey. They longed for the familiarity of Egypt, despite its chains of slavery. Because they complained and turned away from God’s promise of hope that lay ahead, their consequence was wandering in the desert for 40 years. Through the trials of the desert, they learned to trust in faithfulness in caring and providing for them. In the end, their journey was more than a physical passage. It was a journey of the heart, a journey that transformed a rebellious people into one that served and obeyed the almighty God. Through all of their choices good and bad, one thing remained constant—the presence of God guiding, leading, and loving His people.

THE LIFE LESSON
It’s easy to let a complaining (grumbling) attitude take over when things are not going our way. As God’s children, we need to trust that he is in charge and will work things out. Sometimes delays are the fault of our own disobedience and sometimes they are meant to help us grow. In either case, grumbling displeases God and should be avoided. God heavenly father wants us to have hearts that thank Him for the good things He has done for us. When we grumble and complain it shows that we are ungrateful for His gifts. And so, as we journey through our own deserts, facing choices and consequences, may we find our hearts anchored in faith. May we trust in the unseen hand that guides us, and may we discover the beauty of God’s promises fulfilled in unexpected places.

3 LIFE CONNECTIONS: Connecting Jesus to Every Child

(1) The One Main Truth Planted in MY HEART, Growing MY ATTITUDE

POWER WORDS: “The Lord your God has blessed you in all the work of your hands. He has watched over your journey through this vast wilderness. These forty years the Lord your God has been with you, and you have not lacked anything.”  Deuteronomy 2:7 

(2) The One Main Truth Rooted in MY MIND, Leading MY CHOICES

POWER QUESTIONS:

Game Questions:

  •  What’s the name of the game we played that involved running between lines while blindfolded? (Trust and Run)
  •  How did the blindfolded runner rely on others in the “Trust Run” game?
  • Is that like trusting our parents when they tell us to do something?
  •  Can you imagine a problem where you might need to trust someone even if you can’t
    see everything clearly like you had to trust in the game?
    Boys & girls, that sounds a lot like what we just discovered in the Bible!”

Bible Questions:

  • Do you think the cloud by day and the fire by night guided the Israelites during their journey? (Yes, was that a lot like our game where we had to trust?)
  •  Why did the Israelites complain to Moses? (They were hungry and thirsty but the main reason was they didn’t trust God to provide for them.)
  •  What miracle did God do for His people the Israelites? (Manna came down from Heaven and water came from the rock.)
  •  Did they trust God after God provided for them?
  • We know God provided for the Israelites, can we trust God to help us today? (Yes)
  • What if it takes a long, long time like in our story?

Life Questions:

  • Have you ever grumbled or felt worried about something in your life? How can remembering our game about trusting and the Israelites’ journey help you?
  •  Can you think of a time when waiting for something felt like a long journey?
  •  How can the “One Main Truth” of trusting God for a long time help you today?
  •  Can you tell us some of the things that God has given you? What gifts (material things, talents, love from people, a friend, etc.)
  •  How do you think you would have felt if you had seen some of the miracles the Israelites had seen?

(3) The One Main Truth Today Committed in MY SOUL, Inspiring MY ACTIONS

POWER PRAYER: Repeat After Me “Dear God, please help me to trust you, Lord, even when your answer, your way takes a very long time, God what area in my life do I need to obey your commands and be patient? 
*Let’s be still and quiet, opening your heart to hear God’s whisper* 
(Coach, wait at least 14 seconds, allowing God to connect to every child)
Like the cloud in the day and fire by night, God reminds you are always with me.”

Ask the children what is their favorite worship song and then sing several worship songs with Strong & Powerful Worship Motions
(Click here for worship songs
“GameLife Strong & Powerful Worship Motions”)

Now, remember to share this truth,
practice this truth, and bring a friend back with you! Boys and girls, let’s go out as the
“Champions for Eternity” that God expects us to become!

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