Online Session 10 - Joshua & Judges
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"Joshua Fit the Battle of... Reminding?" (Based Off Joshua 24:1-15.)
Note: Other readings for this month are listed below.
Readers: Narrator, Joshua, Leader 1, Leader 2
Narrator: Joshua gathered all the leaders of the tribes of Israel to the absolute middle of nowhere. This place called Shechem. Joshua was going to tell them a message from God, so everyone had to prepare themselves to listen...because you gotta prepare yourselves if you want to hear the words of the Lord, I guess. So he said...
Joshua: Thus, says the Lord . . .
Leader 1: Dude, here we go again.
Leader 2: He's always doing this!
Leader 1: What does "thus" even mean??
Joshua: STAHP! Ok as I was saying. Long ago, your ancestors Terah and his sons Abraham and Nahor lived far away beyond the Euphrates river.
Leader 1: I thought this was supposed to be a message about God?
Leader 2: Yeah, I'm not really into family history, Joshua.
Joshua: YOU TWO STOP IT! OK, so they lived far away, and they worshipped and served other gods!
Leader 1: [surprised] Really?
Leader 2: Of course they did—you’ve heard this all before, dufus! [elbows Leader 1]
Joshua: Seriously, I'm THISCLOSE to losing it!
Leader 1: [makes "oops face" Sorry....
Leader 2: Yeah. Sorry...Go head with the story.
Joshua: Anyways, God guided Abraham, and helped Abraham find and marry Sarai– er, Sarah. And they had a son named Isaac.
Leader 1: [Excitedly sharing what they know] Doesn’t Isaac mean “laughter?”
Leader 2: I think it does!
Joshua: IT DOES – but that's not what we're talking about! So then Isaac had two kids, Jacob and Esau.
Leader 1: Wonder why Jacob took off as a name we use and Esau didn't make it...
Leader 2: Good question...It could have been Edward vs Esau!
Joshua: [Visibly annoyed] And Esau got all the hill country of Seir . . .
Leader 1: Seir?
Leader 2: Yeah, where is that?
Joshua: It doesn't matter!
Leader 1: If it doesn't matter then why are you telling us this?
Joshua: Because I'm trying to set up a history, can you just???!!!
Leader 2: [nods] Yeah, sorry man.
Joshua: They ended up in Egypt.
Leader 1: Which is where our people were slaves!
Joshua: Yes. That was a dark time of our history. Egypt wasn’t the best of places to head to, but still, God was there!
Leader 1: God is everywhere!
Leader 2: It's hard to remember that when you're being oppressed though.
Leader 1: I know, right? But that's why we gotta work to help bring justice for all people, am I right?
Leader 2: [noticing Joshua giving them a look, elbows Leader 1] Dude!
Joshua: ANYWAYS!!! God brought all your ancestors out of Egypt, and God led them through the desert.
Leader 1: Manna. Wafer bread!
Leader 2: Don't forget those tasty little Quail.
Joshua: So then God led the people to this land, on the other side of the Jordan . . .
Leader 1: Land o’ Lakes – I mean milk!
Leader 2: And honey!
Joshua: [Trying so hard to keep focused] When you went over the Jordan and came to Jericho, the citizens of Jericho fought against you, and also the Amorites, the Perizzites, the Canaanites, the Hittites, the Girgashites, the Hivites, and the Jebusites;
Leader 1: [Interrupts] That’s a lot of “-ites.”
Leader 2: At least we didn’t have to fight the “kites.” They woulda been hard to bring down out of the wind—I s’pose we coulda cut their strings–
Joshua: [interrupts] Silence! I’m still reminding! and God handed them all over to you.
Leader 1: You know, God's been a pretty awesome deity...
Joshua: Yes! Since God has been so good to you, remember now that you are to follow the Lord 100%.
Leader 1: How do you follow someone at a percentage other than 100?
Leader 2: Maybe it means you shouldn't worship other gods??.
Joshua: Correct-a-mundo. 100%. If you don’t wanna do this, fine. But as for me and my house, we will serve the one, true God.
Leader 1: You fit the battle of Jericho, Josh!
Joshua: It's JOSHUA!
Leader 2: [Trying to smooth things over] Thanks for reminding us what happened, we will do our best not to forget. Lead on, O leader of ours!
Share what you know about your family history or your congregation’s history. Why is it important to remember our past? How can knowing where we came from influence the decisions that we make today?
Hannah's Plea (Based off 1 Samuel 1:9-11, 19-20; 2:1-10)
"God? Are you there?"
*NOTE: To answer the questions for this month's session, you'll need also to read the other reading. Here is a handy link so you can get to it quickly!
Readers: Kid, Narrator
Kid: I've always liked the name Hannah.
Narrator: I like it too. Did you know the name is from the Bible, about a certain Hannah?
Kid: Actually, I did know that.
Narrator: Clever, clever, as always. But do you know Hannah's story? It's a good one.
Kid: Only bits and pieces. She couldn't have babies, right?
Narrator: Yes. That's spot on. Back in that day, husbands often had several wives.
Kid: I bet that got complicated.
Narrator: Isn't that the truth! Well, there was a guy named Elkanah, and he had two wives—Hannah and one named Peninnah.
Kid: Hannah's a much better name.
Narrator: That's what I was thinking, too. Anyway, Peninnah was able to bear children. Hannah was what they called "barren" back then.
Kid: People didn't seem to have a very high view of women back then. It's like they were just supposed to be baby-making machines!
Narrator: Times change, for sure. Hannah still was very upset that she could not bear children, so she went to the temple to present herself to God. The priest at the time was one named Eli. Hannah made a solemn vow to God, that if God would give her a child, she would dedicate its life to God's service, most likely a prophet.
Kid: Was her prayer answered?
Narrator: It was! God answered her prayer with a son and she named him Samuel, who would be one of the last judges in Israel.
Kid: Okay, but what does this have to do with us? We see women differently today than they did back then.
Narrator: We do. Still, children are a gift, as you are a gift! I think this shows us that God can answer prayers. It also shows that Hannah chose to follow through with her promise—Samuel became one of the greatest prophets known who would usher in a new era for Israel: the era of kings.
Kid: A kingly gift, then?
Narrator: Ha! Yup. I suppose it was. One other thing I want to share with you was Hannah's prayer. It's best if you read it directly, because it's beautiful. It shows us the big reversal that God is all about: providing good news to those who thirst for it. Let's read it together.
Kid: Sure. Where? When?
Narrator: Here. Now!
Kid Story: Share your beliefs about how God answers prayer. How did Hannah follow through with the commitment she made in the temple before God?
*Scripture citations taken from The Holy Bible: New Revised Standard Version. 1989. Nashville: Thomas Nelson Publishers. As found in the Logos Bible study software program.
Check-In Questions and Mentor Meeting Options
THIS MONTH'S MENTOR MEETING OPTIONS
Choose one of these activities for your next mentor meeting.
Activity #1: Statement of Faith
Prepare your own statement of faith with your mentor. This can be in the form of a “legal document,” but feel free to pull out the stops and craft an art project, a poem, or a story that shows how you want to serve God like Joshua called the people to commit themselves to God.
Activity #2: Plotting the Grand Journey
To remind God’s people of what God had done for them, Joshua recalled the Israelite’s history. Take a moment to put together your own life histories—where you have come from and where you hope to go someday. Plot it out on a tablet, computer, or as a file on your smartphone. Share photos or memories on social media.
Activity #3: Create Your Own
Discuss with your mentor or teacher what kinds of things you will both enjoy doing. Decide on an activity for this month that you and your mentor will do.
Instagram/Phone Check-in: Hannah & Samuel (See above for Check-In Storytimes!)
- What was Hannah so upset about? What did she intend to do?
- Cultures were different in Hannah’s time. In most modern societies today we don’t judge a woman’s worth solely by her capacity to bear children. Still, Hannah wanted God to hear her. How do you have come to God with something you want or need?
- Name which part of Hannah’s prayer you liked best. Was there anything you didn’t like?
Instagram/Phone Check-in: God Calls Samuel (Go here for this reading!)
- Who did Samuel think was calling him? Who was really calling him and what was Samuel instructed to do?
- What news did Samuel get and who did he get it from?
- How would you recognize God’s voice if God were to call on you? Do you think that God talks to people today as God spoke to Samuel? Are there other ways that God calls on people?