GOD VIEW: THE CONNECTION BETWEEN COURAGE AND GOD’S CHARACTER, AS SHOWN THROUGH GOD’S BIG STORY. COURAGE IS BEING BRAVE ENOUGH TO DO WHAT YOU SHOULD DO, EVEN WHEN YOU’RE AFRAID.
Key Question: What do you worry about? We wanted to start the month on courage helping preteens think about the times they feel scared or anxious. When we can identify what makes us scared, we can figure out a plan to help us through those moments.
We kick off October in Exodus 2:1-10 where we meet Moses and his family. Moses was born in a time when Pharaoh commanded that all Hebrew baby boys be killed. Moses mother and sister had courage to keep him alive. God rescued Moses through Pharaoh’s daughter who ended up bringing him into the palace as her own son and raising him as an Egyptian.
Bottom Line: You can do what you should even when you don’t know what will happen next. Knowing that God is with us and will help us can give us the courage to keep going, even in the face of fear. We won’t always know what will happen, but we can trust God to work it all out.
Key Question: What have you had to do that you didn’t feel ready for? When we’re feeling anxious or scared about something we need to do, we can find courage by reminding ourselves how God has helped us in the past. We hope that preteens start thinking through the ways God has been faithful to them and find the courage to do what needs to be done.
Next, we head to Exodus 3-6:12 and 7:1–12:42 where we continue Moses’s story and discover what happened when he saw a bush that was on fire . . . but wasn’t burning up. Now, that alone might make you a little nervous, but then he heard the voice of God. God asked him to go up against the most powerful ruler of his time—to ask Pharaoh to set the Israelite slaves free. In this incredible story, we see how God helped Moses face his fear and rescue the Israelites.
Bottom Line: You can do what you should even when you don’t feel ready. We will all face moments where we have something to do and we don’t feel ready. In those moments, we can trust God, remember what we do know, and keep going. We can trust that God will help us finish what needs to be done.
Key Question: How do you respond when things seem impossible? It’s important for preteens to think about how they react in different situations, especially the ones that can be stressful. When things seem impossible, it’s easy to throw in the towel and give up. We hope that preteens leave with a plan to respond to stressful situations with courage and be reminded that God will help them.
Next, we find out what happens after the Israelites escape Egypt. We pick up their story in Exodus 13:17–14:31. Everything was looking up for the Israelites until Pharaoh changed his mind. Moses and the Israelites found themselves trapped between the Red Sea in front of them and Pharaoh’s army in hot pursuit. But with God’s help, Moses showed courage in a tough situation. God made the miraculous happen, parting the Red Sea and allowing the Israelites to escape.
Bottom Line: You can do what you should even when things seem impossible. God has proved time and again that He can do the impossible. Many kids face situations that don’t seem to have a way out. We pray they will learn how they can trust God no matter what is happening in their life. God can help them find the courage they need to keep going.
Key Question: How can you be brave even when others are afraid? Preteens are starting to realize how their actions impact others. How they respond in the face of fear might impact how someone else faces fears of their own. We pray our preteens will discover how they can lead by example and show others what it means to put their trust in God and have courage.
We finish the month looking at the story of two guys we read about in Numbers 13–14. Joshua and Caleb demonstrated courage when they were sent with a group of 12 men to scope out the Promised Land. But what they found was intense. So intense, that most of the men were too scared to even attempt entering the land. Joshua and Caleb found the courage to speak up and remind the people that God would provide a way. God honored Joshua and Caleb for having the courage to trust Him.
Bottom Line: You can do what you should even when others are afraid. Following the crowd can be all too easy, especially when it comes to fear. But that doesn’t have to be the way. We hope that kids leave this week trusting God a little bit more and seeing how they can be an example to others by the way they have courage.