Joseph's is Sold

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                                             Preschool Story

We all know the story has a good ending. But selling their brother into slavery
and then telling their dad he died? What were they thinking?!
It's hard to imagine this kind of scenario in today's society, especially in your
students' families. But kids still face the same kinds of emotions that led to
Joseph's being sold: jealousy, anger, and hatred, for starters. Dealing with those
feelings is important to building strong character. But perhaps even more
important is learning to persevere through hard times in life. Kids need to know
that God uses those hard times to shape them into something special.
These sessions give kids a firsthand look at Joseph's amazing story and how
they, too, can let God build their faith through difficult situations.

                                 KEY SCRIPTURES
Genesis 37:12-36
1 Peter 1:6-7

"These trials will show that your faith is genuine. It is being tested as fire tests
and purifies gold-though your faith is far more precious than mere gold. So when
your faith remains strong through many trials, it will bring you much praise and
glory and honor on the day when Jesus Christ is revealed to the whole world"
(1 Peter 1:7).
                                   • NO PREP •

                         BIBLE EXPERIENCE
Objective: Children will understand that God works good in our lives even
in difficult times.


               multicolored coat

Time: 10 to 15 minutes
Preparation: none
SAY: Let's talk about how God can make good things come out of bad.
Share a personal story or a story you know about how a bad situation ended up
good. Ask if one or two volunteers can share a similar story.
Open your Bible to Genesis 37:12-36, and show children the words. SAY: The
Bible tells us about Joseph. He had lots of brothers, who were jealous of
him. His brothers thought their dad loved Joseph more than he loved them.
One day their father gave Joseph a beautiful coat with lots of colors. Kind
of like this one! Ask a volunteer to put on the coat and stand in front of the
others. Lead all the kids in saying: Wow, Joseph! You look great in that
beautiful coat! Have "Joseph" turn around and model the coat for everyone. But
this made Joseph's brothers even more angry and jealous of Joseph.
ASK: • When have you been jealous?
• When has someone been jealous of you?
SAY: You know what the brothers did? They made a plan to get rid of
Joseph. When their father wasn't looking, they took Joseph's coat. (Take
the coat from the volunteer.) Then they put Joseph in a deep hole until they
could decide what to do with him. Ask Joseph to sit on the floor. Then have
everyone form a tight circle around him and raise their arms high, like a high wall
of a hole.
ASK: • How do you feel down there, Joseph?
SAY: The brothers took Joseph out of the well and sold him to some
travelers going to Egypt. Have all the children sit down.
ASK: • What do you think Joseph was feeling when he became a slave?
• What do you think Joseph thought about his future?
• Have you ever been through a hard time? Explain.
SAY: You know what?       GOD USES HARD TIMES TO SHAPE US. God
was watching out for Joseph and had a plan for him. Eventually Joseph got
a job with Pharaoh, and he helped thousands and thousands of people live
through a famine, which is a time there's no rain and little food.
Read aloud 1 Peter 1:7.
ASK: • What are some ways God can use hard times to shape you and me?
Ask everyone to gather around so they can hold onto the coat as you pray and
thank God for the hard times in our lives.

Use "Persevere!" it: Innovative Tools for Children's Ministry: New Testament to
help reinforce the Bible Point,    GOD USES HARD TIMES TO SHAPE US.

This lesson can be used to help children discover...



               God's Plans


                           • PREPARE IN ADVANCE •

                        OBSTACLES, OF COURSE
Objective: Children will navigate an obstacle course to reach a reward.



               cookies or doughnuts

Time: 10 to 15 minutes
Preparation: Set up a simple obstacle course outside or in a large room or gym.
You might include a slide, sawhorses, or tires for kids to run through.
Gather kids together, and show them how to run through the obstacle course.
SAY: We'll take turns going through this obstacle course of "troubles." At
the end, you'll each receive a tasty prize! After each child has finished the
obstacle course, distribute the snack. As children eat, ask:
• What was the hardest part of the obstacle course?
• What kept you going when the course was difficult?
Tell kids about the story of Joseph's trials in Genesis 37, and then have a
volunteer read aloud 1 Peter 1:6-7.
ASK: • What troubles do we face in real life?
• What good things come from hard times?
• What can we look forward to when we're going through hard times?
SAY: When the obstacle course was difficult, you kept going because you
knew a terrific prize was waiting for you. When life gets tough, we can keep
going because we know that         GOD USES HARD TIMES TO SHAPE US
                                    • NO PREP •

                       PERSEVERANCE PRIZES
Objective: Children will remember that they can trust God in hard times.


               aluminum foil

               1 juice-can lid per child

               paper clips

               1-foot lengths of 1-inch

               heavyweight blue or red ribbon

               tacky glue

Time: about 15 minutes
Preparation: none
Give each child a 6-inch length of aluminum foil and a juice-can lid. Have them
wrap the foil around the lids. Prompt kids to think of something that has been
hard for their families to go through. Give each child a paper clip, and instruct
them to use a bent end of the clip to etch pictures in the foil that represent their
hard times. For example, they could etch a broken heart or a sad face. Ask kids
to place their "medals" facedown in front of them and to each choose a piece of
ribbon. Help each child tie the ribbon into a loop with a knot. Show kids how to
attach the ribbon to the medal by applying a dot of tacky glue to the top of the
medal and pressing the ribbon firmly onto the glue. Have them pinch the lids and
ribbons together between their fingers until they dry.
Discuss the following questions with your kids:
• What is an award you've won?
• What did you have to do to win that prize?
Tell kids briefly about Joseph's hardships in Genesis 37. Read aloud 1 Peter 1:6-
ASK: • Why should we have joy when we face hard times?
• What kind of "prize" can we earn by going through hard times?
Encourage kids to wear their medals to remind them that facing hard times will
get them a prize only God can give them.

                                    • NO PREP •

                  NOTHING COMPARES TO JOY
Objective: Children will consider possible tough times and possible


                whiteboard and markers or chalkboard and chalk


Time: 15 to 20 minutes
Preparation: none
Read aloud 1 Peter 1:6-7.
ASK: • What is a trial?
SAY: Let's take a look at one example of a trial in the Bible. Tell kids the story
of Joseph in Genesis 37. Have them brainstorm a list of possible trials they might
go through, and write them in a column on a whiteboard or chalkboard. Start a
corresponding column with possible outcomes for each of the trials.
Have kids form trios, and assign each trio one or two trials on the board. Have
them recite 1 Peter 1:7 together, and then discuss what good things might result
from persevering through the trial.
After a few minutes, have each group share the good things that could come
from their trials. In a third column on the board, list all the good things that could
happen from the trials. Then erase all the trials and outcomes columns, and have
kids consider all the good things. Repeat the memory verse together.

                                   • NO PREP •

                                • STUDENT LED •

                           NEEDFUL HANDS
Objective: Children will commit their hard times to God in prayer.


               disposable plastic gloves

               permanent markers

Time: 5 to 10 minutes
Preparation: none
Have a volunteer read aloud 1 Peter 1:6-7. Give each child a pair of disposable
plastic gloves. Ask them to think about the trials, or hard times, they're going
through or have gone through. Have them write those hard times on their gloves.
Then instruct kids to put the gloves on their hands and fold their hands in prayer.
Lead the kids in prayer, asking God to help them through their hard times and to
bring them joy during the hard times.

Movie Clip: Blessings in Disguise
Movie Title:Harriet the Spy (PG)
Start Time: 24 minutes, 30 seconds
Where to Begin: Harriet and Mr. Waldenstein are having a stare-down at the
dinner table.
Where to End: Harriet, Miss Gully, and Mr. Waldenstein sit down at the movie.
Plot: Miss Gully has invited Mr. Waldenstein for dinner. Harriet isn't sure about
this man. When Miss Gully burns the bratwurst, Mr. Waldenstein calls it a
blessing in disguise because now they can all go out to dinner and a movie.
Review: Use this clip to show how God can take bad things in our lives and
make something good out of them. Joseph could have given up when his
brothers sold him into slavery. Instead, he let God use him for greater things.

After setting up and showing the clip, ask:
• Have you ever had a blessing in disguise, which is something that went
wrong at first but ended up being good? What happened?
• How did it make you feel?
SAY: When Joseph's brothers sold him into slavery, it was a terrible time.
Joseph had no idea what God had in store for him. But God turned that
situation into a blessing in disguise. Because of what happened to him,
Joseph was able to help his family and his whole nation! God always
knows what is best for us.
Read aloud 1 Peter 1:6-7.
ASK: • Do you trust God to work things out? Why or why not?
• What would help you trust God when things are hard?

                           • PREPARE IN ADVANCE •

                   NO SLAMMIN' THE SALMON
Objective: Children will see how God helps us persevere through hard

               index cards


               several skeins of yarn in enough colors so there is 1 color for
               every 2 children


               small plastic bags

               fish-shaped crackers

               picture of a salmon

Time: about 15 minutes
Preparation: Before class, write the following directions on the cards, one
direction per card. Make one complete set of directions for every two children.
Wrap the different-colored lengths of yarn around objects in the classroom, such
as chairs, table legs, and doorknobs, so that the yarns are tangled. As you wrap
the yarn, tape a set of directions onto each color of yarn in four places. At the
end of each length of yarn, tape a plastic bag with fish-shaped crackers in it. Try
to hide the end of the yarn to keep the crackers out of view at the beginning of
the game.
(Directions: 1. Hungry, fish-eating birds are nearby; do four jumping jacks. 2. The
water is polluted, and it's hard to swim; hop on one foot six times. 3. The journey
is long, and you're tired; jump up and down for 10 seconds. 4. A hungry bear is
splashing in the water; spin around three times.)
Have kids find partners, and then have partners sit together in a semicircle. SAY:
We're going to learn about a fish that teaches us about persevering
through hard times. Show the picture of the salmon and say: Salmon have to
take a treacherous journey from the ocean to the rivers to lay their eggs.
This journey takes them through many obstacles and hard times. Imagine
you're a salmon and it's time to swim to the river to lay your eggs.
Give each pair of kids an end of yarn, and have them follow it. Tell them there's a
prize at the end of the yarn. After all the kids have found the crackers, have them
sit in a circle. SAY: God gave salmon the ability to persevere through hard
times. God gives us the ability to persevere through hard times, too. Read
aloud 1 Peter 1:6-7.
ASK: • How did you feel when you continued to meet obstacles in your path
as a salmon?
• What are some difficult tasks in your own life?
• What can you do to encourage yourself to persevere through hard times?

                           • PREPARE IN ADVANCE •

                              JOSEPH SOLD
Bible Point:     GOD WORKS FOR GOOD.



               paper lunch bags



               cloth (optional)


Time: 15 to 20 minutes
Preparation: Create a simple Joseph puppet for each child in class. For each
puppet, stuff a paper wad inside a small paper lunch bag, and use yarn to tie off
the bag beneath the paper wad to make the head. Make a puppet for yourself,

                            A HAPPY ENDING
Have kids form a circle and sit down. Open your Bible to Genesis 37, and show
children the words. Give each child one of the puppets you prepared and several
markers. Lead kids in the following actions.
SAY: Jacob lived in the land of Canaan. He had many sons, but Joseph was
his favorite. Have each child draw a face on his or her puppet as you say:
Jacob loved Joseph so much that he gave him a beautiful coat of many
colors to wear. Joseph's brothers were jealous. Let each child use markers to
decorate a sheet of paper or a cloth square as Joseph's coat. Help kids wrap the
coats around the puppets. Secure the coats with tape.
One day Joseph went to visit his brothers, who were watching over their
sheep. (Make your puppet walk.) Joseph's brothers took his coat and threw
him down into an empty well. (Remove the puppet's coat, and place the puppet
on the floor.) Then they sold him as a slave to people who were traveling to
Egypt. (Wave goodbye.) They put animal blood on Joseph's coat. (Crumple
up the coat.) Then they went home and told their father that a wild animal
had killed Joseph. Jacob was very sad. (Rub your eyes as if crying.)
What Joseph's brothers did was wrong. Let's do an action rhyme to remind
us that God wants us to be nice. Lead children in the following action rhyme:
Joseph's 10 brothers were jealous.
And jealousy is not very nice.(Wag puppet back and forth.)
Just stop and think twice(hold hand up in front of you to make "stop" motion)
When you're not feeling right(wag puppet back and forth),
And God will help you all day and all night.(Bow puppet's head so it looks as if
the puppet is praying.)
SAY: God wants us to be kind and to get along with others. Joseph's
brothers meant harm for Joseph, but God turned the bad thing they did into
a good thing. God took care of Joseph in Egypt and made him very
powerful. In fact, he was in charge of all the food in the land. (Hold your
puppet up high.) God told Joseph about Pharaoh's dream: Soon there
wouldn't be enough food to eat. (Rub your tummy.) Joseph's brothers were
very hungry, and they came to Egypt to ask for food for their family. They
were afraid when they saw that it was Joseph who was in charge of the
food.(Cover your eyes.) But Joseph forgave his brothers and gave them all
the food they wanted. And the family lived together again! (Wave the puppet
in the air.) Even though the brothers meant for bad to happen, God used
what they did for the good.      GOD WORKS FOR GOOD.
SAY: What bad things happened to Joseph?
SAY: How did God use those bad things for good?
SAY: Has God ever turned something bad into something good in your life?

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