Nov. 21, 2019
We Gather Together
Preschoolers are continuing the story of Joseph and forgiveness within families.

Primary grades are reading about Elijah and the widow. In this story, both Elijah and a widow are in dire circumstances. Elijah had just told King Ahab that there would be no rain, except by his word, for the next few years. Not very popular with the king, he was hiding out; drinking from a brook and existing on food ravens brought him (as instructed by God). Now I'm thinking Elijah must have a lot of trust in God to rely on ravens for food.

Nevertheless, the brook dried up and God told him to look up this widow. When she found out he wanted food, she told him she only had enough for one more meal, after which she and her son would die.

Now here is where the story gets interesting; full of meaning. Elijah convinces her to go home and make him some bread. After she feeds him, she is to make a meal for herself and her son. Elijah tells her, "The jar of flour will not be used up and the jug of oil will not run dry until the day the Lord sends rain on the land." 1Kings 17:14 And that is what happened. Despite her hardship, she served Elijah first. Despite her fear, she trusted and received a blessing. Our various themes this week are "Listen to God", "Trust God", and "We can feed others."

Fifth through seventh graders are reading about the great flood.

Announcements: What's Coming Up?.

Nov. 24 - Sunday School for Grade 7 and below. Advent workshop following worship.

Dec. 1 - Sunday School for Grade 4 and below. 2s and 3s visit the library.

Dec. 8 - Sunday School for Grade 7 and below. Paedeia Christmas Party.

Join us from 4 - 5:30 December 8 for our Christmas Party. Bring a white elephant for the gift exchange. You can sign up h ere.

We Gather Together

This old hymn was written about the time the Pilgrims ventured across the ocean to Plymouth Colony. Thinking about the story above and how God provided for Elijah and his widow, made me think of God's provisions for some of our first immigrants - the Pilgrims. They came over in 1520. They got a late start and ended up leaving England a lot later than they had planned. This made their voyage even rougher and more difficult and their attempt to build a new civilization in Massachusetts a lot harder due to the weather. They were attempting to build the small colony in December and January. With many of them living in poor conditions on the boat for 6 months in winter weather, illness became rampant and by the November harvest of 1521 about half of the little over one hundred people had died. Yet, a three day harvest festival was held in gratitude for crops stored away and the arrival of another ship, the Fortune, bringing additional colonists and supplies. It was our first thanksgiving. Despite their hardships, these early colonists paused to say Thanks for what they had received. How much more do we have to be thankful for today!

Here are some suggestions for celebrating Thanksgiving with children:

  1. Leave a homemade treat and note on a neighbor's porch, especially a shut- or one who could use some cheer. Better yet, take it over when you know they're home.
  2. Volunteer at a food bank.
  3. Celebrate a quiet Thanksgiving at the beginning of the month so you can enjoy the tradition without all the chaos the real Thanksgiving may bring.
  4. Give children a role in the day. They can help with food preparation, make table decorations, or color placemats for the kid's table.
  5. Create a gratitude jar and have everyone put on a slip of paper something they are thankful for. The slips are put in the jar and can be read by the children during the serving of dessert.
  6. On Friday, instead of rushing out to shop, see a movie with the family or get ready for Christmas by watching a Christmas classic at home.

Some ideas from:

40 Fun Thanksgiving Activities for Kids to Try This Turkey Day, by Rebekah Lowin, OCT 17, 2019
6 new traditions to celebrate Thanksgiving with kids. Nov. 1, 2011

We gather together to ask the Lord's blessing
He chastens and hastens His will to make known
The wicked oppressing now cease from distressing
Sing praises to His Name, He forgets not His own

First Presbyterian Church of Libetyville 847.362.2174