As you prepare for your upcoming weekend and think about the lesson your few will hear, take some extra time to reflect back over your own life. Has there been a time when this week’s lesson was demonstrated in your life? Has God provided for you just as He provided for those in the Bible story that your little ones will hear this Sunday?
Was there a time that you were afraid of a task at hand? Did you pray, find your strength in God and move forward? Hmm. Sounds a little like the situation of David and Goliath. Have you ever made a wrong choice, only to discover that God still loves you, much like Zaccheaus did?
Have you ever been in need and out of nowhere someone showed up with just what you needed? Like the Good Samaritan? Have you ever had to move to a new town or to a new job with many details left unanswered? Did God show that He had a plan for you just like He did for Abraham?
When you share your stories with your few, it helps them make the jump from “this is what the Bible says” to “this is what the Bible means for my life.” And for preschoolers, it helps them move from simply hearing stories about God in the life of people long ago, to stories about God in the life of someone they know. Along with that come the first assurances that the Bible really is true. That God really does love them. That when they hear a story from the Bible, it isn’t just another storytime like they have each week at the library. But this truly is a Big Story that God began long ago, with the heroes of the faith whose stories are recorded in the Bible, and that story continues even today, through our own lives.
And it doesn’t matter if your story doesn’t involve calming the sea or feeding 5000. Preschoolers don’t have to navigate boats across a lake or provide dinner for the masses. But preschoolers DO have to face scary times, like moving to a new house, or sleeping in the dark. And while knowing God helped the disciples in a boat during a scary storm is comforting, your preschooler hasn’t met Peter in person. If you share a story of the time you were caught in a bad storm when God helped you not be afraid and kept you safe, that will give the Bible story even more credibility to trust until your preschooler has tested it himself. If you or someone you know has gone through a season of need, and someone showed up at your door with groceries, that helps your little ones bridge the gap between a story from long ago, to my life today. I can trust God. He took care of Peter and Mr. Stephen. He will take care of me.
Share your story. There’s a reason God wove it into your past. This may be why.