Kidside Children's Lesson

Nehemiah and Ezra Celebrate the Completion
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It is easy to develop tunnel vision when working on a project, but Nehemiah sets a great example of being mindful of “the least of these” in the midst of his great project. He listens to the cry of the poor who feel they must sell their children into slavery and their fields to the wealthy in order to survive.

Read Nehemiah 5:1-3; 9-11 “Nehemiah Helps the Poor”

1. Take a moment to consider the people you with whom you have had contact lately. Do you know the challenges that other families are facing? Are you facing economic hardship as a family? (If yes, should you consider sharing that struggle with your church family.) Do you know friends who have lost income due to pandemic? What could you do to help them through this difficult time? Financial needs are not the only ones these days. Consider how the stress of pandemic has impacted yourself and others emotionally. Are you more lonely? Grumpy? Impatient? How can we accept and encourage each other in these difficult times?

Read Nehemiah 6:1-4; 6:15-16 “Nehemiah keeps his eye on the goal”

2. As Nehemiah and the Jews got nearer to completing their goal, the more pressure and more extreme tactics Sanballat, Tobiah and Geshem took. They attempted to lure Nehemiah out of the city so they could assassinate him. Reread Nehemiah’s response from verse 3. Is it easy to keep your focus on a huge project all the way to the end? What distractions prevent you from completing…your school work, home projects, or work assignments?

3. For the sake of family and community this idea has to be balanced out by a follow up question. Do you ever hide yourself in your work at the expense of family, church and community relationships? Talk as a family (or small group) about this difficult balance.

4. A century and a half after the destruction of Jerusalem, under Nehemiah’s leadership the walls were rebuilt in 52 days. (For every 1,000 days that they walls lied in ruins, 1 day of rebuilding was required.) What are some chores, projects or assignments that you have postponed for too long? What did (or will) it feel like to complete the job?

Read Nehemiah; 8:5-6; 12:27-43 “Dedication of the Wall and the People”

5. Nehemiah looked to Ezra the Priest to help point the praise and honor for the completion of the wall toward God. For a week the people gathered to hear the reading of “The Book of the Law” from sunrise until noon. There was time of confession, purification, and celebration of all God had done. Take some time to imagine the scene in Nehemiah 8 & 12. How do you think your joy of returning to Sunday School and being with friends is like their joy? How is it different?
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