Virtual Alive Gang

Alive Gang – The Wise and Foolish Builders (31st May 2020)

Last week we learnt about what Jesus had to say about praying. Jesus gave us this example of prayer when he was telling people about God at a time we call ‘the Sermon on the Mount’. After he spoke about prayer, he then told a story or parable about two people who were building a house. A parable is a story which has a deeper meaning and helps people think about things in a new or different way. Let’s find out more.

The Best Foundation

You need:  a heavy book, different items to use as foundations such as paper, balls of wool or string, a cushion or pillow, stones or rocks, building blocks or lego.


Task: Work out which item holds and supports the book the best; this item is the best foundation. Make a layer of your chosen item and put the book on top. Does the book stay on the layer or is it wobbly?


Which item was the worst or weakest foundation?


Which item was the best or strongest foundation?


Reflect: When someone says that something has a strong foundation, what does that mean?


Having a strong foundation means it has a strong base, it can hold heavy things. Let’s discover more about what Jesus told us about strong foundations.

What does the Bible say?

Read the following story taken from Matthew chapter 7 verses 24-29. Jesus is teaching the people about God. You may also want to watch the video clip
“Everyone who hears these things I say and obeys them is like a wise man. The wise man built his house on rock. It rained hard and the water rose. The winds blew and hit that house. But the house did not fall, because the house was built on rock. But the person who hears the things I teach and does not obey them is like a foolish man. The foolish man built his house on sand. It rained hard, the water rose, and the winds blew and hit that house. And the house fell with a big crash.”

When Jesus finished saying these things, the people were amazed at his teaching. Jesus did not teach like their teachers of the law. He taught like a person who had authority.
Matthew
7:24-29

Quiz

Choose the right word to complete the sentences.

1.    The wise man’s barn / house stood strong when the storm came, because it’s foundation was on the rock / paper.

2.    The foolish / funny man’s house fell when the snow / storm came, because it’s foundation was on sand.

3.    When hard / soft times come, a person who puts Jesus’ teachings into practice will lie down / stand strong.

4.    When hard times come, a person who does not put Peter’s / Jesus’ teaching into practice / their memory will not stand strong.

Answers at the bottom of the page

Discuss

This story is not just about two people building a house. Let’s see if we can discover the deeper meaning of the story.


What does the storm mean in the story?


The storm is a symbol of when hard times come. Jesus said that everyone would have hard times in their lives.


What are some of the hard times we might experience?


This will be different for each of you. You might be ill, your parents might separate, you may not have enough money, your friends might move away or someone you love might die. At the moment many of us are going through hard times as we are lonely as we cannot see our family or friends due to the lockdown.


What should we do when hard times come

We have a choice to make: we put Jesus’ teachings into practice, or we do not put them into practice. If we are wise we will put his teachings into practice.

Jesus wants us to have strong foundations and stand strong when hard times come. That’s why he wants us to follow his teachings, as he knows that we will then stand strong.


What are Jesus’ teachings?


Jesus taught many things. He said the most important thing was to love God and to love others. This means being kind to others, sharing and giving to those in need. He said we should not worry and should trust God. We should find out more about what God is like and pray to him. We should tell others about how much God loves them.

Put into practice

Let’s find out what putting Jesus’ teachings into practice might mean for you. What situation are you facing where you could put Jesus’ teaching into practice? Below are eight suggestions or situations, but you may have some ideas of your own.

Which of the following teachings of Jesus might you do? All of these teachings come from the Sermon on the Mount (when Jesus told this story about the wise and foolish builders). There may be more than one teaching which can be used for each situation.

Teachings of Jesus

a.    Love your enemies (Matthew 5:43 – 47)

b.    Give to those in need (Matthew 6: 1 – 4)

c.     Pray (Matthew 6: 5 – 15)

d.    Use your money for what’s important (Matthew 6: 19 – 24)

e.    Remember that God cares about you (Matthew 6:25 – 32)

f.      Don’t worry; trust God (Matthew 6:33 – 34)

Situations

You are lonely as you can’t see your friends in lockdown.
Your dad is in hospital
You are facing bullies
Your best friend moves away
There are many people with many needs
You are not doing well in school
Your family pet died
There is no money for food
It’s a good thing to know what Jesus taught. But what really counts is when we do what He says. Jesus wants us to put his teachings into practice. He knows that when we follow his teaching, we will stand strong.

Prayer

Think about a situation you face where you want to put Jesus’ teaching into practice. Then say this prayer.
Dear God,
Thank you that Jesus taught us everything we need to know so that we can stand strong when hard times come.
In the situation I face, please help me to put your teachings into practice.
Amen.

Answers to the quiz!

1.    house – rock

2.    foolish – storm

3.    hard – stand

4.    Jesus’ – practice