Family Connections by Children at IBC

By Jeremy Varnell
In Children
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14 2 Bible Story Picture

Last week, we looked at one of the prophets most well-known to kids when we talked about Jonah. Today, we learned about a prophet that might be the least well-known by kids, simply because of the nature of his story. Hosea was a prophet, whose life God used as a real-life analogy for the people of Israel and God. Hosea's wife Gomer continually ran away from her marriage to Hosea, engaging in all kinds of sin. You need only read the first couple of verses of the Book of Hosea to see that Hosea's love was not returned in the same way. The names of their children signified punishment for Israel's sin, 'No Mercy' for them, and a declaration that the way they behaved meant the Israelites were no longer God's people.

Hosea remained faithful to loving Gomer despite her continued wandering, which is where the story really hits home. Israel continually wandered away from God, pursuing other things to worship, and finding that their God forgave and pursued them. In chapter 3, we see that Hosea purchases Gomer out of the slavery in which she has found herself. And isn't that the most beautiful picture of our God, who pursues us when we are slaves to sin, purchasing our redemption by sacrificing his son, Jesus.

As you continue the conversation this week, I would recommend reading Hosea for yourself before reading it as a family. The most kid-friendly conversation around Hosea would utilize language about how God loves us with a never-ending love even when we struggle to love and obey Him.  If you would like tips on how to begin conversations about some of the more mature things addressed in the Book of Hosea, please feel free to contact me, and I would love to help.

Here are some questions to extend the conversation this week:

Elementary

  1. Have you ever run out of energy? What about patience? Have you ever "run out of love" for someone else? Since God's love is never-ending, does He ever get tired of loving us?
  2. God used Hosea's life to tell a hard story about the people of Israel. How do you think Hosea felt? Do you think he would rather have told a different story?

Preschool 

  1. What is the farthest you can stretch your arms? What is the farthest thing you can see? What does something never-ending look like? 
  2. God loves us with a never-ending love. Describe how it feels to be loved by a God, who loves you with a never-ending love.

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