Review the story by asking:
What did you learn from the story?
What did you learn about Jesus?
How do you know Jesus valued wisdom (he asked lots of questions)?
Explain that the Rabbis are spiritual leaders and teachers of the Jewish law. In Jewish culture, asking questions is the method they use to search for wisdom and understand Scripture. How well a student understands the text or the teaching is determined by the questions the student asked. We know that Jesus impressed the teachers in the temple courtyard because the story tells us that Jesus was asking questions and as He did, they were amazed at how much He understood.
Say: One way to search for wisdom is always to be thinking of and asking good questions. Ask: Do you have any questions about the story we heard today? Anything you found confusing? (Be prepared for kids to ask you a question you don’t know how to answer. Assure kids sometimes we get answers to the questions we ask but, when we don’t get answers, it is important to keep searching for wisdom and to keep asking questions.)
Ask: What does it mean to be wise? (Wisdom is finding out what you should do then doing it. If someone knows what is right but doesn’t do it, they are not being wise.)
Ask: Is there a difference between being smart and being wise? (Encourage kids to explain their answers. This is an opportunity to discuss the difference between knowing a lot of facts and making wise choices.)
Ask: Where can we search for wisdom? What are ways we can become wiser? (learn what God says by going to church or reading the Bible, learning from mistakes, talk to wise people in your life, asking questions, etc.)
FIND THE BIBLE ACTIVITY: *hide a bible somewhere out of sight in the room. Invite family members to look around the room and think about where the Bible might be hidden. Let them figure out if their guess is correct by taking turns asking you YES or NO questions.
For example: Is it under a chair? Is it in a corner? Is it near so & so’s group?
After the Bible is found, show family members where the verse (James 1:5) is located. Use the Navigation Tips below to help them find James 1:5 in their Bibles.
Finding verses with younger kids who can’t read: Guide children to open the Bibles to the marked page. Point to “James” at the top of the page as you say, “James.” Then guide children to find the big number 1 on the page. Explain that this is the chapter number. Finally, guide them to look under the big 1 for the little 5; this is the verse number. Tell them to leave their finger on the verse as you read the verse aloud. Then lead everyone to say the verse together.
Finding verses with older kids who can read: Guide them to open their Bibles to the front and find the table of contents. Hold up a Bible opened to the table of contents to show the kids what the page looks like. When the kids find the table of contents, lead them to find James in the list under “New Testament.” You can help by telling them that James starts with the letters J-A. When the kids find James, lead them to look at the page number beside the word. Explain that the number tells them on what page they can find James. Help the kids find the page. When they find James, explain that the big numbers on the page are the chapter numbers. Help them find chapter 1. Explain that the small numbers are verse numbers. Help them find verse 5 in chapter 1.
Practice saying James 1:5 together
Ask for examples of choices they know are good, right, or wise. (Don’t cross a street without looking. Treat others the way they want to be treated. Always tell the truth.) How about unwise? (eating too much candy, doing or saying mean things, disobeying a parent or teacher)
What You Say: “To find our hidden Bible, you had to ask a lot of good questions. That’s how it is when we want to find wisdom, too. We ask questions like, ‘What’s the right thing to do?’ God promises to answer that question. Sometimes, He will remind you of a Bible story you heard that helps you know what to do. Other times, He might use an adult who loves you and knows what’s best. God wants to give you lots of wisdom, so learn to be good ASKERS. When you don’t know what to do, never be afraid to ask. Remember, wisdom is worth searching for.”
Parent: Share a time when you searched for wisdom and the Lord showed you what you should do. (This can be any kid-friendly scenario where you weren’t sure what decision to make and God used the Bible, a friend, a pastor, or a parent to help you know the wise thing to do.)
Prayer: Encourage family members to think of a question they have or an area in which they need wisdom. Maybe they are struggling with a friend and they aren’t sure what to do. Or they’re having a tough time getting along with a parent but they’re not sure what the problem is. Give family member a piece of paper and pencil or pencil crayons and invite family members to write or draw that thing that they need wisdom for.
Allow time to share about their situations if they want.
Close in prayer. By saying the phrase and inviting family members to repeat it:
“Dear God, help us be WISE.” (Pause as kids repeat.) “I need Your help to be wise.” (Pause as kids repeat.) “Remind us to ask for help when we don’t know the wise thing to do.” (Pause as kids repeat.) “We need Your help to choose the wise choice” (Pause as kids repeat.) “Help us MAKE wise choices this week.” (Pause as kids repeat.)
Close in prayer: (or say your own prayer including anything family members asked prayer for): God, thank-you that we can trust You no matter what and when we turn to You—when we search for wisdom—You will provide for us. Open our eyes and ears to Your Word, give us courage to ask questions, and, like Jesus, help us to grow in wisdom. In Your name we pray Amen!
Sometimes we have to look high and low to fnd the wisdom we need. Grab a partner and play a game of hide and seek with an object from around your house. One hides the object and the other searches high and low for its location. Take turns searching high and low.
Know that seeking wisdom can either be easy or hard but if you look you will fnd it!
Have you ever searched for treasure or created a treasure map just for fun? It’s exciting to think about uncovering some buried treasure hidden away, just waiting to be discovered! What if we thought about wisdom this way? We dig for treasure because those pieces of gold or jewels we might find are valuable. But the Bible teaches us that wisdom is more precious, more valuable than rubies! Think about it. Making wise decisions protects you. Good choices keep you from hurting yourself and others. That’s why searching for wisdom is so important. Thankfully, God has given us His word to guide us. And He sent Jesus to show us how to live and treat others.
Create a treasure hunt for your family. “Bury” your Bible somewhere in your home (under a bed, in the back of your closet, under a pile of clothes) and then send your family on a scavenger hunt with clues to fnd it or create a treasure map to lead them to your hiding spot.
Once you find it, read Proverbs 8:11 together and talk about why wisdom is more valuable than any hidden treasure!
Read Proverbs 4:5 We all forget things sometimes. But wisdom is something worth holding on to. As we follow Jesus each day, it will be easier and easier to make wise choices as we gain more knowledge and understanding. After all, no one wants to end up asking questions like . . . “Why did I say that hurtful thing? “Why did I do that hurtful thing? “Why did I cheat or lie or try to cover up my mistake?”
Wisdom protects us from making the kind of choices that can hurt us and others! That’s why it’s important to learn what God says. God made you, He loves you, and His way is best.
Write out the words of today’s verse on a piece of paper. Draw a box around the words wisdom and understanding. Mark an “X” over the word “forget.” Then draw a circular arrow around the word turn. Place your verse in a spot where your family can see it every day.
Ask God to help you listen to His word and follow Him as you make decisions this week.
God is the wisest and He is also the giver of wisdom! Think back to yesterday and recall the times you needed wisdom. Ask God to help you by praying the prayer below.
“Dear God, You are wise and give wisdom to those who need it. Help me to become wise and use my wisdom to always make the wise choice. Thank you, God. Amen.