This week we are going to follow St. Joseph’s example and see how we can put God first!
So who was St. Joseph? I think we definitely know the basics! He was married to Mary and was Jesus’ father on earth? But what more can we learn about the man who helped to raise the son of God?
The first thing you must do is watch this video about St. Joseph so you can get a better understanding of what type of person he was.
If you would like to reflect on some more of the scriptures related to St. Joseph then you can use some of the scripture references below.
Most of these are taken from Open Bible – you can use their Topical Bible Search facility to find lots more ideas! Just remember to change the Bible translation to ‘Good News Translation’ when you click on the link!
If you have found any pieces of scripture that you think link to our theme this week then please add them in the comments box below to share the Good News so that we can all enjoy them!
As you will see from this and your own research, there isn’t an awful lot said about St. Joseph in the Bible. Although he is mentioned and he plays a crucial part in Jesus’ life, we never actually hear him speak. What do you think this tells you about St. Joseph’s character or personality?
Click here for the Music Resource
St. Joseph put the will of God before his own. It wasn’t easy to do.
This week’s song is all about putting God first and following his will. But what does it mean to follow God’s will? It’s simple, are we behaving the way he want us to? The easiest way to remember this and something you may have heard before is: “What would Jesus do?” In every situation we are faced with, we have to respond with God’s will, respond in the most loving way, respond the way St. Joseph would.
Can you create some actions to go with this song and teach it to the rest of the school?
You’re going to be given few scenarios, in your groups you’re going decide what to do using God’s will, in other words what would God want you to do? How would he want you to behave?
You just found out that your best friend has been telling everyone your deepest secret. What do you do?
Everyone in class got invited to a party but you didn’t get an invitation. What do you do?
You were playing a board game and lost your temper because you thought someone was cheating. What do you do?
You are in the playground and your “Friend” keeps picking on you “jokingly” in front of everyone. While it’s upsetting you, they apologise. What do you do?
Your classmate breaks your favourite headphones by accident and wants to
apologise. What do you do?
Click here for the Picture Resource
Have a look at these pictures. The first one is before St. Joseph decided to follow the will of God. What words could you use to describe St. Joseph in this picture?
This second picture shows Joseph after he followed the will of God. What words would you use to describe St. Joseph in this picture?
Once Joseph made the difficult decision to follow God’s will, he was happy. It isn’t always easy to follow God’s will and as you can see from the first picture, St. Joseph struggled with his decision and was unhappy. But once he decided to follow God’s will he was happy and proud of his decisions and actions.
.God will always be there to guide and support us. We all find it difficult to make the right decisions and that’s why we need to take time to talk to God about it.
We place our difficult decisions into the hands of God.
Draw around your hand and cut it out. In the palm, write the words: “I place into your hands”.
On the fingers write the decisions you are having difficulty with? Are you struggling to forgive a friend, remain motivated in school, help those in need, looking after younger siblings, helping around the house? Or perhaps write the name of someone who you know is having a tough time making the right decisions.
Once you have created your hand prayer, hold it tight and as a class say the following prayer together.
Today we place into your hands our difficult decisions, we turn to you to guide us and to show us the way. Although we know that the right way might not always be easiest, we are ready to listen to you, like St. Joseph listened and to be the very best young Christians we can be.
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Time to put God first!
St. Joseph always put God first. It is not always easy so lets take some time to make our own life clocks to act as a reminder to always make time for God and to always put Him first.
It’s easy to be distracted and misguided, so it is helpful to create a visual that point us back to the Lord. The “clock” craft here is a decorative reminder for us to keep our hearts focused on the “number one” thing first and foremost.
What you will need: • Paper plate • Paper card (in arrow shapes) • Scissors • Stickers (if desired) • Glue • Markers/decorative materials
Procedure: 1. Cut arrow shapes out of card paper, one larger than the other. 2. Decorate the paper plate, writing down activities or things that take attention in our lives (school, sports, etc.). Write “GOD” at the top. 3. Decorate with stickers and other pictures, if desired. 4. Glue a large arrow to the plate, pointing to “God.” 5. Use a butterfly fastener to attach the smaller arrow in the center, allowing it to swing around on the plate. Attach a verse or caption if you like, and a string to hang the plate in a place that you will see everyday to remind you to put God first.
The Prayer to St Joseph
Oh, St. Joseph, whose protection is so great, so strong, so prompt before the throne of God, I place in you all my interests and desires.
Oh St. Joseph, do assist me by your powerful intercession and obtain for me from your divine son all spiritual blessings through Jesus Christ, our Lord; so that having engaged here below your heavenly power, I may offer my thanksgiving and homage to the most loving of Fathers.
Oh St. Joseph, I never weary contemplating you and Jesus asleep in your arms. I dare not approach while he reposes near your heart. Press Him in my name and kiss his fine head for me, and ask him to return the kiss when I draw my dying breath. St. Joseph, patron of departing souls, pray for us. Amen
Click here for the Video Resource
St Joseph was betrothed to Mary, but he found out that she had become pregnant. This would not only bring shame on Mary and her family, but also Joseph. The easiest thing would have been to walk away, to tell Mary that he no longer wanted to marry her and raise a family with her. But he didn’t, he put God’s will before his own. He chose the hard path not the easy path.
St Joseph was a man of faith. It wasn’t easy to put God’s will before his own.
How easy do you find it to put God first?
Some of might be thinking ‘but I’m just a child, how can I put God first?’
There are loads of ways that you can listen to God and out him first. Take a look at this video.
This week I challenge you to put God first! Remember to:
Read the Bible
Talk about God with your family and friends
Colour in this picture or draw your own and place it somewhere in your bedroom. Let it act as reminder to pray everyday. God is our best friend and like every father figure he wants the best for us. He will guide us and keep us safe, just like he guided and kept St. Joseph safe.
Dear Lord, as we travel through this year, we ask you to help us to follow the plan that you have for our life. When we don’t know which way to turn, help us to listen for your voice as you give us direction. Amen
Click here for the Scripture Resource
This week’s scripture is short but very powerful!
Read the Scripture.
Whether you turn to the right or to the left, your ears will hear a voice behind you, saying, “This is the way; walk in it.” Isaiah 30:21
God has a plan for each of us for this year. He has a path that He wants us to follow and He wants us to be successful in reaching the goal that He has for us. As we face each new day of this year and try to follow the path that God wants us to follow, we may find that it is a lot like trying to solve a puzzles. We may often face difficult choices in deciding what God wants us to do. We may have to make frequent changes in the direction we are going. Sometimes we may find that we have made a wrong choice and we have traveled down a dead end path. When that happens, we have to back up and start over again! Following the will of God for our lives is not always easy, but there is help available. God is always there to help us if we will just ask Him to guide us. In the book of Isaiah, God told His people, “Whether you turn to the right or to the left, your ears will hear a voice behind you, saying, ‘This is the way; walk in it.'” God is still there! He is still behind us saying, “This is the way, walk in it.” We just need to be sure that we are listening!
Please help us Lord to have listening ears and open hearts. Guide us to your will and help us when we go down the wrong path. Help us to be more like St. Joseph and put your will above all things.