“God Sends Esther to Save the Jews”- Esther 5:1-8, 8
Dig In to the Bible
- Read: Esther 5:1-8; 8
- In This Passage: Esther is a Jew who has to marry King Xerxes. But Haman, the king’s most powerful official, is trying to kill the Jews! Esther bravely asks the king to have dinner with her and then tells him about Haman’s plot. The king makes a rule that allows the Jews to defend themselves, and many lives are saved. Esther didn’t ask to become queen, but God puts us where we need to be.
- Bible Point: God puts us where we need to be.
- Summary Verse: “For I can do everything through Christ, who gives me strength” (Philippians 4:13).
- You’ll Be Teaching: God puts us where we need to be. All of us have places we have to be or things we have to do that we’d rather not. Esther might not have wanted to be queen—she certainly didn’t ask to be! But God put her in that place to save lives. Help kids see that wherever God puts them, they can serve him.
- Think About: What are some roles God has given you? What can you do for him in those roles?
Dig In to Prayer
- Pray that God would show kids how he wants to use them everywhere they go.
Introduce the Lesson
Say: Today we’re going to learn that God puts us where we need to be. When you’re a kid, that might be school or sports. For Esther in the Bible, it was becoming the queen married to a not-so-nice king. God gave her the job of queen!
Tell kids a job you’d love to have and a job you’d hate to have. Explain why.
Open a Bible to Esther 5, and say: It’d be great if all of us got our first choice of what to do with our time. But that’s not always how it goes! Sometimes God needs us in a special place to do his work. God puts us where we need to be. Right now, he’s put us here to learn from his special book—the Bible. And God is here, too—ready to talk to you! Pray, thanking God for putting us where we need to be.
Watch This Video:
Play This Game: “This Goes There!”
- parachute or large bedsheet
- several plush objects (stuffed animals or balls work well)
Lay the parachute on the floor, and have kids hold on to it around the edge. Place a plush object in the middle of the parachute; then have kids move the parachute up and down or sideways to make the object bounce around. After several seconds, point to a wall or corner of the room.
Say: Our toy friend needs to be over there. Let’s use our parachute to launch it that way!
Help kids aim the parachute; then on the count of three, send the object to where you pointed. If kids miss, put the object back on the parachute and try again.
Repeat, adding different plush objects and choosing different locations around the room. Celebrate when objects land where they need to be.
Talk About It
Say: It was fun to see the objects fly across the room. With our help, they all ended up where they needed to be. Just like we put the objects where they needed to be, God puts us where we need to be. He may not send us flying through the air, but he placed us in families that love us and with friends who play with us.
Tell about a place God put you recently. Perhaps he put you at the grocery store so you could smile and be nice to the cashier, or maybe he put you at a sports event so you could cheer for your team.
Ask: • Where’s a place God put you? Help kids get started, if needed. You might suggest the park, preschool, gymnastics class, or an organized sports team.
Say: God puts us where we need to be. When we’re where we need to be, we can help other people and make them happy! Ask kids to help you gather all the objects around the room. Pretend to encourage the stuffed animals as you put them away, telling them they did a good job going where they needed to be.
Play Worst-Case Scenario
Say: We’re going to play a game called Worst-Case Scenario. In this game, I’ll tell you a situation. One at a time, you’ll add a consequence, making the situation worse and worse until the world ends!
Here’s the situation: There’s a big spider in our room, and your job is to kill it. You don’t.
Ask a child to think of a consequence to start the game and share it with the whole group. For example, a child gets bit by the spider. Then challenge kids to continue the story, escalating what happens each time.
Ask: • Do you think those things could really happen? Why or why not?
• How important was your job to kill the spider in our story?
Say: In our Bible story, Esther had a job to do. We’re learning that God puts us where we need to be, and he put her in the role of queen so she could save the Jews. But what if she hadn’t done it? Worst-case scenario, Mordecai and other Jews would’ve died! Esther was an important part of God’s plan to save the Jews.
But why? Are we really that necessary to God’s plan? Couldn’t he have saved the Jews without Esther? Does God really need us? Let’s dig in to that.
Say: Let’s look at one of the jobs Jesus gave us.
Read Matthew 28:19-20.
Ask: • Why is this an important job?
• What’s the worst-case scenario if we don’t do this job?
Say: Whether or not God needs us to be the ones to tell others about him, he wants us to be! He’s called us to do his work!
In the Bible, a man named Paul knew God gave him a special role in this task of sharing the news about Jesus.
Read Galatians 1:15-16.
Ask: • Do you think God has given all of us jobs before we’re even born? Why or why not?
Say: The Bible says God gave us work in advance. Maybe that’s before we were born, and maybe not…but he’s definitely thought it through before the job comes up!
Read Ephesians 2:10.
Say: God made you for a special purpose. He put you where you need to be. We might not always like the jobs God gives us to do, but we can trust his plan.
Read Romans 9:20-21.
Distribute paper and pencils. Say: Let’s think about our own best-case scenarios. Think about what you feel like God has called you to do and where he’s put you. If you can’t think of something specific, remember that God has called all of us to tell others about him.
Write or draw about the best-case scenario—what awesome things God could do through you if you say yes to his call.
Allow time for writing and drawing.
Say: Hold up your paper as a commitment to do God’s work where he’s put you. I’m going to read a Bible verse where another guy in the Bible, Isaiah, made that commitment.
Read Isaiah 6:8.
Pray: God, you’ve put us where we need to be. Help us do your work there. Here we are; send us. In Jesus’ name, amen.
Do This Craft: “Purpose Puzzle”
- poster board
- glue sticks
- envelopes (1 per child)
Set out supplies. Have kids follow these instructions to make their own puzzles.
- Choose a full page from a magazine, and cut it out. (Younger kids can tear it out.)
- Glue the page to a piece of poster board, making sure to glue the entire page.
- Cut the poster board right around the page.
- Cut out puzzle piece shapes to turn the magazine page into a puzzle. (Older kids can help younger kids with this step.)
Have kids trade puzzles with a partner and try to solve the puzzles. Then have each child put his or her puzzle in an envelope and write his or her name on the envelope. (Older kids can help younger kids write their names.)
Talk About It
Ask: • Tell about a puzzle you’ve done.
• What’s it like when you just can’t find the right puzzle piece?
Say:If you’ve ever gotten all the way to the end of a puzzle and realized a piece was missing, it was probably very frustrating! In a puzzle, every piece has a place. And no other piece can take that place! In the same way, God has a special job for you that no one else can do. God puts us where we need to be. We’re all important pieces of his puzzle!
Wrap It Up:
Say: Today we learned that God puts us where we need to be. We heard how he put Esther in the palace and made her queen so she could help God’s friends. Since Esther prayed for God’s friends, let’s pray for others.
You’ll begin the prayer. Briefly pray for someone you know. Encourage each child to pray for someone he or she knows. The prayer can be as simple as, “God, I pray for Grandma.” Avoid forcing children to pray if they don’t want to.
Close in prayer: God, we know you hear us. Thank you for putting us in friendships and families with the people we prayed about. We love you. In Jesus’ name, amen.
Say: God puts us where we need to be. Sometimes that means he puts us in a place like church. Sometimes that means at home in a virtual class. And sometimes that means he puts us in a friendship, like with the friends we prayed about. God can do great things where he put us, like he did great things with Esther. I’m glad that God put you in our family.