Crossroads: Listening to God

Matthew 2:13-23

Your Story

Talk about a time when you listened to God and God kept you safe, helped you, or showed you what to do.

My Story and the Bible Story

Have you ever felt like God was telling you to do something? There have been times when I felt like God wanted me to call someone on the phone. When I did, I learned that the person was having a tough time and I could help just by listening. After I listened and offered my help, the person usually said, “God knew just what I needed.” There are times when we know that God is talking to us. There are times when it feels like God is giving us directions. When we follow, amazing things can happen. For us, most of the time God’s directions don’t deal with danger and safety. But for Mary, Joseph, and Jesus, following God’s directions meant that Jesus stayed safe.

Read Matthew 2:13-23.

Mary and Joseph had to leave town quickly. They left during the night and headed to Egypt because a leader named Herod knew that Jesus had been born. He knew Jesus would be a threat to his power, so he tried to kill Jesus. But the angel warned Mary and Joseph, and they kept Jesus safe by taking him away from Herod to Egypt. Finally, when it was safe in Israel again, they returned, but they didn’t go back to Bethlehem where Jesus was born. Instead, they went to Nazareth. Long before Jesus was born, people called prophets had said these things would happen. God had told them, and they told the people. And later, after Jesus was born, others would hear these prophecies and know that Jesus was the Messiah—the person they had been waiting for to save them. Because Mary and Joseph listened to God, Jesus was kept safe. He lived, and he grew up, and he would one day save the people from their sins.

Just like God asked the prophets, as well as Mary and Joseph, to listen, God asks us to listen too. Our situations may be different, but God still knows what’s best. God knows the right thing to do. When we listen, when we follow God’s directions, God can do amazing things. Because the prophets listened to God, the people discovered that Jesus was the Messiah. Because Mary and Joseph listened, Jesus survived. God can use us too. All we have to do is listen and obey. When you feel like God is talking to you, listen!

Discussion and Prayer

  1. Ask your family to talk about ways they feel like God has spoken to them. What has God asked them to do?
  2. What is God asking you to do as a family?
  3. How can you know what God is asking you to do? Talk about ways that you can hear from God.
  4. Pray, thanking God for speaking to us and asking for help to listen and obey.

Rev. Jessica Asbell is the Minister to Children and Families at First Baptist Roswell, where she has been serving since 2012. She has written the children’s curriculum for Smyth & Helwys’s Annual Bible Study for the books of Daniel; Ezekiel; Luke; Jonah; 1 Corinthians; 1, 2, 3 John and Jude; Colossians; The Story of Israel’s Ancestors: Living toward a Promise; and Where Faith & Family Meet: A Book of Weekly Devotions. She has also written for CBF’s Spark and Form and for Affect in CBF’s fellowship! magazine. Married to Jonathan Oravec, Jessica reads every chance she gets.

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