David C Cook COVID-19 Response

Middle School

Believing Prayer

Lesson 8 

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Summer 2022

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By: RLD Editorial Team 

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July 24, 2022

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Lesson Focus:

God always answers genuine prayer.

Bible Basis:

Mark 11:12-14, 20-24

Materials Needed:

Step 1:

  • Internet access

Summary & Links:

Students will consider the part faith plays in a magic trick and then relate that to something infinitely more reliable: the power of prayer.

Memory Verse:

“This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us.”
—1 John 5:14

Step 1:

Students will consider the part faith plays in a magic trick and then relate that to something infinitely more reliable: the power of prayer.

Materials Needed:

  • Internet access

Have you seen any magic tricks recently? Perhaps a younger sibling has been showing off a new trick with a card or a coin, or you’ve seen a professional on a TV show such as America’s Got Talent. Seeing a magic trick in action can be quite an amazing thing. When you don’t know the secret for how the trick is done, it looks as if the magician is doing the impossible. On the flip side, successfully impressing an audience with magic feels very rewarding. It means everything has gone as planned. Let’s see an example:
Show the following video [3:32; stop at 3:13]:
GAMBLING WITH KIDS | Magic For Humans SEASON 3

  • How did the children in this video interact with the magic trick, before and after learning all of the rules and the method behind the trick? (Accept all reasonable answers. They displayed amazement at how much harder it was after the practice round. They were surprised by the broccoli caveat.)
  • What role did faith play in this magic trick? (Accept all reasonable answers. The children believed in their abilities to choose the cups with the coins, and the magician believed in his ability to trick the kids through the illusion.)
  • What about when the kids’ attempts to guess the cups correctly failed? Why wasn’t their “faith” strong enough to get the right answer? (Answers will vary; be sure your students understand that anything we put our faith in other than God can fail, but God never fails.)
  • In real life, have you ever experienced something that seemed impossible—something miraculous—that couldn’t be explained away as a magic trick? (Answers will vary. It could be something like an unexpected recovery from illness or injury or family friends who were told they couldn’t conceive and then did. Perhaps it is something more like overcoming a fear, making new friends after a move, or anything else they once felt was impossible.)

God can help us through even the most impossible situations. But God works through miracles, not magic. He does not use tricks or illusions. Through God’s own power, He brings about true and holy change. Somewhat like magic, we may not always see how God is at work answering our prayers, but in time, we will see the effects of God’s hand. Today we will hear of one of Jesus’ most unusual miracles, and what it can teach us about fruit, faith, and prayer.

Looking for Steps 2, 3 & 4?

You can find Steps 2 and 3 in your teacher’s guide. To purchase a teacher’s guide, please visit: Bible-in-Life or Echoes.

Step 4:

Materials Needed:

  • Internet access
  • Paper
  • Pencils/pens
  • Optional: colored pencils or markers

If your class is meeting online, invite students to bring supplies with them to class.

Jesus used the fruitless fig tree as an example to encourage His disciples to have faith as they pray, but to bear other fruit as well. People connected to God can bear fruit such as love, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, and self-control.

  • Which of these fruits would describe your words and actions? (Answers will vary. Students will know whether they are rich in love for others and demonstrate their love in action, or whether they are ones who boldly champion goodness in the world, or whether they’ve come through trials having developed or demonstrated patience or self-control.)
  • What type of fruit might you pray to develop? (Answers will vary and build on the conversation from the previous question. Some may struggle to find a sense of peace for themselves or to bring peace to others. Others may find themselves impatient when going through trials or waiting for answers. Still others may find it difficult to love those they dislike.)
  • What type of fruit might you pray that our church would be known for? (Answers will vary. It would be nice for every church to bear every fruit, but perhaps there is something in particular that resonates. You might pray that your worship services would be a place of peace in a chaotic world, or that your service teams would be known in the community for their kindness and generosity to those in need, or that you’d be known as a people with faith enough to pray big prayers. Encourage students to think of the needs in and around them and develop their answers from there.)

Hand out paper and pens/pencils (or invite students to have those items ready at home). Having discussed these questions, have each student draw a picture of a tree or other flowering or fruit-producing plant. The plant can represent themselves, their church, or another group they are part of that they pray would be a witness for Christ in the world. (If you’re using the optional supplies, students can use those items for their drawings.)

Have students draw fruit to represent their prayers for spiritual fruit. These pictures can be used as a prayer prompt in the week ahead, as students look to the pictures and remember their prayers for how they/their church/etc. might grow in faith and fruit.

Close in prayer.

Spread the word

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