David C Cook COVID-19 Response

Upper Elementary

I Need Help!

Lesson 1 


Summer 2021


By: RLD Editorial Team 


June 06, 2021

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Lesson Focus:

God hears the prayer of a broken heart.

Bible Basis:

1 Samuel 1:1—2:21

Materials Needed:

Step 1:

  • None

Summary & Links:

Students will discuss how they deal with negative emotions and watch a brief news clip of a mother stepping in to help her daughter.

Memory Verse:

The LORD is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.
—Psalm 34:18

I call on the LORD in my distress, and he answers me.
—Psalm 120:1

Step 1:

Students will discuss how they deal with negative emotions and watch a brief news clip of a mother stepping in to help her daughter.

Materials Needed:

  • None

As your students enter the classroom, ask them to write on the whiteboard a negative emotion they have experienced. Be sure to add your own contribution. Answers may include sadness, fear, anxiety, loneliness, despair, etc. After everyone has contributed, ask the group if they can think of others to add to the list; write them on the whiteboard as your class calls them out.

Negative emotions come in all shapes and sizes. Some negative emotions can be healthy in a way. For example, fear makes us instinctively jump away if we find ourselves too close to something dangerous. But other negative emotions can be just plain crippling. Despair and doubt can leave us unable to complete basic activities. When that happens, it can seem impossible to escape without some kind of help.

This last year has been hard for a lot of people, causing an increase in all kinds of difficult emotions. Between a global pandemic, political division, financial uncertainties, and racial attacks, there’s a lot that people are anxious about.

  • Have you felt anxious during some of the events this last year? What was the event? How did you feel? (Accept all reasonable answers. Encourage students to share and listen respectfully without assigning blame to people groups or political parties or leaders.)

The Mental Health in America (MHA) organization notes that cases of clinical depression and anxiety, along with other mental health concerns, have been on the rise over the past few years. The events of the last year have made the numbers rise even quicker.

  • When you feel nervous, sad, scared, or anxious, what kinds of things make you feel better? (Answers may include praying, talking to a family member or close friend, going for a walk, reading a book or playing a game, etc.)
  • Have you ever been afraid or upset and needed someone’s help to overcome a challenge? Tell us about it; what was the outcome? (Encourage students to share their experiences; be prepared to share your own.)

When we experience difficult emotions, having another person to support us and talk with us can be tremendously helpful. Today we’re going to talk about someone who was overcome by negative emotions—in fact, she was brokenhearted and full of despair. Let’s see what happened.

MIHA Source material: https://mhanational.org/issues/state-mental-health-america

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
  • Index cards (1 per student)
  • Pens/pencils (1 per student)
  • Whiteboard and markers (or screenshared webpage)

If your class is meeting online, invite students to bring an index card and pen/pencil with them to class.

As students clean up from Step 3, move back toward the lesson focus. During the first part of our lesson, we talked about different emotions that can leave us needing help from others. For Hannah, that emotion was sorrow.

  • Why was Hannah so sorrowful about not having children? (Answers will vary but should include: Peninnah made fun of her; Hannah felt lonely; in her culture, childlessness indicated that she had lost favor with God; that was the main job of women in their society—to bear and raise children—so she felt she had no purpose.)

God’s promise to be there for us when we need Him is the one thing we can always depend on. Ask for two to three volunteers from the audience. Ask your volunteers to copy the references of the verses in the following article onto the whiteboard. If your class is meeting online, you can share your screen to show the verses.)

6 Bible Verses for Broken Hearts

After the six verse references have been written on the board or shown on the screen, hand out an index card and writing utensils to each of your students. If your class is meeting online, invite students to have those items ready. Ask for volunteers to look up and read the verses from their Bibles or Bible apps. Ask your students to copy the verse references on one side of their index cards so that they can look them up again at home. Let’s use the rest of the class period to make reminder cards to help us remember today’s lesson. I want you each to pick one of the verses on the board that is particularly meaningful to you and write out the entire verse on the blank side of your index card.

This week, keep this reminder card in a place you will see it often. Look up one of the verses each day and ask for God’s help in challenging or painful situations. You might be surprised by how God shows up!

Close in prayer.

Spread the word

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