- Talk about a time when you thought something bad was going to happen and something good happened instead. Maybe your team came back from being way behind to win the game, or someone you know was really sick but got better. (Answers will vary. Have a story from your own life prepared to get discussion going.)
- How did you feel when you realized the bad thing wasn’t going to happen after all? (Students may talk about feeling relieved, overjoyed, amazed, etc.)
We all love a good surprise. But sometimes we’re surprised in life by something bad. We live in a world where there is life and death. People are born, and people die. You may know someone who has died. Even with doctors and hospitals, sometimes people die and that can be very sad.
Two years ago, Drew and Ariann Corpstein, a young couple living in Iowa, were expecting a baby. When Ariann was pregnant, a medical test revealed that the baby’s brain wasn’t developing properly.
Doctors told the Corpsteins some sad news—they believed that when the baby was born, he would only live for hours—or a few days at the most. The Corpsteins told their family and closest friends their sad news. They did not decorate a nursery. They did not have a baby shower. They trusted that God was in control of their baby’s life, and they prepared to say goodbye. Let’s watch a video that tells more of their story.
Share the following video with your students [1:45]:
Meet ‘Matthew the Great’: The Iowa baby who defied a terminal diagnosis and lived
- What happened that surprised everyone? (Students may share that the baby didn’t die as the doctors had predicted and did not have the condition they thought he had.)
- How do you think Matthew’s parents, Drew and Ariann, felt? (Answers will vary. Students may say that they were amazed and couldn’t believe what was happening, they were thrilled.)
When baby Matthew was born, doctors discovered that his brain was fully formed. It had just been pushed to one side of his skull by fluid. But a surgical procedure could fix the problem and allow Matthew to live a normal life.
Drew and Ariann were astounded and overjoyed! They had come to the hospital prepared to say goodbye and now they would get to take their baby home healthy! They shared the news with overjoyed family members and friends. No one could believe it! Matthew was going to live!
Sometimes the reality of death can feel sad and even frightening. But as believers in Jesus, we don’t have to fear it. Jesus has conquered death and offers us eternal life. When Jesus was on earth, some of His friends experienced the death of someone they loved very much. But Jesus showed that He has absolute power over death.