The Bible tells us of two young sisters, Martha and Mary of Bethany, who were close friends with Jesus. These women shared several important events of Jesus' life. The story of these women is important, not only because of their relationship with Christ, but also for the lessons that can be learnt from their lives. Mary and Martha stories can be found in the Gospels of Luke and John. Lazarus, Mary and Martha's brother, is described in the Gospel of John.
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Jesus Visits Martha and Mary (Luke 10:38-42)
Jesus visited Martha and Mary's house. Martha prepared food for Jesus while Mary sat and listened to Jesus' teachings. Jesus said that Mary chose the better way. Find pictures in a magazine of people (gardening, cooking, etc.) and people listening, praying or sitting quietly. Cut and mount the pictures on index cards. Put the index cards in a bag. Draw one card out at a time and hold it up for students to see. Tell students to say "Mary" when they see someone listening and "Martha" when they see a picture of someone working.
Martha and Mary Ask Jesus for Help (John 11:1-44)
Because Lazarus was very sick, Martha and Mary sent a for Jesus. By the time Jesus arrived two days later, Lazarus had died. Jesus raised Lazarus from the dead. Help children understand that they can ask Jesus for help too. Arrange students into pairs and help them share a prayer request with their partners. Encourage students to ask Jesus for help for their partner.
Mary of Bethany Anoints Jesus (John 12:1-8)
Mary chose to anoint Jesus' feet with very expensive oil. This was frowned upon by some, but Jesus said she chose rightly and shared something very important to her with him. Have students find pictures in magazines of things that are important to them. Help students make a collage of the pictures. Have students go around and look at one another's pictures to find other students that have similar pictures.
Give to God
Just as Mary gave Jesus a precious gift, ask the children to make a picture to give to God of something that is important to them. Supply students with paper, glue, glitter, markers, crayons, yarn, buttons, stickers and other craft materials. Display the pictures in the classroom.
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