Out of the Running

Episode Theme

God-worshiping: Training for the everlasting crown.

Memory Verse

1 Corinthians 9:25

Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last, but we do it to get a crown that will last forever.

Have you ever had to choose how well to do something?  You could decide to do your best, but you could also decide to do just enough to get the job done.  Here’s a Bible story about choosing how hard to try.

Adam and Eve were the first people that God created for his world.  They had two sons:  Cain and Abel.  As they grew up, Cain became a farmer and Abel was a shepherd.  When it was time to give an offering to God, Cain brought some of the crops he had grown.  Abel chose the best of the lambs that he had for his offering to God.   The Bible says that the Lord was pleased with Abel’s offering, but not with Cain’s offering.  Do you know why?  Did God prefer shepherds over farmers?

Actually, God’s reaction had nothing to do with what the two brothers brought to him.  God’s reaction was based upon the effort behind the offerings.  God knew that Abel had carefully chosen to give the best that he had to God, so God was pleased.  God also knew that Cain had just grabbed something as his offering; Cain had done “just enough to get by,” so God told Cain that his offering was not acceptable.  Cain became so angry that he actually killed his brother Abel.  This was the very first murder in the Bible.   

The next time you need to choose between doing a “good enough” job and doing your best work, remember Cain and Abel.  God says that everything we do can be used as an offering to him.  If we try our best, even if we fail, God sees our work and is pleased.  When we are careless or thoughtless in what we do to honor God, he knows and is not pleased.  Choose your offerings to God carefully!

This page can be found at http://kidscorner.reframemedia.com/bible/devotions/out-of-the-running