Monday, June 9, 2008

The Widow's Mite (Tithing)

There is clip art that goes with this lesson. Please e-mail me if you would like the clip art and I will e-mail you with it. Thanks. Tiffany
Lesson: The Widow’s Mite

Things to Prepare:1. Popped popcorn in two bowls, small bowls for each participant.
2. Tithing Slips for each participant.
3. Empty cans for each participant.
4. Paper, crayons, stickers, anything to decorate your cans with.
5. Print and Cut out clip art, laminate if desired (use as flannel board pieces)

Opening Song: I’m Glad to Pay a Tithing (pg. 150 Children’s Songbook)

Opening Prayer:

Luke 11:28 or D&C 64:23

Quote: Elder Robert D. Hales –(Ensign, November 2002)
Tithing has been established in these latter days as an essential law for members of the Lord’s restored Church. It is one of the basic ways we witness our faith in Him and our obedience to His laws and commandments. Tithing is one of the commandments that qualifies us, by our faith, to enter the temple—the house of the Lord.

Object lesson: Popcorn Blessings (see below)
Have participants sit on the floor with the small bowls in front of them. Parcel out 10 kernels to each, pretty much using up one bowl. Then ask each participant if you can have one kernel, thanking each one who is willing to share, but just moving on from those who won't. Then, fill each bowl of those who shared overflowing with popcorn.

Explain that we receive an abundance of popcorn/ blessings if we give to the Lord what is already his.

Story: Tell the story of the Widow’s Mite -using pictures if desired. (My two year old sits better when there are lots of pictures that she can hold and help with) --From New Testament stories Chapter 34 pg. 94

Jesus was by the temple in Jerusalem. He was watching the people give money to the church. The people were putting their money into big boxes. Jesus saw many rich men put a lot of money into the boxes Mark 12:41
A poor woman came to the boxes. Her husband had died. She was a widow. She put in two pieces of money called mites. Two mites were not very much money. But the two mites were all the money she had Mark 12:42, 4
Jesus saw her. Jesus wanted to teach his disciples a lesson. He told them about the widow. Mark 12:43
Jesus told his disciples the rich men gave lots of money. But the rich men had more money at home. Mark 12:43
The widow had only two mites. She had no money at home. She gave all her money to the Church. She had given more to the Church than all the rich men Mark 12:44

Discussion: Talk about what the story is about.
· Is she paying her tithing?
· Why is her contribution more meaningful than the others?
· Why should we give all that we have?
· What does tithing go towards in the church?

Story: Tell the story of, The Empty Can (Friend, June 1999) Use the clip art if desired, for a flannel board story.

Alma J. Yates, “Empty Can,” Friend, Jun 1999, 2
Blessed are they that hear the word of God, and keep it (Luke 11:28).
I had been admiring the new baseball glove in the sporting goods store for weeks, hoping that some day it would be mine. Every day on my way home from school, I took the long way and stopped at the store to look and wish. There were lots of other mitts there, but only one that was just right for me. That was the one I grabbed each day. I pulled it onto my hand, pounded my fist into it, and pretended I was in left field, waiting for that long fly ball.
Each time I walked into the store, I crept down the last aisle, almost afraid to look, for fear someone had already bought it.
I already had a baseball glove, but one of the seams was coming loose, and it was worn and scuffed. I was planning to make the Little League all-star team, and I figured that I needed the best mitt possible.
My birthday was coming up. I’d hinted to Mom and Dad a hundred times that it would sure be nice to have that mitt at the sporting goods store. They nodded and smiled, but they didn’t make any promises. I even took my dad into the store and showed him what a great glove it was. He agreed with me, but the morning of my birthday, the glove was still there.
After my birthday dinner, Mom brought in my presents and set them before me. Right away I could see that my baseball glove wasn’t there. I tried not to be disappointed, but it was hard. And then I got a real surprise. Brother Tice came back from his vacation early and paid me twenty dollars for taking care of his dog and mail and mowing his lawn and stuff. I had already saved nineteen dollars, so with Brother Tice’s money, I had enough to buy my glove now!
As soon as I finished the last of my cake and ice cream, I raced to the sporting goods store. The man was just getting ready to put the CLOSED sign in the window, when I burst in and grabbed the glove.
I had eighty cents left over, so on the way home I stopped at the drugstore and bought a half pound of cinnamon bears.
I left with three cents in my pocket, my new glove on one hand, and my sack of cinnamon bears in the other. I couldn’t have been happier.
That night, I propped up my new glove on the dresser so that it would be the last thing I saw before I went to sleep and the first thing I saw when I got up in the morning. And all night long I dreamed of playing in the all-star game.
The next morning was Saturday, and no one had to wake me. As soon as the first bits of light streaked across my room, I was up and getting dressed. I snatched my glove and bounded for the door, knocking half the stuff off my dresser. That’s when I saw my tithing can. My empty tithing can.
Suddenly I got a sick feeling inside. Mom and Dad had always told me to pay my tithing before I used my money for anything else. I had always remembered to do that—until yesterday! Yesterday the only thing I had had on my mind was getting my baseball glove.
I looked down at it. I looked over at the paper sack that had only three cinnamon bears left inside. I swallowed hard and figured out how much money I had stolen from the Lord. I’d received twenty dollars from Brother Tice, so I owed the Lord two dollars. Two dollars! Where would I ever get two dollars before Sunday?
Clutching my glove, I promised myself that the next time I had two dollars I’d give it all for tithing. I sneaked out of the house and tried to forget about everything except the all-star game.
When I reached the park and showed my teammates my new glove, they all said that they were sure that I’d be able to catch any ball that came to me. But the first time Rodney hit a fly ball in my direction, I missed it. When Charlie knocked a grounder my way, it slipped right past me. The guys said that I just wasn’t used to playing with a new glove, but I knew that that wasn’t the reason. I couldn’t stop thinking of the two dollars I owed the Lord.
While the other guys kept playing, I headed for home, dragged myself to my room, dropped my glove on the bed, and stared at my empty tithing can. Finally I got on my knees and said a little prayer, telling the Lord that I was sorry for taking His tithing and using it for my glove, and that I would pay Him back as soon as I could. But I still had that sick feeling inside.
Slowly I set my baseball glove on the dresser and pushed it way back. Then I set my tithing can in front of the mitt.
“Mom,” I asked as I walked into the kitchen, “do you have any work I could do?”
She was making bread at the kitchen table and looked up at me like I might be feeling sick. “I thought you were playing baseball with your new mitt.”
“I went,” I muttered, hanging my head down, “but I need to earn a little money.”
“You need more money?”
“Well,” I stammered, “I owe somebody else some money, and I forgot about paying up before I spent it all.”
Mom thought for a minute. “The garage needs cleaning. I suppose if you did a really good job there I could give you fifty cents.”
Fifty cents wasn’t a lot of money, especially considering how much work was to be done in the garage, but I didn’t care. I needed to square myself with the Lord.
For the rest of the morning I worked in the garage. I stacked all the boxes, straightened all the tools, swept the floor, and hauled out the trash. I’d cleaned the garage before, but never as well as I did then. When Mom inspected my work, her eyes got big. “Well, Justin,” she exclaimed, “I’ve never seen the garage look so good. I think that’s worth at least seventy-five cents.”
“Brother Tuckfield,” I asked my neighbor across the street, “do you have any work a guy could do?” Brother Tuckfield was digging in his flower bed. He looked up and wiped a big drop of sweat from his nose.
“I’m trying to earn a little money,” I explained. “I’ll work hard. And I don’t charge much.”
“Well, there are some weeds along the ditch bank in my backyard. If you’d chop those down for me, I could pay you twenty-five or fifty cents.”
There was a jungle of weeds along Brother Tuckfield’s ditch. I worked for over an hour, pulling and chopping and digging. Before I quit, there wasn’t a single weed left along that ditch bank. Brother Tuckfield gave me fifty cents, and I went down the street still looking for work.
Sister Caldwell needed trash hauled out to the curb. That was another ten cents. Sister Hadfield wanted the grass raked in her front yard. That was worth twenty-five cents. Brother Henderson let me pull the weeds in his rose bushes. I ended up with scratched hands and arms, but I earned twenty-five cents there, too.
I stopped by Brother Raymond’s home and helped him weed his garden. It was about the hardest work I’d done all day. I had to get down on my hands and knees and pick the tiny weeds among the carrots and the radishes. It was worth it when Brother Raymond pulled two quarters out of his pocket and dropped them into my hand. I’d finally earned enough money to make things right with the Lord!
When I finally headed for home, I was too tired and sore to do more than drag my feet over the hot sidewalk. I was thirsty and had two big blisters on my hand.
I passed the park. All the guys had gone home long ago, but I didn’t care. I wasn’t thinking of baseball and the all-star game anymore.
I made my way to my room. The tithing can was waiting on the dresser, still empty. I poured my two dollars and thirty-five cents into the can, grabbed my new ball glove—the mitt that was honestly mine, now—and pounded my blistered fist into it with a satisfied smile.

Activity:· Make and decorate Tithing Cans.
· There is also an activity sheet, that is about tithing around the world.
· Show tithing slips and practice filling them out. Make sure your children see you filling them out. Since the best teaching tool is by example. Maybe show them some old receipts so they can see that you as parents contribute.

Closing Song: I Want to Give the Lord My Tenth (pg. 150, Children’s Songbook)

Closing Prayer:

Treat: Use the Popcorn as your treat tonight and they can eat it during the lesson if they are still listening.


Aims said...

I am so excited that I found this blog. I have been wanting to do something similar but it just hasn't worked out.

I also looked at your family website (I'm telling you so I don't feel like a stalker). You have a very cute family & it looks like you have lots of fun with you daughter. I know I do with mine.

Anyway, Thanks for the FHE stuff - I am going to put a link on my blog so I remember to return for ideas.

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Chasing Molly said...

Hi Tiffany! I LOVE the popcorn theme to this lesson. I really wanted to show my children in a very visual way the blessings that come with paying tithes and offerings. And your idea was just the ticket. Thank you for sharing your talent and inspiration with us! Sincerely, Bianca

Chasing Molly said...
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