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THE ONE YEAR DEVOS FOR GIRLS
By Annette LaPlaca Erin Keeley Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.
Copyright © 2002
Children's Bible Hour
All right reserved.
Chapter One JANUARY 1
THE TREASURE BOX
Read Malachi 3:16-18 1
A special note from Grandma ... a ballet ticket stub ... a fitness award patch ... a birthstone ring ... a Garfield book. Grace was looking over the contents of her treasure box. Before going to bed, she often held and inspected the items and then returned them to her box. The memories they brought gave her good, warm feelings.
One evening, Grace repeated her treasure box ritual as usual. When she finally fell asleep, she dreamed of a huge treasure box. The beautiful box was bigger than the sky and sparkled more than diamonds. But she couldn't see what was in it.
The next morning, Grace told her mother about the dream. "Who would own such a big box?" Grace asked. "A king? Or the president?" She snapped her fingers. "God!" she exclaimed. "I think God is the only one who might possibly own a box as big as the one in my dream. But if God had a treasure box, what would he put in it? Rainbows, maybe? Or oceans? Mountains? Gold?" No answer seemed right to her.
Mom smiled. "Let's think about it today," she suggested. "Let's see if we can come up with an answer."
"Okay," Grace agreed. But her day was busy, and she soon forgot her questions. She didn't think about her dream again until that evening when she pulled out her treasure box.She went to find Mom. "Did you figure out what God would put in his treasure box?" Grace asked.
"Go look up Deuteronomy 7:6," Mom suggested (see today's memory verse). "Maybe that will help you decide."
Grace took her Bible and looked up the verse. She saw the answer to her question. People, she thought. God would put the people who love him in his treasure box! Grace smiled. She knew she was God's treasure. JLN
* * *
HOW ABOUT YOU?
Whether or not you have a special box for treasures, you probably do have things that are "treasures" to you. God has treasures, too. His children-those who have trusted Jesus as Savior-are his treasures. Are you included in that group? Knowing that you're a treasure to him should give you joy, comfort, and peace.
GOD'S PEOPLE ARE HIS TREASURE
MEMORIZE: "You are a holy people, who belong to the Lord your God. Of all the people on earth, the Lord your God has chosen you to be his own special treasure." Deuteronomy 7:6
TO TELL THE TRUTH (PART 1) Read Ephesians 4:15-16
Lori looked glum as she came in the door. "Problems, honey?" Grandma asked.
"Oh, I just get tired of Marie bossing me around!" Lori complained. "Sometimes I wish I'd never tried to make friends with her!"
"Well," Grandma said, "I remember you said you were going to be friendly to her because she was new in school and you knew God would want you to do that. She seemed very pleased to be here the day you asked her over after school."
Lori scowled. "Yeah, and that's when she decided to become 'Director of the Playground.' She's been bossing everybody ever since," Lori complained. "At first the girls tried to be nice and play her games, but they're really getting fed up with her. Most of them won't even play with her anymore."
"But you still play with her?" Grandma asked.
"I did." Lori sighed. "But when she complained today about the other girls playing silly games instead of her games, I said I kind of felt like joining them. She got mad and told me I wasn't much of a friend. I guess I wasn't very nice about it. I wanted to help her, but all I could think of was telling her how horrible she was, so I didn't say anything more."
"Hmmmm," Grandma murmured. "Well, the Bible does say to tell the truth."
"You mean I should go ahead and tell her she's mean and selfish?" Lori gasped.
Grandma smiled. "Not exactly," she said, "but go look up Ephesians 4:15."
Lori found the verse in her Bible. "But speaking the truth in love ..." she read slowly. "Oh, I see! We have to love the person we're telling the truth to." She paused, and Grandma nodded as Lori continued, "I can try to explain to Marie why she's losing all her friends. I can help her realize that everyone wants a turn at deciding what to do. But I have to show love when I do it ... not be grouchy like I was today."
"I think you have the idea. It still won't be easy, but I'll be praying for you," Grandma promised.
Lori silently asked the Lord to help her know the right thing to say. EC
* * *
HOW ABOUT YOU?
Do you know someone who needs to be told the truth? Can you tell it in a loving way? Read 1 Corinthians 13 again to see what love is all about. Also, pray about the problem. Then if you're sure the Lord wants you to point out a fault to some person, do it lovingly. Be careful that you don't do it in a critical spirit, but rather to be helpful.
TELL THE TRUTH IN LOVE
"We will hold to the truth in love, becoming more and more in every way like Christ." Ephesians 4:15
TO TELL THE TRUTH (PART 2)
Read Proverbs 1:1-5 3
Marie was sitting alone on the steps, watching the other girls, when Lori arrived at school. As Lori sat down next to her, Marie gave her a sideways glance. "Thought you were going to play that stupid game with the other girls. Well, go ahead," Marie growled. "I don't care if no one likes me. I don't like them, either! I can sit here alone."
Lori took a deep breath. "Why should you sit alone?" she asked. "The girls would be glad to have you join them."
"In that dumb game?" Marie snarled, feeling a little guilty for sounding so nasty. "I know one that's much more fun. But do the others want to listen? Oh, no!"
"You do know a lot of fun games," Lori agreed, "and you're fun to play with, too. I'm glad you came to our school. But don't you see? The girls sometimes like to choose their own games. They don't dislike you. They just dislike having you always telling them what to do. So come on-play this game with us now. We'll play yours again later."
Marie hesitated. "I don't know how to play that one," she said finally.
"That's totally fine! The girls can show you how to do something for a change. Come on," coaxed Lori as she stood up. "I'm going to go play."
Marie watched as Lori walked away. She tried to be mad at Lori for deserting her, but in her heart she knew Lori was right. Maybe she should join the others and learn to play their game-if they would still let her. She slowly approached the group. "Could you show me how to play that game?" she timidly asked Susan.
Susan smiled. "Sure, come on," she answered. She linked her arm through Marie's, and together they joined the game. Marie was surprised and sorry when the bell rang a short time later. "This game was really fun!" she announced with a grin. EC
* * *
HOW ABOUT YOU?
Has someone tried to tell you that you are bossy, selfish, lazy, or maybe stuck-up? Don't become angry when you receive criticism. Thank God for a friend who wants to help you. Think seriously about what is said. If it's true, ask God to help you change that area of your life.
MEMORIZE: "Let the wise listen and add to their learning." Proverbs 1:5, NIV
Read Matthew 25:35-40 4
The cold winter wind bit at Gabrielle's nose and ears as she and her aunt Ellen were shopping downtown. "Can we stop at the pet store and get some birdseed?" Gabrielle asked. Aunt Ellen agreed, and they headed for the store.
As they crossed an alley, Gabrielle saw a man sleeping there, huddled against a wall. He was wrapped in a shabby coat, wore no gloves, and had worn-out shoes on his feet. Gabrielle frowned and glanced back over her shoulder. "Why is he dressed like that? And why is he sleeping on the street on such a cold day?" she asked.
"I suppose he's a homeless person," Aunt Ellen replied.
"At school we talked about homeless people," Gabrielle said as they entered a warm store, "but I didn't think we had any in a small town like ours."
After Gabrielle bought a bag of birdseed, she and her aunt started back home. As they passed the alley, Gabrielle noticed that the man was gone. Aunt Ellen looked sad. "I hope he's okay," she said. Gabrielle nodded.
When the two got home, Gabrielle filled the backyard feeder with birdseed. Then she came inside and rubbed the cold from her tingling fingers. "I like to feed the birds," she said as she and her aunt watched birds swoop down to the feeder. "It's so cold, and it's hard for them to find food. They might die without me." She paused, then added, "But you know what? My Sunday school teacher read some verses that say God sees every sparrow that falls."
Her aunt nodded. "God cares about the birds, but he says people are of more value than many sparrows," she said. "We found a way to help the birds through the cold winter; we could also find a way to help the homeless. Let's think of something together, shall we?" DBK
* * *
HOW ABOUT YOU?
Have you ever thought about what it would be like to be homeless? Really cold? Really hungry? Perhaps there's an organization in your town that needs money, food, or clothes in order to help homeless people. Would you be willing to do without something you want in order to help? Think about it.
HELP THE HOMELESS
MEMORIZE: "You are more valuable to him than a whole flock of sparrows." Matthew 10:31
Read Joshua 24:14-16 5
"Want me to feed Josie today?" Tanya asked her mother.
"Sure. Thanks," Mom replied. "Here's her spoon and the jar of peas."
"Open wide," Tanya said, putting a spoonful of the mashed peas into Josie's mouth. Josie spit the green peas back out. "Hey! You're supposed to eat them!" Tanya scolded, scraping the peas off the baby's chin. When Tanya held up another spoonful, Josie clamped her lips shut and turned away.
Mom chuckled. "I guess she doesn't want them. You can keep offering them to her, but you can't make her eat them. Here, try some carrots instead," Mom suggested, handing Tanya the jar of baby food.
"Come on, Josie," Tanya coaxed, offering the carrots. "Try some of these." This time Josie opened her mouth and accepted a spoonful. After that she willingly took some more and ate hungrily. "See. They're good," Tanya said. "And they're good for you, too, aren't they, Mom?"
Mom smiled. "Babies don't realize that we know what's good for them, and they don't always want to accept what we offer."
Tanya turned to her mom. "At youth group, Mr. Simmons said we're something like that. He said God loves us and knows what's best for us, and he wants us to accept Jesus as Savior and to serve him. But God lets us choose whether or not we want to."
Mom nodded. "Just like Josie decided whether or not to accept the food you offered her, we decide whether or not to accept Jesus and receive the salvation God offers us. And after we do accept him, we have to decide whether to do things his way."
Tanya smiled and finished feeding her little sister. GJT
* * *
HOW ABOUT YOU?
Have you asked Jesus to be your Savior? Have you decided to do things his way? God loves you and knows it's best for you to not only have Jesus in your life, but also to spend your life serving him by showing his love to others. Why not "open wide" and do that today?
DECIDE TO LOVE AND SERVE JESUS
MEMORIZE: "Choose today whom you will serve." Joshua 24:15
Read John 14:15-21 6
As Sheryl lay across the bed sobbing, she felt something silky shoved under her nose. "Sissy, you can have my blanket." A tiny hand patted Sheryl's head, and she looked up into the troubled eyes of her little sister, Cynthia, who added, "My blanket will make you feel all better."
Sheryl felt the bed move as her mother sat down beside her. "Missing Lindy?" Mom gently asked.
Sheryl looked up and nodded. "She was my best friend. I think about her all the time," she said. "Will I ever feel better? It's been three months since she died."
Mom handed her a tissue. "It's always hard to lose someone we love," she said, "especially someone as young as Lindy."
Sheryl took the tissue and blew her nose. Then she handed the blanket to Cynthia. "You can have your blanket back. Thanks."
With a contented sigh, Cynthia hugged her blanket to her. Mom pulled the little girl onto her lap. "That's your comforter, isn't it, honey?" she asked.
Cynthia looked puzzled. "No," she said. "It's my blanket."
Sheryl smiled and lifted the edge of the comforter that was spread across her bed. "See this, Cynthia?" she asked. "This is called a comforter."
Mom looked thoughtful as she spoke. "You know, Sheryl, the Holy Spirit is my Comforter-and yours, too."
Sheryl sat up. "Is that why I feel better after I pray?" she asked. "I know when I prayed this morning, God seemed to tell me to remember the good times. I did for a little bit, and then I felt better. I was still sad, but it was a ... a warm and soft sadness."
"Warm and soft? Like my blanket?" Cynthia asked.
Mom smiled, then patted the bed. "For Christians, the Holy Spirit is our Comforter. He's always with us and reminds us of God's promises and care." BJW
* * *
HOW ABOUT YOU?
Do you feel sad because someone you love has died? Have you lost a pet? Or has a special friend moved away? If you know Jesus as Savior, you have the Holy Spirit. Ask him to help you feel his comfort.
THE HOLY SPIRIT GIVES COMFORT
MEMORIZE: "I will not leave you comfortless: I will come to you." John 14:18, KJV
A PRETTY PICTURE
Read Acts 9:36-39 7
"See my picture!" Little Emily proudly showed Donicka her page of scribbled lines. Red, blue, green, and yellow streaks crisscrossed the picture of balloons.
"Mom likes my coloring much better than yours," Donicka replied in a snooty tone. "You don't stay in the lines."
Emily's lips puckered, and big teardrops crept down her cheeks. "Mommy!" she wailed and ran to find her mother.
Donicka took an orange crayon from the box and began coloring a stained glass window in a picture of a church. "That looks too messy," she mumbled to herself after coloring for a while. She ripped the page out of the coloring book, crumpled it up, and dropped it on the floor. I think I'll try this picture of a kitten, she thought. She chose a yellow crayon to begin working on the calico cat. But after a few minutes, she looked at the picture critically. This looks messy, too, she decided. Again she ripped out the page and tossed it away.
Just then Mom walked into the room, holding Emily's hand. The little girl was still sniffling. "Donicka," Mom said, "do you think your words to Emily were very kind?"
"I guess not," Donicka mumbled.
Mom picked up some of the pages Donicka had tossed on the floor. "You know, Donicka, the outlines of the pictures in your coloring book are boundaries, and as you told Emily, a picture is prettier when you stay inside the lines. The boundaries of the pictures remind me that there are boundaries in life, too-God's boundaries, or rules. When we obey his rules-like 'Be kind to one another'-our lives are like a pretty picture. But when we go outside the boundaries, we don't look very pretty to others or to God." LJR
* * *
HOW ABOUT YOU?
How does your "life-picture" look? Today's Scripture tells about Dorcas, whose life was like a pretty picture. She was kind, she helped others, and she made clothes for the poor. People were sad when she died. Don't go outside God's boundaries by being unkind. If you love Jesus, your life should be a pretty picture so others can see what he is like. Let the beauty of Jesus' love be seen in you.
FOLLOW GOD'S RULES
MEMORIZE: "Show mercy and kindness to one another." Zechariah 7:9
<%TOC%> Contents JANUARY 1. The Treasure Box 2. To Tell the Truth (Part 1) 3. To Tell the Truth (Part 2) 4. The Feeder 5. Open Wide 6. The Comforter 7. A Pretty Picture 8. Wrinkles 9. Camouflage Not Allowed 10. The Best Computer 11. Sniff 12. The Telltale Prints 13. The Nursery Lesson 14. Clocks and People 15. Sue Ellen's Choice 16. Unexpected Visit 17. Hannah's Prayer 18. The Best Banana 19. Not a Snitch 20. Adopted by God 21. Tips from Tippy 22. The Right Path 23. Ashley and Oliver 24. The New Desk 25. God Says It 26. Try Again 27. True Beauty 28. Going with the Flow 29. Don't Run Away 30. Those Dirty Socks 31. It's Greek to Me FEBRUARY 1. True Power 2. Telling It Like It Is 3. Bearing Fruit 4. Linnea Looks Back 5. Choosing Obedience 6. Second Chance 7. Mistaken 8. Whose Fault Is It? 9. Sharon's Decision 10. The Math Test 11. The Heart Box (Part 1) 12. The Heart Box (Part 2) 13. Melissa's Valentines 14. Valentines 15. Me First 16. Almost Isn't Enough 17. Family Photos 18. The Onion 19. Love in Action 20. Snowcones and Eggs 21. Questions 22. Serena's Shoes 23. No Results 24. Something Beautiful 25. Disappointment (Part 1) 26. Disappointment (Part 2) 27. Come 28. It Hurts MARCH 1. Family Members 2. The Picture Puzzle 3. Like Desert Plants (Part 1) 4. Like Desert Plants (Part 2) 5. Not Just a Game 6. Getting Clean 7. Brianna's Baby Book 8. Slug Bug 9. Casts and Crutches 10. Passing Grade 11. I Should Have Listened 12. God's Way, My Way (Part 1) 13. God's Way, My Way (Part 2) 14. Locked Out 15. Seed Sowing 16. Stubborn Love 17. Happily Ever After 18. Missing 19. Never Too Busy 20. A Light to Share 21. A Lesson in Names (Part 1) 22. A Lesson in Names (Part 2) 23. For Your Own Good (Part 1) 24. For Your Own Good (Part 2) 25. Back to Bethel 26. Not Just on Sunday 27. A Mistreated Child 28. Two Masters 29. The Right Kind of Words 30. The Crispy Pops Winner 31. The Beautiful Picture APRIL 1. April Fool! 2. The Mystery Seeds 3. The Human Race 4. Undeserved Reward 5. The Rainy Day 6. The Son Still Shines 7. Always There 8. Forgive Me My Sins 9. No Time Left 10. A Bored Friend 11. Why Can't I? (Part 1) 12. Why Can't I? (Part 2) 13. Careless Kate 14. No Excuse 15. The Old Tin Can 16. What's Inside 17. Creation and the Truth 18. Why Am I Guilty? 19. Dead, but Alive 20. Jesus, My Friend 21. Someone to Trust 22. It Won't Show 23. Too Much Work 24. Look Out! 25. I Know I Can 26. Devotions As Usual 27. New Glasses 28. Lesson from Mickey (Part 1) 29. Lesson from Mickey (Part 2) 30. The Problem Tongue MAY 1. Without a Script 2. That One's Mine 3. Crystal Clear 4. Paid in Full 5. Stolen Words 6. Ponies and Canopy Beds 7. Softballs and Speaking Truthfully 8. The Buried Treasure 9. What's Good about It? 10. Courtesy Pays 11. Discordant Notes 12. A Sneaky Trap 13. The Glassblower 14. Treat or Treasure? 15. Rewards 16. Ready on Time 17. On Becoming Fossils 18. Every Step Counts 19. The Happy Home 20. The Lost Notebook 21. Up the Down Escalator 22. Bonnie the Bookworm 23. Bringing Firstfruits 24. Why? (Part 1) 25. Why? (Part 2) 26. Remember Me 27. Wishing, Praying, Working 28. Whose Rules? 29. Mandy's Future 30. The Replacement 31. A Special Memorial Day JUNE 1. Heaven 2. Julie's Light 3. Priority Baggage 4. Never Too Young 5. Family Day 6. Wake Up 7. Sink or Swim 8. The Gift 9. Part of the Family 10. A Little or a Lot 11. The Prize Cake 12. Sara's Move 13. Cotton Clean-Up 14. Welcome 15. Helpers Needed 16. Bury That Seed 17. Garage Sale 18. June Bride 19. More Than Words 20. What Is God Like? 21. The Broken Train 22. The Boss 23. Arrowheads and Promises 24. The Wallet (Part 1) 25. The Wallet (Part 2) 26. Lauren's Visitor 27. With You Always (Part 1) 28. With You Always (Part 2) 29. Mimosa Plants and Words 30. A Friend Like Me JULY 1. A Reward 2. Ocean of Love 3. Dum Dum Douty 4. The Law of Freedom 5. Decision Made 6. Sin Now, Pay Later 7. A Prize Rose 8. Honoring Parents 9. Her Own Way 10. Warning Sign 11. Easy-but Wrong 12. Contented Heart 13. Gone for Good 14. The Ant Trap 15. The Way You Sound 16. The Bug Spray 17. Light for Life's Path 18. Danger! Stay Away! 19. The Quiet Times 20. Follow the Rules 21. Fuel on the Fire 22. The Mime 23. Fence of Protection 24. Who Is Guilty? 25. Kristi's Foolish Pride 26. The Unseen Wind 27. A True Investment 28. Spiritual Health 29. Like a Badger (Part 1) 30. Like a Badger (Part 2) 31. In the Way AUGUST 1. Salted Leeches 2. Grounded in Love 3. Really Forgiven 4. Dustpan Needed 5. Not Born Beautiful? 6. The Brighter Side 7. The Missionary Project (Part 1) 8. The Missionary Project (Part 2) 9. Without Love 10. The Wise Squirrel 11. Dead Man's Reef 12. Big Enough 13. Hidden Sweetness 14. The Fireflies 15. Pulling Weeds 16. Do It Now 17. A Cookbook and an Egg 18. Worm or Butterfly 19. Straight Paths 20. Little Lost Lamb 21. Warning! Window Here! 22. Troublesome Melon (Part 1) 23. Troublesome Melon (Part 2) 24. Gazelles and Thoughts 25. Call-Waiting 26. Flower Pot Lesson (Part 1) 27. Flower Pot Lesson (Part 2) 28. No More Snarls 29. Try, Try Again 30. A Broken Plate 31. Room to Grow SEPTEMBER 1. Clumsy Clara 2. A Mighty Weapon 3. Under Construction 4. The Promise in a Seed 5. Special Gift (Part 1) 6. Special Gift (Part 2) 7. Special Gift (Part 3) 8. The New Student 9. A Habit of My Own 10. Always Watching 11. The Default Setting 12. The Rope 13. Spread Too Thin 14. Bad Apples 15. To Speak or Not to Speak 16. Lost Inheritance (Part 1) 17. Lost Inheritance (Part 2) 18. On Track 19. The Right Answer 20. Dayna's Mean Mom 21. No Fixed Stain 22. The Oil and the Wick 23. Pickled Beets 24. Beautiful Feet 25. Out of Balance 26. Jump and Trust 27. Correct Address 28. Refresher Course 29. People and Cookies 30. Smiles OCTOBER 1. What Do You See? 2. Who's George Conway? 3. The Winner 4. First Things First 5. The Turnabout (Part 1) 6. The Turnabout (Part 2) 7. A Protecting Shield 8. Angela's Anger 9. A Bright Greeting 10. Checks and Promises 11. The Bat (Part 1) 12. The Bat (Part 2) 13. Minced Words 14. Squabbles 15. Give Me 16. The Slumber Party 17. Accidents Do Happen 18. One of the Flock 19. Shoes and Salvation 20. Remembered No More 21. Spider Web 22. The Election 23. Disposable Friends 24. Not a Kid Anymore 25. Sally's Solution 26. Interesting Genealogy 27. The Toaster and the Bible 28. The Things I Remember 29. The Way to Grow 30. Stop Signs and Christians 31. Really Saved NOVEMBER 1. Change Needed 2. Important Rules 3. The Magnet 4. A Matter of Honor 5. A Walrus Family (Part 1) 6. A Walrus Family (Part 2) 7. Face the Music (Part 1) 8. Face the Music (Part 2) 9. Written Down 10. The Missionary Party 11. The Neatest Job 12. A Feast of the Heart 13. The Whining Sister 14. The Right Size (Part 1) 15. The Right Size (Part 2) 16. Braces for Marcy 17. A Measure of Faith 18. Spilled Milk 19. Show Me the Way 20. Ready for the Future 21. Persistence Pays 22. Spiritual Snobs 23. The Persecuted 24. Her Sister's Shadow 25. Something Better 26. Right Side Up 27. Paid in Advance 28. Tidal Wave 29. Big Sister 30. Puzzles and Lives DECEMBER 1. Fit for Heaven 2. Speak Up 3. The Shared Birthday 4. Needed: The Key 5. Pretty Presents 6. Horn Honkers 7. To Fight or Do Right 8. Check It Out 9. The Gang (Part 1) 10. The Gang (Part 2) 11. The Hypocrite 12. The Prescription 13. Different, but Alike 14. Good Food 15. A Delightful Fragrance 16. Canning the Word 17. A Worthy Gift 18. Cold Hot Chocolate 19. No Room 20. White Christmas 21. A Shared Gift 22. Worth the Wait 23. Security 24. Choice of a Lifetime 25. Home at Last 26. Snowball 27. Focus Trouble 28. Not Impossible 29. Hidden Inside 30. Not Greek to God 31. Show It INDEX OF TOPICS INDEX OF SCRIPTURE READINGS INDEX OF MEMORY VERSES
Excerpted from THE ONE YEAR DEVOS FOR GIRLS by Annette LaPlaca Erin Keeley Copyright © 2002 by Children's Bible Hour. Excerpted by permission.
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