An excellent wife, who can find?
For her worth is far above jewels.
“An empty shoe box, red, pink, and white paper, cute smiley stickers, scissors, glue, and a pencil. A sack of candy hearts, and pencils with hearts to pass out. And…2 boxes of cards.” Mary Rose named each thing as she took her valentine supplies out of the sack. She really liked Valentine’s Day because it is a time when so many are made to feel oh so special by the cards and sometimes sweet treats they receive.
The cards usually had something unique about them like the shape, an especially drawn picture, a fun or kind message saying “Be My Valentine” meaning they are special to someone.
She had to get busy though because all her valentines had to be signed and ready to take to school by Friday and her valentine box had to be decorated and her name written in plain sight so her class mates would know which box was hers, for everyone else would also have decorated boxes. She was excited thinking about the things they would find in their boxes from her. This year she would not only trade valentines with her class mates at school but also with those in her youth group from church! There was a special Saturday afternoon marked on the calendar for a Bible Sweetheart Scavenger Hunt and devotional time. This was the first year Mary Rose was old enough to go and said to herself, “This is going to be fun!” Getting out her lists she laid them and the cards out in front of her. She saw pretty cards, funny cards, and cards with kind, sweet words. And speaking of sweet, chocolate is one of Mary Rose’ favorite things to eat! She always gets chocolate from her Daddy on Valentine’s Day. “Yummy” she thought, I can’t wait!”
Her school Valentine’s Day party was finally here and after lunch they put their work away and everyone got their boxes and put them on top of their desks. What a sight! All kinds of decorated boxes! It was nice to be up from their desks walking around in the room visiting with each other and making their special deliveries to each box where an opening had been especially made for the cards to slide easily inside. By the end of the day each box had lots of valentines!
The next day would be an adventure with her church youth group for she wasn’t sure just what to expect, but she knew there would be valentines and a devotional so she would take her Bible. “Hmmm” said Mary Rose to herself. “I don’t think Valentine’s Day is in the Bible but we do find love and kindness and Valentine’s Day certainly is about that!”
(Ephesians 4:32; 1 Corinthians 13:4-8a; 2 Peter 1:5-11; Romans 2:4; Galatians 5:22-26.)
After her family ate lunch they got in the car and drove to the church’s building. When Mary Rose arrived she walked in the room used for such gatherings. It was decorated with red balloons, white tablecloths and paper hearts scattered around on top. She went over to a table with white sacks. She was so excited to see everyone there from her particular Bible class! Each of them picked up a white sack, wrote their name on, and added a few hearts and stickers to the outside for the card exchange. Soon it was time to pass out their valentine cards and some of the older kids were acting very silly.
It wasn’t long and they were being divided into 2 teams to play the Bible Sweetheart Scavenger Hunt! There were 2 tables and on each table were several half hearts with a name and scripture inside. Each team had a chaperone to go around with them to make sure they stayed on task during the search.
The object was to work together with your team to find the other half of the hearts following the clues and win by being the first team having all 10 Bible sweethearts matched up correctly and team members back to their table when their last heart is matched up!
The teams were split up pretty evenly between older and younger players. Mary Rose could hardly wait to get started.
She was on team #1.
She had never really given it much thought as to how many husbands and wives/sweethearts were actually named in the Bible though it seemed there were plenty for this game.
Her team actually knew some of the answers, but they still had to read the clues and scriptures because that was the rules.
One clue read:
Delilah was a woman who knew what she wanted, but she was not someone to trust. She begged and cried to get her way with her sweetheart and he who once was strong was now one of the weakest men around. Find his name on one of the handicap doors of the building. Read Judges 16:10 to find out the name of Delilah’s sweetheart, and off they went to find the other half of the heart with his name.
It was a close race but they worked fast and team #1 won!
They were so excited they were jumping up and down hugging each other.
After snacks they were called over to a circle of chairs. This was the devotional area. They began with singing. Mary Rose and her friends loved to sing and lifted their voices in praise. One of the young men led a prayer and then the Bible lesson was given by their new youth and family minister. He had them turn in their Bibles to Acts 18. There was a Bible couple picked from the scavenger hunt game that they were going to learn more about. These sweethearts were Aquila and Pricilla.
Some of the things they learned about them included:
- They were husband and wife. Acts 18:2
- Both of their names are mentioned together at least 5 times in the scripture.
Acts 18:18-19, 26; Romans 16:3; 1 Corinthians 16:19; 2 Timothy 4:19
- They were Christians. Romans 16:3
- They were tent makers and Paul had that in common with them. Acts 18:1-3
- They opened their home to Paul and he stayed with them. Acts 18:3
- They traveled with Paul. Acts 18:18-19
- They worked together as a good team and helped others know how to obey the gospel. Acts 18:24-26
- They loved God and others and showed that by what they did.
Another song and a prayer and their time together was over.
Mary Rose had lots of fun getting to know the youth group better and was happy she and her friends had been welcomed so nicely. And it was wonderful learning about Aquila and Pricilla. What a great team they made! Once at home she couldn’t wait to look at all her valentines! But before she began she noticed a beautiful pop-up Valentine’s card standing up on the table with a heart shaped box of chocolate candy next to it. It had her Mama’s name on it, from her husband, Mary Rose’s Daddy. He had written,
Heart of my heart you will always be.
For you are the Valentine especially for me!
“Sweethearts.” She thought. It was nice to think about how much her parents loved each other and showed that love by how good they were to one another. “They are also active in the church” she thought, “kind of like Aquila and Pricilla.”
Then she saw a smaller card and smaller box of chocolate candy on the other side of the table and these had her name on them. She opened the card and read:
“My Dear Mary Rose,
Hearts and flowers, and chocolate bites,
Having you for my Valentine
Is a true delight!
You are my Sweet Girl,
She felt happy inside knowing her Daddy loved her and that she was someone special to him.
Of course she knew that but it’s always nice to be told, and she took a bite of chocolate. “Yum”
To my Sister Bible class teachers,
Mary Rose not only enjoyed the “party” aspect of their time together but she thrived on the devotional as well. Holiday gatherings are a fun reason to get together but let’s remember it is always important to take advantage of that time and gear our youth toward Bible. They didn’t just have a game. They had a Bible game with Bible couples that went with the idea of the holiday. Then they focused on one of those couples. Let’s give them as much Bible as we can!
This month’s featured visual aid is the Bible Sweetheart Scavenger Hunt!
Find all you need here!
The bible sweethearts can be used in the classroom with teams, questions and answers if you don’t want to do the scavenger hunt. Read the clue about the sweetheart and if they know the match put the heart together but if they don’t know it look up the scripture then complete the heart. Have a wonderful rest of the month!
My prayers and encouragement go with you.
Serving in Christ,