Summer is almost here, which means our family will be spending some time away from home. I remember packing for vacation leading me to put together a Bible lesson on being prepared for the return of Jesus. This can be followed up with shorter, specific lessons on trust, faith, and studying the Truth. I’ve included the lesson below. Please feel free to use it if you find it helpful for your children’s ministry.
In the 1800’s, people made trips by wagon. They had to pack many supplies for the road. Here’s a list for a three month trip.
25 pounds of bacon per person
150 pounds of flour per person
25 pounds of sugar per person
15 pounds of coffee per person
Dried fruits and vegetables
Citric acid to add to water (prevents scurvy)
Salt and Pepper
Yeast for making bread
Two blankets, a comforter, a pillow, painted canvas cloth to spread on the ground under the bed, a camp kettle large enough for boiling meat and making soup, a coffee pot, tin cups, tin plates, frying and baking pans of wrought iron, large pan for mixing bread, forks and spoons, extra camp kettle, bucket for water, an axe, a hatchet, a spade, a mallet to drive in picket-pins, and matches.
2 blue or red flannel overshirts, open in front, with buttons
2 woolen undershirts
2 pairs thick cotton drawers
4 pairs woolen socks
2 pairs cotton socks
4 colored silk handkerchiefs
2 pairs stout shoes, for footmen
1 pair boots, for horsemen
1 pair shoes, for horsemen
1 gutta percha poncho
1 broad-brimmed hat of soft felt
1 comb and brush
1 pound Castile soap
3 pounds bar soap for washing clothes
1 belt-knife and small whetstone
Stout linen thread, large needles, a bit of beeswax, a few buttons, paper of pins, and a thimble,
all contained in a small buckskin or stout cloth bag
Coat and overcoat
Also medicine and a rifle and a revolver.
Now, you have to remember, there weren’t stores on every corner. Much of the land they traversed was unsettled, so it was important to pack everything they needed for the trip.
What would happen if they forgot something important? They would have to wait until they could find a town with a general store and hope the item was in stock. If it wasn’t, they would have to wait until they got to the next town or outpost.
The Bible talks a lot about being prepared. In Matthew 24:44, it tells us to always be ready, because the Son of Man is coming when we don’t expect it. Matthew 25:12 says something similar. In John 14:2, Jesus tells His disciples that He is going to prepare a place for them in His Father’s house. As this chapter of John continues, Jesus assures them that He is going to come again and receive them to Himself, meaning they will be with Him forever in heaven.
As the Bible indicates, we must always be prepared for the return of Jesus. How can we be prepared? By trusting Jesus Christ for our salvation. We can’t buy our salvation. We can’t perform a bunch of good deeds to gain our salvation. Jesus bought our salvation by dying on the cross and rising on the third day. We have to remain steadfast in our faith. It’s easy to believe in God when everything is going great. But when trouble hits, we can wonder why God lets bad things happen to us or why he left us when we needed Him the most. When we focus on Christ instead of our problems, we remember that He will one day come again and overcome even our worst problems. We must grow in understanding by praying and reading the Bible. God tells us to seek Him and His truth.
In 2 Timothy 1:7, it says that God didn’t give us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind. We must develop our spiritual power by Jesus living in us. We must grow in spiritual love—a genuine concern for everyone. We must grow in true wisdom to be effective servants of Christ. Then we can be prepared for His return.