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For this Christian object lesson, use anything from silver jewelry to a tarnished silver serving piece to teach how God is at work in our lives even when things are tough.
Sometimes tough times come into our lives, but God can use these to help make us more like Jesus. And He is always watching over us closely.
Malachi 3:3; Romans 8:28
Bring a silver serving piece or jewelry that's tarnished and silver polish.
Ask the students if they know how silver is made.
Explain that in the past there were silversmiths that made silver into usable items. First the silver had to be refined or made pure.
To do this the silversmith holds a piece of silver over the fire and lets it heat up. The silver must be held in the middle of the fire where the flames are the hottest to burn away all the impurities (dirt & other things that should not be there).
Malachi 3:3 describes God as a refiner of silver. It says, "He will sit as a refiner and purifier of silver."
Sometimes in life it may seem to us that God is holding us in a "hot spot." When a silversmith does this though, he never leaves. He sits in front of the fire and watches the silver very carefully. He knows that if the silver is left even a moment too long in the flames, it will be destroyed. God may allow things to come into our lives to help us become all we can be, but He will never leave us too long and let us be destroyed. He is with us and always carefully watching.
Romans 8:28 says "God causes all things to work together for good to those who love Him and are called according to His purpose." God can even use being in the middle of a fire for good in our lives.
So how does the silversmith know when the silver is purified? That's easy -- it's when he can see his image in it. God wants to see His image in us -- His Son, Jesus Christ.
Take the polish and clean the tray. Let students look at their reflection in the "clean, polished" tray.
Tell them when we feel like we're in a "hot spot," we can remember that God is using it to make us more like Jesus, and He will never leave us or abandon us. This Christian object lesson will demonstrate how He's making us into something far more precious than silver!
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