Other Summer Reading Challenge posts: Introduction,
Week Three: off
TIME TRAVEL DEVOTIONAL, Week #4: Jesus the Time-Breaker
But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ–by grace you have been saved–and raised us up with him and seated us together with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, so that in the coming ages he might show the immeasurable riches of his grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. –Ephesians 2:4-7
Bible Reading: Genesis 3, Isaiah 64:1, Luke 2:8-19
(Optional Further Reading: Genesis 28:10-17; Isaiah 6:1-6; Isaiah 7:14; Micah 5:2; John 10:1-10; Hebrews 1:1-3; 1 Peter 1:20-25)
Activity props: a piece of tissue paper, a flashlight, and a small rock
What if humans could time travel? What would that do to the world? What if even the tiniest little thing, like the flapping of a butterfly’s wing, could change the course of nature and of time?
The writers of many time travel books are interested in an idea called the “butterfly effect.” They believe that that tiny flap of a wing could affect something else, which affects the next thing, and on and on until finally it causes a tornado or a hurricane. If that is true, then time travel could have major, even destructive, consequences!
Last week we talked about how God is in charge of time and everything in it. Can the flapping of a butterfly’s wing change God’s plan? No! At the very beginning of time, just after God created time and space and the Earth itself, something very terrible entered time and tried to destroy everything that God had created. Was God’s purpose for the world destroyed then? It certainly looked like it at the time. But before Adam and Eve even left the Garden of Eden, God gave them a prophecy.
Activity: Hold up your tissue paper straight with two hands. Have someone shine a flashlight through it from the top. What comes through the paper?
Let’s think a little about what prophecy is. Prophecy is like a time capsule that God sends backwards into time. Since the Fall, messages about Jesus and even the spiritual presence of Jesus (called “theophanies”) broke into time to remind certain humans of God’s purpose to redeem the world.
Satan was still at work in the world to try to destroy God’s purpose for time. Isaiah, who himself saw some of the greatest time capsule messages of the Old Testament, prayed to God, “Oh that you would rend the heavens and come down….” Is there anything wrong in your life that makes you long to see God make it be right? What would it be like for God to tear open time and space and come down into it?
Activity: Now (carefully!!) have someone drop a rock through the tissue.
Think about the object that broke the tissue. That’s a small picture of what it would be like for God to “rend the heavens” and come down. And that did happen! Jesus is a Time-Breaker; he burst into time and space!
Back to the activity: Now hold your torn paper up high. What can you see?
Jesus came into time and space as a little baby in a manger. The shepherds saw angels burst into view for the shepherds on the night that Jesus was born! Those shepherds got to look straight into heaven! Jesus as Time-Breaker, through his life and death and resurrection, made the only door, the only way, into heaven. Now you can know God the Father, pray to him, and enter forever into His loving presence!
Thanks so much, Christie, for putting this devotional together for us. Looking forward to letting my kids give this a try…and talking about it as we read through some of our summer books on time travel!
Christie Hart is a mom, a reader, and author of a self-published book, MonoDude. She holds a master’s degree from Reformed Theological Seminary and serves as the Children’s Ministry Coordinator at Covenant Presbyterian Church.
Discussion Question: Do you or your kids have any questions for Christie about how the time travel books we’re reading relate to Christ and the Bible? If so, we’d love to hear them in the comments below!