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Day five

Miriam: the Fearless Prophet

This is the page for Day Five.  On this page you can find background for Miriam as well as an explanation of the key beatitude.  In addition, you can find the story/service, art, science, and games guides with demonstration videos as well as the music guide and whodunnit episodes.  Those guides are also available on the home page along with the overview.  

"Blessed are the peacemakers,

for they will be called children of God."

Matthew 5:9 

Click or tap on these icons to take you to the right guide.  You can also find the supply list here:









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A note to Families: activities during VBS at church may only take about 20 minutes but that's made possible by lots of prep work.  Preparing for and completing an art, science, or service project might take all day.  That's okay!  You have all summer to explore the mystery museum.  

Day Five

Miriam: the Fearless Prophet

Learning Objectives for the Kids:

  • Miriam really loved and looked out for her family.

  • This fearless loyalty and love extended to all of her people.

  • Miriam and her people were slaves in Egypt but God did not want slavery to continue so God directed the siblings Miriam, Aaron, and Moses to lead their people to freedom.

  • Even though Miriam started working for freedom when she was very young and continued her whole life alongside her brothers, the work was never completely finished. 

  • Jesus challenges us all to be peacemakers and to work so that everyone can have peace and be liberated.  This is a challenge so big that is has been going on for thousands of years and everyone everywhere is called to get to work.  But the good news is that Jesus has given us everything we need to make his dream a reality.  In this way we are all blessed more than can be measured!

Background on Miriam:                                 Exodus 2:1-10; Exodus 15

     When she was very young Miriam watched her baby brother float down the river in a basket.  But Miriam didn’t just watch.  She followed that basket from the edge of the Nile River all the way into the palace of Pharaoh—the very man who had sentenced that baby to death. 

     What sort of blind courage or love must it have taken for Miriam to do that?  As a toddler she was already fearless.  Miriam watched as Pharaoh’s daughter picked up her baby brother and when the woman asked for a nurse Miriam rushed to bring back her mother.  Thus Miriam ensured that Moses would be protected and well-raised. 

     Jewish tradition holds that Miriam was a prophet from a very early age but the Bible does not reveal Miriam’s role as a prophet until she helps her brother lead the Israelites across the Red Sea and to safety.  There she leads the people in a song of thanksgiving and praise for God’s deliverance.  We don’t know much more about Miriam. 

     In Numbers 12 she is punished with leprosy for questioning Moses’ special status with God.  Jewish tradition also holds that she miraculously provided the Israelites with wells of water as they wandered through the wilderness and until she died of old age.  Stories have also arisen up about her selfless support for Moses with their brother Aaron as Moses repeatedly confronted Pharaoh seeking the liberation of the Israelites.  All this combines to make Miriam a symbol.  She symbolizes devotion to family.  She symbolizes the unnamed heroes who struggle for God’s deliverance.  She symbolizes joyful praise to God.  The fearless toddler protecting her brother symbolizes the possibility for any child to grow into greatness with God. 

Key Beatitude:                         

"Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God." (Matthew 5:9 NRSV)

Peacemakers don’t make peace out of nothing.  Peace would not even need to be made if conflict and suffering did not exist.  Miriam is part of the incredible family that led the Israelites out of Egypt and through the wilderness into a promised land.  But even then the promised land had to be fought for.  And then Israel struggled to become a kingdom.  And then the kingdom strayed from God or was conquered, again and again.  Miriam and her siblings accomplished much but still left much to be accomplished.   The struggle to realize God’s promise that all people can and should live in peace and with justice stretches over millennium and continues to this day.  We are all children of God and all called to be peacemakers.  We are all called to lead and carry others to the promised land.  We are all called to continue building the kingdom that Jesus promises throughout the beatitudes. 

Special Prayers:  As you learn about Miriam, you’re invited to choose a prayer to repeat throughout the day.  The goal is to memorize the simple prayer so that it is there for you and your kids whenever you might need it in life, just like God.  You can choose between the more challenging prayer poem and the rhyming kid’s poem:

Miriam Kid’s Prayer:

I’m a peacemaker.  
I am God’s own.
I am called to fix what is broken
To make the pieces whole.  

Miriam Prayer Poem:

Make me fearless.  
Speak the words that stir my soul.  
Sing the melody that moves my innermost self.  
God, you say “dance with me” 
and my heart leaps into your arms.

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Mystery Museum Story and Service

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Click or tap the icon for a day five pdf of the story guide that you can view online or print.  The guide includes a daily guiding question, learning objectives, supplies list, an activity introducing kids to the Bible story, questions to go with the Bible character video, instructions for a service learning project to reinforce the story, as well as a final lesson reflection.    

This video features Miriam, 2018, by Silvia Dimitrova.

Learn more at

Service learning

Go deeper into the story by serving.

Right now, there are kids in your community who are stuck at home without even having any books to read.  Today you can go deeper into service learning with Miriam by helping to distribute books.

Little Free Libraries are spread all over the country and are a place where anyone can get a free book.  They are open 24/7 and are located outside so they're a safe option during the pandemic while many libraries remain closed.


Do you have books you haven’t read in a while?  Do you have some that you enjoy but are ready to pass on to someone else who would love it just as much?  Do you have some that you enjoy so much, you want to buy a new copy for someone else?  Let’s see how many books we can donate locally to help spread the love of reading!  Book donations can be placed directly in little free libraries.  Check the map for a location near you.  Some full-sized libraries might be collecting books soon too.  


Mystery Museum Art

Your Story book


Click or tap the icon for a complete pdf of the art guide that you can view online or print.  The guide will lead you through creating your own bound book. Please note, this is an advanced art project, building off of all the skills you've developed at the Mystery Museum.

Learning Objective: Being a child of God is like God writing an
awesome book about you. God is telling a big story with the whole world
and your story may seem little but it is an important part of God’s story.

Questions to ask the kids while you’re creating together:

  • If your life was a storybook, what would the title of the book be? For example, Sarah the Awesome Artist or Brandon the Best Tree-Climber.

  • Who are the characters in your story? For example, Mom, Dad, Sister, Brother, Best Friend, Cat, Dog, etc.

  • Is God part of your story too? Yes! God is part of everyone’s story.

Click or tap the video icon for a video demonstration of Your Story Book. Please note that the video shows two alternative methods for making the books than the one found in the guide.

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Mystery Museum Science

Powerful as paper


Click or tap the icon for a day five pdf of the science guide that you can view online or print. The guide will lead you through building paper pillars and impressive paper airplanes.

Learning Objective: Whether you’re Esther, Mary, Deborah, Tabitha,
Miriam, Moses, or you, you need someone behind you to back you up. That’s God. All of these heroes worked hard to bring God’s kingdom to earth but none of that work would have meant a thing without God. God’s son Jesus really did change everything. Jesus’ beatitudes teach us how to shape the world into God’s kingdom. We are peacekeepers like Miriam—shaped by the challenges of life and the gifts that God gives us we work together towards Jesus’ vision.

Questions to ask the kids while you’re exploring together:

  • How many pillars do you think it would take to hold up one book?

  • What’s the least amount it would take? Three

  • If you add up Miriam and her brothers, how many people do you get? Three

  • Did you trust that the paper would be able to hold up the books?

  • Miriam was a poor slave who never had the chance to even go to school. Do you think people thought of her as weak and flimsy like paper?

  • What was Miriam able to accomplish?

  • Besides making pillars, what are other amazing things that you can do

  • with paper?

Click or tap the video icon for a video demonstration of Powerful as Paper with Bow-tie the Science Guy. Please note that this video does not include the second experiment from the guide, Paper Planes, but does have an extra demo on honeycomb structures.  

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Mystery Museum Games

Topple Time


Click or tap the icon for a day five pdf of the games guide that you can view online or print.  The guide will lead you through toppling books like dominoes.

Learning Objective: How many books does it take to make a
difference? Giving a kid in need even just one book to read is like setting off a bunch of dominos. When we read and learn it opens up so many possibilities for us and the awesome story that God is telling through us. What Miriam did a thousand years ago also set off a series of dominos that are still changing the world.

Questions to ask the kids while you’re playing together:

  • Does it take any patience to work with the dominos or books?

  • Do you think Miriam had to have patience?

  • How does it feel to work hard on this and then to watch all the dominos fall down?

  • Are there other ways that hard work can pay off in the end?

  • What goal did Miriam work hard towards completing?

  • What does God want us to work hard towards completing?

Click or tap the video icon for a video demonstration of Topple Time.  

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Mystery Museum Music

Miriam Song: Journey


Click or tap for the

Mystery Museum theme song.

Miriam had to trust in God’s call for her to look after and raise her little brother and to later help lead the people out of Egypt and into an incredible journey. When the people faced the waters of the Red Sea, got created a path for them. When the people were lost in the wilderness, God lit the way.

Each day's song comes to you from the Saddleback Kids youtube page.  The song is presented with easy-to-learn motions.  Click or tap the video icon for the music video.

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Mystery Museum Whodunnits?


A whodunnit is a mystery story that you can solve with the characters as you read along. You can also easily adapt these stories into skits. Click or tap the icon for a complete pdf of the whodunnits that you can view online or print.

At the mystery museum, Shurkey Holmes is gathering everyone together to reveal the culprit in a surprising conclusion to The Case of the Vanishing Portraits.

Click or tap the play icon for a reading of this whodunnit episode from Pastor Katie.

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What's going on with that portrait?


The Mystery Museum learning guides as well as the whodunnits were all written by Deacon Dan. He also created all the graphics, edited the videos, and built this website. He has served in children, youth, and campus ministries and offers these free resources on his art and ministry site, 

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