Lesson Application: Only we can open our hearts to Jesus.
Supplies: a combination lock
Give the combination lock to a few kids to try and open the lock. Then have the kids shout out numbers for you to use. Make a big deal about trying to open the lock and play-up that the numbers they gave may be the right ones. Then say, of course the lock will not open because you don’t have the combination, only I have it. Then you do the correct combination and open the lock. Let the kids know this is like their heart. Jesus wants them to accept Him as their Savior but they have to open their heart and let him in. No one else can open their heart for them, not even the pastor, only they have the correct combination. Then lead the kids in prayer.
Lesson Application: This is a simple but effective illustration to show that even what we consider “little” sins, if left unchecked, grow and grow until eventually they cause destruction.
Supplies: a round balloon, a marker, and a balloon pump Take a round balloon, inflate it, and write the word “sin” on it with a marker. Deflate the balloon. Show the kids the balloon, and while you are explaining that “little sins grow bigger”, begin to demonstrate this by slowly inflating the balloon (and consequently the word “sin”). Inflate the balloon so much that it explodes! Remind the kids that ALL sin is very destructive.
Trash Can Heads
Lesson Application: Every day we put things in our minds. Things like music, conversations, scenery, things we read, things we see. What we put inside is what comes out when we are “kicked” by people, circumstances, problems, etc. Scripture: ” Thy word have I hid in my heart, that I might NOT sin against God.” Psalm 119:11
Supplies: an empty bucket any size, colored cards of different shapes, and markers
Have the children collect junk-trash from around area and put it in the bucket. Explain: We all have a bucket, it’s our brain, etc. We put things inside our brains everyday. Things like music, conversations, scenery, things we read, things we see. What we put inside our brains is what comes out when we are kicked (difficult things happen). Ask someone to come up and kick the bucket over. What comes out? Trash. Because that’s what was in the bucket. Ask question: How many of you want to be a kind, loving, forgiving, happy person? Write the things they say on different shaped colored cards. Pass them out to children. Set the bucket with trash in it on the floor. Have the kids refill the bucket with the cards (read them as they go in). Ask someone to come up and Kick that bucket! What comes out? (re-read the cards) Say “what we put in our brain comes out under pressure”. Now Read Psalms 119:11
Lesson Application: Hate makes people unhappy and sour at life but when love is added to their lives it makes life good again.
Supplies: 2 pitchers of lemonade (one with sugar and one without), 2 lemon slices
Show the kids the two pitchers of lemonade and some lemon slices. Tell the kids that this lemonade reminds you of love and hate. Ask a child to take put a lemon slice in his or her mouth. It’s very sour and bitter. Tell the kids that hate makes people unhappy and sour like a lemon. Hate is also like lemonade without sugar; simply no good. Having love is like adding sugar to the lemonade. Love is sweet and pleasant. God can give us that love if we ask for it. As Christians we need to be sweet and loving like lemonade and not sour and unloving like lemons.
Lesson Application: With one of these candles you can summarize how Satan tried to destroy all
hope for man to find salvation.
Supplies: You should be able to obtain some “trick” birthday cake candles – i.e. the ones that appear to be extinguished when they are blown, but after a few seconds flame up again.
Jesus came as the light of the world (lite candle), but Satan used wicked men to try and put out this light by crucifying Him (blow out). However on the third day He came alive again (flame rekindled). Jesus has now passed this light on to the church. Over the centuries Satan has continued trying to put out this light by persecuting the church. At times he seemed to have succeeded (blow out), but each time this light returned brighter than ever (rekindle).
Lesson Application: This is a great idea to illustrate how sin is destructive to people’s lives even if we try to hide it from others.
Supplies: a syringe with a needle, food coloring, and a piece of fruit (apple, orange, pear etc.)
Inject fruit with the food coloring. The coloring WILL seep out a little, but can be easily washed away. Be very careful and work slowly. When you get to the lesson, cut open the fruit and reveal what’s inside.
Explain how sin gets into our lives and though we may be able to hide it from others. We may even look good on the outside, inside we are all disgusting and poisoned. Sin will destroy us. God does not judge us by what we look like on the outside. He looks at the heart. He knows what we really are, and he is the only one who can clean up the mess. Wear protective clothing as it can be VERY messy!
Lesson Application: Once hurtful words are spoken they can never be taken back.
Supplies: large paper, scissors, and scotch tape
Using large pieces of paper, cut out large paper dolls. Pick two or three pairs of students. Give one doll to each pair of students. Have one hold the doll and say something mean and nasty to it, ripping a piece of the paper doll. Take turns doing this. Have each person do this about 3 times so your paper doll is in about 6 pieces. Then give each person a roll of scotch tape and tell them to piece their paper doll back together. The results are hilarious. Have each group show their doll and tell what they have learned. Then discuss how words once spoken can never be taken back. The tape signifies an apology but as you can see, it just isn’t the same. No matter how hard you try, you can’t put the paper doll back in perfect condition.
Lesson Application: God made each and every one us to be unique.
Scripture Application: Psalm 139:13 You made all the delicate, inner parts of my body and knit me together in my mother’s womb.
Supplies: sliced bologna
You will be playing a super funny game with a purpose. Remember cutting out “snowflakes” from folded paper in kindergarten? Well this challenge takes on that same idea only using a piece of bologna instead of paper and using only your teeth instead of scissors! Invite 4 “artists” to come up front. Each artist is given a piece of bologna. Each artist has 1 minute to create a snowflake design out of their piece of bologna. After the time limit is up, the crowd votes on the best “bologna snowflake”. Point out that just like no two snowflakes are alike, God made each of us different. And also like snowflakes we are all not only unique, but beautiful to God.
Lesson Application: We will stay on target in our journey through life – If we let the Bible and the Holy Spirit guide us.
Supplies: a round balloon, tape, a straw, approximately 20 feet of string
Blow up your balloon but do not tie it off. Choose a volunteer to be your” target”. Have him/her stand about 18 feet away. “This balloon represents a person trying to go through life on their own. Most people want to go the right way. Their intentions are good. Therefore I am starting off by pointing the balloon at the target, but let’s see what will happen when I let go!” It will almost certainly miss the target. Repeat a few times. You may be able to obtain “Rocket” balloons. These are long, and buzz as they travel through the air. Children love them, but they will still miss their targets! “What this balloon needs is a Guidance system – something to help it hit its target. I have one right here. Produce your string, thread one end through a drinking straw. Have a second volunteer stand just behind the target, holding the other end. Blow up your balloon and tape it under the straw. Let the balloon go, and watch it hit its target. “That balloon kept right on target, because it had something to guide it. In the same way, if we trust the Holy Spirit and The Word of God to guide us through life, we will reach our “target”.
Lesson Application: God has given us a plan (recipe) to follow in His Word for our lives. If we try to do our own thing (substitute our own ingredients or leave something out), our lives will turn out to be a mess.
Supplies: A cookie recipe, a batch of chocolate chip cookies, supplies to make a “batch of cookies”
Keep the cookies out of sight of the kids. Produce a cookie recipe that you followed to make the “good” cookies. Gather substitute “ingredients” (things that look similar to the actual ingredients, but are radically different, such as salt instead of flour, vinegar instead of water, coffee grounds instead of chocolate chips, etc.) With your ingredients, tell the kids that you have here a recipe that will make the perfect chocolate chip cookies. Start reading the ingredients, but saying that you were out of this and substituted another ingredient that you thought was similar. You might also leave out a key ingredient, saying you’re sure it won’t make a big difference in the cookie. Go through your substitute ingredients, mixing them together. By this time, if the kids have figured out the substitute ingredients, they’ll be saying “gross” and “yuck”. When you have mixed it all together, ask if anyone wants some of these cookies. Most of the kids will decline your offer. The writer of the original recipe knew how to make a good batch of chocolate chip cookies. By changing it, I messed it all up. In the same way, we must follow God’s recipe for our lives because He wrote the recipe and knows best how to make it good. When we start trying to change the recipe by substituting what WE think is good is when we mess it all up. “We are all on a journey through life, and God has given us two things to help us – His Word, the Bible and the Holy Spirit. If, however, we try and travel through life on our own – without calling on God to Guide us – we will make mistakes, and go off in directions that are not part of God’s plan for us.”