• Children's Skit -Parable of the Pharisee and the tax collector

    Fun Short Sermon for kids - The Pharisee and the Tax Collector: Who went away justified? 

    Sunday School lesson: Luke 18:9-14  

    Short Children’s Sermon – Drama / Skit idea: This parable lends itself well for doing a very simple drama.
    Have two volunteers act out the part. Minimal preparation is needed. Have one individual knell down and pray, “God, have mercy on me a sinner.” Have the “Pharisee” brag on how wonderful and righteous he is. Ask the children to guess who went away right before God. Explain to the children the importance of confession and humility.
    Object lesson items needed: None. Have a very short pre service instruction for your two actors.
    Short Children’s skit / Drama
    Good morning Children! Our Bible reading this morning is from Luke 18:9-14. In the passage Jesus tells a story / parable to teach us the danger looking down on others and boasting about how good we are. This morning I have some helpers that are going to act out this story for us. (Invite your actors to come and stand up front.) Jesus told a story about two people going up to the temple (that’s like their church) to pray. The first person was a very religious man. Jesus said that when he prayed he really prayed about himself. (Gesture to the first actor to pray his boastful prayer outlining all his religious credits.) Then the tax collector (or the person who was known to be very bad) stood at a distance and did not even look up to heaven to pray. (Gesture to the “tax collector” to pray his short and humble prayer: “God have mercy on me a sinner.”) Now children, I have a question for you. Which of these two people pleased God? (Or perhaps, “went away closer to God.”) Well, I think most of you are correct. The religious person really wanted to make himself look good. The bad tax collector knew that he needed God’s love and forgiveness and really wanted to change.
    Children, we can’t fool God by trying to make ourselves look better than we are. It’s always best to be honest, say we are sorry to God, and ask for his forgiveness and help.
    Children’s Prayer: Dear God, we know that we always need your love and forgiveness. Thank you that we don’t need to pretend we are better than everyone else. In Jesus’ name – Amen
    Copyright 2010 Feel free to use this children’s talk but please give credit to and consider linking to this site. Thank you. A.H.

  • Childrens Sermon - Repentance

    Kids sermon on Repentance: Turning away from sin and turning to God

    Children’s sermon on Luke 3:7-18  Lectionary Advent 3

       Note: This story can be used as an introduction to a Sunday School lessonor a Sermon illustration for Children' Church

    Children’s sermon / object lesson on repentance: Show the children an empty glass representing our lives. Show the children a container of smarties or perhaps some delicious looking drink. This container represents the good things God has for us as his children. Pour the contents onto the glass that is turned upside down and watch it spill. Then turn the glass towards the container in order to be filled up. Repentance is about turning away from sin and turning to God. When we are turning to God we can receive all that he has for us.
    Object lesson items: a clear glass, a container of juice, smarties, or m & m’s, a catching tray to catch what spills over the upturned glass.
    Full Children’s Sermon: Good morning children. Our bible reading today is about John the Baptist.
    He prepared the way for Jesus by telling the people to repent. This morning I want to explain to you what repentance means. Repentance means a change of direction. It means turning away from what we know to be wrong and turning to God. I’ll show you what I mean. (Bring out the object lesson items.) Do you see this cup? We will pretend this is like our lives. Do you see this pitcher of cool aid? We’ll pretend this represents the good things God has for us. The glass might think, I’d really like some of that juice. So let’s pour out some of this refreshing cool aid. (Pour in onto the bottom of the up turned glass so that it all flows down the sides.) Hey. What’s wrong here? (Let the children respond) That’s right. All this refreshing juice that represents the good things of God just spilled out and none stayed in the glass. If we want to be filled with the good things of God we need to be turned to God. (Turn the glass right way up and pour in some juice.) There, that’s better. This glass that represents our life needs to be turned to God in order to catch all that he has for us. (Note: I repeat things to make sure they get the point.) Remember if we are turned away from God doing things we know are wrong we won’t be able to receive all that he has for us. Repentance means turning around (turn the cup around) and turning towards God– to welcome Him and his wonderful life.
    Children’s prayer: Dear God, when we are turned away from you help us to repent and turn towards you. That way we will welcome you in our lives and be open for receiving all that you have for us. In Jesus’ name. Amen!

    Copyright  Feel free to use this story on Sunday morning but please give credit to and consider linking to this site. Blessings, A.H.


  • Clean and Unclean

    Sunday school story: Clean and Unclean– Mark 7 (Religious traditions and God’s commandment. )

    Object lesson props: Cup, dirt, water, cloth for cleaning,
    Gospel Story: Good Morning Children. This Sunday’s bible reading is about being “clean and unclean.” Some very religious people came to Jesus and asked him why his disciples did not do the special ceremonial washings that they did. (You might want to clarify that this is not really about basic sanitation.) It’s good to wash you hands but these religious leaders cared so much about doing special, fancy hand washing that they forgot about making sure they were clean on the inside – clean in their hearts! We can be nice and clean on the outside but if we have anger, jealousy, bitterness and hatred in our lives then we are really pretty unclean on the inside. Do you see this nice cup that I brought in this morning? I want you all to look inside now and tell me what you see. (Make sure there is some dirt and mud in the bottom). Yuck. It’s pretty dirty and messy. Now I’m going to pour in some water. And I’m going to stir it around. Who would like a drink of this? No? I don’t blame you. It is certainly unclean on the inside. But what if I get this nice clean cloth and clean up the outside of this cup. (Carefully wipe up the outside of the cup). It’s pretty clean now. Do you want to drink some now? (Let them respond) Perhaps if I use this fancy wiping motion that I learned from my grandfather. (Demonstrate a ridiculously fancy cleaning procedure). Wow! That must have really helped. Do you want to drink what is inside the cup now? No! How about if I use this very fancy towel that is hand embroidered – it’s very beautiful. You still don’t want to drink what is inside? Well, you are right. No matter what special hand motion or fancy towels you use it is still pretty yucky water on the inside.
    TRANSITION: Kids – Our lives can be a little like this cup. If we have the dirt of bitterness, greed, anger and jealously on the inside of our lives, making ourselves look good on the outside doesn’t help much. We could do many things that would make us look very religious but if we didn’t change on the inside it wouldn’t be very pleasing to God who knows everything about us.
    Pray: Dear God. We know that you want us to be clean on the inside our lives.
    Help us to forgive others that have done wrong to us. Help us to get rid of bitterness and anger and selfishness that can make us unclean on the inside. Thank you for giving us the example of Jesus and thank you for sending your Holy Spirit to help us live the way you want us to live. Help us to walk in the love of Jesus Christ and share that love to others. We ask this in Jesus’ name. Amen!
    Copyright Andrew Hewlett 2009 and  

    Feel free to use this story on Sunday Morning but please give credit to and consider making a link to this page. A.H.  and please "like" this page!


  • Kids sermon - Lost Coin - Lost Sheep

    Children's sermon Lost Sheep, Lost Coin, Lost People     Luke 15: 1-10 

     Lost Sheep

    Kids Sermon idea: (for Sunday School or Children's Church)
    Hide a coin such as a silver dollar and have the children help look for it. If time permits do the same with a toy sheep. Give a big cheer when you find it. Emphasize that when something is lost you always go and look for it. Explain how Jesus was always looking for people who were far away and who had lost God.

    Object Lesson items: A silver dollar or other expensive looking coin. A small plush toy sheep.
    Full Children’s Story: Good Morning Children! How many of you have ever lost something? Wow – most of you. What do you do when you loose something? Right! When something is lost you always go and look for it. Many years ago people wondered why Jesus was always heading off to look for people who were far away and had lost God. To explain why he was always looking for lost people he told a story about a person who had lost a very expensive coin and how that person looked very hard to find it because it was so valuable. Now this morning I lost a coin around the front of the church here. Would you please help me find it? (Have the children search for the lost coin and give them some hints if necessary.) When someone finds the lost coin give a big cheer and celebrate. (If you have the time, do the same with the toy sheep.) Jesus was saying that lost people were very valuable and that it was important to look for them when they were far away from God and lost. A person who had lost a valuable coin would look for it and be very happy when they found it. A shepherd who had lost a sheep would look for it and rejoice when it was found. And Jesus would always look for people who were lost a far away from God. He also said that when the person was found and came back to God there was great cheering and rejoicing in heaven.
    Children’s Prayer: Dear God, thank you that Jesus was always looking for lost people. We need Jesus and lost people need him just as much. – In Jesus’ name – Amen!

    Copyright 2010  Andrew Hewlett   Feel free to use this story on Sunday Morning but please give credit to Sundaychildrensfocus and consider linking this web page to you church web site. Blessings, A.H.

  • Parable of the two sons - and the vineyard

    The parable of the two sons and the vineyard - Matthew 21:23-32 Self-righteousness, Obedience and the importance of recognizing our need for Jesus.

    Give the kids some background to the Parable:

    Start by introducing the parable of the 2 sons and its context (Matthew 21:23-32). Discuss the characters and the vineyard setting. Ask the kids why they think Jesus used parables to teach important lessons.

    Consider using use props, visual aids, or even act out the story with the help of the students. Make sure to emphasize the contrast between the two sons' actions.

    Discuss Obedience and Repentance:

    After telling the parable, lead a discussion about the behavior of the two sons. Here’s some ideas:

    Why did the first son initially refuse to obey but later changed his mind?

    Why did the second son agree to obey but didn't follow through?

    What do these actions teach us about repentance and obedience?

    Note: Highlight the idea that people who think they are righteous and have it all together don’t need God or his forgiveness. It is those who know they are broken and in need that reach out to Jesus for forgiveness and healing.

    Try Role-Playing:

    (for some of the more mature children) Divide the kids into small groups and assign each group one of the two sons. Ask them to create short skits or role-plays that illustrate the actions and attitudes of their assigned son. Encourage them to reflect on the importance of both initial intentions and follow-through.

    Application of the Parable:

    Discuss how this parable relates to our own lives at home, at church or at school. Talk about situations where we might say we will do something but don't follow through, and vice versa. Encourage students to think about how they can be more obedient and repentant in their daily lives.

    Bible Journaling and Art:

    Provide art supplies and encourage students to create journal entries or artwork that represents the parable's message. This creative exercise can help them internalize the lesson in a personal way.

    Challenge them to memorize key verses in this passage:

    Choose a key verse from this passage (e.g., Matthew 21:31b) and have the students memorize it. Discuss the verse's meaning and how it ties into the parable.

    Craft Activity:

    Create a simple craft activity where the children ccan make "repentance and obedience reminder cards" to take home. These cards can feature key verses or a brief summary of the parable.

    Guest Speaker or Testimony from someone in the congregation (use a teen or someone they look up to:

    Invite a guest speaker or share a personal testimony of someone who experienced a transformation through repentance and faith. This real-life example can emphasize the power of God's grace.

    Final Closing Prayer and Reflection:

    Conclude the lesson with a prayer, asking for God's guidance in living a life of true repentance and obedience. Encourage the kids to reflect on what they've learned and how they can apply it during the upcoming week.

  • Sermon for kids on Running the Race set before us

    Children’s Sermon: Run the Race set before us Hebrews 11 and 12

    “Let us set aside the weight of sin and run the race set before us”    Laughing

    Children’s sermon idea:  Have someone come in dressed up like a jogger / runner. However, they are also carrying a heavy back pack, a suitcase, a bag around the neck, etc. Have a fun interview with the runner and help them realize that they need to “set aside” the things that are weighing them down. Explain to the young people that carrying around sins (explain this a bit) will weigh us down in the Christian race.  (We want to live our lives God’s way but when we do sin, and do wrong things, we can repent, ask forgiveness and “set aside” our sins so we can run in freedom.)

    Objects / People needed:  Someone willing to dress up like a jogger. A backpack, suitcase and impractical items to carry around. (Have some fun with this: some old rotten thing, something representing past sins, etc)    Option: label the various items with signs: unforgiveness, selfishness, greed, etc.

    Full Children’s lesson:   Good morning children! Look who is coming up front here. It’s Mr. Johnston. What does it look like he is doing? That’s right, by looking at his running shoes and shorts it sure seems like he is going on a race. Let’s ask him. Mr. Johnston, what are you doing today? (Have some fun with this). But why are you carrying these heavy loads? Isn’t it hard carrying those heavy things and trying to run at the same time? Why don’t you just put them down and let them go? (You could prime your runner with various responses such as, “That’s just part of who I am” or “I’m used to carrying these around everywhere” etc.) Ask the children if this makes sense. What do they think he should do if he wants to do well in the race? Your volunteer runner could put down the weights and then exclaim how much better it feels.

    Debrief with the children: Wow, I’m sure glad Mr. Johnstone got rid of all that weight. Otherwise I think he would get tired and frustrated. I don’t even think he would be able to finish the race.

    The Bible says in Hebrews 12 verse 1 that if we are going do well in our Christian lives (win the race) we need to get rid of all those bad things that weigh us down. Whenever we sin (do what we know God doesn’t want us to do) then it’s like we are carrying a heavy weight that slows us down. So let’s try to do what God wants us to do so that we are not carrying around a heavy weight of sin. Of course, the good news is that when we ask forgiveness for the things we’ve done wrong, God forgives us takes away that heavy weight.

    Children’s Prayer: Dear God, help us to put off all those sinful things in life that just weigh us down and slow us down. Thank you that through Jesus we can be forgiven and we can walk (and run) right beside you every day of our lives. In Jesus’ name – Amen!

    Copyright 2016 Sundaychildrensfocus - Andrew Hewlett   Feel free to use this on Sunday. If you post it on the web please give credit to Sunday Childrens Focus and consider linking to this web site. Thank you!  - A.H.