discipleship

  • Kingdom is like a Mustard Seed Children's sermon

    Children's Sermon / Object lesson    Mark 4: 26-34 The Kingdom of God and the mustard seed

    A tiny mustard seed is held between the index finger and the thumb. A perfect illustration of Jesus' teaching in the Bible.       Faith of Mustard Seed

    This parable emphasizes the small, humble beginnings of the Kingdom. (Not what many people expected)

    Basic Children’s sermon idea: Hold up a small seed and then show the sort of large bush that it can grow into. Explain that this is how the Kingdom of God and /or the Church of God grows. It starts with small beginnings.

    Props needed: A small seed and a large bush in a pot.

    Children’s sermon / object lesson: Good morning children! Can you see what I have in my hand? It’s very hard to see. Look closely and you will see a very small seed. It doesn’t look very important. It doesn’t look very powerful. It looks like it would never get any bigger.

    However, if left a seed like this in the ground, and watered it, and left it grow, it would slowly grow into a large bush like this one over here. That is amazing that such a large bush could come from such a small seed.

    Jesus said that this is how his Kingdom would grow. Some people expected that it would start with an amazing show of power. But Jesus said it would start very small way – like this little seed. Jesus started telling people about God and his wonderful love. Later his followers told others of how Jesus loved us so much that he was willing to die for us. It did not seem like a powerful beginning. However, just like a little seed in the ground his kingdom grew bigger and bigger. At first there were just a few believers in Jesus. Now, many years later his kingdom family stretches all around the world. There are followers of Jesus in every country of the world.

    Kid’s prayer: Dear God, thank you for the good news message of Jesus and his love. Thank you that even though this good news message started with just a few people that it now has grown to be a huge church family all around the world. In Jesus name – Amen!

    Copyright Sundaychildrensfocus 2021 Feel free you use this on Sunday morning but please “Like” this on the Home Page link. Thank you. A.H.

  • Being great - being a servant

     

    Greatness - Being the Servant of all     

     

    Children’s Sermon idea: Invite the children to sit up front in the chairs used by the pastors, deacons or priests. Ask them if this makes them feel important, great, etc. Explain how James and John were concerned about sitting in the most important places and how Jesus told them that true greatness was about being a servant.
     
    Objects: Some chairs that are strategically located in a place of honour. Check this out with the pastor first!
     
    Full Children’s Sermon / object lesson:
    Good morning children. Our bible reading this morning is about the disciples James and John and how they were very concerned about sitting in the most important places. Where do you think are the most important places to sit in this church? Those ones there? O.K. Come up here and let’s see how they feel. (Let some of the children sit in the “important” chairs. Ask them how it feels. Does it make them feel important? Does it make them feel like they have lots of power? Compare chairs to see what one feels like it is the most important place.) These are nice chairs up front here. Our pastors pray and teach from up here and it is nice that they have comfortable chairs to sit in. They are not trying to be more important than others. However, James and John became very concerned about being in the most important places. So Jesus taught them about true greatness as a disciple. Jesus said that they shouldn’t worry about trying to be in the most important place. He said the real way to become great was by being the servant of all. In Gods eyes, being great is not about showing how important you are, it’s about being a servant. A servant doesn’t worry about looking important. A servant cares more about helping others in need even if it is never noticed. (You could discuss ways of being a servant, at school, at home, etc.) Of course Jesus was the greatest servant of all. He was even willing to give his life for us.
     
    Children’s Prayer: Thank you Lord for all the nice chairs we have in this church. Whether we sit in the back, up front, or over on the side, help us to care most about being a servant in our day to day lives. At school, at home, or at play help us to serve and help others following the example of Jesus. In his name we pray – Amen!
     
    Copyright Andrew Hewlett sundaychildrensfocus.com   Feel free to use this story on Sunday morning but please give credit to sundaychildrensfocus and consider linking to this web site. Blessings, A.H.
  • Building others up

    Build one another up

     

    Kids talk / Sunday school lesson on using words to build up and not tear down.  

     ministry prayer

    Lectionary reading from Ephesians 4:25-5:2 (Instead of the Gospel of John) -- Trinity 9

     
    Kids talk idea: Show how words can build people up or tear them down. Have someone stand in front of the children who can physically respond to words of discouragement or words of encouragement.
     
    Full Children’s talk: Good morning children! Did you know that the words that we say to people are very powerful? In the Apostle Paul’s letter to the Ephesian Christians he told them that we need to make sure we use our words for building people up and not for tearing them down. I’ll show you how that works. Betty is going to help us see just how our words can build up or tear down. (Prior to your talk make sure your volunteer cringes, wilts, and gets smaller every time something nasty is said. Make sure they know to stand up tall when they are encouraged). Children, watch how my words will affect Betty.
    Hello Betty it’s good to see you! (Betty will intuitively stand up tall).
     I really wanted to get Carol to help me but she is away so I guess you’ll do. (Betty will wilt a bit a bit).
    By the way. Why are you wearing blue today? Everybody else is wearing yellow (Betty crumples a bit more).
    Another thing Betty; you look a little bent over. Maybe you need to get some more exercise. (You get the idea. Betty should be almost knelling sadly on the floor)
     
    Look what has happened Children. I don’t think I was very kind to Betty. My words did not build her up. In fact, my words discouraged her and tore her down. How do you think we can build her up? Say some thing to her that might encourage her and build her up. (Let the children make encouraging comments and watch Betty slowly get built back up until she is standing nice and tall) That was wonderful children. You were very good at using your words to build her up. Let’s have the congregation give you a cheer for being so good at building her up. Also, thank you Betty for helping out.
     
    Betty did exaggerate a little to help with my story but all of us know how important it is to be built up and encouraged by others.
     
    Pray: God, thank you that our words have a wonderful power. Through your Holy Spirit help us to always use our words to encourage, and build others up. We ask this in the name of your Son, Jesus Christ. Amen!
     
    Copyright 2009 Andrew Hewlett Sundaychildrensfocus.com Feel free to use this story on Sunday morning but please give credit to Sundaychildrensfocus.com and consider making a link to this page. Thank you. A.H.
     
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  • Children's fun lesson on coming to the light of Jesus Christ

    Children's lesson - Come to the Light of Jesus Christ

    John 3: 21 “Whoever lives by the truth comes into the light…” Lent 4 

    Overview of the spontaneous drama: Ask the children if they have ever played “Hide and Seek”. Have the young children pretend to hide from God in a dark hidden place close by. (Do this up at the front of the Church or in your home. You could dim the lights to add to the effect.) Hold up a candle or other light and explain how this reminds us of Jesus who is the light of the world. Ask them to come out of hiding and walk towards the light (as you hold up the lit candle for all to see). Explain that the life and love of Jesus is like a light shining out into the world and that we need to come to that wonderful light.

    Full drama: Good morning children! Have you ever played a game called “hide and seek”? It really is a fun game where you do your best to hide from the leader. However, you might not know that some people actually try to hide from God! They might not be living the way that God wants so they think it’s best to try to hide from God. Do you think a person can hide from God? No. You are right. It’s impossible to hide from God. Now, just for fun, I want you to pretend to hide from God just up front here in our church. I’ll count to 10 to give you time to hide – just close by in this area. (If possible dim the lights a bit to make the light stand out.) Ok, I hope you can still hear me as you are pretending to hide from God. Now in a few seconds I am going to light a candle. This candle reminds us of Jesus Christ who is the light of the world. This light reminds us of his life and love that is shining out into a dark world. Now I am going to hold up the candle. I want you now to peek out from where you are hiding and look at the light. When you see that light I want you to now come out and walk to this light. That’s right, come out from your hiding place and come to the light. (When the children are all together close to you and the candle ask the congregation to give a cheer!)

    You did that very well children. (Ask them to be seated.) That little drama reminds us that we shouldn’t try to hide from God. We should come out from hiding and come to the light of Jesus Christ. His life and love is like a warm and bright light shining out into the world. We want to come close to the wonderful light and not try to hide from him. We can come close to the light of Jesus Christ by living the way he wants us to live. We can come close to Jesus by telling him (in prayer) that we want to follow him and know him more.

    Prayer: Dear God, thank you that Jesus is like a wonderful light shining out into the world. When we are tempted to hide from you, help us to remember your life and love is shining out to us like a guiding light. And help us to come near to you so we can know you better each day. In Jesus’ name – Amen!

    (Later at home you might want to discuss ways that we hide from God. You might also want to discuss ways that we can draw near to Jesus and welcome him in our lives and hearts.)

    Copyright 2018 Sundaychildrensfocus  Andrew Hewlett - Feel free to use this on Sunday morning but please give me credit and click on the facebook "Like" on the life side of the page.  Thank you! A.H.

     

  • Children's object lesson -Watch what you say


     

    Children’s Sermon: The power of words.

     (this object lesson has been floating around in Christian circles for many years)
    Object Lesson Idea:
    What we say can hurt others and hurt ourselves. This is a well known toothpaste tube object lesson about being careful about what we say to others. Once we say something we can’t take those words back. It’s like trying to get toothpaste back in the tube after it has been squeezed out.
     
    Objects needed: Toothpaste tube(and a toothbrush)
     
    Full Children’s Object Lesson:
    Good Morning Children. What are some of the things you do when you get up in the morning? After having breakfast what do you do to make sure your teeth are nice and clean? That’s right, you brush your teeth! I brought my toothpaste and toothbrush along this morning because it can help explain something that Jesus taught. Two of the bible readings that we have today (James ch.1 & Mark ch7) talk about being careful what we say to others. Without thinking we can say things to another person that really hurts them. After saying something hurtful or mean we might realize what we have done and we would like to take those words back – but it’s too late. Once we have said something to another person we can’t take those words back. It is like this toothpaste tube. Sometimes I squeeze far too much toothpaste out of the tube (demonstrate). You can try to put it back in (demonstrate) but it just doesn’t work. It just makes a mess. Once the toothpaste is out of the tube it is too late to put it back in. Saying an unkind word to another person is pretty easy to do. It is as easy as squeezing this toothpaste out of a tube. We would like to take those words back but we can’t get them back. (You could get the children to say something and then to try to grab those words in the air and put them back in their mouths. It doesn’t work.) Perhaps you have had someone say unkind words to you and you know how that feels. Always make sure your words won’t hurt another person because once you have spoken those words it’s too late to take them back. Tomorrow morning when you squeeze the toothpaste out of the tube remember this lesson and do your best to speak kind words to whoever you talk to during the day. 
     
    Children's Prayer: Dear God, we know that our words can bless others or hurt others. We know that we can’t get our words back once we have spoken them so help us, through your Holy Spirit, to make sure our words are always spoken in love. We ask this in Jesus’ name. Amen.
     
    Sundaychildrensfocus.com Andrew Hewlett 2009

    lightoftheworld

  • Children's Sermon -Take up your Cross



    Sunday Lesson – Children’s sermon: Take up your Cross

    Show the children a small cross. Show them a full size cross and remind them of how hard it would be to carry a real life size cross. Taking up our cross and following Jesus is sometimes hard and sometimes it hurts. Mark 8: 27-38 Trinity 14
     
    Object lessonprops: small ornamental cross or necklace, large cross (made out of old 2x4s, 4x4s, or even better 6x6s!)take up cross
     
     
    Children’s sermon: Good Morning Children. This morning one of our bible readings is from Mark chapter 7 where Jesus told his disciples to “take up their cross” and “follow him (Jesus).” (Consider reading the text out loud.) Hmmm. I wonder what he meant?
    Look at this cross I have here in my hand. This would be pretty easy to “take up and carry.” Hold this cross in your hands. Do you agree that this cross would be easy to carry around? If this is the type of cross that Jesus was taking about when he said “take up your cross and follow me,” then following Jesus would be pretty easy. But of course this is just a small cross. The cross that Jesus suffered and died on was a very big cross.
    (Carry out the life size cross) Look at the size of this cross. Even this one was not as big as the real cross that Jesus had to carry before he died. Feel how heavy it is. (Let some of the children pick it up.) Do you think this cross would be harder to carry around than this little one? When Jesus said we needed to “take up our cross and follow him” he was trying to tell us that following him would sometimes be hard and would sometimes hurt.
    These small crosses are to remind us of the big cross that Jesus had to carry and also remind us of how he suffered and laid down his life for us in love. Crosses also remind us that when we follow Jesus it will sometimes hurt – it may even sometime feel like we are dying! So, when you think of the cross, think of the big heavy cross that Jesus had to carry. Think of his love. And remember that following him is not always easy and is even sometimes painful. (Idea: If you had time you could discuss some examples of how following Jesus is sometime inconvenient and sometimes painful.)
     
    Pray: Thank you God that Jesus loved us so much he was willing to take up his cross and suffer for us. Help us to be willing to “take up our own cross” and suffer for Jesus. Thank you God for your great love and for your Holy Spirit who will give us strength and joy even when following you is hard to do. – In Jesus’ name, Amen!
     
    (Consider getting the children to leave the room, helping one another carry the large cross)

    Copyright 2009 Andrew Hewlett sundaychildrensfocus.com   Feel free to use this story on Sunday morning but please give credit to sundaychildrensfocus and consider linking to this site. Thank you. A.H.

     

     

  • Clean on the inside

    Children’s sermon: Clean on the inside.


    This children’s object lessonis based on Jesus’ teaching in Mark 7 regarding what makes a person unclean. (Lectionary – Trinity 12)
    Jesus clean inside
     
    Object lesson props: Plastic tub with soap, water and a towel
     
    Children’s Lesson: Good Morning Children. Look what I have here this morning. I’ve got a big tub of soapy water so I can wash my hands. (Set the water down in front of the children and begin washing your hands. Ask if any of them need to clean their hands as well. Dry off your hands.) Cleaning our hands is an important thing to do because it washes away dirt and germs that we can’t even see. However, in our bible reading this morning in the Gospel of Mark (chapter 7) Jesus talked to some of the religious leaders about washing hands and it turns out that they were more concerned about having clean hands than they were about having clean hearts! It’s good to have clean hands but God is far more concerned about what we are like on the inside. What is most important is to clean up is the things that make us dirty on the inside (selfishness, pride, unforgiveness, bitterness, etc). Having a shower or a bath won’t clean us on the inside. There are things we can do to help us be clean on the inside. If we have bitterness towards another person we can ask God to help us forgive them. If we have done something wrong we can ask God for forgiveness. If we are having trouble following Jesus we can ask the Holy Spirit to help us. In this way God will help us be clean on the inside and not just the outside.
     
    Pray: Dear God, help us to be clean on the outside and the inside of our lives. Thank you for the complete cleansing and forgiveness that we have through your son Jesus Christ. Fill us with your Holy Spirit so we can be clean on the inside and live lives pleasing to you. In Jesus name. Amen!
     
    Copyright Andrew Hewlett Sundaychildrensfocus.com Feel free to use this story on Sunday morning but please give credit to SundayChildrensFocus.com and consider linking to this site. Blessings, A.H.

     

     

  • Jesus the bread of Life

    Children's Story on Jesus the bread of Life


    Object Lesson for Sunday School or Children's Church: John 6:24-35        Bread of Life

    Children's Sermon Idea: Jesus is the bread of life.
     
    Objects needed: Staff of bread or bread buns, several random household items.
    Something to symbolize Jesus (Picture of Jesus or a cross)
     
    Basic idea: Show the children that there is a “stomach” hunger that food can satisfy but there is also a “life” hunger that only Jesus (the bread of life) can satisfy.
     
    Full Story: Good morning Children! This morning I want you to imagine that you are really hungry. Imagine that you haven’t had any food for two days. What would that be like? How would your stomach feel? I’m going to show you some things and I want you to respond by all saying YES and nodding, or all saying NO and shaking your head. Ready? Here we go. Now, what if I gave you this (pull out an object – a wrench). Would that help you? No it wouldn’t. What about this (pull out another object – a hat). Would this satisfy you? No! It wouldn’t. (Continue on with some toys or other objects). Then pull out the bread. What about this bread? YES! You’re right! When we are hungry in our stomachs we need food, like this bread. Only food will satisfy that type of  hunger.
     
    This morning children I want to tell you about another type of hunger. It is a hunger for LIFE – a hunger for meaning, for peace, for love. This hunger for real LIFE, the life God gives cannot be filled with things (hold up some items, toys, etc.) The bible says that only Jesus can satisfy that type of hunger. The bible says that Jesus is the Bread of Life. We need this type of bread (hold up the rolls or buns) or food to fill our stomachs and make us healthy. We also need Jesus (hold a picture of Jesus or a cross) who is the bread or food for the true, wonderful, true LIFE that God has for us.
     
    Pray:Thank you God for provide a way that both types of hunger can be satisfied. We have food, such as bread, to fill our stomachs and to make our bodies work properly. Thank you God for also sending Jesus. He is the Bread of Life. Thank you that he is the one who can satisfy our hunger for a life of joy, love, peace and purpose. Help us to trust him, follow him and know him as our friend. We ask this in the name of Jesus – the Bread of Life! Amen.
     

    Copyright 2009 Sundaychildrensfocus.com   Feel free to use this story on Sunday morning but please give credit to Sundaychildrensfocus.com and consider linking to this page. Thank you. A.H.


  • Jesus the Gate - I am the Good Shepherd

     I am the Gate and I am the Good Shepherd   

     
    Kids sermon idea:  John 10:1 - 10
    Involve the children in acting out aspects of John 10:1- 10. Use the children to hold hands and make a sheep pen and have them experience going in and out through the gate to find pasture and to find security at night. Explain how Jesus is the gate into the Kingdom of God. You could explain how Jesus said he was like the gate and that he was also like the shepherd. (The text from John 10 includes both these ideas)
     
    Object lesson props:  None / However, a makeshift shepherds crook might help identity the shepherd.
     
    Children’s Sermon:  God morning children! In our bible reading this morning we read how Jesus said he was a like a Gate to a sheep pen. I want you to help me act this out so we can understand what Jesus was talking about. Now, I need some of you to make a sheep pen. (Get the children to join hands and form a square or circle.) Now, I also need to make a Gate that can open and close so that the sheep can go in and out. Thank you. Let’s open and close the gate to see how it works. (Get 2 of the children to swing their arms open and closed.) Now, we need a few of you to be sheep. I’ll pretend I am a shepherd and I will lead you in and out of the sheep pen by going through the gate. Since you are sheep, I think you should make some sheep sounds! (bah bah etc.) Let’s open the gate and go inside the sheep pen. Now I’ll close the gate so it’s safe and no wolves can come in and hurt you. Of course, in the morning you need to follow the shepherd out through the gate in order to find pasture and good grass to eat. (Open the gate and lead them out.) Then when night comes they go back in through the gate to safety.
     
    Note: My understanding is that sometimes the shepherd would lie down across the sheep pen entrance make himself be a literal Gate. You could act this out too.
     
    Thank the children and have them sit down. Explain how Jesus said he was the Gate to the sheep pen.
    We have to go through Him. To be a part of God’s family and Kingdom we have to go through Jesus. (We believe in Him, and trust Him to be our saviour and friend.) We can’t be a part of God’s family and God’s Kingdom any other way. We have to come through Jesus the gate. (You could also explain how Jesus said he was also like the shepherd who would protect the sheep and lead them out into good pasture.)
     
    Children’s prayer: Thank you God that through Jesus the Gate we can enter your wonderful Kingdom and family. Thank you that Jesus is also a good shepherd who will watch over us and lead us into good pasture. In Jesus’ name – Amen!
     
    Copyright 2014 Andrew Hewlett and Sundaychildrensfocus.com   Feel free to use this on Sunday morning but please give credit to Sundaychildrensfocus and consider linking to this site. Thanks – A.H.
  • Jesus understands - rejected by friends and family

     Jesus is rejected by his friends and family at Nazareth    

     
    Basic idea: Help children understand the humanity of Jesus and that he understands when we feel sad or rejected.  Have a small group of individual prepared to say negating comments to Jesus. Dramatize how it must have been very painful for Jesus to be rejected by his friends and family at Nazareth, his home town.
    Dramatic Children’s sermon:
    (Ask a small group of volunteers to represent the friends and family of Jesus in Nazareth. Suggest that they be ready to give comments such as; “That’s just Jesus – he’s not so special, “ or “I’ve seen him before, who cares about him?” Have them walk away from you (Jesus) when they are finished insulting and criticizing you.
    Good morning children! This morning our bible reading is about Jesus returning to his home town of Nazareth. Do you think all the people would be excited to see him? Yes, you would think so. Jesus had been doing many wonderful things, he healed many people and was showing his love to many people. However, when he went back to his home town of Nazareth it wasn’t as he had hoped. Now, I have some people that are going to come forward and pretend to be the family and friends of Jesus at Nazareth. (Thank you, please stand just over here)
    Now kids, I’m going to pretend I’m Jesus returning home to Nazareth. Watch closely.
    (Walking towards the group of volunteers with arms outstretched): “Hello Friends! Remember me? It’s Jesus. I used to live here!” (Members of the group respond with disparaging comments and insults. Jesus keeps trying to be friendly but they reject him. Eventually the crowd of “friends” walks off leaving Jesus all alone and downcast.)
    Children, it was so sad that even his friends and some members of his family rejected him. How do you think Jesus felt? (Allow the children to respond) That’s right. Jesus would have been so sad to be rejected by people in his home town. Jesus knows what it’s like to be insulted and hurt. Sometimes people say things to us that make us sad. Perhaps they say something unkind or hurtful. Perhaps they just say they don’t want to play with us. That hurts us inside and can make us sad. If that ever happens to you I want you to remember that Jesus knows what it feels like. He knows what you are feeling inside because he was treated that way too. The good news is that He loves us all the time. He will never leave us or forsake us. 
    Children’s prayer: Dear God, thank you that Jesus knows what we are feeling and he understands because he suffered and was rejected by his friends. Thank you that He will always love us and will never leave us. In Jesus’ name – Amen!

    Copyright 2015 Feel free to use this on Sunday morning but please give credit to Sunday Children's Focus and "Like" this page and consider linking to this web site. Thank you! A.H.


     
  • July 4th Independence Day children's idea

    Lectionary

    4th of July Children’s sermon Independence Day

    (I am from Canada so I don’t have a full appreciation of the 4th of July and it’s historical meaning for those in the United States. That being said, if I did live in the United States here is a possible angle that might go along with the Lectionary reading of Mark 6:1-13:)

    Independence Day

    1. Show various symbols or objects used to honor people. (You could use a medal, a trophy or a big fancy chair etc.) You could also have the kids give a big cheer to demonstrate another way of honoring people.

    2. Explain how Jesus (Mark 6:1-13) was not always honored. As followers of Jesus, we too will not always be honored. Nevertheless, we keep serving Jesus no matter what comes our way. You could also explain how others may not understand our faith in Jesus and make fun of us.

    3. Explain to the children how in some countries Christians don’t have the freedom to openly express their faith. In some countries Christians are persecuted.

    4. Highlight how thankful we are that we (those in the United States on this 4th of July) have the freedom and liberty to live a Christians. We are not under the control of another country and all people have the freedom to practice our faith. That is what we celebrate with fireworks and cheers on the July the fourth.

    Idea: Get the children and the congregation to give a big cheer to show honor to Jesus and his disciples. Lead the children in a prayer of thanksgiving for the freedom experienced in our country. (And perhaps lead in a cheer of thanksgiving)

    Peace – Andrew Hewlett

  • Lectionary Lesson: Jesus sends us out

    Children's Story on Jesus sending out the disciples

    Theme: Jesus sends out his disciples          
     
    Text: Mark 6:1-13      Lectionary: Trinity 4   disciples sent out
     
    Props: None (This is in keeping with the idea that the disciples were instructed to take nothing for the journey.)
     
    Basic idea: A Simple interactive drama on how Jesus sent his disciples out and that he sends us (his disciples today) out into the world.
     
    Full Story: Good Morning Children. I want to read to you a bible passage from the 6th chapter of Mark’s gospel. It’s about Jesus sending out his disciples. (Read the text – paraphrase if necessary) Jesus knew there were many people in the world that were hurting and in need so he called his followers who were learning about him (his disciples) and sent them out to bring healing. He also sent them out with the important message about turning away from sin (what we do wrong) and turning to God. Since we are also disciples of Jesus lets pretend that we are being sent out by him this morning. First of all the bible says that Jesus called the disciple to himself. He knew they needed to spend time with him first before going out into the world. They needed to know his love and his power. So come in close together. (Get the children to huddle in close) Then Jesus sent them out two by two to preach repentance (turning away from what is wrong and turning to God), teach, to heal and to overcome the power of evil.
     
    Explain that on this journey Jesus told them not to take extra things with them. Explain that we need to remember that sometimes people don’t need “things” to help them; they just need a message (repentance and the good news of Jesus) and prayer (for healing and restoration). Those two things are very powerful. God used the disciples when they didn’t have any “things” to give. God will use us to bring life and healing to others even when we don’t have things to give. The message of repentance and faith in Jesus Christ, and our powerful prayers are of central importance in the world.
     
     
    1. Small congregation: Quickly, tell the congregation that you are dividing them into two groups. Ask all the people who were born on an even numbered year to remain seated, leaning forward with their heads in their hands (these are the people needing healing). Tell the rest of the congregation to stand up and turn around facing the opposite direction. (These are the people needing to repent and turn to God).
    2. Larger congregation: (Use the same idea but use only a limited number of church rows)
     
    (Explain that the disciples will be sent out two by two and will be asked to quickly go out into the “world” to touch (in Jesus’ name) the people needing healing and that after receive this “healing touch” to stand up - representing their healing. The people needing repentance (have their backs turned) can turn around when the young disciples look at them and say “repent and turn to God.”
     
    Set up the children in groups of twos and make sure they know what to do. Send the children out with the message of repentance and the power to heal.”
     
    Chaos should ensue (it makes it fun) until all the people are standing facing forward. Check to make sure no one has been missed. Ask the children to gather again. Explain that this was a fun drama but that God really does send us into the world as his disciples. God wants us to share the good news of “repentance and faith” in Jesus Christ and also to pray for those in need.)
     
    Pray: God, thank you for sending the disciples into the world to preach and to heal. Thank you that we are your disciples and that you send us into the world with the Good News of Jesus and also with the power to pray for people – that God would bring healing to then and help them in all their needs. In Jesus’ name. Amen
     
    (Note: If some people are in wheel chairs and can’t stand up ask them to raise their hands as a sign that they haven’t been completely healed yet but they have been made whole by Jesus)
     
    Copyright 2009 Andrew Hewlett Sundaychildrensfocus.com (Feel free to use this story on Sunday morning but please give credit to Sundaychildrensfocus.com and consider linking to this web site)


     

     

     

  • Parable of the Wedding Banquet

    Children’s sermon on the Parable of the Wedding Banquet / Feast

    Matthew 22: 1-14

    Kids talk idea: Ask the children to use their imagination to pretend they invited their friends to a party and ask them how they would feel if everybody was busy. Play to them a series of (pre-recorded) excuses on a phone answering machine (with the standard “beep” after each excuse). Read out a paraphrase of the parable of the Wedding Banquet and explain how God would feel if we never had time for him. (You could flesh this out by saying in the end you might invite others you didn’t know quite as well.)

    Prepare: Arrange to have 4 or 5 friends to phone in a short excuse to your home answering machine (Best to do this all at one time). You could have some fun with the excuses. Then record the series of answers on your cell phone or a voice recorder so that you can play it back to the children on Sunday morning. (Use well known people in the congregation and make sure the excuses are pretty pathetic!)

    Full Children’s Sermon:

    Good morning Children! How many of you have ever had a party and invited friends and family to come? (Allow time for response) Did you send out invitations or phone people to see if they could come? How would you feel if you were planning a really special party and when you invited them to come they all had an excuse why they couldn’t come! How would you feel? Would you be sad? Would you be angry? Now, I have something I would like you to listen to. Imagine I was planning on getting married and was going to have a big party to celebrate. Imagine I sent out messages to all my friends to come and celebrate at my party.  Imagine how I would feel if I heard responses like this on my answering machine: (Play the fun responses you have recorded.)

    How would you feel? (Interact with the children) That’s right, I would feel very sad and I might even feel mad!

    In our bible reading this morning from Matthew chapter 22 Jesus tells a parable about how God wants us to come to Him and be a part of his wonderful family and Kingdom. Jesus tells us that this is like a wonderful party! (Read a simple paraphrase of the parable) Isn’t that sad. Jesus is telling us that God wants us to follow him and join him in a wonderful celebration but most people are too busy with other things! Children, I know you have many important things to do in life. However, I hope and pray that you always have time for God (the Father) and Jesus His Son! If we miss out on following God and being a friend of Jesus it would be like missing out on the best party of all!

    Children’s Prayer: Dear God, Thank you that you love us and want us to be a part of your great family and family celebration. Help us to never be so busy that we put other things before you or your son, King Jesus. In Jesus’ name – Amen!

    Copyright 2017 Sundaychildrensfocus  Feel free to use this but please consider linking to this site and “Like us” on facebook. Blessings, A.H. 

  • Prophet without honor

    A prophet without honor Mark 6: 1-13  honor medal

    Children’s sermon idea: Show the children some visual symbols we use to honor people. Explain how Jesus was not always honored by those around him. Help the children understand how we are not always honored or understood when we share the love of Jesus with others.

    Props: Anything that we use to honor people. An Olympic medal, a fancy chair, large sign with the words “THANK YOU”.

    *(As an alternative / addition you could have the congregation give a cheer of approval or a frown)

    Full Children’s sermon: Good morning children! Do you see this medal? What sort of person would you give this to? That’s right, someone how won a race or did really well at some sports event. Who would you give a giant thank you card to? Yes, someone who did something that you really appreciated. Who might you get to sit in a really fancy chair like this? Sometimes people show their appreciation by cheering. I’m going to get the congregation to give you followers of Jesus a big cheer. (Prompt the congregation to rousing cheer.) Wow! That felt pretty good, didn’t it! We all like to be appreciated and we all like it when people say thank you for something we did. There is a word that explains how we might feel. It’s the word “honor” (You might want to unpack this a bit. You could also ask the congregation to frown as that look at the children.)

    You probably know that Jesus travelled around doing good wherever he went. But did you know that not everyone was happy with him? Not everyone honored him. In fact, sometimes even those very close to him did not understand or honor him for the wonderful things he did. You might think that everybody would be happy with what he did but that is not what always happened.

    As followers of Jesus, we will not always be appreciated or honored for the good things we do. In fact, sometimes close friends may make fun of us or get angry at us. This happened to Jesus, and it will sometimes happen to us. When that happens, it might make us sad, but we should not stop doing good and showing love to others! It’s nice when people honor us with a cheer or a word of thanks, but we need to keep following Jesus even when nobody seems to care.

    (You might want to wrap up the message by getting the congregation to give a big cheer for the kids.)

    First Place / Gold Medal

    Children’s Prayer: Dear God, thank you that Jesus kept on showing love to people even when some didn’t appreciate it. When people don’t say thank you (and honor) us, help us to know that YOU love us. That is the most important thing. In Jesus’ name – Amen!

    Copyright SundayChildrensFocus.com Andrew Hewlett 2021

    (Feel free to use this on Sunday morning but please give credit to this site and “Like” us on your social media platform. Thank you! A.H.)

  • Resources for the Sunday Morning Children's Story

    My prayer is the someday soon this web site would be a great, FREE resourse for children's sermons and Sunday school - Coming up: Object lessons and talks for Christmas - Jesus is the reason for the season! He is the greatest gift of all. 

    Whether one is Anglican (Episcopal), Baptist, Catholic, Evangelical, Orthodox or Penticostal - children need to hear the gospel presented in a lively and biblical way

     Jesus with children

  • 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.

  • Sunday School lesson: Humility


    True Greatness: Children’s Sermon – Sunday School skit /drama

    Children's Sermon on Humility
    Based on the bible reading from Marks Gospel (Mark 9:30-37)     Trinity 15
     
    Who is the Greatest? Give one volunteer various status symbols in order for them look truly “great” (from the world’s perspective). Have another person shine their shoes or in some way display what it is to be a servant. Explain to the children who (according to Jesus) is truly the greater of the two.
     
    Objects needed: To volunteers from the congregation, (1) Big hat, dark sunglasses, lots of money, other status symbols. (2) Shoe shine towel
     
    Good Morning Children. This morning our bible reading from Mark chapter 8 Jesus talks about greatness. What might a great and important person look like? I need two volunteers (Consider using a tall adult for the “great” person and a smaller child for the “servant.”)
    Thank you for helping me out. Mr. Brown, I think I’ll make you into a really impressive person. First of all, put on this big cowboy hat. That looks great! Now, take this first full of money (Make some out of green construction paper). Next, take these dark sun glasses to make you look extra cool. Oh, yes. Take this cigar too. Practice puffing out your stomach and pretend to blow some smoke rings. Wow! – Very impressive.
    I would also like you to put your foot up here so you can have someone shine your shoes. Carol, (younger volunteer) you can help shine the shoes of this rich and famous person. Have them kneel down and shine their shoes with the towel. Children, I’d like you to take a look at this and tell me which one of these two people is the greatest. Yes. It certainly does seem like Mr. Brown the movie star here is the greatest. (If it seems right you could ask Mr. Brown what it feels like to be considered the greatest). However, in our bible lesson from the gospel of Mark Jesus talked about true greatness. (Read the bible text out loud.) Jesus said that the one who was the greatest was the one who was the servant – not the big hotshot! Which of these two individuals looks like they are the servant? That’s right – young Carol here looks as though she is the servant. According to Jesus, Carol is truly the greatest! (Optional question: How does that make you feel Carol? How does that make you feel Mr. Brown?) This is so different than most of how the world sees “greatness.”
    Kids – we often meet people who seem very important and truly “great” in the world’s eyes. But we need to remember that according to God it is those who serve who are truly the greatest. If we want to be truly great we need to learn how to serve others. (Give some concrete examples)
     
    Children’s Prayer: Dear God, we thank you that even though we are not rich and famous we can still be truly great by learning to serve others. Help us to see those in need and help us serve you by serving them. In that way we will be great in your eyes. We ask this in the name of Jesus – the greatest servant of all. Amen!


    Copyright 2009 Andrew Hewlett  SundayChildrensFocus.com   Feel free to use this story on Sunday morning but please give credit to SundayChildrensFocus and consider linking to this site. Blessings, A.H.

     

  • Trusting God to lead us

    Children’s Sermon on Faith and Trust  Lectionary Hebrews 11:1-3, 8-16

    Abraham obeyed God and went, even though he did not know where he was going

    Quick overview: Have one of the children volunteer and have then put a blind fold over their eyes. Tell them you are going to take them on a short journey (around the church sanctuary) but they won’t be able to see where they are going. Explain that because you are a friend and can be trusted, they won’t get lost. Debrief with the children by explaining that we can trust that God will lead us if we seek to follow Him. We won’t always know where we are going but God loves us and will be our sure guide through the journey of life.

    Objects needed:  a blind fold or tea towel to cover a child’s eyes

    Children’s Sermon:  Good morning kids! One of our bible readings today is about Abraham following God, even though he didn’t know exactly where he was going. Many years ago in the land of the Bible God called a man named Abraham to go to a land far away. God sent him off on a journey without a map or a GPS. Abraham didn’t know exactly where he was going but God promised that he would guide him to a very special land and through him create a great nation. It would have been pretty scary not knowing where he would end up making his home. But Abraham knew it would all work out because God promised to be with him and to guide him to just the right place.

    Perhaps I will show you what it was like for Abraham to head off trusting God. I need a volunteer to help me. Yes Janet, come up here and I’m going to put this blind fold over your eyes so you can’t see. Now, I’m going to quickly lead you by the hand around the inside of this church. The rest of you children can follow along for fun. (Lead the blindfolded individual down the aisle, around the back of the church to various places and come back up to another area up near the front. If you have a traveling mic you can ask them various questions: What are you feeling?  Is this scary? Is this fun? etc.) When you get back to the front of the church explain that this little trip was like Abraham heading off to an unknown land.) Well done! Thank you for helping Janet! Many years ago Abrahams adventure was a bit scary but he trusted (had faith) that God would watch over him and lead him.  What is wonderful about this bible story is that the same God who was with Abraham promises to lead us in our lives if we trust and obey him. In life we don’t always know where we are going, and sometimes life just doesn’t make sense! However, if we seek to live the way God wants us to live he will bring us to just the right place where he wants us to be. We will also discover that life is a wonderful adventure when we follow God and his Son Jesus Christ. Jesus promised that he would never leave us so we know we can always trust (have faith) that he will be there as our guide and friend.

    Children’s prayer:  Dear God, thank you that you and your Son Jesus promise to be with us always. Help us, through the power of your Holy Spirit to follow you and obey you wherever you lead us. Thank you that you have a wonderful adventure in store for us. In Jesus’ name – Amen!

     

    Copyright 2016 SundayChildrensFocus.com   Feel free to use this on Sunday Morning but please give credit to Sunday Children's Focus and consider linking to this web site. Thank you!  A.H.

  • Youth Group talk - the Greatest is the servant

    Youth Group skit  - The greatest is the servant -

    (Kids sermon based on Matt 23: 1-12)
     
    Youth Group Skit idea: Have two volunteers come up front. With various articles of clothing, dress up a “big shot.” (Big hat, sun glasses, cigar, fancy coat, etc. You can have fun with this. ) Ask him to puff out his chest and look very important. Choose a smaller person to be a servant with a towel and serving tray. With this visual aid, discuss what it is to be truly great. Explain how Jesus said the greatest is the one who is the servant of all.
     
    Object lesson items: Two bags or boxes: 1. (Rich / Important person) Big hat, sunglasses, cigar, wallet with lots of money, foot rest, etc. Consider adding huge bible or other religious items. 2. (Servant) Towel, platter / tray.
     
    Full Youth Group / Kids sermon:
    Good morning! Today I need two volunteers. (Pick a big strong person.) Bill, would you come up here? You are an important person. However, this morning I’m going to make you really important. Please put on this hat. That looks great. Now, try these sunglasses on and take this cigar. Do you feel pretty powerful and important? Perhaps you should also stand on this box to make you a bit higher than everyone else. Now, I want you to wait there for a minute. You can think about money, power, and how wonderful it is to be so great!
     
    I need a second person now. (Someone small.) Yes, Betsy. Please come up and help me out here. I know he is a little scary but I’d like you to stand next to Bill here. I’m going to dress you up like a servant who helps people. Here is a towel you can hold. That’s for washing peoples feet, washing dishes, drying someone’s tears etc. You can hold this plate in the other hand. You could use it for carrying food to someone who is hungry or carry glasses of water for those who are thirsty.
     
    (To the congregation / group) Here is my question for today. Which of these two people is the greatest? Bill or Betsy? Most people think Bill is the greatest. However, Jesus said it is the servant (Betsy) who is the greatest of all. (If Bill is on the ball, he will be shocked and horrified.) In our bible reading from Matthew chapter 23 Jesus said that it was the one who served others who was the greatest. God sees things much differently than most people. In God’s eyes, the servant who shows love to others is truly the greatest.
     
    Prayer:Dear God, help us to know true greatness by learning to serve and love others. In Jesus’ name – Amen!
     
    Copyright 2011 sundaychildrensfocus.com Andrew Hewlett   Feel free to use this on Sunday morning but please give credit to Sundaychildrensfocus and consider linking to this site. Thanks. A.H.
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