Basic idea: Engage the children in pretending you are early Christians trying to hide from Roman soldiers 2000 years ago. To add to the drama by placing some secret fish symbols in various places leading the way to where you will secretly worship. Explain how Christians still must do this in some countries today.
(Ahead of time: Place some secret fish symbols on door posts and hallways. This might lead to a secret room where you will open and read from a hidden bible. )
Hold up a Christian fish symbol. Ask the children where they have seen this sign. Explain how the early Christians sometimes used this as a secret symbol during times of persecution. Then ask the children to very quiet and imagine they are hiding from Roman soldiers. Lead the way and help them to discover the “secret” Christian fish symbols on the way to the meeting place. When you arrive at the secret location find a “hidden” bible and read out some encouraging bible passages in hushed tones.
Debrief: Explain how thankful we are that we live in a time and place where we don’t have to be afraid of following Christ. (That being said, you could give examples of how Christians are sometime made fun of because of their faith in Jesus) Let the children know that in some places of the world Christians must to hide and even suffer greatly for their faith. Lead in prayer for the persecuted church (their brothers and sisters in Christ)
Children’s prayer: Dear God, thank you that we live in a country where we can freely talk about Jesus and his love. Please help our Christian brothers and sisters (and show us how we might help them) in those places where they are suffering for being followers of Jesus. In Jesus’ name – Amen!
Sundaychildrensfocus – Andrew Hewlett 2021
In Mark 6:31 Jesus said: “Come away with me to a quite place and get some rest.” (Rough Draft)
Summary: Gather the children up front and tell them you have some important things to tell them / read to them. Prearrange to have a number of people interrupt you with various distractions. (Prayer requests, your cell phone going off, people asking for various things. Have some fun with this.) Explain how it’s not working very well with all the noise and distractions. Tell the children about the Mark chapter 6 where Jesus was tired and exhausted by all the people in need and how he asked his disciple get away with him to a quiet place. Explain how we all need time to withdraw from the crowds and spend some quiet time with Jesus.
Full children’s message for the text this week: (Pre-arrange to have various people interrupt you and distract you.) Good morning children! I want you to gather around me while I read out a very important words from the bible (I’m going to read out some special Jesus sayings from the gospel of John). Begin reading in a soft voice as the interrupting people come forward with various requests. Be friendly but make it clear that your quiet time with the children is not working very well with all the disruptions.
Debrief: Well children, I’m not sure if you heard those important words from the bible with all the people bothering us. In the Gospel of Mark (chapter 6) it says that Jesus and the disciples were healing people and doing wonderful things. However, there were so many people in need they were getting exhausted. Jesus encouraged the disciples to come away with him to a quiet place where they could get some rest.
In our lives we can become so busy and bothered that we need to get away and spend time alone with Jesus. In fact, I think we should find some time ever day just to be alone with Jesus. We don’t need to go far. It might be in a quiet room in the house or your favourite spot outside in the yard.(Just make sure you tell your parents where you are.) It just needs to be some place that is quiet. We could read our bible, pray or just be rest quietly. You might think of Jesus and the wonderful things he did or listen for his still small voice of love and assurance. Jesus wanted to spend time alone with the disciples and he also wants to spend quiet time with us as well.
Children’s Prayer: Dear God, thank you that Jesus wanted his disciples to come away with him to be together and find rest. Please help us to set aside some time in our busy day) to rest with you and your Son Jesus. In Jesus’ name – Amen!
Copyright Andrew Hewlett (and Sunday Childrens Focus) Feel free to use this on Sunday but please facebook "like" this page (on left side of menu) and consider linking your web site. Thank you! A.H.
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.
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:)
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
Page 2 of 3