Children's sermon on Giving Thanks (Saying Thank you to God)
When the children are gathered up front say a brief word about the importance of saying thank you. Ask if there are any members of the congregation that know how to say “Thank you” in their native tongue. Ask them to say it out loud. (You could ask the children to try repeating the phrase) You could include ‘thank you” in sign language. After hearing from 4 or 5 individuals explain how God knows all languages and how we can say thank you to in any language in prayer.
Objects needed – None
Individual from different ethnic backgrounds could be approached ahead of time but you can also just do this spontaneously.
Full Thanksgiving message for the kids:
Good morning children. Do you know what is special about this Sunday? That’s right it is Thanksgiving Sunday. We want to give thanks to God every day, but on this Sunday we want to take time to remember all that things that we are thankful for in Life. What are some of the things that you are thankful for? (Spend a brief moment interacting with the children) Now, when I want to say “thank you” I just use my normal English language and say “Thank you God!” But, in other countries they say “thank you” in different languages. Let see if there are any people in our congregation that can say “thank you” on a different language. (Ask individuals to stand up and say thank you in their native tongue. It might be fun to see if the children can repeat the phrases in the foreign language. Consider having someone share using sign language. Thank the various individuals who helped out.)
Now, children as you can see there are many ways to say thank you. The good news is that God is very smart (in fact he knows everything!) and he can understand every language in the world. It doesn’t matter what language we use. The important thing is that we do say thank you to God for the many ways we have been blessed. Join me now in saying thank you to God.
Children’s Prayer: Dear God, there are so many things we are thankful for (perhaps mention some of the items the children mentioned) but above all we are thankful for your great love that you have for each one of us. Thank you also for sending Jesus to be our Saviour and our friend – In Jesus’ name we pray, Amen!
(You could also close by having the group give a loud “Thank you God!”)
Note: American Sign Language for Thank You – Place your open hand and fingers up against your closed mouth. Bring your hand out and down toward the individual with your palm facing up.
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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
Title: We have so much – let’s give thanks to God