Posted in Children

Children’s Sermon for Luke 19: Zaccheus learns to share

Scripture: Luke 19

Props: 2-3 bags of easily identifiable snacks (carrots, cheetos, starburst)

Good morning! Wow, we really had a treat this morning. We heard the children’s choir sing our bible lesson for today. What do you guys remember happened in the song about Zaccheus?

[Look for: climbed a tree to see Jesus, Jesus told him to come down, Jesus said he’s going to Zaccheus’s house.]

Yep, you guys got it! Now the story of Zaccheus goes on for a little bit more than the song. One of the things we learn early on in the story is that Zaccheus is really, really rich; he’s got a LOT of money. And when Jesus goes to Zaccheus’s house, He gets to show Zaccheus some better ways to spend his money.

Now, let me ask you: what’s something you see mom or dad do when friends come to visit? [look for and encourage any form of response that indicates hospitality – offers drink, makes snacks, makes dinner, grills hamburgers and hotdogs, etc.]

Right, having some snacks or a meal is a really important part of showing guests that they are valuable to us, that we are thankful they’ve come to visit.

Now, here’s a challenge [hold up your 2-3 bags of snacks]: I haven’t gone to the grocery store, but I just found out that I’m going to have some friends at my house right after church, and these carrots, cheetos, and starburst are the only snacks I have. What am I going to do?

[expect responses that suggest each person choosing one snack, get really excited if they suggest giving each person a little bit of each snack and sharing; commend them if they get the sharing idea without you telling them]

[If they don’t give you sharing] what if I give each person a few carrots, a few cheetos and a few starburst? I’ve shared the best of everything I have with my friends.

Well, when Jesus visits with Zaccheus, who didn’t forget to go to the grocery store, Jesus is treated to a really fancy lunch and snacks. So Jesus shows Zaccheus that if he can feed Jesus such wonderful food, he can share some of this food and the extra money he has with poor and sick people to help them.

Pray with me: Dear God, thank you for sending Zaccheus to see Jesus, for letting Zaccheus learn to share, and for showing us just how easy it is to share what we have with others. Amen.

 

I delivered this children’s sermon on June 26, 2016; the children’s choir had sung “Zaccheus Was a Wee Little Man” earlier in the service.

Posted in Children

Children’s Sermon for Matthew 5:14-16 – You are the light of the world

Scripture: Matthew 5: 14-16

Props: enough LED tea light candles (dollar store) and 1 LED or flame taper (similar to Baptism candle)

Assistance: ask an usher or other worship attendant to turn the lights out at your signal during the Children’s Sermon

Action: As you greet the gathered children, light the Baptism candle from the Christ candle on the altar or table.

Who here gets nervous or anxious or scared sometimes? Maybe even in the dark? [allow for 3-4 responses]

Me too, which is why I light my Baptism candle. When we baptism children and adults here, most of the time Preacher Mike [name your own pastor/reverend] usually focuses on the water, but right at the end of the baptism, one of the elders lights a candle from the table and gives it to the parents or the adult.

Why do you think we do that? [allow for 2-3 responses]

Those are really great answers. Let’s look at the Bible to see what Jesus has to say:

In Matthew chapter 5, Jesus says “You are the light of the world. Let your light shine before others so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven. (ESV)

[If you’re using a flame taper, consider including a quick segment focusing on how the acolyte takes the flame from the Christ candle before snuffing out the candles and taking the light out of the church building into the world.]

Now I need your help with a quick experiment and I’ve asked Mr. Mark (sound tech) to help me [Mark turns out the lights in the sanctuary].

[Lead the children to the head of the center aisle so the most adults can see.]

We’re going to pretend for a minute that everyone here who’s not right here in our group, they don’t know who Jesus is or how good and important He is to us.

Okay, I need everyone to gather around in a really tight circle. [place the basket of LED tea lights in the center of the circle.]

Now I need 1 volunteer. Great, thank you, Connor! I want you to hold this one candle here in the circle.

[turn to the congregation] Now we need some help from the congregation this morning. What I want you to do is clap to help us know how much light you can see. So if you see a little light, clap a little. And if you see a lot of light, clap a lot!

Okay, Connor [name of the volunteer], hold your candle up so that as many people as possible can see it. [with all of the children standing, mostly only the children and a few really close adults can see, so the clapping is a little.]

Wow, I didn’t hear much clapping, so they must not be able to see just the one light. Can I get another person to hold up a second candle? Great, thank you, Caroline! Now let’s try again with TWO candles. [little more clapping]

Oh, wow, I heard a little more clapping that time. What if EVERYONE holds up a candle at the same time. [claps and cheers]

Did you hear that?! Wow! I think EVERYONE saw your light that time. That’s what happens when everyone who comes to church shares just one blessing from Jesus with someone else in the world each week. We make a huge bright light that everyone can see and want to follow with us.

Pray with me: Dear God, thank you for sending Jesus to be our light and for showing us how to be a light to others. Amen

 

I delivered this Children’s Sermon on June 19, 2016 at Palmetto Presbyterian Church, Mt. Pleasant, SC.