Christian Education Corner

February 21, 2021 Post

“But as you excel in everything—in faith, in speech, in knowledge, in all earnestness, and in our love for you—see that you excel in this act of grace also.”

 ~2 Corinthians 8:7 

Greetings!

I hope you and your family had a happy and healthy week.  In class on Sunday we will be discussing grace and forgiveness.  Through drama and hands-on activities we will be discussing the meaning of the Prodigal Son parable

If your child/ren are unable to attend the in-person class, the Sunday School lesson follows.  Simply adjust the lesson to meet the age of your child/ren and utilize whatever materials you might have at home.  I wish you and yours a blessed and healthy week ahead.

Peace, Blessings and Love,

Pastor Schalm

 


 

Parable of the Two Sons (Matthew 21:28-32) Lesson for Lent

 

Lesson Introduction

Begin by inviting each child to create two shoe nametag.  Provide the outline of a shoe on heavy paper or cardstock.  Instruct children to decorate, cut out, and write their name on the shoe.  The shoe nametags will be hung on the big shoe and one will be made into a necklace by adding holes with a hole punch and tying on a piece of yarn or string.

Discuss these questions:  What shape is your nametag? What do we need shoes for? “Walk His Ways” is our Lent theme.  Who is “his” talking about? What are some things we can do to “Walk His Ways”?

 

Game:  “Shoe Are You?” Each child removes one shoe and they are tossed into a big pile.  Everyone picks a shoe that is not their own, finds the owner, learns their name, and shares the answer to a question given by the leader like, “What’s your favorite color?” or “What grade are you in?” etc.  Several rounds may be played.  After last round, have children sit in a circle and put the shoes in a pile again.  The object this time is for everyone to find their own shoe and put it back on, but they CANNOT TOUCH their own shoe.  Debrief/discuss.

COVID CONVERSION: ONE SHOE OF EACH CHILD IS THROWN FROM WHERE THEY SIT ONTO THE FLOOR.  EACH CHILD THEN POINTS TO ANOTHER CHILD’S SHOE (REMAINING IN THEIR SEAT). 

 

Story: The parable story is taught in this lesson using the following drama  script.  You may also want to read Matthew 21:28-32 from the Bible.  Use these follow-up discussion questions after the drama show:

 

Parable Drama Show:  The Two Daughters

Matthew 21:28-32

Materials: two female/one male (Can use 3 females – mom instead of dad)

 

Dad: (holding garbage) uh.  Ugh UGH!?!?!?  This garbage smells horrible and it weighs a ton!  Did something crawl in here and die?  P.U.!!!!  Jenna?  Julie?  GIRLS!  Where are you?
Jenna: Here I am, Dad!  Wanna hear my new song?  (sings obnoxiously and loud, something like “Tomorrow” from Annie or another song…)
Dad: (interrupts the singing) Jenna, Jenna, JENNA!??!?!  Your song is um…ah…..beautiful honey, but I need your help.
Jenna: Help?  What is it, Dad?
Dad: I’m running late for my meeting, but we have to get this garbage out of here before our whole house starts smelling like a toxic waste dump.  Could you just take the bag out to the garbage can in the backyard?
Jenna: What are you, crazy?  Future singing stars don’t do garbage, Dad.  Ewww!  What would that do for my image?  I can’t touch that smelly stuff.  No way!  Besides, I can’t take even a second away from my practice, not even a second! (begins singing again and goes behind curtain)
Dad: OH for crying out loud!  Julie, Julie, JULIE!??!  Get in here please!  Where are you?
Julie: (pops up with a big bubble, either gum or a balloon, and we can’t understand her words because of her bubble) sdakjkdffl;aksdfjakl!
Dad: What?
Julie: (still can’t understand here) arfjdlskafjsdklfj
Dad: (pops the bubble) Enough nonsense!  I need your help.  I’m super late for my meeting, this garbage smells just horrible, and your sister is too wrapped up in her silly singing to be helpful, so would you please just take this outside for me?  I have to go!
Julie: No prob, Bob!  I mean…Dad!  Get outta here.  I’ll take that smelly stuff to the garbage can.  You can count on me.
Dad: Thanks, Dear!  You’re the best!  I’ll leave the bag by the door.  (goes behind curtain) Seeya later!
Julie: Whatever…Now where was I?  I have to top the world’s largest bubble record.  I just have to!  (makes blowing noises, as she disappears behind the curtain)
Jenna: (returns, carrying garbage) Ewwww!  What is this still doing in here?  Maybe I can sing and take care of this smelly garbage at the same time.  Garbage can, here I come!  (sings song about garbage maybe? and moves behind curtain).
THE END

What happened?  Which daughter did the right thing?  Is it better to say you’ll do something or to actually do it?  I wonder how the father felt?  Do you ever say you will do things and not do it?  What do you do to help your family?  How do you feel when you’re helping others?

 

Art Activity: Help children write and draw coupons to give to family members, redeemable for caring, helpful things like: a hug, setting the table, folding laundry, reading a story, etc.  It may be helpful to brainstorm ideas for the coupons as a group before you begin the project.  While working on the project, discuss how these coupons could be walking his ways.  Ask whether the children think it’s more important to give someone a coupon or to actually fulfill what the coupon offers.

Prayer: Consider using a “repeat after me prayer” to close each of the Lent lessons.  Pause between every few words, allowing the children to echo what you have said.  Dear Jesus,/You are/so good./Help us/to walk/your ways/and serve others/as you would serve./Amen.

 


 

Posted by admin in Christian Education Corner

February 14, 2021 Post

“Carry each other's burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ.” ~Galatians 6:2

Greetings!

As we work our way through February, I hope you and your family are well.   Despite having to social distance, it is a blessing to be able to meet for Sunday School.   This week we will be discussing “heavy hearts” and our responsibility to help lighten those hearts by carrying one another’s burdens.

If your child/ren are unable to attend the in-person class, the Sunday School lesson follows.  Simply adjust the lesson to meet the age of your child/ren and utilize whatever materials you might have at home.  I wish you and yours a blessed and healthy week ahead.  Happy Valentine’s Day!

Peace, Blessings and Love,

Pastor Schalm

 


 

Teaching Children To Care For One Another

Introduction:

Call one kid up (small kid is a good idea) and give them an empty back pack. Start to fill it with small books. Talk about how they are normal every day things. Occasionally put really big books in it. Explain that the bigger books are big things in life that happen. After awhile, if you put enough big books the small child won’t be able to hold the bag up. Have them put the bag down and tell them we’ll come back to it later. Talk about how in life we are often burdened by a lot of things. Sometimes those things are so big that we can’t stand up on our own.

TS: Fortunately we have very specific instructions about this very subject in our Bible.

  1. Help each other (vs 1-2)

Exp: Gal 6:1-2

Brethren, even if anyone is caught in any trespass, you who are spiritual, restore such a one in a spirit of gentleness; each one looking to yourself, so that you too will not be tempted. Bear one another’s burdens, and thereby fulfill the law of Christ.
NASU

As a body of believers we are too help each other out. If someone is going through some things it is our duty to help that person out (Examples: Grandparent passes, pet dies, parents get a divorce, struggling at school, did not make the team …. Anything that a child may encounter)

Ill: Have the first kid come up and then have a bigger stronger kid come up 2. Have the bigger kid help the little kid pick up the bag. (Use siblings due to Covid protocols)

App:   Now we can help carry each other’s burdens different ways. One of those ways is through doing physical things like this. (Ask the kid if they of any other ways of helping someone who is having problems emotional or physical) One of my favorite ways to help someone is simply being there to listen to them. If you are willing to listen to someone you make them feel special. Which they are! Because God has made them special just like you.

TS: But did you know that helping each other out isn’t just something to do?

  1. It’s the law! (vs 2)

Exp: The law of Christ mentioned here is in reference to:

John 13:34-35
A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another, even as I have loved you, that you also love one another. “By this all men will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.”

Jesus spent his life serving others.

Ill: Jesus washing the feet of the disciples.

App: If we serve each other then we are acting as Jesus did. When people see us caring for each other they see how big the Love of God is.

TS: Do you know what another reason to help each other out is?

III. Because you’ll need help one day too. (vs 3-5)

Exp: Gal 6:3-5

3 For if anyone thinks he is something when he is nothing, he deceives himself. 4 But each one must examine his own work, and then he will have reason for boasting in regard to himself alone, and not in regard to another. 5 For each one will bear his own load.
NASU

Paul warns us here not to act like you don’t need any help. You have to realize that everyone needs help at some point. Sometimes it’s hard to ask for help. But helping each other is one of the MAJOR reasons that God has given us Christian friends.

ACTIVITY: Give children small hearts and have them write some burdens and some ways in which they can help to lift them.  In class, the burden hearts will be taped to the Heavy Heart and the ways in which to help hearts will be taped to the Light Heart.

OUTREACH: Children will make cards for Nursing Home.

FUN ACTIVITY:  Children will get Valentine Cards and make a Valentine Truck treat to take home.

Conclusion: Close in Prayer

 


 

Posted by admin in Christian Education Corner

February 07, 2021 Post

And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity.”
~
Colossians 3:14

 

Greetings!

Happy February!  Here we are already a week into February.  Time truly does seem to fly.  As we embark upon Valentine’s Day, the Sunday School children will be learning about love that counts; the kind of love that we experience when we give it away.

If your child/ren are unable to attend the in-person class, the Sunday School lesson follows.  Simply adjust the lesson to meet the age of your child/ren and utilize whatever materials you might have at home.  All valentine cards can be brought to the church by February 14th.  All cards will be delivered to the Applewood Nursing Facility that afternoon.  I wish you and yours a blessed and healthy week ahead.

Peace, Blessings and Love,

Pastor Schalm

 


 

“A Love That Counts” Sunday School Lesson from Matthew 22:34-46

 

Opening Activity – All About Love – Love Messages
In this variation of  Telephone, the kids will send messages 3 different ways.

  1. No Words – Give a volunteer one of the following songs to hum or whistle and see if any of the kids can figure it out.
    1. Jesus Loves the Little Children
    2. I Love You, You Love Me (the “Barney” song)
    3. Jesus Loves Me

Lesson – All About Love
Before we get started, there are a few actions you need to know.  When I say ‘LOVE’ I need you to cross your arms over your chest like your giving yourself a great big hug.  When I say ‘HEART’ I need you to make a heart shape with your hands.  When I say ‘SOUL’ I need you to point both thumbs at your chest.  When I say ‘MIND’ I need you to put your hands on your head.  And when I say ‘NEIGHBOR’ I need you to point at anyone else in the room.  Now let’s get started.

The Bible has a lot to say about LOVE.  It tells you God LOVES you.  It tells you that God wants you to LOVE him.  It tells you to LOVE your NEIGHBOR.
There is so much in the Bible about LOVE that some people call it a LOVE letter.
A long time ago when Jesus was on earth, people thought the Bible was just about rules.  Do this.  Don’t do that.  Say this.  Wear that.  Go here.  Worship there.
Rule after rule after rule.

There was a little bit about LOVE, but there were so many rules that was all people cared about.

But LOVE was all Jesus cared about.  He came here to show each one of us just how much He LOVES us.  He LOVES us so much that even died for our sins so we can live with Him forever and always.

There were a whole bunch of people who really liked Jesus’ message of LOVE, but there were also a bunch of people who really liked the rules.  They thought following the rules was all that mattered, but they forgot that everyone makes mistakes sometimes and disobeys those rules.  And then what?!?  Is that it?  One broken rule and it’s all over?
No way!  Jesus came so that even when we make mistakes, He can save us.  It’s such an amazing way to show just how much He LOVES us.

One day the rule followers wanted to know what Jesus thought was the most important one of all.  If we could only ever follow one single rule, which one would it be?  They expected Jesus to say one of the 10 Commandments; like obeying your parents, or keeping the Sabbath a day only for God.  But Jesus had an even better one.  The best rule of all, and it’s all bout LOVE.

Jesus said, “LOVE the Lord your God with all your HEART and with all your SOUL and with all your MIND.  This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: LOVE your NEIGHBOR as yourself.  All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.” – Matthew 22:37-40 NIV

Jesus turned all of those rules into just two simple ones.  LOVE God.  And LOVE others.
When you keep the Sabbath as a day for Jesus, that’s a way of loving Him.  And when you obey your parents, that’s a way of loving them.  Every single rule can fit into one of those two.  It was so simple.

Now what do you think it means to LOVE God with all your HEART, SOUL, and MIND?  It really just means that you LOVE Him completely.  So you can’t just say you LOVE God, or just put money in the offering, or just listen to the sermon; you need to LOVE God all the time and in every way.

And thankfully, Jesus LOVES us so much that forgives us when we forget to LOVE Him and our NEIGHBORS like we should.  Which is great news, because everyone could use a little more LOVE.

Activity  – All About Love

Have children give examples of how they can share/show that LOVE counts with all the parts of their bodies that God gave them.

  • Ears (example: listening when others are talking, listening in church)
  • Eyes (example: paying attention to others needs, reading the Bible)
  • Nose & Mouth (example: singing hymns and praise music, speaking kind words)
  • Mind (example: learning about Jesus, thinking of new ways to help)
  • Heart (example: praying to God, telling your parents you love them)
  • Hands (example: holding the door, cleaning up the sanctuary)
  • Feet (example: going on mission trips, walking with someone to their car)


ACTIVITY:  Have children make and decorate Valentine Cards for Applewood Nursing Facility.


Closing Prayer – All About Love
Ask for a volunteer to pray for the class before leaving, and encourage them to tell God they love Him, and ask Him to help them show that love to others.

 


 

Posted by admin in Christian Education Corner

January 24, 2021 Post

 

“Whoever keeps his mouth and his tongue keeps himself out of trouble.” ~ Proverbs 21:23

 

Greetings!

As we work our way through January, I hope you and your family are well.   Despite having to social distance, it is a blessing to be able to meet for Sunday School.   This week we will be discussing the “blessings and curses” of the tongue.  For certain, our words matter.

If your child/ren are unable to attend the in-person class, the Sunday School lesson follows.  Simply adjust the lesson to meet the age of your child/ren and utilize whatever materials you might have at home.  I wish you and yours a blessed and healthy week ahead.

Peace, Blessings and Love,

Pastor Schalm

 


 

The Power of Words (Proverbs 18:21) Sunday School Lesson

 

Supply List:  Bibles, word puzzle and coloring page, markers/crayons, slips of paper with the Scriptures regarding words that bring life and words that bring death for students to read during the lesson, copies of ways to pray for our words

Learning Goal:   Students will learn that we need God to use our tongues wisely

Learning Activity #1:  Word puzzle & Coloring page

Learning Activity #2:  After the lesson have students act out scenarios where one student uses unkind words and another chooses kind words to respond.

Take Home:  At the end of the lesson there is a sheet (Daily Prayers to use our words wisely) to help students to pray.

Memory Verse: Proverbs 18:21 “Death and life are in the power of the tongue, and those who love it will eat its fruit.”

Bible Lesson: Proverbs-The Power of Words

(Begin with prayer)

Play the guessing game ‘What am I’? I can hide or I can show myself. I am made up of many muscles. I am usually always wet. I can hurt people or help people. I can be curled. I help people taste food. I am usually pink. (Ask questions until a student answers a tongue)

God created each of us with a tongue. A tongue is an important part of our body. A tongue helps us to eat our food and speak. When used to speak our tongues are very powerful.

Let’s read our memory verse together: Proverbs 18:21 “Death and life are in the power of the tongue, and those who love it will eat its fruit.”

Have you ever been hurt by someone’s words? (Allow time to share) Have you ever been helped by someone’s words? This verse is talking about the two powers our tongues have. We can use our power to bring death. Death comes when we use our tongues for evil and harming others. We can use our power to bring life when we use our tongues for good by helping others.

Big Question: Why do we need God? We need God to use our tongues wisely.

  1. Words that bring life

Let’s go to the Book of Genesis to look for evidence that words have the power. Read Genesis 1:3. How did God create light? (He used His words to speak it into existence) The rest of the chapter is filled with God said, ‘Let there be’ and the world and all that is in it was created. God’s Words are so powerful that they have power to create life!

God the Father spoke to God the Son and God the Holy Spirit and said, “Let us make man in our own image, after our likeness.” (Genesis 1:26) Man was created in God’s image. God made the first man from the dust of the ground and breathed His breath into his nostrils and he became a living being. (Genesis 2:7)

Before sin entered the world Adam and Eve walked in the garden and talked with God. Being made in the image of God, Adam and Eve had the power to use their words to speak life and glorify God and enjoy Him forever.

Let’s look at Scriptures that show us how our words can bring life (if you made slips of these verses have students read their verse):

Proverbs 16:24 “Gracious words are like a honeycomb, sweetness to the soul and health to the body.”

Proverbs 10:11a “The mouth of the righteous is a fountain of life”

Proverbs 12:18b “The tongue of the wise brings healing.”

Romans 10:9 “If you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved.”

  1. Words that bring death

In the beginning of God’s creation death did not exist. In the beginning Adam and Eve’s words could only be life giving words. When sin entered the world it brought death and words now had the power of life and the power of death.

Let’s look in our Bibles to see how God describes our tongues:

James 3:3-9 “If we put bits into the mouths of horses so that they obey us, we guide their whole bodies as well. 4 Look at the ships also: though they are so large and are driven by strong winds, they are guided by a very small rudder wherever the will of the pilot directs. 5 So also the tongue is a small member, yet it boasts of great things. How great a forest is set ablaze by such a small fire! 6 And the tongue is a fire, a world of unrighteousness. The tongue is set among our members, staining the whole body, setting on fire the entire course of life, and set on fire by hell. 7 For every kind of beast and bird, of reptile and sea creature, can be tamed and has been tamed by mankind, 8 but no human being can tame the tongue. It is a restless evil, full of deadly poison. 9 With it we bless our Lord and Father, and with it we curse people who are made in the likeness of God.

What did you learn about our tongues as we read this passage of Scripture?  (Allow responses)

Here are some Scriptures that teach us that our tongues have the power of death (if you made slips of these verses have students read their verse):

Proverbs 12:18 “There is one whose rash words are like sword thrusts, but the tongue of the wise brings healing.” When we are not careful with our tongues our words are like stabbing someone in the heart with a sword.

Psalm 55:21 “His speech was smooth as butter, yet war was in his heart; his words were softer than oil, yet they were drawn swords.” Sometimes we pretend to be kind with our words but we are being dishonest and are ready to harm others with our words. (Flattery)

Proverbs 15:1 “A soft answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.” When we choose to use harsh words we stir up anger.

  1. We need God to use our tongues wisely

Our tongues are powerful! The verses in James 3 showed us that our tongues are powerful and cannot be tamed. What a great reminder that we need God to use our tongues wisely!

We learned a few weeks ago that we need to “Keep your heart with all vigilance, and from it flow the springs of life.” (Proverbs 4:23) Proverbs 21:23 tells us something similar about our tongues. “Whoever keeps his mouth and his tongue keeps himself out of trouble.”

We need God to save us from sin and change our hearts. Our ‘hearts are deceitful above all things, and desperately sick; who can understand it?’ (Jer. 17:9) When we put our faith in Jesus for the forgiveness of our sin we become a new creation (2 Corinthians 5:17). As a new creation we now have the power of the Holy Spirit living inside of us. He gives us the power to obey what God teaches us so that we can daily walk in wisdom.

We need to spend time reading, studying and meditating on God’s Word so His truth is filling our hearts, guarding us from sin. When our hearts are filled with God’s Word our mouths will speak life because God’s Words are life. (The good person out of the good treasure of his heart produces good, and the evil person out of his evil treasure produces evil, for out of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaks. Luke 6:45) We will have His power to share the Good News with others so that when they believe the power of Christ’s death, burial and resurrection will save them. (Romans 1:16-17)

Scriptures we can use to help us pray for God to help us use our tongues wisely (if you made copies of the daily prayers for life giving words. Hand them to the students to look at together. There are 7 prayers that you can pray one for each day of the week or all seven every day):

  • Make my words and the thoughts of my heart acceptable in Your sight. Psalm19:14 “Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in Your sight, O LORD, my rock and my redeemer.”
  • Keep me from speaking when what I say could get me in trouble. Proverbs 21:23 “Whoever keeps his mouth and his tongue keeps himself out of trouble.”
  • Help me to be committed not to sin with my mouth. Psalm 17:3b “I have purposed that my mouth will not transgress.”
  • Keep my words focused on praising You and pointing others to You. Psalm 71:15 “My mouth will tell of Your righteous acts, of Your deeds of salvation all the day,”
  • Fill my heart with your Word so that my tongue will speak your truth in my conversations. (Luke 6:45)
  • Help me to share your Words that bring eternal life. (“Simon Peter answered him, “Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life” John 6:68)
  • Help me speak words that build up others. Ephesians 4:29 “Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up,”

As we close in prayer let’s take a few minutes to pray silently to the Lord. If He has shown you sin in the words you speak, take this time to confess your sin and turn from it and ask for His help to speak words that bring life.

CRAFT: Have kids make a big tongue and then on a different sheet of paper write and cut out kind and encouraging words.  Have them glue it to the tongue.

(Close in prayer)

Daily Prayers to use my words wisely

  1. Lord, please make my words and the thoughts of my heart acceptable in Your sight. Psalm19:14 “Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in Your sight, O LORD, my rock and my redeemer.”
  2. Lord, please keep me from speaking when what I say could get me in trouble. Proverbs 21:23 “Whoever keeps his mouth and his tongue keeps himself out of trouble.”
  3. Lord, help me not to sin with my mouth. Psalm 17:3b “I have purposed that my mouth will not transgress.”
  4. Lord, please keep my words focused on praising You and pointing others to You. Psalm 71:15 “My mouth will tell of Your righteous acts, of Your deeds of salvation all the day,”
  5. Please fill my heart with your Word so that my tongue will speak your Truth in my conversations. (“The good person out of the good treasure of his heart produces good, and the evil person out of his evil treasure produces evil, for out of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaks.” Luke 6:45)
  6. Help me to share your Words that bring eternal life. (“Simon Peter answered him, “Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life” John 6:68)
  7. Help me speak words that build up others. Ephesians 4:29 “Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up,”

 

 


 

Posted by admin in Christian Education Corner

January 17, 2021 Post

Anyone who has been stealing must steal no longer, but must work, doing something useful with their own hands, that they may have something to share with those in need.” ~ Ephesians 4:28

Greetings!

I hope you and your family had a great week!  Following all the pandemic protocols, children will have the opportunity to meet for in-class instruction on Sunday, January 17.   While Pastor Schalm leads the morning’s worship service, Sunday School teacher, Candace Poet will take the lead in teaching children (K-6) a lesson on sharing.   All older students will have the opportunity to meet with Sunday School teacher, Lori Rogers.

We will continue throughout the year to gather in person for Sunday School providing no additional, necessary pandemic mandates be set.  This morning’s lesson, “Sharing is Caring,” follows this greeting.

I wish you and your family a very blessed week ahead.

Peace, Blessings and Love,

Pastor Schalm

 


 

Sharing is Caring….What it means to be part of the body of Christ

 

Scripture Story: Matthew 14:13-21
Lesson Opener:  Sharing to get it done… start with a quick team activity…give each student a few pieces of a jigsaw puzzle, and invite them to try putting it together. After a couple minutes of working alone, invite students to share their puzzle pieces and work together to complete the puzzle picture. Was the puzzle easier alone, or sharing?

CANDACE: WE WILL USE A FOUR PIECE PUZZLE.  EACH CHILD WILL BE GIVEN THREE PIECES OF THE PUZZLE.  YOU WILL HAVE THE OTHER ONE.  ONCE THE CHILDREN PUT THE THREE PIECES TOGETHER YOU WILL “SHARE” THE FINAL PIECE THEY NEED WITH THEM.  THE PUZZLE CAN THEN BE COLORED AND TAKEN HOME. 

 

PARENTS, the puzzle used in class follows the lesson

Lesson and Verses: 

ASK THE CHILDREN: What are some things that we share? Why do we share? Why is it important to share?

CANDACE: READ, A MARVELOUS PICNIC / PAGE 124

PARENTS: READ BIBLE STORY FOUND IN MATTHEW 14:13-21

Ask what the little boy shared?  Ask what Jesus did with what he shared?  Explain and really hit home the fact that Jesus does the same today.  He takes all that we give, whether material, time or talent, and uses it for good.  He turns it into something much bigger or greater than we could ever imagine.

Explain to the children that we share God’s love, not only through words and explicitly telling people about Him, but also by merely demonstrating living the way Jesus would.  We can share things like time, love, and talents. Even if we don’t have money or things that seem like they are worth much, we have much to share and contribute and God can do great things with them.It’s also significant to note for students that nothing is truly ours to begin with. All that we have, including our very lives, belongs to God first and will go back to Him in the end.

MAKE A SHARING CHART: ADD STUDENTS NAME TO THE CHART AND ASK THEM TO SHARE ONE OR MORE WAYS IN WHICH THEY “SHARED” LAST WEEK.  ADD THESE THINGS NEXT TO THEIR NAME.  HANG THE CHART UP AND ADD TO IT FOR SEVERAL WEEKS. 

CANDACE: THE CHART IS ON THE TEACHING TABLE

CRAFT/ACTIVITYMake it to give away… provide each student with two small paper bags and have them decorate them. Also provide each student with two bags of small prizes (candy, stickers, etc.). Invite students to put a bag of prizes into each decorated bag and then have them select another student in class to give one of their bags to.  Instruct them to then take the second bag home to share with a family member or neighbor.  Each child should receive a bag from another child to take home.  Make sure that a child is not given more than one.  Again, talk to them about the importance of sharing kindness and how it makes us feel good when we do.

CANDACE: HAVE CHILDREN POINT TO WHO THEY WANT TO GIVE THEIR BAG TO IN CLASS AND THEN PLACE IT ON THAT CHILD’S TABLE TO GRAB BEFORE HE/SHE DEPARTS FOR HOME. 

CLOSE IN PRAYER

 

 

THE FOLLOWING COLOR SHEET WILL BE CUT INTO FOUR PIECES AND SERVE AS
THE PUZZLE FOR THE OBJECT LESSON.

 

 

Posted by admin in Christian Education Corner

January 10, 2021 Post

GREETINGS

“Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good; his love endures forever.” ~ 1 Chronicles 16:34

 

Greetings!

I hope you and your family are doing well and enjoying the New Year.  Now more than ever, it is important to remember that an “attitude of gratitude” is not one to be reserved solely for the month of November.  Each year, every season and each day provide us with numerous reasons to be thankful.  Our God is always faithful and He continues to bless us despite that we may not recognize or acknowledge his blessings.  Let us always go before Him with hearts of gratitude and thanksgiving.

We will continue throughout the year to gather in person for Sunday School providing no additional, necessary pandemic mandates be set.  This morning’s lesson,” Being Thankful While Riding the Covid Current,” follows this greeting.

I wish you and your family a very blessed week ahead.

Peace, Blessings and Love,

Pastor Schalm

 


 

Sunday School Lesson For Kids:

Jeremiah 1, God calls Jeremiah

INTRO:

Ever since you were small children, you parents have taught you a simple courtesy. When someone gives you something, what two words do you say?

“Thank you.” Those two words are drilled into our heads. We learn the words, “Thank you” almost as fast as we learn, “Mom”, “Dad”, and “No.” Saying, “Thank you” is a common courtesy we extend to everyone, from the people who serve us in restaurants to our grandparents. We expect it when we do something nice for someone else. But how often do we mean it? Is saying thanks just something we do out of habit, or do we really mean it when we say, “Thank you?”

When we stop to think about the things we have been given and the givers of those gifts, we have much to be thankful for, and in the next few weeks, we’ll talk about many of the reasons we have to be thankful - and how we can best show our thanks.

One of the most important things we can be thankful for is the God who created us. God made each one of us unique. He gave us the family he did in the place and time he did for a specific reason. God knew each of us before we were ever born, and he planned for us to be right where we are, right now, so that he could use us to show the world his amazing love.

In today’s scripture, we’re going to meet a man who learned first hand how God makes each one of us for a special purpose. The man’s name was Jeremiah, and he was amazed to discover that God had a special purpose for his life. Jeremiah didn’t believe it at first, but with God’s direction, he became one of the most important men in the Old Testament.

READ JEREMIAH 1

MAIN POINT:

Jeremiah came along at a time in history when God’s chosen people, Israel, had forgotten him. God had saved Israel from slavery. He had given them a land to call their own and protected them from all enemies.  Yet the people rejected God and chose to worship false gods instead.

God had warned the people long ago that he would punish them if they ever forgot him. God needed a man to remind Israel of that warning, someone brave and bold who would share God’s message without fear. God chose Jeremiah for that very reason.

Jeremiah didn’t believe he had it in him to be a prophet, but when the judgment for their sin came, it was Jeremiah who reminded the people why they were being punished and showed them the way they could repent of their sin.

God made each of us for a special purpose, just as he did Jeremiah. We need to thank God for the gifts he’s given us, and we need to use our gifts to show the world God loves us.

DRIVE IT HOME:

When we receive a gift, the first words we say after, “Wow!” and, “Just what I wanted!” should always be thankful. As we discover the gifts God has given us, we need to thank him as well. When we discover a talent we have for something, like music or drama, we can thank God. When we discover a passion we have, something we enjoy doing that serves others, we can thank God as well. God loves to hear our prayers, and he really loves when we are thankful.

But saying thank you isn’t enough. If we say thank you for a gift, and we put it in the closet, what good is that gift to us or anyone else? God wants us to show we are thankful by putting our gifts and talents to use. Those who can sing can sing for God. Those who can act can act for God. Those who have a heart for serving should serve. Those with a talent for leading others and teaching should do what God made them to do. And those who have the gift of encouragement should always be on the lookout for someone who needs a pick me up.

It’s worth pointing out that God doesn’t expect us to wait until we are older to use those gifts. Remember when Jeremiah said, “I’m too young?” God told Jeremiah his age didn’t matter. God can use you, even though you are still kids, to bless others. So don’t put off using your gifts for God. God can use anyone, even kids, to show people he loves them!

God didn’t give us gifts for the simple pleasure of seeing us discover them. He wants to use us to be a part of his plan to bring salvation to the world. Just as God used Jeremiah to warn the people and show them the way back to him. God can use us to invite our friends and others to meet Jesus in person. Let us give thanks to God every day in prayer for the things he has given us. And let us show him how thankful we are by putting those gifts to work so others can give thanks to God as well.

Thanks and glory be to God, who gave us his son and so much more.

 


SMALL GROUP DISCUSSION (K-2ND)

ICEBREAKER:

What’s the best gift you have ever received for your birthday?

MEMORY VERSE ACTIVITY:

1 Chronicles 16:8

Give all the kids a Bible. Then, after you read the verse, give them the reference and see who can find it first in their Bible.

SMALL GROUP GAME/ACTIVITY:

Give all of the kids a spicy cinnamon candy to put on their tongue. How does the candy feel? How do they think it felt when God touched Jeremiah’s mouth?

DISCUSSION QUESTIONS:

Read Jeremiah 1

What did God say to Jeremiah?

What excuses did Jeremiah give when God spoke to him?

How did God answer that excuse?

How did God use Jeremiah to help Israel?

What is one talent or gift God has given you that you are thankful for?

 


 

SMALL GROUP DISCUSSION (3RD-5TH)

ICEBREAKER:

What’s the best gift you have ever received for your birthday?

MEMORY VERSE ACTIVITY:

1 Chronicles 16:8

Give all the kids a Bible. Then, after you read the verse, give them the reference and see who can find it first in their Bible.

SMALL GROUP GAME/ACTIVITY:

Give all of the kids a spicy cinnamon candy to put on their tongue. How does the candy feel? How do they think it felt when God touched Jeremiah’s mouth?

DISCUSSION QUESTIONS:

Read Jeremiah 1

What did God call Jeremiah to do?

What excuses did Jeremiah give when God spoke to him?

How did God answer those excuses?

What is one talent or gift God has given you that you are thankful for?

How can you show God you are thankful by using that gift for him?

SIMPLE PRAYER:

Dear God,

Show us the gifts you have given us so we can be thankful and use them for you.

In Jesus’ name,

Amen

 


 

ACTIVITIES

Children will color attached sheets and decorate a planter and plant seeds

 

coloring page1

 


 

Posted by admin in Christian Education Corner

January 03, 2021 Post

GREETINGS & HAPPY NEW YEAR

 herefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here!”
~2 Corinthians 5:17

 

Greetings!

I hope you and your family had a blessed and Merry Christmas and a Happy and Healthy New Year.  While we may be uncertain as to what awaits us in this New Year, I pray that it will be full of good health, healing, peace and prosperity.

We will begin the New Year, and prayerfully continue throughout the year, to gather in person for Sunday School.  We will kick off the New Year with a lesson and resolution to pray daily.  If your child/ren are unable to attend in person, the morning’s lesson can be found following this greeting.

I wish you and your family a very Blessed “2021.”  I look forward to the return of a full Christian Education activity schedule in the near future.  Until then, let us do our part to keep one another safe and healthy.

Peace, Blessings and Love,

Pastor Schalm

 


 

New Year's Sunday School Lesson For Kids:


BOTTOM LINE: 

Make prayer a priority.

OBJECTIVE: 

Kids will make a New Year's Resolution to pray every day in the coming year.

KEY PASSAGE: 

Luke 11:1-13,    Jesus' Teaching On Prayer

MEMORY VERSE: 

“Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful.” - Colossians 4:2 (NIV)

“Give a lot of time and effort to prayer. Always be watchful and thankful.” - Colossians 4:2 (NIrV)

SUMMARY: 

One small change can make a huge difference in your life. This year, follow Jesus' example and resolve to pray every day and see what amazing things God will do.

OBJECT LESSON:

Cell Phone 

When we love someone – family, friends – what are some ways that we can show them we care?

Let the kids offer suggestions.

Those are all good suggestions. We don't always need a grand gesture to show our love. Just being with someone is all you need sometimes. Spending time with him, talking to him.

Now let's suppose that someone lives on the other side of the world. How can you talk to that person?

Have kids answer. Bring out cell phone.

We live in a time when we have the technology to talk to people halfway across the globe. We can just call them up on our phones and have a chat whenever we want. We can even use Skype and see their face on the screen.

Cell phones have only been around for a few decades and video chat is even newer than that. But when it comes to talking to God, we have always had the necessary technology. It's called prayer. Prayer is just talking with God. We just open our mouths and talk to him – whatever is on our hearts and in our minds. We can tell him what we need, or share the things that have us worried. Or we can just shoot the breeze and enjoy the time with him. And we can listen for what he has to say too.

With cell phones, we can talk anywhere, anytime with our family and friends around the world. With prayer, we can talk to God anywhere and anytime. No special calling plan needed

LARGE GROUP LESSON

INTRO

What comes to mind when you think about the New Year? Maybe you think about New Year's parties. Staying up past midnight on New Year's Eve. Watching on television as the ball drops in Times Square, and all the people counting down: 10, 9, 8. . .

 Many people look at the new year as a new beginning. It's a chance to turn over a new leaf and make some positive changes in your life. That's why some people create a list of New Year's Resolutions. Adults resolve to lose weight and get in shape, to learn a new language, to break a bad habit like smoking, or to travel more.

 Grown ups don't have to be the only ones to make new year's resolutions though. Today, we're going to talk about one great thing you can put on your list to do this year. It's prayer. Prayer is communicating with God. It's our way to stay connected with him. It's one of the most important parts of the Christian life, and it's one of those things most of us – kids and adults – don't do enough.

 But we can change that. This year, let's resolve to pray more. But where do we start? How do we pray? What are we supposed to say to God? How do we do it? Jesus' disciples had those same questions, so one day they asked Jesus to teach them how to pray. Let's find out what Jesus said.

 READ Luke 11:1-13

MAIN POINT

The prayer Jesus gave us is a launching off point for our own communication with God. The prayer starts with, “Father, hallowed be your name.” Hallowed is a fancy word for holy. So we start our prayer be remembering and celebrating who God is. He is our father. He is holy.

 Next is, “your kingdom come.” That's another way of saying, “your will be done.” We might come to God with a long list of things that we want and think we need. But we must always remember that God knows what's going on much better than we do. He knows what is best for us. He knows what will do us good. He wants us to have the best life, and one that honors him. If we say “your kingdom come” we are saying “God I trust that you know what I need and that you love me and will take care of me.”

 Then Jesus said, “Give us this day our daily bread.” What does that mean? Well, this where we ask for the essentials. We need food, water, a place to sleep at night. We might take those things for granted, but there are plenty of people around the world who never know where their next meal is coming from. But it can mean more than that. What do you need this day? Maybe an extra helping of patience? Maybe some strength to get through a tough situation? Perhaps a little courage? By asking for “our daily bread” we are saying, “God give me what I need to make it through this day.”

Next, Jesus told us to seek forgiveness. We have all sinned, done something wrong in the eyes of God. Jesus died for our sins. When we ask for forgiveness in Jesus' name, God is faithful to forgive us.

Jesus reminds us in this prayer that we also must forgive other people. People do mean things to us sometimes. We must forgive them. By forgiving them, we aren't saying, “what you did was okay.” Instead we are saying, “I will not hold a grudge against you.” God loves us despite our sin, and we can be like him and love people who have wronged us.

Finally, we ask that God would lead us not into temptation. Temptation to sin lurks around every corner. We're tempted to cheat when we didn't study for the test. We're tempted to steal when we see no one is looking. We're tempted to badmouth our parents or teachers. The easiest way to overcome temptation is to avoid it altogether. When we pray, we should ask God to lead us away from temptation and lead us toward good and great things.

DRIVE IT HOME:

That's a lot to remember. But don't let it bog you down. Remember it all boils down to this: prayer is talking to God. Talk to him about whatever you want to talk about: your hopes, your fears, your questions, the things you want.

When we talk to God he will listen. And don't forget to listen yourself. Let some of your prayer time be quiet time. Listen for what God wants to say. You may not hear words, but God is talking to you. He speaks into your heart, and into your mind. Ask for the Holy Spirit to guide you into hearing his voice better.

Now back to the New Year's resolutions. In Jesus' prayer, he asked for daily bread, not weekly bread or monthly bread. That means we need to be talking with God every day. Our relationship with God only gets stronger if we spend time with him.

So this year, make a commitment to yourself and to God that you will pray every day. Choose a specific time – first thing in the morning or right before bed or before meals or all of the above. When you think about things to pray about, say them right then or write them down on a piece of paper to remember later. Start a prayer journal where you keep track of the people and things you pray about. Then you can look make weeks and months later and see how God answered all of your prayers.

Let's make daily prayer our New Year's resolution. Let's start a prayer revolution.

 CLOSE WITH A SIMPLE PRAYER

Dear God,

You are the light that shines in the darkness. Thank you for loving us and giving us Jesus.

In Jesus’ name,

Amen

MEMORY VERSE: 

“Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful.” - Colossians 4:2 (NIV)

“Give a lot of time and effort to prayer. Always be watchful and thankful.” - Colossians 4:2 (NIrV)

CRAFT IDEA:

Prayer Journal. Place five sheets of copy paper on a piece of construction paper. Create a book by folding the stack of papers in half, then securing three staples along the crease. The construction paper acts as the cover of the book. Have kids design the front cover of their prayer books.

Encourage kids to write down (or draw, for younger kids) their prayer requests or any other thoughts that come to them during their alone times with God.

SMALL GROUP DISCUSSION (K-2ND)

ICEBREAKER:

Who is your favorite person to talk to?

DISCUSSION QUESTIONS:

Read Luke 11:1-13.

What prompted Jesus to teach about prayer?

What is “daily bread”?

Why are the two aspects of forgiveness in the prayer?

Why is it important to ask God for what we need?

Why do we need to talk to God?

SIMPLE PRAYER:

Dear God,

You tell us to pray for what we need. We need more of you in our lives, God. Be our friend and our guide.

In Jesus’ name,

Amen

SMALL GROUP DISCUSSION (3RD-5TH) 

ICEBREAKER:

Who is your favorite person to talk to?

DISCUSSION QUESTIONS:

Read Luke 11:1-13.

What prompted Jesus to teach about prayer?

What is “daily bread”?

Why are the two aspects of forgiveness in the prayer?

Why is it important to ask God for what we need?

Why do we need to talk to God?

SIMPLE PRAYER:

Dear God,

You tell us to pray for what we need. We need more of you in our lives, God. Be our friend and our guide.

In Jesus’ name,

Amen

 


 

Posted by admin in Christian Education Corner

December 13, 2020 Post

Greetings,

I hope you and your family are staying healthy and well as we inch ever closer to Christmas and to being able to gather again.

Following, you will find the Sunday School lesson to be offered on December 13th via Zoom at Noon. I hope that your child/ren will be able to join us.  If they are unable to join, I hope you take the opportunity to utilize the lesson sometime during the week.  Please do not hesitate to contact me with any questions.

Peace & Blessings,

Pastor Cheryl Schalm

 


 

Sunday School Lesson: An Angel Appears to Mary

 

Teacher Enrichment

If you’re reading through Luke 1, you find that today’s story of the foretelling of Jesus’ birth to Mary interrupts the story of John the Baptist. At the end of today’s story, Mary runs off to visit Elizabeth. After Mary’s song of praise (Luke 1:46-55), the story of the birth of John resumes.

We’re told very little about either Mary or Joseph in this passage. We only know that they were pledged to be married (a pledge that’s more binding than an engagement today), that Mary was a virgin, and that she apparently was chosen to be Jesus’ mother by virtue of being “highly favored” by God. Of all the Jewish men and women of all time, God chose Mary and Joseph to be the earthly guardians of his Son. These were humble, ordinary people who must have had an extraordinary relationship with God. They were willing to be used by God in whatever way he saw fit. And God used them in an extraordinary way!

Use this lesson to help your students see how God uses ordinary people—like them—who are committed to serving him.

Other Scriptures used in this lesson are Matthew 1:18-21 and 1 Thessalonians 5:11.

Teacher’s / Parent’s Prayer

  • Read Acts 4:13.
  • In what ways did God use these ordinary men? What made them different?
  • How willing are you to be used by God in whatever way he sees fit?
  • Pray: Lord, use me. Help me to be the person you want me to be in the lives of my students so that they will…

Welcome

Before class, photocopy the “Will You Risk It?” handout (see the bottom of this post). Cut the assignments apart. Make enough copies so that each child will have an assignment. Put each assignment with one rubber band in a separate envelope. Seal the envelopes.

Say:  You’re invited to take a risk today. You don’t have to take the risk, but if you do you must agree to do whatever the instructions inside the envelope ask you to do. If you take this risk, you may also be rewarded. I have an envelope for each of you. Who wants an envelope?

Have child/ren open their envelopes, complete their assignments, and then give you their rubber bands. As kids turn in their rubber bands, give each one a treat.

Will You Risk It? Debrief

Ask:

  • What thoughts went through your mind when you took an envelope? (I was curious to find out what was inside; I was afraid it might be a trick.)
  • If you took an envelope, why did you decide to take a risk? (I thought it would be fun; I hoped there was a good reward.)
  • If you didn’t take an envelope, why did you decide not to take a risk? (I thought it might not be worth it; I didn’t care if I got a reward.)
  • What other risks do you take sometimes? (Volunteering to do a job for someone; trying to be someone’s friend.)
  • How was this activity like other risks you might take? (You never know exactly how it will turn out; if you don’t take the risk, you might miss the reward.)

Say: In our activity, you had to take a risk before you got a reward. At first, some of the opportunities we have to serve God may seem a little risky to us. But the rewards of doing what God wants us to do can be wonderful. God uses ordinary people like you and me to do important things for him. Today we’ll learn how God used an ordinary young woman to bring his Son into the world.

Bible Exploration

You don’t have to be rich or famous for God to use you. Listen while I read Luke 1:26‑27. This passage tells about Mary, the mother of Jesus.

Read Luke 1:26-27 aloud. Say: Jesus’ mother, Mary, wasn’t very old—possibly a young teenager. Most people didn’t know Mary or her family. But God chose Mary for the special purpose of giving birth to Jesus.

An angel told Mary she would give birth to Jesus. Read Luke 1:28-29 aloud.

When Mary first saw the angel, she was confused and wondered what was going on. Imagine that an angel just appeared to you.

Ask:

  • What’s the first thing you might think if you saw an angel? (I’d be scared; I would wonder if it was a dream.)

Read Luke 1:30-33 aloud. Then ask the class:

  • How do you think Mary might have felt after hearing the angel’s message? (Excited; happy to be chosen; curious about how it would happen; scared.)

Read Luke 1:34-38 aloud.

Ask:

  • Do you think you would have agreed to do what the angel said as Mary did? Explain. (Yes, I’d do what God wanted me to do; no, I might have said, “Let me think this over first.”)
  • Why do you think God chose Mary to be Jesus’ mother? (Because she followed God; because she was nice; God knew she’d make a good mother.)

Read Matthew 1:18-21 aloud. Then ask:

  • Why do you think God chose Joseph to act as Jesus’ father? (Because he was a kind man; because God trusted him.)

Say: God could have chosen someone famous, someone important, or someone wealthy to bring his Son into the world. But he didn’t. Instead, God chose an unknown young woman who was willing to be his servant. God knew Mary would be a wonderful mother for Jesus and that Joseph would be a good earthly father. God didn’t care how famous or important Mary and Joseph were because God uses ordinary people.

Not only did God choose ordinary people to be Jesus’ parents on earth, but God also chooses ordinary people to be Jesus’ spiritual brothers and sisters. That’s right—Jesus was born on earth so that any ordinary person could become a child of God and have a relationship with him. Jesus loves ordinary me and ordinary you!

Say: We’ve already heard how God chose Mary to be the mother of Jesus. But how did Mary react to the news? Let’s look at Luke 1:28-29 again to find out.

Say: In these verses, Mary is confused about why God has chosen her and what the angel’s message might mean. Mary might have felt too young or unimportant for such a special task. Tell us about a time you thought you were too young to have something special happen to you. (My sister said summer camp was really fun, but I was too young to go; my brother gets to drive, but it’ll be zillions of years before I can drive.)

Say: God uses ordinary people, and his choices are often surprising. Let’s find out why. Read 1 Samuel 16:7, “The Lord doesn’t see things the way you see them. People judge by outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.” Then ask:

  • What ideas does this verse give you about why God chose Mary? (Mary was just an ordinary girl, but God knew her heart; she was nothing special, but God can use anyone whose heart is right.)

Say: God uses ordinary people like Mary, and God can use kids, too.

Breaking News Activity

Form teams if possible or have child invent, write and report a news story that could happen to someone their age who wants to make a difference for God.

Have one person on begin with a sentence such as “Today a 9-year-old girl made the news.” Then take turns adding sentences to your story until everyone has had at least one turn to add a sentence. After everyone has contributed to the story, you can agree to change the details if you want. Have the Writer in your group write down the main ideas of the story for the Reporter to present to the class.

Breaking News Debrief

When the “newscast” is over, thank everyone for “tuning in.” Then ask:

  • Do you think the stories you invented could really happen? Why or why not? (No, we just tried to make a good story; yes, people can make a big difference if they try and their hearts are right.)
  • Would you be willing to do something like the characters in your stories did? Explain. (Yes, I’d love to help people in a special way; no, I wouldn’t know what to do; I’m not sure I could do that.)

Say: Like Mary, we may wonder why God would want to use us. We may feel awkward and nervous about doing something like [INSERT: the stories you made up]. But if we’re willing to get involved, God can use us in amazing ways. We know that God uses ordinary people—people like you and me. Let’s explore how God might use ordinary you and me in his plan.

Ordinary People Activity

Have child/ren draw a gingerbread-style person outline on a piece of white paper. Give each child/ren another piece of paper and then have them cut out the person shapes.

Say: God used Mary, an ordinary young woman, to bring Jesus into this world. God uses ordinary people, even ordinary kids, to do great things for him.

You each have an ordinary person—a plain, white paper person. This ordinary paper person represents you, an ordinary person. Go ahead and glue your ordinary paper person to the middle of your piece of paper.

Pause as kids follow instructions. Then say: There you are, an ordinary person in the middle of an interesting world. Let’s add some features to make this ordinary person look more like you. Using any craft supplies you may have, add facial features, hair, clothes, and anything else that would make this ordinary person look more like you.

As kids add their unique features, say: From the minute God created you, you were anything but ordinary. God had plans for the way you would look, act, feel, think, talk, and interact with others. He knows the hairs on your head­—in fact, each one has a number! God made every aspect of you unique.

Give kids time to finish adding their features. Then say: But God has even bigger plans for you than just for your looks, thoughts, and feelings. God wants to use you to do amazing things for him, to encourage others, to help other Christians grow closer to Jesus, and to help people who don’t know Jesus have a relationship with him.

Activity Debrief

Ask:

  • What are some extraordinary ways God can use you in your ordinary life? (God can have me invite non-Christian friends to church; I can encourage people when they’re feeling down.)
  • What is it like knowing that God can use you in amazing ways? (It surprises me; it feels good to know that God is powerful enough to use me.)
  • What are some big things God might be preparing you to do for him in the future? (I might become a pastor; God might be preparing me to go to another country to share about Jesus; God might want me to open a shelter for homeless children.)

Say: On the outside of your person, draw or write ways you can serve God. These can be ordinary ways in your ordinary world, such as at school, with your family and friends, or in your neighborhood. They can also be huge ways to serve God in the future. No one knows exactly how God is going to use him or her, but remember that God can use you in extraordinary ways, so be creative.

Have Children Share What They Wrote or Drew

CLOSE IN PRAYER

 


 

 

Will You Risk It? Handout

Cut on the dotted lines:

——————————————————————————————————-

Your assignment is to tell one person why you’re glad they’re in your family.

Congratulations on taking this risk!

——————————————————————————————————–

Your assignment is to pat one person on the back and give them a big smile.

Congratulations on taking this risk!

——————————————————————————————————–

Your assignment is to say to one person, “It’s a great day to be alive! Gimme five!” and give them each a high five.

Congratulations on taking this risk!

——————————————————————————————————–

Your assignment is to shake hands with one person and say, “It’s a special day, and you’re a special person.”

Congratulations on taking this risk!

 


 

Posted by admin in Christian Education Corner

December 06, 2020 Post

Greetings,

I hope that this week’s blog finds you and your family healthy and well.  While many of our holiday traditions may have to be postponed until next year, let us never forget the “reason for the season.”  It’s because of that reason we can look ahead with great hope and expectation.  While we may have to celebrate a little differently, the cause for the celebration remains the same.

I hope that your child/ren will be able to join us on Zoom at noon for the Sunday School lesson.  If they are unable to do so, the lesson follows.  If you should have any questions please do not hesitate to contact Pastor Schalm.

Peace & Blessings,

Pastor Schalm

 


 

BRINGING THE FRUITS OF THE SPIRIT TO LIFE

Devotion

“Each tree is recognized by its own fruit” (Luke 6:44).

Fortunately, we don’t have to guess what the fruit of a Christian’s life is to be, since Galatians 5:22-25 tells us. When God and others look at our trees—our lives—they should see nothing but “love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.”

Model for your students what it looks like to live by the Spirit, showing and sharing with them the fruit of your life.

Bible Background

Much of Paul’s discussion in the book of Galatians focuses on opposites. He looks at the differences between the gospel of Christ and false gospels, faith and observance of the law, promise and law, freedom and slavery. One pair of opposites that he looks at in detail is living by the flesh (following human desires) and living in the Spirit (following God’s desires). The decision of which way to live makes an impact on all aspects of life. Paul is clear about the results of each way. People who choose to follow the flesh can expect their lives to hold the things that way of life produces. Ultimately, that choice means eternal separation from God.

On the other hand, the choice to follow the Spirit produces very different results for this life and for eternity. The fruit of the Spirit includes different attitudes and actions that become more and more evident in our lives as we follow God’s way. They grow in our lives just as fruit grows on a tree that is properly cared for.

These characteristics of Christians are quite varied. They include such all-encompassing ideas as love, joy, and peace. They deal with our behavior toward others: forbearance, kindness, and gentleness (power under control). And they describe our inner values of goodness, faithfulness, and self-control.

These characteristics identify us with Christ. Paul uses an interesting image when he stresses our need to live by the Spirit. Anyone who has watched a marching band knows how obvious it is if one person is out of step with the others. In the same way, if we are not living the way that the Spirit directs us, that fact will be immediately noticed, and the results can be disastrous.

Opening Activities

Use one or both of these activities when you teach the Fruit of the Spirit for kids. They’ll help students discover who the Holy Spirit is.

Option 1: The Right Guide

Materials: Bibles (optional: blindfolds)

Have students (can use any two people at home) get in pairs. One partner should close his eyes while the other partner snaps his fingers in various locations around his partner. The student with his eyes closed should turn in the direction where he believes the sound is coming from. After a minute, have partners switch roles. Ask kids to tell what they discovered in this experiment.

SAY: I know someone who is the right guide. He helps us to turn and keep going in the right direction. I’m talking about the Holy Spirit.

Ask students (your child/ren)  to turn in their Bibles to Acts 2:38, 39. Have volunteers read those verses aloud. Then have kids turn to John 14:15-18, and have volunteers read those verses aloud.

ASK:

  • Who is promised the gift of the Holy Spirit? (those who repent of their sins and are baptized)
  • What do these verses say about the Holy Spirit? (God sends the Holy Spirit. He’s the Spirit of truth. He’s a counselor. He will be with us forever. We can’t see Him. He lives with us and in us.)

SAY: When we live by the Spirit, we live a certain way. Let’s find out about that.

Option 2: The Best Guide

Materials: paper, crayons, blindfolds, Bibles

Have students pair up. Ask one student in each pair to sit down and put on a blindfold. Put paper and some crayons by each of the seated kids. The other kids should stand behind their partners; those students are the
guides. Guides will tell their partners to draw a simple object, such as a house, tree, or boat. The guides can offer advice about how to draw the objects and suggest what crayons to use. After a few minutes, let kids switch roles.

SAY: Some of you guides were helpful, while others weren’t. But I know someone who is the best guide of all—the Holy Spirit.

Ask students to turn in their Bibles to Acts 2:38, 39. Have volunteers read those verses aloud. Then have kids turn to John 14:15-18, and have volunteers read those verses aloud.

ASK:

  • Who is promised the gift of the Holy Spirit? (those who repent of their sins and are baptized)
  • What do these verses say about the Holy Spirit? (God sends the Holy Spirit. He’s the Spirit of truth. He’s a counselor. He will be with us forever. We can’t see Him. He lives with us and in us.)

SAY: When we live by the Spirit, we live a certain way. Let’s find out about that.

 

Bible Exploration

Ask students to turn in their Bibles to Galatians 1:1, 2. Have volunteers read those verses aloud.

SAY: Listen as I read some of the things Paul wrote to the churches in Galatia. Paul told them how they can live by the Spirit, the Holy Spirit. He contrasts living by the Spirit to living by the flesh, not doing right things and not living for God. (Read Galatians 5:16–26.)

SAY: Let’s say that a guy named Alex becomes a Christian and receives
the gift of the Holy Spirit. Sometimes he tries to live by the Spirit, but
he flips back and forth. Alex has to choose which life he wants to live—live for God or not; live by the Spirit or live by the flesh. The choice is his.

Ask kids to look at verses 19-21 while you read those verses again.

SAY: Did you catch what living by the flesh can look like? Hating others, being jealous and envious, being angry, and having selfish ambition—those are some of the things people might do when they live by the flesh.

Ask kids to look at verses 22 and 23 while you read those verses again.

ASK:

  • What does it look like when you live by the Spirit?

USE THE FOLLOWING VIA THE SCREEN OR PRINT TO HELP CHILDREN UNDERSTAND THE DIFFERENT FRUITS

Fruit of the Spirit activity sheet download

SAY: Let’s see if we can figure out what each fruit of the Spirit is. Work on the page together.

Which fruits of the Spirit do you think you’re doing pretty well with?

  • Which fruits of the Spirit do you need to work on?

SAY: When we live by the Spirit and others look at our lives, they’ll
see nothing but love, joy, peace, forbearance (that’s patience!), kindness,
goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. Now that’s great
living!

Have kids turn in their Bibles to Galatians 5:22-25, and have volunteers read the verses aloud.

“The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law. Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit.”

Galatians 5:22-25

SAY: When we belong to Jesus, the Holy Spirit helps us give up living by the flesh. Now let’s help each other keep in step with the Spirit by memorizing these verses.

Memory Activity: The Fruit of the Spirit for Kids

Materials: Bibles, reusable adhesive, masking tape

Place two long strips of masking tape parallel to each other on the floor, going from wall to wall if possible. Space strips far enough apart so a student can walk on each tape line.

Have kids pair up, and make sure each student has a Bible. Ask a pair to stand, one on each tape line.

SAY: As you step on the tape lines, alternate reading the memory verses out loud to each other. Try to time it so you’ll be done reading the verses by the time you reach the end of the tape lines.

SAY: These verses are really great ones to memorize because they tell us how to live by the Spirit!

Closing Activities

Use these activities when you teach the Fruit of the Spirit for kids to help students understand why it’s important to live by the Spirit and plan to do so.

Option 1: Fruit Groups

Materials: self-stick notes, pencils

Give each kid a self-stick note. SAY: On your notes, write one of these fruits of the Spirit: lovejoy, or peace. Stick it on your forehead. Then get up and find the others who chose the same fruit.

Allow kids with sensory sensitivities to hold the self-stick notes rather than putting them on their foreheads.

When kids are in groups, ask each group to come up with one reason why it’s important to have that particular fruit in their lives. After a short time, let groups share.

Then have kids cross out what they wrote on their notes. SAY: Now write on your notes one of these fruits of the Spirit: forbearancekindness, or goodness. Stick in on your forehead, and find the others who chose the same fruit.

When kids are in groups, ask each group to come up with one reason why it’s important to have that particular fruit in their own lives. After a short time, let groups share.

Then do the same with the last group: faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.

ASK: Why is it important to live by the Spirit? (Be sure to bring out this idea from Galatians 5:21—that if we don’t we won’t inherit the kingdom of God; and this idea from v. 24—that it shows we belong to Jesus. Also, we’ll treat others like we want to be treated, it pleases God, and it’s a great way to live!)

SAY: Let the Holy Spirit be your guide every day. He will help you make the best decisions, and those decisions will always please God.

Option 2: How’s Your Fruit?Fruit of the Spirit activity sheet 2 download

Rate yourself to see how well you think your fruit of the Spirit is doing. Tell kids to take some time to think about this and be honest. Tell them that they won’t be sharing this with anyone.

CLOSE IN PRAYER

Posted by admin in Christian Education Corner

November 29, 2020 Post

For God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control. ~ 2 Timothy 1:7

 

Greetings!

I hope you and your family had a wonderful Thanksgiving.  It is hard to believe that in less than a month we will be celebrating Christmas.  How quickly the days turn into weeks, the weeks into months, and the months into years.  I hope that this advent season, the weeks leading to Christmas allow you time for reflection. And may those reflections fill you with wonder and joy.

I look forward to seeing your child/ren via Zoom at noon on Sunday.  If they are unable to do so, today’s lesson is provided below.  If you should have any questions please do not hesitate to contact me.

Peace, Blessings and Love,

Pastor Schalm

 


 

Building Self-Control

 

Objectives: To define self-control and lack thereof.  To identify tools that the students can use to build self-control.  To develop students who display self-control in their personal lives.  This lesson is geared towards a children’s church classroom setting of 1st -5th graders.

Materials: A game like Jenga or Operation, cardboard bricks or building blocks with words  from Proverbs 25:28 on each brick/block, Proverbs 25:28 written on a white board or construction paper, Bible, gum drops in baggies with toothpicks, paper plates, an example of a gum drop tower


Optional Coloring Page: You can download our free self-control coloring page https://ministry-to-children.com/self-control-lesson-plan/ to use along with this lesson plan. It pictures a young boy throwing a temper tantrum while shopping with his mom. Opposite this scene is another with a young girl patiently walking beside her mother’s cart.

Optional Game Idea: We’ve made a video demonstrating a new game about self-control. We call it Ninja and it has quickly become a favorite with our older children.

Bible Basis: “Like a city whose walls are broken down is a man who lacks self-control.”  – Proverbs 25:28

Anticipatory Set: If you have the game Jenga, utilize it to catch the students’ attention.  If not, use any type of game that requires self -control and slow and careful movements (Operation is another great game to use as an example.)

  1. Select a student to play against.
  2. Begin play while you introduce self-control.  Explain that self-control isn’t easy.  It takes time and wise choices.  It means thinking before you act.
  3. Give an example of self-control.  (Possible examples could include:  speaking kindness towards someone you may not like, not gossiping, not complaining, using your time wisely, making healthy food choices, not hitting someone or getting in fights, etc.)
  4. Have the students brainstorm examples of self-control also.
  5. Share Proverbs 25:28 with the students (using the visual.)  Ask the following questions:  What would happen to a city if its walls were broken down?  (It would be easily attacked by enemies.)  What if we don’t have self-control?  What happens to us?  (We become weak.  Sin destroys us little by little.)
  6. Review some examples of people who lacked self-control in the Bible with a Guess Who Game.
  • Who lacked self-control by eating a piece of fruit, even though God had commanded against it?  (Eve)
  • Who lacked self-control by giving into peer pressure and ate a piece of fruit also?  (Adam)
  • Who lacked self-control by letting jealousy control him and killing his brother Abel?  (Cain)
  • Who lacked self-control by complaining in the wilderness to Moses?  (the Israelites)
  • Who lacked self-control by spending all of his money on wild living?  (the Prodigal son)

Bible Lesson: Matthew 4:1-11:  How Jesus Used Self-Control in the Desert

  1. Ask the students if they have ever gone a meal without food?  A day?  Have them imagine 40.  Tell them that in our story today, Jesus has gone 40 days and 40 nights without food.  Ask them to imagine what Jesus would have felt like.  (Weak, tired, dizzy, confused maybe)
  2. Explain that Satan is going to try to get Jesus to sin.  He tempts Him when He is weak.  He tempts us when we’re weak too.  Ask the students to listen for what Satan asks Jesus to do.  When they hear his temptation, have them put their hands on top of their heads.
  3. Have the students open up their Bibles to Matthew 4:1-11.  Read verses 1-3.  (All hands should be on students’ heads.)  What does Satan ask Jesus to do? (Tell stones to become bread – be relevant.)   Read verse 4 as a choral reading.
  4. Read verses 5-6.  (All hands should be on heads.)  What does Satan ask Jesus to do?  (Throw himself down – be spectacular.)  Read verse 7 as a choral reading.
  5. Read verses 8-9.  (All hands should be on heads.)  What does Satan ask Jesus to do?  (Bow down and worship him – to be powerful.)  Read verse 10 as a choral reading.  Finish with verse 11.  Give Jesus a round of applause for showing self control, even when he was weak, tired, and hungry!
  6. Ask the students what Jesus kept repeating when He responded to Jesus.  (Hopefully the choral reading will help them identify the words, “It is written.”)
  7. Explain that Jesus used scripture to fight Satan.  Jesus knew the Word of God!  Explain that there is no better tool for fighting temptation.  The Word of God will help us all with self-control!

Application: Ask the students to think about the following questions:  Is there an area of your life that needs self-control?  Is it your tongue?  Do you talk about people?  Do you complain?  Do you use language that would hurt the heart of God?  Or maybe you have a hard time keeping your hands to yourself if you’re angry or frustrated about something.   Do you hit, push, or kick?  What about your free time?  Do you spend time with God during the day?  Do you help around the house and do your homework?  Or do you lack self-control and spend too much time on the computer, watching TV, or playing video games?
Tell the students to consider memorizing a verse (like Proverbs 25:28) to help them have self-control.  Since another important tool is prayer, pray for the students that God will grow self-control in them this week.

Memory Verse Game: Ahead of time, tape the words of the memory verse individually on the bricks or blocks available.  Make another set as well, making certain to keep it separate from the first set.

Separate the students into teams and distribute a pile of memory verse blocks to each.

  1. Tell the students that they are to build a tower with their memory verse.  The verse should start on the top and end on the bottom.  (So they will have to figure it out backwards!)  The first team to have their tower completed will win.
  2. Once a winner has been identified, the students are allowed to knock over their towers, shuffle their bricks, and begin building again for a round two.

Self- Control Tower Art Project: Have the students build gum drop towers with toothpicks.

  1. Present your tower example and tell the students that our art project today will utilize self-control and patience.   The students can choose to take their towers home with them to eat or place them in their rooms to remind them to have self-control this week!
  2. Distribute supplies:  paper plates with student names on them, toothpicks, and baggies of gumdrops.
  3. Have the students create their Self-Control Towers!

ALWAYS CLOSE IN PRAYER

 


 

Posted by admin in Christian Education Corner