25 Days of Scriptures & Activities for Christmas

Free calendar and lesson plan with 25 Scriptures and Activities for Christmas!

Merry Christmas! Today I have a new reading schedule for Christmas! This schedule has 25 days with 25 different Scriptures and suggested activities. You can download in a calendar format or as a lesson plan with more detailed instructions . . . or, scroll down, and find the whole thing on this page! (Tip: If you use the calendar, you might want to have your child color in each space as you go to keep track of your progress!)

I hope you are able to use this with your family this Christmas!

Keep serving Jesus!

Cheri

25 Days of Christmas (Advent Calendar pdf)

 

25 Days of Christmas Scriptures & Activities (full instructions pdf)

December 1st:

  • Read John 1:1-5, 14
  • Turn off all the lights in your house. Then plug in your Christmas lights. Notice how the light shines in the darkness – the same way Jesus did and the same way we should! Don’t have your Christmas tree up yet? Light a candle!
  • Sing “Here I am to Worship”
  • Make a Christmas Candle Paper Craft. 

December 2nd:

  • Read Isaiah 11:1, Jeremiah 23:5-6 & Matthew 1:1
  • These verses show us the prophecy that Jesus would be from the line of David – and the fulfillment of that prophecy! Jesus’s earthly parents were both descended from David. David was in his family tree! Use your Christmas tree to explain the idea of a “family tree”. Start at the top of your tree – if David was the top branch of the tree, his son (Solomon) was the branch right under him . . . and so on . . . Go all the way until you get to the bottom of the tree . . . then Jesus came along! He is the most important branch on this tree! The one who holds the whole tree up! Without Jesus, this tree would fall down. Jesus is the foundation of this tree – just like He should be the foundation of our lives!
  • Make a Christmas tree craft for your tree.
  • Eat Christmas tree snack cakes!
  • Check out this fun genealogy song:  

December 3rd:

  • Read Isaiah 7:10-14
  • This is another prophecy about Jesus! According to these verses, Jesus was going to be called Immanuel, which means God with us! Isn’t it amazing to think of God living right among us as a baby? That’s exactly what happened!
  • When people are expecting a baby, they often have a baby shower – a special party to celebrate the fact that a baby is coming. Have a baby shower for Jesus today! Eat cupcakes, drink punch, and celebrate!
  • Go out and buy a new baby shower gift – diapers, an outfit, anything at all! Take this gift to your local Pregnancy Resource Center to be used to help pregnant moms who could use the extra help!
  • Make an Immanuel craft.  

December 4th:

  • Read Luke 1:26-38
  • Mary was chosen to be the earthly mom of Jesus! She wasn’t sure how this was going to happen, but she trusted God and did what He wanted her to do. Who told Mary that she was going to be the mother of Jesus? The angel Gabriel. If you have a nativity scene, act out this passage using your Mary and angel pieces. If you don’t have a nativity scene, you can use dolls, minifigures, or even yourselves!
  • Make an angel craft.  
  • Make an angel snack craft using bugles and pretzels.  

December 5th:

  • Read Matthew 1:18-25
  • Yesterday we read Mary’s story. Here’s Joseph’s! Joseph also did what God told him to do – even though it seemed to go against what he thought he should do at first! He also trusted God. Do you trust God? Are you willing to obey Him no matter what?
  • Joseph was also visited by an angel! Make another angel craft – this one using paint and your child’s handprints! Use handprints for the wings and body and then draw (or glue a circle cut out of paper) for the head. Let your child draw the facial features and anything else he/she wants to add to the picture.
  • Eat angel food cake!

December 6th:

  • Read Isaiah 9:2, 6-7
  • Here is a birth announcement for Jesus – hundreds of years before he was born! Look at the names that are used for Jesus in these verses. Write the names on index cards and hide each card somewhere in your room. Send your child on a “Name of Jesus” search. Each time he/she finds an index card with a name of Jesus on it, stop and talk about what that name means. Play this game as many times as your child wants!
  • Find a fun song for these verses here:  

December 7th:

  • Read Micah 5:2-5
  • Here’s another prophecy – this one telling us where Jesus was going to be born – hundreds of years before his birth! Where does Micah say Jesus will be born? The town of Bethlehem!
  • Make your own little town of Bethlehem using gingerbread houses.  

Use graham crackers, frosting, and candy to make your own little town of Bethlehem

December 8th:

  • Read Luke 2:1-7
  • Here we see the fulfillment of yesterday’s Scripture. Mary and Joseph have to travel to Bethlehem for the census, and while they are there, Jesus is born!
  • Make a baby Jesus snack using string cheese and ham! Cut the string cheese in half and wrap the ham around it . . . just like Mary wrapped baby Jesus in swaddling clothes. Go even further and make a manger out of pretzels and use shoestring potatoes for straw! Put baby Jesus in the manger!

December 9th:

  • Read Luke 2:8-20
  • Make candy cane cookies to remind you of the shepherds’ staffs! Don’t want to make cookies? Eat a candy cane instead!
  • Act this passage of Scripture out using your nativity scene (or anything else you have)

December 10th:

  • Read Luke 2:21-38
  • Jesus is now 8 days old and he is presented at the temple – where he meets two people who have been waiting for the Messiah to be born! How do you think Simeon and Anna felt when they saw Jesus?
  • It was at this time when Jesus was given his name. Make a name of Jesus ornament for your tree! One way you can do this is to cut 5 circles out of different colored construction paper. Put one letter of Jesus’s name on each circle using glitter, stickers, markers, paint, or anything else you have on hand! Punch a hole in each circle and tie them together with ribbon. Hang it on your Christmas tree!

December 11th:

  • Read Psalm 72:8-13
  • Another prophecy! This one prophecies the kings coming to visit Jesus and bringing Him gifts!
  • Have you done any Christmas shopping yet? Wrap some of your presents and put them under the tree!
  • Make a homemade gift for someone who could use some cheering up. Wrap it up and take it to that person!

December 12th:

  • Read Matthew 2:1-12
  • The Magi saw the star and followed that star to find Jesus! Make a star craft for your tree. Cut a star shape out of any type of paper and give your child craft supplies to decorate it. Punch a hole in the top and use ribbon to attach it to the tree!
  • Play “follow the star”. Similar to follow the leader, except one of you is the “star”. You could even make a star and hold that star up as you lead. Have fun following the star to Bethlehem!

December 13th:

  • Read Hosea 11:1, Matthew 2:13-14
  • King Herod did not like the fact that a new king was born and Jesus was in danger! Joseph was warned in a dream, and the family quickly left for Egypt. Find Egypt on a map. Find Bethlehem. Discuss the trip they took to get to safety.
  • Jesus was a King! Make a crown ornament for you tree. Trace the shape of a crown on hard paper, cut it out and let your child decorate it. Use ribbon to attach it to the tree.

December 14th:

  • Read Jeremiah 31:15, Matthew 2:16-18
  • This is a very sad passage of Scripture, but it is part of what happened when Jesus came to earth as a baby. Talk with your child about the terrible things that happened because of Herod’s hatred towards Jesus. Herod did not value human life at all – and today, many people still do not value human life. But we know that every life is precious because every person was made in the image of God.
  • Spend time today praying for people to realize that every life is precious!

December 15th:

  • Read Luke 2:39-40
  • Now they are living in Nazareth, where Jesus grew up. Jesus grew up . . . just like you are growing up. Talk about some of the things that Jesus may have done as a child. What things are similar to what you do? What things are different?
  • What do you think it was like to be the brother or sister of Jesus? Mary and Joseph had other kids after Jesus was born . . . can you imagine having Jesus as a big brother? Help your child write (or draw) what that would have been like.

December 16th:

  • Read Philippians 2:5-11
  • Jesus humbled himself – he became like a servant – and we need to be servants, too! What are some ways that you can serve the people around you? Look for ways to be a servant today.
  • Someday every knee is going to bow and every tongue is going to confess that Jesus is Lord! Eat fruit roll ups today (let the fruit roll ups remind you of tongues!)

December 17th:

  • Read Matthew 26:47-56
  • Now we are getting to the reason Jesus came to earth. He came to die for our sins! This passage talks about what happened when Jesus was arrested.
  • Judas betrayed Jesus with a kiss. Make a snack using pretzels, Hershey kisses, and red and green m&ms. Put one kiss in the center of each pretzel. Cook them in an oven (350 degrees) for 3 minutes. Place an m&m on each kiss and push it down. Let it cool. Now you have a Christmas snack you can eat that can also remind you of the night Jesus was betrayed.

December 18th:

  • Read Matthew 27:33-54
  • Make a cross ornament for your Christmas tree
  • Use pretzel rods to make a cross snack! Melt chocolate chips (or white chocolate) and dip the pretzel rods in the melted chocolate first. Then add sprinkles. Let it harden and then eat your snack.

December 19th:

  • Read Matthew 27:57-66
  • Jesus died on that cross and then he was placed in a tomb. A rock was placed in front of the tomb. Paint a rock today. Add it to your Christmas decorations.
  • Use playdough to make a tomb. Put your painted rock in front of it. Leave it there overnight.

December 20:

  • Read Matthew 28:1-10
  • Yay! Jesus is alive! Have a race to see who can get to Jesus’s tomb first . . . designate a place as the tomb and have races to see who can get there first!
  • Make empty tomb crescent roll snacks. Roll a marshmallow in sugar and cinnamon, place the marshmallow inside a crescent roll, cook the crescent roll according to package instructions. When you take it out of the oven, the marshmallow should be gone!

December 21st:

  • Read John 20:19-31
  • Make a wreath showing the life of Christ! Use a paper plate, ribbon, and muffin tins. Cut out the center of the paper plate. On the muffin tins, draw a different scene from Jesus’s life. Some things to include could be his birth, the shepherds and angels, the wise men, his crucifixion, and an empty tomb. Glue the muffin tins around the outside of the paper plate. Put a bow on the top and you now have your own wreath!
  • Find some nails. Tie them together with ribbon and hang them on your tree to remind you of Jesus’s sacrifice.

December 22nd:

  • Read Acts 1:1-9
  • Jesus wants us to be his witnesses to the whole world! Make a world ornament today. Use a plain glass or plastic ornament, a map of the world, and mod podge. Cut several circles out of your map of the world and then mod podge them onto the ornament. If you’d like, add a cross over the map to remind you to take the Gospel into the whole world. Tie a ribbon through the top and add this to your tree.
  • Going into the whole world starts with your own neighborhood! Make Christmas Cookies and pass them out to your neighbors. Add a homemade card with a Bible verse or an invitation to come to church with you. Deliver them to your neighbors!

December 23rd:

  • Read Romans 5:6-11
  • Jesus died for you! Make a beaded ornament to remind you of what Jesus did for us! Use a pipe cleaner and add beads for the following colors: Black: sin, Red: the blood of Jesus, Blue: Baptism, White: Jesus cleanses us from our sins, Green: growing in Jesus, Yellow: the promise of heaven. Do those colors in the same order over and over until the pipe cleaner is filled. Shape it to be a circle (wreath) and attach it together. Add a ribbon and tie it on the tree.
  • Make a photo ornament craft.  

December 24th:

  • Read Acts 2:37-47
  • Make church window cookies to remind you of the importance of meeting together as a church! Melt one bag (or more) of chocolate chips in a pan on the stove. Allow it to cool a little and then add an equal amount of bags of mini colored marshmallows. Mix it together. Then split the mixture up into rolls on waxed paper and put them in the refrigerator to harden (at least 24 hours). Take them out, unwrap them, and slice them and you have yummy church window cookies!
  • Buy presents and take them to someone who is in need!

December 25th:

  • Read John 3:16-17
  • Spend time today thanking Jesus for his gift to us!
  • Merry Christmas!!

_______________

Looking for a great Christmas gift for your kids this year? Check out this fun devotional!

brothers-feet4

Looking for some fun — yet challenging — lessons for your kids? Try this one:

Bold_ A 10 Week Study for Churches and Families

Homeschool Lesson Over Acts 3-4:12

A free week’s worth of lessons from “The Book of Acts: A Hands-on Homeschool Curriculum!”

Guess what? I just updated my Acts Hands-on Homeschool Bible Curriculum! I am super excited about the new look — and especially the updated worksheets that go with many of the lessons! I want you to have the opportunity to see what this curriculum is like — so here is a week’s worth of lessons taken directly from The Book of Acts:A Hands-on Homeschool Curriculum. Enjoy!

Cheri

Acts  lesson over Acts 3-4:12 (pdf)

 

Sample Lesson 

Memory Verse: Acts 4:12

Day One

Needed: Bible, journal, Stuffed animals, action figures or other toys, box that can be made into a temple gate

Read Acts 3:1-11 with your student. Say: Now you are going to have the opportunity to make your own dramatic production of this Bible event.

Have your student choose three toys to represent each of the characters. Also have him make his own scenery out of cardboard boxes, paper, or other objects that you have around the house. When he has designed his “set”, have him act out the event using the toys he has chosen. Encourage him to be as creative as possible. If you are able, record his final project so that he can watch himself.

When the project is finished, ask the following questions:

  • Where were Peter and John headed? Prayer service at the temple

  • Who was at the temple gate? A man who had been lame from birth

  • What did he ask Peter and John? To give him money

  • What did Peter reply? I don’t have money, but what I have I will give to you. In the name of Jesus of Nazareth, walk.

  • What did the man do? He went walking and jumping and praising God.

  • How did the people respond? They were amazed.

  • What can we learn from this? Answers will vary, but may include: nothing is impossible with God, God can help anyone no matter how long they have had a problem, God can use ordinary people to do His work.

Have your student write this week’s memory verse in his journal as copywork.

Spend time memorizing the verses with your student. Spend time in prayer together.

Day Two

Needed: Bible, Journal

Have your student begin today’s lesson by performing his play from yesterday over Acts 3:1-11. Then

Read Acts 3:12-26 with your student. Ask: What did Peter take this opportunity to do? tell about Jesus. Say: Notice that Peter took every opportunity he could to tell others about Christ. The Old Testament is a prophecy about Jesus. The entire Bible points to Jesus. However, the Jews did not want to believe that Jesus was the actual fulfillment of the Old Testament prophecies. Why do you think this is the case? Allow your student to answer.

Read Matthew 28:11-15. Say: The Jewish leaders wanted lies spread about Jesus. These lies are still spread today. There are many Jews who are still waiting for a Messiah. They still follow the Old Testament laws (over 600 of them!) and they refuse to believe that Jesus was the Messiah. In fact, they believe that the idea that the Messiah would be a sinless sacrifice to save mankind is wrong. Instead, they believe the Messiah will be a political leader who will restore the temple and the Jewish nation. Furthermore, they believe many lies about Jesus himself. (For an example of many of the lies they believe about Jesus, see the Jews for Judaism website, www.jewsforjudaism.org ),

Have your student choose one of the following Journal prompts to write as a journal entry for today. Give him 5-10 minutes to respond to the journal prompt he chooses and then have him share his response with you. Once he has shared, spend time praying for Jews today.

Journal Prompts:

1. Pretend you were one of the soldiers guarding Jesus’ tomb. Write your account of what happened the day of his resurrection. Be sure to include the response of the Jewish leaders and how you feel about their response.

2. If you could talk to a Jew, what would you want to tell them about Jesus? Write a letter sharing what you think they should know.

3. Search the Old Testament for as many of the rules as you can find. Write these down in your journal. Make a big X over all the rules and write, “We are saved by GRACE through JESUS CHRIST!!” Write a letter to Jesus thanking him for his free gift of salvation.

Day Three

Needed: Bible, Journal, Optional: Stories of martyrs, posterboard and art supplies

Review the last lesson. Say: Remember how the Jews didn’t want to believe? Well, let’s look at what happens next.

Read Acts 4:1-4. Say: The Saduccees didn’t believe in any resurrection at all, so they were really upset when they heard what Peter said. Now Peter and John have been put in prison because of their belief in Jesus. Let’s see what Peter has to say about the this.

Read 1 Peter 4:12-19. Say: Peter tells us that it is not unusual to suffer for believing in Jesus. What are some ways people today suffer for believing in Jesus? Allow your student an opportunity to respond. Accept any answer, but be sure to stress that there are people today who are still put in prison, persecuted and sometimes even killed for their belief in Jesus.

If you have a book about martyrs, read some of the stories of persecuted Christians together. You may also choose to visit the Voice of the Martyrs website at www.persecution.com for modern day stories. They also have a children’s website, www.kidsofcourage.com, that gives several ideas of ways your student can get involved in helping the persecuted church.

Say: It is important that we are 100% sold out for Jesus. We should not be afraid of suffering for Jesus; instead, we should count it as an honor. Often, we are afraid of being teased or called names because we are Christians. However, there are people even today who suffer much greater persecution for their faith.

Have your student make a poster challenging others to stand up for Jesus. If it is possible, have your student hang that poster on a bulletin board at church or share it with a Sunday School class.

Spend time praying for the persecuted church and also for the courage to stand for Jesus no matter what.

Day Four

Needed: Bible, journal, blocks

Give your student a pile of blocks. Tell him he needs to build a pyramid as tall as he can with all the blocks he is given. The pyramid must not fall over for at least 30 seconds. Once the pyramid is built, check it to see if it can stand for 30 seconds. Discuss what it took to make a strong pyramid. Stress that the strength of the pyramid depended on the bottom row, or the foundation. If the foundation was strong, the rest of the pyramid was able to stay together. Optional: If you have multiple kids, have them try to make their own human pyramid.

Read Acts 4:5-12. Say: Our foundation needs to be Jesus. Jesus is what our faith is built upon. If Jesus is our foundation, our life will stay strong even in the hardest of times.

Read 1 Peter 2:4-10. Ask: Do you know what a cornerstone is? Allow your student an opportunity to answer. Say: The cornerstone is that part of the building that keeps all the rest in place. If our lives are built on a solid foundation, we will not fall away. The only solid foundation we can have is Jesus.

Read Matthew 7:24-27. Say: Once again, our foundation needs to be Jesus.

If we are wise, we will build our entire life upon Jesus. What are some things that might come against us to try to get us to collapse?

Have your student make a list in his journal of those things that might come against us and try to destroy our faith. Discuss the list with him. Discuss what he can do in each situation to stay strong for Jesus. Spend time praying with him.

Day Five

Needed: Bible, Journal, Cult awareness worksheet (located in the pdf for this lesson)

Read Acts 4:12. Recite it together several times. Say: This verse is vital to the Christian faith. Many people try to tell you there’s a different way to get to heaven and try to lead you astray. That is why it is important to have Jesus as your foundation and to be grounded in the word of God. Otherwise, you may be led astray. You can remember how cults try to lead others astray by remembering your math lessons. There are four primary ways that cults try to lead us astray. They are through addition, subtraction, multiplication and division. Let’s look at each one of these in greater detail.

1. Addition – Cults try to add to the Bible or provide other books besides the Bible. Read Revelation 22:18-19.

2. Subtraction – Cults subtract from who Jesus Christ is. They say he’s less than who he is by claiming that he is just another prophet or good teacher. Read John 1:1-3 and John 14:8-11.

3. Multiplication – Cults try to multiply the requirements for salvation. Read Acts 4:12.

4. Division – Cults try to divide loyalty between God and man. They try to make you follow what another person says.

Read Acts 4:19. (Note: Discuss how we need to submit to authorities, but when someone tells you to do something contrary to scripture, you need to obey the Bible!) After discussing these patterns of the cults, give the cult awareness worksheet. Have your student tell what pattern each statement is following and then have him respond using the scriptures talked about. When he has finished the worksheet, spend time praying together.

 Extended Activities for Lesson Four

Language Arts

. Compare and Contrast Judaism and Christianity. Use a Venn Diagram or other organizational tool to compare the two. Discuss how, though there may be some similarities, there is one major difference that makes all the difference in the world. Discuss how that difference, belief in Jesus as the Messiah, means that those who practice Judaism are still lost and in need of a savior.

. Choose a cult and do a report on it.

History/Geography

. Choose a martyr and do a report on his/her life and death.

. Find pictures of what the temple gate may have looked like. Make a model of the temple gate.

Math

. Find 3:00 in the afternoon on a clock.

. Look at your clock right now. How long will it be until (or has it been since) 3:00 in the afternoon?

. Do a variety of addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division problems. Discuss the patterns of the cults as you do these problems.

Science

. Build a house out of different types of food. Decide what types of food you want to use (examples include pretzels, frosting, marshmallows, chopped fruit or vegetables). Try to make the strongest, yet edible, house you can. Decide which type of food would make the best foundation. Eat your creation.

Preschool Pointer

. Build a house out of sand. Then build a house out of rocks. Take a bucket of water and pour it over both houses. Which one stood? Which type of house would you want to live in? Why? Discuss how Jesus can help us stand during storms.

. Act out Acts 3:1-11 using sock puppets.

Act On It

. Volunteer at a local homeless shelter or take some food to a food pantry.

. Check out the Voice of the Martyrs website (www.persecution.com) for some ideas on how you can get involved in helping the persecuted church. Do one of their activities as a family.

_______________________

Purchase the Acts Curriculum HERE.

Bold Faith: A Lesson over Matthew 8:5-13

Free Lesson over bold faith from Bold: A 10 Week Study for Families and Churches. Includes ideas for games, crafts, snacks, a Bible lesson, a Bold Believer Biography and more!

I would like to introduce you to my new 10 week Bible curriculum for families and churches. This study is called Bold:A 10 Week Study for Families and Churches, and it is based off the Bible Reading Plan for Summer 2017. Each lesson contains an opening skit and activities, a strong Biblically solid lesson, a Bold Believer Biography, and additional activities to reinforce the lesson. Topics covered include bold love, bold faith, bold service, bold giving, bold prayer, bold actions, and more. Bold biographies include such heroes of the faith as George Mueller, Hudson Taylor, C.T. Studd, Martin Luther, William Wilberforce, and Brother Andrew.

Following is a free sample lesson from this study for you to use with the kids in your life! I hope you enjoy it . . . and that you will consider purchasing the entire study. Thank you!

Cheri

Purchase Printable PDF

Purchase from Amazon

 

Bold Faith(1)

Lesson Two – Bold Faith

Opening Skit:

(Scene opens with the Leader standing on stage. Adult comes hobbling in, dressed like an “old” person . . . white hair, shawl around shoulders, glasses down on the nose, walking with a cane.)

Leader: Welcome to week two of our BE BOLD series!

Adult: (hobbling in, talking like an “old person”) Wait for me! I’m here! I’m coming!

Leader: What in the world? What are you doing?

Adult: I’m here for the Be OLD series! It took me awhile, but I got myself all dressed up and I am ready to Be OLD with you!

Leader: Be old with me? What are you talking about?

Adult: The series we’re doing with the young’uns! Be OLD! Now, I admit, I thought it was kinda strange at first, but I guess I can see the value in it. After all, there are a lot of OLD people in the Bible. Who are we going to learn about first?

Leader: We’re not going to learn about the old people of the Bible! Our theme is not Be OLD, it’s Be . . .

Adult: Eh? What was that? Can you speak a little louder and clearer? I’m having trouble hearing you today.

Leader: I said, “Our theme is not be OLD, it’s BE . . .

Adult: Now, wait a minute you young whipper-snapper. I don’t quite appreciate the tone you are using with me. Back in my day, if a young-un talked to his elder that way, he’d be . . .

Leader: His elder? You’re not my elder! And what’s with this crazy outfit, the theme is not be OLD, it’s Be . . .

Adult: (Straightening up and talking in his normal voice) Come on, I worked really hard putting all this together to follow our theme of Be OLD! Some of us have to work harder than others to fit in with this theme!

Leader: (speaking very deliberately and loudly) Ok. Listen to me. Listen very carefully. Our theme is not BE OLD, it’s BE BOLD. BOLD! B . . B . . B . .

Leader & Adult: Bold

Leader: Yes BOLD!

Adult: Oh.

Leader: Now, why don’t you go change out of that crazy outfit you have on and join us for the rest of the day. I’m sure I can find something for you to do.

Adult: Okay. I’ll go change out of this. But what about you?

Leader: What do you mean “what about me”?

Adult: Aren’t you going to change out of your outfit, too? After all, the theme isn’t BE OLD, it’s BE BOLD? (short pause) Oh, I forgot, you can’t change out of your outfit! That’s your natural look!

(Adult 1 runs off the stage while Leader 1 chases after saying something like, “Why

you . . . “

Another adult should come forward and lead the kids in “Be Bold, Be Strong” (or whatever song you are using as a theme song) at this point.

Opening Activities:

1. Have an obstacle course relay race with your group. Beforehand, make a fun obstacle course for the kids to attempt. At the end of the obstacle course, have an item that they have to touch. (The item will represent Jesus). Then divide your kids into teams and have a race to see which team can get through the obstacle course first (with each member running through the obstacle course and touching “Jesus” at the end.)

Say: In this game, there were several obstacles you had to go through to get to Jesus. It would have been easy to have gotten discouraged and to have given up. Sometimes there are obstacles in our life, too, but we need to keep going . . . to push through those obstacles and to reach out to Jesus. We need to have BOLD FAITH!

2. Today’s lesson will be looking at the faith of the Roman Centurion who asked Jesus to heal his servant who was paralyzed. Give the kids an opportunity to think about the challenges a paralyzed person would face through the following (very messy) activity:

Choose a few kids or adult volunteers to come up front and try this activity or, if time and space allows, let all the kids try. Have the volunteers stand in front of a table with their arms behind their backs. Say: You are going to have an opportunity to have a special treat today – a banana split – but there is one important rule you have to follow. You must keep your hands behind your back at all times, and the only part of your body that you can use to make and eat your banana split is your neck on up.

Place the following items in front of your volunteers: a small bowl of vanilla ice cream, a banana (still in the peel), a small cup of chocolate syrup and a small cup of sprinkles. When you give the signal, each volunteer must open the banana, put it in the cup of ice cream, add chocolate syrup and sprinkles and then eat the snack.

Make sure you have a camera ready to record this activity!

When the volunteers finish (or when you decide to end the activity) use the following questions to aid your discussion:

  • What was the hardest part about this activity?

  • What do you think it would be like if you could only use your neck and above for every activity you had to do?

  • What would be the biggest challenges you would face?

Say: Today’s Bible lesson is about a person who was paralyzed – that means he couldn’t move all of his body. It’s quite possible that he was only able to move his neck and head. Life would have been very tough on him . . . but we are also going to learn how someone’s BOLD FAITH changed everything in this person’s life!

3. Object Lesson: Beforehand, squeeze the juice of half a lemon into a bowl. Add a few drops of water and stir it together. Dip a cotton swab into the mixture and then use it to write the word “Faith” on a white piece of paper. Set the paper aside and make sure it dries completely before you use it with the kids.

Take out several pieces of white paper, the one with the secret message included. Say: What would you say if I said that there was a secret message on one of these papers? Would you believe me? Discuss. Say: Well, you are just going to have to believe me when I tell you that one of these papers has a secret message on it. In fact, the secret message is on THIS one! (hold up the paper with the word on it). Do you believe me?

Sometimes we have to believe things that we can’t always see. When I flip on the light switch, I have to believe that the light will turn on, even though I can’t see the electricity itself. Choosing to believe in something that you can’t see is called FAITH, and today we are going to talk about what it means to have BOLD faith.

Hold the piece of paper over a flame or candle (be very careful not to burn the paper) until the message reappears. As the lemon juice warms up, it should show the word. As this is happening, say: God wants us to have faith in Him . . . a faith so strong that we are willing to do anything for Him and that we trust Him with everything. When things around us start to heat up and get difficult, our faith shines through. Show the word on the paper: FAITH. Today we are going to talk about what it means to have BOLD FAITH.

The Lesson:

Beforehand, prepare a “centurion helmet” and gather a bunch of post-it-notes and pens.

Hold the centurion helmet up in front of the group. Say: This is a helmet that I want you to imagine was worn by a Roman Centurion from long ago. This centurion was in charge of many people. He made sure that his group was ready to do whatever was expected at a moment’s notice. Each person in his group knew that they must obey what he told them to do. If he said to “jump” everyone in his group would jump. If he said “spin around in a circle” everyone in his group would spin in a circle. He was in charge and, if you were in his group, you had better do what he said!

How well do you think you could obey a Roman Centurion? Let’s play a little game to find out. Play a quick game of “Centurion Says”. Whenever you say “Centurion Says” the kids have to do what you say. If you give them a command without saying “Centurion Says”, they should not obey. Wear the helmet while you are pretending to be the centurion. You might also choose to let a couple of the kids take a turn being the centurion as well. Whoever is wearing the helmet is the centurion and must be obeyed!

When you are finished playing the game, have all the kids sit down. Say: You did a great job playing this game. Now, let’s see if you can listen well and do what I say during the rest of this lesson. Every time I say, “Centurion says” followed by an instruction, you have to do what I tell you to do. Do you think you can do that? Great! Let’s start the lesson.

Today’s lesson is about one particular Roman Centurion and how he showed BOLD FAITH!

This centurion, like other centurions, was in charge of a lot of men. One of the men he was in charge of was very sick. In fact, the Bible says that this man was paralyzed. That means that he could not move! Centurion says “put your arms straight by your side and sit perfectly still – don’t move!”

The centurion in today’s lesson heard about a man named Jesus. He heard that Jesus could heal people – that he made sick people well and lame people walk again. He knew that if he could get to Jesus, Jesus could heal his servant! So, the Centurion walked to where Jesus was. Centurion says “move your legs up and down like you are walking”.

When the centurion saw Jesus, he said, “Lord, my servant is lying paralyzed at home, fearfully tormented.” Jesus said to him, “I will come and heal him”. Jesus was willing to go to the Centurion’s house and heal his servant! That’s great news! Centurion says, “Clap your hands and cheer”.

But do you know what the Centurion did next? The centurion said, “Lord, I am not worthy for You to come under my roof, but just say the word, and my servant will be healed. For I also am a man under authority, with soldiers under me; and I say to this one, ‘Go!’ and he goes, and to another, ‘Come!’ and he comes, and to my slave, ‘Do this!’ and he does it!” The centurion knew that all Jesus had to do was say the word and his servant would be healed! The centurion had BOLD FAITH!

Jesus was very pleased with the centurion’s faith. In fact, Jesus said that the centurion had greater faith than anyone he had seen in Israel! Then Jesus told the centurion to go back home and his servant would be healed. Centurion says, “Move your legs up and down like you are running really fast. Faster! Faster!”

When the centurion got home, he discovered that his servant was completely healed! The centurion had BOLD FAITH and Jesus rewarded that BOLD FAITH by healing his servant!

We need to have BOLD FAITH, too! We need to trust God no matter what! Are there areas where it is hard for you to have faith? Do you need to ask Jesus to give you faith like the centurion in today’s lesson?

Give each child a post-it note and a pen. Have them write one area where they need to have bold faith. Encourage them to write it in one word. (Examples include the following: home, school, money, food, doctor, etc). When the kids have written their one word that represents where they need BOLD FAITH have them bring the post-it notes up front and stick them on the helmet. Spend a few moments praying for the kids using the words that they wrote as a guide.

Bold Believer Biography:

Today’s bold believer biography is about George Mueller. Use the video “Bold Faith: The Incredible Story of George Mueller (for kids) by Cheri Gamble found here:  

or use the following narration to tell the story yourself.

(Beforehand, gather some bread or rolls and cartons of milk. Keep them hidden until needed in the story.)

Say: When I think of someone who had BOLD FAITH, I think of a man named George Mueller. George grew up in Germany in the early 1800s, and he wasn’t really a very nice kid. He would steal from people – he even stole from his own parents – and he liked to make fun of Christians.

One day, he went to a Bible study. The reason he went was to make fun of the Christians, but God had other plans for him. The words he heard at that Bible study changed his life, and he became a brand new person! He was 100% on fire for Jesus!

God used George in amazing ways, but what we are going to look at today is the BOLD FAITH that George had! George and his wife ended up opening up an orphanage for children who had no parents. George trusted God to provide for everything they needed. He never asked people for money to help run the

orphanage . . . he simply took everything to God in prayer and trusted God to provide.

One day, the orphanage was completely out of food. The kids were hungry, but there was nothing to feed them! George had all the kids sit at the dining room table and then he prayed, thanking God for the food He was about to provide. The thing is – there was NO FOOD in sight! What would they do?

Well, guess what happened next? There was a knock on the door. When George opened the door, he saw the town baker standing at the door with a basket of bread. (take out the bread). The baker told George that he had woken up in the middle of the night feeling that he needed to bake some bread for George and the orphans! He baked the bread at 2 in the morning and brought the bread to the orphanage right when it was needed!

The story doesn’t end there. A short time later, there was another knock on the door. The milkman’s truck had broken down right in front of the orphanage! It was going to take awhile for the truck to get fixed, and all the milk would be spoiled by the time the truck was ready to go! The milkman offered all that milk to the orphans! What an amazing answer to prayer! (take out the milk.)

George Mueller had BOLD FAITH! He trusted God with every detail of his life, and God took care of him! God will take care of you, too! Will YOU have bold faith?

Optional: pass out the bread and milk as a snack for the kids to eat while they watch the video mentioned below.

A fun video to help tell this story is found here:

  

 

Additional Activities:

1. Make an “invisible ink” painting. Have the kids make their own invisible ink using baking soda and water. Then have them draw a design using this invisible ink on white paper and set the paper aside. Later in the day, after the paper has had time to dry, pass out the white paper (make sure everyone gets a different paper from the one they made). Give the kids grape juice concentrate and have them paint over the paper to reveal the secret message. Remind the kids that, even though we can’t see God, we need to have faith that He is there and that He will take care of us!

2. Make homemade bread and/or milk shakes to remind the kids of the BOLD FAITH of George Mueller.

3. Have the kids make centurion helmets of their own. Find a template here:  

4. The Bible tells us that we should not worry about anything because God will take care of us . . . we are worth more than the sparrows and He takes care of them! Do a craft that will tie in the BOLD FAITH of George Mueller and also remind the kids that they are worth more than the sparrows! Help the kids make bird feeders out of old milk jugs! Find instructions at the following sites: 

5. Teach the kids the song “His Eye is on the Sparrow” and sing it together!

_________________________________

bold 2

A Bible Lesson on the Value of Human Life

A Bible lesson that can be used with teens to teach the value of all life.

  • Find a Bible Lesson on the value of life for younger children here.

It was my turn to teach our middle school class today at church. I have been wanting to get into some deeper topics with them for awhile, and recent events gave me an even stronger desire to address this topic with them.  This was not a “fluff” Bible lesson.  The lesson was tough and to the point, but I felt that it really needed to be done. Our kids are bombarded every single day with the message that not all life has value and they need to be taught the Truth.

 Warning: This is not a normal Cheri Gamble lesson. There aren’t games, object lessons, crafts and snacks. This is simply an outline of what I did with my kids today with the hope that some of you who aren’t sure how to address this issue (but you know that it needs to be addressed) can use it.  (Oh, and I did throw in one game at the beginning for those of you who would like to start off with something a bit lighter.)

I hope you can use this, and remember . . . . EVERY LIFE really does matter . . . including the life of the baby in the womb.

a-bible-lesson-on-the-value-of-life

The value of Life

A Bible Lesson

Opening Activity: Play a game of “Human ring toss” with your group. Place part of your group in certain locations (kind of like “bowling pins”) away from the others. Give each kid a point value. For example, kids in the back row might be worth 10 points, while kids in the front are only worth 1 point. For the first round, make sure all the point values make sense. Let the rest of your group take turns tossing hula hoops with the object of trying to “catch” the others. (The others should not move out of their positions) Keep track of how many points they make. Switch sides and let the kids who were the “pins” have a chance to toss the hula hoops. The team with the most points at the end wins the game.

Optional: Play another round, mixing the points up and keeping the point values a secret.

Say: In this game, every person had a different value. Sometimes, we try to “assign” a value to people. We say that some people have more value than others, or that some have no value at all. Today we are going to look at what the Bible says about the value of human life.

Bible Lesson:

I. Opening Discussion.

A. What gives something value? After you have had a discussion about this, say: There are two things that give an object value. They are:

1) Who made it: For example, a painting by Van Gogh would have much more value than a painting by ME!!!

2) How much someone is willing to pay for it.

B. Knowing that, let’s take a look at human life. Who made us?

1) Look up and read Genesis 1:26-27.

2) According to these verses, God created us. God is the one who made us.

There is no one better than God, therefore we have INCREDIBLE value!

C. What price was paid for us?

1) Look up and read Romans 5:8, 1 Corinthians 3:16-17 and 1 Corinthians 6:19-20.

2) According to these verses, the price paid for us was CHRIST himself! Jesus willingly died for us. That is the ultimate price . . . therefore we truly do have

INCREDIBLE VALUE.

So, our lives have value because God Created us and Jesus died for us, but what exactly constitutes life? Are there different degrees of value . . . like in the game we played earlier? Is one person’s life worth more than someone else’s? Are there different “degrees” of life? (Discuss)

II. When does life begin? (After discussing this question, ask if anyone can think of any Scripture that supports life beginning in the womb.)

A. Read Psalm 139:13-16. These verses say that we were “knit together’ by our creator while still in the womb.

B. Read Genesis 25:21-23. These verses tell the story of Jacob and Esau, twins who actually showed “sibling rivalry” while in the womb!

C. Read Luke 1:41-42. These verses show the reaction of baby John (while still in the womb) to his first meeting with baby Jesus (who was also still in the womb).

D. Read Exodus 21:22-25. This is an old testament law regarding the unborn in which it is clear that the unborn baby is considered a valuable life.

NOTE: If you remove God from the picture, you remove the VALUE of human life! If there is no God, life has no value. Removing God has HUGE implications for the value of life . . . which is one reason that the teaching of evolution is such a big deal. If we are taught from a young age that evolution is true, then we also begin to believe that there is no God, life has no value, and the baby in the womb is nothing more than a mass of tissue.

III. The attack on God’s people has involved killing babies in the past. Ask if anyone can give an example of this.

A. Pharaoh: The Israelite babies when Pharaoh ordered that all the baby boys were to be killed.

B. Herod – When he learned that baby Jesus had been born, he sent his soldiers to kill all babies age 2 and under in an effort to get rid of the new king.

But someone might say, “That’s different. In those cases, the people had no choice. Their babies were forcibly taken from them. In abortion, the woman has a choice. She should be allowed that choice.”

Let me ask this question: “Is something less valuable just because it is not wanted?”

And one more question, “Is anything ever truly NOT wanted?” Read John 3:16. God loves EVERYONE. God, the creator, made EVERYONE and loves EVERYONE. Everyone has value . . . from the unborn baby to the 90 year old with dementia. God wants EVERYONE to come to know Him. Jesus died for EVERYONE. Therefore EVERYONE has value.

IV. What does this mean for us?

A. How should this impact the way we treat others?

1. We need to treat everyone as valuable – even if we disagree with them.

2. We need to recognize the value of all people and live in such a way that we help others discover their value in Christ.

B. How should we live our lives?

Additional Activities:

1. Spend time in prayer!!!! There are a lot of things you can pray for that go along with this lesson – make a list and then spend time in serious prayer!

2. Volunteer at a local Pregnancy Resource Center.

3. Do something nice for someone who holds a different political view than you.

Purity in the 21st Century: 10 Ways to Help Your Teen Stay Pure

 

Raising godly children in today’s society is a difficult task. The pressures and temptations that assault our children are strong and unyielding. As parents, we want what is best for our children, but we often find ourselves fighting against a culture that teaches that everything is okay – that there are no absolute truths and that we can do whatever we want with our own bodies as long as it feels right to us.

This, however, is not what the Bible teaches. The Bible teaches a higher standard – a standard that says that our bodies are the temple of the Holy Spirit and that we need to keep that temple pure and holy. Today’s culture would argue that those standards are outdated, that purity is impossible and that we should encourage our teens to experiment with their sexuality. But as Christian parents, we know that Biblical standards are true for ALL time, purity IS possible, and the absolute best plan for our sexuality is to save sex until marriage.

Like I said, raising godly children in today’s society is a difficult task.

But it IS possible.

Helping Your Teen Stay Pure

In order to raise godly children in today’s society, we MUST be intentional. We can no longer passively sit by and watch as the culture teaches a new standard of morality. We can no longer remain silent as television shows, movies, music, video games, and, yes, even schools, continually push the boundaries, plainly declaring that Christian values are dead. We MUST take a stand when it comes to purity. WE MUST!!

Our children are depending on us.

So what are some practical ways that we can help our children stand up to the current cultural attack on purity? Let me offer ten suggestions.

10 Ways to Help Your Teen Stay Pure

1. Model Purity in Your Own Life. Purity encompasses so much more than our sexuality. Take a good look at the songs you listen to, the shows you watch, the books you read, the jokes you tell. Are you modeling a life of purity? Are you thinking only on those things which are excellent and praiseworthy? Or are you dangerously close to pushing the boundaries in your own personal life? If our children are hearing us say, “You must live a life of purity!” but they are watching us read “50 Shades of Grey”, they are going to turn our message off all together.

2. Always Attempt to be the Main Source of Information for Your Children About Sex. Yes, I know it can be embarrassing and uncomfortable to talk to your kids about sex. But, guess what? Kids are talking about sex – at younger and younger ages. As parents, we need to be there to give them the correct information and to answer any questions that may come up. We need to keep the lines of communication open and help our children learn the TRUTH. And we need to teach them what the other sources will not – that the consequences of sex outside of a marriage relationship are serious and impact every area of our lives – physical, emotional and spiritual.

There are many ways to do this, but I highly recommend Family Life’s Passport to Purity. They have a complete guide for parents and pre-teens which includes cds, journals, and a leader’s guide. With their program, you simply take your 10-12 year old out for a weekend and follow the instructions they give. It is a fabulous program that helps your child learn the information he needs as well as challenges him to live a life of purity. Check it out here:

http://www.familylife.com/find-help/key-resources/passport2purity#.VNqQty6BBxI

3. Model Purity in Your Own Life. This time I want to speak to single parents. You have an incredible opportunity to model purity for your children! If you are dating, be sure to follow Biblical standards in your relationship. Your children are watching you . . . they know if you are pushing the boundaries. What a fabulous testimony it would be for them to see you practice abstinence until marriage . . . and what a message you send to them if you do not.

4. Monitor Media. It is okay to tell your kids that a certain television show or movie is not appropriate for them to watch. It is okay to turn off the radio if a questionable song comes on. It is okay for you to say, “No”, even if every other parent says, “Yes”. Is your child active on social media? Make sure you have all his passwords and visit his sites often. Does your child have a phone? Don’t let him have unlimited access to it. It might seem overly strict to some people, but we are in a war . . . and the other side does NOT have our children’s best interests in mind. Stand up for your child and SAY NO!!

Purity in the 21st Century

5. Model Purity in Your Own Life. I can not stress this enough! Take a look at your interactions on social media. Are you passing on information that is questionable? Are you “liking” jokes that fall short of biblical standards, visiting websites that make a mockery of purity, accepting friend requests that might cross the lines? Your kids are watching you and will learn more from what you do than from what you say. Period.

6. Teach your children that their value is found in Christ. Your child is valuable – not because of what he wears, how popular he is, or how he looks. Your child is valuable because of Christ. Jesus loved him and gave himself up for him. Teach your child that he is valuable, and that he is WORTH WAITING FOR!! Teach him to honor God with his body.

7. Model Purity in Your Own Life. Have you fallen short in this area? Be honest with your child, pray for forgiveness and start over. Show your child that God can redeem anyone and that God can help anyone live a life of purity. Find someone to hold you accountable in this area. Imagine what your child will learn from your example.

8. Make it difficult for your Child to be in a Situation where his Purity could be Compromised. I know that it is impossible to keep your child from every possible scenario, but you can control a lot. Don’t let your child be in a situation where he will be alone with a member of the opposite sex. If your child is dating, only allow group dates and serve as a chaperone. When your child has a friend over, make sure all interactions take place in a main room with other people around. Don’t let your child go over to a friend’s  house unless you know and trust the other parents and know that the parents will be home. Protect your child from compromising situations!

9. Model Purity in Your Own Life. Don’t let yourself get into compromising situations, either. Take every possible precaution . . . avoid situations where you will be alone with someone of the opposite sex (unless it is your spouse). Hold yourself to the same standards you have for your child!

10. Pray! Pray! Pray! Pray! Pray for your child and his purity. Pray for your child’s future spouse. Be constantly in prayer.  Remember, this is war . . . arm yourself with the proper ammunition!!

There are many other suggestions I could give, and perhaps you have some suggestions of your own. If you do, I’d love to hear them!  Why don’t you share what has worked for you as you help your child maintain his purity?

And please help spread the word. Share this article with others as a way to encourage them to be vigilant about protecting their children in this sex-saturated society. Then come like my facebook page and follow this blog so you can receive more encouragement as you raise godly children in today’s world.

Until next time,

Cheri

My brothers feet smell as bad as noahs ark