PREK & ELEMENTARY
WEEK OF SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 6
JOHN WAS BORN
Bible Passage: Luke 1
Story Point: John was born to prepare the way for Jesus.
Key Passage: In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. John 1:1-2 (NIV)
What is God Like: God is personal. (He is fully God and fully a human)
CHRIST CONNECTION: When Zechariah believed God’s word, he praised God. Zechariah’s son, John, was born to get people ready for Jesus. People would praise God for keeping His promise to send the Savior.
LET'S HAVE A CONVERSATION
1. CHECK OUT THE BIBLE STORY
OPTION 2: WATCH IT
2. SHARE YOUR STORY
Consider questions that pursue the heart of your child during natural points of connection. Here are a couple for during a walk or at the dinner table this week:
What’s something you are waiting for? Do you know for sure it will happen or is it something you’re hoping will come true? Tell me about it.
Zechariah had to go a long time without talking. That’s hard. If you couldn’t talk for a long time, how would you want to communicate with your family?
3. MORE QUESTIONS FOR CONVERSATION
Who appeared to Zechariah at the temple? (an angel)
What did the angel’s tell Zechariah? (Elizabeth, Zechariah’s wife, would have a son named John.)
Why didn’t Zechariah believe the angel at first? (Zechariah and Elizabeth were both very old.)
Why did God make Zechariah unable to talk until John was born? (Because he did not believe the angel.)
Why was John born? (John was born to get people ready for Jesus.)
Is Jesus God or human? He is both! He is fully God and human! He is personal.
Where was Zechariah when Gabriel told him about John’s birth? (in the sanctuary of the Lord, Luke 1:8-10)
Why was Zechariah unable to speak until John was born? (He did not believe God at first, Luke 1:20)
Where did John live when he grew up? (in the wilderness, Luke 1:80)
Can you think of times we doubt God, or struggle to understand how His plans work? Guide kids to discuss how they feel about God in hard times. Remind kids that God is always faithful. No matter how we feel or what situations we face, God’s promises are sure and will come true in His perfect timing.
What are some ways God can use you to point people to Jesus? Encourage kids to think about their friends and family members who may not love Jesus. Discuss ways to show them God’s love and share the gospel with them. Remind kids that even people who know and love Jesus need to be pointed to Jesus to help them remember how good He is.
When is it easy to praise God? When is it hard to? Discuss with the kids how difficult times can make it hard to trust God, but they can also push us toward the Lord as we learn to rely on Him for support.
ACTIVITIES FOR THIS WEEK
MAke door name hangers
WHAT YOU NEED: paper, stickers, crayons, markers
WHAT YOU DO:
For preschoolers: Cut a six-inch piece of paper or yardstick. Write child’s name on each strip. Provide stickers and crayons for toddlers to decorate their names. Hole punch the top corners of each strip and thread with yarn. Children may hang the artwork on their doors at home. Retell the Bible story.
For elementary: Encourage kids to decorate a sign for their door or school working with their name.
WHAT YOU SAY: An angel told Zechariah that Elizabeth would have a baby. The angel said to name the baby John. Names are often significant in the Bible. God knows you by name. He is personal!
WHAT YOU DO: Play some version of “Memory.” If you don’t have a memory-type game at home, you can use a whole deck of cards. For younger kids, just choose to do one or two suits. Place them face down in rows and take turns choosing two. When you make a match (same number/color), go again.
WHAT YOU SAY: Malachi was the last prophet to speak before God sent the angel to Zechariah. The people had to wait 400 years to hear from God! The people remembered God’s promises even when it was really hard. Sometimes, they forgot just like we may forget where we saw that card the first time, but God’s people were reminded of His promises because they could remember stories of what God had done.
KEY PASSAGE ACTIVITY
WHAT YOU NEED: index cards, marker, Bible
WHAT YOU DO: Print the words beginning, Word, and God on index cards. Place the key passage marker at John 1:1. Invite a child to open your Bible to the key passage. Read the key passage aloud. Say the verse and hold up the corresponding index card for each word as it is spoken. Next, lead children in saying the verse but pause and hold up the card instead of saying the word when you come to it. Encourage children to say the word on the card.
WHAT YOU SAY: Good job saying these words. Our key passage says Jesus is the Word. Jesus was with God in the beginning, but He is also God at the same time.
"In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God." John 1:1
"In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning." John 1:1-2
PRESCHOOL AND TODDLERS...
play a quiet game
WHAT YOU DO: Invite toddlers to sit in a circle with their hands in their lap. Explain that they must stay quiet until you say, “His name is John.” Then they can clap, cheer, wiggle, and praise God. Retell the Bible story.
WHAT YOU SAY: Zechariah could not talk until John was born to get people ready for Jesus. When he could speak, Zechariah praised God for His plan to rescue people! THERE IS NO ONE LIKE JESUS!
rock a baby
WHAT YOU NEED: baby dolls and blankets
WHAT YOU DO: Encourage children to snuggle and rock the dolls. Talk about how Zechariah and Elizabeth did not have any children.
WHAT YOU SAY: An angel told Zechariah that Elizabeth would have a baby. Their baby, John, was born to get people ready for Jesus. We can praise God for sending Jesus. THERE IS NO ONE LIKE JESUS!
journalingFOR 4TH-6TH GRADE
Guide kids to think about and answer one or two journaling prompts. Be sure to join them.
What does this story teach me about God or the gospel?
What does the story teach me about myself?
Are there things God is asking me to do in this story? How are they for God’s glory and my good?
Are there any promises in this story to remember? How do they help me trust and love God?
What characteristics of God do I see in this story?
What does the story teach me about people around me?
If I’m honest, what parts of this are hard to understand or believe?
talking to kids about the gospel...
Here’s one way we talk about the gospel with elementary kids
A- We are God’s most treasured creation! Created to be with Him. However, there’s a problem. It’s sin. Sin is anything we do that isn’t what God wants for us. We’ve all done it, even me. And sin gets in the way of us having a relationship with God. We need to admit we have this problem!
B- Believe that Jesus is who He says He is and did what He said He did in order to make a way for our relationship with God to be made whole again...specifically He loves you SO MUCH that...”Christ died for our sins, just as Scripture said he would. He was buried. He was raised from the dead on the third day, just as Scripture said he would be.” (1 Cor. 15: 3-4) He took the punishment we deserved.
C- Choose to put your faith in Jesus. Jesus says that our response, or the way we accept it is by faith. In other words putting our trust in Him.