BIG IDEA: I CAN ENCOUNTER JESUS
AIM: The ‘I Can Encounter Jesus Anytime’ Childrens Lesson (Luke 7:36-50) will help children to recognize that they can talk to Jesus anytime because he is always with them.
- Crab Soccer. Players sit down on the floor and then place their hands and feet on the floor. They walk on their hands and feet in this way as they play a game of soccer.
- Human Tick Tac Toe. A tic tac toe 3 x 3 grid is taped on the floor. Teams have different colored t-shirts in their hands i.e. blues v reds. Players race in teams to put down a t-shirt in one of the squares then race back to touch the next team player who will do the same. When 3 of the same tshirts are in a row the team wins a point. When all the t-shirts have been used the players simply swap their tshirts to a different box to start the game again.
- Move it up Minute to Win It game. Players have a number or cups, with the top one being marked in a special way as to recognize it from the rest. In sixty seconds the player must swap the cups from the top to the bottom until the top cup rises to the top once again.
- Ketchup Covered MnMs. See who can eat the most in a short space of time!
- Karaoke Competition. Have kids battle it out to sing the loudest/best/funniest in a karaoke competition.
- Air Guitar Competition. Ask the rest of the children to to rate the best air guitarist in the group.
SET the Scene:
Read Luke 7:36-50 – the woman that anoints Jesus with perfume. Remind the children that this woman was known as a ‘sinful’ woman…. even though everyone was sinful, she was known for the things she had done.
To portray this story you could simply tell the story as you pass around a bowl of perfume. Simply empty the contents of a perfume jar/glass and pass it around the group. As the children smell the perfume they can imagine what it must have been like for the woman. If you are feeling daring, why not ask a child or a leader to come forward and play Jesus as you wash their feet with your own hair! This makes a very visual statement that the children are sure to remember!
1. Lego Story edition
2. Funny edition by Kensington Kids
SPOT the Simple Meaning:
1) I CAN COME TO JESUS ANY TIME
Use pictures of different places and times:
Say: We can come to Jesus at any time. He is always willing to listen. We can worship him any time we want. The woman that came to anoint Jesus had not been invited to the party. She was not welcomed by anyone – only Jesus who allowed her to wash and cry by his feet (Luke 7:38). Just as the woman that anointed Jesus interrupted the party and went to see Jesus we can speak to Jesus any time. We can worship him wherever we are.
Worship isn’t just about singing, it is giving Jesus our all, through prayer, through our gifts and talents. It is giving everything we have to him. Jesus pointed out that Simon the Pharisee had not given Jesus him water for his feet to be washed or kissed him or rubbed his head with oil (as was customary at the time) yet this woman had given all that she had (Luke 7:44-46). We can come to him with our worries and concerns and he will give us his peace and joy. We can come to Jesus any time, no matter what is going on in our lives. No matter what we have done. Jesus wants us to come to him.
2) I CAN COME TO JESUS AS I AM
Aladdin movie clip where Aladdin makes a wish to be a prince.
Say: Aladdin had to change who he was to become a Prince. He didn’t want to be a street kid anymore, he wanted to be a Prince so that he could get to know Jasmine and maybe even marry her! Aladdin had to become someone different to know Jasmine.
The woman didn’t have to change who she was to come to Jesus. All the people around knew that she was sinful. They knew all the bad things that she had done and that made them stay away from her. Yet Jesus let her come to him and in front of everyone she washed his feet with her hair! She came to Jesus as she was. The people could not believe that Jesus let a sinner come close to him – she was touching him – surely someone as good and pure as Jesus would not let a sinful woman do this?! They said “If Jesus were a prophet, he would know that the woman who is touching him is a sinner!” (Luke 7:39) Yet Jesus showed Simon the Pharisee and the others at the party that sinners were always welcome to come to Jesus. Jesus told a story that showed the people that we are all sinners; we all do wrong things. Yet we are all welcome to come to Jesus and give him our everything. He will always accept us if we come to him, no matter what.
So, no matter what you have done or where you have been, you are welcomed by Jesus. You can enounter him. You can come to him as you are.
3) JESUS FORGIVES
You will need an alka-seltzer and a cup of water.
Say: The amazing thing about being with Jesus is that he forgives. Jesus forgave the woman and so she wanted to give back to him. Jesus’ love had changed her. Jesus’ love had made her want to love him and give him everything she had.
She didn’t have to become someone different. Jesus had loved her for who she was and all she wanted to do was thank him for all that he had done for her.
When those at the party mocked and complained about her, Jesus reminded them that those that have been forgiven much love much. In Luke 7:47 Jesus says,
“I tell you that her many sins are forgiven. This is clear because she showed great love. But the person who has only a little to be forgiven will feel only a little love.”
Imagine this alka-seltzer is all the bad things you have done. All the things you feel bad about – the things that you regret doing. Imagine this happening to all those things. [Drop it into the water and watch it dissolve]. It has disappeared.
The woman felt relief and joy that those bad things had gone, she had been forgiven! Knowing that she had been forgiven changed her and made her want to serve and love Jesus more. Did you know that Jesus forgives you too? All you need to do is come to him as you are. Admit to the wrong things you have done and ask for his forgiveness. He loves you and He forgives!
SEARCH the Scriptures:
People have encountered Jesus in many different ways and places. Take some bibles – even picture bibles – and ask the children to think about the ways in which Jesus met with people. Failing this, within a large group, project pictures from bible story books onto a screen so that the children can think about and discuss the different ways people encountered Jesus. Were all the ways the same? Why or why not? What does this tell us about who Jesus is and how he wants to encounter us?
- If you could meet Jesus anywhere, where would you choose?
- If you could meet Jesus anywhere what would you be doing together?
- What would Jesus say to you?
- How would Jesus make you feel?
- How might you encounter Jesus today?
- How might you encounter Jesus every day?
- How might you encourage others to encounter Jesus?
Imagination Station: Ask the children to close their eyes as they imagine all the things that they have just said. Let them imagine that Jesus has met them in that very special place. What is he doing? What is he saying? How is he making you feel? How do you want to respond? Allow the children to wait in that place for a short time as they think about all that Jesus is to them.
Remind the children that we can respond to Jesus whenever we want because he always wants to encounter us; every second of every day.
SENSE How You Feel:
Imagine you are the woman that anointed Jesus. Why did you worship Jesus?
Children should think about this question as they do one of the following activities:
– Decorate a mini cup or jug with tissue paper, sequins, gems and foil shapes
– Paint, use tissue paper or plastic bags to create a picture of a jug/perfume container.
– Make a jug/perfume shape out of a paper plate and stick stickers on it.
Jesus decoration Craft. Print out the printable. Cut around the ‘Jesus’ and the cross. Attach the cross with ribbon to the ‘Jesus’ sign. Ask the children to write or draw on the cross who Jesus is to them. i.e they can give him a role or title or draw a symbol such as a heart. Then pray.