BIG IDEA: JESUS IS WITH ME
AIM: The aim of the ‘Jesus Calms the Storm’ session is to teach the children to know that Jesus is with them all the time, no matter what situation they are in, so they don’t have to be afraid.
- Bubble Blow. Children compete to blow a bubble across a room. The winner is the player that blows the bubble to the end line first.
- Drip Drop Splash. This fun game will get your kids laughing as they make a bit of a splash.
- Water Pistol Targets. Place some of our targets up on a wall or on the back of chairs. Have children compete to soak the targets as best as they can. If you print them on an inkjet printer the ink will run and indicate how much of the target has been shot and where.
- Fear Factor. Have children compete to eat sardines, tomato ketchup covered MnMs, Mayonaise covered Pickles or anything else you can think of that is disgusting!
- Coke Chug. Slip a sock over a can of coke and have kids take turns to see who can drink the most of their can in a minute.
BIG VERSE: Be still and know that I am God. Psalm 46:10a.
SET the Scene:
Read Mark 4:35-41. The story shows us that Jesus is always with us and we don’t have to be afraid.
- Jesus Calms the Storm
- Jesus Calms the Storm (Gilligans Themes Song style)
- Jesus Calms the Storm – Puppet version
- Jesus Calms the Storm – Wild Bible version
- Jesus Calms the Storm – Minecraft version
- Jesus Calms the Storm – Gracelink edition
- Why did Jesus want to get into the boat?
- Who was with Jesus?
- What did Jesus do in the boat?
- What did the disciples do when they got scared?
- What did Jesus say to the disciples?
- What did Jesus do to the storm?
- Why did Jesus ask the disciples why they had “no faith”?
SPOT the Simple Meaning:
1) JESUS IS ALWAYS WITH ME
OBSTACLE COURSE GAME. Have children go through an obstacle course or play a game with their hands and feet (on one side of their bodies) tied together. Alternatively have children play a feeding or action game where children must feed each other or do an action (such as brush their hair) whilst having their hands tied.
Say: That game was really funny – it can be pretty strange to try and do actions with someone else tied to you! Yet the cool thing about having someone with you all the time is that you can help one another. Jesus is always with us. Yet, unlike the game, it’s not annoying or difficult to have him around. Jesus is with us and we are not alone. We have a constant friend; someone to talk to, go to and generally hang out with.
When the disciples crossed the lake with Jesus, Jesus fell asleep, yet he never left them. The whole time that the boat was being rocked and thrown about by the storm must have been really frightening, but Jesus was there. He was always there. Jesus is always with you too. He’s the best and closest friend you will ever have, if you want him to be. The bible tells us that he will never leave us or abandon us and that he is closer than a brother.
When you think of Jesus as your best friend and someone that is there to help and love you then it is so exciting to think that he is always with you and by your side! He can help lead you and guide you in life because he is always there!
2) I DON’T HAVE TO PANIC OR BE AFRAID
You will need a number of different colored balloons. Write the names of different fears that the children might have or that the children may feel on balloons. As you talk pop the balloons. Show the children that Jesus is much bigger than our fears!
Say: The disciples were scared when they were on the boat and the wind was battering against them and the waves were crashing in. Would they down? Were they going to live? Those must have been just some of the thoughts that were rushing through their minds. When we panic or get afraid it can be difficult to stop silly and scary thoughts invading our heads!
When the disciples started to panic they knew where to turn. They went straight to Jesus. They didn’t delay, they called out to him. Jesus reminds them that they shouldn’t have been afraid. Jesus was God. He can do the impossible! Jesus stood up, told the wind and waves to be quiet and still and that was it. They were. Quiet. Still. Everything was back to normal again.
We don’t have to panic or be afraid because Jesus is with us, He is God and He is in control! All we have to do is trust that He is going to help us and that He will help us get through the difficult thing we are going through. No matter how tough our situation is, Jesus is with us and will help us.
3) I CAN SPEAK TO JESUS
Watch this fun video about how to pray with your kids.
Say: Sometimes we feel afraid or scared and we don’t know what to do. We need help. We don’t have to do everything on our own. We can always speak to Jesus and ask him for help! Psalm 145:18 says, “The LORD is near to all them that call on him, to all that call on him in truth.” That means that when we call to God, He is near to us. He hears. We just have to be real with Him. Just like the disciples were real with Jesus. They didn’t try to hide how they were feeling. They came to Jesus, knowing that the truth was that he was the only One that could help them.
We can speak to God anytime. God hears our prayers and listens to us, He even answers! All we have to do is call on Him. We can never be too quick to pray. God is always ready to hear and talk with us. Are you ready and willing to talk to Him?
SEARCH the Scriptures:
There were many times in the bible where people felt afraid. We can all panic and feel fear from time to time, but it’s how we deal with those feelings that is important. Let’s look into some of the other stories in the bible to see what people did when they felt afraid.
Fear Factor Find Game. Children take turns to put their hands in some yucky substances and find the bible character’s name. Think beans, custard, apple sauce, mud and scrambled eggs. Any substance that you can think of that you would hate to put your hands in. The winner is the one that can pull out the most bible characters and answer why they think they got scared.
Abraham: scared when he lied about his wife being his sister to avoid being hurt by Abimelech and Pharoah.
Moses: scared when he killed the Egyptian and had to run away (Exodus 2), also when he was told he would lead the people to the Promised Land (Exodus 6).
Gideon: Became scared when God appeared to him and told him he was a ‘Mighty warrior’. (Judges 6)
King Saul: feared Goliath so much that they sent a boy to fight him rather than fighting him himself. (1 Samuel 17)
Jonah: scared when he was told to speak to the Ninevites – he ran away. (Jonah 1)
Elijah: ran away when he found out that Jezebel was after him! (1 Kings 19)
Elisha’s servant: became afraid when a great army gathered against them (2 Kings 6:16-17)
Shepherds: when they saw the angels became afraid (Luke 2:10)
Soldiers at Jesus’ death: The earthquake following Jesus’ death frightened the centurion soldiers. (Matthew 27:54)
SENSE How You Feel:
How would it feel to be the disciples as the waters started to flood the boat?
- Ask children to color the ‘Jesus Gives Me Peace’ Printable as they think.
- Give each child a F.E.A.R Printable and discuss as they color.
- Encourage children to create the ‘Jesus Calms the Storm’ craft
- Fill out the ‘Jesus Calms the Storm’ printable wordsearch
- Set out your room with some blue plastic sheeting or fabric on the floor. Get children to wave the fabric as the children take turns to imagine how it would feel to be floating on a boat when the storm came. You could even use an inflatable boat and let the children take turns to sit in it. Ask children to re-enact the wind and the waves. Then discuss how it would have felt to be in a boat that was sinking.
- For older children or teenagers you could show some clips of real ships in storms. Then ask the children how they would feel to be caught in a storm today and what they would do.
- Encourage children to color the ‘Jesus is in Control’ Printable as they think.
- Get a large tub or tray of water and encourage the children to create their own or float toy boats as they think about how Jesus was with the disciples in the boat.
- When was the last time you felt afraid?
- What do you do when you feel afraid?
- Who is the first person you would tell if you felt scared?
- How do you know Jesus is with you when you feel afraid?
- Do you think God cares about your fears?
- Can you stop yourself from feeling scared? Why/Why not? If so, how?
- Write down your fears on a sheet of paper and then put them through a shredder to remind the children that their fear has no power over them. Jesus is greater than any fear they may have.
- Encourage each child to pair off or get into triplets with their friends, to share what they are scared of and to pray.
- Have children write their fears on a whiteboard with a whiteboard marker. Pray over the fears, then use a water gun or a cup of water to wash away the fears. Alternatively have the children write their fears outside with chalk on the sidewalk. Then wash it away once you have prayed. Remind the children that Jesus washes away our fears because He is with us.
- Have children write their fears on a cup each. Stack the cups into a tower and as you pray allow the children to throw balls at the cups to knock them over, reminding them that Jesus brings down our fears.