BIG IDEA: WE CAN LIVE AT PEACE WITH OTHERS
AIM: The ‘Live at Peace’ Childrens Lesson on Genesis 37 was written by Kidz Klub in Liverpool. Their aim was to run children’s clubs as outreaches. This lesson was aimed at communicating what it means to live at peace with others through the Bible story of Joseph. This session is the first of twelve sessions in the ‘Pirate’ Teaching Series by Kidz Klub. To download the PDF of the session click here.
2. ‘Treasure Quest’ by Jana Alayra
4. ‘Peace Like a River’ by Listener Kids
- Roll out the Barrel
You will need: One large barrel, either wooden or plastic.
This is a timed game, so one team play first and then the other. The quickest team wins. Vary the game depending on whether you’re using a wooden or plastic barrel. Wooden barrels are quite heavy, so if this is what you’re using, pick three players from each team and take care! Time them while they push the barrel to one end of the stage, round a cone and back again. If you’re using a plastic barrel, you will only need two players. Set a simple obstacle course, using cones and chairs. They have to push the barrel round the obstacle course and back.
Introduce the cabin boy/girl at this point. You’ve been at sea so long, your food’s gone bad and all the cabin boy can find to eat is a plate full of live maggots. (You can buy them from a fishing shop.) Show the kids the maggots and ask if anyone wants to eat them. Obviously they won’t. One of your team captains could then say they look gorgeous and you could then have a bit of fun while you dare them to eat a live maggot. (It’s obviously up to the individual whether or not they take up the challenge! One of our team captains did and the kids were still talking about it weeks later.)
2. Maggots and Custard.
You will need: Several jelly snake sweets, placed on a large plate and covered in custard.
Two boys and two girls stand facing the audience, with their hands behind their backs. Each has a plate of custard covered snakes on a table in front of them. When you say “Go!”, they have to remove the “extra large maggots” from the custard and spit them on the table. The first player to remove all their snakes wins.
The cabin boy/girl returns, carrying a box of eggs they’ve just found. “Great, now we can have an omelette for our tea!” But then Hook enters with the cannibals and they custard pie the cabin boy and team captains and steal the eggs. As a farewell gesture they could smash a couple of eggs on a team captains head! You then play the next game to collect more eggs, before everyone starves.
GAME # 3:
You will need: Twelve large punch balloons, each with a raw egg in. Before the club starts, hang the balloons from the ceiling, above the stage area. Two ‘balloon poppers’, which are made from long broom handle with pins on the end.
The balloons hanging over one side of the stage are for the girls and the over other side are for the boys. (You could differentiate by colour.) Position six girl players and six boy players each under a balloon. When you say “Go!”, the team captains run along, bursting the balloons with a balloon popper. The kids underneath have to try to catch the eggs. The team with the most whole eggs at the end of the game wins.
Scrub the Decks.
You will need: Four large buckets of water, two at the back of each team, with approximately ten sponges in each. You could buy larger sponges and cut them into four pieces to save on cost.
The smashed eggs have made the ship too messy. We need to get the team captains to scrub the decks. Choose two players from each team to help the captains. Squirt some tomato ketchup around the stage area. When you say GO, the sponges are passed through the teams from the back to the front. The team captains and players then use them to scrub the stage. (You may want to place a bucket on the stage for them to squeeze the sponges out into.) The winners are the team with the cleanest half of the stage when the whistle goes.
You could then make the captain of the losing team walk the plank into the paddling pool. Remember to get lots of chanting of “Walk the Plank!” going in the teams. If you haven’t got a plank, you could dunk the captain by their arms and legs.
BIBLE VERSE: Live at peace with one another. 1 Thessalonians 5 v. 13.
You can use the memory verse PowerPoint image here.
SET the Scene:
Joseph and his brothers. Genesis 37.
Today’s memory verse tells us that we need to live at peace with one another. It’s simple really; it just means try to get on with people and be friends. But I know some kids who aren’t very good at doing that. They’re always trying to wind other people up, trying to get others into trouble, so they can look the best. Well, today’s Bible Lesson is about someone who was just like that and in the end the trouble he caused, came back on him.
Today’s Bible Lesson is all about a teenager called Joseph. Now the Bible says that Joseph had twelve brothers and sisters and out of them all, he was his Dad’s favorite. Joseph’s dad was always getting him to snitch on his brothers and buying him expensive clothes that no one else had and because of that, his brothers hated him.
Well, one day, when Joseph was seventeen, he had a really strange dream. In his dream he and all his brothers had big bundles of corn. They were out in the field when all of a sudden, his brothers bundles started to bow down to him, like he was a king, while Joseph’s bundle stood in the middle, tall and proud, the strongest. Now if you’d a dream like that, wouldn’t you keep your mouth shut? You’d hardly go bragging about how you were the very best and everyone else was going to bow down to you. You’d know that that would only cause trouble. But not Joseph. He didn’t care about living at peace with his brothers, trying to get along with them and make them feel good about themselves. He just wanted everyone to hear about how great he was. So he ran straight to his brother and announced his dream.
Well when they heard Joseph bragging and boasting, they went mad. They started to hatch a plan to hurt him. One brother wanted to jump him and beat him up. Another one wanted to throw him in a deep pit, that he’d never climb out of and leave him to die. But finally they came up with their best idea. When they were out in the desert, miles from anywhere, Joseph’s brothers jumped on him, ripped his expensive clothes off, then they put him in chains and sold him to another country to be a slave.
Joseph started out stirring a little bit of trouble, boasting a bit here, telling tales on his brothers there, but that trouble grew, until he was the one who got hurt. You see, if you’re the kind of person who goes around causing trouble, in the end the one who’ll lose out will be you. That’s why God tells us to live in peace with one another.
SPOT the Simple Meaning:
1) OBJECT LESSON: FIGHTING IS EASY
You will need: A large ‘Sara Lee’ type chocolate gateau and a large bowl of ice cream. For maximum comic effect, the bigger the better! You may want to squirt some extra cream on top, so there’s plenty of mess to smear around when you come to the fight!
A: Hey ‘A’ look at my lovely ice-cream!
B: Cor, that looks really nice, but not as nice as my chocolate cake; look, it’s got cream and mousse, mmm, and real bits of chocolate. Yummy!
A: Oh yeah, wow, look at it! (Person A moves closer to the cake and accidentally slips and pushes it into B’s face.)
B: What did you do that for?! You did that deliberately!
A: I never did! It was an accident, honest!
B: No it wasn’t! Right, if I’m not having my cake, you’re not having your ice cream!
(B pushes ice-cream into A’s face and an amusing, messy scuffle ensues!)
Narrator: Stop, stop, stop! Kids, if someone’s nasty to us, the first thing we want to do is get them back, isn’t it? It makes us feel good to show them who’s boss, like we’re the strongest. But kids, causing trouble isn’t actually a very clever thing to do. I mean, anyone can fight and swear and have a go at people. The streets near me are full of people who do just that. But do you know what I don’t see very often? People who know how to live at peace with one another. That’s because, to treat other people right, you need to be strong on the inside. Strong enough to care and encourage people. Strong enough to stop fights instead of starting them. Strong enough to stand up and do the right thing, even if all your friends are treating people wrong. And it’s those kind of strong people that God’s looking for today. People who’ll change this town/city by living at peace with everyone.
2) OBJECT LESSON: GOD MADE US DIFFERENT
You will need: Some Mars Bar ice-cream, and some empty Mars Bar ice-cream containers.
Now, has anybody here got a favourite food? (Take answers.) Do you know what my favourite food is? It’s Mars ice-cream (start to take some spoonfuls.) I love it. But imagine if all I ate was Mars icecream, Mars ice-cream for breakfast, Mars ice-cream for lunch, Mars ice-cream when I got in from work, Mars ice-cream in the evening… (Take spoonfuls from different, almost empty, tubs as you speak and then throw them over your shoulder and move on to the next one.) Sooner or later it would start to get really booooring… Bleuch! (Mime being sick into a bucket.) It wouldn’t really be that good.
You see, God has made loads of different kinds of food. Crisps are different from ice-cream, ice-cream’s different from sausages, sausages are different from chips. They’re all different, but they’re all great. Now, just like God has made different kinds of food, he’s also made different kinds of people: people who are fat, people who are thin, people who come from here and people who don’t, people who are black, who are white, who are brown. They’re all different and they’re all great. And just like it’d be stupid to only eat one kind of food, it’s stupid to only be friends with one kind of person.
You see, I know lots of people who’ll live at peace with people who are just like them, people who dress the same as them and look the same and talk the same. But if someone is even a tiny bit different, they go out of their way to cause trouble for that new person. Kids, God doesn’t want you to be like that, causing trouble for people who are a different colour or live on a different estate or come from a different country. He wants you to live at peace with everyone, people who are the same as you and people who are different. God’s put all sorts of different people in this world and he’s told us to live at peace with one another.
3) OBJECT LESSON: WORK TOGETHER
You will need: a strong thick rope, suitable for tug of war.
That’s right. God wants us to live at peace with everyone, but you know he particularly wants us to live at peace with other Christians. To explain why it’s so important, I want to have a little competition. I want to find out once and for all, who is the strongest – the boys or the girls? So I’m going to need a team of four boy helpers and a team of four girl helpers. Who wants to play? (Pick eight pre-primed teenage helpers.) OK boys on this side, girls on that side. Look at those boys. Girls, you’re really going to need all your muscles.
(The helpers pick up the tug of war rope. One of the boys starts to criticise someone in his team. They end up arguing.) On your marks… (The argument continues.) Get set… GO! (The boys are still arguing, get caught off guard and the girls beat them.)
Kids did you see that, even though the boys were bigger, the girls won. Do you know why that was? Because the girls stuck together. They were on the same team. They didn’t fight – they acted like friends. They made each other strong. Now, sometimes being a Christian at school or in the street can be hard can’t it? People might call you a Bible Basher or say Jesus is not real. It can feel as if being a Christian makes you a few enemies. And that’s why it’s really important that when we come to church we act like we’re on the same team. Wouldn’t it be great if from now on, there was no more bullying or fighting or name calling at church – EVER! If everybody knew that when they came to church they’d be with friends. Kids, it’s important, God’s made us a part of his family and he wants his family to be different. He wants us to be people who live at peace with one another.