BIG IDEA: I CAN PLAN HOW TO SAVE MY MONEY
AIM: The aim of the ‘Saving Money’ Childrens Lesson on the Parable of the Talents is to help children to see that there are different ways to use our money and one way is by planning to save it in the right way.
- Dangle a Dollar. Have two washing lines set up with dollar bills (or your own currency) hung up with pegs at a height that children can reach with their face. Two children are blindfolded (optional) and must keep their hands behind their back. Put a box or bucket at the end of each washing line. Children must grab a dollar with their mouth and then put it in the box or bucket before returning for another. The child with the most dollar bills in their bucket or box at the end, or the child that gets them all off their washing line first is the winner. You can choose whether to let the child keep the money or not.
- Dollar Grab. Each child has a pile of dollars (you could use kids cash if you don’t have enough dollars) next to them. They must transfer the notes from the pile into a bucket using their mouth.
- Cash Flick. Children are given a coin and must try and flick it into a bucket or box from a certain distance away. It is your choice if they get multiple chances or if they are eliminated from the game if they fail. This could be played in teams where each child is given a coin or it could be part of a small group game where only a couple of children are chosen. The child or team that gets their cash in the box or bucket is the winner.
- Dive For Dollars.
- Dollar Jump.
- Cash Dunk.
- Piggy Bank Dash. (regular/widescreen) Print off some coins or kids cash and a picture of a piggy bank. You can find one here. Stick the coins all around the room. Choose two players that must collect as much cash as they can and stick it to the piggy bank. Loop tape and stick it to the back of each coin to make them stick to places. To play with more players use it as a relay with teams lining up to go and grab a coin before returning to the line and tagging the next person. The team with the highest value of coins in their piggy bank at the end of the game is the winning team.
BIG VERSE: Give, and you will receive. You will be given much. It will be poured into your hands—more than you can hold. You will be given so much that it will spill into your lap. The way you give to others is the way God will give to you. Luke 6:38.
SET the Scene:
Read Matthew 25:14-30. Explain that the story is all about God and us. We are the servants and He is the master. He has given each of us a certain amount of money, gifts and talents. We have to decide what to do with the things we have been given. These things are on loan to us – that means they have been given to us during our lives, but ultimately they are God’s and His to give. What we do with the things we are given will determine if we are a good or bad servant. If we are faithful or unfaithful.
SPOT the Simple Meaning:
1) THE WRONG WAY TO SAVE: BURYING IT
You will need some kids cash and a large spade or shovel to hold as you talk.
Say: When the master returned from his journey, he rewarded two of his servants, but he was angry with the third. Why was that? [Get feedback] Exactly! The servant had buried the one talent that he was given. That money was useful and could have done many things, but the servant chose to bury it. Why did he bury it? [Get feedback] That’s right! He was afraid. The servant was afraid of what his master would do if there was nothing left when he returned. He was afraid of losing the money, so he hid it. He got a spade and he dug up the ground [Get spade/shovel and act it out] and he hid the money. [Throw some kids cash on the floor].
The master was disappointed with this servant, not because he lost any talent, because the talent was there. He was angry and disappointed because this wasn’t the right way to save the money. The master said that he could have done something different with it. This was the lazy way to look after money. It was done out of fear and not out of faith. God doesn’t want us to act out of fear. He wants us to have faith to believe that something good is going to happen with the things we do for God.
2) THE RIGHT WAY TO SAVE: INVESTING
You will need some kids cash or copper coins and a sign that says ‘bank’ and a team member or child to act as the bank for you. Place the ‘Bank’ sign around their neck.
Say: The master tells the third servant that if he had really wanted to please the master then he would have taken the money and invested it in the bank. Can I have someone to be the bank for me? [Get a volunteer and put the ‘bank sign on them.] When we invest in the bank it means that we put our money in the bank. [Hand some money to the person with the ‘bank’ sign on.] Over time the bank will add some extra money to our money. [Have the ‘bank’ person pick up some extra money from the floor or a pot, wherever you have it stored.] This extra money is called interest.
The longer the money is in the bank the more interest we will gain. [Encourage the ‘bank’ to pick up more money. Then have them hand you your money back with the added interest and thank them.] The master knew that if the servant was trying to do his best, and was thinking about what to do with the money he had been trusted with, he would have eventually thought to have put it into the bank. Why? Because this would have made the master more money, and this would have pleased him.
A wise person think ahead; a fool does not and even brags about it!
This story that Jesus told reminds us that what we do with all that God has given us is very important. The master represents God and we are like the servants. We should plan what to do with the money we have been given. Plan when to be generous and what to give. Sometimes we may give unplanned, but we always want to plan to give something when we can, because God is a giving God too. We can also plan on how to save our money. If you get pocket money how much do you save? Saving helps us to store for the future… not so that we can hoard it all for ourselves, but so that we can plan for the future and plan who to give to.
SEARCH the Scriptures:
You will need one or two trays or buckets full of soil. Digging For Cash. (regular/widescreen) Using the kids cash put the bible verse references on the back of each note. Then push the notes into the trays or buckets. Choose two or more children to come and put their hands in the soil and find the kids cash notes. Then discuss the bible verses and/or encourage the children to find them in their bibles.
Saving Money Bible Verses:
Wise people store up the best foods and olive oil. But a foolish person eats up everything he has. Proverbs 21:20.
Those who plan and work hard earn a profit. But those who act too quickly become poor. Proverbs 21:5.
When a wise person sees danger ahead, he avoids it. But a foolish person keeps going and gets into trouble. Proverbs 27:12.
There are four things on earth that are small. But they are very wise: Ants are not very strong. But they store up food in the summer. Proverbs 30:24-25.
Money that comes easily disappears quickly. But money that is gathered little by little will slowly grow. Proverbs 13:11.
- Do you find it easy to save money?
- When was the last time you tried to save money?
- Do you think it is best to save a large amount once or a small amount every week or month? Why?
SENSE How You Feel:
- Create a money wallet using the ‘Cheerful Giver’ large wallet template.
- Make a piggy bank using the Proverbs 13:11 Piggy Bank template front and back.
- Start saving together as a group and use the money for a trip out together or to be able to give for a special project, person or group in the future.
Say: Saving is all about planning how to use the money that you have been given wisely. Do you have an allowance/pocket money? Is there something that God is asking you to save for? In what way is He asking you to save? Using some of the kids cash write or draw something on the back of the cash and ask God to help you to use the money that you are given wisely.
Asking Jesus to be Number One:
2. We’ve been talking about saving money today and how God wants us to use our money wisely. He wants us to think about how we use everything that we have been given wisely. But did you know that God also wants to save us? It’s a different kind of saving. This kind of saving is saving us from something. God wants to rescue and save us from making wrong choices that cause us to be separated from Him. Anything that we say, think or do that is wrong and hurts others separates us from God. Jesus came to the earth to save each one of us. He came to rescue us so that we can know Him as our friend and so we can live forever with Him. This kind of saving means that we can be with God forever. It means giving our lives to God and asking Him to be number one in our lives and asking Him to help us make right decisions.
The servant didn’t put his master as number one – or he would have done anything he could do please him. God wants to be number one in our lives. Will you put Him as number one today? [Give children an opportunity to respond, but never add pressure for them to respond.]
Pray: Thank You God for all that You have given me. Please forgive me for the wrong things I have done. Jesus I believe that You came to rescue me and save me. I believe that You died and rose again. Come into my life and be number one in my life. Help me to be more like You. Amen.