The teaching truths from our lesson in Starting Blocks this week make me want to sing and shout: “Jesus is the Promised One who rescues us from sin” and “God always keeps His promises.” This is the culmination of what the kids have heard over and over through our Old Testament lessons: “God had a plan to rescue the world from sin.” Take some time to celebrate with your little ones this week the wonderful truth that God truly did come to earth to rescue us from sin. There is even an opportunity to share with your kids how God did that in your life. Don’t miss out!
HIGHLIGHTS from Sunday…
This week your child learned that God sent his son to earth as a baby. Joseph took his wife Mary, who was expecting a baby, from his hometown of Nazareth to Bethlehem where he was to register for a census that was commanded by Ceasar Augustus. While they were there, the time came for Mary to have the baby and she gave birth to her first born, a son. She named him Jesus just as the angel Gabriel had instructed her. She wrapped Him in cloths and laid him in a manger because there was not room for them in the inn. Jesus is the greatest gift ever given. (Luke 2)
- Jesus is God’s son.
- Jesus is a gift from God.
“For God loved the world so much that He gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in Him will not perish but have eternal life.”
Here’s a simple song to help your child (and you) memorize this week’s memory verse!
3 Activities that remind us Jesus is a gift from God:
1. Birthday Party for Jesus
Have a birthday party for Jesus….a lot of families do this, and it is a lot of fun. Have a birthday cake or cupcakes for Jesus. Show your children their baby pictures. Talk about how happy you were when they came into your life and how you celebrated. Then, talk about how the whole world should celebrate the birth of Jesus because He is a gift from God. Also, you could discuss how a birthday party usually has gifts. Instead of giving actual gifts to Jesus, have your children write a note to Jesus telling Him how thankful they are for Him and for the wonderful things he has done for them. End by singing “Happy Birthday” to Jesus and enjoying the cake! While eating the cake talk with your child using these questions:
- Why is Jesus God’s greatest gift to us?
- What do you do when someone gives you a gift? (you “receive” it)
- What does it mean to receive Jesus – God’s gift?
- Have you received Jesus?
2. Make a Baby Jesus
Make a baby Jesus out of a clean kid’s sock. If needed start by bleaching the white sock so it is very clean. Let your child place stuffing in the sock so it is looks like a long tube. Tie a knot at the end leaving some of the sock at the end. Have your child fold the top of the sock over the tube so it covers the knot, then fold the very end of the sock up just a little to make a hat for the baby. Use a rubber band and wrap it around the sock to make a neck between the head and body. Next, tie a ribbon or string over the rubber band. Help your child draw eyes, nose and a mouth on baby Jesus. Cut scrap fabric in a large triangle and wrap it around the body of the baby for his blanket. Grab a brown lunch sack and cut ¾ off the top of the sack, so about ¼ of the sack is left for a shallow rectangle once the bag is open. Use the rectangle bag as the manager for baby Jesus. Get a piece of brown construction paper and help your child cut it into long strips. Place the strips into the rectangle bag, if needed cut another piece of construction paper into strips to fill up the manager. Place baby Jesus in the manager and wrap it up in a bag or a box. On Christmas morning let this gift be the first one opened on Christmas.
3. Jesus is Born
Have your child help you make vanilla or chocolate pudding. After the pudding is ready, place a spoonful of the pudding into a paper baking cup. Have your child shred a shredded wheat cracker over the pudding to represent hay. Next place a pretzel nugget on the hay to represent the body of baby Jesus. Lastly, top the pretzel with a Cheerio to stand for the head of baby Jesus.
Jesus, thank you so much for coming to earth for us. Help us remember that celebrating the gift of Jesus is the most special part of Christmas!
Image via Flickr Creative Commons
Looking for a place to serve this Christmas season with your family? Check out the Holiday Service Guide on our website!