Family faith-sharing tip:
Keep your faith-sharing times short, simple, and enjoyable. Be lovingly tolerant when children respond to these activities in unexpected or unaccepting ways.
- Matthew 24:13
- When we follow Jesus, He helps us to make wise choices.
- Index cards and pens
- Bible concordance (or use www.biblegateway.com)
- Plain crackers on a plate
- A small gift for each child
- A handful of nuts or carrot sticks (needs to be something hard to chew)
- A handful of raisins or chunks of soft fruit
- Serving bowls
What you do:
- Make up a short treasure hunt using Bible verses. Search for words like “table,” “bed,” “clothes,” “bath,” etc. Write only the Bible reference on the index card. Keep your own list of which Bible reference refers to which object.
- Keep one card to start the hunt and hide the second card in the place that the first card refers to. Hide the third card in the place mentioned on the second card, and so on, ending up with the place where you will hide the treat. If you can’t find a verse for this place, just write directions on the last card.
- Place the plate of plain crackers on the table with the first clue.
- Hide the treats at the end of the trail.
- Invite the family to join you for an activity.
- Open with a prayer, thanking Jesus for being with you.
- Say, “I have a plate of crackers here. You can have a cracker now, or you can choose not to have a cracker and follow a treasure hunt. The Bible clues will lead you to a lovely treat. But it’s your choice.”
- Hopefully they will choose the trail and the treat!
- Help them find the Bible verses and follow the trail together. Take the crackers with you and every time you find a clue offer the choice to eat a cracker now, or have the treat at the end.
- Finally, enjoy the special treats at the end of the trail.
- If appropriate, read aloud Matthew 24:13; James 1:12.
- Ask: What did you enjoy most about this activity? What was the most important thing you learned as you did it?
- Place the nuts (or carrots) and raisins (or chunks of soft, sweet fruit) in bowls.
- Tell one another about something happening in the next week that you’re not looking forward to, or something difficult you have to do. Chew a nut or a carrot as you pray silently for each other, or think about one another’s challenges.
- Then thank God for the good things that happened in the last week. Celebrate by eating one raisin or chunk of fruit. Ask everyone to savor the fruit for as long as possible as they pray silently, thanking God for all the good things that have happened, or just thinking about them with joy in their hearts.
If appropriate, close the prayer by thanking God for being with you through the hard times and the good times as you follow Jesus.