Family faith-sharing tip:
Help your children learn to love different people by finding ways for them to get to know, befriend, or help people from all kinds of backgrounds. You can be a good example of God’s generous and all-encompassing love by the way you treat others kindly and by talking respectfully about those who are different from you.
- Luke 10:25-37 (The parable of the Good Samaritan)
- Every person in the world, of every age, race, gender, size, color, language, religion, and ability, is a special child of God. They are all our sisters and brothers in God’s family, and we have a special responsibility to look after each other, help each other, and show each other God’s love.
- Eight small toy people (or use twigs or pegs), small toy donkey, stones, scraps of fabric, or crumpled paper to make a desert, hills and rocks, a little toy hut or house for the inn
- News magazines or papers with pictures of people from different races, ages, sizes, and abilities, etc.
- A large sheet of paper
- Paper glue
- Marker pens (felt pens)
What you do:
- Have the children help you arrange the fabric and paper scraps, stones, etc., to make a road with many curves through the desert from Jerusalem to Jericho. Place some rocks half way along the road for robbers to hide behind.
- Introduce the characters and leave the Samaritan and his donkey, and the two church workers who passed by the injured man, in Jerusalem. Hide the robbers behind the rocks and place the innkeeper in the hut in Jericho.
- Read aloud the story of The Good Samaritan in Luke 10:25-37. Have the children move the pieces to tell the story, so that it comes visually alive for them.
- Explain that the characters usually hated the Samaritan people, so this made his kindness even more special.
- Who showed love to the injured man?
- What did the injured man probably think about the kind Samaritan?
- Why did the Samaritan stop to help when the other men didn’t?
- What’s the most important message in the story?
- Bring out the newspapers and turn the pages together. Cut out pictures of young and old, people from different cultures, people who have done bad things, famous people, men, women, children, and people with disabilities, etc.
- Ask them if they would stop to help this person, like the Samaritan, if the person in the picture were injured or in need of help? If they say No, explore their answer gently and encourage them to see that everyone in the world is someone we need to help because whatever we do for them we are doing for Jesus. But also explain that children can often help best, and most safely, by running to find a trusted adult to help the needy person.
- Let them re-enact the story with the toys if they wish.
- Draw a large heart on the sheet of paper. Write a title: “Everyone Needs God’s Love!”
- Work together to glue all your cutout pictures of faces inside the heart shape.
- As you work, talk about how we can love people of all kinds by being willing to help them in any way we can: smiling; being helpful; comforting them; sharing what we have with them; being a good friend; etc.
- Join hands around your heart poster and pray that God will help you to love all His children, everywhere, and to be especially kind and loving to the different people we meet every day.
- If possible, help your child to identify another child they know who is in need of help or friendship. Think about practical ways in which your child could help the other child, and support your child in any kind and loving plans they choose to make.