THE ARMOUR OF GOD
LESSON TWO - THE BELT OF TRUTH
Theme: Prepare yourself for the spiritual battles of life, putting on the whole armour of God
The Set: Medieval times. Turn the puppet stage into a castle. Obtain a suit of armour if possible or make one.
A knight in shining armour, a court jester, a beautiful damsel, king, kings cook, and the enemy, etc. Bobo the puppet and a town crier puppet are also needed.
This week: we will discover that being true to God is crucial to holding everything together. You must truly love God!
To teach the children that:
Encourage the children to find a place of prayer to prepare their hearts for God's message. This a great time to model the importance of prayer by gathering the leaders together to pray for the service. Remember that prayer is vital to our ministry. Open the service in a group prayer.
It is very important to review the rules on a weekly basis. It is also good to remind them of the reasons for the rules occasionally too. We need to pay closer attention to enforcement of rules as a controlled environment fosters a better learning environment. Pod leaders should pay special attention to monitoring their children's behaviour.
Worship is a very special part of our relationship with Christ, not only for adults but also for children. They need to experience that same intimacy with Christ. Encourage them to demonstrate their love for Christ through their worship.
Theme song: God's got an army marching through this land.
Introduce the theme and the characters, the knight, the damsel, the enemy, the king, and the cook in the King's Court. The court jester doesn't respond right away when he is called out to be introduced.
The damsel is stolen by the enemy as she is introduced. She screams as she is taken away by the enemy for the knight in shining armour to save her. He calls to her of his true devotion to her, of his deep love for her, and of his undying devotion to save her. Then he proceeds to ignore her plight. He piddles around, looks for a snack, etc explaining to the kids that he will save her when he gets around to it. While he says he loves her, his actions show otherwise. The king can intervene and explain to the knight that when you truly love someone you must be willing to sacrifice and do whatever it takes. Our actions are a good indicator of the sincerity of our hearts. When we truly love Christ with our whole hearts our actions will show that.
The court jester comes running out carrying on as a joker as usual. He gets so busy showing off that he loses his pants because he forgot to wear his suspenders or belt. This will allow you to introduce the idea that a belt is very important.
Tet a tet by Carmen as a puppet song. Use a girdle to sing the chorus.
Over the next eight weeks we will be memorizing Ephesians 6:10-18 This week we will be focusing on verses 13-14a and reviewing verses 10-12. The town crier comes out with a royal decree again that all citizens of the Celebration kingdom must learn the verse. The new portion is posted on the castle wall and the knight in shining armour attempts to teach it to the children. Once you have practiced it several times allow two volunteers who can say the verse come up. Allow them to shoot a toy bow and arrow at a target to win a prize if they hit the target.
Huge pants relay: you will need a very large pair of pants for each team. Set up an obstacle course. The teams line up. The first person puts on the pants and must run the course and back and then hand the pants to the next player. The team to have all of it's team mates complete the course wins. The spiritual parallel is that it is hard to run the race when your pants keep falling down. Like a belt holds up our pants, truth of heart holds our relationship with Christ together.
Hula hoop competitions: Have volunteers come up to compete in hula competitions to see how long they can keep a hula hoop up around their waists.
Tell the story of the Rich young ruler. He wanted to serve God, but wasn't willing to truly love God from his heart.
You will need Velcro for this object lesson. Talk about how Velcro was created to hold things together. One piece of Velcro is useless, it takes two pieces. Christ is like one side of Velcro and we are the other. We aren't any good to God if we don't love him with our whole hearts. Our sincerity of hearts holds us to Christ!
Bobo comes up with a girdle. (What you girdle around your heart has power over you)
Weird noises are coming from the puppet stage. It is Bobo talking funny because he has a girdle on very tight and can hardly talk.
Leader: Hey Bobo, what's wrong back there? Are you ok?
Bobo: (talking very funny and high pitched) OOOHhhh hello, ummm, nope, nutins wrong.
Leader: You sound very funny today. Are you sick or something?
Bobo: Oh, no, I'm not sick or nutin. It's just this girdle thing...
Leader: A girdle???? What are you talking about?
Bobo: (stands up a little further to display a girdle fastened around his waist.) This! Don't you know what a girdle is?
Leader: Well, of course I do. It's a cloth thing that is fastened around a ladies middle and tightened to make her look thinner. I understand they are very uncomfortable.
Bobo: Well, you can say that again. This thing is killin me.
Leader: So, why are you wearing a girdle?
Bobo: It's because I am soooooooo smart. I read in the Bible that you need to girdle yourself with truth so I wrote truth on a little paper and girdled it on. I didn't know it would be so uncomfortable though. I don't know if I will be able to keep myself girdled in truth for much longer.
Leader: I'm glad to hear you are reading your Bible Bobo. However, I think you misunderstood that verse. That verse means that just like a girdle holds things together, you need to be held together by a sincere relationship with Jesus.
Bobo: Let me get this straight; I don't need this itchy uncomfortable thing? All I need is to be sincere in my relationship with Christ?
Leader: That's right Bobo.
Bobo: (squealing with delight) hip hip horray, yippy, yippy I ay!!! Oh boy, I can't wait to take this crazy thing off! I hate to chat in run, but I need to change. (Rushes off squealing with delight)
You will need safety pins and small beads that will fit on the pins in black, red, white, green, and gold or yellow. Have pod groups gather together and discuss what true love is. Take time to explain that Christ showed us true love when he died for us. We in turn need to show true love to Christ with sincerity of heart by our actions, thoughts, and lives. Have kids slide a bead of each color onto a safety pin in the above order. The black represents the sin that was in our hearts, the red represents the blood Jesus shed for us on the cross, white the cleansing we receive at salvation, the green represents growing in Christ, and the gold represents our promise of heaven for truly serving God. Have the kids pin the safety pin to their shoe as a reminder to love God with their whole heart as He loves them.
The cook comes out with several eggs, an egg separator, a clear bowl, and a fork. The yolk represents the heart of a person. The white represents sin. The cook shows how when the yolk is in tact it can be separated from the white by an egg separator. However if you prick the egg yolk it mixes with the white and can no longer be separated from the white. When our hearts are not wholly committed to Christ we get mixed up with sin. We need to separate our selves from sin by whole heartily loving God.
Take time to review what has been learned today. This can be done by reviewing the goals for the week. Is your heart true to God? Have you failed God serving him half heartedly? Cut a large heart from butcher paper. Using self stick Velcro circles, attach one side of the Velcro to the heart. Attach the other side of the circles to small hearts. As the kids commit to serve God whole heartedly, have them come forward and write their name on a small heart and attach it to the large heart.
Copyright 1998, Sheryl Coats