You have found a great resource for parents/careers and grandparents to use with their little ones during online or face to face worship, or to use as family devotions during the week.
If you are worshipping on line and are unsure what to do with the “little ears” worshipping with their parents, please feel free to make these suggestions during your service so the young ones too can participate.
If at home you might like to make a space for worship it can be permanent or bought out at times of sharing faith together. We are in the season of After Pentecost, the longest season, and it’s colour is green.
You might like to place a green tablecloth on the dinner table or coffee table, or a white one with green ribbons.
It need be no more complicated than that!
OR you could add a cross, or something that talks to you about faith, such as your Bible.
You can even add a candle (with young children around I like to use the battery operated kind.)
START WITH: THE LORDS PRAYER IN ACTIONS https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tOugEQpcc_k OR https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lMjm93ylL2w
Or slot it in when the congregation says The Lords Prayer, if you are in a face to face service, or zooming in from Home.
FIRST READING: EXODUS 32:1-14
READ: The Lion Story Bible, The Golden Calf, p.56
Tell the story: At the moment there is an ad on our Tv’s where a young girl gives all her possessions for a block of cholcolate to give her mum for her Mum’s birthday. She carefully hands over each treasured item, stopping briefly to have a last look until she hands over her last precious item, you can see it is a struggle but the end cause, the present for her Mum is worth it. This is not the usual payment for a bar of chocolate, but the shopowner is a sensitive guy who sees the worth of the girls treasures, and allows her to make this special purchase for her Mum. I remember buying a special present for my mum at the corner shop. Every last coin I had, I used to buy this treat for my Mum. So maybe I relate only too well to the young lady in the ad. Because I feel my excitment in buying my Mum this unexpected treat and the sacrfice of giving all I had.
For me, in this weeks Bible verse I see the same, emotions as myself and the little girl. Here are the Isrealites so wanting of a god, that they surrended all they had, possibly even the very last things they had taken when they had fled Egypt; to make a god, like they had seen other nations worship.
This was all happening while Moses, was up the mountain. While he wasn’t leading them. But he was talking to God. He understood that the God he had obeyed and who found him and whom he converesed with, was a different experience to the gods that had been encountered on their wanderings, and so he speaks up in defence of these people that have followed him out of Eygpt. And God listens.
I wonder if you have anything so important that you could give it away for something/or someone important to you?
I wonder what God wants of us?
I wonder what you would change in this story, but still keep the essence of the story?
DO: How would you respond to this story? What would you paint, draw, write about?
How do you talk to God?
How do you listen?
FOR PARENTS: A good book on Children’s Prayer lives is Children’s Prayer: Multi-faith Perspectives by Vivienne Mountain https://www.amazon.com.au/Childrens-Prayer-Vivienne-Mountain-ebook/dp/B01ITU0LM4
A wonderful blog with many examples of differnet ways to pray: https://flamecreativekids.blogspot.com/search?q=Prayers
HOW DOES THIS PSALM MAKE YOU FEEL? Describe those feelings, Show how these feelings look like in your body or draw it, or point out what it feels like from a set of emotional cards https://innovativeresources.org/resources/card-sets/bears-cards/ or the Bears App https://innovativeresources.org/resources/digital-applications/bears-app/
SECOND READING: PHILLIPIANS 4:1-9
READ/WATCH: Susie Pooles Whatever is lovely https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y6IzYbY5hkU
OR Catching Thoughts by Bonnie Clark https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2Op4fcSgjcs
SING: Busy Busy Busy Busy by Snack Music https://www.snackmusic.com.au/songs/busy-busy-busy-busy
COLOURING-IN: I have always recommended Illustrated Ministry’s work, though I prefer free stuff, I have found their work very reflective of how I find meaning in the passages, but more importantly I have noticed that chidlren of all ages love them and find meaning in them. Their FALL season has started and will give you a colouring in sheet each week until the end of November. It is $US19 for the quarter, and if you have kids that love colouring in it is money well spent COLOURING-IN https://store.illustratedministry.com/products/bible-story-coloring-pages-fall-2020?variant=31882216570978
As a side bar: Note that women are named as co-workers in Vs 2. I wonder what these woman might have said about their work in the early church? you can find out more here https://www.biblegateway.com/resources/all-women-bible/Euodias
GOSPEL READING: MATTHEW 22:1-14
READ: The Lion Story Bible, The Great Feast, pp.188-189 Note that this story is based on teh Luke version, which is a “softer” rendition of the parable
PLAY/DO: If you are still in lockdown you might not be able to have friends over, But you can still think about having a party when you can? I wonder who you would invite? what they should wear? What type of behavour would upset you?
Young ones might like to play tea parties with their toys.
Sometimes we make mistakes
And sometimes those we should admire do
But help me not to make the mistake of
not doing what you want
When you call me