Thursday, July 22, 2010

Acts 14 a

Oh...right...I was going to post these wasn't I...

Someone was looking for activities for Acts 14 (NIRV). There's the very short story in the middle of the chapter that's often told in Sunday School about Paul (God - no Paul is not God. No, God is not Paul...God, through Paul) healing the man. (vs 8-10). I think there's even a song for that story. I like songs for remembering the words & stories of scripture. Paul was talking, the man was listening. His legs were crooked. He'd never walked. For me the striking thing about this story is that, for whatever reason, Paul looked right at the man and saw faith. Faith to be healed. What does faith look like? What did Paul see? If asked the questions, adults will tell you one thing but what will children say? What does faith look like? Paul said the word and the man was healed.

What changes when you've spent your entire childhood and adulthood lying down, sitting, or being carried and suddenly you can walk? I say "suddenly" but I'd guess it takes times for muscles to begin to work strong all the time. But what changes for you - things that are good, thing that are easier and things that aren't. Individually, socially . . . Scripture doesn't really say. Just that God did what He did.

The rest of that chapter might be worth exploring with older kids. When you start reading Acts keep a list of the strengths & weaknesses of recurring characters ie. Paul & Barnabus. By the time you get to Acts 14 you'll have a more multi-dimensional view. You could do that with places & people groups too or find out more in reference resources. What do you know about Jews & Non- Jews (Gentiles) that might affect your understanding of this story?

When you finish a story ask your kids, "What can we do or make to remember this story?" Maybe they go home and think about it and come in the next week with their materials & a plan. When they finish, let them share what they've made or the activity they've thought of. Some teachers & children will it very hard to do this - to break out of that very directive classroom mode to more of a discovery- self-directed approach. I say "self" but you will probably be surprised to see what God can do. You'll learn more about the kids and how they interact with God and the scriptures. The kids will learn more about each other and their God-given uniqueness.

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