|Theme:||Making sure our values are right. (6th Sunday after Epiphany, Year C)|
|Object:||Three items and price tags for each. Suggestions: A book, a CD or DVD, an Etch A Sketch game.|
|Scripture:||God will bless you when others hate you and won't have anything to do with you. God will bless you when people insult you and say cruel things about you, all because you are a follower of the Son of Man. Long ago your own people did these same things to the prophets. So when this happens to you, be happy and jump for joy! You will have a great reward in heaven. Luke 6:22-23 (CEV)|
There is a television game show called "The Price is Right" that has been on the air for fifty years. Perhaps some of you have seen it. On the show, the contestants play various games in which they must guess the correct price of different items. One of the games they play is the price matching game. Here is how it is played: There are several different items and price tags. The contestants have to match the correct price tag with each item.
I thought it might be fun to see how well you might do playing "The Price is Right," so I have brought several items and price tags. We will see if you can match each item with the correct price tag. (Allow some time for the children to match price tags with the items you have brought.) That was fun, wasn't it? As you can see, it isn't always easy to decide what the right price is. You have to have a very good sense of the value of things. That is not only true in playing "The Price Is Right," it is also true in real life.
Many people have some really mixed up values about what is important in life. For example, some people might think that the most important thing in life is to be popular. They will do anything to be popular and they will eventually discover that they have put too high a price tag on popularity.
There are other who people think that being rich is the most important thing in life. They are even willing to lie, cheat, and steal if that is what it takes to get rich. They will discover that if being rich is more important than being honest, then the price tag is way too high.
Jesus did not want us to be confused about what is important in life. One day he taught a lesson to teach what is really important. He taught that devoting your life to seeking wealth, happiness, and popularity would leave you empty.
Well then, what is the most important thing? Jesus taught that the greatest reward comes by following Him and making him the Lord of your life. But it has a price tag on it. He warned that other people might not like you, they might exclude you from their circle of friends, they might talk about you behind your back. But, don't worry, Jesus said you will have your reward in heaven. That has the highest price tag of all, but Jesus paid the price!
Dear Jesus, there is no greater thing than knowing and following you. Thank you for paying the price so that those who do follow you will have their reward -- forgiveness for sin and eternal life in heaven. Amen.
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