Interactive Group Activities
by Carol Williams & Charles Kirkpatrick

Sermon Title: "You Are Invited"

Scripture Reading: Matthew 22:1-14

EXCUSES GAME: Have children sit in a circle with a big ball! A child will toss the ball to another player and give an excuse that they can think of. The child who catches the ball will then give an excuse and roll or toss the ball to someone else, etc.Children will begin to realize how funny excuses sound. Begin to tell the story.

TEACHER WITH EXCUSES: The teacher can start the class with EXCUSES, such as I can't take attendance because I don't like this pencil, I can't write on the chalk board because the chalk is too short, or I can't get your construction paper because my back hurts, I can't open this can of cookies because the lid is on too tight, etc. Children will begin to get the LESSON VERY QUICKLY!

THEME IN CHALK: Write our theme today on the chalkboard but leave out many letters for children to guess at during the lesson. After someone has guessed the theme words of MAKING EXCUSES TO GOD, let children children write their own names on the board if they have ever made excuses.

R.S.V.P. 2 GOD BOOK MARKER: Children can cut out letters R - S - V - P and glue them to another piece of paper in the shape and size of a book marker. Give children markers to write the 2 GOD and write Matthew 22:1-3. Hole punch the top and let children put a ribbon in the top of the book marker.

BIBLE INVITATIONS: Give children pages to staple together to form a BIBLE (the cover can be a colored piece of construction paper and the pages can be white. Children can write one of the invitations from our lesson, on each page of their BIBLE INVITATIONS (written on the cover of their "Bible"), such as Rev 22:17, Matthew 11:28, Matthew 19:14, Matthew 16:24, Hebrews 4:16, John 6:35, Isaiah 1:18, Isaiah 55:3, Psalm 101:2, Mark 10:14 and John 7:37.

PLAY DRESS UP: Give children choices of dressing up like a KING, or a Bride or as servants. After being dressed up, let them recite and try to memorize the verse. Take a picture of the kids all dressed up to put in a frame the next week! The teacher could have a large poster board with the Bible verse written out on it, to have the children hold while taking the picture.

PARTY TIME: After listening to the Bible story today, let children have a short "party time" with the dress up, balloons, whistles, party hats and music and some treats in a basket, etc. Review the story about people not wanting to come and that others were invited and had a great time. Ask the children who the KING was in the story and who was His Son and what INVITATION does Jesus send to US? THANK JESUS for inviting us to come and receive the FREE gift of life which He offers.

FREE GIFT: The teacher can have a gift wrapped for each child to take home at the end of class. Tell the children that it is a FREE GIFT from the teacher. On the gift TAG, the teacher can write, RECEIVE GOD'S FREE GIFT OF SALVATION, or another Bible verse or saying about today's lesson, as teacher chooses.

Song:  "I Have Decided to Follow Jesus" 

Words and Music (pdf)

MP3 Accompaniment Track

About Carol Williams
Carol and her husband have served churches in Illinois, Minnesota, Mississippi, Michigan, and Indiana.  Carol loves to work with children so you will find her teaching in Junior Church and children's Sunday School.  She also has clowning ministry in which she is known as Bubbles tc (the clown).
 
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