Playing With Play-Doh Week Three “Why did you make me like this?”

Here I’m making a bowl. Jessica helped me form the circle and I’m rolling it around.Bowl2

Bowl1

Bowl2

 

 

Bowl5

 

 

 

Bowl6

Bowl7

Bowl 4

Bowl5

Here are all the steps it took for me to make a bowl. Here’s the finished product. Notice how the edges are not formed perfectly. That’s okay. I did it myself. It’s my own unique creation. How would you feel if you made something and that thing talked back to you and said, “I don’t like the way I’m made.” How would you feel after you did all that work? Imagine how the Lord must feel when we take this pill and that pill trying to fix the body parts we don’t like on ourselves. His feelings must be really hurt. Romans 9:20-21 says, “ But who are you, a human being, to talk back to God? “Shall what is formed say to the one who formed it, ‘Why did you make me like this?’” Does not the potter have the right to make out of the same lump of clay some pottery for special purposes and some for common use?” Lord, forgive us when we use the world’s beauty products to fix ourselves and tell you you’ve made a mistake. You NEVER make mistakes. Help us to recognize the unique and special purpose you’ve designed for each one of us for and to use our gifts and talents to honor you. Amen.

Activity /Discussion for 5th and 6th grade Awana or Sunday School. Talk to the kids about what some of their gifts and talents are. What are some ways the kids can use their gifts and talents to honor the Lord? Talk about the parable of the talents found in Matthew 25:14-30. Encourage kids to use their gifts and talents to honor the one who gave them to them in the first place, and thank the Lord for their abilities.

Playing With Play-Doh Week Two “Before I formed you, I knew you.”

Today Jessica and I played with play-doh again. This is me smoothing out the rough edges in the center of the play-doh with the rolling pin. I’m very focused. Jessica first handed me the play-doh and said, “Flatten it.” Then I did what you see here. I had trouble applying the right amount of pressure at first. Then Jessica said, “Pretend there’s treasure underneath and you’re digging for chocolate.” Then I was able to do it just right. My brain relates well to candy. Jessica knows me well!

Play-doh 2 week 2

Play-Dioh1 week 2

Here, I’m working on isolating my fingers one at a time and making fingerprints in the play-doh. It wasn’t easy, especially with the pinky! It kept wanting to sneak in at the same time as my ring finger. Jessica had to help me hold it back. Notice how all the fingerprints are unique. None of them are alike. Each one is unique which is what makes them special. As Christians, God calls us to be different from the world and not conform to their ways. That means in everything we do even the way we think about our outer appearances. I don’t have a problem with wearing makeup. I wear makeup sometimes for special occasions. However, I have a problem when women spend five or six hours in the bathroom putting on make-up every day just to look like their favorite movie star. The reason people look the way they do on t.v. is due to technology that’s in the studios. No one ever has, “The perfect look.” There will always be something you don’t like about your body if you focus on it that much. Instead, people should focus on whether or not their hearts are right with the Lord. God doesn’t make mistakes. Jeremiah 1:5 says, “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you. before you were born I set you apart; I appointed you as a prophet to the nations.” Amen! Thank you, Lord, that I am fearfully and wonderfully made by you. Help me to be a shining light for you that makes a difference in the world!

Activity/Discussion for  5th and 6th grade Awana or Sunday School Do I did with the play-doh. Have the kids make their own fingerprints in it and talk about how each fingerprint is unique. Have the kids pray and thank Got they’re fearfully and wonderfully made. Have a conversation about how each person is a gift because of their uniqueness. That’s how we learn from each other. God is the master artist.

Am I A Mistake? A Lesson About Depending On God In Hard Times

Here’s another Bible Lesson I wrote for kids. The model for this lesson is taken from this website. http://ministry-to-children.com/freedom-from-sin-lesson/ I thought I would write for them when I saw a Help Wanted Ad and then I found out that was old and the company isn’t hiring anymore. Again, if anyone knows of a company, please let me know. Thanks for reading! Enjoy!

Am I A Mistake?

Age Range: 7-12

Key Verse: 2 Corinthians 12: 8-10 “Three times I pleaded with the Lord to take it away from me. But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.”

Gospel Connection: We live in a where people are expected to have “The Perfect body.” The right height, slim legs, etc. What happens what someone has legs that don’t run very fast or hands that don’t quite work like everyone else’s? Does God make mistakes? Talk about the story of the apostle Paul. It wasn’t until he was blinded by the light that he became a Christian and started depending on God.

Aim: Talk to kids about how God designed us to be made in his own image. He doesn’t make mistakes. Point unique traits about each person and tell them how our differences are what help us learn from each other about God’s goodness. Our heart is what really matters. God values a person who fears his name more than our outer appearances. When we are weak then he is strong. His power is made perfect in our weakness.

Start a conversation. Ask kids when they remember having difficult times in their lives and when did they do during those difficult times? Did they pray and talk to God? Remind them that God is there in times of trouble.  Sing “Jesus Loves Me.” Close in a time of prayer thanking God for being strong in our weaknesses and thank him that his word says, “All things work together for good.” (Romans 8:28. NIV)

Basic supply List: Come in an exercise suit ready to face hardship head on. Have kids participate in exercises. Do sit ups, push-ups, and jumping jacks, ten each. Reach for the toes, do neck stretches, reach your arms your arms up to the sky and get ready to face any hardship life might bring. Maybe even bring weights or barbells any kind of portable exercise equipment you have at home. By the end of the lesson kids should know that real strength is found in depending on God for our hardships and no one is a mistake.

Other Ideas: Another scripture to talk about is 2 Corinthians 12 15:21 where it says, “Now if the foot should say, “Because I am not a hand, I do not belong to the body,” it would not for that reason stop being part of the body. And if the ear should say, “Because I am not an eye, I do not belong to the body,” it would not for that reason stop being part of the body. If the whole body were an eye, where would the sense of hearing be? If the whole body were an ear, where would the sense of smell be? But in fact God has placed the parts in the body, every one of them, just as he wanted them to be. If they were all one part, where would the body be? As it is, there are many parts, but one body.

The eye cannot say to the hand, “I don’t need you!” And the head cannot say to the feet, “I don’t need you!”  On the contrary, those parts of the body that seem to be weaker are indispensable, and the parts that we think are less honorable we treat with special honor. And the parts that are unpresentable are treated with special modesty, while our presentable parts need no special treatment. But God has put the body together, giving greater honor to the parts that lacked it, so that there should be no division in the body, but that its parts should have equal concern for each other.  If one part suffers, every part suffers with it; if one part is honored, every part rejoices with it.”

God wants us to use the body he has given us to glorify him. Whether or not you have a “normal” body like everyone else really doesn’t matter. There’s so much out there that if we waste time trying to be “perfect” It’s never going to happen!  Instead of always trying to fix what we don’t like about ours elves, we should be asking, “How can I use what I have to glorify God my Creator?” Encourage the kids to thank God that they are fearfully and wonderfully made. Ask how can I serve others and the church in the body I have? No matter how many parts work, there’s something everyone can do to honor the Lord.

Author’s Note: I talk about hands that don’t work or feet that don’t walk like everyone else’s because I have cerebral palsy. I use a wheelchair. If someone is in a wheelchair or cannot stand because they have a physical limitation, have them do jumping jacks by bringing their arms straight up, and then touching their hands together. Have them lift their legs one at a time.  Maybe have them bring their arms straight up and then bend the elbows behind their head. Have them bring one arm straight up and stretch over to the other side and then do the same thing with the other arm.  Fingers exercises where they open and close their hands. They may not be able to do everything everyone else is doing, but that’s okay. It’s another great way to show the kids they are fearfully and wonderfully made. Each child should do what he or she can based on his or her ability. That’s all part of being a part of the body of Christ. As my mother tells me, “Focus on what you can do, rather than on what you can’t.” Have fun with it!

 

Playing with Play-Doh Week One The Importance of Forming A Solid Biblical Foundation

Yesterday Jessica and I played with Play-Doh. I know It’s summer, but I’m already thinking about another lesson for my Awana kids. We live in a world where the media is after girls especially to look “perfect.” The right height,  slim legs. etc. I want to communicate that we are fearfully and wonderfully made by God. Each one of them is perfect in his eyes. The Bible has a few verses where it talks about how God is the potter and we are the clay such as in Jeremiah 18:-3-4, where it says, “So I went down to the potter’s house, and I saw him working at the wheel. But the pot he was shaping from the clay was marred in his hands; so the potter formed it into another pot, shaping it as seemed best to him.” I want to talk to the girls about how God doesn’t make mistakes. Over the summer, my friend Jessica will be coming to my house every Monday. I will be playing with Play-Doh trying to see what I can make. Every week you will see pictures and read about the different exercises we did with my hands.  Join me on my journey as I work with Play-Doh. I’m excited to see what hands will do!

 

Play- doh My fingers tend to have a hard time gripping things and holding on especially with my left hand. Jessica had me hold the book. upright with all my fingers. Many times my Index finger is what I call “The flying finger” because it sticks up while all my other fingers are on the object. I have to practice what’s called Internal and external rotation with my hands. That means turning my hands inward and outward flipping my palms over. When I had trouble getting my fingers to grab the book Jessica said, “Imagine you don’t have magical hands that can go through a wall.” I laughed. I know what you’re thinking. “What does this have to do with playing with play-doh?” We’re trying to work on finger dexterity. When I hold the rolling pin. all my fingers need to be wrapped around it firmly so I can push it.

Activity/ Discussion for 5th and 6th Grade Awana or Sunday School. This is an activity that should be done outdoors. Get a bag of sand and stack legos. See how well the legos stand in the sand. Try just making a tower. Talk to the kids about the Importance of having a firm foundation in their Christian walk Talk about the parable of the wise man and the foolish man found in Matthew 7:24-25. Sing the song about the wise man and the foolish man. Our hearts are more pliable to what God wants to do in our lives if we have a solid foundation in Christ like the wise man.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Narrow Is The Gate The Skit I Did For My Awana Kids

This is the skit I performed for my 5th and 6th grade Awana girls. They loved it! There was lots of laughter. It actually rained that night and the brown paper actually got stuck on my tires. April Larsen, our room director, actually had to work to pull it off. How perfect! At the end I told the kids they got to see what happens in real life. The Lord has a sense of humor! I’d like to submit this to a company who writes Bible Lessons and skits for kids. If anyone knows of a good market for this, please let me know. Writing Bible lessons and skits for kids would be my ideal job. Enjoy! P.S. This video is only the first half of the skit. Unfortunately, my co-leader’s phone ran out of power. Fortunately, you can see the entire skit written down here. Notice how huge my wheelchair is. That’s why I have such a hard time staying on the narrow pathway sometimes. I’m still not perfect at it but I’ve gotten a lot better at it with time. It’s what gave me the idea to write this Bible Lesson.The narrow pathway in the back entrance of my home can be used as a great analogy that applies to the Christian life.

Gate
This is the narrow gateway going into my home. It’s very difficult to stay on the narrow pathway with my huge wheelchair.

 

 

 

Muddy Tirees
What happens when I’m not paying attention and have my wheelchair on rabbit speed.
Cleanimg Tires

While the mud on my tires can be hosed down and wiped off, the same thing can’t always be said for the consequences for our choices in life. That’s why it pays to stay on God’s narrow pathway. Staying on the narrow pathway helps us stay out of the mud and avoid regrets later.

 

NarrowSkit overview

Have a caution sign. “Narrow Road Ahead. Drive slowly.”  The Bible says. “We live by faith not by sight.” (2 Corinth. 5:7). “Danger” is my middle name! I got this! Here I go full speed ahead!  Driving too fast I get stuck in the mud. Oh no! My wheelchair is stuck. Now what?

Discussion Questions

What do you think it means to live by faith not by sight?

Be careful about choices you make in life you may regret it. How are you going to explain to God about your choices? Romans 8:1-8. Following the narrow path way you have true sight. What does God promise to do with our do with our unknown paths when we follow him? Isaiah 42:16

Why does the world see us as narrow minded? 2 Corinth. 4:4. & John 15:18

How should we respond to those that don’t like us? Matt. 5:44

Closing: Talk about social media- intolerant/narrow minded. We can be a light at how we respond. Follow the narrow path and you won’t get stuck in the mud.

Key verse Matt 7:13-14

Script

“Boy it sure is rainy tonight. “Caution Narrow Road Ahead.  Drive slowly.” Oh well, I’m not worried. The Bible says, “We live by faith not by sight.” See my bumper sticker? “Danger” is my middle name! I live for adventure! I got this! Here I go full speed ahead! I’m walking by faith not by sight or should I say rolling by faith. Uh- Oh, What happened? I’m stuck.  Oh no! I can’t go. Help Help! Oh God, Please send someone to help get me out of the mud. I can’t do it on my own. Without you I am nothing. Amen.

April comes to help get me out of the mud.

“Hi. Can I help you?”

“Yes please.”

“What happened?”

“I was driving too fast and I didn’t see the mud hole now my tires are stuck and I can’t move. I need help pushing my wheelchair out of the mud.”

“Okay, let me see what I can do.”

April pushes the chair but it doesn’t move. I push my chair forward and pull back many times. Finally after much effort the chair is free from the mud.

“Look at those tires. What a mess! Now we have to hose them down and scrape them off. While we get the mud off my chair why don’t you look and see what the Bible has to say about narrow pathways. I’ll be back as soon as I get cleaned up.”

Discussion questions and then we come back after the mess is cleaned up.

“I finally got my tires all cleaned up. Guess I should’ve paid more attention to that sign. Next time I see a sign that says, “Narrow road” I’ll slow down and my chair won’t go off the path. Maybe I should wear a hard hat with a light. The good news is I’m out of the mud! Thank you April for helping me get out of the mud.”
“No problem. Anytime.”

“I guess I have a lot to learn about what “live by faith not by sight” means. I need to read my Bible more. I know Matthew 7:13 says, “Narrow is the gate.” I need to learn how to slow down, think things through and then I won’t get stuck in the mud.”

“Good idea.”

“Lord, help me to learn to follow your narrow pathway so my choices are pleasing to you. Give me true sight so I can be a light for you.” Amen.

Closing: Talk about social media.  Intolerant/ narrow-minded Quote John 14:6. God’s way is narrow. We can be a light by how we respond and maybe bring our friends to Christ. God has all the answers to all of our problems. If we think we have it bad, look at how Jesus got mocked on earth.  People hung Him on a cross because they didn’t like what He was teaching. Yet on the cross He said, “Father, forgive them for they do not know what they’re doing.” It’s because of what happened on the cross that we have hope of eternal life. It’s because of the narrow pathway God made for us through His son that we can share the good news. A Christ-like should be our response inwardly as we pray for unbelievers. Because of Jesus, we can face tomorrow! Jesus didn’t say the Christian Life would be easy!  John 16:33,

“I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world.”

Our eternal future is in his hands when we stay on the narrow path and follow God’s way.

I live in The Bungalows which has a very narrow pathway. If I have my speed up too much and I’m not paying attention, I get my wheelchair tires stuck in the mud. Then my mom has to hose down the tires, scrape off the mud and dry the chair. Sometimes I have to leave my chair outside and transfer to my walker. The Christian life is the same way. When we really take the time to get to know God and follow His way, we find that God’s way is less muddy and we have fewer regrets. You don’t want to look back on a decision you made later and say, “Why did I do that?” When we follow God’s way that will happen less. Instead of asking, “Why?” We can say, “Thank you Lord for opening my eyes to the ultimate pathway.”

Activities

Make a narrow road on construction paper. Write God’s Way on the narrow pathway. Draw a wheelchair stick person. Talk about how there are two pathways. On the second Pathway write Man’s Way. Talk about how often the wider pathway looks more fun but leads to bad decisions and regrets later on life. Friends who don’t encourage us to make good choices such as disobeying our teachers or parents, or using foul language, or going on a questionable website. If the wheelchair goes too fast and off on the wide pathway, it will get stuck in the mud and then have to be cleaned off. God’s narrow pathway leads to joy, hope, a bright future, and keeps us out of the mud.  Then talk about how there are consequences for our actions when we don’t follow God’s narrow pathway. Even though God does forgive us when we confess our sins, the consequences for our choices can’t always be wiped away. That’s why it pays to stay on God’s narrow pathway.

Use the Discussion Questions as a guide to interact with the kids.