These sessions are designed for parents to use at home with their kids. They are aimed at Primary age children, but you can run the sessions however you like (expand on it, cut bits out - it's your home and your family, after all!) to make it more appropriate for any age group. To make things a little easier, anything in bold below is designed to be read aloud by a parent/adult/leader, and other stuff is intended to help direct as you lead and perhaps dig a bit deeper.
Rescue! Name as many people as you can who might rescue someone. It can be individual people, job titles, roles, whatever! If you want, spend some time drawing your favourite!
Last week we heard about Jesus being betrayed by one of his best friends, Judas, and arrested. Today we're going to find out what happened next, and who Jesus met along the way. Watch the video:
The Bible passage for this session comes from Luke 23, verses 32-34 and 39-43. The Good News Translation is below, or you can use a different translation if you like.
Two other men, both of them criminals, were also led out to be put to death with Jesus. When they came to the place called “The Skull,” they crucified Jesus there, and the two criminals, one on his right and the other on his left. Jesus said, “Forgive them, Father! They don't know what they are doing.”
They divided his clothes among themselves by throwing dice.
One of the criminals hanging there hurled insults at him: “Aren't you the Messiah? Save yourself and us!”
The other one, however, rebuked him, saying, “Don't you fear God? You received the same sentence he did. Ours, however, is only right, because we are getting what we deserve for what we did; but he has done no wrong.” And he said to Jesus, “Remember me, Jesus, when you come as King!”
Jesus said to him, “I promise you that today you will be in Paradise with me.”
If you happen to have paper plates and lolly sticks, take a plate and fold about a third of it up to create a hill. Colour, paint, or stick coloured tissue paper to the area behind the hill to represent the sky, and make three crosses out of lolly sticks.
If you don't have paper plates and lolly sticks, then it's time to get even more creative in the materials you choose to use! Raid your recycling for card, or use some fresh card/paper/whatever you like to recreate the scene.
Once you've done that (using whatever materials), cut a heart out of paper or card. Write "For ME" on the heart, and stick it onto the centre cross.
As for the hill itself, you can either colour it as you did the sky, or you can personalise it by writing, "Jesus died to save (child's name)"
Find a (clean) bucket or basket (or anything you like, or even just use your hands!). For this game, that bucket (or whatever) will be "Heaven"
Then call out items that you know your child(ren) will be able to find around your home. When you call out an item, they race to get that item (or an item fitting that description), and place it in "Heaven". (e.g. a coin; a sock; a key; something green; etc)
It's your Home Sunday School session - play it as many times as you like! And keep score however you like! But remember to congratulate them on rescuing all of those things to Heaven! In the story, Jesus died to rescue the criminal to Heaven. If we ask him to, Jesus will also rescue us to Heaven too.
Or, if you're feeling particularly energetic...
Lord Jesus, thank you for dying on the cross to rescue me. Thank you that you love me and gave everything to save me for Heaven. Amen.