Welcome to the first of our "Church at Home" sessions. Hopefully they should provide you with something to do and something to think about with your children as we all seek to continue teaching and continue worshipping in these unprecedented circumstances!
The sessions 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.
(Also, I know Palm Sunday is technically still a couple of weeks away, but as we build up to Easter, it's the most approriate place to start, so that's where we're staring today!)
Who would you love to meet? (It might be a favourite character, celebrity, etc.)
Why do you like them? (Do they have any special powers? Are they funny/kind/adventurous? Talk about why these people/characters are so great and how exciting it would be to meet them.)
Jesus is God's promised King. In today's story, people shouted about Jesus because they were so excited to see him. Watch the video.
The Bible passage for this session comes from Luke 19: 30, 35-40. The Good News Translation is below, or you can use a differnt translation if you like.
Jesus sent two disciples ahead with these instructions: “Go to the village there ahead of you; as you go in, you will find a young donkey tied up that has never been ridden. Untie it and bring it here."
They took the young donkey to Jesus. Then they threw their cloaks over the animal and helped Jesus get on. As he rode on, people spread their cloaks on the road.
When he came near Jerusalem, at the place where the road went down the Mount of Olives, the large crowd of his disciples began to thank God and praise him in loud voices for all the great things that they had seen: “God bless the king who comes in the name of the Lord! Peace in heaven and glory to God!”
Then some of the Pharisees in the crowd spoke to Jesus. “Teacher,” they said, “command your disciples to be quiet!”
Jesus answered, “I tell you that if they keep quiet, the stones themselves will start shouting.”
Now it's time to re-enact the story! And have fun with it - take as long or as little as you like; be as creative, ridiculous or silly as you like!
Jesus is God's promised King. We've just heard about him being welcomed by the crowds in Jerusalem. Most people were so excited to finally get to see Jesus! But some were angry because they didn't accept that Jesus was God's King. They thought he was just an ordinary man.
Jesus is the most important King in the history of the world - but he rode into his capital city on a donkey, without any red carpet or bodyguards. He looked so humble and unimportant, but He is so much more!
Do you have any humble, unimportant recycling? Take some time to convert it into a majestic, powerful, awe-inspiring drum kit! (Or any other instrument you like - or, in fact, anything at all that you want to make! The whole point is to show that what seems humble and unimportant can be far greater than we ever realised!)
Now that you have your recycla-band ready, play and sing along to the video below. Children may know it from Holiday Club 2019. (Or find another worship song to sing as a family - it's entirely up to you!)
The crowds shouted praise to Jesus. What praise would you like to say or shout to Jesus today? Allow the children to praise Jesus using whatever words (and volume) they want.
Read the following prayer aloud, or say your own prayer.
Thank you for our amazing King, Jesus. Thank you that you sent him to teach amazing things and perform amazing miracles which proved that he really was sent by you. Thank you that Jesus didn't come to live in grand palaces and enjoy great riches, but that he came to live a humble life, and to give it up on the cross so that our family and others across the world would be able to life for eternity with you, in Heaven.
If you'd like, you can also finish by saying the Lord's Prayer together (either the following words, or your own words - you may even have your own family Lord's Prayer written out from 2018!):
Our Father in Heaven,
Hallowed be Your Name.
Your Kingdom come. Your will be done on earth, as it is in Heaven.
Give us today our daily bread.
Forgive us our sins, as we forgive those who sin against us.
Save us from the time of trial, and deliver us from evil.
For the Kingdom, the power and the glory are yours.
Now and forever,