If there is one, single message I want my kids to receive in their early years about God, it is this; God loves you no matter what! He loves you when you are at your best and he loves you when you are at your worst. He is there to talk to during times that you are happy and when you feel low. His love is unconditional!
Here are three simple activities we used with our Experience God Christian Curriculum to help share this message in our family.
1. Unconditional Love
- Brainstorm a variety of bad choices we sometimes make (shout, don’t obey, etc.). Does God love us when we sin?
- Explain that God’s love is unconditional. That means no matter what, he loves you. He might not like what you choose to do, but he will never stop loving you.
- Set out play dough and encourage children to make various shapes and then a ball.
- Explore how there is no beginning or end to the ball; it is the same with God’s love.
Explain: Jesus’s love is unconditional. He loves you no matter what!
2. Flock Art
Ask: How many people are in your family? How many sheep are in a flock?
- Explain that there can be 100 sheep or more in a flock. God wants everyone in his flock.
- A shepherd uses his staff to pull sheep back to him and to protect the sheep.
Invite children to explore and bend the pipe cleaner.
- A shepherd keeps his sheep near.
Invite children to cut their straws into pieces to make beads.
Pretend that the beads are sheep and thread a few beads onto the pipe cleaner.
Connect the ends of the pipe cleaner to make a bracelet to keep all of the sheep safe.
Explain: God has room for everyone in his flock.
Pray: Invite children to wear their bracelets and pray together.
Pray and thank God for all he does for us.
“Lord, you are the good shepherd. Even when we run off and forget where to go, you find us and show us the way back to your path. Thank you for inviting us into your flock. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
3. We Are Like Sheep
- We might hide, but God always finds us.
- God knows us like a shepherd knows his sheep.
- We should always follow God, our good shepherd.
- God sees what we cannot see. We can trust him to keep us safe.
Try This Together: Decorate and Know Your Sheep
Cut apart sheep cards*** and give one to each family member.
Each person decorates his sheep and stacks the sheep in a pile.
Spread out the cards and invite each person to find the sheep he or she decorated.
Discuss how easy it was to find your own sheep. In the same way, God knows and finds us. Now hide the sheep around the room and look for your own sheep again.
***This printable is provided as a courtesy to my readers, the cards we used were from Experience God.
I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep. John 10:11
I hope your family enjoys these activities and that they help spur conversations with your children about our ever loving and gracious God!
***This post was inspired by materials, concepts, and ideas from Experience God, a Christian based curriculum from Mother Goose Time.