Focus Passage: Psalm 91
Memory Verse: “When they call to me, I will answer; I will be with them in trouble.”
Items for Preparation
-Bring a few things that protect you: an umbrella, a bandage, a hat, sunscreen, a toothbrush, hand sanitizer, knee pads, a sports helmet, mittens, a (clean!) baby’s diaper. Try to have some funny things, like a wild or silly hat, or fuzzy ear muffs, or leopard print rain boots. Maybe the diaper will do it. Put them all into a large bag so you can unpack them one by one in front of kids as you begin your sermon.
-A small white board, or your mobile device, or poster board, so you can make a list of those who need prayer today.
Read the adult lesson in Nurturing Faith and additional material online. We’ll focus on the idea of God’s love helping us to feel secure and protected. We want to highlight the needs of other people around the world, rather than our own need, for protection.
[Display your protective gear, one thing at a time. Name your items to make sure kids know how they’re used.]
Say: I have a lot of stuff here, and it’s good stuff, because all the things I have are used to do something very important to all of us. Can you think of what all these things do for us? What is the word that all of them have in common? [Allow for answers.]
Say: Yes! Each of these things is used to protect us from something. For instance, how does this helmet protect me? What about the hand sanitizer? How about the diaper? Yeah, it protects me, not just the baby!
Say: In the Old Testament book of Psalms, which is that book of 150 songs, we hear Psalm 91 today, which tells us that God is close to us all the time, and that, when we are in trouble, or need to be protected, and we call to God for help, God will answer our call.
Say: So I’m wondering: can you think of anybody in the world today who is in trouble, and needs the help of God? If we have a special prayer this morning, and call on God for help, so that God can protect people who need help, who do you think needs God’s help? Let’s make a list.
[Allow for children’s responses. Record them as they are mentioned and add some of the following as you go along.]
Say: There are many people who have had bad weather this month, and can’t stay in their houses anymore; they need a warm safe place to sleep. There are people who have traveled out of the country of Syria, and are walking through Europe, so they can find safe places for their families. There are people we know who are sad today because somebody they love is sick in the hospital; some are sad because somebody they love has died. Who else needs to have God’s help and protection? [Allow for final responses.]
Let’s say our prayer now, and call on God, who promises to be present with us when we are having troubles.
Prayer: Say these words after I say them.
O Powerful God,
We call on your name today
To ask for your help and protection
We ask that you will be close
To all the people we have named today
And when we are troubled,
Be close to us too and protect us,
In Jesus’ name, Amen.