By Gail Marsh
You’ll need several empty cardboard boxes (shoe boxes or cracker boxes work well). Stack a set of boxes at one end of the play area. Allow enough space so the students can run completely around them without knocking them over. You’ll also need a playground ball for each team. Use masking tape to mark a “start” line for each team, as well.
Begin by forming teams, each with the same number of players. If needed, plan to play along yourself. Explain the rules: at your signal, the first child from each team will run to the blocks, run around them one time and return to start. The next child in line will repeat the procedure. Play continues until each team member has had a turn.
Then, the first player in line will roll the ball at the stacked blocks, in an attempt at knocking them over. If that child misses, the next child in line will take a turn. And so on. The team whose tower falls first, wins. (Note: if the blocks are accidentally knocked over by runners, that runner must restack them before returning to the line.)
After a few rounds, stop and talk together. In what ways does this game remind you of Joshua’s story in the Bible? How is the game different from the story of Joshua?
Playing games is fun—as long as everyone follows the rules. God gives us rules or a game plan to follow. Where can we find God’s rules? Yes, the Bible tells us about God’s rules. Can you name some of God’s rules? God wants us to obey our parents and teachers; he wants us to obey the laws of our land; God wants us to be kind to others, even when they are not kind to us; he wants us to be honest—not tell lies; and so on.
When we do not follow God’s rules, we sin. Sometimes we don’t feel like obeying our teacher. That’s sin. It’s against God’s rules. There may be times when we tell a lie to keep ourselves out of trouble. Lies are sins, too.
When we sin, we deserve God’s punishment. That would be frightening! But we don’t need to be afraid! When we sin, God does not stop loving us.
What can we do when we sin—disobey God’s rules? Let the children talk about it. When we sin, God helps us. He helps us feel sorry for the wrong things we have done. He reminds us that Jesus died for our sins, that Jesus let himself be punished in our place. Jesus took our consequence, dying for us. Then Jesus rose from the dead! God gives us faith to believe this. Everyone who trusts in Jesus is forgiven. Our guilt, our sins are gone!
Jesus is the strongest warrior of all! He fought sin and death—and won! Jesus has made you a warrior of faith, too. He will help you follow God’s rules.
Editor’s note: Today’s game and devotional thought is slightly adapted from the Warriors of Faith Digital Event Guide for children.
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