Galatians 5:22 & 23
"But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy , peace, patience,
kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self control. Against
this there is no law".
"When a person accepts Christ, the Holy Spirit comes to live in their
heart. The indwelling of the Holy Spirit produces Christian virtues in
the believer's life. These virtues are the fruit of the Spirit and we
become more Christ-like. We will exhibit the fruit whether we are aware
of it or not, it happens completely through the work of the Holy Spirit.
We can't produce fruit by our own effort, it comes from God's presence
and interaction in our lives."
Offner, Hazel. Fruit
of the Spirit. Downers Grove, Ill: Intervarsity Press, 1987
Objective: The objective of The Zoo Children's Ministry is to reach kids with the Gospel
message and to teach them about God's love and how to live as Christians
in today's world.
The purpose of this particular series is to present salvation and
explain that when they make a decision for Christ the Holy Spirit will
live in their hearts. They can have the fruit of the Spirit begin to
show in their lives.
Themes: We have chosen to divide the fruit of the Spirit into
sets of three. With each set there will be a different theme. All props
and stories will teach the lesson but incorporate the theme.
Wild West Days Theme
"Wild West Days" is an exciting theme. A backdrop with
an old western town and a clothes line with wool socks and long johns
helped to create the atmosphere. The puppets were dressed in cowboy hats
and plaid shirts. Children's toys are helpful. Stick horses and stuffed
animals were used as props. Western music also enhances the area.
Lesson Seven Faithfulness
God is always there, even when we are in the midst of troubled times
or just the routine busyness of everyday life. God never leaves and his
hand is on our lives. He has a plan for each of us that will be worked
out in us if we follow him. He will be faithful.
- To teach the children that God is always near.
- To teach them to be faithful to Him.
Opening Act: Puppet Song
A song was used to set the theme and introduce the "Wild West"
idea that was incorporated into the lessons. Song called: "Hallelujah
Yippee Kie Yah" Kids Sing Cowboy Songs c 1994 Brentwood Music Inc.
A western slant to the standard rules makes it more interesting.
Change the wording of the rules: e.g. "Don't bother the cowpoke next
to you." Use your imagination to adapt your rules.
Although new themes are exciting it is important to pray that the
message will be clear and apparent in the midst of the fun. It is after
all the goal of the Sunday School program to introduce the children to
the message of the Bible.
If any songs that the children know can be adapted to have a
country/western flavour this would be effective.
Games: Wild West Theme
Select two players from the girls group and two players from the boys
group. This is an obstacle course game. Each child is given a hobby or
stick horse. They have to ride around the barrels set up in a course and
when they arrive at the last barrel, there are two foam horse shoes to
throw in a bucket. After the two horseshoes are thrown, the contestant
rides back and passes their horse back to the next player.
Select two boy/two girls. One team member is given a bucket and the
other is given a broom. There are sections of hose that are cut up, they
are snakes. One member sweeps the snakes off the stage and the other
catches them in a bucket. The team with the most snakes wins.
The format for this memory verse is slightly different. It is still
an interaction between puppets and people but it is adapted.
Western music plays. The memory verse is delivered by "Pony
Express". It is written on brown paper and wrapped around a brick.
When it is tossed onto the stage, the leader unwraps it and begins to
teach the verse. While they are teaching the verse they stand very close
to the puppet stage and a bandit sneaks up behind them. The puppet wears
a banana over his nose and a cowboy hat. He is known as the "Memory
Verse Bandit". After the verse is taught the Bandit steals it. The
leader calls the sheriff (another volunteer). They post a reward sign
for the Bandit and the Sheriff promises to be back next week to watch
for the Bandit.
This provides the leader with an opportunity to teach the importance
of remembering verses, the importance of hiding them in our hearts.
"It is required in stewards that one be found faithful" 1 Cor
The Bandit is silent so the following is an example of how the leader
goes about teaching the verse.
Leader: Ok kids! It looks like the "Pony Express" just came by. That
is how they used to deliver mail before there were cars. It looks like
they gave us a package. Let's unwrap it. Oh it's the memory verse. Why
don't we learn it? Let's read it together.
Have the children repeat the verse until they can do it without
looking at the sheet.
Parable of the Talents "Wild West Style"
Mr. Winslow is the owner of a horse ranch outside the town of "Fox
Hollow". He has a large stable where he keeps the horses of people who
come to visit the town. He has a number of people that work for him.
Last week he gave each of his workers a job to do before he went on
vacation. He told Cowgirl Ann, who was really good at taking care of the
horses to brush them, feed them, and give them water everyday. Mr.
Winslow told Cowboy Franklin who was really good at cleaning to make
sure that the stables were clean everyday and to make sure the troughs
that horses ate out of were clean too! Mr. Winslow told Cowboy Lucas who
was good at fixing things to fix the broken shutters on the stable
Each had a big job to do and Mr. Winslow expected it to be done when
he returned. So Mr. Winslow left....
Cowgirl Ann was taking care of the horses (she comes up behind the
stage patting the horses).
Cowboy Franklin was busy cleaning ( throw some hay over the stage).
But Cowboy Lucas was sitting back on a bail of hay drinking "sasperilla",
that's like cowboy Kool aid. He didn't do any work and the shutters
Then Mr. Winslow came back from vacation. He called Cowgirl Ann into
his office. "I see that the horses were well looked after while I was
gone, they look healthy and happy. Well done my faithful ranch hand, you
deserve a promotion. I will now let you oversee all of the other people
who work for me."
Then Mr. Winslow called Cowboy Franklin into his office. Well
Franklin, the stables are even cleaner now then when I left. You did
fine work faithful rancher, you deserve a promotion. I will make you the
Ranch hand in charge of the stable."
Then Mr. Winslow called Cowboy Lucas into his office. "Lucas!, what
happened? I can see that the shutters are not fixed. You didn't do any
work the whole time I was gone. I guess I have no choice, you are
fired." And Lucas was asked to leave the Ranch immediately.
The first two ranch hands were very faithful. They did what they were
asked to do and were rewarded for their work. Lucas was not faithful, he
didn't do the job.
Did you know that God gave each and everyone of us talents and
abilities? He expects us to use them for him. We have a job and that is
to be faithful with what he gives us. If we are faithful then we will be
rewarded in heaven and we will make God happy.
Copyright 1996, Bread of Life Ministries