Arrival Activity: Draw a picture of your house; Make a model of your house with playdoh or clay.
We talked about Jesus’ homes (heaven, stable, cave, heaven) and his beds (manger). We shared about our homes and our beds. We talked about our favorite rooms in our houses. We talked about what we do in each room.
When we believe that Jesus is a gift from God who died for the sins of the whole world, God sends a helper to us, the Holy Spirit, to live inside of us to show us the way to please and obey God, and share God’s love to help others. WE are the house of the Holy Spirit.
The Bible says one more important thing about houses. It says that Jesus is preparing a house for each one of us in Heaven! He says that one day, we can all live forever with Him there in that perfect, wonderful place! (Luke 1:31-33; John 6:38-40; John 14:1-3)
ASK: Where do you live? (My house) Where in your house do you spend the most time? What is your favorite room in the house?
In the book of Deuteronomy 6:5, God directed His people (are we also God’s people?, so can this apply to us?) He said…
Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength. These commandments that I give you today are to be upon your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at HOME and when you walk along the road, when you lie down, and when you get up. Tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. Write them on the door frames of your houses and on your gates.
Where do you SIT AT HOME?
Where do you WALK ALONG THE ROAD?
Where do you LIE DOWN?
When do you GET UP?
We brainstorm some creative ways to bless our homes using our sight (hang artwork that honors God), sounds (speak prayers out loud – there is power in the spoken word), touch (physically lay hands on the walls, chairs, carpeting, etc.), smell (light a scented candle or bring an open orange because citrus smells make us happy).
Activity: Wrap crosses with wire and beads to be artwork to hang in your home that honors God.
Personal Testimony: I would pray through my kid’s rooms often when they were growing up, especially in middle school. When we purchased a new home, my Emmaus Reunion group came to pray through the house from my son’s bedroom (he asked if his room could be the starting place) out to our mailbox on the street. When #1 Son moved into his new place after graduation from college, he asked if I’d come to pray through it, as well, and every home since then.
We prepared a pamphlet with short prayers that apply to each room of the house and we read some of those prayers together, out loud holding onto our crosses or placing our hands on the walls/doorframes.
One of the youth shared how she’d just gotten the acceptance letter she’d been waiting for from the college of her first choice. She shared how she plans to pray through her home now and her dorm next fall.
Everything about the Christmas story speaks to home, a place to rest, a place of shelter, a place of hope, a place of safety, a home for now. Let’s use this new year reset to lead our littles to a holy habit of praying and the laying on of hands to bless and be a blessing wherever they call home.
Now that you know these things, you will be blessed if you do them.” John 13:17