Saturday, May 31, 2014

What Does it Mean to Pray? Sunday School Lesson

This lesson will teach very young children the purpose of prayer, through a study of the Lord’s Prayer.

·         Bible
·         Large paper and markers, draw a large triangle on the paper

Seat the kids in a circle, and have them play a few rounds of telephone.
·         The first person thinks of a phrase
·         The phrase gets whispered from person to person, until it reaches the end
·         The last person says out loud what they were told
·         The first person says the original phrase out loud
The phrase will have likely changed, and the more kids in the class, the more it will have changed.

Today we will start to study the Lord’s Prayer. That’s the name of the prayer that Jesus taught to his disciples, when they told him they wanted to know how to pray. Before talking about that prayer, we should talk about what prayer is.

What is prayer? ... What does it mean to pray? ...

Praying is talking to God, through Jesus, by the power of the Holy Spirit.  Let’s talk about how the game of telephone that we just played. When we were playing, what happened to the message after going through the whole group of people? (Allow responses) Aren’t we lucky, that when we are praying, our words go straight to God, and the message doesn’t get garbled?

Read Psalm 139:4

God knows exactly what we are thinking. He knows what we are going to say, before we say it—he even knows what we are going to say before we know! Isn’t that great?

Now, let’s make a prayer triangle!

(Take out/point out the drawing of the triangle; write God the Father at the top) This says “God the Father.” God is like a really great father, who knows exactly what we need, and gives it to us, his kids.

Read Luke 11:13, Romans 8:26

(Label the bottom left corner ‘Holy Spirit’) We just learned that the Holy Spirit can help us with our weaknesses. Since we don’t know exactly how God wants us to pray, the Holy Spirit will pray for us, when we don’t know exactly what words to use. (Highlight the line from the Holy Spirit to God) It’s really great, that we have the Holy Spirit to help us pray for things that we don’t understand yet, isn’t it? The Holy Spirit is one of the best gifts that God has given us!

The last piece of our prayer triangle is Jesus Christ. (Label the bottom right corner ‘Jesus Christ’) 

Jesus made it possible for us to talk to God, when he died for us.

Ever since the first people, Adam and Eve, people have been sinners, and God can’t speak directly with sinners. Jesus dying for our sins washed us clean, and now Jesus helps us talk to God when we pray. As long as we are holding Jesus in our hearts, we can talk to God.

So prayer is talking to God, while holding Jesus in our hearts, with the power of the Holy Spirit. This is how we pray—in a triangle, with the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.

Say the Lord’s Prayer.

Find more Sunday School lesson ideas on our Free Children Sunday School Lesson Helps page.

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