6 December 2020
Bible readings for today
John the Baptist prepared the way,
preaching baptism and repentance;
help us to watch and pray,
listen for the wilderness voices
still crying to be heard,
and respond through Jesus Christ,
who is alive and reigns with you,
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and forever. Amen.
John the Baptist prepares the way for Jesus
An amazing collection of Intergenerational Christmas Service ideas from the Uniting Church in Australia (South Australia), particularly useful for those following the lectionary readings this Advent. The resource can be found on this website or by clicking on the image below
Prayer Of Confession
Supplies: Bowl of water, towel
Today we have heard about John the Baptist and how he was to prepare the way for Jesus.
Does anyone know what it means to be baptized or have been baptized themselves? This bowl of water is a hint!
One way that John the Baptist helped prepare the way for Jesus was by getting people to tell God they were sorry for the bad things they had done and to stop doing these things. John the Baptist would help people to understand the new start they were making by dipping them below water in the river and having them come back up again. This was a way of showing everyone that this person wanted to change the way he or she was living.
We can use this bowl of water today to help us prepare our hearts for Jesus this Christmas.
If you'd like to pray then one by one we will cup our hands with water and let it trickle back into the bowl. This is a sign of us asking God to wash away the things we do that we know we shouldn't. You can wipe your hands dry with the towel and after everyone has prayed we'll finish by praying together...
"Dear God, thank you for the work John did getting people ready for Jesus. We thank you that through Jesus we get a fresh start and power to change the way we live. Please help us to walk in a way that pleases you by the things that we do and the choices we make, especially as we focus on you this Christmas. In Jesus' name, Amen"
Red Light, Green Light
Use this stop/go signpost game to introduce the theme of John the Baptist being a signpost to Jesus.
Supplies: Two circles of card: one red, one green
To play, one person is chosen to be the traffic cop.
All the players stand on the starting line about 5 metres away from the traffic cop who has his back to the rest of the players.
When he says "green light" and holds up the green circle behind his back, players try to run to the finish line to "Win"
But if the traffic cop says "red light," he quickly turns around and players have to stop in their tracks.
If the traffic cop catches a player moving, he sends them back to the starting line.
First person to cross the finish line wins and becomes the new traffic cop.
Debrief: Talk about where children see stop lights (eg: traffic lights, pedestrian crossings, train crossings) and what other signposts they've seen on the road that point out things ahead (eg: school ahead, horses crossing, elderly people ahead). Explain that today we will be hearing about John the Baptist who was like a signpost pointing the way to Jesus coming.