Parable of the rich fool (Luke 12:13-21)
Rich Fool Talk
In today’s reading, Jesus told the crowd a story to teach them what happens when they spend all their time and energy working for things in the world instead of working towards the things of heaven.
How many of you have something that you really want? Maybe a toy or new clothing or something else? (Pause for answers) I know there are things that I would really like to have, like a new car or a trip to France . It’s normal for us to want things, and that’s what the man in the reading wanted too.
But there is a problem with getting what we want isn’t there? If we spend all our time working to get the next new thing, then what time do we have left for Jesus? If Jesus is our friend, then shouldn’t we spend time getting to know him and hanging out with him?
I want to make something clear; it’s ok to have things you like. Jesus doesn’t want to feel bad about having a nice dress or a new toy. But it’s not ok if you spend all your time worrying about things and no time with Jesus.
How would you feel if your friends didn’t want to spend time with you because they would rather play with their new toys? (Pause) I would feel pretty sad. I would probably feel like they didn’t like me anymore.
So what are some things that you can do to make sure that you balance playtime with time with Jesus? (Pause) Well, I think maybe you could set aside a particular time of the day that you spend time praying, or you could try to write down once a day things that you did that were being a friend to Jesus e.g. helped someone with school work they were struggling with, shared my toys, etc. There are lots of ways of making time for Jesus in your life, you just have to find a way that works for you. And you always have helpful adults around like me and your family that can help you to find what works for you.
A fool and his money
Sermons4Kids have a children's sermon for this reading, looking at Jesus' warning against selfishness and greed using marshmallows as an illustration. You can find it here.
Thanks to Visio Lectio for this stunning image this week. Used here with permission from the illustrator, Rev. Sarah West.
- Perspective image craft (Jesus without Language)
- Barn building game (Jesus without Language)
- Race and relay ideas (Sermons4kids)
- Treasure hunt with chocolate coins to lead into a discussion
Treasure in Heaven (Luke 12:32-40)
Thanks to Dunedin Diocese for another Gospel Conversations. We live in anxious times, so what does it mean for Jesus to tell us not to fear? We are aware especially of the anxiety levels in our young people, so it is fortunate that in today's conversation Archdeacon Michael and Bishop Kelvin are joined by two school chaplains: Rev. Mannie Marara joining us for the first time from Hadlow School in Masterton, and Rev. Lucy Flatt returning to our conversations from Craighead School in Timaru.
Luke 12:32-40 Adapted
Once again, Jesus was talking to his disciples to encourage them.
He said: "Don’t be afraid! God wants to give you the Kingdom! Sell everything you have and give the money to people who need it more than you. Make yourselves moneybags that will never wear out. You need to make sure that your treasure is safe in heaven, where thieves cannot steal it and moths cannot destroy it, because your heart will always be where your treasure is.
Be ready like children who wait for their friends to come over for a visit. As soon as they arrive, the children open the door and let their friends in and make their friend feel really welcome.
Be ready always, because you never know when the Son of God will come to visit."
Get a pillowcase and fill it full of ‘treasure’ (paper clips, cellotape, string, etc) You also need a list (that only you can see) of all the things.
What to do
Get each child to put their hands in the pillowcase and without taking anything out, get them to guess what one of the items in the bag is. If they guess right, tick the item off the list. Either see how long it takes them to guess everything. Or let everyone have one turn, and then tip out the contents to find out what they missed out.
On a tray, put lots of different things. Eg pencil, scissors, envelope, feathers, string, paper, etc. Also a piece of paper with ‘Your heart will always be where your treasure is” Cover it with a cloth.
What to Do
Thanks to Rev. Sarah West for this week's gospel illustration, shared with permission.
The most common species of clothes moths in Australia and New Zealand are webbing clothes moths (Tineola bisselliella) and casemaking clothes moths (Tinea pellionella). Adults of both species have golden-coloured wings and are just over half a centimetre long. Clothes moths eat a wide range of animal fabrics, but primarily fabrics containing wool. They will also damage fur, silk, feather and leather.
In this gospel reading, we are reminded to store up our treasures where moths cannot eat them. As a confession, hang up an old woolen coat or jumper and print off some of the moth prints above. Take some time to think through the things that we have accidentally or intentionally stored up that can get in the way of us following Jesus. Perhaps they are items, activities, emotions, stories or relationships. Pin the moth onto the coat/top as a way of asking for forgiveness and receiving God's grace anew.
What you need: Fabric, double sided tape, ribbon or string, treasure bag template, treasure coins template, things to decorate with.
To make the bag:
To make the coins:
- Science activity (Ikidmin)
- Treasure box craft (Emma Tovey)
- Bible verse craft (Mom for all seasons)
- DIY Treasure maps and hunts
- Dig for treasure in sand
- DIY treasure stones (Oh Amanda)
- I spy treasure bottle (Life with God's grace)
Interpreting the Time (Luke 12:49-56)
One of the strengths and difficulties of working with a lectionary is that we don't get to choose the readings we preach on. We have to deal with the difficult ones as well as the ones that make us feel good. Gillian, Andrew and Natalie from the Dunedin Diocese bravely tackle one of these difficult ones with Michael today, and give us plenty of food for thought.