Lesson 1: Fruit of the Spirit: Love 01/27/2023
Classroom: My Classroom
Galatians 5:22; Luke 15:11-32 Leader Guide for Grades 1 & 2

Teachers Dig In

 

Dig In to the Bible

  • Read: Galatians 5:22; Luke 15:11-32
  • In This Passage: Love is a fruit of the Spirit, and we can see God’s loving heart in a story Jesus tells about a father whose son leaves to live wildly. When the son returns home, the father welcomes him with open arms. In the same way, God loves us so much, and his love flows out of us to others!
  • Bible Point: Love is a fruit of the Spirit.
  • Summary Verse: “But the Holy Spirit produces this kind of fruit in our lives: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. There is no law against these things!” (Galatians 5:22-23).

 

Dig Deeper

  • You’ll Be Teaching: Love is a fruit of the Spirit. It’s tempting to teach kids to try to love better. But the fruit of the Spirit isn’t something we try to have; it’s something that grows naturally when we get closer to God. As kids understand God’s love for them, they’ll grow more love in their lives.
  • Think About: Describe God’s love for you. What’s your response?

 

Dig In to Prayer

  • Ask God to inspire your kids with ways to pass his love on.

 

Quick Tip

  • There are some kids who are just plain hard to love. But remember, love isn’t about your own efforts. Love is a fruit of the Spirit. If you’re struggling with hard-to-love kids, ask God to help you see them through his eyes. The more you pray for them, the more you’ll see the good in them. And the more you see the good in them, the more they’ll see the good in themselves.

This Lesson at a Glance

Opening

Kids share about a topic related to the lesson.

Supplies

  • Bible
  • red paper hearts, no smaller than 4x5 inches (1 per child)
  • brown packing paper
  • pencils
  • tape

Easy Prep

  • Use brown packing paper to create a tree trunk and branches on your wall, large enough so each child will be able to add all 9 fruits of the Spirit. Leave the tree up throughout the 9 weeks that you cover the fruit of the Spirit so kids can add a new red paper heart each week.
  • Write the word “love” in large lettering somewhere kids will be able to see it and copy it.

Music Video

Kids sing songs of praise to God.

Supplies

  • “I Have Decided to Follow Jesus” (watch or download here)
  • “Monumental Love” (watch or download here)
  • “Forever God, Forever Love” (watch or download here)

Core Bible Discovery

Kids act out the story and experience overflowing.

Supplies

  • Bible
  • heart stickers (1 per child)
  • “Fake Money” handout (1 for every 12 kids) (download here)
  • pens
  • petroleum jelly
  • tissues
  • box, roughly the size of a copier paper box
  • 6 disposable cups
  • pitcher of water
  • tray or baking pan

Easy Prep

  • Cut apart the bills on the “Fake Money” handout.
  • Put some petroleum jelly on your fingers, and wipe it on a tissue. Then crumple the tissue. Repeat until you have a box full of crumpled tissues.
  • Arrange 5 of the cups in a circle on a tray or baking pan. Set the additional cup and the pitcher of water nearby.

Core Bible at Home

Only available in One Room class format.

 

Talk-About Video

Kids watch a video and discuss the Bible Point.

Supplies

  • “The Lost Grape” teaching video (watch or download here)

Preschool Puppet Skit

Recommended for preschoolers.

 

Object Lesson

Kids test out different ramps.

Supplies

  • wide pieces of cardboard or foam board (1 for every 5-6 kids)
  • masking tape
  • rolling objects like balls or toy cars

Deeper Bible

Kids use a scale to explore God’s unconditional love.

Supplies

  • hanger with notches (1 for every adult or teen helper)
  • 8-ounce paper cups (2 for every adult or teen helper)
  • hole punch
  • yarn (two 2-foot pieces per adult or teen helper)
  • large plastic coins (4 per child)
  • masking tape
  • paper
  • markers (1 for every adult or teen helper)

Easy Prep

  • Punch 2 holes in each paper cup, about 1 inch from the lip of the cup and directly across from one another. Draw a smiley face on half the cups and a frowning face on the other half. Thread a piece of yarn through both holes in each cup and tie the ends together in a loop. Hook each loop on a hanger notch so every hanger has 2 cups hanging from it, 1 smiley and 1 frowning. Draw an arrow on a small piece of paper, and tape it to the hanger above the frowning cup.

High-Energy Game

Kids make cups overflow.

Supplies

  • 18-ounce plastic cups (1 for every 6 kids)
  • brightly colored cotton balls (about 10 per child)
  • buckets or bowls big enough to hold 50-60 cotton balls (1 for every 6 kids)
  • upbeat music (optional)
  • music player (optional)

Easy Prep

  • Place 50 to 60 cotton balls in each bucket.

Low-Energy Game

Kids play a version of Mother, May I?

 

Craft

Kids make wreaths to show their friends and families about God’s welcoming love.

Supplies

  • chenille wires (2 per child)
  • tissue paper (in a variety of colors)
  • glue sticks
  • 8½x11 sheets of card stock
  • scissors
  • markers

Easy Prep

  • Make a sample craft to show kids.

Life Application Wrap-Up

Kids share about how they want to show love and then pray.

Supplies

  • red washable marker

Take-Home

Kids receive a take-home page about the lesson.

Supplies

  • this week’s “Dig In @ Home” handout (1 per child) (download here)

Easy Prep

  • Add your church announcements to the “Dig In @ Home” handout.

*Marked supplies can be reused from Core Bible Discovery

Let's keep kids safe! You can help by using supplies as instructed for only ages 3+, purchasing child-safe items, and being aware of allergy concerns.

Opening [5 min]

Welcome

Supplies

  • Bible
  • red paper hearts, no smaller than 4x5 inches (1 per child)
  • brown packing paper
  • pencils
  • tape

Easy Prep

  • Use brown packing paper to create a tree trunk and branches on your wall, large enough so each child will be able to add all 9 fruits of the Spirit. Leave the tree up throughout the 9 weeks that you cover the fruit of the Spirit so kids can add a new red paper heart each week.
  • Write the word “love” in large lettering somewhere kids will be able to see it and copy it.

Welcome

  • Thank kids for coming.
  • Make announcements.
  • Introduce new kids.
  • Collect the offering.

 

Introduce the Lesson

  • Say: Over the next few weeks, we’ll be learning about something called the fruit of the Spirit. Invite kids to tell where fruit grows. Point to the tree you made ahead of time. Since we’ll be learning about a new fruit of the Spirit every week, we’ll each get to add a new fruit to our tree every week.
  • Give each child a red paper heart.
  • Say: This week we’ll learn that love is a fruit of the Spirit. Have kids copy “love” from where you wrote it ahead of time.
  • Say: Today we’ll find out about God’s great big love for us and how he helps us love others. Since God loves each of you, write your name on your heart, too. Kids may flip their hearts to the side without “love” to write their names.
  • Say: When I say love is a fruit of the Spirit, that means when we’re friends with God, he helps us show love to others. Let’s add our “love fruit” to the tree to remind us that love is a fruit of the Spirit. Lead kids to tape their fruit to the tree.

 

Share

  • Say: As we learn about love today, we’ll hear a story in the Bible about a son who traveled far away from home. He was away for a while, so when he came back, he was very happy to see his family. Let’s talk about times we were happy to come home. Share about a time you were happy to come home. It might be after a long day at work, after a vacation, or when you were sick and you were looking forward to getting in bed.
  • In small groups, have kids share about times they were happy to come home. They might tell about returning home after staying at Grandma’s house for a night. They might also share about being happy to come home after their first day at school or when they missed their parents.
  • After small groups have discussed, have a few kids share with the whole group what they talked about in their small groups.

 

Summarize

            Open a Bible, and say: Most of us are happy to come home every day. The son we’ll read about in the Bible today was away from home for a long time, and when he came home, he learned how much his dad loved him. The dad showed his son so much love! Today we’ll learn more about how love is a fruit of the Spirit and how being friends with God helps us show love.

            Pray, thanking God that love is a fruit of the Spirit that God gives us to share with others.

Music Video [10 min]

I Have Decided to Follow Jesus

Supplies

  • “I Have Decided to Follow Jesus” (watch or download here)
  • “Monumental Love” (watch or download here)
  • “Forever God, Forever Love” (watch or download here)

Tip

  • Don’t have internet in your classroom? That’s okay! You can choose your own worship songs from our Best Of Dig In Music DVD here.

 

Sing Songs to God

            Sing the three songs in any order.

Core Bible Discovery [20 min]

Fruit of the Spirit: Love (Galatians 5:22; Luke 15:11-32)

Supplies

  • Bible
  • heart stickers (1 per child)
  • “Fake Money” handout (1 for every 12 kids) (download here)
  • pens
  • petroleum jelly
  • tissues
  • box, roughly the size of a copier paper box
  • 6 disposable cups
  • pitcher of water
  • tray or baking pan

Easy Prep

  • Cut apart the bills on the “Fake Money” handout.
  • Put some petroleum jelly on your fingers, and wipe it on a tissue. Then crumple the tissue. Repeat until you have a box full of crumpled tissues.
  • Arrange 5 of the cups in a circle on a tray or baking pan. Set the additional cup and the pitcher of water nearby.

Get a Heart

            Say: Today we’re learning that love is a fruit of the Spirit.

            Read Galatians 5:22.

            Say: When we think of love, we often think of hearts. So you’ll each get a heart to remind you of God’s love for you.

            Distribute heart stickers, and have kids stick them on their shirts.

 

Act Out a Parable

            Say: Jesus told a story to explain how much God loves us. At that time, the religious leaders were mad that Jesus hung out with people who did wrong things. But Jesus doesn’t love only easy-to-love people. Jesus loves everyone! He told a story to show people that. Let’s act out the story together.

            Read Luke 15:11-12. Have kids act like they’re the son, and you’ll be the father. As the kids come to you and ask for money, give them each a bill from the “Fake Money” handout and a pen.

            Read Luke 15:13. Have kids cross the room to get away from you and then write how they’d spend their money on the backs of their bills. Then have kids tear up their money to show they’ve wasted it. Ask kids to hold their paper scraps in their cupped hands.

            Ask: • Sin and a lot of wrong choices pulled the son away from his father. Think of a wrong choice you made that you felt pulled you away from God. You won’t say it out loud. Pause for kids to reflect, but don’t have anyone share aloud.

            • Think of the feelings you had when you pulled away from God. Pause for kids to reflect, and then have kids share some emotions aloud.

            Have kids toss their money scraps on the ground. Say: When the son ran out of money, he needed a job.

            Read Luke 15:14-16.

            Say: Feeding pigs was a gross, smelly, dirty job. Let’s see what it’s like to do a job like that.

            Scatter the tissues you prepared all over the floor. Say: Your job is to clean up all these used tissues, plus the paper scraps from your money, and throw them all away.

            Ask: • What did you like or not like about cleaning up the used tissues?

            • Explain whether you’d like a low-paying job feeding real pigs.

            Say: The son in our story had an idea.

            Read Luke 15:17-19. Have kids take baby steps to approach you, saying “I’m sorry” with each step.

            Have kids pause as you read Luke 15:20. Enthusiastically run to the kids and give them hugs or high-fives.

            Read Luke 15:21-24. Have kids jump and shout in celebration. Then gather them and have them sit in a circle.

            Say: There was also an older son in this story. He’d stayed home and obeyed his father, and he was pretty mad that his younger brother got a party after all the wrong things he’d done. After all, shouldn’t the father love him the best and treat him the best since he’d stayed close to his father? But that older son is kind of like the religious leaders Jesus was talking to. He didn’t understand what a father’s love is truly like.

            Ask: • Was there ever a point during this story when the heart sticker I gave you wasn’t with you? Why? (Tip: If you did have any kids pull off their stickers, that could be an opportunity to discuss that sometimes we reject God’s love, but it’s always there for us to accept again.)

            • How does that remind you of God’s love?

            Say: God is full of so much love that nothing we do can leave his love behind. So when we say that love is a fruit of the Spirit, remember that the Spirit is God. When we’re friends with God, he changes us so we can love others more! God has loved us so much, and we can pass that love on to others. Let me show you what I mean.

 

Overflow

            Gather kids around the tray or baking pan you prepared.

            Say: Imagine this pitcher is full of God’s love, and this cup is you. Hold up the pitcher and the extra cup.

            Hold the cup over the circle of cups in the tray, and begin pouring into the cup.

            Ask: • What has God done to show he loves you? Give a couple of examples such as “given me a healthy body” or “provided a best friend.” Then let kids call out their responses. As kids name things, add more and more water until the cup overflows into the other cups below it.

            Pause in your pouring and say: When we experience God’s love, it overflows from our lives into others’. Love is a fruit of the Spirit. It’s what we do as a result of knowing our loving God!

            Ask: • What are examples of how we show God’s love to others? As kids name things, begin pouring again, watching the cups below get more and more full.

            Say: If I kept pouring, eventually this pitcher would run out of water. But God’s love never runs out. Even when we do bad things like the son in the story, God’s love is pouring into our lives. He’s ready to welcome us back! Because we have such a loving God, we show love to others. We can’t help but overflow his love! Love is a fruit of the Spirit.

Core Bible at Home [20 min]

Not available for this age level.

To use this feature, please ask your DIG IN Director to create a One Room classroom. For instructions and tips on creating a classroom for at-home lessons, click here.

 

Talk-About Video [10 min]

The Lost Grape

Supplies

  • “The Lost Grape” teaching video (watch or download here)

Tip

  • Don’t have internet in your classroom? That’s okay! You can download the videos before class using the “download” button at the link provided, or purchase DVDs here

 

Discuss and Watch “The Lost Grape”

            Say: We’re learning that love is a fruit of the Spirit. We saw how the father in the story Jesus told showed love when his son ran away and then came home.

            Ask: • Tell about a time you knew your parents really loved you. Share your own story first.

            Say: Let’s see what happens when one of our fruit-basket friends heads off on his own.

            Watch “The Lost Grape.”

            Ask: • Why did the adventures the grape went after seem exciting at first?

            • Why weren’t the adventures as exciting as he expected?

            • Why is being safe in God’s love better than doing our own thing?

            Say: For the grape, the best place to be was in the fruit basket with his loving fruit family. For the son in Jesus’ story, the best place was home. Sometimes it can seem like following our own way will be more exciting, but the best thing in life is accepting God’s love! Then God will help us pass his love on, because love is a fruit of the Spirit.

Preschool Puppet Skit [10 min]

Preschool Puppet Skit

Not available for this age level.

Object Lesson [10 min]

Come Back

Supplies

  • wide pieces of cardboard or foam board (1 for every 5-6 kids)
  • masking tape
  • rolling objects like balls or toy cars

Roll Objects Up the Ramp

            Say: In our Bible story, the dad loved his son very much. He was so happy when the son came back home! Let’s test out some different ramps to see how far our cars go and how fast they come back.

  • Form small groups of five to six kids, and give each group a piece of cardboard.
  • Give each group several rolling objects.
  • Have adult or teen helpers demonstrate how to make a ramp and then roll an object up the ramp so it comes back down again.
  • Let groups use their cardboard and objects in your room to make different ramps. Have kids experiment with the cars on the ramps.

 

Talk About It

            Ask: • How are our rolling toys like the younger son in our Bible story?

            Say: Even though we rolled the toys away from us, many of them came back. And even though the younger son went away from his dad, he came back! The dad loved his son so much that he celebrated when his son came home, just like we celebrated when our toys rolled back to us.

            Tell about a time you celebrated when someone returned to you. Perhaps you celebrated a family member returning from a vacation or a semester at college.

            Ask: • When have you celebrated and showed love to someone who came back? Kids might share about a time a sibling went away to camp for a week or a time a parent went on a business trip.

            Say: We celebrate when people we love come back. Love is a fruit of the Spirit, and love comes from God! God will always love us and welcome us back. And we can love and welcome others, too!

Deeper Bible [15 min]

Unchanging Love

Supplies

  • hanger with notches (1 for every adult or teen helper)
  • 8-ounce paper cups (2 for every adult or teen helper)
  • hole punch
  • yarn (two 2-foot pieces per adult or teen helper)
  • large plastic coins (4 per child)
  • masking tape
  • paper
  • markers (1 for every adult or teen helper)

Easy Prep

  • Punch 2 holes in each paper cup, about 1 inch from the lip of the cup and directly across from one another. Draw a smiley face on half the cups and a frowning face on the other half. Thread a piece of yarn through both holes in each cup and tie the ends together in a loop. Hook each loop on a hanger notch so every hanger has 2 cups hanging from it, 1 smiley and 1 frowning. Draw an arrow on a small piece of paper, and tape it to the hanger above the frowning cup.

Add Coins to the Happy Cup

            Form groups so each adult and teen helper has about the same number of children. Give each helper four coins per child and a scale you made ahead of time.

            Say: In Jesus’ story, the dad had a great big love for his son. Have adult or teen helpers draw a large heart at the top of a piece of paper.

            Say: But the son asked for all the money his dad was going to give him when he died. Have leaders hand each child four coins.

            Say: This probably really hurt his dad’s feelings. So when the son decided to come back home, he thought he’d done too many bad things for his dad to still love him. Maybe he hoped the dad would love him a little. Have adult or teen helpers draw a small heart at the bottom of the same page on which they drew the big heart.

            Say: Sometimes we feel the same way about God. We feel like we’ve done so many wrong things that God may not love us very much. Let’s look at something to help us think about that.

            Have each adult or teen helper hook the hanger over a finger and hold the scale out in front of the kids. Helpers can hold the papers with the hearts in their other hands, beside the scales, so that the arrow will be pointing between the two hearts before any coins are added.

 

 

            Say: When we do good things, God is happy.

            Share about something good you’ve done to please God. It may be that you helped a friend, told the truth, or took care of someone who was sick. Invite one child in each group to add a coin to the cup with the smile.

            Ask: • What’s something good you’ve done? Kids may say obey Mom, share with a friend, or be kind to a neighbor. Have each child add a coin to the cup with the smile as he or she shares.

            Say: Look—the scales are pointing to the big hearts. That means God loves us a lot. Have adult and teen helpers show kids that the arrow is pointing to the large heart.

 

Add Coins to the Sad Cup

            Say: But what if we have a day when we’re crabby? What if we yell at Mom and hit our sister?

            Share about something unkind you’ve done. Maybe you yelled at your kids, told a lie, or said something unkind. Have a child in each group add a coin to the cup with the frown.

            Ask: • What’s a wrong thing you’ve done? Kids may share about fighting with a sibling, not sharing toys, or disobeying Mom. Have them each add the rest of their coins to their group’s frowning cup.

            Say: Look! The arrow is now pointing to the smaller heart. When we do bad things, we may think, like the son in the story, that God loves us less. Have adult or teen helpers show kids that the arrow is now pointing to the small heart.

            Say: But remember, the dad’s great big love for his son never changed, even after the son did a lot of bad things. Have each adult or teen helper draw a second large heart on another sheet of paper and tape it over the arrow on his or her scale.

            Say: The dad’s love was always big, and God’s love never changes either. God has a great big love for you on your very best days and on your very worst days. Have adult or teen helpers show kids that the big heart is always there, whether or not the cup with the frown is full.

            Say: God is happy to see us make good choices, but it doesn’t make him love us more. And God doesn’t want us to make wrong choices, but he still loves when we do. God’s love is bigger than anything we can ever imagine. And when we’re friends with God, he helps us love others no matter what, too. Love is a fruit of the Spirit. That means God’s with us, showing us how to love others!

High-Energy Game [10 min]

Overflowing Love

Supplies

  • 18-ounce plastic cups (1 for every 6 kids)
  • brightly colored cotton balls (about 10 per child)
  • buckets or bowls big enough to hold 50-60 cotton balls (1 for every 6 kids)
  • upbeat music (optional)
  • music player (optional)

Easy Prep

  • Place 50 to 60 cotton balls in each bucket.

Tip

  • You can purchase downloadable music and other items to enhance your DIG IN program here.

 

Make the Love Overflow

            Say: In Jesus’ story, we learned about a dad whose love was bigger than anything his son could ever do. God’s love is bigger than we can ever imagine. It’s bigger than our hearts can hold! If we let God’s love into our hearts, it overflows out of us onto others! Let’s pretend these cotton balls are God’s love and those cups are our hearts. Can we make God’s love overflow in our hearts right now?

  • Form teams of six kids. Have each child pick a partner within the team. If teams have uneven numbers, one child can run with an adult or teen helper.
  • Place a bucket of cotton balls for each team on one side of the room. Have kids line up behind their team’s bucket, with partners standing side by side.
  • Put one cup for each team on the opposite side of the room.
  • On your cue, pairs will put their hands together like a high-five and place one cotton ball between their palms. Kids may take only one cotton ball at a time.
  • They’ll run and drop the cotton ball into the cup, run back, and send the next pair.
  • Play continues, relay style, until all the cups overflow.
  • If you’d like, play upbeat music while kids play.

            After all teams have overflowing cups, say: Look—you still have plenty of cotton balls left over, even though you filled your cups. God’s love is like that. Even when we’re full and overflowing with his love, he still has plenty of love left to give.

            Return cotton balls to the buckets, and allow kids to play again as time allows. If you would like, have them run to the cup in different ways (hop like a bunny, run backward, and so on).

           

Talk About It

            Say: God shows his love to us in so many ways, and his love for us never runs out.

            Tell how God shows his love to you. It may be providing for you, comforting you when you’re sad, or giving you people in your life who love you.

            Ask: • How does God show his love to you? Help kids as needed by making suggestions like giving them a parent to take care of them, sending them a good friend, or helping them make good choices.

            Say: God always loves us, and he’s always showing us his love. Because so much love is coming into our hearts, his love can overflow from us to others. That’s what “love is a fruit of the Spirit” means—God’s great big love in our hearts helps us share love with others, too.

Low-Energy Game [10 min]

Father, May I?

Play a Version of Mother, May I?

            Say: Today we heard about a father who showed love to his son even after the son had done some wrong things. Let’s play a game where you’ll pretend to be the son coming home to his father.

  • You’ll stand at one end of the room while everyone else gathers at the opposite end of the room.
  • One at a time, kids will take turns asking you if they can take steps toward you, the “Father” from the story.
  • They’ll ask, “Father, may I…?” and then ask to take up to three steps. They can be big steps, leaps, hops, baby steps, and so on.
  • In the traditional game play of Mother, May I? the “Mother” is able to respond with “yes” or “no.” In this twist on the game, only say “Yes, you may” to show how the father in the story loved and welcomed his son home.
  • The first person to reach you will be the new Father. You can allow new Fathers to vary their answers so your consistent “yes” in the first round will stand out as different.

           

Talk About It

            Ask: • What differences did you notice between all the Fathers in the game?

            Say: Not all the Fathers said “yes” all the time. That might be more like what we’d expect from a father who could be mad at his son for doing wrong things. But the father in the story showed only love—like in the first round when I always welcomed you to come closer.

            Ask: • Tell about a time a parent or other family member was loving and patient with you. Share an example of your own, such as a parent not being upset that you hadn’t called in a long time and simply being happy to hear your voice on the phone.

            Say: It would have made sense for the father to be mad at his son when he came home, but instead the father showed love. Love is a fruit of the Spirit, and God helps us show love even when it’s not easy. God’s Spirit can help us show love instead of anger or hurt.

Craft [20 min]

Welcome Home Wreaths

Supplies

  • chenille wires (2 per child)
  • tissue paper (in a variety of colors)
  • glue sticks
  • 8½x11 sheets of card stock
  • scissors
  • markers

Easy Prep

  • Make a sample craft to show kids.

Make Wreaths

            Show kids the sample craft you made. Set out the supplies to share, and have kids follow these directions to make wreaths.

  • Twist the ends of two chenille wires together to make a large circle, then bend the circle into a heart shape.
  • Trace the heart onto a piece of card stock and cut it out. Set the card-stock heart aside for later.
  • Tear small pieces of tissue paper. Ball them up and glue them onto the wire, all the way around the heart. You can choose just one color or make a fun color pattern.
  • When you finish your wreath, glue the card-stock heart to the back of it.
  • On the card stock, write “Welcome Home.”

 

Talk About It

            Ask: • What’s welcoming or comforting about walking into your own home?

            • What do you think was the best part of coming home for the son in the story?

            Say: Jesus told the story of the lost son to show how much God loves us. No matter what we do or how far we run away from him, God is always ready to welcome us back home. When you get home, hang your wreath inside the door your family usually enters through so it’s the first thing you see. Let it remind you that God’s love is always ready to welcome you home, and he wants to help you love others because love is a fruit of the Spirit.

            Have kids take their wreaths home and show them to their friends and families as they share about God’s welcoming love.

Life Application Wrap-Up [5 min]

Show Me the Love

Supplies

  • red washable marker

Play a Love Game

            Draw a heart with a red marker on each child’s hand. Sit with kids in a circle. Say: Today we learned that love is a fruit of the Spirit and that God helps us show love to others. Lead kids to touch the hearts on their hands.

            Say: Let’s play a game. We’ll try to think of people we can show love to—as many as we can. You’ll each have a turn to share. On your turn, touch the heart on your hand and name one person. You might say someone in your family, or you might say someone you don’t even know, like the cashier at the grocery story, a police officer, or a cook at a restaurant. Demonstrate to start, then have the child sitting to your left in the circle share. Guide each child to share, one after the other, encouraging them to speak quickly. Continue around the circle more than once and until kids run out of ideas or as time allows.

 

Pray

            Say: Wow! There are so many people we can show love to—from our families to our neighbors to our church and school. Since God is the one who helps us show love—love is a fruit of the Spirit—let’s ask God to help us love these people we named this week.

            Lead children in a brief prayer, asking for God’s help and mentioning as many kinds of people as you can remember from what kids shared in the game.

            Say: I love that you were here today to learn about love! I hope you’ll show love to everyone you see this week, and remember that God will help you show love because love is a fruit of the Spirit. I hope you’ll come back next week to tell me all about it!

Take-Home [0 min]

Dig In @ Home

Supplies

  • this week’s “Dig In @ Home” handout (1 per child) (download here)

Easy Prep

  • Add your church announcements to the “Dig In @ Home” handout.

            Distribute a copy of the “Dig In @ Home” handout to kids as they leave, or email it to parents during the week.