Denise Day Spencer

September 15, 2009

Children’s object lesson: The parable of the mustard seed

Filed under: Children's sermons — denisedayspencer @ 6:55 pm

SCRIPTURE: Matthew 13:31-32

OBJECTS: a tiny seed and the plant that results (or a picture of the plant)

Today we’re going to look at a really short little story that Jesus told about the kingdom of God. He compares the kingdom to a mustard seed.  A mustard seed is a tiny seed. When you think about it, all seeds are tiny compared to the plants they grow into, aren’t they? (more…)

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July 9, 2009

Children’s object lesson: The parable of the weeds

Filed under: Children's sermons — denisedayspencer @ 12:07 pm

SCRIPTURE: Matthew 13:24-30

OBJECT: a flower or vegetable plant and a weed

Today we’re going to look at another parable Jesus told. He said the kingdom of heaven is like a man who sowed wheat in his field. Wheat is a good plant; it’s what flour is made of. We use flour to bake bread, cookies, cakes and all sorts of good-tasting things. But when this farmer’s wheat sprouted, there were bunches of weeds mixed in with it.

I brought a good plant with me today. This is a [state name of plant]. But I also brought a weed. It’s not good for weeds to grow with the plants. They use up the water and nutrients in the soil so the plants can’t get as much. The weeds might even get taller than the plants and get more of the sunshine. And they make the space crowded, so the good plants don’t have enough room to grow. You may have seen your mom or your grandpa or someone else pulling weeds out of a garden or flowerbed to try to get rid of them. (more…)

March 10, 2009

Children’s object lesson: The parable of the growing seed

Filed under: Children's sermons — denisedayspencer @ 8:54 pm

Scripture: Mark 4:26-29

Object: seeds and the fruit of the seeds

Today we’re going to look at one of Jesus’ stories that seems, when we first look at it, to not be much of a story at all. He says the kingdom of God is like what happens when you scatter seeds on the ground and they grow into plants. Whether you stay awake and watch what happens or you forget about it and go to sleep, if those seeds have the right conditions to grow they will grow. (more…)

January 2, 2009

Children’s object lesson: The Parable of the Sower–part 4

Filed under: Children's sermons — denisedayspencer @ 2:02 pm

SCRIPTURES: Matthew 13:1-9, 18-23, Luke 8:4-8, 11-15
OBJECT: a healthy potted plant

This is our last talk about Jesus’ Parable of the Sower. You remember the farmer who sowed his seeds. Some fell on a hard, dry path; others on rocky soil; still others in a bunch of weeds. None of those seeds ever became the healthy plants. (more…)

November 20, 2008

Children’s object lesson: The Parable of the Sower–part 3

Filed under: Children's sermons — denisedayspencer @ 8:20 pm

SCRIPTURES: Matthew 13:1-9, 18-23, Luke 8:4-8, 11-15
OBJECT: a flowerpot, dish garden (etc.) very full of plants

Today we’re still talking about Jesus’ Parable of the Sower. It’s a story about a farmer who sowed his seeds. Some fell on a hard, dry path, while others landed on rocky soil. In both of those situations the seeds died and never became wheat or corn or whatever they were meant to be.

There was a third group of seeds that didn’t do so well. These fell in the middle of weeds. At first they did OK. They sprouted. They grew. But the weeds finally choked the little plants and took over. (more…)

October 3, 2008

Children’s object lesson: The Parable of the Sower–part 2

Filed under: Children's sermons — denisedayspencer @ 8:52 pm

SCRIPTURES: Matthew 13:1-9, 18-23, Luke 8:4-8, 11-15
OBJECT: a few seeds and a clear glass filled with rocks & a small amount of dirt

We’ve been talking about the parables of Jesus–stories he told to teach people about God. Last time we looked at the Parable of the Sower. We talked about a farmer who dropped some seeds on a hard, dry path. Does anyone remember what happened to those seeds? That’s right; the birds came down and gobbled them up.

The next bunch of seeds in Jesus’ story fell on rocky soil. Remember, the seeds represent the gospel, the story of Jesus’ death for us. Let’s put some seeds in this glass. (Do so). Seeds need dirt to live, right? And here’s dirt. But look at how thin this layer of dirt is. What’s underneath the dirt? That’s right–rocks. (more…)

September 25, 2008

Children’s object lesson: Parable of the Sower, part 1

Filed under: Children's sermons — denisedayspencer @ 2:45 pm

SCRIPTURES: Matthew 13:1-9, 18-23, Luke 8:4-8, 11-15

OBJECT: a few seeds and a flat rock

Today we’re going to begin looking at one of the parables Jesus told. It’s usually called “The Parable of the Sower,” and it’s about a farmer who was trying to plant his crop.

You may not know much about planting crops but that’s OK, because the farmer in this story didn’t plant the way a farmer would do it today, anyway. Back then they didn’t have all of the machinery we have now. The farmer in this parable does something very simple: (act this out by pantomime) He takes the seeds in his hand and scatters them on the ground. He would come along later and plow the seeds under. (more…)

August 23, 2008

Children’s object lesson: Why parables?

Filed under: Children's sermons — denisedayspencer @ 1:37 pm

SCRIPTURE: Matthew 13:10-15
OBJECT: A flashlight

Today we’re beginning a study of Jesus’ parables. What is a parable? It’s a story told to give us a picture of an idea. Jesus told a lot of parables. It was his favorite way to teach.

Let’s start by asking why Jesus told parables. Well, for one thing, everybody loves a good story. But there’s more to it than that, as Jesus himself tells us in Matthew 13:13. When the disciples asked him why he taught using parables, Jesus said, “Though seeing, they do not see; though hearing, they do not hear or understand.” He meant that the people could see him, but they didn’t see — as in understand — what he was talking about. They heard him, but they weren’t really paying attention.

Jesus taught in parables because he knew his stories would either show the people the truth or hide it from them.

It’s a lot like a flashlight. I’ve got one right here. You’ve probably all used a flashlight before. It lights the way where you shine the light. That’s why you use a flashlight, right? But what you may have not noticed is that it makes everything outside the beam of light — the things still in the darkness — even harder to see. The light makes the darkness seem even darker.

You see, Jesus knew there were some people who didn’t want to believe in him and would never believe, no matter what he did. They would listen to his parables and think, “Oh, he’s just telling stories” and walk away. But other people would listen and say, “Wait a minute. What does this story mean?” And someday they would understand not only the parables, but who Jesus really was. They would know that the very Son of God was the One who had been teaching them.

As we study Jesus’ parables, I pray that we will be like the people who listened and understood and believed.

October 24, 2007

Children’s sermon: Stewardship

Filed under: Children's sermons — denisedayspencer @ 7:24 pm

One more children’s object lesson drawn from the doctrinal summaries in the Disciple’s Study Bible.

SCRIPTURES: Psalm 50:10-11, 14

OBJECT: a fast food container or wrapper

I brought a container with me today, and I’ll bet you can tell me what came in here. That’s right (French fries, hamburger, etc.) Now we all like to eat out, but occasionally we may have a problem in the restaurant. If there’s something wrong with the food or if I’m treated rudely I can say, “I want to talk to the manager!” You see, the manager is the person in charge of the restaurant at that particular time. The manager probably doesn’t own the restaurant. He just makes sure it’s operated the way it’s supposed to be. (more…)

October 11, 2007

Children’s sermon: The consequences of sin

Filed under: Children's sermons — denisedayspencer @ 3:43 pm

Here’s yet another in my series of object lessons based on the doctrinal summaries in the Disciple’s Study Bible.

SCRIPTURES: John 8:34, Romans 6:23

OBJECT: toy handcuffs or a heavy chain

We talked last time about sin. We learned that sin can be breaking God’s law. It can also be missing His target; falling short of His goals for us. Today we need to ask, “So what? What happens when I sin? Why is it so serious?” (more…)

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