Proclaim God’s Grace with Children’s Voice; Spread the Aroma in Children’s Way
By Rev Eva Lok
December 3, 2023
The 2023 theme for the NPAC family is “Discern and Proclaim God’s Grace; Pass on Legacy & Spread the Aroma.” The Children’s Sunday School (Chinese) also acts in response. I have designed three themes to help children know from different perspectives what thanksgiving is as well as the importance of responding to God’s grace.
Lesson 1: Remembering vs Not Remembering: This lesson asks: Do we remember the grace that God gives us? It is not easy for children to notice God’s grace. Financial stability and good health are taken for granted. When difficulties arise in studies and living, they may not seek the help of God. Even the experience of God’s grace is quickly forgotten. Through the story of the ten lepers who were healed by the Lord Jesus but only one of them came back to give thanks, we explore with children the reasons for forgetting grace. These may include: focusing only on the well-being of oneself; not acknowledging the importance of thanksgiving; not accustomed to prayers and thanksgiving, etc. If we do not have a close relationship with the Lord Jesus, if we only come to Him when in trouble, we will only assess if God has given us His grace by whether He has resolved the difficulties for us. This will make it more difficult for us to discern God’s grace.
Lesson 2: Hearing vs Not Hearing: This lesson asks: Has God heard our prayers? Children tend to think that only if God responds the way we pray has He heard our prayers. We use the story of Naaman being healed of leprosy to tell children that God has His own plan which is not what Naaman could have imagined. “I thought that he would surely come out to me and stand and call on the name of the LORD his God, wave his hand over the spot and cure me of my leprosy” (2 Kings 5:11). The fact that God has not responded in the way we asked in our prayers does not mean that God does not answer prayers. God wants to give us the best. In the lesson, there is a story about not being able to go on a school picnic due to rain. It shows that it is not because God does not answer prayers. On the contrary, it is because of His protection. If we set out for the picnic, we would meet with an accident on the way. Even for things we do not pray about, God still cares. Such is the grace of God.
Lesson 3: Can do vs Cannot do: This is the last themed lesson. Children think that God’s teachings are for “listening,” and “doing” is not easy at all. Some reasons why most people think that it is not easy to put God’s teachings into practice are because they are too busy, or the teachings are too difficult or outdated. The story of the young man lets children know that to obey and practice the teachings of the Lord, we need to depend on the Lord’s strength: “With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible” (Matthew 19:26). God wants us to practice His teachings because of love. With love, He has saved us from sin. God expects us to respond to Him with love and recount His wondrous works.
The year will soon be over. The children are working hard on their lessons to proclaim God’s grace and spread the aroma. How about you? In the process of learning, may we all experience more deeply the grace of God so we will keep spreading the aroma of the Lord.
Read the article online: https://npacem.org/ps20231203/