Have the children come forward. Have them stand in a line and join hands. Tell them that they are going to play a game of electricity. You will start it. When they feel their hand get squeezed, they squeeze the hand of the person to their right. So you will stand on the far left of the line. Start the “electric” chain. Have the person at the end of the line say “We love each other!” After a time or two of the game, pull someone out of the middle and leave the gap. Start the game again. What happens? Half of the chain doesn’t get the “electrical” flow. Have the children sit down right where they are.
In our story from John today, Jesus is talking about how God is with us in our lives and we are also part of God’s life. Because of this, the love of God is in us all and we are to share it with everyone. This is kind of like the game of electricity. It flows from person to person, and we need each other to transmit God’s love. What happened when we pulled someone out of the game? The flow stopped! God needs each and every one of us to spread God’s love! What are ways that we can share God’s love? (Accept all answers) Yes! Those are all good ways!
Do you know what day today is? Mother’s day! We have many women in our lives who show us love! Moms, aunts, grandmas, teachers, friends, SS teachers, pastors, mentors, all kinds of women who love us. We can show all of those women love too! In our worship station this morning we can all make a chain of love! (See Faith + Worship for instructions) We are all needed to show God’s love to one another.
Loving Jesus, you connect us together with your love. You tell us that love is the most important part of all of our lives. May we show all people your love. Amen.
Have construction paper hearts cut out and available (about 2×3 inches would be a good size). Have markers and tape available. Invite people to write names of women who they love and show them the love of God on a heart. Connect the hearts together to create a chain of hearts. Have a table top cross to drape the “heart chain” on or find a place to hang it. Depending on the size of your congregation, pray for the names on the hearts or invite people to pray as part of the worship station.
+Live in the love of Jesus+
Read the children these verses out of a children’s Bible (my two favorites are the Spark Storybook Bible and the Jesus Storybook Bible). Many of the children’s Bibles will incorporate this story with the foot washing scene. Adding those verses is a wonderful idea!
Ask the children, “How can you tell if someone is a good reader? How about a good soccer player? Or a dancer? (Accept all answers) We know when someone can do something when we see them do it right? Just talking about it doesn’t always tell us what a friend can do. We have to experience them doing it don’t we? How do people know that we love God? (Accept all answers) When we do things that help others, are nice to others or stand up for people who other people are not being nice too, right? What if we SAY that we love God but then treat someone not very nicely? Do you think that people will know that we love God? No, maybe not. Jesus says that if we love one another-each person we meet-then the world will know that we follow Jesus. That’s kind of hard though all the time isn’t it? I know that I am not nice all the time to people! Does that mean that I don’t love God or that God doesn’t love me? NO! It means that God loves me enough to say “try again” and “again” and “again” and “again….” You get the point! But we should try every day to let people know that we love God, God loves us and God loves all people.
We are going to show everyone here that we love them and God. I have little cards printed up that say “Jesus loves you” (see attachment). We are going to give those to everyone here and give them a hug or a high five or give a blessing (see below). You can even take some of these cards with you to give to friends or other family members. (Have enough printed up for all people to take a few with them when they leave.)
Dear Jesus, you love us so much. Let us show the whole world how much you love all people. Amen.
(Make the sign of the cross on one another) Jesus loves you and so do I.