Prepare: You will need someone to help with this one. The idea is to have someone calling to you from an unseen place. For example, if you have access to a wireless microphone that can be used just outside your worship space, or maybe from behind a screen.
For the worship station you will need a large piece of white paper – like a large piece off an art roll – to make a banner.
Invite the children to gather and ask them if anyone has ever called to them – no, not on the phone – but called to them in a loud voice? Like a friend on the playground, or parent calling for them to come inside, etc. As the children are offering ideas, have you partner call to you. They should keep calling every 10 seconds or so until you find them (so they should be in an agreed upon place to save a little time!), but there needs to be time in between calls for you to talk to the children.
There it is again! Is it one of you calling me? No? Really? Huh. Well, since we are talking about being called we should talk about the Bible stories for today. They are both stories about being called – Hey, there is again! Is it one of you out in the congregation? No? hmmmm. . .
Well, in the stories God calls to people. God calls to Samuel as he is sleeping in the temple, and Jesus calls to Philip and Nathanael to follow him. In both stories the calls are unexpected, and in both stories the people being called have to trust and believe in the call, even though they either cannot see the person calling, or don’t know where the call will take them . . . Listen, there’s that call again! Alright, let’s go find them!
(now go searching for the person, take as longs as you need to find them, make a fun game out if it.)
When you find the person calling, have them ask for help with something simple, like carrying in the communion elements, or with lighting some candles, or collecting offering, etc.
I’m really glad I heard that call, and I’m glad that I could help. Samuel, Philip and Nathanael also answered when they were called and they became some of God’s most important helpers.
Either hand the blank banner on the wall or lay it out on a table. Have various colors available (crayons, pencils, etc). Invite people to write where they hear God’s call in their lives on the banner.
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