Invite the children to come together in your usual space. Tell them the story of Luke 4-The Temptation of Jesus either in your own words or from a children’s Bible. Be sure to emphasize that Jesus repeatedly focuses on God as the center of his life.
Show the kids the pictures of the fun items or the real things. Say to them, “I have some really fun things here this morning. Do you see anything that you like? Well, I will give you this (ipod, xbox, candy etc.) if you promise to do something for me every time I see you from now on. If I need my driveway shoveled, you have to do it because I gave you this toy. If the church needs cleaned you will have to do it because you agreed to take this toy from me. Is that ok? Do you still want ….?(Accept all answers. This might get tricky as someone will most definitely decide that it is a good trade! Just go with both sides.)
Well, some of you think it’s a good trade and some of you don’t. Hmmmm…..well when Jesus was offered to be an earthly king (which is a pretty good deal) and some great tasting food by the devil, he knew that is was not a good trade. You know why? Then the devil would be able to have Jesus do whatever the devil wanted! Jesus knew that he would owe the devil something forever if he took those things from him. And here is what Jesus also knew: God gives us all kinds of good things not to get us to do stuff for God but just because God loves us all very much. Now God may not give us all the toys we want or all the candy we want but God does give us all of the love that we need-our friends, our moms and dads and families-but most of all Jesus. God sent Jesus to make sure that we know God’s love all of the time.
So to remind each of you of that love I will give you each a piece of candy and you won’t have to do anything for it.