Series Note: In the lectionary year A Pentecost 14 through 17 we read through Philippians as the Epistle each week. The letters of Paul can have challenging content to teach to children (adults too!). We have written a children’s sermon series based on the scripture verses in Philippians. You can use these as a series or on their own. The overarching theme is focused on how we are those who walk with and live as servants of Jesus and yet rejoice that God is with us in all of our daily living as we strive to “let our gentleness be known and remember the Lord is near” (Phil 4:5 paraphrase).
Preparation: In your context think about or find out what the children or youth specifically or the church together are doing as service in the community or the world. For example, the children’s offering in our congregation is currently going to the Kid’s Cafe portion of our local food bank. Then find another older youth or adult who is willing to be person number 2. Work together to think of three ways you can give as examples of being in service to the community, family, and/or neighbors.
Faith+Open: Gather the children with you. “I heard in your Sunday school (or in our church or in our community) we are raising money for (or collecting) __________” So you know I think that is pretty cool–Since I heard you are doing that, I decided I could_______________ (fill in what you are going to do, either contribute or better yet, that it made you think of something you can do in your family or neighborhood).
Faith+Share: Person 2 interrupts (after you have said what you are going to do) “Wow, I think that is a fabulous idea! You know, hearing about how the kids/the church are______________ and that you are __________ I think I can help with those things too but I also know that ________________ needs______________.
Say, “Great idea. That is pretty neat how we have inspired to work together where we are and where we can to be in service in Jesus’ name. It reminds of our reading from Philippians today where Paul says, ‘Only, live your life in a manner worthy of the gospel of Christ, so that, whether I come and see you or am absent and hear about you, I will know that you are standing firm in one spirit, striving side by side with one mind for faith of the gospel.’” (NRSV Phil 1:27–feel free to paraphrase or summarize). We are serving in the Holy Spirit together even when we are doing different things. AND God is with us in our serving and in our daily struggles and in our daily joys.
“I want to teach you a blessing from Philippians that we are going to use for the next few weeks as we read from Philippians in worship. This blessing is on that reminds us how to serve one another with kindness and reminds us that God is with us always.” (Teach following blessing)
Faith+Blessing: Say together the words from Philippians 4:5 (NRSV) while doing the following actions: Let your gentleness (flat hands palms facing body circle each other) be known to everyone (open hands and arms out). The Lord is near (hands to heart)