Prepare: This series of children’s sermons in Advent will utilize your Advent wreath in your worship space. Each week the as the candle is lit you will explain what the candle means and then give them a take home. Please see the attached sheet. The sheet has an ornament to print and the devotion to print on the back of it. The devotion will change each week. Have a copy made on card stock for each child and household.
Gather the children to the Advent wreath. Say, Last week we talked about how much God loves us. God love us so much that God sent Jesus to show God’s love for the whole world. Who remembers why we light a candle each week? (Accept all answers) That’s right to remind us that Jesus is the light of the world and that Jesus will come again to us. Last week we lit the candle of Love, this week we light the candle of Joy. How many candles do we have left to light? (Have an acolyte, or an older child light the three candles.)
What is joy? What things do you do or say when you are so happy that you can’t contain it? Who show me how they act when they are joyful or really happy? Did you know that God loves being joyful with you and about you? God rejoices everyday for you and God showed that joy by sending Jesus to us. Do you think that God wants us to share joy with people around us like our friends, brothers or sisters, mom or dad, aunts or uncles, grandmas and grandpas etc.? How can we do that? (By helping to feed hungry people, hugs, helping a friend or sibling, singing songs together, etc.) Yes, there are so many ways to show God’s joy to other people.
Each of you will get this candle ornament that you can take home and color blue (or purple if you do purple in Advent). You can hang it on your Christmas tree and each week you will get another one to add to the tree. So now you will have three. On the back is a Bible passage from Isaiah 12 to read, a prayer and a blessing. Look for all the ways that you see God’s joy in the world and tell your mom, dad, sister or brother about how shared God’s joy that day. You can do this at dinner, in the car or before bed. Let’s practice it now.