More than just knowing the Bible, I want kids to WANT to know the Bible. To long for time spent in the Word and to foster a desire to spend time with God. But if this is something we want to develop, we have to teach it!
Every kid has been thirsty, and every kid drinks water throughout their week. I like to use water, straws, and Psalm 42:1-2 (NIrV) to teach kids about being thirsty for God’s Word. The best part? They’re reminded of this lesson every time they drink water!
Thirsty for God’s Word
Psalm 42 Object Lesson
Excerpt from the SLLRP Introduction Lesson
Materials: cup of water, straw, Bible, dixie cups with water (one per child), straws (one per child)
Have a cup of water and a straw. Ask children to wait while you finish your water. Drink from the straw until the water is gone and kids can hear the slurping sound from the straw. Finish the water and say, “ahhh”
Say: Thanks for waiting! I was really really thirsty. Raise your hand if you’ve ever been thirsty. Maybe it’s after a soccer game and you’re hot and sweaty and you just want that sip of ice cold water to cool you down! Or maybe it’s after you ate a whole bucket of popcorn at the movie and all the saltiness made you really thirsty.
Today we are going to learn about a Bible passage that tells us to be thirsty for something. Let’s see if you can figure out what it is…
Psalm 42:1-2 (NIrV) says…
A deer longs for streams of water.
God, I long for you in the same way.
I am thirsty for God. I am thirsty for the living God.
When can I go and meet with him?
What is David, the writer of this psalm, thirsty for? (let children respond) Yes! He is thirsty for God and he wants more of God just like you want that sip of water when you’re tired and thirsty. This verse reminds us that God refreshes us and restores us when we spend time with Him, just like water refreshes and restores us when we are hot and thirsty.
These verses encourage us to slurp up His goodness and His teachings each week, just like I slurped up the water in my cup. (invite children to make a slurping noise)
This week, every time you take a sip of water or juice, I want you to remember our lesson today and tell God you are thirsty for him. We’re going to practice that now.
Complete the following in large group or as a small group prayer activity.
We’re going to hand out a Dixie cup of water and a straw to everyone (have volunteers start passing out the water and straws now) We are going to use the straws and water to help us pray.
Once everyone has their cup, say: Let’s pray together while we slurp up our water. As you slowly slurp your water, talk to God in your head and tell Him you are thirsty for Him and you want to slurp up what he has to teach you. (pause to give children time) Tell Him how much you love Him and how you want to know Him more (pause to give children time) Then slurp up all your water and say, “Amen!” (pause to give children time)
Pray: Lord, we thank you that you are refreshing like a cold drink of water, and we thank you that you have something new to teach us each week. Help us to slurp up your Word. We love you, Lord, and it’s in your Son’s Name that we pray, and all God’s children said, (children say with you) “Amen!”
Encourage small groups to talk about ways kids can quench their thirst for God and to answer the question the psalmist asks about when we can meet with God (go to church, read their Bibles, talk with their parents about God, ask questions, learn more about God and the Bible, etc.).