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John 3:16-17; Romans 5:6-11
1 Corinthians 13:4-8; Mark 12:29-31; 1 John 4:7-8
- Conversation Heart candies
- Large paper hearts
- Display board or corkboard
How many of you guys got some Valentines this past week? Maybe you got some at school or at sports or scouts. When I was a kid, I loved to make one of those Valentine mailbox thingies to collect all of my Valentines in. After a Valentine party at school, I always counted how many Valentines I got and had fun reading all of the silly messages and I especially loved looking at all of the good candy that I got. I especially loved those little Candy Conversation Hearts with love messages written on them (take some out and eat one). It made me feel good too, to know that my classmates liked me enough to give me a little card and let me know that I had a friend. Did you guys know that there is someone that loves you even more than your friends love you? And there is someone that loves you even more than your parents and grandparents love you. This Guy sent you a Valentine and it isn’t one of those little cards with a lollipop attached. It’s not a dozen roses that cost $100 or a 5lb box of chocolates. God loves you so much that he sent the most expensive Valentine in the world to you. We are going to read about the Valentine that God sent you.
John 3:16 says “For this is how God loved the world: He gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life. 17 God sent his Son into the world not to judge the world, but to save the world through him.
So, who sent you a Valentine? (God)
What was the Valentine? (Jesus)
Let’s read some more about this wonderful Valentine: Romans 5:6 says When we were utterly helpless, Christ came at just the right time and died for us sinners. 7 Now, most people would not be willing to die for an upright person, though someone might perhaps be willing to die for a person who is especially good. 8 But God showed his great love for us by sending Christ to die for us while we were still sinners. 9 And since we have been made right in God’s sight by the blood of Christ, he will certainly save us from God’s condemnation. 10 For since our friendship with God was restored by the death of his Son while we were still his enemies, we will certainly be saved through the life of his Son. 11 So now we can rejoice in our wonderful new relationship with God because our Lord Jesus Christ has made us friends of God.
What was God trying to tell us with his Valentine? (He loves us so much that he was wiling to send his only Son to die for us).
So God’s Valentine to us is Jesus and the forgiveness that he bought for us. God really loves us more than anyone else could.
Do you love him back? God has shown us how much he loves us and he loves to hear from us that we love Him too. (Ask the kids to give a reason why they love God. He provides, forgives, cares for us, gives us joy, etc.). Work together as a class to write some “Conversation Hearts” to God on colored paper hearts. Attach them to a display Board with thumbtacks. Here are some ideas:
Call On Me
UR My God
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Luke 6:45; Matthew 12:34-35; Proverbs 23:19
- Blindfold or bandana that you can tie around your eyes
- Ear plugs, or shooting muffs
Do any of you have a heart? Of course you do! We wouldn’t be alive if we didn’t have a heart. A lot of times when we talk about our heart though, we aren’t just talking about the organ in our body that pumps blood. We are talking about our emotions and the things that drive us. That is what we are referring to when we tell someone who we love them with all of our heart.
In Proverbs 4:23 it tells us that you need to guard your heart. That means we need to protect it. How can we protect our heart?
(Take out the blindfold and put it over your eyes.)
We can protect our heart by controlling the things that we see. Maybe you have watched a movie that you shouldn’t have? Maybe you saw a picture that wasn’t good. Or maybe you read something that you know didn’t please God. We need to protect our heart by controlling the things that we see. If something comes on the TV that isn’t pleasing to God, we need to put a blindfold on! OK, maybe that wouldn’t work well, but we can change the channel or walk out of the room.
(Show the ear plugs and put them in.)
Do you know what these are? (Wait for a response.) I can’t hear you, you will have to speak up. (Make everyone yell. Then take out the earplugs.) Maybe I should take these out? I can hear you so much better now. We can also protect our heart by controlling the things that we hear. Maybe you hear someone telling a joke or story that is not good, you can just walk away. Or maybe all of your friends like to listen to a certain band of type of music that you know doesn’t please God. Well, you need to control those things and not listen to them!
Why is it so important that we guard our heart? The Bible says that it controls every thing that we do. If we are always watching and hearing things that are bad then it is filling our heart with bad things. If our heart is full with these bad things, that is what will be coming out in our actions and the way we speak, and that does not please God.
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Ecclesiastes 4:9-12; John 15:13; Proverbs 17:17; Hebrews 10:24-25; Proverbs 27:17
- Friendship bracelets (If you wanted to you could give one to everyone, or make them together as a craft)
(Show your friendship bracelets.)
Has anyone ever give you one of these before? This is a friendship bracelet. Usually you will make them and then give them out to your friends. Have any of you made them and given them to someone before? (Let them show their bracelets if you want.)
The Bible says in Proverbs 18:24 that a good friend will stick closer than a brother. We all have acquaintances, friends that we see from time to time but are not very close to us. Those friends are nice to have, but they are not the people who you would call on when you are in trouble or you really need a hand.
A true close friend will stand by your side when no one else will. They will be there for you. They will support you. They will help you. They will even stick closer to you than a family member might. Have you ever had a friend like that?
I hope that you have a friend like that! I also hope that you are a good friend like that to someone! Even if you don’t have a friend that is that close to you we do have a friend in Jesus! He loved us so much that He died for our sin and came to set us free. He will NEVER leave us and never forsake us! He will always be there for us when we face trouble and difficulties.
From time to we may feel lonely like no one cares for us. Always remember that God does care for us and loves us more than anyone else ever could. He is our friend even if we feel like we don’t have any friends at all.
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Galatians 5:22-23; Psalm 106:1; Psalm 36:5; Psalm 107:15; Ezra 3:11; 1 Chronicles 16:34; Romans 8:38-39
In Galatians 5:22-23 we read that there are many qualities, or fruits, that God wants us to have in our life. One of those is the fruit of love.
(Hold up the ring.)
Does anyone know what this is? That’s right! It is a ring. (Tell about how you got the ring.)
Rings symbolize love and when two love each other and get married they will often give each other a ring. Why do they use rings? Rings are usually made of a very precious metal like gold or silver. This is because love is very precious, it is one of the most precious things we can ever have.
Rings are also round. They have no beginning or end. That is because our love is supposed to be like God’s love…eternal. The Bible says in Psalm 100:5 that God has loved us since before we were even born and will always love us. The Bible also says in Romans 8:38-39 that nothing can ever separate us from the love of God.
God wants us to love Him with a never-ending love also, and he wants us to love those around us that way. Some people are not that easy to love, but God still wants us to love them and treat them with honor and respect.
(Hold up the ring again.)
Let us have love that is like this ring, never-ending!
1 John 4:11
Galatians 5:22-23; John 13:34; 1 John 4:20; 1 John 4:7-8; 1 Peter 4:8; Romans 12:10
- Strawberry. Feel free to bring plenty to pass out.
In Galatians 5:22-23 we learn about the Fruit of the Spirit. These are things that we should producing when we are living a life following Christ. The first one is talks about is the fruit of Love.
Do you know what love is? Love is when we care for someone more than we care about our own life. In 1 John 4:11 is says that God wants us to love one another because He loves us so much.
(Show everyone the strawberries.)
These are delicious strawberries and today they are going to represent the fruit of love. On Valentine’s Day people will often give someone they love a box of chocolate covered strawberries. Have you ever had a chocolate covered strawberry before? They are delicious!
(Hold up the strawberry so it looks like a heart.)
If you look at a strawberry it kind of looks like a heart we will often tell people that we love them “with all our heart.” God wants us to love Him with all of our heart! He also wants us to love others the same way.
(Take a bite of the strawberry.)
Strawberries are so sweet and delicious. God’s love is sweet, and he wants us to be sweet and loving to those that are around us as well.
God has loved us so much and He wants us to love those around us in return. In 1 John 4:7-8 it says that if we say that we love God but don’t love others then we really aren’t loving God at all. He wants us to love one another.
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1 John 4:7-8
John 17:21-23; 1 Thessalonians 5:14; 1 Peter 3:8
- Bike wheel
(Hold up the bike wheel.)
Does anyone know what this is? (Allow the kids to respond.) That’s right it is a bike wheel. And does anyone know what these are called? (Point to the spokes.) These are the spokes. The spokes job is to hold the wheel together. Here near the rim you see that the spokes are pretty wide apart, but they get closer together as they get closer to the hub.
Let’s pretend that each of you are a spoke on this wheel. What do you think we could pretend the hub is? (Wait for a response.) Let’s make-believe that this hub is God.
Do you know what the interesting thing is? The closer you get to God the closer you get to each other! You may say that you want to get closer to God but you don’t want to get closer to others. Well, it doesn’t work that way!
In 1 John 4:7-8 is says that if you love others then you love God but if you don’t love others you don’t love God. So the more that you love God the more you will also love one another by caring for those that are around you.
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