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Words That Cut

Words that Cut

Key Verse

Psalm 34:13

Additional Verses

Ephesians 4:29; Proverbs 15:1; Proverbs 12:18; James 1:26; Proverbs 18:21

Materials Needed

  • Log
  • Axe or hatchet


You may want to anchor the log to the floor to keep it from moving.

Object Lesson

Have you ever heard the phrase, “Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me?” Do you believe it? Well many people say that and try to act like words don’t hurt them, but in reality words do cut like a knife.

Have we ever said something that hurt someone? I think we all probably have at some point in our lives. James talks a lot about the power of the tongue and how dangerous it really is. In Psalm 34:13 it says that we should keep out tongue from saying evil things.

(Take a couple of chops into the log. Be careful that you don’t hit anyone with the chips.)

Sometimes we say things that are hurtful and then we say that we are “just kidding.” That is kind of like chopping into this log (take a couple more chops into the log) and then telling it that I was just kidding.

The damage has already been done. We need to be very careful with our words, because they cut even deeper than this axe does. The Bible tells us often to encourage others. Are our words encouraging to others?

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Control Your Tongue

bit and bridle

Key Verse

James 1:26

Additional Verses

James 3:3-5; Psalm 39:1; Proverbs 18:21; Philippians 4:8

Materials Needed

  • Horse bit and bridle.

Object Lesson

(Hold up the bit and bridle.)

Do any of you know what this is? (Wait for a response.) This is a bridle for a horse, and this metal piece here is the bit. Do you know where the bit goes? It goes in the horse’s mouth! Then you hold on to the reigns and when you pull on one side it causes the bit to tug on one side of the horse’s mouth and he will turn in that direction. When you pull on the other side, then she will turn that way. Do you know what happens when you pull them both at the same time? The horse should stop!

In the book of James it talks a lot about learning how to control our tongue. In James 3:3 it says that a bit is very small but it can control the entire horse. That means that if you want to control a gigantic horse all you need to do is control the bit in its mouth.

In James 1:26 it tells us that we may try to act religious, but if we cannot control our tongue then our religion is worthless. If we learn how to control this tiny bit then we can control a huge horse. If we learn how to control our tongue we can control our whole body.

We control our tongue by only speaking good and honorable things. When we gossip or when we tell lies or say bad things about people we are not controlling our tongues at all, and the Bible says that our religion is worthless.

Let us learn how to control our tongues. If you are tempted to say something that you shouldn’t maybe you should walk away for a few minutes. Maybe you should bite your tongue! Maybe you should think of something nice to say instead.

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What’s in Your Heart?

what's in your heart

Key Verse

Luke 6:45

Additional Verses

Ephesians 4:29; Matthew 15:18-19; Ephesians 4:29

Materials Needed

  • Cup of hot water
  • Tea bag (a variety of tea bags would be better)

Object Lesson

(Hold up the cup of hot water.)

Does anyone know what this is? (Wait for a response.) That’s right, it is a cup of water, but not just any water, this is hot water.

(Hold up the tea bag.)

Do you know what this is? (Wait for a response.) Correct, it is a tea bag. Can anyone tell me what color of tea this tea bag will make? (Wait for responses.) Those are good guesses, but there is no way for you to know until I brew it in this hot water.

(Place the tea bag in the hot water.)

When we look around at each other on Sunday at church we kind of look like this tea bag. We all dress similar. We talk the same. We act the same. But is that who we really are? No, not necessarily. Some of us might really love God and are following Him as best we can and some of us might now even care at all.

(Hold up the cup of tea.)

What am I holding now? (Allow a response.) That’s right, it is not longer hot water. Now it is tea, and we can see what color it is! What color is it?

Just like we can’t tell what color a tea will become before putting it in hot water, we cannot tell what’s in your heart until you are in hot water. In Luke 6:45 it says that a good person produces good things and a bad person produces bad things. What kind of hot water? Maybe you get in trouble. Maybe when you get hurt. Maybe when someone teases you. When we are in hot water the real “you” comes out!

We need to make sure that when we face the “hot water” of life that good things come out and not bad things.

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