Children learn to love through games. For that reason, games that teach children to pray is a good way to help them see that prayer is a positive, enjoyable activity that can be done in a variety of ways. Prayer games for children are appropriate both for Sunday School and for the home.
Come up with a list of names to write on a card. These names could be people you know of that need prayer, or groups of needy people throughout the world. Place the names separately on small cards or pieces of paper that can be rolled up and placed within the balloon before blowing up the balloons. Have the kids toss the balloon into the air and have them try to keep the balloon up in the air for at least 30 seconds. When this is complete, ring a bell or call time. The child who catches the balloon pops it and the name on the paper is read out loud. The class then says a simple one or two sentence prayer for the name on the list.
Have the children sit in a circle. Whisper a phrase about prayer to the first child. The phrase could be something like, "God loves you and can't wait to hear your prayer." The first child whispers this to the child next to him, and this process repeats for all of the children in the circle. The last child says the phrase out loud. By this time the phrase will probably have changed. Use this moment to teach the children that God hears their prayers even if they do not always get the words right.
Musical Chair Prayers
Write out cards that have the names of people and tribes that might not get to hear about Jesus. Tape three of these to each chair in various places. Start the music and have the kids walk around the chairs. When the music stops have them kneel in front of a chair and find one of the hidden cards. Have them pray for a minute for the name on the card. Pick up the cards and repeat the activity until the cards are all gone. Then show the children how many different groups they have prayed for.
Close to God
Divide the kids up into two rows. Have one row go to one side of the room and the other go to the other side of the room. Give the kids on one side of a row (you can call this row A) each a piece of popcorn. Have them throw the popcorn to the row on the other side of the room (row B.) The pieces of popcorn will not all make it to the other side of the room. Have row B step closer and try it again. Point out how more pieces of popcorn made it over this time. Repeat this until row A can hand row B the popcorn. Then explain how this is like our relationship with God. The further we are from him the harder it is to have a close relationship with him. Talk about how praying helps you to grow closer to God.
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