Matthew 6:19-24 in the Bible talks about not building up your earthly treasures, but focusing on the eternal treasures that will remain into eternity. Young children can have difficulty grasping this concept. Activities and crafts can be used to help children understand what this means and helping them to be able to focus on what is important in life.
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Children love going on a treasure hunt. They love not knowing what they will find and trying to figure out the clues along the way. Use Bible verses written on strips of paper as clues for the children. Choose a word or phrase from each verse to tell the children where the next verse is hidden. For instance, Matthew 6:19 reads, "I will give you the keys to the kingdom of heaven." Hide the next clue among the piano keys or on a computer keyboard. At the end of the hunt, leave bookmarks or some other small trinket that reminds them of God's love for them.
Read the selected verses in Matthew and talk to the children about the differences between earthly and heavenly treasures. Give each child a small wooden treasure chest. These chests can be purchased at a craft store. Allow the children to decorate their chest using paints, stickers and other decorative materials. When the children are done decorating these chests, give them each some small strips of paper that will fit into their treasure chests. Instruct the children to write down some of their heavenly treasures to put into their treasure chests.
When some children think of treasure, they also think of a pirate ship. Distribute a colouring sheet with a picture of a ship for the children to colour. When they are done colouring the ship, have them cut out the ship and glue it onto a paper plate. Cut waves from other paper plates to give to the children to colour. When these are coloured, staple them face to face at the bottom of the ship plates to create pockets. The children can write the Bible verse "Where your treasure is, there will your heart be" at the top of the plate. Give the children gold-wrapped chocolate coins, goldfish crackers or some other treat to put into their pockets.
This activity helps children to internalise the meaning of this Bible verse, as well as any others you are teaching. Children can work in small groups or as an entire class. One at a time, each child should draw something to represent a portion of the verse. If you are working as a class, call students up one at a time until the verse is complete. If they are working in small groups, give them the lead and allow them to decide how to do it, such as having the best artist draw what the others describe.
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