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5 PYCLs: 1) BRING THE FLASHLIGHTS. 2) BE SHEPHERDS.  3) BE WISEMEN/KINGS/QUEENS
4) 
SING “THIS LITTLE LIGHT OF MINE” 
5) IS CHRISTMAS OVER?

Possible Younger Class Lesson ideas for the Christian Science Quarterly Bible Lesson on

 “Christian Science”
for December 26, 2021

by Kerry Jenkins, CS, of House Springs, MO
kerry.helen.jenkins@gmail.com • 314-406-0041


PYCL #1: BRING THE FLASHLIGHTS.
This lesson is so full of references to light that a flashlight, or a few, are sure to come in handy! Go to some old favorites: find a dark room (maybe a furnace room?) in your church and have them gather around with a flashlight on. It may be a good idea for all to hold hands so that there are no escapees. (From personal experience I know this can happen as my middle son, when about 3 took off when his teacher was doing this, ran into the church, stood on the podium during the service, looked at everyone, giggled and then ran back to his embarrassed Sunday School teacher who was trying to collect him!)

While in the dark space, ask what the light of the flashlight does for them. Get simple and detailed about this. What do you see with the flashlight on? What can you see with it off? If it is not a completely dark room, you can ask if things are clearer and sharper with the light on. Talk together about what light symbolizes.

Think of words together that light ‘does’: clarifies, points out, helps us see or understand, (another word is illuminates!), it can even warm if it’s from the sun! We can talk about light as the same thing as understanding, as in “I see the light”, or as in a cartoon where a lightbulb shines above a character’s head, symbolizing that they have an idea. (You could show them such a picture and ask if they know what the picture is indicating).


PYCL #2: BE SHEPHERDS.
Now have them dress as shepherds (just pieces of sheets with a rope to tie around their brow, the sheet flowing behind them, you can bring walking sticks for staffs). Go back to the light that you were talking about and have them imagine being out in the dark, making sure that their sheep were safe from nocturnal predators.

What might these shepherds be familiar with? Do you think they knew the stars intimately? I am pretty sure that any new “star” would be very much noticed by these men who were looking, for hours, into the night. They were ready to notice any light that was unusual, and appreciate it!

Read the part of the birth story where the shepherds see an angel and hear it talking to them. (Luke 2:8-18). How would you feel if you were there in the dark and noticed a new, strange star (turns out likely it was a comet…), and then suddenly an angel came and spoke to you and your friends, and then a whole host of angels! Would you be afraid? Happy? Wondering?
Would you be curious enough to go search out the baby Jesus?
Talk about the qualities of shepherds (ideally). Courageous, observant, gentle…
Should we embody these qualities too? How can we be good shepherds this Christmas?
Can we watch over the “flocks” we are given–our families, siblings, friends, strangers we meet?
Can we be observant rather than demanding, courageous when we are challenged by something scary? Can we be gentle in our responses?


PYCL #3: BE WISEMEN/KINGS/QUEENS
The three kings are featured in Section 2 of our lesson this week. (Matt. 2:1,2, 9-11/cit. B4) Check out on a map where each of the kings came from. How long were their travels? (It is thought that they came from what was then known as Persia, India, and Arabia). Approximately how many miles for each? How long would it take by camel? How many mountain ranges did they have to cross? Check this out on a map of that part of the world. How cool/amazing was it that they each found each other in these travels? Why do you think they found each other?
What kind of inspiration would you have to have to undertake a journey like this, to bring gifts to a baby, even when you knew he was important?
What was the point of this mission— I mean Jesus didn’t personally care that they brought these gifts? Might it have partly been so that others could recognize the importance of this child—how he would impact the world?
(In this case, these kings came from some of the most advanced civilizations of the day).

Talk about the fact that we have light again playing a central role in this story. We have already laid the groundwork for this by talking about all the things that light symbolizes.
Why would the Wise men follow a “light”? What were they hoping to gain, or discover?
Do you think they were blessed in their life from recognizing the importance of the Christ even though they went back to their homes?
Can we “follow” such a “star”/light today? How, and what does it look like?
What “signs” do we get today of Christ’s presence?

What qualities did these kings possess that allowed them to travel for so many months to arrive at this humble scene? Humility for sure! Persistence, faith, confidence, joy, hope…
Now make some quick paper crowns and write these qualities (and more) around the crown and have each student wear them!


PYCL #4: SING “THIS LITTLE LIGHT OF MINE”
Read together Matt. 5: 14-16/citation B18 from the Sermon on the Mount.
Explain that these are Jesus’ words to us. What does it mean to let your light shine?
What are you doing when you do that? Are you merely uncovering the light that is already within you? (yes! These qualities exist in each Godly idea!! You!)

List what light you might “shine” on the world: Joy, patience, obedience, kindness, gentleness, courage…the list is endless! Now teach them the song “This little light of mine” Here is a sweet version if you need help, you can just learn the first verse, or play the whole thing and let them dance with flashlights on and sing along!  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QCN893hzueQ
Have them take home a short list of how their light is going to shine in the coming week, maybe make a bookmark shaped piece of paper that they can draw a border on?


PYCL #5: IS CHRISTMAS OVER?
I always used to feel flat after Christmas was over…after all the buildup and the “big day” everything felt kind of dull and like there was nothing to really look forward to after the day passed. With all the qualities that we talked about in these Pycls, can we round up a big wrapped “gift” of all the ways that Christ is visible, anticipated, seen, rejoiced in, expressed?

Isn’t the Christ “shining” around us, bringing us joy every single day?
It’s our job to see this light, recognize Christ’s continuous presence in our daily life!

Give each child a pretend present wrapped nicely with a bow and make it openable so you can put in all the things we worked on that day—the crown, the flashlight, even the shepherd “costume” and staff if you want.

Revisit these things each week (they could even leave the box there so you can review these ideas regularly to see how Christmas is ongoing).
Even the idea of presents doesn’t end at Christmas.
Generosity is eternal and infinite!

Have a great week in Sunday School and an inspiring Christmas.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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