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 5 PYCLs: 1) PRACTICE LIVING LIKE JESUS! 2) MOVE PAST RESENTMENT.
3) CHALLENGE MATERIAL LIMITATIONS 4)
PRACTICE “BREAKING BREAD”
5)
LIST WAYS WE KNOW GOD IS PRESENT.
P
ossible Younger Class Lesson ideas for the Christian Science Quarterly Bible Lesson on

“PROBATION AFTER DEATH”
for Sunday, October 24, 2021

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


Pycl #1:  PRACTICE LIVING LIKE JESUS!
I love this lesson, but it can be a challenge to discuss with younger children in Sunday School. I find it helpful to focus on the idea of growing in our understanding of Life, of progress, of expressing divine Life in every aspect of our lives. This leads to spiritual progress, which, again, may not be a terrific access point. But we can always speak to how these stories lead us to be more like Jesus in our daily life! What does it take to practice living like Jesus?

This could be a great opportunity to work with the Sermon on the Mount. There are so many great directions and parables in this Sermon that we can take to our daily lives. Can the children try rewriting or retelling a favorite parable with a modern twist?
Maybe it would involve how we handle a situation at school, rather than how a wheat field is sown, for example.
Then consider how the new parable would help us to progress in our striving to be more like Jesus.


Pycl #2: MOVE PAST RESENTMENT “rocks.”
Talk together about the symbolism of the huge rock over Jesus’ tomb. Bring in a small rock and talk about what the qualities of a rock are. With the very young you really have to explain symbolism, so you can let them hold it, describe how it feels, what would it be like if it was really huge? There can be good and bad qualities associated with rocks and so there can be two columns as you write down these ideas. A rock can represent stubbornness, hardness of heart, something that irritate s(like a pebble in a shoe), something that crushes/blocks/obstructs. Or a rock can be a solid foundation, give shade, stand for grand and lasting ideas or qualities, be immovable or unchanging, reliable, steady, trustworthy etc.

What do they think that the rock represented that was over Jesus’ tomb? Maybe the hard heartedness of the people that he once healed? Perhaps it was the unbelief or doubt that he encountered? Hatred, fear, and giving up…What would be hard for you to “get out of the way” after being treated so unjustly? Hurt feelings? Resentment? How can we move these “rocks”? How do they think Jesus did this?


Pycl #3: CHALLENGE MATERIAL LIMITATIONS
When we think about progress in this Bible lesson we can share ideas about how the resurrection (and the ascension!) represent spiritual progress.
Read or tell the story of his resurrection. What makes us ready to move forward?
What made Mary the first to see Jesus after his resurrection?
Share the other stories of how he appeared to the disciples, breaking bread with them, and meeting them on the walk to Emmaus.

Are we ready to accept a new sense of Christ each day? What does his resurrection and ascension mean to us for our own daily practice/living? Doesn’t it mean that we can challenge material limitations?


Pycl #4: PRACTICE “BREAKING BREAD”, OR SHARING THE CHRIST MESSAGE WITH THE CHILDREN
Tell the story of the disciples walking to Emmaus, if you didn’t already. Explain that even though Jesus showed up, walked with them and talked to them for some time, they didn’t recognize him. Why do they think this happened? These were men who had followed him for years!

The human mind doesn’t recognize the Christ presence when it is filled with disappointment, hopelessness, fear. Sometimes we are just like those disciples. We might have a really great healing, and the next day we cannot recognize the blessings that surround us, even though we are walking around with our eyes open! Make sure you explain that the disciples thought that Jesus’ mission had failed! Many thought that the Messiah would surely lead Israel out of occupied Roman rule. They couldn’t imagine that the Messiah would suffer the shameful death that Jesus experienced! (Crucifixion was considered a shameful death, only the lowest members of society would have been subjected to that kind of sentence.)

Maybe you can share an example of how you might have had a period of doubt even after experiencing the power of God to heal. What made the disciples recognize that it was Jesus who had been speaking to them? Bring some bread to Sunday School and practice “breaking bread”, or sharing the Christ message with the children and having them pass around the basket of bread and eat. (You can bring some jam if you want to sweeten the deal 🙂


Pycl #5: LIST WAYS THAT WE KNOW THAT GOD IS PRESENT, EVEN WHEN IT’S NOT APPARENT.
What does the story of “doubting Thomas” mean to the students? It’s in citation B5/John 20:18-20, 24-29. What does it say to us today?
Do we have to have material evidence to prove to ourselves that God/Love/Truth is powerful and exists all around us? We might ask ourselves this question if we are feeling doubtful, sad, distant from God on any day.
What do we need to look to instead of material things, to be aware of the Christ presence that never dies, can never be crucified or buried?
It is speaking to us on our “walks” through life. So what kind of thought does it take to be aware of it? What are we looking to for “proof” of Love/Life/Truth?
Are we looking with just our eyes, etc.?
Can you make a list of the ways that we know that God is present?
How can we expect to “see” God even when we are struggling?
Maybe we can start with a list of gratitude? What else?

Have a great week in Sunday School!!  

 

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