Clearly hearing God’s voice can save us from some serious missteps in our daily Christian walk. Jesus told his disciples,”My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me.” John 10:27 (NIV) What an encouraging verse, but how can we achieve good spiritual hearing? I like these three object lessons; they demonstrate the most important concepts about hearing God. Try all three in one lesson or spread them out over a few weeks to reinforce the necessity of hearing the voice of the Lord.
Mini instrument set: Purchase a mini instrument set from a party supply or dollar store. For the best results, you need noisy instruments like a tambourine, maracas and a sliding whistle or harmonica. Ask a volunteer to be the “listener” and recruit enough volunteers to play each instrument. Explain to the kids that although God’s voice is not difficult to hear, other voices can drown Him out if we are not careful. We need to keep other “voices” to a minimum to hear God better. On the count of three, ask the musicians to play loudly while you whisper the child’s name. Next, whisper the child’s name without all the instruments playing. Ask the child if it was easier to hear the voice with the noise or without.
Noise cancelling headphones: Say to the kids, “I love these noise canceling headphones! I can rock out to my favorite music or shows without hearing anything else. But if I’m not careful, I can miss an important phone call or even a knock on the door when I am wearing them. Want to try them?” (If you have a small group, consider letting each kid test them out. For large groups, select one or two children to attest to the headphones’ effectiveness.) “You can cancel out extra noises by reading the Bible, talking to God and worshiping Him with all your heart.”
Hearing aids: Ask a puppeteer to help you demonstrate this visual lesson. If you can’t find a hearing aid, make an old-fashioned one from paper made into a cone. The puppet could pretend he can’t hear you until he wears his hearing aid. (Be sensitive though, some kids have hearing issues.) Then tell the puppet that he needs a hearing aid. He can produce some wacky aids for laughs, then tell him that Jesus promised we could hear him. We need to exercise our faith!
Have fun with these object lessons!