Use this children’s Sunday School lesson to teach kids that it’s important to spend time with Jesus every day.
Intro Game: Mary and Martha Marathon
Have students line up in a row on one side of the room, facing you. When you yell “Martha!” students should run as fast as they can to the other side of the room, then back to their original side, then back to the other side of the room until you yell “Mary!”
When you yell “Mary!” everyone must immediately stop. When you call “Martha!” again, they continue running. Have them start and stop a couple of times. Yell “Martha!” a couple of times in a row to see if you can trick the students. Do the same with “Mary!”
If any students start or stop at the wrong time, they’re out. The last one in wins.
Play a couple of times and once all the students are tired of running, have them sit down for the lesson.
Read Luke 10:38-39.
“As Jesus and His disciples were on their way, He came to a village where a woman named Martha opened her home to Him. She had a sister called Mary, who sat at the Lord’s feet listening to what He said.”
What was Mary doing? (Sitting and listening to Jesus.)
(Read Luke 10:40.)
“But Martha was distracted by all the preparations that had to be made. She came to Him and asked, ‘Lord, don’t you care that my sister has left me to do the work by myself? Tell her to help me!’”
Mary was sitting and listening to Jesus, but Martha was being busy. She was cleaning and cooking food, and she didn’t have time to listen to Jesus. And what did Martha want Mary to do? (She wanted Mary to help her do the chores.)
Do you think Mary should help Martha do the chores?
(Read Luke 10:41-42.)
“’Martha, Martha,’ the Lord answered, ‘you are worried and upset about many things, but few things are needed—or indeed only one. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her.’”
Did Jesus make Mary help Martha with the chores? (No.)
It’s nice to help people, but Jesus knew it was more important for Mary to learn from Jesus.
We all get busy sometimes, just like Martha was busy, but it’s important for us to be quiet and learn from Jesus sometimes too, just like Mary was doing. What can we do to be quiet and learn from Jesus? (Pray, read our Bibles, go to church, etc.)
So remember, even when you’re busy, it’s good to stop and take at least a little bit of time every day to learn from Jesus.
Prayer Exercise: Spending Time with Jesus
Have students separate around the room. Ask them to spend 5 minutes praying to Jesus. Tell them that they can talk to Jesus about anything they want to. After 4 minutes, ask them to stop talking to Jesus and to listen to anything He might want to say to them in their heart.
Game: Mary and Martha
Play the intro game again and remind students that Jesus wants us to stop once in a while and learn from Jesus as Mary did instead of always being busy as Martha was.
Jesus, thank You for reminding us what’s really important. It’s not being busy and doing things; it’s spending time with You. Help us all to spend a little time learning from You every day. Amen.
You can also find this lesson for Kindle or in print in my book, The Parables and Teachings of Jesus Vol. 2.