When our beliefs and daily actions already show that we agree with God concerning the value of life, it’s time to add intentional life-honoring service. In this final lesson, “Service that Honors Life (Sanctity of Life – Part 3),” children will learn how they can help the Sanctity of Life cause and then apply what they have learned through a service project.
TARGET AGES: 8-12
OBJECTIVE: To teach the children how to combine their beliefs with actions that honor life
MAIN IDEA: Believing that all life is important is the first step in honoring life, but we must also serve in life-honoring ways to make the biggest impact.
SCRIPTURE PASSAGES: James 4:17, Isaiah 1:17, 2 Thessalonians 1:11-12, James 2:26
MATERIAL(S): items for care packages (service project)
Introduction (10 minutes)
OPENING PRAYER: “Lord, show us how to serve in life-honoring ways that lead others to you. Amen.”
PREVIOUS LESSON REVIEW: Ask the following questions to review the first two lessons of the series.
- What does, “Sanctity of Life” mean (that all life is important and valuable to God)?
- How do we know that all life is important to God (because every person is a unique creation and God sent Jesus to die for our sins)?
- What biblical actions can be used to honor life (treating others the way we want to be treated, asking forgiveness for wrongdoing, loving God, practicing humility toward others)?
- What kinds of words should we use toward others in view of honoring life (kind, peaceful, merciful, submissive, etc)?
Lesson (20 minutes)
- Say, “Today’s lesson is the last part of our discussion concerning ‘Sanctity of Life.’ It’s important to agree with God that life is important, and for our daily actions to match that belief, but we must also serve in life-honoring ways to make the biggest impact.” Read James 4:17. Ask a class member to give an example that matches the verse’s message (help the class with your own example if necessary). Explain that knowing we can help with life-honoring activities and choosing to ignore the need is a sin. Comment, “This verse tells us that knowing the right thing to do – whatever it is – and ignoring or turning away from it is a sin. We should always strive to chose right over wrong because each decision has the power to either draw someone to Christ or push them away.”
- Next, read Isaiah 1:17. Talk about the words that involve active service (e.g. seek, defend, take up, plead) and explain their meaning. Say, “It takes serious effort to serve others, especially when we are so busy with our own lives. But God wants us to make sacrifices so we have the time and energy to participate in life-honoring activities.” Furthermore, discuss from the verse that it takes time to “learn” how to serve in this way, but the Lord will help us if we commit to helping the cause of Sanctity of Life.
- Comment, “When we feel like we aren’t able to serve (for whatever reason), then remember this simple thing we can always do from 2 Thessalonians 1:11-12.” Ask for a volunteer to read the verses and then have the class identify that prayer is a way everyone can participate. Say, “Prayer changes things! We can always pray for the life-honoring efforts being made across the world to support the importance of life. Our prayers bring glory to God through those who obediently serve him.” Add that praying should already be a habitual part of our lives, and encourage the children to use a prayer list to help them remember requests.
- Lastly, read James 2:26. Emphasize that the bible tells us we are spiritually dead if we do not act on our beliefs. Comment, “This is why your church teachers, leaders, and family give you opportunities to serve. We want you to experience the joy in serving for causes that matter to God, and help you explore his unique plan for your life.”
Life-Honoring Service Project: (10 minutes)
Research and find an organization (such as a crisis pregnancy center, foster care ministry, or prison ministry) that will accept small care packages. Say, “Today we will serve others by preparing care packages. This project honors life because it will bless the recipients and show them that they are important to God and important to us!” Consider including small cards with scriptures or notes with prayers. Also, be sure to share the specifics of your chosen organization with the children and how they can honor life through continued, intentional service.
Conclusion (5 minutes)
RECAP: It’s our job as believers to serve according to our belief that all life is important to God. Through prayer and active service, people around us can be drawn into a relationship with Christ.
CLOSING PRAYER: “God, use us to show the world that all life is important and valuable. Amen.”