This summer, we’re excited to have two different lesson units for the Preschool-Elementary kids on Sunday mornings! June 5-26 and July 10-24, we will be doing a Dr. Seuss-inspired unit on the Fruits of the Spirit, and August 7-21, we will be learning about interacting with God and the Holy Spirit through prayer, worship, and the Bible, all with an Olympics theme! Each of these lesson weeks, our staff will bring you a devotional idea you can use with your kids to help them take what they just learned on Sunday morning and integrate it into their daily lives.
By Teresa Sayles, Children’s Ministry Creative Arts Director, Woodland Hills Church
Peace can mean a lot of things in today’s world. Ask your kids what they think of when they hear the word “peace.” What do they think it means? What images or things come to mind when they think about peace?
Next, read together Romans 12:17-18 and then read together Philippians 4:6-7 and point out that Paul wrote both letters, yet it seems like he’s talking about a different kind of peace in each of the letters. Explain that there are actually two different kinds of peace that the Holy Spirit wants to help us grow and learn about in our lives.
The first is a peace we have with other people. It includes not fighting with or being mean toward others, helping others who are fighting to stop and find a peaceful solution, and trying our best to be good examples by choosing God’s love instead of anger and hate and revenge. Jesus calls us to be peacemakers in this world and to spread His love wherever we go and with everyone we meet.
The second kind of peace is a special peace that comes straight from God. This kind of peace in Hebrew is called shalom (pronounced sha-lome). Ask the kids to say that word with you a couple of times. Shalom is a peace from God that settles down our hearts with His love and helps us to trust Him even when things are going wrong. It’s the kind of peace Paul had when he was in jail and yet chose to sing praises to God all night (Acts 16:16-40). It’s the kind of peace Mary had when she said she would take on the important job of being Jesus’ mom (Luke 1:26-38). And it’s the kind of peace God’s Holy Spirit wants to give us each day, too! We may have a terrible day or something may go really wrong, but instead of worrying about something or getting upset, we can know that God is with us through it all, and that can help us to have God’s peace as we let His Holy Spirit remind us of His never-ending love for us.
To help your kids think of how they can be peaceful peacemakers each day, grab a large sheet of paper, a piece of poster board, or another large writing material and write across the top: “We’re Peaceful Peacemakers!” Then divide the remaining paper into two columns and label one, “Ways I was a Peacemaker This Week” and write “Times I Felt God’s Peace This Week” above the other. Encourage the kids to decorate the paper as they like, leaving room within each column for writing and drawing. Then, have each family member list a few ways they were peacemakers this week (ex. sharing a toy, not getting mad at a sibling, apologizing for something, etc.) or times when they felt God’s peace (ex. while praying, while playing outside on a nice day, when scared they remembered God is with them, etc.) and have them write or draw a picture of it in under the columns. Lastly, put the list somewhere in your home where your family can continue to see it and update it as the week goes on.
You can also download coloring page like below for your kids to decorate as they are reminded that, even when they’re scared, they can still have God’s peace in their hearts because He is with them.
peace coloring sheet