Over the summer I planned a series for our church’s Sunday morning children’s program called PICTURE BOOK SUNDAYS: Sparking Faith Conversations using Picture Books and Scripture. Each week, using an engaging picture book as the spark along with games and a craft, children ages 3 – 10 delved into Scripture as we investigated what it means to be a beloved child of God. The kids enjoyed the lessons so much, that I have decided to start an occasional blog series focusing on picture books that can be used as the spark for conversations about faith with your children. Today’s lesson uses GOD’S PROTECTION COVERS ME (Beaming Books, 2018), written by Amy Houts and illustrated by David Creighton-Pester, as the picture book hook. I hope it sparks thoughtful conversations with your kids.
PICTURE BOOK SUNDAYS: A Faith-Sparking Lesson
GOD’S PROTECTION COVERS ME
by Amy Houts
PURPOSE: To recognize that just as various structures/coverings protect natural creatures, God’s protection covers us. Using Houts’ lovely metaphors as the spark, we’ll delve into Scripture for promises that God indeed cares for us with an everlasting love and protects us in the palm of His hand.
OPENING PRAYER AND GATHERING GAME: Building Card Houses
Open in prayer, then explain that today, we’ll be reading a story about all the kinds of structures animals build or find for protection. Can they name some? What do we build to protect us? Houses! Tell them it’s time to do a little building – with cards! Using only a deck of playing cards, challenge them to build their own houses. Demonstrate two building methods: triangular and four-card cell. This article from wiki-how will give you helpful construction tips, if needed, so you can demonstrate before the kids have their turn.
INTRODUCE THE STORY: Introduce the story by showing the book cover. Ask what protection means? What are some ways they protect themselves? (Wearing helmets, using seatbelt etc.) Have you ever thought about how God protects us? Ask them to be thinking about that as you read them the story. Then read the story.
FAITH-SPARKING CHAT TIME:
- Marvel at all the amazing ways animals are protected in nature.
- Brainstorm all the ways their parents protect their precious children – them!
- Ask, “Do you think God protects us?” Yes! “How?” He provides all good things – including families that care and watch over us, bodies that are designed to fight infection, human intellect that has allowed man to make medical advances to fight disease, create safer cars etc. and MIRACLES! Yes, God is not limited by what is possible. He invites our prayers to protect and provide for us even in the midst of the IMPOSSIBLE!
- And where can we find reminders of God’s protection? In the Bible!
DIG INTO SCRIPTURE TIME:
Wrap up the discussion by digging into scripture together to find beautiful reminders of God’s protective love and care. Use these verses to get you started:
Psalm 5:11-12 Psalm 32:7 Psalm 116: 5 – 7
Matthew 6: 25 – 26 I Peter 5:7
STORY-BASED ACTIVITY TIME: Select from one of the engaging activities provided by the publisher in the GOD’S PROTECTION COVERS ME Activity Guide.
WRAP UP: As children are finishing the activity – remember together all the animals and protective things mentioned in the story. Ask what those can remind us of? God’s protection covers us! That is wonderful news indeed.