- Optimus Prime Transformer (the largest one you are willing to purchase)
- Life-Cycle illustration of the Butterfly
- A gingerbread man cookie cutter
- Gingerbread cookie cutters to hand out to the kids
Good Morning children and young adults! Let’s start off with prayer.
Father in Heaven, we come before you today and give thanks to You for Your Word, Your grace, Your mercy, and Your guidance in our lives. Prepare us so that we can understand and use in our lives the message we are about to hear. This we pray in Jesus’ Name, Amen.
Have you noticed that over time people change? When I was a little older than you, my voice had a (raise pitch in voice) much higher pitch. Then, over time is started to change – to transform – (start lowering voice) into a much deeper voice. After I gave my life to Christ, my life began to change as well. I began to stop doing things that I had once done, such as get very angry with people, and I started to do new things that I hadn’t done before, such as read the Bible and pray.
The world – everyone who does not know Jesus – wants to help you to decide what is right and wrong, and what you should and shouldn’t do. Does anyone know what this is? (Hold up ginger bread cookie cutter) That’s right! This is a cookie cutter.
The world just wants to shape you into its pattern – its way of thinking. And just like this cookie cutter makes the same pattern again and again (make motions like you are pressing out gingerbread men cookies with the cookie cutter), the world wants to shape you into their way of thinking and doing things.
But the Bible tells us that we shouldn’t be doing what the world does, but what God wants us to do. Today’s Bible verse is Romans 12:2 –
“Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.”
God wants us to know His will for us. And He tells us that we can do that by transforming our mind through reading His Word, the Bible. Just a quick note – the word “conform” here means “squeezed into the mold of” (hold up the cookie cutter).
Does anyone know how a caterpillar becomes a butterfly (Raise Hand)? (Hold up the Life Cycle illustration) It first builds a cocoon, then it changes dramatically! When it comes out of the cocoon, it is something completely different! God does the same thing with our lives when we come to Him. He takes us from being a caterpillar – the way the world thinks and acts, and changes us – transforms us – into a beautiful butterfly that thinks the way He does and acts the way He wants us to act. It is freeing! The caterpillar can only crawl on the ground. The butterfly can fly wherever it wants.
Here’s something else interesting. The word that means “transformed” is metamorphoo – it’s where we get our word metamorphosis, just like the caterpillar turns into the butterfly.
So, do you want to be like this (hold up the gingerbread cookie cutter and make some stamping motions), OR, do you want (start dramatically lowering voice) to be a transformer (Pull out the Optimus Prime Transformer)?
Father in Heaven, Thank You for wanting to show us Your will. Help us to change – to be transformed – as we read Your word. Show us Your way of thinking, speaking, and doing things. Help us to respond to You when you show us where we need to change, and give us the grace and strength we need while we put into action what You are teaching us. Bless us this day, in Jesus’ Name, Amen.
(Special thanks to Andy Stanley for the cookie cutter/transformer illustration)