Scripture: Matthew 7:12, 25:40 Tenth Sunday after Pentecost
FOLLOW THE GOLDEN RULE
15 min. Greet members as they come in, asking them to check their plants. If they are large enough they will plant them around the churchyard during class. If theirs are not ready to transplant outdoors, you will want to have a small flat of bedding plants ready to substitute. Enjoy a time of fellowship and refreshments with the class members.
05 min. When the members are seated quietly, ask one of them to bring an open Bible to the worship center table and to light a candle to signal the beginning of class. Offer an opening prayer. For example, "Loving Father God, please direct our attention to the way Jesus wants us to live. Help us to do good to others and not follow the wrong way. Help us to keep our eyes on Jesus Christ our Savior and Lord."
05 min. Briefly review the lessons of the past two Sundays. Explain that taking care of the land and living things leads us to the important lesson, that of caring for people in the way Jesus told his followers. Read Matthew 7:12, 25:40, Hebrews 13:16 and James 4:17. If members have their Bibles, they may want to read the verses with help. Allow time for them to do this.
10 min. Use the beads and other recyclables that members have brought to class. Pass around the paper lunch bags that they put their names on last week. Make sure there are plenty of materials to work with. Furnish glue, markers and scraps of colored construction paper. Tell each one he or she will make a hand puppet for use in an activity later.
10min. Ask each member to select one other person to work with on the activity. Pass around a 3x5 card to each pair. Depicted on the cards are situations of everyday life that can be resolved by following the Golden Rule in the Scriptures. These situations are also based on the lessons in which ecology is the topic. After the members have discussed how they would solve the situations, show them how they can act each solution out using the bag puppets they have just made.
Some ideas for the cards are:
l. Teach someone to conserve water by turning off the water while brushing his teeth.
2. Teach a friend to conserve water by using the hand watering method in the garden.
3. Show how a member can plant some flowers to make God's house more attractive to others.
4. Help someone clean the classroom after use so it can be used by another group.
5. If someone forgot to put things away from the refreshment table, what should you do?
6. If someone left the candle burning, what should you do?
10 min. There are many possibilities for helping others because Jesus showed us the way of doing unto others as we would have them do unto us. Watch your time schedule so that there is time to plant some flower plants around the church. Tell the members that they will have time to water the plants on the following Sunday. Teachers may have to prepare the holes in advance for this activity. Be sure to extinguish the candle before you go outside for this activity.
05 min. Close the lesson for today by singing "Jesus And Others And You, What A Wonderful Way To Spell Joy." Ask for short prayers from the group to dismiss class.