Wednesday, December 6, 1995

The Children's Box

For those of you who enjoy improve, and who don’t like to plan ahead, the “Children’s Box” is for you.


The process is easy.  Buy a box that is large enough to contain something of interest, but small enough for the child to carry home.  The box should be attractive and have some character about it.  The rules should be laminated and placed permanently inside the box. 


While it may look difficult, it is not.  I’ve done this for years and I’ve never been stumped. 


As the children come forward, I always say “For those of you who are visiting, we never know what is in the box until right now,” and with that I slowly and cautiously look in the box.


When removing the item, the preacher can have some time to gather thoughts by asking questions:

·       Is this yours?

·       What is this, can you tell me about it?

·       Have you had it long?

·       Where did you get this, who gave it to you?


Then you begin to tell something spiritual about the item you pull out of the box.  Believe me, this is easier than it looks.  You have in your mind what you are going to preach, and it is easy to apply the object to the text for the day – but that is not always necessary.


After the message, we have a prayer, I return the item to the child and we give the box to the next child.  I always end with, “Remember, whatever you put in the box has to be approved by a responsible adult at home.  And remember, the rules say nothing alive or recently alive.”  I’m not sure why, but Sunday after Sunday the way I say that prompts some laughter.
Feel free to engage the adults as well.
I always find it helpful to have another adult with me to help keep the children "in line" and to help hand the mike to the children.

The rules in the box are:

Be sure to bring this box to next Sunday’s 10:00 worship service.


You need to place something in the box that the pastor or worship leader can use during the Children’s Devotional.  The pastor and leaders will need to think on their feet as they seek to use what you put in the box for the Children’s Devotional message.  Who knows - you may even “stump the pastor!” 


There are some rules:


1.    Nothing living (no pets, animals, insects or other living creatures).

2.    Nothing that was recently living and is now dead.

3.    Nothing that good common sense tells you might be offensive to our church members.

4.    No books – we don’t have time to read your favorite books.

5.    Nothing that you can’t live without.  We will try to get your item back to you, but remember, your child is responsible for what is in the box.

6.    Finally, whatever you put in the box has to be approved by the adults in your home.


If for any reason you can’t be in church this Sunday, you can give the box to someone who WILL be in church this Sunday - or call the church office at 239-463-3173 and deliver the box to the church office.

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