A child hugs their guardian during Family Service at Trinity Commons

3 Ways Into Sunday’s Stories for Children: Wonderfully Made

The Twentieth Sunday After Pentecost

It’s not easy to keep up with all of the current acronyms and terminology that is continuously being coined and repurposed. If you think you don’t get it or feel left out, Urban Dictionary is usually a good resource. Today, we’re going to use an old parable to explore a new term that speaks for itself: humble-bragging.

As we’ve noticed this fall, Jesus used parables to make a point, especially about matters of good character and behavior. Rather than shaming or calling out individuals, even people who were trying to insult him, Jesus sometimes exaggerated character flaws and situations in the parables and made them funny. By doing this, his point was made clear, but it also represented God’s kin-dom in loving and forgiving terms, which turned the former interpretations of religious laws of crime and punishment upside down.

We are all wonderfully made, and we all make mistakes, and we can all change and grow.

Print, fold, read, and color the story booklet.

A line drawing of the pharisee and the tax collector featured in one of Jesus's parables

1. Sing and Dance

Sing and “waltz” along to It’s Hard to be Humble, or act it out. Feel free to exaggerate and ham it up.

Oh Lord, it’s hard to be humble
When you’re perfect in every way
I can’t wait to look in the mirror
‘Cause I get better lookin’ each day.

2. Play and Pray

Play Yes, AND… Group or partner up!

Two people: Sit across from each other with the space of about one body length between you. Grab a soft ball or small plushie. First person says, “I like me because ________,” and then say the other person’s name and toss the ball to them and say, “AND I like you because ________!”

Three or more: Sit in a circle with the space of at least one body length between you. Grab a ball of yarn. Before naming and tossing, hold the loose end of the string with one hand, then use the same statements as above. Continue until a web of yarn connects everyone in the circle.

Pray: Dear God, you created every human in your image and full of love. How wonderful! When we compare ourselves with others, help us remember no one is better than anyone else. You love us all the same. Amen.

3. Create

Create a mad-libs parable. Fill in the blanks. Ask for help with the grammar terms, if you need it. Read it through. Even if at first it seems to make zero sense, see if you can find a message in it when it’s completed.   

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