small globe held in a hand

Church at Home // Looking after the World

This is part four of a four part series on The World God Made.
You’ll find the other sessions here:
1. Creation
2. God made people
3. The Rules in the Garden

This session is a kind of round up of The World God Made and provides a prompt to chat about how we can look after the world. You might want to use it to have a think about some practical ways you might choose to look after the world together, or to do a little research about climate change or use it to chat about how social isolation is all about us looking after the people God made.

If you want to sit down and do ‘kid’s church’ with your kids this can probably be used as it is but I also hope that the ideas might serve as prompts for thinking about how you can chat together throughout the week. I hope most of the things needed are accessible or easy to interchange with things you have in the house!

Please do pick and choose what works for you and don’t feel restricted by the order I’ve written this in. You’ll also notice that lots of bits repeat between sessions as I’ve found that under 5s love and learn so much from routine and repetition. I hope that this will be helpful for you as a family to connect with God whilst you’re trying to figure out what ‘church at home’ looks like for you.


The World God Made – Looking after the World (4)

Start by thanking God that he’s with you. When we pray it’s like stopping and saying hello to God and asking Him to speak to us, teach us things and have fun with us today. 

CHATTING

We’ve been reading lots about how God made the world. What is your favourite thing in the world?What is your favourite thing that God has made?

SUNG WORSHIP

Creator God by Nick and Becky Drake is a great one for thinking about all the things God made. There’s also a version with actions here which you might like to learn together.

PLAY TIME

Cardboard boxes, yoghurt pots, any kind of clean rubbish/recycling!
Use whatever bits you can find to make models together. You could decorate with tin foil and stickers if you have any. Talk together about how the things you’re playing with could have been thrown away in the bin (I mean they probably still will be but for now the kids won’t think about that!), but that we have saved them because we can use them for something else. Talk to them about how God made such a wonderful world and we can keep it tidy by putting our rubbish in the bin and not on the ground, and by using things again if we can, instead of throwing them out.

Petals and leaves
Have a selection of different coloured petals and leaves (if you have opportunity to gather them) to look at together. You could make this part of your daily exercise to go out and look rather than craft if that’s an option. Use your petals and leave to make pictures, either sticking to paper or just arranging them. Talk together about the amazing things that God has made and how many beautiful colours God made in the world around us.

Book
Put out a selection of books about creation and all the things God made. Include books about how God made people. Put out some children’s Bibles and if you get a chance, read the children the story of creation from the Bible. Talk to the children about how God made such a wonderful world. Ask the children if they can think of any ways that we can help look after God’s world?

Books
Get out a selection of books about creation and all the things God made. (These could literally be any books with nature, animals or people in!) You could include a Bible and read the story of creation together too. Talk together about the pictures and how God made such a wonderful world. Can we think of any ways that we can help look after God’s world?

INTRO ACTIVITY

When I did this session with 3-5 year olds they loved this activity so much we did it over and over again with them enthusiastically answering my, ‘where does rubbish go?’ question with ‘IN THE BIN!’ So, you might want to do it as an intro to the story again later, or save it as a response to the story instead.
Put little pieces of ripped paper and things that you can pretend is litter all over the floor. Have some containers and tidy up the area together by putting the rubbish in the bin. Talk together about how God made a beautiful world and that we can help look after it by keeping it clean and tidy.

STORY TIME

When I did these sessions with children at church I used a song to encourage them to sit down for a story, we sung it every week so they knew it always meant it was story time. I’m not sure if I’d use this at home or not but thought I’d include it in case it’s helpful.

Sing the sit down song (Tune: “If You’re Happy And You Know It”)
If you’re ready for a story, come sit down.
If you’re ready for a story, come sit down.
Let’s all gather near, so everyone can hear.
If you’re ready for a story, come sit down.


Sit together to have a story.

Gather together some small bags, tubs or whatever you can find to hold a selection of objects related to the story. You can literally just walk around your house and choose some things which link, some ideas to get you started are:
– A flower
– A leaf
– Some soil
– A piece of rubbish

Wow… all these things are about the things God made. But wait a minute! God did NOT make that piece of rubbish. Who made that piece of rubbish? I think people made it. Let’s hear today’s story about how God needs us to help him keep the world nice and tidy!

BIBLE

Read the story of creation and God making Adam and Eve from Genesis 1 & 2. You could also just re-tell the story using the prompts below.

Here are some ideas for stopping to ask questions and interact with the story together:
– God made the world. He made the sky, the sea and the land. He made the sun and the moon and lots of twinkly stars. He made trees and plants and flowers. He made all kinds of animals. (Gather together pictures and toys which you can use to talk about different parts of the creation story). WOW! God looked at all these things and he said “This world is good. It is really, really good.”
– Then God made people. He made a man called Adam and a woman called Eve. (Use two people figure, or just two toys!) He said to them “Be happy here and please look after my world.”
– Using a mirror talk about God made all the people. He made everyone in our family and he made all your friends and he made you!

– But Oh dear! Sometimes when we look around us at all the wonderful things God made we see rubbish lying on the ground, and in streams and on the beach. Some people have just left their things on the ground and not put them in the bin. Did God make rubbish? No way! Father God made a beautiful world. He made us and he wants us to help look after His world. We can tidy up and help take good care of the world. God loves the world and we can love the world too.
(You could re-do the ‘litter picking’ intro activity again here if your kids are keen!)

PRAYER & PRactical response

Thank you God that you made the world and everything in it. Thank you that you made Adam and Eve and that you made us and love us so much and that you ask us to look after the world.

Have a think as a family about how you could choose to look after God world’s and the people in it this week. Let your children come up with some ideas of their own. Some ideas might be by praying for the world or people, by picking up litter, by planting some seeds, by calling somebody to say hello.. .

Write down one thing each that you’d like to do this week to look after the world and the people in it.

God, thank you for making the world. We pray that you would help us to be amazed by the things you’ve created and learn to love and care for our world more.

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