Lesson 6: The True VineIntroduction: Get connected activity
Have a student attempt to turn on an electrical device that is not plugged in. Try plugging it into something besides an electrical outlet (have another student hold the plug, put it under a pillow, attach it to a chair...). Ask the students why the device won't turn on. (It's not connected to the power source - not plugged in to the right thing)
Have several branches from a plant in some vases. Some can be freshly cut. Some a little older. Others should be wilting. If possible, also have a potted plant. Ask the students why the branches are dying. (They aren't connected to the plant)
Discussion: Read John 15:1-11. Ask the following questions.
- Who is the vine? (Jesus)
- Who is the vinedresser (the caretaker)? (God the Father)
- Who are the branches? (Jesus' followers)
- What is the fruit? (the good things that they do)
- Why do some branches bear more fruit than others? (they are connected better to the vine)
- How do Christians prove they are followers of Jesus? (doing things like He would)
- How are Christians able to do those things? (by staying connected to Jesus and His Word, the Bible)
- Why did Jesus tell his disciples these things? (to bring them joy)
Craft: Soda Bottle painting from AlphaMom.com
- soda bottles (enough for one for each student if possible)
- pink paint (or other flower color)
- brown or green paint
- paint brushes
- markers or crayons
- Using a paint brush, paint a vine with some branches coming off of it.
- Dip the bottom of the bottle in the flower color paint and stamp it beside the vine to make the flowers.
- Add the Bible verse (John 15:5 - "I am the vine, you are the branches; he who abides in Me and I in him, he bears much fruit, for apart from Me you can do nothing"
Game: Vine tag (like chain tag)
- Have one person start out as "it". Define the boundaries for the kids.
- When "it" tags someone, they must hold hands and form a chain/vine.
- They continue to be "it" and chase others. Only the people on the ends (with a free hand) can tag someone.
- Anyone tagged joins the vine until everyone is part of the vine.
Game: Link tag or elbow tag
- Define the boundaries for the kids. Have everyone grab a partner and link elbows with them.
- Chose one pair and a partnerless child (if you have an odd-numbered group) to be unlinked. Assign one to be "it".
- Whoever is "it" chases those who are unlinked. The unlinked person can join a pair of linked kids and is now safe, but the person on the other end of the link must then become unlinked and can be tagged.
- After you have played for a while and everyone seems tired, discuss how it was better to be linked then unlinked. Compare that with abiding in Christ.
Songs: Sing John 15:5 to help the kids remember the Bible verse.
Closing: Show the kids a dead branch. Ask them how the branch got to be that way. (it fell off the tree) Ask them if they want to be like the branch. (no) Ask them how they can avoid being like the branch spiritually. (spend time with Jesus by praying and reading the Bible)
Unit wrap-up craft: "I am..." Spin Wheel from Crafting The Word of God