Advent: Week 3
The Shepherds Show the Way to Bethlehem
What a wonderful opportunity we have to celebrate Advent with our children! Our hope is that this guide helps you to enter worship and marvel at the miracle of the incarnation together. We encourage you to do more than just watch this story - engage in the story with the help of this guide and make the video just one part of the worship experience. Each week of Advent we will update with a fresh story and wondering questions, but the general liturgy will stay the same.
Time required: 30 minutes
Gather these supplies: (keep them together for next week!)
long scarf or strip of fabric for a road
toy building or blocks to represent Bethlehem
toy person to represent a prophet, Mary & Joseph, and perhaps a donkey, shepherds and sheep, (Playmobil, Legos, dollhouse person, figures from your Nativity set)
piece of paper & simple drawing supplies
computer to watch the story on
matches or lighter
and finally, a set apart time and space for this worship activity.
Centering on God
Begin by having a brief conversation about Advent - What week of advent is it? What comes after advent? Advent means "waiting." What do we wait for during Advent? What comes to mind when you think about waiting? and any other questions that are natural to you. You could sing a song with your child or get ready to listen to the story by singing "Be Still and Know that I am God."
Hear the Story
Watch the recorded story
Talk with your child about what curiosities arise from this story.
I wonder how the Shepherds felt when the Angel appeared?
I wonder what they talked about on the way to Bethlehem?
I wonder what they will do when they find Jesus?
Ask your child if they want to retell the story using your supplies (road, figures, etc.) or they might want to draw or build the story another way. With the piece of paper, your child might want to make a card to go along with the Shepherds on the road, like they saw in the story. Give your child 5-10 minutes to explore the story creatively.
Light the candle and say, "Jesus said, "I am the Light of the World." We light the Christ candle to remind us that Christ is with us as we hear the word of God. The story we heard today is in the Bible." Read from the Bible slowly and meaningfully.
Give thanks, ask God to help people in need, etc.
At the end of your prayer, say, "Now we are going to change the light on our Christ candle. Watch what happens when the light goes out. See the smoke spread around! Do you smell it? When the light changes to smoke, it reminds us that Jesus is with us, even when we can't see him."
Give your child a hug and bless them in Jesus' name.