This week’s lectionary scripture is Matthew 22:34-40
Ask the child(ren) to name some people they love. You may want to record a list of the types of people (mom, dad, grandma, friend, teacher, etc) Once you have a list of several people ask how we show our love to those people? Do we show our love to our Mom and Dad in the same way we show love to our best friend? Have the child(ren) list several ways they show love (ex: hugs, kisses, smiles, high fives, etc).
Say to the child(ren), “did you know there are rules about who to love?” There is a scripture where Jesus tells us who we should love. Listen as I read to see if you hear what the rules are.” Read Matthew 22:34-40 (if you have Ralph Minton’s Lectionary Story Bible – Year A this scripture is on pg 228 of year A).
When you finish reading ask the child(ren) if they heard the two rules for who to love. What did Jesus say was THE most important thing? Jesus said that loving God was the most important thing.
Ask the child(ren) if they remember the other rule. Remind them that this one was almost as important as the first one. If they need a refresher re-read Matthew 22:39. Acknowledge that loving our neighbors is almost as important as loving God.
Say to the child(ren), “Who do you think Jesus meant when he said to love our neighbor? Do you think he meant only the people that live next door to us? Who else could he have meant?” Discuss the idea that Jesus was telling us to love people everywhere. Even those we have never met. Generate some ideas about how we can show love to people we have never met.
Let the child(ren) know that there is a song that helps us remember this scripture. Sing it together…Love the Lord (I’ve included the song if you’d like to sing along)
To finish give the child(ren) the Love Your Neighboor Handout to complete on their own. Ask them to write, or draw, ways they can show love to the people in their neighborhood, their city, and to people in another country.