Shine Your Light

In this week’s lectionary scripture Jesus shares another parable with us. Matthew 25:14-30.

Begin by reading the scripture to the children. Say to the children that this scripture was a little confusing when you first read it, and you had to do some investigating to find out what it meant.

Say to the children that the first thing that confused you was the word talent. Discuss that the word talent in Jesus’s time did not mean the same thing that it does now. Talent was a large sum of money. Just one talent was about what an average person would make in 20 years. That would be about half a million dollars today. And the man in the parable gave one of his servants 5 talents! That sure is a lot of money! Now even though Jesus uses money as the example in this story, I don’t think he was only talking about money. I think Jesus was talking about using what we are given, both the abilities we have and the money we have. I like to think of it as God’s light in us.

Let’s focus on the three servants. Ask the children what did the first two servants do? They went out and invested their money. Do you think they had ever tried those things before? Probably not! I bet they felt a little bit afraid to try something new, but they went out and did their best. They let their light shine! And they were rewarded!

What about the third servant? What did he do? He hid his money and waited. Why do you think he did that? I think he was afraid. But instead of using his gift anyway, even when he felt afraid, he hid the gift. He let his fear control his actions. He hid his light. And in the end he was alone in the darkness..

Ask the children what message this scripture has for us? Guide them to the idea that God wants us to use our gifts and talents (both the ability kind and the money kind)! God wants us to shine our light everywhere we go!

To close sing with the children this version of the song “This Little Light of Mine.” (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NpU1GqoO8i0)

This little light of mine, I’m going to let it shine.
This little light of mine, I’m going to let it shine.
This little light of mine, I’m going to let it shine.
Let it shine, let it shine, let it shine.

Everywhere I go, I’m going to let it shine.
Everywhere I go, I’m going to let it shine.
Everywhere I go, I’m going to let it shine.
Let it shine, let it shine, let it shine.

Even when I’m afraid, I’m going to let it shine.
Even when I’m afraid, I’m going to let it shine.
Even when I’m afraid, I’m going to let it shine.
Let it shine, let it shine, let it shine.

This little light of mine, I’m going to let it shine.
This little light of mine, I’m going to let it shine.
This little light of mine, I’m going to let it shine.
Let it shine, let it shine, let it shine.

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