Porch Kids Growth Group Questions
LARGE GROUP TIME
WHAT? What are we talking about today?
MUSIC | Worship
"Wise Up" (Kidspring)
"My Lighthouse" (Rend Collective)
ACTIVITY | Eye Patch Plank Walk
- This game is going to require some real focus and help! Walking the plank might not have been as common for pirates as we think it was, but today, we're going to pretend and play a game where we walk the plank!
- INSTRUCTIONS: Select two teams of six kids. Give five kids on each team two eye patches to cover both of their eyes. Set up two, four-inch-wide planks somewhere in your room. Each team will race to get their five eye-patched-pirates across their plank. The sixth member of each team will be responsible for guiding their teammates one at a time to where they need to go. They cannot touch their teammates until they are on the plank, then they can help them balance to get across. The first team to get everyone across their plank wins. Have the kids who are not playing cheer loudly for their teams!
- Did you notice how you had to pay close attention to what your guide was saying to make it to the other side of the plank? I wonder what that has to do with our story today? Let's find out!
ACTIVITY | Captain's Orders
- . Designate one section of the room with painter's tape to be the brig. Have the captain demonstrate each of the commands below. Then, start the game. The captain will call out any one of the commands at a time and the last person to join in the action must go to the brig (have other leaders help spot them). Have Captain Solly make fun comments while the kids are carrying out the commands.
- Oy, me hearties! Well, you done it. This ship is nowhere near ready to sail! But don't worry, Cap'n Solly is here. Just follow me orders and you'll be fine. Each time I say one of the special pirate commands, ye must do what I show you.
- Roll call: Form a single file line, salute, and say, “Aye-aye, captain!” The crew may not lower their salute until the captain salutes back and says, “At ease.”
- Crow’s nest: Pretend to look through a spyglass.
- Swab the deck: Pretend to mop.
- Shark attack: Dance and sing the song, "Baby Shark."
- Break time: Go tag someone in the brig.
- Sailor overboard: Pretend to swim around.
- Drop anchor: Lie on their backs with legs up and act like an anchor.
- Row to shore: Pretend to row a boat while singing, “Row, row, row your boat.”
- Well done, lassies and laddies! Ye all are in ship-shape now!
- What would be a good thing to do in each of the following situations?
- A fellow pirate fell down and skinned their knee, but the galley crew just told you dinner is ready, and if you're late, the captain will be angry!
- You accidentally dropped the first mate's sword into the ocean. The first mate thinks it was one of your shipmates, so it looks like you're off the hook.
- A new matey just joined your ship's crew and is doing everything wrong.
- Today, we are going to talk about how wise choices and the right choices are almost always the same things.
SO WHAT? Why does it matter to God and to us?
BIBLE STORY | Wisdom and Actions
- Let's read Psalm 1:1.
- What do you think "blessed" means?
- A lot of times, people think of blessings as only the good things that we have in our life, such as health, family, food, and other comforts. But we can be blessed even when we don't have everything we want.
- In some translations of the Bible, they use the word "happy" for "blessed." Now, it might not always feel that way, but living the way God wants us to is how we can be truly happy, because only God knows what the absolute best is for us!
- Read Psalm 1:2. What does a blessed person delight in?
- Exactly! God's Law. For us, we could say that means pretty much anything that God says in the Bible.
- Not only do they obey God's instructions, but they also love having the chance to listen to God!
- Let's keep going. What does Psalm 1:3 say?
- Someone who delights in what God says and follows what God says to do is like a strong tree. But not just any tree — a tree that is planted by a stream. That means the tree gets plenty of water and nutrients and is less likely to wither away.
- In pirate terms, we will be a ship that can't be sunk!
- But check out Psalm 1:4-6. What happens if we choose not to live by God's word?
- Someone who disobeys God and doesn't love what God has to say is like a plant with no root that can easily be blown away. Again, in pirate speak, a ship that strays off course.
- Psalm 1 shows us the difference between people who try to make wise decisions and those who don't. The people who make wise choices obey God because they truly love God and believe God knows what's best for them.
- Okay, now it's time to choose our wise adventure by walking one of these two planks:
- The Wise Plank: Spend more time with God and learn what the Bible says.
- The Unwise Plank: Ignore what the Bible says and do whatever feels right to us at the moment.
- Which plank should we walk across based on what we talked about today?
VIDEO | Choose Your Own Adventure, Episode 3
- INSTRUCTIONS: Play this week's episode of Grow TV.
Making the right choice is not as easy as it sounds. Even when the right choice is obvious, there are always things that block us from automatically obeying God.
- For example, let's say someone is saying something mean to your friend. Of course, you want to defend your friend, but it's not that simple. That person might pick on you instead. Your friend might get mad at you and say, "I can stick up for myself!" You might not know what to say and people might laugh.
- There are tons of examples of this kind of back-and-forth inner thinking! So, we teeter-totter back and forth between doing good and not doing anything.
- But instead of listening to and worrying about what everyone else has to say, we can choose to only care about one thing: What God has to say.
- When we focus only on what the Bible tells us to do, it becomes easier to make a wise choice. It's amazing that I can be wise by choosing to do good!
NOW WHAT? What does God want us to do about it?
ACTIVITY | Cannonball Bounce
- Earlier in the book of James, it says to "get wisdom." In this game, we're going to race to see who can get these words that describe God's wisdom: pure, peace-loving, considerate, submissive, merciful, impartial, and sincere.
- INSTRUCTIONS: Choose two kids to play this game. Have two sets of seven plastic cups lined up on a table. Write the six characteristics of godly wisdom on the cups. Use black ping-pong balls to bounce into each cup. The first person to get a "cannonball" in each cup wins. Pro tip: Fill each cup half full with water so the ping-pong balls do not bounce out. (Use this video for reference.) Let more kids try if you have time.
- It's not going to be easy to be peace-loving, considerate, impartial, and any of the other words to describe God's wisdom. Sometimes, we will mess up and miss the mark. But the thing about choosing to do good is that we keep trying . . . that is what makes us wise!
- When we have a choice of where we're going, let's remember our Big Idea: I can be wise by choosing to do good.
- Dear God, thank you for reminding us that there are many things we can listen to, but listening to you and what the Bible says is the wisest choice. Help us to do what is right, not just because we're supposed to, but because we want to. Amen.
SMALL GROUP TIME
- What does "blessed" mean?
- What does a blessed person delight in?
- What does Psalm 1 compare a "righteous" person to? How about a "wicked" person?
- Read James 3:17. What are some words to describe the wisdom that comes from God?
- Why do we need God's wisdom to do good?
- What might be an example of the wrong kind of wisdom?
- What is something good you can do this week?