Put a Bible inside a box and wrap it like a present. Hide the box somewhere in the room, but don’t make it too easy to find.
As part of this lesson, you will choose three students to help you. You can choose them randomly, but you may find it beneficial to decide ahead of time which students will be a good fit for this activity. Each of these three students will be looking for the Bible with different “directions.”
The first searcher will respond to several different directions given by classmates.
Write the following words on a piece of paper and give it to the second searcher: You are going to search for the treasure on your own. Read these words aloud: “I don’t need these directions, I can find it myself!” Now crumple up the paper and throw it down. Begin searching for the treasure.
Write a list of directions for the last searcher to follow. The final direction will take this student to the Bible. For example: 1. Start in the front of the room. 2. Walk to the door. 3. Go to the drinking fountain. 4. Walk past the windows. 5. Look under the teacher’s desk. (The student will find the wrapped box and hold on to it until you give further instructions.)
Welcome everyone! Today we will be talking about directions. What are directions? Are directions helpful or not? Why do we need them?
Today, we are going to be doing a treasure hunt! Before we begin, I need three students to be today’s searchers. Pick the searchers and ask them to step out of the room so they cannot hear you give directions to the rest of the class. After the children are gone, break your class into three or four groups. Tell each group to give a different set of directions to the first searching student. For example: One group will tell the searcher to go to the back of the room. One group will tell the searcher to go to the windows. One group will tell the searcher to go to the drinking fountain. (None of these directions should lead the first searcher to the treasure.)
Bring the searchers back into the room and say: (David) you can look for the treasure first. As (David) begins searching, each group will tell him to go in a different direction. Let this continue for a minute or two. Then say: You have been looking for a while. Why are you having so much trouble? I guess we better let (Courtney) try. (Courtney) we have some directions that will help you. Remember to give (Courtney) the paper with bogus directions to crumple and throw down.
Let (Courtney) search for a while on her own and then ask her to sit down. Say: (Courtney) didn’t want to use the directions, but maybe (Joshua) will. Ask (Joshua) to read the directions aloud and follow them.
Thank you for following the directions, (Joshua). You found the treasure! We will open it in a minute, but first, I want to talk about what we have done today. Think back to the beginning of the activity. Did (David) have any luck finding the treasure? He had help. He got a lot of directions, but he didn’t know who to listen to. He didn’t know who was telling him the truth. There were too many people telling him where to go and what to do.
Sometimes that happens to us. We have lots of people in our lives telling us what to do—our friends, our siblings, older kids, our parents, our teachers. It can be difficult to know who we can trust and who is telling us the truth.
How about (Courtney)? Why did she have trouble? She refused to use the directions. She didn’t want any help. She wanted to do it her own way. Sometimes you and I are like that, too. Did that work for (Courtney)? No. It doesn’t work for us either.
And then, there was (Joshua). What did he do? He followed the directions and found the treasure.
Okay, now let’s open the box and see what is inside. What is this? Why do you need it?
The Bible is a treasure because it gives you directions for your everyday life. Psalm 119:105 (ESV) says, “Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.” The Bible comes directly from God! It is God’s Word for you. It is God’s directions for your life. The directions you find in the Bible are always true and they are always good for you! Proverbs 3:5–6 (ESV) says, “Trust in the LORD with all your heart and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him and he will make straight your paths.”
God’s Word is a treasure itself, but it also points to the greatest Treasure of all. What is that Treasure? Jesus! The Bible tells us all about Jesus—his life, his ministry, his death on the cross, and his great love for sinners just like us! Why is Jesus the best Treasure of all? Jesus loves you so much that He died to take the punishment you and I deserve. He defeated all of our sins and now, forgiveness is ours! His death and resurrection mean we are forever friends of God. When you and I go to Jesus for help and ask for his forgiveness, we receive God’s grace and we receive the gift of eternal life. Now, that is a REAL Treasure!
Let’s Pray: Heavenly Father, thank you for your Word. Thank you for giving me true and reliable directions for my life. Help me to know your Word better. Help me to read it, understand it, and follow it. Most important of all, thank you for the gift of your Son, Jesus! Even when I mess up, I know Jesus is still my Savior. Teach me to love him more and more each day as I depend on his grace and forgiveness. In Jesus’ name. Amen.
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