Jottings on science, religion, technology, pop culture and faith from the Antipodes.

Children's Talks

The flexible jelly bean

Jelly beans rock for children’s talks at church. They’re colourful, taste great, universally recognizable by the kids, and relatively cheap as a prop. You can use them individually, by the handful, or in massive numbers.

Today I was doing the children’s talk slot in church but I’d been busy all week things – thinking about other things, doing other things – so when I had to prepare in a hurry I returned to the jelly beans.

I wanted to talk about God’s ‘hesed‘ – that strong relational aspect of loyalty, faithfulness and steadfast love towards another. Used the example of how my tastes changed over time – from black jellybeans when younger, to green ones, and currently to yellow ones. My favourite jelly bean changes, but God’s promise of and faithfulness in love doesn’t change over time (like my tastes in jelly beans), and is universal (embraces all ‘jelly beans’/people). Ended up handing out the jelly beans to the children – which was good as they were salivating all the way through.

I’ve also used the jelly beans to do an Easter children’s talk:

  • Black – Good Friday, Jesus’ death
  • Blue – The sadness of Easter Saturday
  • Red – Jesus’ blood
  • White – The angels at the tomb
  • Orange – Easter is in autumn here – orange leaves
  • Green – Resurrection, hope, new life
  • Purple – The Kingdom of God

That worked well too. Just be careful how many you hand out though – don’t want the Sunday school/children’s church teachers coming to see you later about children on a ‘sugar rush’ in their programmes 🙂

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