THE WIDOWS MITE: GIVING
Tell the children that we are going to pretend that we are in the temple or at church at the time that Jesus was alive. (Depending on your group size, you can either give a few (10) pennies to a few children…or to the whole group (put the pennies in a cup). Designate one girl to be the widow (put a towel over her head like a head covering and only give her two pennies.) You can set the basket in the middle of the room. You (the teacher) will be the first one to put the money in the basket.
Tell the children that they are pretending to give God some of their money. Tell them to count with you as each person drops in the money. Make sure the widow drops in the smallest amount (so everyone aside from the widow should have more than 2). Let the widow be last.
You start off by holding a handful or cup of pennies. SAY: “I have about 100 pennies. I wonder how many I should give God.” Count out 8 pennies. Show the children the 8 pennies as you count with them. 1…2…3…up to 8.
Have all the children give 3 or more pennies out of their cup of 10 pennies. (Have your assistant help them one at a time to put anywhere from 4-8 pennies in the basket.)
The last person will be the widow. She should only have the two pennies. Have her take each penny and drop them into the basket (both). Show everyone that her cup is empty. Have everyone sit back down.
One day Jesus went to the Temple (church). He watched the people put their money into the treasury (or a basket). He saw some rich people putting a lot of money in the basket. Then he saw a widow (a women whose husband died) give 2 small coins (like pennies). She had no other money. She gave everything she had to God. Jesus said the poor widow gave more than everyone else did.
(GET THE BASKET AND TAKE 2 PENNIES OUT. PUT THEM ON THE FLOOR. TAKE THE REST OF THE MONEY IN THE BASKET AND CLUMP IT NEAR THE 2 PENNIES. HAVE ALL THE CUPS IN FRONT OF THE CHILDREN…EVEN THE EMPTY ONE IN FRONT OF THE WIDOW.)
ASK THE CHILDREN: “How can that be, that 2 pennies is more than all this money?” (Try to elicit that the widow gave all she had and everyone else went home with money left over. If the children do not say that…then the teacher should make that point.)
God is so happy when we do our best and give him all that we have.
Example: If you do a job for mom and dad, do it with a smile. Don’t complain. If you are playing at school or at church, ask one of your friends to play with you and share what you are playing with, and then clean everything up without being asked.
God will be happy if we do our best. Go over Bible verse with the children. Pray with the children.
“…It is more blessed to give than to receive.” Acts 20:35
Thank you, God, for the many, many blessings you have given us. Help us to be grateful for them and to be willing to share and not to be selfish. In Jesus’ Name, AMEN!!
- A basket
- Towel (head covering)
- Plastic cups