Stories from CEF

Known by Their Name

-Susan Lingo

Every experienced gardener knows that labeling seeds as they are planted helps distinguish good plants from weeds later. Use the following activity to show kids that Christians should produce the good fruits of love, kindness, compassion and truth. These fruits are formed in the lives of true Christians.

“Can you name some different kinds of garden plants or flowers? (Allow response.) Right—but how do you know the difference between a good plant and a harmful weed? Sometimes they look alike but if the good plants have been labeled with a garden stake like this one, (show sample garden stake) you can know for sure which is which.

“Did you know the name Christian is like a garden stake? The name Christian lets the world know what kind of person you are. The way you live your life must match your special name. If you live God’s way others will know you are truly a child of God.”

Invite a volunteer to read aloud John 13:35 then ask:

  • How do you know a true Christian when you see one?
  • How can you show others you love them?
  • Why is it important for others to know you love and follow Jesus?

“Others know you by what you do and by what you say. Today you’ll be making a garden stake not only to label a plant in your yard but also as a reminder that your love for others helps people know you are a Christian.”

For each garden stake, write John 13:35 on one side of a paint stick using a fine-tipped permanent marker. Then flip it over and write the name of a plant or flower; e.g., rose, marigold or pansy. Decorate the paint stick using colorful markers and plastic jewels. Leave the bottom three inches of the stick undecorated so it can be pushed into the ground.

When the stakes are complete, close with prayer. “Thank You, God, that You know these kids by name. Help people to know they belong to You as they share Your love with others.”

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