By Gus Brockmann, Worship and Children's Ministry Director, First Lutheran in Longmont CO
Scripture Focus: Luke 24:13-35
Supplies - an easy to see optical illusion (see the picture to the left, prints well on 11x17)
Faith+Open— After welcoming the children show them the illusion, being careful to talk about the most obvious part (in the attached file, talk about the forest). Once they have looked for a few seconds point out the hidden picture (the tiger in the attached file). Some of the children might spot it before you call attention to it, but that's ok too!
Sometimes, like in this picture, we don't always see what is really there. It's easy to see the trees, but we might not see the tiger until we look at the picture for a few minutes. The Gospel today is a story that takes place on Easter, right after Jesus come back to life. We hear about some people who run into a stranger on the road as they are walking home; at least they think he's a stranger. They invite the stranger to come with them, telling him that it will soon be dark and dangerous on the road. The stranger agrees to go with them, and they talk about just happened in Jerusalem, and the stranger talks about the Bible and tells them stories from the prophets. Once they get home, they make dinner and invite the stranger to sit and eat. The stranger sits with them, picks up the bread, blesses it and breaks it. In that moment, they realize that they are sitting with Jesus! They are amazed that their eyes did not see him, but they knew in their hearts that it was him.
Sometimes when we look at things we don't see the whole picture at first, just like in the illusion. We might not see Jesus all the time, but He is always walking with us and caring for us.
Faith+Prayer: Loving God, we bless you for the gift your Son, Jesus. Thank you for sending him with us a friend and companion. Amen.
Faith+Blessing: Let’s say together making the sign of the cross: God in my head, God in my heart, God on my left and God on my right.
Extended activities: If you meet with children for a longer period of time outside of the worship space here are some ideas:
1. Find additional optical illusion pictures and examine them together
2. Read the story of the Walk to Emmaus from Spark Storybook Bible or Jesus Storybook Bible