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In 1912, Clarence Crane, a chocolate manufacturer in Cleveland Ohio, USA invented Lifesaver’s as a summer candy that could withstand heat better than chocolate. The candy’s name is derived from its similarity to the shape of the rings used for saving people who have fallen off of ships. But this candy, with the empty hole in the middle, can also be used as an illustration of the emptiness we experience inside without God as the center of a person’s life.

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What You Need

Lifesavers, lifesaver Gummies, or any round candy with a hole in the middle can be used for this game. For some of the games that don’t involve colors you can also substitute polo mints or any candy or or donut shaped breakfast cereal (e.g. Fruit Loops) with a hole in it.

Games using Lifesavers

  • Blind chicken – Each team is assigned a specific color of lifesavers. While blindfolded, a member of each team must pick up a lifesaver from a table and bring it back to the team in his or her mouth. If the sweet is the wrong colour, the player has to start again. The team is allowed to shout instructions to their team member.
  • Candy Introductions – Get enough lifesavers for each person to be able to have at least five pieces. Pass around the candy and tell each participant to choose anywhere from 1 to 5 lifesavers of a color that they want. Instruct them not to eat it yet, though. After they have chosen their candy, you tell them what each candy type/color represents. (Example: Red = Favorite hobbies, Green = Favorite place on earth, Blue = Favorite memory, Yellow = Dream job, Orange = Wildcard – tell us anything about yourself!)
  • Cutting it Close – Fill a teacup with flour, packing it firmly, then flip it over onto a plate and place a Lifesaver candy on the top of it. Each youth takes a turn cutting the flour with a knife. Whoever makes the lifesaver FALL, has to fish it out with their mouth! No hands are allowed!
  • Guess the Color – Divide into groups of 8-10 with the same number of youth on each team. Teams line up for a relay race with the first member of each team blindfolded. With directions from their team, the blindfolded person must find their way to a hanging bag full of individually wrapped lifesavers candy or lifesaver gummies, open one and put it in his or her mouth. Then they must shout the color to a judge with their mouth open so he or she can identify if the color is correct. If it is correct they return to their team and sit down. If it is incorrect they get back to the end of the line on their team and must go again. First team to have everyone identify the correct color of the candy wins. or some extra fun place a super tart or sour candy among the lifesavers and watch the lucky person who gets it.
  • Lifesaver Distance RollĀ – The objective is to roll a LifeSavers candy along the ground the farthest. Conditions: The candy may not leave the ground and must roll on its edge.
  • Lifesaver Horseshoes – Construct two ring toss pegs by placing a toothpick vertically in a slice of bread for each team. Youth attempt to toss LifeSavers candies onto their team’s toothpick for points. Each player gets two tosses. The nearest lifesaver to the stake counts as one point. If both of a player’s lifesavers are closer than the opponent’s, that player scores two points. If the lifesaver lands on the peg (called a ringer) then three points are scored. In the case of one ringer and a closer lifesaver, both lifesavers are scored for a total of four points. If a player throws two ringers, that player scores six points. If each player throws a ringer, the ringers cancel and no points are scored.
  • Lifesaver Measles – Youth must stick licked lifesavers on someone’s face. If you want a more hygienic version, provide a saucer with some water to get the lifesavers wet. Any that fall off during the game, must be put back on. The first to get them all to sick to a team members face or to have the most stuck on the face after a given time limit wins.
  • Lifesaver on a String – Sit the youth in a circle and cut a piece of string long enough to reach around the entire group. Thread a Life Savers candy on the string and then tie the ends together. All players must place both hands on the string holding it so that each hands makes a fist around the strong. Select one youth to be “it” and have him stand in the middle of the circle. He must close his eyes while the players pass the candy ring from fist to fist around the circle. When he says, “Freeze,” the players must stop passing the lifesaver. The person in the center has three guesses to correctly identify who has the lifesaver hidden in his or her fist. If he guesses correctly, he selects the next player to be “it.”
  • Lifesaver Puzzles – Choose an equal number of lifesaver candies for each team. If you want to make it more difficult, use candies of the same color. Break the lifesavers into several pieces and place them on a saucer. Teams must reassemble the pieces. The first to correctly do so wins.
  • Lifesaver Race to the Middle – Two contestants face each other with a long piece of string between them and a lifesaver tied to the exact middle of the string. The string is placed with one end in each player’s mouth. At your signal they must pull the string into their mouth and move toward the candy in the center of the string. No hands are allowed. The person who gets the candy in their mouth the first is the winner. Beware – there might be some accidental kissing involved.
  • Lifesaver Relay – Give each player a toothpick to hold in their teeth. The leader places a Lifesaver on the toothpick of the player at the head of each line. It is then passed from toothpick to toothpick until it reaches the end of the line. If the candy is dropped, it must be quickly sent back by hand to the beginning of the line and be started down the line again. Have a few extras in case they break when dropped. The winning team is the one whose Lifesaver reaches the end of the line first. Instead of toothpicks, you can also use hard, uncooked spaghetti or coffee stirrers. Drinking straws are usually too big to fit into the lifesaver.
  • Lifesaver Ring Toss – Place an apple on a table so that it does not roll and then place one or more toothpicks in the top of the apple. From a designated distance, the youth must toss lifesavers onto the toothpicks for points. Highest score in a given time limit wins.
  • Lifesaver Scavenger Hunt – Each group of youth has 1 minutes to collect their own colour of lifesavers which are spread out throughout the room. You can hang them on almost anything. Just beware those that are never found are great at attracting ants.
  • Lifesaver Seekers – Fill two pie tins or plates with flour. Drop several Lifesavers in each tin and mix them in so they are not visible. Smooth out the surface. Two youth must race to see who can retrieve the most Lifesavers, using mouths only, in one minute.
  • Lifesaver Team Colors – Give lifesavers candies to everyone as they enter the room so that there is an equal number of each color. Players can suck on the lifesavers candy or just place it on their tongue. Without speaking they must gather in teams according to the color of the lifesavers by sticking out their tongues so others can see the color.
  • Lifesaver Towers – Youth are given a pile of lifesavers and must stack them into the tallest tower possible in 60 seconds. Players can rebuild their tower if it falls within the time limit. When the time is up, the player or team with the tallest standing candy tower wins the game.
  • Lifesaver Toss Game – Place six teacups in a vertical row, one in front of the other. Mark a starting line about 4 feet from the first teacup. Give each player six LifeSavers to try to toss in the teacups. The players must make one candy in each one of the labeled buckets. Award a prize to the first team player who lands all his candies in the individual teacups. If you want to make it easier use bowls or saucers rather than teacups.

TAKE IT TO THE NEXT LEVEL

MAKE IT SPIRITUAL

Lifesaver’s Candy is known for the hole in the middle. At it’s center is emptiness. Unfortunately, this also describes a lot of youth. Outside everything seems sweet, but inside there is an emptiness.

In the Bible, Solomon had the opportunity to try everything that is supposed to make us happy and bring pleasure in life. But everything he tried left him empty inside. (Ecclesiastes 2:1-11)

  • What was Solomon’s goal in this passage?
  • What are some of the things Solomon mentions in his pursuit of happiness?

MAKE IT PRACTICAL

Inside everyone of us is a God-shaped hole that only God can fill. If God is not the center of your life, everything in life will leave you feeling empty.

  • What are some of the foolish things youth and adults do to find pleasure and happiness?
  • Why should our meaning, our happiness, be centered in Christ?
  • What things can a person do to make God central to everything in life? To their goals? To their happiness? In their pursuits?
  • What makes life meaningful?

MAKE IT PERSONAL

  • What are some of the accomplishments you are most proud of? Why?
  • What are some things in life you find meaningful? Why? Are they things that will stick with you as having meaning for a long time to come? For an eternity? Why or why not?
  • What things do you sometimes find meaningless in life? How can you find meaning in them?
  • How can you make Christ more central to your life this week?

ADDITIONAL SCRIPTURE VERSES

  • Mark 8:36 – “What good is it for someone to gain the whole world, yet forfeit their soul?”
  • Galatians 2:20 – “I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.”
  • Philippians 3:7-9 – “But whatever were gains to me I now consider loss for the sake of Christ. What is more, I consider everything a loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whose sake I have lost all things. I consider them garbage, that I may gain Christ and be found in him, not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but that which is through faith in[a] Christthe righteousness that comes from God on the basis of faith.”
  • 2 Corinthians 5:17 – “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!”
  • Romans 14:8 – “For whether we live, we live unto the Lord; and whether we die, we die unto the Lord: whether we live therefore, or die, we are the Lord’s.”
  • Paul says, “For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us.” (Romans 8:18) That tells me that being crucified with Christ, having our meaning from Him makes time irrelevant for we are in Him the timeless one.
  • Matthew 22:37-40 – “Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with thy entire mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.”

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