All of us face tough situations in our lives. We could be having the time of our lives but when bad things happen, the good times are forgotten, and all we can see ahead of us is despair. Christ passed through the gates of Jerusalem triumphantly, people waved palm leaves, cloaks were laid at the feet of the donkey He rode on, the crowds cheered and welcomed Him. Barely a week later, the cheers turned to jeers, it was His cloak that was ripped from Him and it was a whip that greeted Him. This Easter themed object lesson uses a walnut to teach the youth that even in the darkest hour and hopeless situations, something good awaits for those who know the plan of the Master.
- Walnuts, one for each youth
- Fine tipped markers, one for each youth
What to Do
- Give each youth a walnut and a fine tipped marker.
- Ask youth to think of some difficult situations Bible Characters faced that turned out for good. They can search their Bibles for more examples. (See Examples Below)
- Ask the youth to think of difficult times that could end up working out for good for people today? (e.g. Failing a test might lead a youth studying harder and passing a class)
- Then ask the youth to think a situation in their own life where something difficult turned into something good. Once they think of something, have them come up with a word, phrase or symbol that represents that situation.
- Ask the youth to write the word of phrase or symbol onto the shell of the walnut.
- Ask for volunteers to share the word or phrase with the rest of the youth and a little about what happened.
- After the sharing, ask the youth to take their walnuts outside and do whatever it takes to crack open the walnut. (You could also provide a hammer or nut cracker if you wish).
- When everyone has cracked the walnuts, ask the youth to collect all the pieces and return to the room. Encourage them to taste and eat the walnuts.
- Moses: Murder and ran away to desert – Exodus 2:11-22
- Joseph: Sold into slavery – Genesis 37
- Daniel: Carried off as a captive to Babylon – Daniel 1
- Joseph: Accused by Potiphar’s wife – Genesis 39
- Esther: Forced into a harem for a pagan king – Esther 4:14
- Jonah: Swallowed by a whale – Jonah 1
- Paul: Imprisoned in Rome – Philippians 1:12-14
Take It to the Next Level
- How did you feel as you crushed the walnut that represented the difficult situation?
- How is breaking open the walnut and finding something good inside similar to the difficult situations in life – when something good comes out of a bad situation?
Make it Spiritual
- How is Jesus’ death on the cross similar? (Acts 4:27-28)
- What good came out of Christ’s death? Resurrection?
- How is Jesus’ resurrection like tasting the good meat inside the walnut?
Make it Personal
- What does Christ’s death and resurrection mean to you personally?
- How has Christ’s death made a difference in your life for good?
- Psalm 34:8 tells us to taste and see that the Lord is good. How does this relate to the object lesson?
Make it Practical
- What are some tough situations you’re struggling with?
- How does Romans 8:28 and the Easter story give you hope and strength to crush these situations in your life?
“Taste and see that the Lord is good; blessed is the one who takes refuge in him.”
– Psalm 34:8 (NIV)
“And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.”
– Rom 8:28 (NIV)
“‘For I know the plans I have for you,’ declares the Lord, ‘plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.'”
– Jeremiah 29:11 (NIV)
Games and Activities in celebration of Easter.
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