This lesson is based around the verse 1 John 3:18:
“My little children, let us not love in word, neither in tongue; but in deed and in truth.”
Begin the lesson by handing each child a piece of bubblegum. As the children open and chew their gum, ask them how they would describe the taste to someone who has never tasted it before. Discuss with the class that the taste is hard to describe. After this, suggest that the taste of bubblegum is better to show than to tell; the taste is something that is better to experience, than to be told about.
Ask the children to open their scriptures to 1 John 3:18. Have a member of the class read the verse out loud:
“ My little children, let us not love in word, neither in tongue; but in deed and in truth.”
Discuss with the class what they think this means. Help them to learn the meaning of the verse:
- To “love in word” or “tongue” means to tell someone that you love them, or to profess your love.
- To “love in deed and in truth” is to show your love, by treating others with respect and kindness.
- With the class, think of ways to show respect and kindness to family members and friends. Examples include:
- Showing a friend kindness by sharing your toys
- Showing parents respect by being obedient
- Showing brothers and sisters kindness by playing nicely with them“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”The best way to show our love to God is to follow the example that was set by his son. Use the verse John 14:15:We can show our love of God by following the commandments. When we are respectful to our parents, and are obedient, then we are showing our love of God. When we choose to speak honestly and don’t tell lies, it is another way to show our love. When we treat each other with kindness, we show our love.“Kathy always plays with her friends on the monkey bars at recess. One day, she notices that there is a shy girl who doesn’t talk very much watching them play, with a sad look on her face. Kathy goes to the girl and starts to talk to her, and asks her if she wants to play with them. The girl smiles and says that she would like to play. Kathy and her friends have fun with the new girl, and soon she is their friend too.”Ask the class:
- “Megan has a favorite TV show. She comes home from school excited to see her favorite show, but she sees that her little brother is watching something on the TV. Megan doesn’t want to wait or share, so she picks up the remote and changes the channel. Megan’s brother starts to cry, and Mom puts Megan in a time out.”
- Give the children the following scenario:
- “If ye love me, keep my commandments.”
- Help the children to understand the verse by telling them that God showed His love for them by sending Jesus, to teach and to be an example, and to die for their sins. Now, how can we show our love to God?
- When the discussion has ended, remind the children of how God loves them. If desired, you can use the verse John 3:16:
- Do you think Megan loves her little brother? Is she showing it?
- How did Kathy show kindness and respect to her new friend?
- Remember that treating others kindly shows our love of God? Who is showing their love of God?Our love for God is a little like the taste of bubblegum: it’s not simply something you can say. Just like it’s easier to know the taste of bubblegum when you taste it, it’s easier for others to know we love God, and for God to know that we love Him, when we live by it. We can show our love for our family and friends by treating them with kindness and respect. Whether it’s little things like playing together at recess and sharing our toys, or big things, like choosing to follow the example of Jesus, when we choose the right, we show our love of God.
- Conclude the lesson with the following: