Throughout His ministry, Jesus told many parables to help explain a Biblical truth. In this lesson, we will study the Parable of the Mustard Seed found in Mark 4:30-32.
- God uses small things for big purposes.
- We should never look down the small things.
- God’s Kingdom is growing around the world.
Lesson Guide – The Parable of the Mustard Seed
Many things that begin small become large. Ask your child to name some things which start out small but grow big. For example, seeds are small but become big plants. People start as babies but grow to be adults. An egg becomes an ostrich.
Examine an uninflated balloon (you may also substitute for a stick of gum.) Talk about how small and unimportant it looks. Then begin to blow the balloon up until it is big. (If possible, write a surprise Bible memory verse on the balloon that appears when you blow it up.) If we ignored the small piece of rubber and said it wasn’t much, we would never be able to enjoy a big balloon.
Remind your children that Jesus lived in a day vastly different to our day. When Jesus first began to preach the Gospel, He did not have internet or television. He couldn’t catch an airplane to fly around the world. He spoke to people, and they spoke to other people, and they spoke to still more people.
Lay out a paper towel or napkin. Take a small piece of wet sponge and place it in the middle. The sponge seems very small, but the water in the sponge will spread and wet the whole paper towel.
Using a map or globe, point to Israel where Jesus began his ministry. You may also point out Rome, Corinth, and other Bible places that the apostles carried the Gospel too (we will look at these trips later in the year). Look at other countries on the map and explain that missionaries carried Jesus’ word there too. If you or your church supports missionaries in a country, you may do a more in-depth study. Look at pictures of the missionaries. Say a prayer that the word they are preaching will change lives.
Jesus’s words will grow in hearts and change people. Read Isaiah 55:11. You may choose to memorize it together.
Remind your child that God can use the smallest of actions. Refer to the boy’s lunch provided for thousands of people when Jesus multiplied the fish and the bread.
Think about what ways can you help to spread the Gospel by doing small things? Could you hand out cards to friends with verses in them? Invite someone to church? Teach friends a Bible song? Be kind to someone?
Plant flower seeds into individual small pots. Select some friends. Every time you water or tend the seeds, pray that God would grow His word in these individuals’ hearts. When the plants are big, you may gift them to these friends. Pray and thank Jesus that His word can grow and change lives. Ask Him to grow His words in your heart.
Free Printable Bible Story
Games and Activities
Go on a leaf hunt
Take some paper and crayons with you on a leaf hunt. When you find a tree, make a bark rubbing and leaf rubbing if you find any on the ground. You can try to identify the tree. There are apps and printables which can help you. Add some extra fun by trying to find the longest, widest, etc
Bird nest challenge
Collect some twigs, long grass, straw etc. Try to make a bird nest which is strong enough to hold an egg (a plastic egg may be cleaner 😀 ). You will need to weave the twigs together to make a basic nest shape, before using grass, straw and fallen leaves to fill in any spaces. (Indoors: Use straws and shredded paper).
You will need at least two people for this game. Place some compost or soil on one side of the space and some garden pots on the other. Use at least three per team. The goal is to full your garden pots faster than the other groups. You can only take one pot at a time to fill.
Free Bible Coloring Pages – The Parable of the Mustard Seed
Bible Craft – Seed Tree
What you need:
- Template page
- Coloured pencils
- Pumpkin seeds (or other large seed)
What to do:
- Colour the template page
- Add glue spots onto the branch
- Stick on seeds to make leaves. Allow to dry.
Download the lesson for FREEDonate
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