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Big Love

Tree decorations

Baby in manger cake

The Star of Bethlehem

Prayer tree in church

Puppets singalong

Christmas Messy Church - 24 November 2018

The Messy Church Christmas theme was 'God loved the world so much'

Today we were giving the space in the busyness of Christmas to stop and consider the enormity of God sending his Son, because he loved the whole world so much. His Son, who would live, heal, teach, welcome, care, die, rise again, and return to heaven for each one of us. As we reflect on this story, we pray that the depth, width and height of God’s love would be known more deeply by each us.

Our activities included

BIG LOVE - We wrote the letters L O V E, one on each board in large bubble letters. to express how we felt about the love God showed at Christmas by sending His Son Jesus to be with us.We talked about: why sending Jesus is such a big expression of God’s love.

CHRISTMAS TREE DECORATIONS - Wrapping three rings with the tinsel, each one a different colour, we then left a piece of thread at the start to hang up the decoration. We talked about the three different colours of decoration, and how they remind us of God’s love for us at Christmas – red for his sacrifice, green for his gift of eternal life, and gold for his kingship.

BETHLEHEM BY NIGHT - We made a silhouette scene of Bethlehem by night. There were houses, inns, stables, Mary and Joseph, kings, and shepherds,and of course baby Jesus. We talked about the incredible event that took place in this little town. What would you have seen, heard, experienced if you had been there in that time, on that night?

STABLE DECORATION -  We used wooden lollipop sticks.  Using three halved sticks we made a Mary, Joseph and Baby Jesus. The rest made the stable, which we decorated, making the roof GOD SO LOVED THE WORLD THAT HE GAVE HIS ONLY SON. We talked about how God could fit into a feeding trough in a stable. It took a whole lot of love, for the king of the universe to become a tiny baby. Why did he do that?

GOD LOVED THE WORLD CHRISTMAS TREES - Making decorations for a Christmas tree fit for a king. How can we remember the words of John 3, 16? 'For God loved the world so much that he gave his only Son'. He gave his Son so that anyone who believes in him may not be lost, but have eternal life. We were left a challenge: every time we see a Christmas tree, can we remember the verse (as well as enjoying the lights)

BABY IN THE MANGER - This is the one you can eat! We used icing and colouring to make a cake into a baby in a manger, frosting for the hay, then a jelly baby for Jesus. A little blanket over the baby was made from a little piece of royal icing. We talked about what babies are like when they are just born. What can they do? What do they need? The God of the universe became a baby who needed his nappy changed because he loved the world so much. How can we thank him?

CELEBRATION TIME - We headed over to the church where we heard the story of Christmas and  listened to the puppets do a version of version of Michael Buble's "just haven't met (Him) yet."  Children from the audience came out to help the nativity play unfold. The children wrote prayers on post it notes and brought them out to the Christmas tree and stuck them to the brightly coloured baubles, while listening to 'Walk with You'. We finished by singing together 'Down to Earth'.

A magnificent Christmas dinner awaited us on our return to the hall. Turkey and all the trimmings, with sticky toffee pudding or ice cream and jelly to finish off.

A wonderful start to the Advent season, awaiting the birth of God's son Jesus.

Messy Church will return in the New Year.
Published - 27 November 2018
Penicuik: St. Mungo's Parish Church (Church of Scotland). Scottish Charity No SC005838