Sometimes Object Lessons Tank
I got surprised by a nine-year-old girl this Sunday, who didn’t follow the script of my object lesson. I was trying to make the point that, unless God opens our eyes to see him and believe, we are blind to find God on our own. To illustrate this I placed a blind fold on one of my students, in this case a third grade girl. Then, when I was sure she could not see, I held up various kitchen gadgets for the class in front of her. I explained what each object looked like and asked her to try and guess the gadget. I was hoping she would get them all wrong to illustrate how we are blind in our sin and when God opens our eyes to see (taking off the blindfold) we can see clearly. I chose three items, a meat tenderizing hammer, a garlic press, and a cookie ball maker.
Now my clues were pretty obscure. For instance, I said the garlic press was a metal object with two hinges, and three parts with one of those parts having forty small holes in it. The girl’s answer – “a garlic smasher thing.” She also guessed the meat tenderizing hammer. When it came to the cookie ball maker, she said, “Ice cream scoop.” Technically that was wrong, but the only difference between the two is the size of the scoop.
So much for my object lesson, I thought. I went on with the lesson in any case – the children didn’t seem to mind. I simply complimented my volunteer for her great guesses and explained to the class she was not supposed to be able to figure out the objects without me removing the blindfold from her eyes. Then I went on to say that none of us could ever know God without him opening our sinful blinded eyes. In the end, it all worked out ok. But, for the second service, I chose a boy to blindfold and ended up with the opposite problem. Not only did he not guess the objects, he couldn’t figure out what they were even after I removed the covering from his eyes.
My object lesson didn’t work out so well, yet the children loved the guessing game and all wanted a turn. The fun left them more attentive and focused on the message of the Gospel I brought. So, in the end, it didn’t matter much that my object lesson didn’t deliver as planned. The important thing was that I was able to present the gospel message again to the kids and it was another reminder to me that we need to trust the sovereign hand of our God to reach the children in our classroom, even when our object lessons tank.
We’ve tested hundreds of object lessons for all age levels of children in our Gospel Story Curriculum. Just click on the link if you want to check it out.