Week 4 objective: To understand that the Holy Spirit is a teacher; Christians believe the Holy Spirit teaches them how to live God's way.
Game - 8 mins
Aim: To play a game about teaching, before talking about the Holy Spirit being a teacher.
You will need: a chair, a coat and a pair of shoes with laces.
Before the session take off your shoes.
Sit on a chair and encourage the children to sit on the floor in front of you. Explain that you would like the children to teach you how to put on a coat and a pair of shoes.
Ask the children to start telling you how to put on the coat. Follow the instructions but interpret them incorrectly, e.g. pick the coat up up-side down, put the wrong arm through the sleeve, put the right arm the wrong way through the sleeve and so on. Eventually allow one of the children to come to the front and hold the coat the right way up then point to the correct sleeve/arm etc. Make sure they don't do it for you as they still need to be teaching you.
Repeat the challenge with the lace-up shoes.
Talk about - 7 mins
You will need: a large sheet of paper or a whiteboard, marker pens, the ‘3 in 1’ symbol (see Printables), the ‘Holy Spirit arrow’ (see Printables) and the ‘How to remember the two main things’ prompt sheet (see Printables).
Before the session write the verse on the whiteboard or paper. Underline the phrase ‘the Holy Spirit’. Read the verse aloud and explain that this verse will help us learn more about the Holy Spirit.
Quickly remind the children that the Bible teaches that there is one true God, three parts; God is three in one. Refer to the ‘3 in 1’ symbol as you explain that the parts of God are called Persons. The three Persons of God are God the Father, God the Son (whom we call Jesus) and God the Holy Spirit. Each of the Persons is fully God. The three Persons are so perfectly joined they are one. There is one God and he is three in one. Hold up one finger, then three fingers, then one again.
Underline the phrase ‘The Helper’. When Jesus said these words he was explaining that the Holy Spirit would help the disciples. Ask the children what they think the Holy Spirit helped the disciples to do. Explain that the Holy Spirit helped the disciples to live God's way.
Talk about how Christians believe the Holy Spirit still helps them to live God's way today.
Talk very briefly about why Christians want to live God's way. Quickly explain that Christians believe that living God's way is the greatest way they could possibly live. Christians believe it feels right to live God's way because they believe it's the way they were created to live. Living God's way is about two main things: loving God and loving others (draw two hearts next to the verse). If you have time remind the children how to remember ‘the two main things’ by working through the prompt sheet – see Printables.
However the Bible teaches that without God's help it is impossible for people to live his way - it’s just too difficult, people keep making mistakes and getting things wrong. In fact there is only one person who has lived God’s way day after day – that person is Jesus. When Jesus lived on earth he never did anything wrong; he always lived in a way that pleased God. Jesus always loved God (circle the first heart) and always loved others (circle the second heart). The Bible teaches that Jesus showed people the perfect way to live.
So how do Christians live God's way? The Bible teaches that the Holy Spirit helps Christians, he helps them to become more like Jesus. Christians understand that by learning and growing to be like Jesus they will learn and grow to live God's way.
Spend some time talking about how the Holy Spirit helps Christians. Explain that, in this verse, another word for ‘helper’ is ‘comforter’, ‘someone who comes alongside’.
Underline the phrase ‘He will teach you’. Christians believe the Holy Spirit comes alongside to teach and guide them. The Bible teaches that, like a friend, the Holy Spirit comes alongside Christians; he shares what he has with them and encourages them to share their lives with him too. Remind the children that during the challenge, it was much easier when someone came alongside to teach you how to put your coat and shoes on. Remind the children that the person who came alongside you was able to help you understand, step-by-step what to do.
Explain that Christians believe that when the Holy Spirit comes alongside to teach and guide he works in their lives changing them from the inside-out to become more and more like Jesus; to be more peaceful, patient and kind. As the Holy Spirit helps Christians become more like Jesus, more and more they are able to live God's way.
Because Christians believe that the Holy Spirit is good, powerful and wise they believe it is truly wonderful that he comes alongside them; they think it is truly wonderful that the Holy Spirit is their Helper, teacher and guide.
With older children you might want to dig deeper (see Printables) into the topic of the Holy Spirit and how he helps Christians live God’s way.