196 - Jeremiah at the pottery


15 minute Story planner

Jeremiah 18–19
The Children’s Bible in 365 Stories by Mary Batchelor, page 224

Jeremiah was a prophet to the people living in Judah; he was one of God’s messengers. He listened to God and passed God’s messages on to the people. 

1. Setting the scene  - 2 mins 
Find the Old Testament section in a Bible.
Show and talk about 'The Old Testament FlashCards' cards one to seven

2. Starter question - 1 min  
Have you ever dropped a plate? I hope it was a plastic one!
Sometimes we accidentally drop breakable things. It’s sad to see a dish smash into tiny pieces, especially if it’s new or one of our favourites. But imagine dropping a dish on purpose. Imagine buying a new pot then throwing it to the ground so that it broke into hundreds of pieces… who would do a thing like that?

3. Tell the story with props - 4 mins

  • A piece of soft clay
  • A clay jar or something similar 
  • ‘You have grown hard and disobedient…’ speech bubble (see Printables)

Click on the images at the beginning of this post for more resources from the web

4. Story activity - 6 mins
Option 1 - Enjoy the puzzles in this weeks Dead Sea Comic Caper (see Printables)

Option 2 -A Broken pot jigsaw puzzle
You will need: ‘Broken pots jigsaw’ (see Printables), scissors and envelopes.

1. Before the session print off enough pots for one per child.
2. Cut each of the pots into five pieces. They do not have to be cut up in the same way but the pieces for each puzzle should be kept together in separate envelopes - one puzzle per envelope. On the front of each envelope write a number. Each number needs to be different. One at a time take the pieces out of the envelopes and write the corresponding number on the back of each piece - i.e. if an envelope has a number ‘1’ on it - write the number ‘1’ on the back of all five puzzle pieces.
3. Encourage the children to sit in a circle. Give each child an envelope. Ask them to remove the pieces from the envelope and hand them to you. The children should keep their envelope. Mix up the pieces then hand five back to each child - they should have various pieces from different puzzles. The aim of the game is for each child to collect their original puzzle pieces (i.e. the pieces should match their envelope).
4. To start the game, the children should look at the back of the puzzle pieces you have just given them. If any belong to them they should be placed number side down in front of them.
5. They should then pass a puzzle piece they do not want to the person on their left, at the same time receiving a new piece from the person on their right.
6. If the new piece belongs to them they should place it on the floor number side down. Eventually everybody should be able to put their puzzle pieces together to make a pot.

To prevent any cheating children may need to conceal from one another which ‘numbers’ they are trying to collect.

5. Reflective prayer - 2 mins  
Father God we think about this story. We imagine Jeremiah watching the potter who carefully and patiently worked with the clay to make a beautiful pot.  We think about Jeremiah's first message: ‘If only people were willing to say sorry and change their ways’. Father please help us to be willing to say sorry when we have done something wrong, help us to keep saying ‘Yes’ to your love and forgiveness day after day. Father help us to be people that are prepared to change - who are willing, with the help of your Holy Spirit, to learn and grow to be more like Jesus and live the way you created us to live.

Father we think about Jeremiah's second message. We imagine the dreadful mess as the pot broke into many pieces. Father we think about the mess we can sometimes make when we get things wrong and make poor choices. Father help us to turn to you; to remember that we can pray through our problems and trust you in our troubles. Father we thank you that whatever mess or muddle we find ourselves in you love us more that we can ever imagine and you will keep helping us through our difficult times. Amen  

With younger children, or during a shorter session you may wish to select just one or two phrases from the reflective prayer.

Alongside this story, make the craft...

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