this year at vine family worship we are working through our dawson kids blueprint model. each family worship night takes a deeper, hands-on, and family focused look at one of the points in our blueprint theme for the year. “the fall” was the topic of our second vine family worship, so we created a blackout family worship that would take a look at the seriousness of sin, but also how the light of Jesus Christ breaks though the darkness. (all families were encouraged to dress in all black.)
we always begin each family worship with an early arrival activity. we want to engage families as soon as they are seated at their tables. here is early arrival activity sheet that was placed on each table that night:
when it was time to begin, we led the families through the following Bible-centered, interactive experience.
• as a family read romans 5:12, “therefore, just as sin entered the world through one man, and death through sin, and in this way death came to all people, because all sinned”
• family activity – the person with the next closest birthday stood while the kids wrapped them in crepe paper and the adults wrapped them in cling wrap. this was so much fun to watch. some tables had kids getting wrapped and others had parents getting wrapped.
• family discussion question – “how is this cling wrap and crepe paper like sin?”
• we then read aloud john 8:34, “very truly i tell you, everyone who sins is a slave to sin.” then we had families discuss this question: “what does it mean to be a slave?”
• to further stress the point of how sin binds us, we played a game. each table was given an object to pass quickly around the table. the object was to be passed as quickly as possible around the table with everyone touching it. yes, even the person that was wrapped in “sin” had to try to participate. we then had families discuss this question “how does being a slave to sin affect those around you?”
• next the families read 1 john 1:8 “if we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.” we asked “what if the person wrapped up at their table just pretended that it never happened and they were not wrapped in cling wrap and crepe paper?” “how is this like when we claim to have no sin?” we are only fooling ourselves.
• families then read 1 john 1:9 “ if we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” finally the person who had been bound in sin for most of the night was unwrapped by those at their table. 🙂
• we ended this experience time by singing “nothing but the blood.” we challenged the families to really think about each word they sang and to savor the fact that only the blood of Jesus cleanses us from our sin.
• next asked ask each family member to take off their labels of sin they were wearing (from the early arrival activity) and trade them for one of the candles on their table. (each table had a candle for each person.) as they held their candles the Gospel of Jesus Christ was presented and we shared with children that Jesus breaks through the darkness and brings life. we no longer need to be slaves to sin and be trapped in darkness, we have a Savior and His name is Jesus. at the end of this time we had each person turn on their candle (we did battery candles) and we closed the night in several songs by candlelight. we sang “Christ is risen”, “i saw the light”, and at the end, with only voices and candles in the darkness, sang “this little light of mine.”
i say it often and will say it again… family worship is one of my favorite parts in ministry.