If you have been doing kids ministry for any length of time you have done this. We start with a cool object and work backwards and try to fit the bible into our lesson instead of teaching the bible and thinking of an object that could illustrate what we just taught in God’s word. So I thought I would delve into the reasons why kids pastors abuse object lessons.
Over using the same illustration – The first week you tell the kids about how Toothpaste is like lies you once it out you can’t get it back in. Your lesson went so well you decide to use toothpaste again a few weeks later this time toothpaste is like sin, it makes a mess and it only comes off with the Water of God’s word. Boy in the front raises his hand I thought toothpaste was about lies. You – well a lie is a sin right.
Paying so much for a prop – You are going to use it if it kills you. – I bought a flaming bible for 30 bucks because it sounded cool. What can you use a burning bible for? Not much I found out. Did I force that object lesson into a lesson it had no business being in? Absolutely.
Preaching with a lab coat on – Thinking that a science lesson you saw on TV would be cool Kids church – and searching your bible for something that would be remotely close so you can use Bill Nye’s experiment. The end result is a great demonstration of Science and a not so great use of Biblical hermeneutics.
The co-dependent message – You try and fix a so-so kids message with a better than so-so object lesson. The end result being that both can’t live without the other when really neither should have been shared in public.
The stick through the boring part for the good part. – I have actually heard some kid’s pastors refer to the Bible story as the “boring part” they actually said that. That same kids pastor would get very excited by games and object lessons. If you think the bible is boring you will convey that to the kids and have no business anywhere near a kids church
You know you’ve done it. How do I know? Because I have. Our kids deserve better. We can fix this whole problem by doing one simple thing. Start with the Bible then think what would best help illustrate that part of the bible. We want the Bible to be the focus not your baking soda volcano.