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Splash!A Children's Curriculum for Max Lucado's Best-Selling Book, Come Thirsty
By Max Lucado
Thomas NelsonCopyright © 2004 Max Lucado
All right reserved.
Chapter OneLesson 1
The Woman at the Well
Jacob's well can still be visited today. It is located in the center of the town, Sychar, in Samaria. Approximately 9 ft. wide and well over 100 ft. deep, it is fed by a running stream that lies deep below the earth.
In Bible times the well was the only source of clean fresh water the community had for drinking and sustaining life. Each day the women of the community traveled together to the well for their water supply. Pulling, lifting, and carrying jugs of water was hard work and consumed a good amount of time. Then, due to thirst and the necessity of water for life, the women would return to the well again the next day and the next and the next.
Devotional: John 4:1-42
Because the Jews and Samaritans were not friends and because the Samaritan woman was a social outcast, she went alone at a different time of the day for her water. On this day the woman met Jesus at the well. Jesus met her where she was, not only in the physical but also in the spiritual. Despite all the social and political obstacles meant to prevent such a meeting Jesus pursues her in conversation. Despite her natural inclination to avoid the truth, Jesus gently but intentionally brought her to an awareness of herself and who he is. In that moment she "drank" the living water he offered and it gushed up within her producing a woman transformed!
Aren't you and I like this Samaritan woman? By God's grace we meet Jesus at the well where we come to drink from his Word and be refreshed by his Spirit. He's there waiting for us each day. He's there to reveal himself to us and to transform our lives. As we accept his Work, rely on his Energy, trust his Lordship, and receive his Love, our thirst is satisfied. Come to the well and drink!
Welcome Time (15-20 Min.)
Construct a "well" for your classroom.
a large appliance box approximately 3-4 ft. tall, hot glue gun/Scotch[R] tape, brown wrapping paper, black chalk, a 5' thin rope, a bucket, clear fixative spray, a plastic pitcher, and a sharp knife
Remove one side of the large appliance box so that the top is open. Cover the four sides with brown wrapping paper. Use hot glue or Scotch[R] tape to secure. Use the black chalk to draw large stones on all four sides of the box. Gently rub your hand over the chalk lines to smudge the chalk. Spray all four sides with clear fixative. Center and cut a hole at the top of one side of the box. Loop one rope end through the hole and tie a knot. Tie the bucket handle to the other rope end and lower it into the "well."
As the children come into the classroom, direct them to the center of the room where the "well" is placed. Let the children look it over, touch it, and begin to question what it is and what it is doing in their classroom. Answer their questions at this time by saying "I wonder" and repeating their question.
Transition Sit by the well and begin to sing: (tune: The Farmer in the Dell)
Come and sit by me. Come and sit by me. We are almost ready. Come and sit by me.
We're ready to begin. We're ready to begin. All our hands are in our laps We're ready to begin! Yea!
Bible Time (15-20 Min.)
"Come To the Well" Activity
Say: I wonder what this is? (Point to the "well" behind you.)
Does anyone have an idea? (It's a pretend "well.")
I wonder what a well is used for? (to get water)
I wonder why they need to get their water from a well? (In Bible times there were no sinks and faucets. The well was the only place they could get clean fresh water.)
I wonder who uses a well? (In Bible times the women would come to the well each day to get water for drinking.)
I wonder where the water comes from? (an underground stream)
I wonder when people come to the well? (when they are thirsty)
I wonder how it works? (Show the children how the bucket is lowered into the well to fill with water and then pulled up again with the rope. Explain that the water is poured into the container the person brought with them. Let the children take turns "drawing" pretend water from the well and filling the pitcher.)
Hermie & Wormie Visit
Say: "Oh, my goodness, boys and girls, I think I hear Hermie, the caterpillar. Let's sit right here by the well. I do hear moaning and it's coming from over there." (Move to the counter and pick up the decorated "home" of Hermie and Wormie. Open the box, take out the puppets, and situate them properly as you speak.) It is Hermie! And, he has his friend, Wormie, with him.
Hermie: "Oh, boys and girls, I feel so bad! Oh my tummy hurts ... oh ..."
Wormie: "What's the matter, Hermie?"
Hermie: "Oh, my tummy hurts so bad! I was out walking this morning. It was so hot! My little legs couldn't get me home fast enough! Oh my! I was so thirsty! I looked in the fridge and tried everything I could to quench my thirst! Nothing worked! Now I'm still thirsty and my tummy hurts from all the junkie stuff I drank."
Wormie: "Sounds to me like you are dehydrated."
Wormie: "Dehydrated. That means your body needs water. Did you drink any water?"
Hermie: "No, I didn't think of water. I went straight for my favorite soft drinks."
Wormie: "No wonder you feel terrible, Hermie! Your body needs good fresh water. You need a good long drink."
Hermie: "OK. I'll be right back." (Hermie leaves Wormie and then returns.) "Gosh, Wormie, I feel better already!"
Wormie: "I'm glad, Hermie. You need to keep drinking water so you don't get dehydrated again. Right, boys and girls?"
Say: Boys and girls, Hermie learned an important lesson today. He learned the importance of listening to his body. The next time he gets thirsty, what do you think he will do? (Get a drink of water.)
When you get thirsty for a drink of water what do you do? (Go to the water faucet and turn on the water.)
People in Bible times couldn't do that. Do you remember how they got a drink of water to quench their thirst? (Go to the well.)
This morning our Bible story is about being thirsty. Let's pray before I read God's Word to you.
Dear God, thank You for this time together. We know what it's like to be thirsty for a drink of water on a hot summer day. As we listen to your words from the Bible help us understand a different kind of thirst ... our need for you. In Jesus' name, we pray. Amen.
Say: Our story takes place on a hot day. Jesus is walking with his followers from Judea to Galilee. It is a long difficult journey. When Jesus and his followers come to the town of Sychar they stop to rest.
John 4:6-15 NCV (Read slowly with lots of expression. Keep eye contact with the children.)
Jacob's well was there. Jesus was tired from his long trip, so he sat down beside the well. It was about twelve o'clock noon. When a Samaritan woman came to the well to get some water, Jesus said to her, "Please give me a drink." (This happened while Jesus' followers were in town buying some food.)
The woman said, "I am surprised that you ask me for a drink, since you are a Jewish man and I am a Samaritan woman." (Jewish people are not friends with Samaritans.)
Jesus said, "If you only knew the free gift of God and who it is that is asking you for water, you would have asked him, and he would have given you living water."
The woman said, "Sir, where will you get this living water? The well is very deep, and you have nothing to get water with ..."
Jesus answered, "Everyone who drinks this water will be thirsty again, but whoever drinks the water I give will never be thirsty. The water I give will become a spring of water gushing up inside that person, giving eternal life."
The woman said to him, "Sir, give me this water so I will never be thirsty again and will not have to come back here to get more water."
Response to the Story
(Display the poster picture of Jesus and the Samaritan woman at the well.)
Say: In our story Jesus met a Samaritan woman at the well and talked to her. Why did she come to the well? (To get water to drink. Her body was thirsty.) Jesus also offered her "living water." Is "living water" different from the water that was in the well? (yes)
"Living water" is different. The water from the well quenches our body's thirst. "Living water" quenches our thirst for God. Did the woman want the "living water" that Jesus offered her? (yes)
Just like the woman who comes to the well each day for her water, we need to come to God. We can ask God to teach us more about who he is. He will give us a drink from his well of "living water."
Display the teacher visual with the picture of the well and the letters "w ... e ... l ... l." Point to each letter as you say:
He will teach us about his work on the cross, the energy of his Spirit, his lordship, and his love.
Open your Bible again and read the verse.
Say: Today our Bible memory verse is John 7:37: Jesus said, "Let anyone who is thirsty come to me and drink" (NCV). Repeat the words after me. (Repeat the verse in phrases.) Who can say the Bible verse by themselves?
"Come to the Well" (tune: Are You Sleeping?)
Say: OK, boys and girls, let's sing loud and clear.
We are thirsty (2x) (Place both hands at the front of the neck.) Yes, we are (2x) (Shake your head "yes.") We are thirsty To get a drink of water (Raise right hand and act as if drinking water.) Come to the well. (2x) (Exaggerated pretend "walk" to the well.)
Dip, down, deep. (2x) (Act as if dipping deep into the well.) Into the well (2x) The water is flowing (2x) (Move the hands in a wave motion.) It gives us life. (2x) (Move both hands up from in front of chest and out to each side.)
Drink, drink, gulp! (2x) (Raise right hand and act as if drinking and gulping.) Down it goes (2x) (Move hand from chin to tummy.) Deep into my body (Put both hands on tummy.) The water flows within me (Move hands in wave motion.) To quench my thirst. (2x) (Right hand pinched fingers move away from mouth.)
Are you thirsty? (2x) (Point out with pointer finger.) To know God? (2x) (Point up with pointer finger.) God will fill you (Put both hands on your heart.) You'll thirst no more (Use right hand to "pour.") With his Holy Spirit (2x) (Shake your head "no.")
Say: Let's sing it again and this time you try to sing along with me as we do the actions together.
Sharing Time (20-30 Min.)
Play-Doh[R], 1/2 sheet construction paper squares, 2 craft sticks/child, Jesus figure and woman figure/child, crayons, glue
Small children may need to have the figures cut out for them before class time.
Make a well. Show the children how to roll the Play-Doh[R] into a ball. Use the fingers to push out a hole in the center. Use the hands to form the sides of the well. Place the well on a 1/2 sheet of paper. Print the child's name on the paper.
Make stick puppets. Give each child 2 craft sticks and a figure of Jesus and a figure of the Samaritan woman. Ask the children to color the figures. When they are finished, help them glue each figure to a craft stick.
Tell the story. While children are finishing their craft, let those who have already finished use their puppets in retelling the Bible story to each other.
Tell the children not to begin eating until everyone has been served and you pray together. Ask a child to pray. If your children are young, ask them to repeat a phrase at a time as you pray. When the snack is finished, ask the older children to wipe their table area with their napkin and throw away their own leftover items. For younger children bring the wastebasket to each one at their seat so they can help clean up.
Supplies: activity pages, crayons
Give each child an activity page. Hold a page up for them to see as you speak to the group of children.
Say: Boys and girls, please put a finger on the words at the top of the paper. This is our Bible memory verse. Who remembers what it says? That's right! John 7:37. "... Jesus ... said ... 'Let anyone who is thirsty come to me and drink.'"
Put your finger on "Jacob's well." What is in the well? (water)
Put your finger on "Jesus." What kind of water did Jesus offer? (living water)
Put your finger on "the Samaritan woman." Who can tell me why she came to the well? (to get water)
What did she receive from Jesus? (living water which is eternal life)
Put your finger on the letters at the bottom of your paper. Put your finger on the first letter. It is a "w". Use a crayon to trace over the "w". Put your finger on the second letter. It is an "e". Use a crayon to trace over the "e". Place your finger on the third letter. It is an "l". Use a crayon to trace over the "l".
Place your finger on the fourth and final letter of the word. It is also an "l" Use a crayon to trace over the "l". You have now spelled the word "well"! You may now color the picture.
Say "Good-Bye" Time (5 Min.)
At the end of your classroom time, gather your children around you and close your time together. Let them know how happy you are each one came. Recount some of the special things they did today. Remind them of how special they are to Jesus and how much he loves them.
God Is So Good
Thank you, God, for all we learned today about Your love for us. Help each of us to remember that we can come to You anytime and ask You for a drink of "living water." We do want to know You. In Jesus' name, we pray. Amen.
raisins, grapes, banana slices, dehydrated banana chips, water, paper cups, napkins
Pass out on each child's napkin a small amount of each item. Give each child a small cup of water.
Say: Let's see everyone point to their raisins? Now point to the grapes. Did you know raisins are grapes without water? Raisins are "dehydrated" grapes. Say "de-hy-drated". (repeat) That's a big word! Dehydrated means they are dried. When the water is removed they wrinkle up. How do they feel? (hard) Feel your grapes. They feel squishy. They have water inside them. Everyone point to your banana slices. Now point to a banana chip. Feel each one. Which one is dehydrated? (banana chip)
How did you know it was dehydrated? (It was hard.)
What is the big word that means something is without water? (dehydrated)
That's right! Good for you! Let's eat!
Which One Would YOU Drink?
1 small clear plastic tub with clean water, 1 small clear plastic tub with dirty water, small paper cups, 1 ladle
Say: Look at the water in the tubs. If you were thirsty, which one would you like to drink from? Why this one? (It's clean.)
Why not that one? (It looks dirty.)
Are you thirsty? Would you like a drink? (Give children a drink of water.)
Say: When you are thirsty you know your body needs a drink of good clean water to quench your thirst. Did you know there is a different kind of water and a different kind of thirst? Today our Bible story will teach us about being "thirsty" to know God and about the special kind of water God will give us to quench our thirst.
HEY! It's Dry and Parched Here!
plastic container of hard, cracked soil, small pitcher of water
Let the children "poke" the soil.
Say: How does it feel? (hard) Let one child pour a small amount of water on the soil.
Say: Watch the water. Can you see it? (no) Where did it go? (down into the soil) Let the children "poke" the soil again.
Say: How does it feel? (still hard) Let another child pour a little more water on the soil.
Say: Watch the water. Can you see it now? (no) Where did it go? (deep down into the soil) Let the children "poke" the soil.
Say: How does it feel? (softer) Let another child pour a good amount of water on the soil.
Say: Watch the water. Can you see it now? (no) Where is it going? (deep, deep down into the soil) Let the children "poke" the soil.
Say: How does it feel now? (soft)
Excerpted from Splash! by Max Lucado Copyright © 2004 by Max Lucado. Excerpted by permission.
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