Once a month, Terrence and I serve our church by leading the K-3rd Children’s Church group. Our Youth Ministry Leader, Sugar, sets us up by giving us the lesson that we’re going to teach in enough time for us to study the text that the lesson is based on, and come up with activities to engage the children. It was just a couple of years ago that I was writing curriculum for these very grade levels, so you’d think that I have a ton of ideas up my sleeve to pull out when it’s our time to teach. Well, I don’t. For some reason, my children’s church activities usually come to me on Sunday mornings about 20 minutes before we’re scheduled to walk out the door! That’s what happened with the Rock Necklace.
This week, we taught the children about Stephen who was stoned for telling the truth and standing firm in the Word of God (Acts 6:1 – 8:4). We talked about how it can be difficult for Christians in the world to uphold what we know to be true about God, and how we will face opposition from people who just don’t believe. Before we made the Rock Necklaces, we told the children that they should wear these necklaces as a reminder that God is their Rock, and that no matter what the world throws at them, they have Christ to lean on.
These necklaces are super easy to make, however they do require a few tools that you might not have on hand if you’re not a crafter. I had to run to store to get the rock beads before church, but if you’re more organized than me, you can order them ahead of time. In addition to the beads, you’ll need pliers, hemp cord, and 26 gauge wire.
Here’s how you make the necklace. First, take the wire and thread the rock bead. I purchased rocks with holes already drilled into them. Tie the wire and then wrap it around the rock bead. If you have smaller children, don’t worry about the wire being perfect. As we told our youth, we are imperfect, it’s Christ, the rock in the center that grounds us! After the rock bead is sufficiently wrapped, take the two ends and twist them together, then fashion a loop. You may have to trim off excess wire with the pliers (an adult will need to do this part!). Finally, use a piece of hemp string to turn the wrapped rock bead into a necklace.
The children were all very excited to make the necklace, and were completely engaged with the story of Stephen. We checked in with Ayva again today, and she still remembered who he was, and why she is wearing the necklace. Crafts are a great way to help young people retain the Word, and show them that learning about the Bible can be fun!