Sure, your Jesse Tree tradition is beautiful. You’ve picked out a tree, found readings you love, and have adorable ornaments. But is it truly a smash hit?
I want to leave this Advent season with a few things; a deeper love for Jesus and a great understand and appreciation for the stories in the Bible.
But some stories can’t just be told with a book and an adorable printable. I was thinking about the split in the kingdom, when the kingdom of Israel splits into two because the people turned away from God.
Once that happened, it could not be fixed. The kingdom was destroyed until Jesus came. Jesus came and preached to the Jews and the Gentiles. Jesus came to bring all people back to God.
Kids love when things are visual and interactive. For example, you can make a crown. You can make it out of clay too, but I’m planning paper mache yes, filled with candy. Once you have your crown, you can make it beautiful by painting or coloring it.
Then you’ll explain to the kids how Jesus loved the Kingdom of Israel and it was beautiful. However, every time the people sinned and turned against God, they broke their covenant with Him and destroyed the Kingdom God had given them.
Now is the fun part where you let the kids smash the crown you’ve made. If it’s a pinata, there’ll be some scrabbling for candy too.
Once the crown is broken, have the kids try to put the crown back together. It will be impossible!
After the Kingdom of Israel split, the only one who could bring it back together was Jesus. This would be a great activity for Day 18 on your Jesse Tree. Your readings are about Jeroboam and Rehoboam, the two kings who split Solomon’s kingdom.
Every day of the Jesse Tree can’t be a big party. But choosing a few special activities for certain days really brings home the point in an extra special way.