Resources for Christian Education

Free Workshop Rotation Model Lessons - Season 3

Children’s Sermon

Matthew 18:15-20

Communication and Jesus

September 10, 2017

Fourteenth Sunday after Pentecost

Lectionary Year A

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ASK    (a.k.a The On-Ramp)

  • Good morning!
  • [ Hold up balloon ]
  • This here is a balloon, as you can tell, but I want you to pretend that it is a person.
  • And, I want you to pretend that every breath of air that I blow into this balloon are actions or words that hurt this person’s feelings.
  • [ Blow  air into balloon – about halfway ]
  • So what do you think will happen if this person’s feelings keep getting hurt [blow another breath into the balloon], over and over again?
  • Your right – the person will go “Pop!” or “KA-BLOOIEEEE!”
  • Which means this one balloon will suddenly become many different pieces of a balloon. It might even look something like this, right? [Show  pieces from a different, popped balloon]

TELL    (a.k.a. The Freeway)

  • In today's story, Jesus is teaching his disciples how to talk with each other.
  • And, what he really wants them to understand is that if one person gets their feelings hurt by another person, then that person needs to talk to the person who hurt his or her feelings.
  • The reason Jesus is telling his disciples to talk to each other like this is because he knows what will happen if they DON'T talk to each other about these things.
  • If the disciples do NOT talk to each other about their hurt feelings, Jesus knows that the same thing that happened to this balloon when I blew too much air into it, would also happen to the disciples:
  • The disciples would stop talking to each other
  • The disciples would stop working with each other
  • The disciples would stop being friends and would go away from each other.
  • To avoid this, Jesus is teaching his disciples how to let the hurt feelings out: By telling the person who hurt their feelings about those hurt feelings, as well as also telling the other disciples (if need be).

SHARE the Good News   (a.k.a. The Destination)

  • At the end of today’s story, Jesus says that wherever two or more of his disciples are gathered, that is also where Jesus is.
  • And this is why Jesus wants his disciples to know that they can't just store up their hurt feelings until they “Pop!” and then stop being friends.
  • Because, when they pop, then they are no longer together, right? [Hold up pieces of the burst balloon] Just like this balloon is no longer together.
  • And if they are no longer gathered together, then they are no longer where Jesus is.
  • This is why Jesus is telling them to talk to each other when one of them has hurt someone else in the group, because that’s how stay gathered together.
  • Because, if they stay gathered together (which is where Jesus is), then they will be much better able to know how to receive and share God’s love, since that’s what Jesus keeps teaching and reminding them about.
  • That’s the good news for today.
  • Let's pray. This is a repeat-after-me prayer.


  • Let’s pray.  This is a repeat-after-me prayer.

Dear God,
Dear God,

Thank you for Jesus…

Thank you for Jesus…

…who teaches us about you.

…who teaches us about you.

Help us to pay attention…

Help us to pay attention…

…to him and to you.

…to him and to you.

  Thank you and amen

Posted August 18, 2014

Updated on September 4, 2017
Written and edited by Nathanael Vissia

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Supplies: One balloon to blow air into. And pieces of another balloon that you previously popped (well before the children’s message).

Related message(s): Mark 8:31-38