In this object lesson, you are going to be decorating cupcakes along with the children, demonstrating that oftentimes we have to wait for the best things. You can make cupcakes from scratch or buy them without icing (or scrape the icing off) for this exercise. Hide each ingredient until you need it, and you’re kids will see that waiting on the Lord for the right time to reap can be fun and rewarding!
• Cupcakes that are not iced. (A couple fast ways to get these if you are in a rush: Ask at the bakery counter in the supermarket or use muffins such as chocolate chip.)
• Icing, pretty color
• Rainbow Sprinkles
• Smarties, Skittles or M&Ms
• Hersey bars (the kind with the rectangular pieces you can break off) or bitesized Hershey bars
• Icing knife
Keep all ingredients except the cupcakes in a satchel or tote bag under the teaching table. Put the cupcakes on the table.
Pass out the cupcakes and tell the students they can sniff them but not bite!
This month is harvest season for some farmers. In the spring, as the earth thaws after a long, cold winter, farmers plant their seeds. Before long, small green plants shoot up from the earth and buds form on fruit trees.
By summertime, the fields are knee or waist-high with greenery, and trees are forming buds and small fruit.
But it isn’t time for picking yet. If farmers picked their fruits and vegetables too soon, what would happen? The fruit would be sour and not ready.
We have to wait for good things. The Bible says quite a few things about harvest time. Jesus compared it to waiting on God for the right time to make choices and move ahead.
James 5:7 says, “Be patient, therefore, brothers, until the coming of the Lord. See how the farmer waits for the precious fruit of the earth, being patient about it, until it receives the early and the late rains.”
Sometimes God requires patience from us. Like right now! How many of you would like to eat your cupcake? But it’s not ready yet! We are still harvesting it.
Get out your icing. Ice the cupcake and pass the icing knife and icing around so each student can have a turn. While they are icing:
Can you think of a time when you were waiting and waiting for something, and you were starting to think it might never happen? Let them give examples. Triggers: Recovering from an illness, parents were building a new house, adopting a pet, earning money for something special, improving at a sport or instrument…
Don’t eat your cupcake yet, but let me ask: How many of you feel ready to eat it, now that it looks so pretty?
But wait! It’s not ready yet! When God asks us to be patient, it is often that he has something better in mind than what we could get without patience. Let’s make our cupcakes a little better.
Get out the skittles or M&Ms and create a ring around your cupcake close to the edge. Pass them and let the students do the same on theirs.
Has anyone ever tasted a very sour apple? That means it was picked too soon. What other fruits have you tasted that were not ripe yet? And what did they taste like? Triggers: sour strawberries, tiny blueberries, anemic watermelon, sour apples, sour oranges, green bananas, hard peaches. Isn’t it better to wait until the fruit is ripe?
Now, who would like to eat your cupcakes? But they’re not ready yet! Patience is a virtue!
Get out the sprinkles and sprinkle the top of your cupcake. Pass the sprinkles so everyone can shake some out on their cupcake.
You’re noticing, I hope, that the longer you have to wait for this cupcake the better it gets. What else have we had to wait for? Has anyone ever broken a bone and had to get a cast? Did anyone ever have an operation or an illness where you had to stay in bed for a long time, or you couldn’t go out and play with your friends? Raise further questions: How long did it take you to get better? What did you do with your time? What did it feel like to finally get back to school?
Do you think these cupcakes are finally ready yet? Well, don’t eat them! If you do, you will miss the final topping!
Get out the Hershey squares or bites. Unwrap them and put a Hershey square in the very center. Pass the let the kids do the same.
Sometimes it can seem like God is not doing anything on our behalf. It can seem like he isn’t watching or doesn’t care. But that is not true. God is always working. Sometimes we don’t get our prayer answered quickly because there are many people involved in what we want. If your parents are building a new house, God is looking out for the builder and his family and all the workers and their families. God has to juggle everything so that the end result works out well for all parties involved.
Sometimes God wants to test our patience to make sure we are becoming stronger people. Galatians 6:9 says, “Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.”
Be patient, keep believing that God loves you, and keep treating others the way you’d want to be treated. In the end, you will reap your blessings. Like right now…it’s time to reap a harvest of cupcakes. Finally—you can eat!
You might also be interested in these fall activity ideas!
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