There Your Heart Will Be

Depths of Love

Ash Wednesday, Year B

Ash Wednesday is about refocusing and realigning ourselves in relationship to God and one another. We must encounter our sinfulness and frailty not with shame and blame but with honesty and truth, trusting that God receives our confession.

Note to the Teacher

The key idea in this scripture for this lesson is “store your treasure in heaven.” The icebreaker invites youth to “guard/steal treasure” with one another. The discussion encourages students to think about the kinds of treasure they hold close. The activity allows youth to gather treasure and provides an opportunity to give others words to treasure. Times are based on a fifty-five-minute lesson period but may be adjusted.

Treasure Guard (15 minutes)

Pick a person to be “it.” Have the person who is “it” stand in the middle of the room with a “treasure” at their feet. We recommend something noisy like a set of keys. When you say go, have those who are not “it” try to grab the treasure while the person who is “it” tries to touch their hands. If a hand is touched, the thief loses the use of that hand and must place it behind their back. Game play continues. If someone who has lost a hand has had the remaining hand touched, that person becomes a “guard” for the treasure and assists the person who is “it.” If a thief manages to get the treasure, that person is “it” for the next round.

Option 1:

To make the game a bit harder, blindfold the person who is “it” and have that individual sit in a chair with the treasure under the chair.

Option 2:

If playing with a large group, break them into smaller groups OR put several treasures under the chair to be stolen.

Read Scripture (5 minutes)

Our scripture reading today suggests how we should “store our treasures.”

Read Matthew 6:1-6, 16-21.

Discussion (15 minutes)

  • In what ways does doing an act of good privately (or alone) feel different from an act of good done in public (with others present)?
  • What kind of problems might be caused when we seek people's approval while doing something kind for someone?
  • What are some ways you can be generous without seeking praise?
  • What can be learned from Jesus going away by himself to pray?
  • What are some treasures in your life that you hold too close and need to let go?
  • What are some ways you can deepen your private prayer life?

Activity and Discussion (20 minutes)

Fill a kiddie pool with soapy water and marbles. Giving students one minute, invite them to grab as many marbles as they can with their toes. Allow them to exchange their marbles for candy or small trinkets once they’re done. * If doing this activity indoors, consider playing over a tarp and providing towels for drying feet.

Points for discussion:

  1. In meeting the needs of the hungry, marginalized, and different, we have a unique opportunity to share things we treasure with others.
  2. What are ways that you might work with others to meet a need in your community?
  3. Are there “treasures” that our church has that we should be sharing?
  4. Work on an action plan together to meet a need and brainstorm possibilities. (A favorite of our teens is to write kind words on sticky notes and place them around the church as encouragement for others.)

TOTAL TIME: 55 minutes


  • A set of noisy keys
  • Kiddie pool
  • Marbles
  • Soap
  • Water


  • Post-it notes
  • Pens

In This Series...

Ash Wednesday, Year B - Lectionary Planning Notes First Sunday in Lent, Year B - Lectionary Planning Notes Second Sunday in Lent, Year B - Lectionary Planning Notes Third Sunday in Lent, Year B - Lectionary Planning Notes Fourth Sunday in Lent, Year B - Lectionary Planning Notes Fifth Sunday in Lent, Year B - Lectionary Planning Notes Palm / Passion Sunday, Year B - Lectionary Planning Notes Maundy Thursday, Year B - Lectionary Planning Notes Good Friday, Year B - Lectionary Planning Notes