Note to the Teacher
The key phrase in this scripture (for this lesson) is “Get Up!” The ice breaker is fun and warms students up to the idea of being known by others. The discussion asks students to think about what it would be like for them to have been present for the miracle that happens in the scripture and gets them to consider the importance of Christ-centered community. The activity allows students to further explore the idea of their connections to others in the body of Christ. Times are based on a fifty-minute lesson period but may be adjusted.
1. Ice Breaker: Fortune Teller (10 minutes)
Select a trusted adult who is unfamiliar to your students to help you with this activity. Announce that your adult guest has supernatural powers. He or she can tell strangers about their pasts and predict their futures. Give the adult a wig that can conceal an earbud/earpiece so that you or someone else who knows the students well can feed him or her information from the back as he/she walks around the room. After you have had some fun with this, clue the audience in. This activity works well online, as long as the person feeding answers to the guest can communicate with private messages.
2. Read Scripture (5 minutes)
Our scripture reading today happens after Tabitha, also known as Dorcas, a beloved and trusted member of the church in Joppa, dies. This is in the book of Acts after Jesus has ascended and the apostles are working to grow the church.
Read Acts 9:36-43.
3. Discussion (15 minutes)
Try to picture the scene that we just read about. We hear that a disciple named Tabitha (Dorcas) dies.
- What do you think everyone in the community thought about Tabitha? Why do you think they felt this way?
- What would have been your reaction if you were there and had seen Tabitha die?
- How would you have reacted if you had been there when Tabitha came back to life?
- What would Tabitha’s resuscitation have meant to the community of believers?
Read Matthew 18:20.
- What do you think Jesus means in this statement?
- What difference does it make to you, as a believer, that Jesus is present with you when you are at church or with other Christians?
- Think about the threads that tie you together with people in your community. What are those things? Which of those is the most important? Is Jesus one of those threads with some people in your life?
4. Activity and Discussion (20 minutes)
Before students arrive for your time together, visit the Wikihow webpage on “The Human Knot” game and learn how to play. The link can be found here. If playing online, look for brief videos that demonstrate how to knit, weave, or crochet fabrics out of individual threads. Choose one interesting for your group, watch together, and then invite people to share stories of what they have learned. As a bonus, if anyone in your group know how to weave or crochet, invite them to demonstrate and share how they learned.
After playing a few different rounds or perhaps with a new variation or two, have the students consider what it was like to be physically connected to one another.
- How hard was it to become untangled when you couldn’t let go of one another’s hands?
- Do you see why our connections, or “threads,” to others are so important?
- What connections do we make that strengthen us and join us together into something larger than ourselves?
- How is Jesus the center of our community?
- How might our community help each of us “get up” when we feel lifeless?
- What would our community miss without each of you?
The ties we have in a community can make or break us in the choices we make as well as the way we follow Jesus together.
Total Time: 50 minutes
- Internet access