Use this free children’s sermon and Bible object to explain why chasing riches will always disappoint. God’s Word says contentment is the better way to live free from the love of money. Use this teaching material as a standalone lesson in your Sunday School or Kids Church. If you need more, don’t miss the 18-page Sunday School lesson based on 1 Timothy 6.
Contentment, not Cash! Children’s Message on Real Riches
Lesson Objective: There are a lot of things that compete for attention these days. Surrounded by messages of media and culture, children often see the idea that more “stuff” will satisfy them. It’s important to impart from an early age that our contentment comes from Christ, rather than worldly wealth. This message uses an object lesson incorporating bubbles and cotton candy to communicate the fleeting nature of riches. Use it to explain the beauty of seeking Godly contentment with what we have, rather than striving after temporary things.
Law/Gospel Theme: As humans, we might try to seek contentment in a lot of things: fame, fortune, food…but the only thing that truly satisfies is Jesus Christ. We can be content knowing that God has and will provide us with all that we need. When we trust in the promises of the Lord, we can pursue the things that bring genuine joy.
Optional Materials: (Optional) Bubbles, cotton candy, examples of riches (toys, money, etc.)
Bible Passage: 1 Timothy 6:6-19
Message: Note: As with most messages, the details of how you choose to communicate this are adaptable and should cater to timing as well as to your audience and student needs.
Object Lesson Children’s Sermon on the Love of Money
Greet children and consider the temporal nature of a couple common objects:
Hello, Children of God! Today I want you to do something for me…I am going to give you something that I’d like you to catch! Are you ready? Here goes… Begin blowing bubbles toward students. Likely, the bubbles will pop soon after they are caught. It’s kind of hard to hold onto those, isn’t it? The minute you try to catch them or keep them, they just pop! That’s sort of frustrating. You know what it kind of reminds me of? Cotton candy (hold up a bag, if you have one). I always get excited about eating this stuff, but it can be a little disappointing. The minute I put a big blob of it on my tongue, poof! It just disappears! It tastes delicious for a moment, but it’s gone so soon. It doesn’t really satisfy my hunger or provide nutritional value.
Come to think of it, there are a lot of things in life that don’t quite satisfy us like we think they should. Sometimes we think that we can find joy in certain things, and we wind up disappointed. We see people looking for happiness in things like fortune, job success, money (hold up money), new things (hold up toys or fun items), or maybe fun treats (hold up candy). But the more we try to use these things to feel contentment, the more we realize it doesn’t work. None of those things last. In the end, we can’t hang onto them, and they pop like those bubbles or disappear like cotton candy.
So where do we turn for hope? What can provide lasting joy and peace? The Bible reminds us that we are to pursue different priorities than what the world might give us. “Godliness with contentment is great gain”, the apostle Paul tells Timothy. That means that we can seek God’s values and be content with what we have. God provides what we need. The Bible warns us that the love of money is the root of evil. That doesn’t mean money is evil. We need money to do things. But we don’t want it to be the focus of our attention. Greed always wants more, and earthly riches don’t truly stick around. We know that the Lord gives us daily bread and takes care of us. Even more importantly, God has given us salvation through the blood of Jesus. That means more than any other thing we could try to buy or have. We might want certain luxuries, but we don’t need them. We need God’s love, and we have it guaranteed. The next time you find yourself longing for a “cotton candy” type of desire, remember all of the blessings that you already have. Give thanks and consider how you can love and serve God and His people.
Let’s say a prayer and thank God for granting us what we need for life.
(Have kids repeat each line)
Thank you for giving us what we truly need
Help us to be content with what we have
And pursue what matters most
Thank you for your love
We love you, God!
In Jesus name, Amen!
Bible Verses/story to Reference:
But godliness with contentment is great gain, 7 for we brought nothing into the world, and we cannot take anything out of the world. 8 But if we have food and clothing, with these we will be content. 9 But those who desire to be rich fall into temptation, into a snare, into many senseless and harmful desires that plunge people into ruin and destruction. 10 For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evils. It is through this craving that some have wandered away from the faith and pierced themselves with many pangs. 11 But as for you, O man of God, flee these things. Pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, steadfastness, gentleness. 12 Fight the good fight of the faith. Take hold of the eternal life to which you were called and about which you made the good confession in the presence of many witnesses. 13 I charge you in the presence of God, who gives life to all things, and of Christ Jesus, who in his testimony before Pontius Pilate made the good confession, 14 to keep the commandment unstained and free from reproach until the appearing of our Lord Jesus Christ, 15 which he will display at the proper time—he who is the blessed and only Sovereign, the King of kings and Lord of lords, 16 who alone has immortality, who dwells in unapproachable light, whom no one has ever seen or can see. To him be honor and eternal dominion. Amen
17 As for the rich in this present age, charge them not to be haughty, nor to set their hopes on the uncertainty of riches, but on God, who richly provides us with everything to enjoy. 18 They are to do good, to be rich in good works, to be generous and ready to share, 19 thus storing up treasure for themselves as a good foundation for the future, so that they may take hold of that which is truly life. -1 Timothy 6:6-19