Kids, the Bible, and Ben Franklin

Kids, the Bible, and Ben Franklin - Parenting Like HannahHave you ever heard someone “quote” the Bible and realized they were actually quoting Benjamin Franklin or some other more modern person? Evidently, it happens often. Even adults often have trouble distinguishing between a “proverb” from Benjamin Franklin or even an actor or politician and an actual “Proverb” from the book in the Bible.

Those who believe in the concept of “all wisdom is equal” would say there isn’t a problem with that. Since they are all proverbs, they should agree. The problem is that often popular proverbs are in direct conflict with scripture.  Even those which aren’t, can be misused to confuse someone about how they should and should not make decisions.

We found a fun way to help our children begin to discern between man’s wisdom (which isn’t always so wise) and God’s Wisdom (which is always the way we should go).  We broke the children up into teams with each team being sent in different directions. (All of the teams eventually covered the exact same clues.)

The clues gave a basic scenario and then the kids were faced with two options. Before they could make a choice though, someone in the scenario gave them some advice by using a “proverb” or a “Proverb” as the rationale for their advice. The kids were sent in one direction if they made one choice and another direction if they made the other choice.

If the team chose incorrectly, they were greeted with an envelope explaining what the Bible says and why the “proverb” was wrong. They then had to do something silly before going to where they should have chosen originally. Once at the correct location, the team would find an envelope with the next clue.

It was interesting because we made it a race to increase the urgency of the chase. All of the teams got the same “prize” (a Christian magnet for them to make for their kitchen). Normally you would expect to hear complaints from the “winners” but everyone was so busy talking about the experience they didn’t even register everyone got the same thing.

I really encourage you to have occasional “treasure hunt” races to re-inforce the need for everyone to really know what is in the Bible. The first time you play, you will encounter a lot of confusion. It is amazing how many kids and adults have never been on a treasure hunt. Once they get the hang of it though, they are on fire.

Ironically, all of our teams today missed the same question. My husband went inside the building and heard an adult making the same mistake! (I had just told the kids if they went inside the building and asked the adults the same question, most of them would miss it, too!)

Have you ever used Bible treasure hunts to encourage your kids to read their Bibles? How long did you make it? Did you throw in other challenges along the way?  I would love to create a master course one day and make it last for an entire class period. Please share your ideas in a comment below. If I create it, I will be sure and share it as an additional resource in the future!

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Thereasa Winnett

Thereasa Winnett is the founder of Teach One Reach One and blogger at Parenting Like Hannah. She holds a BA in education from the College of William and Mary. She has served in all areas of ministry to children and teens for more than thirty years and regularly leads workshops for ministries and churches. She has conducted numerous workshops, including sessions at Points of Light’s National Conference on Volunteering and Service, the National Urban Ministry Conference, Pepperdine Bible Lectures, and Lipscomb’s Summer Celebration. Thereasa lives in Atlanta, GA with her husband Greg, where she enjoys reading, knitting, traveling and cooking.

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