Christmas is always a time of great excitement in the classroom. It is, in fact, hard to keep the minds of students on their lessons during the last two weeks leading up to the Christmas break. Of course, part of this excitement is simply because they will have a break from school; but the other part is the excitement of the Christmas celebrations. I learned early on in my teaching career that it is best to not even try to teach anything vital during this time!
The students still need to learn, however. Isn’t it for that reason they are at school? So during the last few days leading up to the Christmas break, I always tried to plan fun learning activities. One year, I asked each of my students to bring in small pieces of material out of their recycling boxes: paper rolls, milk cartons, etc. The objective was to encourage the students to use their creativity to build a Christmas village out of garbage that was destined for the recycling plant.
The students loved this activity. They brought in so much recycling that we would have had enough to build an entire city! I brought in cotton batting to create snow, as well as colored paper and other supplies, and the students set to work. In the end, they had a beautiful village, all made from material found in the recycling bin.
There was one thing missing in their village however. I had anticipated that this might happen. In fact, I had hoped it would happen, because it would be an open door for me to talk about Jesus; and after congratulating them on the excellent work they had done, I popped the question: “Where is the church?”
The student set to work pulling out more cans, cartons and boxes, and before long, a church was the prominent figure in our little village. Meanwhile, by making some pointed comments, students began asking questions about Jesus, and it wasn’t long before I was able to share with them: “She will give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins.” (Matthew 1:21 NIV).
Did this simple exercise make a kingdom difference?
I can’t say for sure what the long-term effects were, but I can tell you that the students talked about this fun Christmas activity for months to come. Because a tiny seed of Truth was hidden deep within that same activity, I can only pray that one day God will bring this seed of Truth into fruition.
We may never know when something we do or say makes a kingdom difference in someone’s life. Remember the parable of the sower (See Matthew 13)? The sower went out and cast out seed. Not all of it landed on fertile soil, but that didn’t really seem to bother the sower, did it? That’s because his responsibility was simply to sow seed! Even in situations where we are not allowed to talk about God openly, there are ways to sow seed. Our job is to be open to God’s Spirit as He guides us to the place where spiritual seed can be sown.
Where is God directing you to sow spiritual seed this Christmas?
In His love,
(To access the entire “Christmas With Students” devotional series, please click here.)