Role Models

The question for the child is not ‘Do I want to be good?’ but ‘Whom do I want to be like?’

– Bruno Bettelheim, Austrian child psychologist, author (1903-1990)

Objective:

The objective of this session is to encourage children to have positive role models, and that Jesus Christ is our ultimate hero and role model.

Preparation:

For this session, you will need:

  • comic books (five to ten)
  • paper (one piece for each participant)
  • markers/crayons/colored pencils
  • summaries of different events from the life of Christ (later in the session, each group will be illustrating a different event in Christ's life)

Some suggested events:

  • The Nativity: Jesus Christ's birth (Luke 2:1-20)
  • Theophany: Jesus' baptism (Matthew 3:13-17)
  • Miracle at Cana: Jesus turns water into wine (John 2:1-11)
  • Jesus being tempted in the desert (Matthew 4:1-17)
  • Jesus healing the paralytic (Matthew 9:1-8)
  • Jesus feeding the 5,000 (John 6:1-14)
  • Jesus being betrayed and crucified (Matthew 26 & 27)
  • The Resurrection (Matthew 28:1-10)

Opening Prayer:

In the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit. Amen.

Glory to You, our God glory to You!

Our Father who art in heaven, hallowed be Thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread; and forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us; and lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. Amen.

Ice Breaker: 

Divide the participants into smaller groups. Each group should have no more than eight and no less than four. Instruct each group to make up a short skit where they will have a scary/bad scenario and a super hero. Give them five or ten minutes to come up with one, then have each group perform their skit for the other groups. If possible, have one staff member per group so that the groups have some guidance and help. 

Discussion: 

Go around the circle and have each participant share their answers. If they are shy to speak, start by sharing your own stories. 

  • Who is your favorite super hero? Why?
  • What does a super hero do? What makes them so important and special? (save people, protect us, etc)
  • Do we try to be like our favorite super heroes?
  • Is it easy?

State: 

In your own words

I know of a really great super hero, and that is Jesus Christ. Christ was our ultimate savior because he died for us. We've been discussing super heroes, and we've seen that many of us are inspired by super heroes, and sometimes even try to be like them. So, if these superheroes are our “role models,” shouldn’t we try hardest to be like Jesus Christ? 

What are some reasons Jesus is our ultimate superhero?

  • He created the whole world! o He knows everything and everyone. 
  • He is beyond laws and limits - performing miracles is the normal way of life for Him.
  • He is eternal - without beginning and without end (the Alpha and the Omega - Rev 22:13). 
  • Because He loves us so much, He came down to our level, even though He is a "superhero," and even let Himself be killed. No ordinary superhero does that! 

What are some reasons we should try to be like Jesus Christ? 

  • He loves us!
  • We are His children, made in His image and likeness.
  • Jesus tells us that if we follow Him and believe in Him, we will have eternal life (John 11:25-26).
  • Jesus said, "I you love Me, keep My commandments" (John 14:15).
  • Following Jesus makes gives us joy and true happiness. 

Activity/Bridge:

Comic Book Story 

Pass around some pictures of comic books or comic strips as examples. Have the participants get into the same skit groups as before. Pass out a summary of a different Bible story to each group (see above for suggestions). Have the staff member read the story, and break it up into parts. Instruct each camper to draw a picture, or a comic, of their portion of the story. Explain that once all of the groups' drawings are together, it will make a comic strip and tell a story! Have the groups put their “comic strips” together, telling a story from the bible. Ask them to share/teach the rest of the group the story of their comic strip. Reiterate that these stories are all explaining the miracles the Christ does, and this is better than any fictional super hero or comic strip. Jesus Christ should be our ultimate role model. 

Wrap up & Challenge:

State in your own words

Today we have talked about superheroes, and how they often are examples for us in how we live. Jesus Christ is our ultimate hero and role model for the reasons we talked about (reiterate above reasons). Today, I challenge you to look up to Jesus Christ just as you would look up to your favorite superhero. Let's try our best to be like Christ in our lives - following His example. After all, He is the most powerful and wise of everyone and everything in the world, but He humbled Himself out of love for us! This is our ultimate example of superhero behavior. 

Closing Prayer: 

In the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit. Amen. 

Glory to You, our God glory to You! 

Our Father who art in heaven, hallowed be Thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread; and forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us; and lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. Amen.