by Alan M. Barker
Suitable for Key Stage 2
To recall the importance of good advice.
Preparation and materials
- Familiarize yourself with the story from Matthew 4.1–11 in the ‘Assembly’, Step 3, so that you can add some drama and read it in a flowing and imaginative way.
- Observe that anyone who has played in a football or netball team or, perhaps, has taken a dance or music examination, will know the importance of good advice. Invite responses to this and, in conversation with the children, establish the nature of the advice given to them in such circumstances.
- Reflect that good advice:
– helps us to achieve our best
– can prevent us from making mistakes
– supports us in reaching our goals.
Explain that, during Lent – a period of prayer and reflection before Easter – Christians focus on their goals and remember the importance of good advice.
- A story is told about a testing time faced by Jesus. He found it helped him to remember sayings and good advice. Tell the following simple adaptation of Matthew 4.1–11 in an imaginative way with a sense of drama. Convey how Jesus was alone in the wilderness. He thought, he prayed, he fasted (ate very little) because he wanted to think about the needs of others.
The temptation of Jesus
Jesus was alone. He became very hungry, so hungry that he wanted to tell the stones to turn into loaves of bread, but then he remembered a saying: ‘Don’t just give orders. Take time to listen!’
Jesus stayed alone, listening in the wilderness. No one was around. He imagined standing high on a temple. ‘Lots of people would look up to me’, thought Jesus. ‘They’d see how important I am. I might even fly!’ Then, other advice came into his mind: ‘Don’t show off! Show respect.’
Still all alone, Jesus wondered what it would be like to rule the whole world. Just imagine that! Anyone who ruled the world could go anywhere they wished and have anything they wanted! Jesus quickly pushed that thought away. He remembered yet more good advice: ‘Don’t just help yourself! Help others.’
Jesus was alone, but now he felt ready to begin his work.
- Invite the children to recall the advice contained within the story. Successful people:
– take time to listen – don’t just give orders
- show respect – don’t show off
– help others – don’t just think of themselves.
What other advice might be remembered as everyone prepares to begin or return to work?
- Conclude with the thought that, acting on positive advice, the school community will achieve its best.
Time for reflection
Ask everyone to quietly consider one piece of helpful advice that they have heard. Invite them to remember and act on it.
Whatever tests and challenges we face, help us to remember good advice and be guided by it.
‘Go, tell it on the mountain’ (Come and Praise, 24)