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Power That You Can’t See: Breath and Wind . . . and Spirit

by The Revd Oliver Harrison

Suitable for Key Stage 1


To explore the concept of God’s invisible power. 

Preparation and materials

You will need some drinking straws, ping pong balls and a table or bench (the last item is optional).


1. Talk about the qualities of the wind – how it’s invisible, but powerful and, although we can’t see it, we can feel it. Go on to say how that’s a bit like a description of God.

2. Ask the children to blow on their hands and think about how it feels. It feels cold!

Then ask the children to breathe on their hands – it feels warm!

3. Talk about the good things the wind can do, including flying kites and generating electricity.

Talk about the power of the wind – how, even though we can’t see it, it can knock down trees and buildings sometimes.

4. Show one of the ping pong balls and explain that it is very light, demonstrating just how light it is. You could do this by passing it to a few children to confirm this.

Then show one of the straws.

5. Ask for a volunteer to come up. Ask the volunteer to try and steer one of the ping pong balls between some obstacles on the floor or, if using, on the table or bench with only his or her breath. The volunteer can blow through a straw, but it mustn’t touch the ball.

Time for reflection

Explain that Christians believe God can guide us through life by the invisible power of his Spirit, which is often visualized as the breath of God.

Christians also believe that God’s Spirit often speaks to us through our conscience – the little voice in our head that helps us to know when we are doing something wrong or something right.

Let’s spend a few moments now in quiet, listening for that voice to help us think about the day so far. Have we done the right things?


‘Spirit of God, as strong as the wind’ (Come and Praise, 63)

Publication date: June 2015   (Vol.17 No.6)    Published by SPCK, London, UK.
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