How do we live our lives?
by Rebecca Parkinson (revised, originally published in 2007)
Suitable for Whole School (Pri)
To consider how Christians and others believe that the Bible is a signpost showing them a path through life.
Preparation and materials
You will need a copy of the Bible.
You will also need the road signs shown below. These may be drawn on pieces of paper or downloaded from: www.bris.ac.uk/imagelib/ts.html
Show each road sign in turn.
Ask the children what each sign means and what action it should cause a driver to take.
- The first sign means ‘No entry’.
- The second sign means ‘Stop and give way’.
- The third sign means ‘One-way traffic’.
- The fourth sign means ‘Danger’.
Show the Bible to the children.
Point out that Christians and people of other faiths believe that the Bible contains much wisdom that can help us to live a better life.
Show the ‘No entry’ sign again.
Sometimes, the Bible tells us that it is better for us not to follow certain ways of living (such as being selfish and holding on to our possessions). You may wish to draw attention to the Ten Commandments. Christians believe that this is not because God is a spoilsport, but because he loves and cares for us.
Show the ‘Stop’ sign again.
Explain that sometimes, in the Bible, there are stories and laws that tell us to stop doing something. It may be that we are hurting other people or doing something that we know is wrong. The Bible shows us that we should stop doing wrong and follow a life that is good and involves helping and caring for others.
Show the ‘One-way traffic’ sign again.
The Bible shows us a way to live that encourages us to think of others before ourselves. It asks us not to put ourselves first and make demands, but to consider other people’s ideas and preferences. We will be happier when we live like this.
Show the ‘Danger’ sign again.
Explain that Christians believe that the Bible is not there to make our lives boring or miserable, but to show us a good way to live that makes those around us happy. It shows us that there is a danger of being so caught up with ourselves that we end up making ourselves and those around us unhappy, too.
Recap that the Bible is not just a rule book for Christians to follow; it is full of examples of how we can live our lives for others. Many people find that it gives them direction and provides them with peace and comfort. Some people believe that God speaks directly to them through the Bible, and others find it a good source of interesting stories and wisdom from the earliest civilizations. It tells the stories of Jesus and his followers in the New Testament, and of the Jewish people in the Old Testament.
Time for reflection
Let’s think for a moment about the road signs that help us to be safe on the roads.
Let’s take the time to think about where we get our directions for life from.
- Do we know any stories from the Bible?
- Do they help us to think about how to live?
Thank you that you want to help us throughout our lives.
Thank you that you gave us the Bible, which encourages us to care for other people.
Please help us to think about the way our lives affect those around us.
‘The prayer of St Francis (Make me a channel of your peace)’ (Come and Praise, 147)