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Monday, March 3, 2008

Welcome to My Clown Show Sunday School Class

In all the years I've volunteered with Sunday School, never have I laughed as much as I did yesterday. this year, I teach a section usually involving games and related messy projects. Our church uses a rotation system, leaving me with a group of first graders this week. Creative energy hit a new high this week in our discussion of baptism.

Please, enter into my clown show Sunday School room. Our topic of discussion is the baptism of Jesus by John the Baptist. We have completed a somewhat messy, very cool disappearing message project. I have read the story of John the Baptist from the book of Matthew. We are now in a friendly discussion. During this time, I will ask some questions, children will answer.

"How would you feel if you were John when people came to be baptized?"

"Not good." This is now the fourth week kids have given me this answer.

"Not good? Why do you say that?"

"Because he ate bugs."

"I would have bad breath if I ate bugs. Some people have bad breath because they don't brush their teeth. I don't like being around people who have stinky breath."

"If I were John, I'd tell people I'd baptize them after I brushed my teeth."

"I don't think people had toothbrushes then. Maybe he ate honey to give himself good breath, and then the people wouldn't mind being around him."

Okay, time to move on.

"What was the special animal in the story?"

"I don't know."

"Oh, I know. It was a dove."

"Why was it a dove?"

Shrug the shoulders.

"Okay, why do you think God chose a dove, instead of a giraffe?" Yes, I know I walked into this one.

"Because a giraffe is really big, and it has a long neck, and long legs."

"A giraffe can't fly down and land on Jesus' shoulder. It's just way too big."

"Because a giraffes sit on toilets."

How many donuts has this kid had already? Too many, I'd guess.

"Do you know what my mom thinks doves are?"


"She thinks they're romantic."

"So why do you think God chose a dove to appear?" Let's try this question again.

"Um, because doves are white."

"And have feathers."

"Doves are small enough they can land on Jesus' shoulder."

In comes an older sister, picking up her younger brother.

"Hi, would you like to join the clown show?"

"Um," as she is looking around the room in a strange manner, "I don't think so."

That's cool. You probably don't comprehend what is going on anyway.

"What does the dove represent?"

"My dad says its love."

"How about God's peace?"

"Yeah, yeah, that's it."

All right, now we have a focused answer. This group of kids is probably the most creative I've had all month. Everybody else acts as if they'd rather sleep than come to Sunday School. Yesterday reminded me of the email sent around the world about what kids say in Sunday School. I'm not sure how much sugar these kids had before church. Whatever they did, I'd like them to keep it up. The clown show was fun.

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