This summer we’re excited to present a new series on the parables of Jesus! Jesus knew that we all learn through and connect to stories – kids and grown-ups alike! Sign up to be notified by email when a new post goes up so you won’t miss any of these great lessons.
The Wise and Foolish Builders
24 “Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock. 25 The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock. 26 But everyone who hears these words of mine and does not put them into practice is like a foolish man who built his house on sand. 27 The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell with a great crash.” Matthew 7:24-27
One of the things I like about the parable of the wise and foolish builders is that there’s really no debate about the meaning of the parable. Jesus says it really clearly. A wise person is one who hears the words of Jesus and puts them in to practice. By contrast, a foolish person is one who hears the words of the Lord and does not obey them. For younger kids, parables are interesting stories but then can be confusing because small children are such concrete thinkers. My kids are ages 6 and 8, so they are old enough to understand that different people or situations symbolize something else. Here’s what I want to make sure they understand about the parable of the wise and foolish builders:
It’s not enough to hear God’s word. I can bring my kids to Sunday School and I can read them Bible stories before they go to bed. It is my responsibility as the parent to make sure that my children have plenty of opportunities to hear God’s word. But obeying God’s word is their responsibility. Wise people obey the Bible.
The storm in the story represents the bad or scary things that will happen in our lives. Believing in Jesus doesn’t mean that we won’t have to go through hard things. In the story, the rain falls down on the wise person and the foolish person.
Sometimes obeying God seems like it’s no fun, but we need to trust that God has the best plan for our lives. God knows that if we do things are own way and do not obey his words, eventually we will fall down flat. If we are obeying the Bible and trusting in God, then the hard things in life will not cause us to despair. God’s commands are always for our benefit.
Now no one likes a lecture, so here are so fun ways to bring this parable to life for your kids.
Build two houses out of blocks. Build one on a brick, and one on a sand “mountain” made from a bucket. Pour water from a pitcher on to the two houses and see what happens!
Sing a song about the story! Don’t know a song? How about this one?
Watch a movie of the story! I like this wordless story with an African motif, but I know my boys will really like the lego version.
Danielle’s Place recommends painting a rock as a visual reminder to keep on hand.
I hope we’ve been able to inspire you to be intentional as you teach your children about God’s word this summer! After all, the Bible says that’s my job as a parent and I want to make sure I’m wise and I obey God’s word!
Want more parables? If you’re interested in the other parables we’ve already talked about, and what we’ve got planned next, here’s the list!