Bible passage: Exodus 3

Key verse: “!” Moses throughout…

Alternatively: “I have seen how my people are suffering as slaves in Egypt, and I have heard them beg for my help because of the way they are being ill-treated. I feel sorry for them, and I have come down to rescue them from the Egyptians” Exodus 3:7-8.

Preparation: Prepare a wide selection of food (spicy, sweet, bland, salty etc) and put them into lots of bowls. Make labels with ingredients and allergy information. Gather enough plain paper and felt-tip pens for your congregation. Build your campfire outside or find a looped video of a fire burning online. Collect enough paper plates for everyone to have six each. Set out long sheets of lining paper, plates of paint, hot soapy water and towels.

Prayer and worship activity

Option 1

10 minutes

Display the following verse on the screen: “Taste and see that the Lord is good, blessed is the one who trusts in him” Psalm 34:8.

Spread your selection of food (spicy, sweet, bland, salty etc) around the room. Invite people to take the ‘taste test’ and see which foods they would enjoy. Encourage them to be brave and try something new and not settle for foods they already like. Give out wooden spoons and encourage people to decorate them with felt-tip pens, writing the verse on it as well. While decorating, thank God for his goodness and his faithfulness. Pray for courage to keep ‘tasting’ of his goodness and not simply settle for what we already know.

Option 2

10 minutes

Give everyone sheets of plain paper and felt-tip pens. Invite them to draw or write prayers of thanks on the paper and then fold the paper into aeroplanes. They can do as many as they like! When everyone has finished, stand in a long line and after the count of three, throw the paper aeroplanes and shout: “Thank you!”


10 minutes

This story can be done in different ways, depending on your location. If you have access to outside, build a safe campfire and invite people to sit around the fire as you tell the story. If you are located inside, play a video on a large screen of a continual fire blazing and move the chairs so that you are in a ‘campfire’ circle. In both locations, give out marshmallows to all! Give everyone six paper plates. Explain what an emoji is to those who aren’t sure and then, as you tell the story, explain that you will stop at certain points and ask everyone to draw an emoji on their paper plates. Once everyone is ready, tell this story.

Moses, a Hebrew who escaped living in Egypt after committing murder, had made a new life for himself far away. He got married and helped his father in law, Jethro, by looking after his sheep. But in the back of his mind, Moses knew that his people, the Israelites and his family, were still living in slavery and being treated in very cruel ways back in Egypt. Emoji one: How would you feel if you were Moses? Guilty? Relieved? Afraid of being caught? Draw this on your paper plate.

One day while Moses was shepherding Jethro’s sheep, he took them to Mount Sinai, also known as the mountain of God. He smelt fire, so he looked up and saw a bush. It was on fire! Going over to investigate, he realised that this bush, although on fire, wasn’t actually burning up! He jumped back as he heard a voice: “Don’t come any closer! Take off your shoes because you are standing on holy ground. I am the God of your family and your ancestors. I’m the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.” Moses was very scared. He covered up his face. Emoji two: What would you do in Moses’ position? What would you be thinking?

God spoke again: “I can see the way my people are suffering in Egypt. I can hear their cries and feel their pain. I’m going to bring them out of Egypt. I’ve got a new place for them to live. It’s got great land for growing food. So, I’m sending you back. Go to Pharaoh, the king of Egypt, and bring my people, the Israelites, out!”

“I can’t do that!” Moses replied. “I’m not a great man! Why have you picked me?” God promised to be with him. Emoji three: How was Moses feeling right now?

Reflective response to the story

Option 1

10 minutes

Play some quiet music. Divide into smaller, mixed-age groups and share the emojis you have drawn on your plates, explaining the thoughts and feelings that went with them. Take another paper plate and write on one side of it something that God is asking you to do right now. On the other side, draw your own response to this. Pray quietly and ask God for courage to say yes. If appropriate, share with someone else and pray for each other.

Option 2

10 minutes

God asked Moses to take off his shoes because the ground he was standing on was holy. Many years later, after Moses had died and his successor, Joshua, was about to take the Israelites into the land God had promised them, God told him: “Every place where you set your foot will be yours” (Deuteronomy 11:24).

Today, as Christians, we take God’s kingdom into every place we go. We are sent, like Moses and Joshua. Roll out some lining paper across the floor and provide trays of coloured paint. You will also need hot soapy water and towels. Invite people to take off their shoes, stand in a tray of paint and walk across the lining paper, cleaning their feet off at the end.

When this has been done, give out pens and ask everyone to write next to the footprints where God sends them - this could be school, a club, work, neighbours or friends. Reflect on the fact that we are sent by God for a purpose.

Group discussion questions

5 minutes

Divide into smaller, mixed-age groups. Discuss the following questions. Younger children can use coloured tissue paper and sticks to create a fire collage but ensure they are still included in the discussion.

  • What is your favourite part of the story?
  • Why do you think Moses was so insistent that he shouldn’t be the person to go?
  • Moses made lots of excuses. What kinds of excuses do we make when God is asking us to do something?
  • Is there any part of this story that is like your life?