Do not worry

Suitable for AAW Children’s address

Visual Aids: A magic thumb/ cloth (available from most joke shops) also a bird puppet and a large flower

First of all share some worries that help everyone see that I am human too.

Mine would be about arriving at my new job, at The Church of Good Shepherd, three weeks previously:-

How will I ever remember everyone's name?

Will I make mistakes?

What if I'm late, what will happen?

What if I forget to go to something really important?

You probably have had similar worries too, when you first came to this church; or you may even have come here from a different country. All of you will remember what it was like to be worried about what kind of minister or teacher would be teaching you, and what might happen to you if you made a mistake or fell foul of someone. (topical fears;-Hallowe'en, Bonfire Night)

If so, let me tell you what I do, to get rid of my worries, as a Christian. I get out my magic cloth and my magic pen, and I write out my worries and give them to God in prayer. In the bible we are told, to give God all our worries because He cares for each one of us. ( 1 Peter 5vv7) So that's what I try to do. (push cloth into magic thumb and show both hands to reveal the missing cloth.)

In the Christian faith, Jesus tells us,

"Do not worry about your life, don't worry what to wear, don't even worry about what to eat." (repeat the exercise again as you talk) (Luke 12vv22-31)

Let me read you a little more about what Jesus said,

He said, "Look at the birds outside. (Get out the bird puppet and make a show of it being shy and not wanting to talk to the boys and girls, invite them to tell Billy their names after three…1..2..3… After they've ll shouted their names out together, then make Billy squawk to say a little hello)

Well just look at Billy the bird. He doesn't go to the shops for food, he doesn't spend any money or plant seeds in the ground…but God feeds him because He loves him.GOD LOVES YOU EVEN MORE THAN BILLY. (put Billy away carefully in a bag)

And here we have Lily (hold up a large lily). So we have a Lily as well as Billy. Can you see how beautiful she is. She didn't go to the shops for her dress, she didn't spend ages in front of the mirror putting her clothes on, she didn't even have to go to work to buy the dress, yet here she is looking even more beautiful than the queen herself.So don't worry about your life or what to wear, because GOD LOVES YOU FAR, FAR MORE THAN LILY.

LIVE GOD'S WAY AND EVERYTHING ELSE WILL FALL INTO PLACE IN YOUR LIFE."