Fear, anxiety, and stress—you may be experiencing these emotions lately. Maybe you want to give up or become angry, but God’s goodness grants us the strength to choose courage instead. God speaks to us in Deuteronomy with the commandment to “be strong and courageous.” For Joshua, that meant leading the people of Israel to the promised land; for us, it might mean having a hard conversation or taking on a challenge.
With the spirit of courage in mind, we have gathered some fun crafts for Friendship groups to do together, inspired by our very own “Choose Courage” study. These activities are a great accompaniment to the curriculum, but they’re also great on their own!
1 Courage When Life is Tough
Fear: the invisible force that can extinguish courage. This simple science experiment using vinegar, baking soda and a lit candle, demonstrates how something unseen can put out a candle’s flame, like fear can put out our courage if we let it. Use the activity as an object lesson for Session 1 of the unit, during Step 2: Exploring God’s Word. Whether you opt to explore through Bible Study or Drama, you can incorporate this activity to show how fear could “put out” the courage of Joshua and the Israelites.
You could use this activity on its own, or as a way to remember what you learned when you went through the “Choose Courage” study. For more inspiration in how to incorporate and discuss this object lesson, see this post on Future Flying Saucers. Note that the post is organized for children and you’ll talk through it differently with your Friendship Group in a simple but adult-appropriate manner.
2 God is With You
In Session 2, one way to explore courage-building is to know that God says “I am with you.” Try this DIY craft for each group member to have as a reminder of exactly where God goes with them: create a simple picture-book of the places you go!
This could be done using digital photos to create a slideshow on your smartphone, by putting printed photos into a small photo album, with a title page saying “God says, ‘I am with you wherever you go,’” or it could be a handmade construction-paper booklet like this example from I Did It -You Do It. The instructions on I Did It-You Do It are fantastic, though it is directed at parents or teachers of very young children. Take the ideas and make them your own so that each Friend can be reminded that God is with us!
3 Learning to Listen
If your group is enjoying the Choose Courage Unit and would like further study on the concept of Learning to Listen, take a moment to explore other scriptures, such as I Samuel 3. As a supplemental activity and Bible story, your group can experience the surprise of listening to God with this activity based on Samuel’s experience described in I Samuel 3.
Use this PDF from “Bible Crafts & Activities” to create a movable figure, and watch Samuel’s eyes open and close as he hears the voice of God wake him from sleep. It brings to life the words Samuel spoke, which we too can say: “Speak, Lord, for your servant is listening”!
4 Into the Water
To give rock-solid understanding of God’s power over creation, try creating a scene like this one, using 12 stones, some glue and a few fish stickers on a blue backdrop.
The wall-hanging is a great way to engage in the story of crossing the Jordan. The idea comes from Bee Intentional.
Try this activity while learning from Session 5, or do it together with your group after an activity that took courage to commemorate the occasion, like the Israelites built their 12-stone marker after crossing the Jordan river. Build stone sculptures with your group out of stones and glue, like the ones described on Grace and Wondering.
As you work on this craft with stones, consider: I wonder what it was like to get to go into the river and pick up a stone? I wonder what the memorial they built looked like? I wonder what these stones could help us remember about following God?
6 Courage for a Lifetime
In the final session, we think about maintaining our courage. To demonstrate the point, try this activity with a zip-close plastic bag of water and some pencils. Watch together and share about how we need God to stop the leaks! See the basis for the idea, and a few suggested questions you can reword for your adult groups, from Flame Creative Kids.
Check out “Choose Courage” and other fun and inclusive Bible study curriculum here!