Ishmael and Hagar are two rather bit characters that seem to show a deviation from God’s plan, but God is a god of second chances, a God who provides and a God who will guide even the most lost of characters onto a life of great meaning. These games look at these 3 ideas and try and illustrate one or more of them
Specific hunt– This is a basic treasure hunt game with a slight twist. Hide lots and lots of coloured papers around the room and get the children to hunt for them. Hide one last piece of paper, with the word ‘water’ written on it, in a very difficult place. When the game has finished tell the children that the winner of the game is the one with the paper that says water. It’s probable that no child has this piece, if so give them detailed instructions to find it. Link it into the idea that Ishmael and Hagar wandered a long time but needed God’s Angel to help them find water.
Blind man’s buff– little children love this game, as do some older ones too! It links well to the idea of Ishmael and Hagar wandering in the wilderness.
Target Challenge– Place a target on the wall, this can be just a circle drawn on paper or Goggle a good image to print. then give each child the means of making their own bow and arrow to shoot. You will need to pre soak the craft sticks for at least an hour, add to these some dental floss (for the bow string), some cotton buds (q-tips). Here are some nice picture instructions. At the end of the story time talk about how Ishmael became a very skilled bowman.
Second chances – This is a minute to win it game called dizzy mummy. The aim of the game is to unravel a toilet roll by spinning on the spot. It’s a silly game that you lose if you tear the paper. Most children will fail to unravel the entire roll but God is a god of second chances, let your chosen volunteer have a second or third chance according to your time. At the end use the empty rolls as telescopes and talk about Hagar getting directions from the angel. For a video description of the game click here.
Directions – This is a simple copy me type game for the very young. Have the children copy the leader jumping, walking, hopping, and spinning round the room. Occasionally give an impossible instruction (eg. lick your elbow, fly, touch your nose with your chin, wiggle your ears, etc) then stop, say ‘oops’ or something to show that was wrong and announce ‘Plan B’ and give a new instruction.
Abundance – Have the children do something tiring, like hopping. As each child quits give then a sticker or small piece of candy. The last child, or those left when the time slot ends, gets a bigger reward. Then open your bag to reveal lots of rewards, give each child another reward. Explain that even when we fail God doesn’t stop providing for us.