UNCATEGORIZED
UNASSIGNED

Time
30-45 minutes

Description
This object lesson is used as a highlight to the story of Peter walking on water.

The lesson is big and expensive. It takes lots of time to prepare, and it’s messy. It’s best reserved for large events. That said, there’s a lot of “wow factor.” This will be an activity that they will remember for years.

Scriptures
• Matthew 14:22-36

Materials
• Drop cloth for the floor (if you do it indoors)
• Cornstarch (8 lbs for every gallon)
• Water (1.5 gallons for every 8 lbs of corn starch)
• Kiddie swimming pool (90 gallons or more)
• Example: – if you use a 90 gallon pool, you will need 288 lbs of corn starch and 54 gallons of water
• Several buckets, water bottles, electric fans, rolls of blue wrapping paper
• Write out the following note cards with script for part of your enactment:
o Jesus: It’s all right. I am here! Don’t be afraid.
o Peter: Lord, if it’s really you, tell me to come to you by walking on the water.
o Jesus: All right…come.
o Peter: Save me, Lord!
o Jesus: You don’t have much faith. Why did you doubt me?

Preparation
• It’s best to do this activity outside because of the potential mess, but if you do it inside, lay out a drop cloth.
• Several hours before you run the lesson, mix the cornstarch and the water in the pool.
• It’s best to mix it in small quantities and then pour them into the pool. (I recommend mixing 4.5 gallons of water with 24 lbs of cornstarch each time.)
• Test the consistency by slapping or punching the surface. It should harden up and resist your blows.
• If this works, you should be able to run across or even on top of the surface. Use very quick steps.
• Have a way for those who get stuck in the pool to wash off.
• Set up a place in the teaching area near the pool to be a “boat.” You can do this with some cardboard boxes or with masking tape, or you could just designate an area of the floor as the “boat.”
• Put the buckets in the “boat.”
• Fill the water bottles with water.
• Set up the electric fans so that they face the boat.
• Roll out the blue wrapping paper on the floor (blue side up) under the boat or across the area of the designated “boat.”

Procedure
Use the following script (or modify to suit your needs):

  • “After Jesus fed the 5,000, He went to a quiet place and prayed to God, the Father, and the disciples got into a boat to head across the lake.”
  • “The disciples sailed away from the shore and were in the middle of the Sea of Galilee when a huge storm rolled in!” (Ask for 12 volunteers, and have them get into the “boat.” Select one of them to be Peter. As you tell the story, they should act out what you are saying. Then get volunteers to spray the water bottles, turn the fans on and off, turn the lights on and off and create waves with the wrapping paper by holding either end and waving it up and down.)
  • “It was dark. The wind was howling!” (Have your fan volunteers turn on the fans.) “Water sprayed over the sides of the boat and drenched the apostles!” (Have your water bottle volunteers spray the apostles, and have your wave volunteers wave the paper up and down.) “Lightning flashed across the sky.” (Have your lights volunteer flick the lights on and off.)
  • “They were afraid that they might sink, so they used buckets to try and bail water out of the boat.” (Have the apostle-volunteers pretend to bail water.)
  • “Hours went by, and the apostles grew very tired. About 3 o’clock in the morning, things got worse!”
  • ‘A ghost came walking across the water straight at them!” (Have a volunteer play Jesus and run across the pool of “water” toward the others.)
  • “This was one fast-moving ghost!”
  • “They screamed in terror!” (If the disciples don’t scream, say, “A-hem, I said that the apostles screamed in terror!”)
  • “Then, something totally incredible happened!” (Have your helpers say the following lines from their note cards.)
  • Jesus: It’s all right. I am here! Don’t be afraid.
  • Peter: Lord, if it’s really you, tell me to come to you by walking on the water.
  • Jesus: All right…come.
  • “Peter went over the side of the boat and started walking on the water toward Jesus!” (Have Peter character run across the pool of “water.”)
  • “But then, he took his eyes off Jesus and looked around.”
  • “He saw the high waves! He noticed the howling wind!”
  • “He became terrified and began to sink under the water!” (Have character act this out running to the center of the pool, stopping and crying out.)
  • Peter: Save me, Lord!
  • “Jesus reached out His hand and grabbed Peter.” (Have character act this out by reaching in to grab “Peter” from outside the pool.)
  • Jesus: You don’t have much faith. Why did you doubt me?
  • “Jesus and Peter climbed back into the boat, and immediately, the wind stopped.” (Have “Peter” and “Jesus” join the other volunteers beside the pool.)
  • “Then the disciples worshipped Jesus.” (Have volunteers bow down to Jesus.)
  • “And they said, ‘You really are the Son of God!’”
  • “Peter walked on water! Can you believe that?”
  • “But then he began to sink.”
  • “Tell me…why did Peter start to sink into the water?” (He took his eyes off Jesus.)
  • “That’s right. He took his eyes of Jesus. He looked around at all the scary stuff around him, and he began to think, ‘I’m in big trouble. A person can’t walk on water! That’s impossible! I must have been crazy thinking I could have walked on water!’”
  • “Of course, Peter was right, but he forgot one very important thing…all things are possible with God!”
  • “When Peter began to sink under the water, he had a problem, but I’m learning that whenever I have a problem, I should give it to Jesus.”
  • “Anytime that I feel like I’m sinking under all my problems, I need to give them to Jesus.”
  • “As long as I keep my eyes on Him, He helps me with my problems.”
  • “But if I start to focus on the scary things that are happening around me, I’ll start to sink again.”
  • “Now you may think Peter looked pretty silly when he took his eyes off Jesus and began to sink under water, but I don’t.”
  • “I admire Peter for having the courage to get out of the boat.”
  • “Peter was a Water Walker!”
  • “You know what all the other guys were? They were Boat Huggers!”
  • “While Peter walked on the water, they hugged the boat in fear.”
  • “Jesus told Peter that he only had a little faith, but even his little faith was a lot more than the Boat Huggers had.”
  • “A Water Walker trusts in God.”
  • “A Water Walker does the scary things that God wants him to do.”
  • “A Water Walker gets out of the boat to get closer to Jesus.”
  • “If you want to get closer to Jesus, you’re going to have to get out of the boat and walk on water.”
  • “Any of you want to be Water Walkers for Jesus?” (Allow all that are interested to take a run across the pool of “water.” If they are brave, have them try to do cartwheels or other gymnastics over the surface. They can even hop or dance in the center for an extended period of time without sinking.)

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