Early this year, ten-year-old Brandon got an invitation to play on a upper level soccer team. He was so excited! Since then he’s been practicing nonstop. The thing is, though, nobody’s playing soccer these days. Instead everyone’s “social distancing” and stuck at home. Landon’s worried he won’t get to play soccer for a long time.
That might not seem like a huge worry to an adult, but to a ten year old that’s a really big deal.
Kids can worry a lot. About getting good grades. Being teased. Missing out on an opportunity.
Kids can be afraid…of the dark, of a scary dream, that someone they love will get sick, that they’ll never be good enough.
As a parent, you might struggle with fear and worry. But they still look up to you. And you’re still your kids’ biggest coach. They need you to listen, be supportive and give comfort. Besides that though, “How can you help kids get rid of fear and worry–and keep it out?”
This bubbles object lesson gives kids a concrete picture of what it takes to get rid of fear and worry. Watch the soap bubbles object lesson here. Read the full object lesson and talking points below. Even better, do the fear and worry object lesson WITH your kids.
Soap Bubbles Object lesson
Anything in [brackets] are instructions to parent/teacher
Option: Substitute “fear and worry” for anything else your child struggles with (complaining, anger).
Supplies: jar with cover, small amount of water, dish soap, food coloring or Kool-aid packet, cookie sheet, pitcher full of water
1 – Pour a little water in the jar, add 2 T. of dish soap, and screw the cover on.
2 – Start to swirl the water and soap in the jar then say…
[As you talk, keep swirling and shaking until bubbles fill the jar by the end.]
Have you ever felt worried or afraid?
Worried about a test, afraid your dad will get sick. You hear something on the news and worry what happened in another city will happen here. Or afraid that ______ (you fill in the blank).
You think about everything you have to do. Or everything you wish you could do but can’t.
You think about it. You talk about. You listen to other people talk. And pretty soon you’re filled up with more fear and more worry.
Now what do you do?
Most people try to get rid of the fear and worry themselves. They work hard at it. They try to stop being afraid and worrying. They take a deep breath and promise to do better next time—but it doesn’t work.
It’s impossible for people to get all the worry and fear out.
3 – Ask, “If love were a color, what color would it be?“
[Add a few drops of that food coloring to the pitcher of water. Then say…]
What you can do is give permission to God [open the jar here.] to scoop “the bubbles” out. Instead of praying, “God, help me stop worrying” you can pray, “Dear God, I’m sorry I haven’t trusted you to take care of me. Will you show me how much you love me? Will you fill me up with your love?”
4 – Pour the colored water into the jar until the bubbles all spill out then say…
Then God begins to fills you up up up with his love, up up to the top. Knowing he loves you and cares for you pushes out the fear and worry.
5 – Keep pouring; don’t stop!! Then say…
Once God fills you up with his love to the top, you don’t want it to stop. “Be filled with the Spirit,” Ephesians 5 says. That means be filled all the time, every minute of the day. Filled to the top and never, never stop so fear and worry can’t sneak in anymore.
What two things can you do to help keep being filled up?
- Remember what made the bubbles worse? Focusing on problems, the news, how bad things are will only make you feel worse. So figure out what those things are for you, then stay away from them. Stop Facetiming with friends or listening to the people and things that make you focus on bad instead of good.
- Remember what pushed the bubbles out? Remember God’s love. Think and spend time with people, read books and watch things that are true and good and awesome (Philippians 4:8). Changing how you think will invite God’s love and peace in and keep the fear and worry out.
May you have the power to understand, as all God’s people should, how wide, how long, how high, and how deep his love is….Then you will be made complete with all the fullness of life and power that comes from God (Ephesians 3:18-20).
What are some other ways you’ve found to help your kids conquer fear and worry?
2020 © Carol Garborg