Sermon

Deny Your Selfie

Theme

Say no to yourself and yes to Jesus.

Object

A bag of marbles; yarn

Scripture

Mark 8:31-38

Have you ever heard of the game, Marbles? Let me show you how to play. Demonstrate as you explain. First, you draw a big ring in the dirt. Draw a circle on the ground with your foot. Then explain you’ll use a piece of yarn to show kids, and place the yarn in a circular shape. Then each player puts a few of his or her own marbles into the ring. Choose a child to help you demonstrate. Put three marbles of one color and have the child put three of another color into the ring wherever he or she likes. The players then take turns shooting a marble, trying to knock the other marbles out of the ring. Flick or roll a marble toward the child’s marbles to try to knock it out. When a shooter knocks a marble out of the ring, he picks it up and puts it in his pocket. If his shooting marble stays inside the ring, he is allowed to keep shooting. If not, the next shooter takes his turn. Briefly demonstrate the basics. When all the marbles have been knocked out of the ring, they are counted and the one with the most marbles is the winner. Pick up all the marbles. 

Before a game of marbles begins, one player will sometimes ask the other players, "Are we playing for fun, or are we playing for keeps?" If you just play for fun, when the game is over, the winner gives the marbles back. But if you play for keeps, the winner gets to keep all of the marbles he has won.

Some people live their lives like a game of marbles, always trying to have the most “marbles.” They think that the one with the biggest house, the fanciest car, and the most money in the bank is the winner. They think they are playing "for keeps," but, how much do they take with them when their lives are over? Nothing! 

Jesus said that if we want to be real winners we must be willing to give up everything and follow Him. We may not live in a big house or drive a fancy car, but when we follow Jesus we have something much better--treasures in heaven. In heaven we’ll walk on streets of gold and we’ll live forever with Jesus. 

Dear God, help us realize that the only life that lasts is a life lived for You. In Jesus' name, amen.

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