Youth leaders constantly look for ways to teach youth groups about faith in creative ways. The Bible talks a lot about faith, but giving teens tangible, physical experiences to illustrate what faith is helps make the message more concrete. Simple and free activities which involve all the youth can make the message fun and exciting. Effective leaders will spend time preparing for the activity, showing enthusiasm during the event, and spending time debriefing with the youth after the activity.
Faith Trust Course
This activity can be done either inside a large room or outside on a level grassy area. The leader arranges obstacles such as chairs around the room or outside area. One student wears a blindfold on one end, and another student stands on the other end and begins calling directions to the student on how to navigate the obstacle course to make it to the other side. Others students can act as "evil forces" by trying to distract and drown out the caller. The activity teaches listening to the true voice of God through his word to navigate at times a very dark world.
Walk of Faith
A leader places a 4-foot 2-by-4 on the ground. Other leaders blindfold all the youth and tell them that one at a time they are going to be lifted on the board, which will be about 3 feet off the ground, and see if they can walk across the board from one side to the other. The board actually never leaves the ground. Two leaders pick the first youth up and another puts his feet on the board. The leaders let the student go and encourage him to walk on the board. The activity teaches walking by faith and not by sight.
Two leaders act as missionaries and hide. They hold a small flashlight turned on and pointed straight up for games played at night or in the dark. The youth each hold a small Bible and search for the missionaries. Other leaders act as guards in a foreign country and speak with crazy accents. They seek to catch youth. When they do the youth must answer their questions about the Christian faith. If they answer correctly the youth keep searching for the missionaries. If they are wrong they go to jail until they can convince the guards to let them go by answering faith questions correctly. When they find the missionary they give them their Bible and return to the start. The game teaches the youth how to defend and explain their faith to those who have questions.
A youth stands on a table or platform about 5 feet off the ground with his back to the group. The youth leader has other youth and leaders stand below facing each other in pairs. They each reach out and grab the other by the forearms, forming a landing zone for the person on the table. Make sure you have a soft mat underneath the group for safety. The leader tells the youth to cross his arms in front and fall straight back into the group, trusting the group to catch him. Share that just as the youth trusted the group to catch him, we can trust by faith that God will always catch us when we fall in life.
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Greg Stone began writing professionally for various websites in September of 2010. He lives in Branson, Mo. and is the marketing director for Doulos Discipleship of Doulos Ministries. Stone holds a Bachelor of Science in journalism from Central Missouri University and a Master of Ministry from John Brown University.