Children’s Sermon

Matthew 23:1-12

Showing Off

By Dr. Dan Wuori

Have you ever heard someone called a “show-off?” Is that a good thing to be called? What does it mean? (Solicit children’s responses)

That’s right, when we show-off we’re wanting to call attention to ourselves. Usually we’re hoping that people will notice something special about us – maybe something we can do really well.

Everyone likes to be recognized for doing a good job, but sometimes showing-off can be a problem. Showing-off can hurt people’s feelings, can’t it?

And sometimes people show-off how they do one thing because they feel less special about how they do others. Or maybe they even are less special in those ways.

That’s what happens in today’s Gospel lesson…Jesus calls a group of people show-offs!

He doesn’t use those words, exactly – but it’s what he’s doing. He tells them that they only do the right things when other people are watching.

Do you think he likes that? Why not? (Solicit children’s responses)

That’s right! It’s one thing to be good when everyone is watching – but if they’re only doing this during part of their lives then it sounds like they’ve got some work to do, doesn’t it?

Today Jesus tells us that we should live humbly. That means that instead of calling attention to how special we are (and showing-off for others), that we should be modest and remember that in God’s eyes we’re no more – or less important – than others.

So remember this:

We do good things because they’re right. Not because someone is watching.

Let’s pray.

Dear God,

Help us to avoid the temptation to be show-offs. Let us live humbly in your eyes.

Copyright 2008, Dan Wuori. Used by permission.