Lois Parker Edstrom
Object suggested: Old fashioned ice cream maker, if available. Lesson could be expanded to actually make and eat ice cream if situation permits.
Picture of an ice cream maker
Does your family have traditions – things that you do every year to celebrate a holiday or enjoy time together as a family?
One of our family traditions is that we all gather together to celebrate the 4th of July, also called Independence Day, and one of the things we do each year is make homemade ice cream in an old fashioned ice cream maker. (This lesson can be adapted to allow the teacher to illustrate the lectionary text using a personal family tradition.)
After we put cream, sugar, and vanilla into the metal container, which is inside the bucket, we fill the space around it with ice and salt. Then everyone takes turns rotating the crank until the ingredients are frozen into ice cream. It takes about twenty minutes of hard work to make ice cream this way. We make one tub of vanilla ice cream and one tub of strawberry ice cream. This is our tradition.
What would happen if one year we decided to make chocolate ice cream? Or peach or cherry ice cream?
Our tradition of making vanilla and strawberry ice cream is a custom we have enjoyed and it has worked well for us, but a new choice is also a good idea and would bring about a fresh change. We don’t even have to give up the old way of making ice cream; we can add something to our tradition.
In the Old Testament of the Bible we learn that people lived by laws that are called commandments. The people asked Jesus, “Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the law?” (22:36)
Jesus answered,“You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind. This is the first and great commandment“ (22:36, 37).
Jesus did not take away the tradition of the old laws, but added a new law that had fresh meaning for the people. What could be better than focusing your attention on loving God with all your heart, soul and mind? You can’t go wrong doing that and each one of us can all add this new law to our own traditions at anytime.
Scripture quotations from the World English Bible
Copyright 2008, Richard Niell Donovan