This game is a twist on the popular “Red Light – Green Light” game that kids often play. It’s high energy with a spiritual teaching point at the end.
- Jonah 1:1-3
- Hebrews 12:1-2
- Select a wide-open space to play the game.
- Choose a highly-visible object or point to be the “Finish Line” and another place to be the “Start Line.”
- Practice the script.
Use the following script (or modify to suit your needs):
- “How many of you have played a game called ‘Red Light – Green Light’ before?” (Look for a show of hands.)
- “Well, we’re going to play a game like that, but I’m going to change the rules just a little.”
- “In ‘Red Light – Green Light,’ everyone starts at a starting line, and the person who is leading is far away.”
- “The leader faces everyone and says, ‘Red Light!’ and everyone has to freeze right where they are.”
- “If the leader sees anyone moving even a little, he can send them back to the start line.”
- “But when the leader turns his back to everyone, he says, ‘Green Light!’ and everyone runs as far as they can toward him before he turns around again and says, ‘Red Light!’”
- “The first person to reach the leader and tag him wins and gets to be the new leader for another round of the game.”
- “So, those are the regular rules. Here are my new backward rules.”
- “Instead of running toward the leader, you are going to run away from the leader.”
- “The first person to reach the finish line will be the winner.” (Tell them what the finish line will be, and point out where everyone will start.)
- “Does that make sense to everyone?” (Look for questions and respond.)
- “Okay, the other rule is still the same.”
- “When I’m facing you, I’ll call out, ‘Red Light!’ and everyone has to freeze right where they are.”
- “But when I turn around, I’ll call out, ‘Green Light!’ and you can run like crazy!”
- “Any questions?” (Respond to any questions.)
- “Okay, I’ll be leader first.” (Position yourself in the middle of the “Start Line,” and have everyone line up on either side of you along the same line. Start by facing them. Then quickly turn around and yell out, “Green Light!” Don’t give them much time to run. Quickly turn back around, and yell, “Red Light!” If you see anyone still moving or even twitching (depending upon how strict you want to be with the rules), make them come back to the “Start Line.” Repeat this process until someone reaches the “Finish Line.” Then make that person the new leader. Run through several rounds of the game, and then bring everyone back for a debrief using the following questions.)
Debrief Questions & Discussion
- “What did you think of the game?”
- “Let’s pretend that the leader of the game is like God. How does the game compare to how some people act toward God?” (You are listening for someone to mention that people are often moving away from (even running away from!) God. Running away from God is the equivalent of sinning and putting distance in our relationship.)
- “That reminds me of someone in the Bible who ran from the Lord.” (Have a volunteer read Jonah 1:1-3.)
- “Jonah ran from the Lord. How did that work out for him?” (Listen for someone to mention that he was swallowed by a great fish for three days.)
- “Not so well, right?”
- “So, if the leader is God, what could the ‘Red Light!’ and ‘Green Light!’ represent for Christians?” (You are listening for someone to say that the red light is like when we feel God is watching us and we have to be on our best behavior. The green light is like when we pretend God isn’t watching and we can do whatever we want, even if it’s bad for us to do.)
- “Do you think this is the way God actually acts toward us?” (Hopefully the kids will know that it is not the way God acts toward us.)
- “So how DOES God act toward us? What’s different than the game?” (God is always watching over us. Even when we don’t feel close to Him, He hasn’t turned away from us. He never gives a “Green Light” to sin. And even though He always has a “Red Light” to sin, He isn’t trying to catch us doing something wrong. He is encouraging us to come running to Him and not away from Him.)
- “The Scriptures say that we should be running toward God.” (Have volunteer read Hebrews 12:1-2.)
10. “We should keep our eyes on Jesus and throw off anything that might slow us down as we race toward Him.”
11. “So, let’s change the rules again, and this time, everyone see how fast you can get to God with no ‘Red Lights!’” (Choose someone to be the leader/”God,” and have the kids line up at the former “Finish Line,” which will now be the new “Start Line.” When the leader/”God” says, “Green Light!” everyone should race to see how fast they can reach and tag him. Instruct the leader not to give any “Red Lights.”)
3 responses to “Red Light – Green Light (GAME)”
This is a great game. I was trying to think of a game to go along with my Sunday school lesson on Daniel 3 about obedience. Thanks for sharing this game!
Thank you for the feedback, Timothy. I hope it works well with your lesson.
Great idea. I am going to try it this Sunday.