When I ask young people about their Bible classes, many express frustration at the inability to make connections with the content they are being taught. They don’t express it that way though. Instead, they will comment about knowing Bible stories, but not knowing what to do with them. Or they will say they don’t understand how the Bible applies to our world today. Or they may express confusion when asked about the over arching story of the Bible.
There’s a simple activity you can do to help them begin making more connections. Take index cards and write the names of people, ideas, commands….anything from the Bible. With younger students this will need to be more concrete than with older students. Make a set of cards for every three or four students.
Divide the class into small teams and give each team a set of cards. Have them record every connection they can find in the set of cards, as well as how they connect. So for example, they may say David and Jesus connect because Jesus is a descendant of David. Or they may group a bunch of Apostles together. Or the word love with Jesus and the Apostle John. You get the idea.
Set a time limit and see which team comes up with the most connections. Have them share their connections to make sure they are correct. If any cards were left unconnected, how can they figure out ways to discover how they may connect to other things in the Bible?
Doing this exercise periodically can help your students start to make crucial connections in the information they are learning from the Bible. As they become more comfortable, you can adapt the game by adding things from their world into the pack of cards. They will need to connect Bible cards with “life” cards to get points. With practice, those missed connections will start to fall in place and help them put together the pieces of their faith in a cohesive way.