Imagine thirty young children gathered around a birthday cake, candles glowing in the darkened room, children singing: "Happy Birthday, dear Jesus, Happy birthday to you." The room is festively decorated with balloons, streamers, and a large "" banner. Off to the left is a manger piled high with baby gifts and baby bottles stuffed with money. A small boy is gazing in the direction of the gifts and the manger. Perhaps you're thinking the same thing little Elijah was: "How is Jesus going to get all these presents?"
In fact, the presents were going to our local CPC. ("Inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me" Matthew 25:40.) I obtained a list of needed supplies and copied it to give the parents of the kids in my children's church group an idea of what to purchase. When others from the congregation heard about the project, they wanted to be involved too. They enjoyed filling the baby bottles with coins and bills. What's more fun than a birthday party? Here's how to plan your own birthday party for Jesus.
Invitations. Using pink and blue paper, cut an eight-inch square in half diagonally. Fold each triangle into a diaper. On the inside print the information (What: Birthday Party for Jesus, When, Where, and a contact number). Refold the diaper and secure with a pin or diaper pin sticker. Include a copy of the list of needed supplies from the CPC. An optional idea is to cut the triangles out of soft flannel and slip a paper with the information inside the diaper.
Ask your pastor for a time to present the fundraiser to the congregation. This is the time to give the baby bottles to those who wish to participate. (To avoid the cost of buying bottles, you may use junior-sized baby food jars.)
Decorations. Decorate for a child's birthday party—balloons (make sure you have one for each child to take home), streamers, and a "" banner. You could use baby toys, books, and supplies as decorations.
Games. Play Feed the Baby. Draw a large baby on a piece of poster board. Cut out and laminate a baby bottle for each child. Print the child's name on it and either verse 15 or 16 from Psalm 139. Play the game as you would Pin the Tail on the Donkey but instead using the bottles to feed the baby. The bottles can later be used as bookmarks.
Tell a Bible story. Tell the story "Moses Had a Right to Live" from Exodus 2. As you tell the story, begin with the father seeing his child for the first time. "This baby has a right to live," his father, Amram, says. When his mother, Jochebed, makes the basket and carefully puts it in the river she says, "This baby has a right to live." When Moses' sister watches to see what happens to him she says, "This baby has a right to live." When the princess picks the child out of the river she says, "This baby has a right to live." Conclude the story by saying, "Just as Moses had a right to live, every baby has ..." If you hesitate the children will say with you, "a right to live."
If a CPC director or volunteer is available, arrange for her to attend the party so the children can present the gifts to her. If the volunteer is comfortable about speaking in public, ask her to say a few words about the work of her center.
Some centers may need diapers more than other items. If so, decide on how many pounds or how many miles of diapers you wish to contribute. The children will have fun calculating the distance or poundage.
Most of all, as you plan and prepare for this event, pray that God will shower a double portion of His blessing on the party. First, ask that He will bless those working at the CPC and the young mothers they are assisting. Then ask Him to create in the hearts of those who attend the party a reverence for unborn children—a reverence that will span the years of their lives. Someday they may have the choice to make—let's pray now that they will remember that every child has a right to live!
Pamela Kuhn has authored and coauthored numerous teacher-resource books for Christian education. She is the Children's Director at her church in Muncie, Indiana. She can be contacted at WriteKuhn@aol.com.