For younger kids
Read John 14:19-21 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=John%2014:19-21)
Ask, “Where is Jesus? Where do you think he is?” [No wrong answer here]. Then go on to say, “Did you know that Jesus also lives in us, in our hearts?” Ask, “Where is your heart?” Have kids point to where their hearts are. Then ask, “How can we show that Jesus lives in our hearts?” [Explore this idea – there are many good answers to this question, including doing good works, praying, praising God, being friendly and thoughtful.]
Give kids a piece of paper and art supplies and tell them every one is going to draw a picture of him/herself. They should draw the whole self, including their body (not just faces!). Also ask them to be sure to include their heart.
When everyone is done, ask them to share their pictures. Then ask, “How can you show that Jesus is in your heart this week?”
For older kids
Start by giving a little context: this passage is Jesus telling his disciples that God is going to send the Holy Spirit to be with them once Jesus is no longer on Earth.
Read John 14:15-21 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=John%2014:15-21)
When you’re done, ask, “Where is Jesus telling us the Holy Spirit lives?” [If you get blank looks, re-read the passage and ask them to listen to where Jesus says the Holy Spirit lives.] The answer that Jesus tells us in this passage is “In us.” The Holy Spirit and also God and Jesus – the whole trinity – live in us.
Ask, “How do you think people show that Jesus lives in them?” [Explore this idea – there are many good answers to this question, including doing good works, praying, praising God, being friendly and thoughtful.]
Go on to say, “Sometimes, when people talk about Jesus living in them, they talk about Jesus living in their hearts. Have you heard that before?” [You might get some agreement and some non-agreement. That’s okay.]
“I also think that Jesus lives in my heart, but I also think he lives in other parts of the body sometimes too. For example, do you think God lives in the hands of a surgeon who is saving someone’s life, maybe? Or maybe Jesus is in the voicebox of someone who is comforting someone who is sad?”
As an activity today, the kids are going to come up with ideas for how they think Jesus lives in different body parts. This can be funny or sincere, either is fine. Here are two ways to play the game.
One idea: Cut up strips of paper and write a bunch of different body parts on them and put them in a hat, bowl, or bag (or something that kids can pull strips out of without seeing what they are selecting). One at a time, each person picks a body part out of the hat and reads it. The first person to yell out how Jesus lives in that body part gets to pick the next slip of paper out of the hat.
Second idea: Have each person pick a body part and write it down (you can remind them to keep it clean, please). Put all the body parts in a hat or center of the table, mix them up, and then each person takes one. Then give everyone a minute to come up with how Jesus can live in that body part, and then go around the table and share.