We Must Grow

Primary Pals for Teachers
Unit 01 - The Plan of Salvation

TEXT: 2 Timothy 2:1-4; 3:14-15


The students will understand that once they have asked Jesus to come into their hearts they must continue to grow. They will be able to review the steps to salvation as outlined by the Wordless Book, concluding by naming specific ways they can help their spiritual growth.


Introduction: Show your students a plant. Ask the question: How did the life of this plant begin? Did it start out this size?

Progression of Events:

  1. New life begins when we are born again.
  2. That new life must be nurtured to grow. Use green page of Wordless Book.
  3. Timothy is an example of one who grew.
  4. Studying God's Word, praying, and witnessing to others are things that help us grow spiritually.

Climax: We should learn by the account of Timothy that it is possible to grow spiritually. Review memory verse.

Conclusion: Spiritual growth is necessary if we are to be "healthy" Christians.

Response: Your students will review the steps to salvation as suggested by the Wordless Book, concluding by naming specific ways we can help our spiritual growth.


On Paul's second of three missionary journeys, he revisited the cities of Derbe and Lystra where he met Timothy, a young convert. Paul soon saw some traits in Timothy that he admired and wanted him to accompany him on the remainder of the trip. He was on his way to revisit the churches he had established on his first trip and to deliver the decrees of the Jerusalem council to them (Acts 15:18-19).

The Book of 2 Timothy is a personal letter written by Paul, probably during a second imprisonment in Rome shortly before his death. In this epistle, Paul encourages Timothy to hold fast to his faith and the Scriptures even though trials and persecutions were assured (2 Timothy 3:14-15). Paul loved Timothy as a son (1 Timothy 1:2). Paul was acquainted with Timothy's grandmother and mother, Lois and Eunice (2 Timothy 1:5). He was evidently somewhat timid (1 Corinthians 16:10-11) but was very faithful to the work of God. He also seemed to have had many problems with illness (1 Timothy 5:23). Timothy knew what it would cost to follow Christ because he was from Lystra where Paul had been stoned and left for dead. He was deeply involved in Paul's ministry, sometimes carrying Paul's letters to the churches.


  • Show two trees or plants, one sturdy and one weak or dying. Use watering can with "Prayer" written on it, and water good plant while telling children what you are doing and how it applies to them. Once in a while, sprinkle just a few drops on small plant. Have a bag of plant food (or anything that looks right) with the word "Bible" on it. Put some on the good plant while continuing to explain how important reading the Bible is. Throw small amount of food on small plant. If we want to grow for Jesus and tell others about Him, we must feed ourselves from the Bible and talk to Jesus by praying.
  • Bring a collection of pictures of babies, younger children, older children, adults, infant animals, adult animals. Each of us was a baby at one time. However, with the right food, exercise, rest and care of us by those who love us, we all have grown. Some are adults and others are still growing. When we are first saved we are like a little baby and we need to grow up. As Christians we need the right ''food" for our hearts—that is reading the Bible, talking to Jesus, going to Sunday school. By learning our memory verses we are learning a part of the Bible, God's Book, and that helps us to grow as a Christian. When we ask other boys and girls to come with us to Sunday school we are also growing as Christians.
  • Make a heart mobile. Cut three hearts from red construction paper, in three different sizes. On the smallest, print or write "Grow," on the next size, "In," and on the largest, "Grace." In the smallest and next size punch a hole at the center top and center bottom and in the largest just a hole in the center top. Thread a piece of yarn through the holes and attach to a rectangular piece of cardboard at the top.
  • Some objects that could be used in portraying growth to your class are: seed packets, plants in various stages of growth, height measuring chart, picture album showing various stages of growth from baby through an adult.

Special Unit Instructions:

The final page, (or it may be the cover if you have purchased the Wordless Books) is the green color. You will use this color to stress spiritual growth to your class.

Tell them that the green color reminds you of new life, the everlasting life we can have in Christ. Green is the color of things which are growing outdoors—the leaves, grass, bushes, and trees.

When Jesus gives us a clean heart we are like a newborn baby in God's family. But we don't want to stay babies forever. The Bible tells us to "grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ" (2 Peter 3:18), our memory verse for this week. Go over some of the things which will help us grow as a member of God's family. These should include listening to God (learning God's Word), talking to God (prayer), talking for God (witnessing), and worshipping God (going to church and Sunday school).


  1. What are two things a Christian does every day?
  2. Why is it important to remember to read and pray?
  3. Where can we find someone to tell about Jesus?
  4. How do we continue to grow as Christians?
  5. How can we get the Word of God in our heart?
  6. What are some things about which we can pray?
  7. What can we be doing for Jesus?
  8. How do we testify to our friends?
  9. Is it necessary to read and pray every day? Why or why not?
  10. Whose fault is it if we don't grow?


  • Draw the double praying hands on a piece of flesh-colored felt (see Patterns). Make one for each student, and allow them to ''fold" the hands into the praying position as you tell about the importance of prayer.
  • Use felt squares or flannel-backed blocks. Let the children "build" towers on a flannel board, adding one block for each thing you discuss which contributes to spiritual growth.
  • Bring a series of pictures showing a baby animal and then how it looks when it is fully grown. Tell them that little Christians need to grow up to be big Christians.
  • Use this lesson as an opportunity to discuss how responding correctly to upsetting situations is one way of growing spiritually. Ask the children the following "What if?" questions, along with others you can think of. Help them clarify what might be acceptable behavior, and behavior which would bring about spiritual growth. What if Johnny hits you? What if Mary takes a doll away from you? What if we don't put away our toys? What if Mommy tells us something, but we don't listen?


Use children to stage a tableau, or pantomime actions. Have one reading the Bible, one praying and one witnessing. Tell how that makes them grow for Jesus.

Story of Madugu (CEF Press). A story of a black boy who came to know the Lord through the Wordless Book. A true story, good for reading aloud (Bible store or through CEF).

Begin your review by showing the children a real baby. Comment on its perfect little hands, feet, etc. Ask the children what a baby needs to make it grow. Then bring up a small child, and others progressively larger. Mention that someone gave each of them the things they needed in order to grow. Compare this to the spiritual, having the children help you list the things that are needed for spiritual growth.

Enlarge character on butcher paper who will be Mr. Christian (see Patterns). Accordion-pleat him in the spots indicated, lightly taping him into his shorter form. As you discuss the various things needed to make Mr. Christian grow (Bible reading, prayer, coming to Sunday school, witnessing to others, etc.) untape a section at a time and show the students how he is growing.

Do a brief skit illustrating what things are needed for growth. Give one person inedible objects such as cans, rocks, etc. Give the other real foods. Ask your students which one is getting the right kind of nourishment. Then make a like contrast concerning spiritual growth. If God's Word, church attendance and prayer are important to us, we have the proper spiritual food on which to grow. On the other hand, if we neglect those things but surround ourselves with secular reading material, worldly friends and activities, foolish talk, etc., we will find these things do not contribute to our growth spiritually.


  • Bible Children — Classroom Story and Activity Book, includes Timothy, Standard Publishing
  • Frances Hook's "Bible Pictures," includes Timothy and his grandmother, Standard Publishing