This object lesson - The Balanced Life - combines an object kids love - bicycles - with a close look at the amazing Lord's Prayer of Matthew 6:9-13. The Lord's Prayer is much more than just a prayer. It is a map that shows the way to have a deep and rich experience with God. It shows how to live the truly balanced Christian life.

Click the image to watch. Runtime: 3:26

Let's define the balanced Christian life as keeping in a healthy relationship with our Lord. If we are looking for a quick summary of steps to take to do so, the Lord's Prayer is our answer. If the Lord's Prayer were a map, we'd find seven landmarks that would lead us along the path from birth to safe arrival in heaven. In fact, the Lord's Prayer is very much a map.

Take a look at its seven steps for successful Christian living:

1. Our Father in Heaven: God must be our FATHER. We must be born into the Lord’s family. If we do not belong to God, we will never be able to lead a balanced life as God intends. So, first order of business: Become a Christian.

2. Hallowed by your Name: God is awesome. We WORSHIP Him. As we get to know God better, we have a growing awe and respect for who He actually is. Wow! We hallow His name: Honor, elevate, raise up, worship. 

3. Your Kingdom come: God is our King. We SERVE Him. Kings are served by their subjects. Even little kids can be given simple tasks around the classroom. Let them know the things they do are loved by our King.

4. Your will be done on Earth as it is in Heaven: God is in charge. We OBEY Him. God’s will is found in the Bible. Learning God’s wisdom and instructions in His word are key to spiritual growth and success.

5. Give us today our daily bread: God provides. We DEPEND on Him. As we walk the road with Jesus we begin to understand that we must depend on Him rather than ourselves. The Lord takes care of us better than we can!

6. Forgive our sins as we forgive those who sin against us: God loves us. We LOVE Him. Christ showed His love by dying for our sins. We show our love for Him by keeping our relationship with Him healthy, the reason to confess and forgive.

7. Lead us not into temptation but deliver us from the evil one: God guides us. We WALK with Him.  No matter what happens to us on our travels through this world, those who stick with Jesus know that He will deliver us safe and secure in heaven!

As always, we have a helpful PDF lesson plan to download, no sign up required. The plan suggests two biking activities to really amplify this object lesson in a big way: A bike hike for the older kids and a bike decorating party for the younger. It would be nice if adults could help clean, repair and tune the bicycles. Click HERE.

Here are the links to download the three Watchables mentioned in the video. These are Windows PC games that are displayed and controlled by the teacher. The Prayer Race is a fun game; the kids form two teams to watch their team cars collide with phrases from the Lord's Prayer. Good to help memorization. The Lord's Map to Life is a discussion activity and the Prayer Clock is simply a clock to show when you have nothing else on the screen; it loops through phrases from the prayer. 

How to install the Watchables: Because the Watchables are coded in gaming software that kicks out each Watchable as an .exe file, Windows Defender will likely show a warning. Click the "More info" notice on their window; that allows you to download anyway. Installation from there is super straightforward and only takes a few seconds. During installation, we recommend you choose "Desktop shortcut" and uncheck "Start menu shortcuts" (because these are to be used in a classroom situation, we recommend you choose to place the run icon on your desktop screen to be easy to find). The Watchables are lightweight and run on any Windows device. Illustrated instructions HERE.

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