I saw recently where a family played field hockey with pool noodles, a bouncy ball, and two laundry baskets.  We wanted to do that with our own family, because how simple is that to set up in the yard?  And then I figured why not make this game part of the family devo for the month of June?  Setting up a game outside with the family is one of the best ways to demonstrate God’s love for us. How? So glad you asked…

Preparation:  A pool noodle for each family member, two laundry baskets, and a bouncy ball (all from the Dollar Store) – and a nice evening in the backyard. (And always, snacks).

The object of field hockey is to score a goal in the basket!  There will be interference, the other team might take the ball away, but object is to get it back and score one for the team!  But seriously, the object of family field hockey is to have a good time.

Round One: Place the ball in the center, divide the family into two teams, and shout “Go!” See which team can score a goal first.

Ask those who scored how they feel, and those that didn’t how they feel?  It doesn’t feel good to have the ball taken away from you as the other team scores.    But good sportsmanship is to congratulate the other team and play again…

Round Two: Set up the ball and go for the goal again, this time allowing the youngest to make a goal by helping, encouraging, and handing off the ball to he/she.

Sometimes there are those on our team that are small or young and need encouragement for a win!  It feels good to let the ball go into their hands so that they can smile and experience a win.  How did it feel to help the youngest score a goal?

Round Three:  Set up the ball for action and only allow one person on each team to have a noodle.  The others just have to shout words of encouragement as that person goes for the ball.

Encouraging our team members is so important!  It’s never helpful to yell mean things, but it’s always helpful to shout nice things.  What words did you shout?

Round Four:  Set up the ball for another round, and this time move the baskets farther apart, so everyone has to run more. 

If the goal is really far, we sometimes get tired.  This is when teamwork is important – passing the ball – running alongside – and staying focused on the goal.  Can you imagine if the baskets were as far apart as the goals on a football field?  We’d all be tired!

Round Five:  This is the last round.  Everyone’s in the game for the win.   But now we have to use our non-dominant hand to play.  What a challenge!

There are times when we are weak, broken, or just tired and we don’t play the game well because our strength is gone.  Again, teamwork is the key, as we move on down the field and do our best to score!

Gather the family for drinks and a snack on a big blanket and talk about the game you just played.


In I Corinthians 12 it says this:

But God has put the body together, giving greater honor to the parts that lacked it, 

so that there should be no division in the body, but that its parts should have equal

concern for each other. If one part suffers, every part suffers with it; if one part is honored,

every part rejoices with it.  Now you are the body of Christ, and each one of you is a part of it.

God loves teamwork.  He’s given us members on our team (friends and family) on the field of life, and we need to help each other score goals of success, health, happiness, and more.  We aren’t made to achieve goals alone, but with the help of a team!  Every time we play a game, we have to remember that and not become focused on our own abilities and push others aside, just so we can score.  It’s important to build confidence in each other so that all finish the game well, satisfied, and victorious.

Field Hockey
by Marcy Lytle

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