There’s a Friday the 13th in March this year, so why not talk to our kiddos about superstitions?  After all, do bad things really happen on Friday the 13th?  If they haven’t heard it already, they will start to hear about sayings and things people believe that are silly and absurd.  Some say…that the fear of the 13th began back in Jesus’ day when Judas was the 13th person at the table on the Friday before the resurrection. What?

Whatever the origin, we know that superstitions are not based on anything to fear.  In fact, there is no reason to live in fear, and our kids need to be taught that now, before they grow to invite fear as a friend.  Fear is NOT a friend, and we need to tell them why…

Preparation: Let’s look at some silly superstitions and banish fear!  Scroll down and cut out the pictures and lay them out on the table. Let the kids draw one as you talk and learn, and enjoy a fun snack together. 

First let’s define luck – it’s thinking things occur or don’t occur in our life just due to an accident or something random like rubbing a rabbit’s foot.  Yes, some people carry a rabbit’s foot in their pocket to bring them good luck, but all it brings is a dirty pocket!

Step on a crack, break your mother’s back – this is meant to say that if you step on a crack in the sidewalk then bad luck will happen.  Is there such a thing as bad luck, to those who follow Jesus? No way.  The Bible says in this world we will have trials (hard things) but they are NOT due to bad luck. 

Bad things do happen, but God has already promised to work everything together for good and give us the hope of healing and a forever home without any pain or sorrow! (Romans 8:28)

Don’t walk under a ladder!  Supposedly, criminals had to walk under a ladder on their way to the gallows a long time ago.  All sorts of phrases and things people say are rooted in stories that have nothing to do with our lives today.  It might be wise to avoid the ladder in case it falls, but walking under a ladder won’t bring us all sorts of woes.  It’s good counsel to listen to sound wisdom (like look before you cross a street) but not silly sayings. (Proverbs 8:17)

A broken mirror brings 7 years of bad luck – Remember when Snow White peered into the mirror to ask “Who’s the fairest of them all?”  An evil witch looked back at her.   People in ancient times actually consulted mirrors about their lives – isn’t that crazy?  The only mirror we need to consult is God’s word that tells us that we are beautifully and wonderfully made, and our future is secure. (Psalm 139:14)

Black cats on your path are bad luck – Black cats were thought to house evil spirits and therefore if they crossed your path, they brought evil into your lives.  Cats are just cats.  And we carry God’s spirit in us that enables us to walk without fear on any path he leads us.  Black, yellow, white – it doesn’t matter – cats are just animals that God created to make us smile.  Never be afraid of what people say…and walk on His paths without fear. (Proverbs 3:5, 6)

Knock on wood if you want something good to happen – People used to believe that kind spirits lived in wood so if they knocked, the kind spirit would make something nice happen.  It’s silly to think that something that has no breath can live and do anything at all.  It’s just not true!  Knocking on wood should only be done when we’re knocking to enter a door to visit a friend.  And when we ask, seek, and knock in prayer. (Matthew 7:7)

Find a penny pick it up, and have good luck – Somehow people began believing that if they stopped to pick up the smallest denomination of coin they would have good luck.  Who knows why they believed that?  Finding a penny might be fun, but everything cost more than a penny, that’s for sure!  Saving pennies, and then giving them away, now that’s a wise thing to do. (Mark 12:41-44)

How do people start believing these silly sayings?  It seems that someone starts it and others follow.  We have to be careful about who we listen to and what we follow as truth.  The only truth about who God is and how he cares for us is found in His word.   We have to read about his character and his care over our lives. 

He isn’t about bringing us “good luck” so that we can have a life where we win at everything we do.  He’s about making us into his image of a caring, loving, whole individual without fear and without sin, able to live in peace and joy for all eternity. And that doesn’t happen by hoping for good luck and avoiding back luck, but by simply believing in Jesus and loving him with all our hearts.  He has then promised to be with us in every hard time, carry us through, and meet ALL of our needs.

And that’s the truth!   


(Click up top to download the study and the images for the devo!)                                                                             

Friday the 13th
by Marcy Lytle

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