The Parable of the Lost Coin

In Luke 15:8-10 Jesus describes the Kingdom of Heaven as if a poor widow had lost a coin. She would search the whole house until she found it. And once she found that coin she would be filled with joy.

To explore this story we used a simple rice bin and some God coins from St. Patrick’s Day.

Rice Bin

What You Need:


-Big play coins (you could also use a roll of quarters

What you do:

1. Pour rice into bin.

2. Hide coins in Rice

How to Play

Let your child explore the bin while you read or retell the story. Guide them to find all the coins. Help them count how many coins they find.

For extra fine motor work have your child put the coins in a piggy bank or old wipes container.

Emphasize the joy the woman had when she found the coin that was lost. Explain that that is how Jesus feels when we choose to trust him.

What’s the Point

When the widow lost this coin, it wasn’t like she simply lost a penny on the sidewalk. A widow in Jesus day would be as if a woman had lost her husband (or even in her husband left her, and was a dead beat). She would be left to care for all of her children. Alone. She needed every penny she made to put food on the table, clothes on her children, and lights on in the house.

Now let’s say she loses her paycheck. Maybe she set it on the kitchen table and her 3 year-old run off with it. She probably would have been struggling with some mom anger. Definitely had some fear. How were they going to eat? Keep the lights on? Pay rent?

Can you imagine the despair? The anxiety.

She turns over every chair. Searches every closet. As she is about to give up hope and prepare for the reality of eviction, she sees it. In the corner. There it is! The coin. Hope.

That’s what this story is. Joy! Waves and waves of tear-filled relief. That is the kingdom of heaven. That is how it feels when justice is enacted. The wrongs are made right. And when the wandering children come home.

That is how God feels about you, my friend. When we learn to abide and let his goodness transform us into his image. When that image impacts the world around us. When God’s kingdom comes.

What does it mean for you to have God’s Kingdom come into your life?

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