A Walk on Water


February 8 – March 7, 2004


Bread of Life Cafe



Scripture:    Matthew 14:22-33         


Memory Verse:   “Christ gives me the strength to face anything.”  Philippians 4:12 (CEV)



  • Jesus, as the Son of God, is powerful.
  • Jesus gives us the power to do God’s work in the world.
  • Faith is believing God is with us.
  • If we focus on Jesus, our faith is strengthened.



The objectives of this workshop are to teach the children the Matthew passage and to have the children realize and have faith in the amazing power of Jesus.  A fun cooking demonstration will help them to remember this lesson.



Welcome and Introductions:


1.     Greet the children and introduce yourself.  Wear your nametag. Make sure the children are wearing nametags. If not, ask the shepherd to supply a temporary badge. Remember you are interacting with a different group of students each week that may not know you.

2.     The children should be seated outside the kitchen.  Explain the purpose of this workshop:  Today we will be reading the Bible and watching an adult prepare a very special treat to help you understand the amazing power of Jesus.  Before we prepare our treat, we’re going to read the Bible story for today.


Scripture/Bible Story:


Ask the children to open their Bibles, if they have them, to Matthew 14:22. 


Warm-Up Discussion and Questions:  This passage is from the book of Matthew.  Does anyone know in what part of the Bible we would find the book of Matthew?  New Testament   What is the book of Matthew about?  The life of Jesus.  Why is the life of Jesus so important to us?  Jesus died so that our sins could be forgiven.   What do we have to do to have our sins forgiven?  Believe in the risen Jesus.  


Read the Scripture passage Matthew 14:22-33 from the CEV (see note about who should read the Bible during class at the end of this lesson):


From Matthew 14

Jesus Walks on the Water

22Right away, Jesus made his disciples get into a boat and start back across the lake. But he stayed until he had sent the crowds away. 23Then he went up on a mountain where he could be alone and pray. Later that evening, he was still there. 24By this time the boat was a long way from the shore. It was going against the wind and was being tossed around by the waves. 25A little while before morning, Jesus came walking on the water toward his disciples. 26When they saw him, they thought he was a ghost. They were terrified and started screaming.
27At once, Jesus said to them, "Don't worry! I am Jesus. Don't be afraid."
28Peter replied, "Lord, if it is really you, tell me to come to you on the water."
29"Come on!" Jesus said. Peter then got out of the boat and started walking on the water toward him.
30But when Peter saw how strong the wind was, he was afraid and started sinking. "Save me, Lord!" he shouted.
31Right away, Jesus reached out his hand. He helped Peter up and said, "You surely don't have much faith. Why do you doubt?"
32When Jesus and Peter got into the boat, the wind died down. 33The men in the boat worshiped Jesus and said, "You really are the Son of God!"

Discussion after the Passage: 


What did Jesus do near the beginning of the passage?   He prayed.  Did you know that Jesus prayed?  Try to get some response from children.  Why do you think he prayed?  To talk to God, to be with God, to get direction… What do you think that tells us?  All of us should also pray regularly.  If Jesus needed prayer, we need prayer, too.  What was the most amazing thing in the story?  Jesus and Peter walking on the water.  How did Jesus walk on the water?  Jesus was able to do this because he was the Son of God. This gave him power over everything.   How did Peter walk on the water?  Peter needed Jesus to be with him and to command him to do it.  Peter also needed faith. Why did Peter start to sink? He had faith at first, but then he allowed himself to doubt, and he began to sink.   What happened when Peter began to sink?  He called out to Jesus, and Jesus saved him.  Is this something we can do when we need help?  YES! We can always call out to Jesus to save us.  Can we walk on the water if we believe in Jesus?  Probably not.  This was just something that happened at this particular time in history.


From this passage, we learned that Jesus, the Son of God, is powerful.  He could walk on the water, and he could allow other people to walk on the water.  He can give us the power to do things, especially things for God.  Peter had faith when he believed that Jesus was with him.  When Peter was focused on faith in Jesus, he was able to walk on the water. 


Now we are going to prepare a special treat to help us remember the ideas in the Matthew passage.


Cooking Application:



  1. Before the children arrive, have all the ingredients for the Baked Ice Cream ready.  You will need a cookie sheet and a large spoon and knife for spreading the meringue.  Keep the ice cream and cake slices in the freezer until you are ready to assemble.  You could put out some plastic knives for the children to help spread the meringue, but after preparing this myself, I think it will work better to have an adult do the whole thing and just consider it a cooking demonstration.  Prepare the meringue mixture up to the point where you are going to whip it next.  Preheat the oven to 450 degrees.
  2. After the Bible story, have all the children wash their hands, or pass out squirts of hand wash and paper towels.   Then they should come quietly to the kitchen.  As you whip the meringue, you can explain that you are beating egg whites to make meringue.  Tell them it is part of a treat called Baked Ice Cream.  This should only take about 3 minutes.
  3. Have an adult get the cake slice and ice cream out of the freezer and place the cake slice on the cookie sheet and the ice cream slice on top of this.  Spoon the meringue generously on all sides of the ice cream/cake and spread it out until all surfaces are covered.  The children could help to spread it out if you want to try this.  The meringue should cover the crack between the cake and the cookie sheet.
  4. Have the children stay away from the hot oven, but they can watch an adult verify that the oven is very hot.  Then an adult should put the ice cream/cake in the oven.  Set a timer for 5 minutes.  During this time, you can ask the children whether they have ever baked ice cream and what they think the ice cream will look like after being baked in a hot oven.
  5. You can also tell them that this dessert was probably invented around 1700 but became popular in the United States in 1867 when a chef made it and named it Baked Alaska to celebrate the United States’ purchase of Alaska from Russia in 1867.
  6. When the timer goes off, the Baked Ice Cream should have browned spots.  When it is done, remove it from the oven and cut it open to show how the ice cream did not melt, even in a hot oven.  You can then cut it into about 8 slices, crosswise, and cut each of these slices into 2 pieces to give a little to each child (you will need paper plates and spoons).  If someone doesn’t want ice cream or cannot eat it, they cannot “save it for later,” because it will melt now.  You might want to have an alternate treat.  As the children are eating, you can have them sit or stand and tie in the Bible story to the cooking activity.  See suggested discussion below.


Suggested Discussion:


If we had put ice cream in the oven by itself, what would have happened?  It would have melted.  What kept the ice cream from melting?  The egg white meringue acted like a thermos to protect the ice cream from the heat.  It allowed the ice cream to do something it could never do by itself.  Think about Jesus in our “Walk on the Water” story.  How do you think Jesus was like meringue in our Bible story?  Let them attempt a few answers then summarize by saying that Jesus allowed Peter  to walk on the water—something he could never have done by himself, someplace he couldn’t go by himself, just like the meringue helped out the ice cream.  Who is the meringue in our lives (who helps us/protects us)?  May think of parents or friends, but if no one mentions Jesus say it yourself.  You can summarize by saying that Jesus is the meringue in our lives because he allows us to go to heaven—someplace we could never go by ourselves. 


The following is a bigger concept for the children. They may have difficulty in “getting it”.  You may want to save this for the third through fifth graders.   Did you notice how the meringue had brown spots on it from the heat?  Do these marks on the meringue remind anyone of something about Jesus, maybe something that we think about at Easter?   The scars on his hands and feet.  Jesus bears the scars on his hands and feet—all to save us from our own sins.  The meringue bears the marks of saving the ice cream from melting.  If your parents ask you what Baked Ice Cream has to do with Jesus, just tell them it is a memory device to help you remember this day and this story. 


·       Jesus, as the Son of God, is powerful.  Like the meringue, he is able to protect us.

·       Jesus gives us the power to do God’s work in the world just as the meringue gave the ice cream the power to stay frozen in the oven.

·       Faith is believing God is with us. Unfortunately, we do not have something we can see like meringue to cover ourselves, but we can cover ourselves with faith in Jesus, and that is MORE powerful than the meringue even though it is invisible.

·       If we focus on Jesus, our faith is strengthened.  Each day we live believing in Jesus’ power, the easier it gets to live that way.


Tidy and Dismissal: You can have the children to help tidy up by throwing away their trash.  You can also try to get help washing and drying the cooking equipment and putting it away if there is time. 


Reflection Time:

If there is time, ask the shepherds to pass out the pencils or markers. Tell the children to draw a picture or write a sentence about Peter and Jesus walking on the water so they can remember how the Baked Ice Cream was a fun activity to teach them the concepts in this passage.  The workshop leader(s) and shepherd(s) can help parents by writing a caption on any pictures.  If time is limited, pass out the journal pages for the children to take home with them.


At 10:45, close with prayer.



Prayer:  Write you own or use this example.  Thank you Jesus for sharing your power with us and for allowing us to go to heaven only because we have faith in you.     


Teacher preparation in advance:

1.     Pray that God will guide you to teach what He wants taught during this workshop and scripture passage.  Pray for a loving and patient attitude toward the children.  Pray for time management during the workshop.

2.     Read the scripture passages and attend the Faith Quest Leaders Bible Study.

3.     Please practice reading the scripture passage out loud several times.  See Who Should Read section of this lesson for encouragement.  

4.     Check out the kitchen before your first Sunday workshop so that you will know where everything is located and how the oven works. You may need to bring equipment from home, including a mixer. 

5.     Purchase the ingredients for the Baked Ice Cream—you can submit a form to be reimbursed.

6.     You will probably want to make the Baked Ice Cream at home so you are familiar with the process. 

7.     Prepare a closing prayer.


Who Should Read the Bible in Class


As the writer of this lesson and also as a Faith Quest teacher, I strongly encourage you, the workshop leader, to read the Bible passage yourself and only after practicing it before your first Sunday. 


Catherine Devins, who helped Rev. Joan McCarthy bring the workshop rotation to the Kirk, suggests that “the workshop leader be sure to prepare a reading with emphasis and energy and excitement as appropriate.”  Drawing from personal experience, she says, “When I teach, I do the reading and ask the kids to follow along. Often I set up the story in an animated way, and then read with as much drama as I can get away with.”


Allergen Information


The Baked Ice Cream contains pound cake, ice cream, and an egg product.  If there is a child allergic to any of these substances, they can still participate by watching, and perhaps an alternate treat can be provided. 


Supply List


Ingredients for Baked Ice Cream (this will be enough to make one item each week for five weeks and make one trial item):

            3 pound cakes

            3 quarts of ice cream, any favor

            Just Whites Powder, 8 oz container


            Powdered Sugar         

            Cream of Tartar

Equipment for preparing and serving Baked Ice Cream (cookie sheet, plastic knives, mixer with very clean bowl, large spoon, knife)

Paper plates and spoons, maybe plastic knives




Notes supplied by Lori Houck for curriculum writers' Bible study

Baked Ice Cream recipe modified but based on “Baked Alaska” from and Just Whites Meringue Recipe modified from recipe on container.





Baked Ice Cream


Makes 2 items.


The key to this dessert is keeping the cake and the ice cream as cold as possible, so be sure not to thaw the cake or soften the ice cream before assembling. We recommend using ice cream that comes in paper quarts, so it is easy to remove.


1 (10 3/4-oz) frozen pound cake, not thawed
1 quart ice cream
2 recipes of Just Whites Meringue* (recipe below)


Ahead of time:  Remove cake from container and turn on side.  Cut frozen cake lengthwise into 2 pieces—one piece will have the entire top of the cake, one piece will have the entire bottom.  Wrap in foil and refreeze individually.  (You will only use one slice per Baked Ice Cream.)  Remove paper container from block of ice cream.  Place block on cutting board with bottom side as it was in the container down.  Cut along the longest side in half lengthwise from top to bottom. (Your knife will be parallel with the longest side.)  Wrap in plastic wrap and then in foil and refreeze separately.  Each Baked Ice Cream will use only one ice cream piece.

When you are ready to prepare the Baked Ice Cream, preheat oven to 450°F. 

If you are making both Baked Ice Cream items on the same day, double this recipe for meringue. 


Just Whites Meringue

¼ cup Just Whites powder

¾ cup water

½ cup powdered sugar

¼ teaspoon cream of tartar

1 teaspoon vanilla flavoring

In a mixer bowl, add Just Whites to the water and break up slightly with a fork.  Let stand at least 2 minutes.  Beat on medium speed until the Just Whites have dissolved and the mixture is frothy.  Add vanilla and cream of tartar. Increase speed to high and beat, adding the sugar gradually until very stiff peaks form.


Remove one cake slice from freezer and place on cookie sheet.  Remove one ice cream slice and place on frozen cake slice. Mound meringue over ice cream/cake slice, spreading to cover crack between cookie sheet and cake to seal ice cream/cake completely. Bake in middle of oven until meringue has golden brown peaks, about 5-10 minutes. Slice and serve immediately.


*Because egg whites in this recipe would not be fully cooked, we are using powdered egg whites.  Liquid pasteurized egg whites do not whip.