Kick off the new school year with this four-week series to prepare students for going back to school with the goal of living for Christ. The lessons include:
- Week 1: Setting the Standard
- Week 2: You Want Me to do What?
- Week 3: Honesty is the Best Policy
- Week 4: How Long does this Commitment Last
Sample of Week 1: Setting the Standard
In this lesson, we are spending time thinking about God’s standard verses the standard of the world. How are they different? How are they similar? Does it matter whose standard we live up to? As your students go back to school they will be faced with many different opinions as to what standards they should live by.
Don’t rush through this to get the next great idea (Which I don’t have.) Spend some time thinking through the fact that God wants us to be “holy.” “But I thought that our righteousness was like filthy rags.” It is! Only through His redemption of our efforts and talents can anything we do or become be holy. Yet, how many of us still depend on our own gifts and abilities to make our youth program a success. When will we ever learn that what God has planned is so much greater than the best idea that we could ever come up with? Take some time and listen for His guidance, but to follow it as well.”
Spend the next few moments basking in God’s glory and allowing Him to reshape your program into His program.
The purpose of this lesson is to acknowledge that God has set a standard for us. To realize that everything is not up for debate. There is an absolute truth and that TRUTH is God Himself.
After hearing this lesson, the students should be able to distinguish worldly opinion from Godly truth. To realize that we have been called to do something, and then to do it.
- John 14:6
- Matthew 28:19
When it comes down to it there are really two standards to live by. God’s way or the world’s way. As students you will have to decide which on you will allow to shape your life. For a decision of this magnitude it would be wise for you to consider each way before you decide.
The World’s Standard is broad and plenty
How long is a ruler? Imagine that we were all given the privilege to decide how long our rulers would be. No more “twelve inches” in a foot. One foot could be three inches long, while another would be eight and a half. That would be complete confusion. What if someone had the power to come along and say, “Whatever feels like a foot is a foot.”
Is that not exactly what the world says about right and wrong about the standards you should live by? “If it feels good, do it.” “Christ may be right for you, but not for me.” “I pray to god too. My god’s name is Allah.” “Truth is relative to how you feel.” Ultimately that leads to confusion!
When it comes to setting standards it is import to have an anchor to secure you life choices to.
God’s Standard is One Way
There is one absolute TRUTH! Jesus says, “I am the way, and the TRUTH and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” No ifs, ands, or buts about it. Notice that Jesus didn’t say, “I am a way, and a truth and a life…” No! He blatantly says “THE way, and THE TRUTH and THE life…” Absolute truth.
With God there is only one way and while that may seem narrow (which it is) and unattractive, you never have to second-guess with God. With His one way comes the security that He will never leave you nor forsake you.
“Keep your lives free from the love of money (one of the world’s standards to live by) and be content with what you have, because God has said, "Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you”. Hebrews 13:5
The World’s Standard feels good...for now
One of the biggest, most compelling aspect of the world’s standard is it’s ability to bring instant gratification. Feel good now is its motto. Don’t worry about tomorrow live for this moment, do what’s best now. The problem with that is “now” always changes...it’s never enough. A lot of time we make decisions for the now with no regard for the consequences that may come later.
Read John 4:13-14...the world will always leave you thirsty for more
God’s Standard brings fulfillment and purpose
God created you and knows what’s best for you. If you place your trust in His hands he will shape your life with true meaning and purpose.
- Read Isaiah 55:9 –God’s way is so much better then our ways
- Read Jeremiah 29:11 -13 –If we seek Him and His way we will find true purpose for our life
The Bottom Line
Whose standard are you following? Do you follow the world’s standards, or Christ’s?
God sets a standard that is unwavering for all of us. Live up to His standard and not that of the world that surrounds you.
- Simply put, trust His Standards over the world's.
- This week look for ways where God’s standard is different from the world.
- Pray that God will give you the strength to follow his way over the world’s way.
The Follow Up
Allow students to verbally address ways that the world’s standard affects them. Whether it is in regards to their view of truth or their response to the “God’s purpose for their life”
The most important follow up is to first listen. What are the needs? What are the questions? Constantly ask the students whether or not they believe the TRUTH and are they “going”?