Image Credit: otherthings on Flickr
This is part of an 11-session series for 11-14 year olds, teaching our mission statement and the importance of it’s values:
We exist to learn to follow Jesus, to show honour to God, to use our gifts to serve, to support each other, and to share our faith.
Session Aim: To understand what serving is and why it is important.
Activity: The Great Giveaway
Shuffle a pack of cards and place them face down in the middle of the group, then hand out 15 sweets to each person (use a tin of Roses, Celebrations or something similar). Explain that each person must take it in turns to pick up a card. Whatever the number on the card, they must give away that amount of sweets to one person of their choice (e.g. picking up a seven of clubs means 7 sweets must be handed to someone else). Aces are low and Jack, Queen and King count as 11, 12 and 13 respectively. It is totally up to the individual who they give the sweets to and why. The game ends when someone loses all their sweets or when everyone has had a few turns each. Do not tell them until the end, but the aim of the game is to be left with as few sweets as possible.
Talk about who got the most and least sweets. Why was that? Who was most generous? Who was least?
Read: James 2:14-18
My brothers and sisters, if people say they have faith, but do nothing, their faith is worth nothing. Can faith like that save them? A brother or sister in Christ might need clothes or food. If you say to that person, Ã¢â‚¬Å“God be with you! I hope you stay warm and get plenty to eat,Ã¢â‚¬Â but you do not give what that person needs, your words are worth nothing. In the same way, faith that is aloneÃ¢â‚¬â€that does nothingÃ¢â‚¬â€is dead.
Illustration: Practical Example
This will require much thought and preparation in advance, but will have a significant impact. Over the previous weeks you will have got to know your group quite well, this is your chance to show them what serving is by doing something specifically for them. Much as Jesus washed his disciplesÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ feet, you should do something practical for them. It could be making drinks or praying for them, it could be offering to go shopping with someone and buying a Bible study guide for another. You know your group best so find something personal for them that requires some effort on your part. Explain why putting others first is important (Ã¢â‚¬Å“love your neighbour as you love yourselfÃ¢â‚¬Â Matthew 22:39)
- James says that if we donÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t do anything to help others, our faith is dead. Do you agree?
- Do you think serving others is important for a Christian?
- Do you think that you do any serving? If yes, then what?
- Ask God to help you see some of the problems around you so that you can help others.
- Pray for any issues affecting the group this week.
Try to think of something useful or helpful you could do to serve someone else, and make it happen this week. Come back next week and tell us what you did.
Further Reading: Philippians 2:3-4
When you do things, do not let selfishness or pride be your guide. Instead, be humble and give more honour to others than to yourselves. Do not be interested only in your own life, but be interested in the lives of others.