Love God/Love Others Matt 22: 37-39, John 14: 15 Life Purpose Statement John 15

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13 Things

  1. Love God/Love Others Matt 22:37-39, John 14:15

  2. Life Purpose Statement John 15

  3. Run to Jesus in Dependence John 7:37-38

  4. Serve Others/Deny Self/Give Your Life Away Matt 16:24-25

  5. The Gospel Rom 3:22-25a

  6. Be Incarnational John 1:14,18

  7. Remember Him Every 15 Minutes Phil 4

  8. Make Others Look Good

  9. From the Proper Motive, Ask God for Wisdom James 1:5

  10. Contentment and Thankfulness 1 Tim 6:6-8

  11. Be Shrewd as a Snake and Innocent as a Dove Matt 10:16

  12. Be Disciplined Phil 2:12-13

  13. Live Out Your Convictions

13 Great Things

What is it?

This is an opportunity to teach kids doctrinal and practical truth in a way that should become a part of their lives. Attached is a sheet of “things”--one for each kid that can be laminated and kept in their wallet, purse, or bible.

How a typical campaigner session might work.

  1. Use and ice breaker. You might get each kids to reveal their best and worst experience of the past week, tell about their family unit, or hopes for the next season of life.

  2. Then, go over a new “thing”. Get them to explain the verses—gently correct where necessary.

  3. Then, on subsequent weeks, have a different kid recite and explain all of the things you have already covered. Use the verses each time.

  4. End with a time where you ask, “What can we be praying for you and your friends about?” Over time they will begin to share their lives and put into practice these 13 things.

  5. Finally, encourage them each to have time in Word, community, and prayer each week.

The 13 Great Things

  1. Love God/Love others. Matt 22:37-39; Jn 14:15; Matt 6:33. This is Jesus' answer to the question, “Which is the greatest commandment?”, so it must be important. Augustine said, “Love God with all your heart and do anything you want”. If we love God, we'll do what He says—we'll obey Him. Loving God means seeking first His kingdom (His ministry in the world becomes our ministry to those around us) and His righteousness (His work in our lives, walking with Him).

  2. Live Purpose Statement. This is from the book The Man in the Mirror:

Developing a written Purpose Statement

Use this worksheet as a guide to help you discover God's personal purpose for your life. Your reward will be a sense of destiny about your life. Follow these practical steps:

A. As God, in prayer, to reveal your personal, earthly purpose to you. Read Psalm 32:8 and claim it as a promise that He will answer.

B. Search the Scriptures for verses which capture your sense of God's purpose for your earthly life—record verses that give a special sense of meaning and purpose, picking out verses that are big enough to last a lifetime. Here are some to begin with: Joshua 24:15; Proverbs 3:5-6; Matthew 6:33; 22:37-40; 28:19-20; John 4:34; 15:1-9, 15; 17:4; Acts 20:24; I Corinthians 10:31; Ephesians 2:10; Philippians 3:10; Proverbs 30:7-9; Mica 6:8; Acts 1:8; Ecclestiastes 12:13.

C. Go slowly, and wait for God to reveal Himself. Be patient, it may take some time.

D. Once you find a verse that you believe expresses God's earthly purpose for you, rephrase it in your own words. Write a draft Written Life Purpose Statement:

Once you are satisfied with it, put it with a date in the front of your Bible.

      1. Run to Jesus in Dependence John 7:37-38

These verses take place on the last day of the Feast of Tabernacles, one of the rituals of this feast ws when a priest filled a gold pitcher with water while the choir sang Is 12:3: “With joy you will draw water from the wells of salvation”. Please note that “salvation” can mean several things—two worth mentioning here:

        1. Justification—this is when we first put our faith in Jesus as Savior. In it, God forgives us, removes the guilt for our sins, and makes us righteous (perfect) in His sight.

        2. The other way to salvation is used is called santification. This is God's work of continuing to make us more like Jesus. As Christians, we continue to trust Him and repent of known sin, both outward, open sin, as well as inner, motive sins.

Generally speaking, in John 7:37-38 both usages are indicated, but if we are discipling Christians, then this is how we should use it: Run to Jesus in dependence—when we feel our thirst (there were feasting for days in the passage, so Jesus must be talking about spiritual thirst. Here Jesus draws from the water ritual based on Is 12:3. So He says, “If anyone is thirsty”--we are all thirsty (our sin and life in general cause this) and we try all types of things to quench our thirst—things, people, our emotions. We use these and many other things to take the place of doing appropiate things and depending on Jesus when we encounter our sin or difficulties of life. In reality, wheat we are supposed to do when we come up against ourselves and the world is to run to Jesus--”if anyone is thirsty, let hi com eto me and drink.” We should not run to things, or negative emotions, or people alone to make us feel better. Rather, we should run as Larry Crabb says, “Entrust the care of our threatened soul to Christ”.

Note: Most of this stuff is background and should be explained to kids briefly in their language. The main deal is that they get to know this: Instead of trusting in anything else—I should dow what is appropiate and run to Jesus and trust Him in the problems of life.

4. Serve others/Deny self/give your life away Matthew 16:24-25; Mk 10:42-45

St Francis said “Preach the gospel all the time, and when necessary use words.” We really “preach” when we serve other people. According to Matt 16:25, if we want to find life, we must give our lives away. I believe the best channel for giving our lives away is in serving others. I like this idea: everything between building a bridge of friendship to eventually cross with the Gospel to taking the trash out without being told is serving. As we get involved in serving others, we put ourselves in an environment where we lose our lives, just as Jesus served us by actually losing His life for us. In this it is imperative that we many times deny ourselves what we want so we might give ourselves to others by serving.

      1. The Gospel I Cor 15:1,3-4/How to become a Christian Romans 3:22-25a; John 1:12

The Gospel is the Death, Burial, and Resurrection of Jesus christ for our sins. The way to become a Christian is to be bothered by the fact that I am guilty and things are not OK between me and God enough to receive Jesus as the One who paid the penalty for our sins by His death, burial, and resurrection.

When God sees our faith in Jesus, He forgives us and makes us perfiect in His sight (justification). Even though we may understand it all, God is waiting to give us the gift of forgiveness when He sees our faith in Jesus' death.

Note: Kids need to know that Jesus does meet lots of needs in our lives, but the greatest is our need for God's forgiveness. This is based entirely on our faith in Jesus' work on the cross for us—not in just “accepting Christ” or “asking Jesus in our heart” maybe because we are in a bind and think that getting religious will help.

      1. Be incarnational John 1:14,18; 20:21

Just a Jesus came to us and became like us without sin, so should we go to our spiritually disinterested friends and get involved with them, without getting involved in their sin. As we go we must be full of grace and truth.

Note: Most people are only full of truth—they lack the grace it takes to get involved with non-Christians. In doing this, we get a chance to show people what God is like in a human being.

This idea of going to their non-Christian friends is a real catalyst for kids. It gives them ta purpose or reason for being a Christian. It is definitely a form of Great Thing #4—serving others. Lastly, Jesus sends us out to copy his pattern of reaching lost people.

So, earn the right to be heard by unconditionally loving people. Remember, people don't care how much you know until they know how much you care. And, there is no impact without contact.

      1. Remember Him every 15 minutes

Most kids, even those who have a “quiet time” rarely think of Jesus during their day. This 15-minute-thing is merely a goal to help us thing about or go to Him in worship during the day. Maybe every time they hear a bell at school, or just before the end of class, or maybe actually every 15 minutes, stop and mentally check in with the Lord. I find it best for me to focus on and adore Him.

      1. Make others look good

Another way to serve people relationally is to not take all the credit for something; every time credit is given, spread out the compliment or credit—make sure you accept it yourself if it is due. But also do your best to shift some of it over to a friend. It is very encouraging and we all need that.

      1. From the proper motive, ask God for wisdom Ja 1:5; 4:3

If we ask God for wisdom to lie and we ask from the motive of humility and of putting His kingdom first, then he will give it. He really will.

      1. Contentment and Thankfulness Phil 4:11-13; 1 Tim 6:6-8; 1 Thes 5:18; Ro 8:28

Contentment is satisfaction with our situation. Of course, this doesn't mean that we are indifferent to opression, iinjustice, or evil around us. Nor is it a toleration of our outward or inward sin in our lives. What it is is this: It is acceptance of God's work in and around our lives in relation to the station in life, job, or position He's given us as well as our resources (money and material things). It is thus a settled disposition to accept God's gifts as sufficient. It is acceptance of one's lot in life.

Thankfulness is expressing thanks in workds and thoughts toward God in every situation on the basis that we know that God workds all things together for good.... The fact that God does this and the fact that we know and turst in Him makes a huge difference in our response to circumstances. A good test ground for this is developing an attitude of thankfulness in our homes. Say “thank you” a lot.

      1. Be shrewd as a snake and innocent as a dove Mt 10:16; Phil 2:15b; Ro 16:19b

We are to be innocet (pure) with regard to evil. In Greek, the word for innocent was used of wine that was not diluted and of metal that was not weakened in any way.

The point is this: We are to understand evil and see how our friends are deceived by it, but we are not to be involved in it. We are to know the truth so well that we can see error coming and avoid it ourselves, plus help our friends.

      1. Be disciplined Phil 2:12-13; Prov 24:30-32; Prov 25:28

From The Power of Commitment by Jerry White. “All the talent and ability in the world are useless without the discipline to point them in the right direction. Someone has said that discipline is refining fire for which talent becomes ability.” “Copmmitment without discipline is like luxurious car without gasoline; it looks great, but is's going nowhere. Sincere and earnest commitments are useless without the discipline to carry them out.” Discipline is the ability to say 'no' to what is sin, to say 'yes' to what is right, and to say 'I will' to what ought to be done.” “Discipline is endurnce, self-control, training to do wht God wants us to do instead of always what we want. This means that spending time with God very regularaly, and laying aside those things that hold us back from following Him.”

I have helped a lot by simply working hard at discipling myself to do a little of all things I know God desires me to do. Because I have done this in building my relationship with God, I can branch out as I get a spouse and kids and discipline myself to be with and build a relationionship with them.

      1. Live out your convictions

We must all individually decide what we really believe about what the Bible says. We must decide how we should live in th elight of what Scriptures say about life. It is our decision—we learn from others, but it is we who must ultimately decide how we live and for what we live. It is for these decisions and our actions based on these decisions that God will hold us responsible. The poinis this: Figure out what you really believe and live by it with all you have. Stand up for what you believe God is saying to you.

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