church, community, fellowship

Age Group: high school, college

Key Texts: Col. 3:12-14; Matt. 12:49, 50; Rom. 12:4 -10

Introduction:
The redwoods grow to be over 300 feet tall. They never stand alone because the southern winds can whip them down. The redwoods stick together. They grow in clusters, supporting one another. Water is hard to find in the rocky mountains. The redwoods must quickly drink the water at the soil surface before the water evaporates into the hot air. So they creep just beneath forest floor, quenching their thirst, and creating a bumpy terrain that is not much of an anchor (big trees need roots that dig deep into the earth). However, a closer look reveals their strategy–The roots of one tree intertwine with the roots of other trees. That’s how they stand tall even when their roots cannot dig deep

Activity:
Option 1: Dump a pile of children’s building blocks on the table or floor. Ask for two volunteers to compete in building the tallest building in 90 seconds. When you have your volunteers, let them know they will be blindfolded, and may only use one hand. Divide the rest of the class into two sides to cheer and shout instructions. (Illustrates how easy it is to break a family/how difficult it is to build one and the importance having the needed elements to make a family work.)

Option 2: Ask for a few brief positive, personal stories about family bonding. Create slogans that describe some of the families represented in the class. Keep it sensitive, positive, and fun.

Study:
Option 1: The dynamics of a human family unit are parallel to that of the church family. Have you been in a church where you were a stranger yet you felt very comfortable? Have you attended a church for years yet continued to feel a stranger? What made one a home where the Lord and His brothers and sisters got together? What made the other a spiritual clinic lacking warmth and fellowship?

Read Colossians 3:12 -14.Find the key ingredients needed to make the church a true family of God. (compassion; kindness; humility; gentleness; patience; forgiveness; love)

Write the ingredients on the chalkboard. On a scale of 1 to 10 (10 being very good), rate your home church on each ingredient. Emphasize the importance of being honest about ourselves.

Option 2:
What do the following biblical passages teach you about the family? What does each Bible passage teach about the family? What change should be made in your homes to better conform to each biblical principle?

  • Exodus 20:12
  • Proverbs 10:1
  • Proverbs 13:1
  • Proverbs 15:5
  • Matthew 10:37
  • Matthew 18:6,7
  • Romans 1:28 -30
  • 1 Cor. 13:4 -7, 13
  • Ephesians 6:1 -4
  • 1 Timothy 5:8

Conclusion:


Brainstorm for specific ways your class can enhance their church family (visit  thesick/discouraged; offer services to the elderly/disabled; begin a new tradition [e.g a quarterly praise potluck where members share recent experiences of God goodness]). Take a few minutes to organize planning groups and dates.

Appoint two students with the gift of organizational skills to follow through and make it happen.

Discussion:

 

  • How do God’s general instructions for families help you in your personal growth towards Christian maturity?
  • How can you carry over the positive attitude of family to your work place?
  • Why is an environment of encouragement important in your personal family as well as your church family?
  • What does it mean to call God your Father?
  • Does being created in God’s image affect the standards we set for ourselves?
  • Why is communication important between family members. How can bad communication be destructive?
  • What is the role of the Holy Spirit within the church family?

 

 

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