Main Point of Discussion:
The increase of violence – especially among girls – further shows the fact that we all have sin natures that tempt us to do unimaginable things. As Christians, we are called to overcome our sinful natures and be peacemakers.
Report on Teen Girl Violence by CBS
Flip cams, cell phones, and video recorders of all sorts and sizes have zoomed in on a hot new trend among teenagers: fighting.
Fighting among boys is nothing new, but these fights happen between girls, and sometimes between an entire group! As girls go at each other with an unparalleled viciousness, groups gather round to watch, and somebody always flips out a cell phone to record all the action…to post on YouTube later. That guarantees an even bigger crowd.
By visiting www.YouTube.com
and searching for “girl fighting,” over 46,000 entries are returned. According to some, there have been an estimated 8,000,000 viewings of these online, female face offs. This is a very dangerous new trend.
Introducing the Clip:
Any of you who are familiar with YouTube have noticed an increasingly frequent occurrence on the popular online video website: fights among girls.
If you visit YouTube, you’ve no doubt seen the fights I’m talking about. Two or more girls are going at it, swinging violently at one another until the other drops from fatigue or pain. Right now, there are over 46,000 different female fights currently posted on YouTube, and they’ve been viewed collectively almost 8,000,000 times!
Some of you may have even seen these fights in person at your school, at the local hangouts, or maybe even your neighborhood. Let’s take a look at this trend of violence and hear what some experts have to say about it.
The Video Clip:
An article and accompanying video can be found at this URL:
I’m not sure what is more troublesome- the fact that girls are turning to violence, or that there is an interest in filming and watching the fights. What is obvious, though, is that we are all predisposed to violence and anger, and when left unchecked it can lead to terrible consequences. So the question is – how should we as Christians respond?
Divide into Small Groups:
Let’s go ahead and split up into our discussion groups, and then afterward we’ll come back together for a final word.
CLICK HERE for a quick training article on how to maximize your small groups using our small group format—a great resource to equip your small group leaders.
- AROUND THE CIRCLE: Before we begin, tell everyone your name and favorite cartoon characters.
- ASK A FEW: Were any of those cartoons violent? If so, do you think that impacted your view of violence? Why or why not?
- ASK A FEW: Does it seem more “normal” for guys to fight each other, or for girls to fight each other? Why?
- ASK A FEW: How would you explain the increase in girls physically fighting each other?
- ASK A FEW: What do you think about the people who film and post the fights on the Internet?
- ASK A FEW: Do you think all of us have the potential to react in violent and physical ways? Why or why not?
- ASK A FEW: What is our responsibility as Christians in this new trend?
Read the following passage:
ASK SOMEONE: This scene is at the end of Jesus’ life when He was betrayed and arrested in the Garden of Gethsemane. Obviously His followers were scared and angry, and one of them, Peter, reacted in a fairly violent way. What would you have done when the soldiers came?
ASK A FEW: Why do you think Peter cut off the servant’s ear? (Leaders: By the way, we know it was Peter because of John 18:10.)
ASK A FEW: Do you think his sinful nature overcame his better judgment? Why or why not? (Leaders: Be prepared to explain what a sinful nature is. Basically, it’s our internal desire to do evil, seek revenge, hurt others, promote ourselves, etc. Our sinful nature is where our sin comes from.)
ASK A FEW: What was Peter trying to accomplish by reacting in violence?
ASK A FEW: What does Jesus mean when He says, “those who use the sword will die by the sword”? (Leaders: Basically, He meant that those who are violent to others should expect violence in their own lives.)
ASK A FEW: Based on Jesus’ reprimand of Peter, what would He say to people who film and post violence on the Internet?
Read the following passage:
And even as Jesus said this, Judas, one of the twelve disciples, arrived with a crowd of men armed with swords and clubs. They had been sent by the leading priests and elders of the people. The traitor, Judas, had given them a prearranged signal: “You will know which one to arrest when I greet him with a kiss.” So Judas came straight to Jesus.
“Greetings, Rabbi!” he exclaimed and gave him the kiss.
Jesus said, “My friend, go ahead and do what you have come for.”
Then the others grabbed Jesus and arrested him. But one of the men with Jesus pulled out his sword and struck the high priest’s slave, slashing off his ear.
“Put away your sword,” Jesus told him. “Those who use the sword will die by the sword.”
ASK A FEW: What is our reward for being peacemakers?
ASK A FEW: What does Jesus mean when He says we’ll be called “children of God” if we work for peace?
AROUND THE CIRCLE: What are specific ways we can help eliminate the senseless violence that’s taped and viewed on YouTube?
Tonight we talked about the increase in violence, especially among girls – and how we as Christians need to not only control our anger, but also be a peacemaker in an increasingly aggressive society. Jesus warned that if we resort to violence, there will be consequences, but He also promised that if we work for peace, there will be rewards. I’m going to give us a chance to respond to what we’ve learned tonight.
“God blesses those who work for peace, for they will be called the children of God.”
Pass out a copy of the prayer below and ask students to silently read through it. After they are finished, pray the prayer out loud as a group.
Lord, make me an instrument of your peace;
Close in Prayer
Written by Lane Palmer
where there is hatred, let me sow love;
where there is injury, pardon:
where there is doubt, faith ;
where there is despair, hope
where there is darkness, light
where there is sadness, joy
O divine Master,
grant that I may not so much seek to be consoled as to console;
to be understood, as to understand;
to be loved, as to love;
for it is in giving that we receive,
it is in pardoning that we are pardoned,
and it is in dying that we are born to Eternal Life.
(The Prayer of St. Francis)