Main Point of Discussion: Draw in students for fun and involve them in small groups for an easy discussion on achieving goals—leading up to the ultimate goal for believers in Christ, being sold out for Jesus and meeting him one day.
Discussion Starters (Games!)
- Earth Ball/Cage Ball (a six-foot blow-up ball; see bottom of discussion for more details)
- A Shop Vac (to fill it)
- Dodge balls (for back up)
- Basketball court
- Small group questions
Staff hold earth ball in air until start—use 2 staffers as refs! Students try to push/hit earth ball to backboard or rim. Send kids to “penalty bleachers” for 60 seconds if they grab the earth ball or kick it.
Earth Crab Soccer
Same deal as Earth B-Ball, but students are in “crab position” and try to kick the ball to backboard or rim (with a staffer on each sideline, knocking the ball back into play). Send kids to “penalty bleachers” for 60 seconds if they stand up or sit up at all!
Steal the Earth
Line each team on sidelines; number each player. Call numbers, and students try to push/hit ball to designated open wall. Staff person must hold earth ball in air after number is called until students reach it.
If you have time left, play dodge ball!
I hope you noticed while playing these funny games that achieving a goal isn’t always an easy thing—and sure isn’t something that automatically happens! We have to set goals, plan ahead and figure out the best ways to achieve our goals…then do the work. Not easy. It’s the same thing with our spiritual life—we live better spiritually when we set spiritual goals for ourselves. Let’s talk a bit more about that in our small groups…
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, let’s all go around and share your name and favorite fast food place.
- AROUND THE CIRCLE: Okay, now everyone share one thing you really enjoy doing.
- AROUND THE CIRCLE: Now, everyone share one life goal.
- AROUND THE CIRCLE: Now, everyone share one thing you’re doing to make it possible for you to achieve that goal.
Read This Passage from the Bible:
13 Brothers and sisters, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, 14 I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.
Have a staff member give their testimony and relate it to achieving goals.
Close in Prayer
“Appendix” — Where You Can Find the “Earth Ball”
Sometimes they’re called CAGE BALLS. The following are some places on the Web that sell them — look for the 72” cage ball with the cover. Sometimes covers are sold separately. (I’ve never purchased from these places—purchase at your own risk.)
Shape Up Shop:
Jonathan McKee is the author of over twenty books including the brand new The Bullying Breakthrough; The Teen’s Guide to Social Media & Mobile Devices; If I Had a Parenting Do Over; and the Amazon Best Seller - The Guy's Guide to God, Girls and the Phone in Your Pocket. He speaks to parents and leaders worldwide, all while providing free resources for youth workers on TheSource4YM.com. Jonathan, his wife Lori, and their three kids live in California.