Main Point: If we want to really know ourselves, we must be willing to take a hard, long look inside to see who we truly are.
Discussion Starter: What Will You Do for $5?
Granted, this one might get a little expensive, but it’s worth it. Grab a few 5 dollar bills and a few simple supplies so you can give your students an opportunity to find out who they really are.
Say, “OK, I need 5 student volunteers up front right now. I’ve got $5 to give each of you…if you’re willing.” After getting the students up front, show them the money and then ask them if they want it. They’ll definitely say “yes!” Then tell them they have to do one of the following:
- sing the National Anthem (correctly)
sniff someone’s shoe
receive 2 wet willies
eat spinach baby food
eat a sardine
drink prune juice
(Pick your own. You get the point.)
OPTIONAL: Funny videos
This isn’t necessary at all, but to help set up your discussion starter, you could play a few funny videos from the past before going into your challenge.
- What would you do for a Klondike Bar? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jwpBNEg7wgE
- What would you do for a Klondike Bar: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ctyQ9TXLEkQ
OK, that was a lot of fun. Truth be told, some of those guys might have said “no” if they were asked earlier today if they would eat a sardine and eat spinach, or volunteer for dual wet willies, or chug down prune juice. They might not have thought they had it in them. In other words, they might not have known themselves as good then as they do now. How well do you know yourself? What’s inside you? Have you taken a look inside your heart to see who you really are? If you haven’t we’re gonna give you the opportunity to do so now.
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 CIRLCE: As we get started, let’s all take a second to share our names and what we’d have to get paid to put someone else’s dirty sock in our mouth.
- ASK A FEW: Do you think those students knew they had that in them?
- ASK A FEW: How well do you think most people know themselves?
- ASK A FEW: How well do you think you know yourself?
- ASK A FEW: Are you willing to take a long, hard look inside yourself…even if you don’t like what you find?
Read the following passage:
Psalm 139:13-24 (NIV)
13 For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. 14 I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well. 15 My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place. When I was woven together in the depths of the earth, 16 your eyes saw my unformed body. All the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be. 17 How precious to me are your thoughts, O God! How vast is the sum of them! 18 Were I to count them, they would outnumber the grains of sand. When I awake, I am still with you. 19 If only you would slay the wicked, O God! Away from me, you bloodthirsty men! 20 They speak of you with evil intent; your adversaries misuse your name. 21 Do I not hate those who hate you, O LORD, and abhor those who rise up against you? 22 I have nothing but hatred for them; I count them my enemies. 23 Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. 24 See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.
A few of us learned what we’re willing to do for $5. Hopefully all of us found out who we are.
It’s never easy to take long, hard looks inside our hearts. There’s so much there…good and bad. There’s usually a lot to be upset and ashamed of, too. But, we must do what David did and take a long, hard look at ourselves to see who we truly are.
I want to give you a few private minutes to do just that. We’re gonna play some worshipful music, and we’re gonna pass out the lyrics of a song that was written just for you. Yes, we actually have a song that was written for every single one of you, personally. That song is actually Psalm 139, the psalm that we read a little from, earlier.
(Pass out copies of Psalm 139 and give students a few minutes to read it over. Then, when everyone has finished reading, ask them to ponder these questions:
- Why do you think God knows us so well?
- Why is it so difficult to get away from God?
- What does God find in your heart?
- What changes need to take place in your heart?
- What new direction do you need to let God lead you in?
After you’re done with these questions, invite them to hang around and talk with a leader if need be.)
Close in Prayer
Original idea from a YFC JV newsletter
Written by David R Smith
Jonathan McKee is the author of over twenty books including the brand new The Guy's Guide to FOUR BATTLES Every Young Man Must Face; 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.