I am watching you
Lesson Objective: Basic values are who you are at all times
Scripture: Proverbs 15:3 The eyes of the Lord are in every place. Keeping watch on the evil and the good
There is a saying that you can fool some of the people all of the time, all of the people some of the time but you cannot fool all of the people all of the time. The fact is that you cannot fool God any of the time. When I was younger, I watched as girls who were pregnant and not married were almost always treated with disdain while the boys were never in the discussion. This occurred because it was much easier to see the girl. However, the fact is that both participated. While some actions appear to be hidden, the actions always come to light as shown by David and Bathsheba. Our basic values can be put to the test especially when we think that we are not in the light. Our actions cannot be based on whether we are in the light or in the dark. If so then we have no basic values. Remember the “I” above can be your child, other family members, co-workers or anyone else that you come in contact with but definitely the “I” is God.
Thought for the day: Act as if someone is watching and then you will never have to worry if someone is watching.
Lesson Objective: Loyalty is an admirable trait but be careful what you say
Scripture: Matthew 26: 31-35 Then Jesus said to them, “This very night you will all fall away on account of Me. For it is written:
‘I will strike the Shepherd, and the sheep of the flock will be scattered.’ after I have risen, I will go ahead of you into Galilee.” Peter said to Him, “Even if all fall away on account of You, I never will.” “Truly I tell you,” Jesus declared, “this very night, before the rooster crows, you will deny Me three times.” Peter replied, “Even if I have to die with You, I will never deny You.” And all the other disciples said the same thing.
. We often speak of Peter when it comes to denying Christ as he was the one that was most outspoken however they all denied Christ. Not one of the disciples demonstrated loyalty when Christ was on trial and met his death, Loyalty or faithfulness is never reflected by words but by action or inaction. We must be careful when we tell someone that we have their back and if they ever need anything just ask. One of the best examples in the Bible is the loyalty expressed by David and Jonathan. They both swore allegiance to each other and vowed that each would provide for each other’s family members. Upon the death of Jonathan, David bought the son of Jonathan into his house and set him at his table and provided for him. There have been times in my life when my loyalty was called into action and sometimes I did and sometimes I did not. As a basic value we cannot pick and choose when we are loyal. Unlike Peter we may not get a second chance to redeem ourselves.
Thought for the day: Can others count on you when times get rough?
Lesson Objective: To understand that saying I love you is far more easily said than shown.
Scripture: John 3:16 For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life
How many times has someone said that they loved you and your response was I love you too? Take a minute and really think what made you respond with “I love you too”. Was it because you really loved them or was it because it is an almost expected response? Love is one of the most misused words in the English language. True love is more than an attraction or a feeling. I laugh at young people who say that they love their girlfriend or boyfriend and then after one disagreement they are off to another boyfriend or girlfriend with who they also profess eternal love. Love as a basic value is demonstrated by actions. If you really love someone then that means that you sacrifice your wants and desires for the other person. Their happiness becomes more important than yours. I am not talking about unhealthy relationships where one is in an abusive relationship but where there is mutual love. There was a movie wherein at the beginning of the movie the man ate the last piece of cake and in the end, he gave the last piece of cake to the young lady and the older lady watching said: “that is love”. It was just a movie but putting others first is real love. If someone calls you at midnight and ask if you are asleep, do you say yes and tell them to call you in the morning or do you say “ I am awake so let’s talk”. You know there must be a reason that they needed to call you at midnight. The love that I am encouraging is not shown by purchasing gifts, etc but our everyday actions where we do simple actions such as holding the door open for others or smiling and saying hello. Do unto others what you would like. When love becomes a lifestyle it will be quite easy to see it and you will never have to say a word.
Thought for the day: How will you demonstrate your love today?
Lesson Objective: To understand that one of the requirements for demonstrating our professed love is by obeying
Scripture: John 14:21 Whoever has My commandments and keeps them is the one who loves Me. The one who loves Me will be loved by My Father, and I will love him and reveal Myself to him.”
Obedience and respect are two of the attributes that come with expressing good values. As a child, I was always afraid when the teacher would say “I am going to tell your grandmother”. I knew that I would be in deep trouble if the teacher talked to my grandmother because in the eyes of my grandmother the teacher was always right and was to always be obeyed. A child obeys their parents not out of fright but because of respect. While I know that cultures are different, I still am amazed at the number of children today who call their parents by their first names as well as other adults in the community. Some parents are more concerned about being a friend to their child than being a parent and gaining their respect. As a result, the children grow up lacking values that result in behavior that can be problematic. One thing that parents should recognize is that children are observing. Does the parent show respect to their parent? Does the parent obey their parent? Again children learn by our actions far more than what we say.
Thought for the day: Is it true that you get respect by giving respect through obedience?
Actions Speak Louder Than Words
Lesson Objective: To understand that our basic values will show through our actions. This week’s theme is to examine our actions to determine if they are consistent with our professed values
Scripture: Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. | Matthew 7:21
We are defined by our values, principles, or standards of behavior based on our judgment of what is important in life. What we say is not always consistent with what we do. If you want to know where your values lie look at your bank account. If you say that your family is most important to you then why is most of your money spent on other things like computer games, fancy clothes, a new car, and eating out at expensive restaurants. There is little money spent on family expenditures. How you spend your money will define who you are. Our mission and vision in life are driven by our values and the values are defined by our actions. We all have a mission in life that is formed by our basic values. The question is not whether we have spoken values but if our everyday actions demonstrate the values that we espouse.
Thought for the day: Say what you do and do what you say