PREP VIDEO

Use the video below to help you better prepare for this week’s Huddle.

ANNOUNCEMENT VIDEO

Play this video for your Huddle.  *You can view this on the Heights Students YouTube or Vimeo channels through designated Apple TV’s. 

 

EXTRA STUDY MATERIALS

What we want students to learn: That no matter how much stuff we have, or want, it doesn’t add any real meaning to our life.

What we want students to do with what they’ve learned: To accept the challenge to see what stuff they can do without and consider donating it to someone who is needy.

Scripture Focus: Luke 12:13-21

Overview: This is an interesting lesson, and maybe a bold one. You’re going to build off a key phrase in Jesus’ words from Luke 12: “a man’s life does not consist in the abundance of his possessions.” You’re going to help your students understand exactly what this phrase means, but then you’re going to take it a step further. You’re going to challenge your students to consider parting with some of their stuff as a reflection of their internalization of this truth. You’ll have the chance, if you choose, to encourage students to work with their parent(s) to donate some of their stuff to charity, maybe even one your church sponsors. In this way, you’ll be providing them with a practical way to live out Jesus’ teachings on our stuff.

The Setting

There’s a lot going on leading up to Luke 12. In Luke 10 Jesus sends out his disciples and tells the parable of the Good Samaritan. In Luke 11 Jesus teaches His disciples the Lord’s Prayer, and has his “woe to you” confrontation with the Pharisees. By the time we see Jesus in Luke 12, we find Him teaching His disciples amidst a larger crowd. Though the crowd would no doubt hear what Jesus was saying, Luke tells us that the teaching was primarily for His disciples.

The Main Point

The heart of this lesson is found in verse 15, and could really be seen as the key verse for this entire four-lesson study. It’s pretty straightforward, as Jesus often was: “Be on your guard against all kinds of greed; a man’s life does not consist in the abundance of his possessions.” Greed is the nearly insatiable drive for more. It’s a gnawing in your stomach that makes a person completely unsatisfied with what he or she has, and drives him or her to acquire more. But Jesus knows where this ends. No amount of stuff can make us happy. Only a life focused on Christ and His Kingdom results in true joy.

OPENING ACTIVITY

FIRST, remind students that this is the last lesson in Jesus and Stuff, and in this lesson you’ll be looking at one final truth about how we think about our possessions. But first, you want to show a video that demonstrates the principle you’ll be discussing today.

NEXT, at the beginning of the lesson intro video (see below), there is a 3-4 minute video that will introduce the opening activity. When you’ve finished, lead them in a brief discussion. Ask something like:

  • What do you think of this video? What thoughts come to mind?
    • Answers will vary.
  • As people receive the money, how did you find yourself feeling?
    • Answers will vary.
  • The guy alludes to the fact at the beginning of the video that he is probably financially well off. Does this change the nature of what he is doing? Explain your answer.
    • Answers will vary, but lead students to see that while giving away $100 to people might not be a huge sacrifice, it does demonstrate generosity on the part of the young man. After all, he could keep the money for himself.

FINALLY, transition to the Main Event by saying something like this:

  • Does giving someone $100 change their lives? No. No it doesn’t. It won’t get any of those people off the street. But, it made all of them feel special. It brought joy into what may have been a pretty crummy day otherwise. All because one guy decided to be generous with what he had been given. He could have kept the money for himself. No one made him give it away. But because he was generous, he gave. This lesson will see Jesus commanding us to do the same thing: to see our stuff as resources to be freely given up to be used as God sees fit. Let’s jump right in and see exactly what Jesus said.

CONTENT VIDEO

Play this video for your Huddle. *You can view this on the Heights Students YouTube or Vimeo channels through designated Apple TV’s. 

LEAD

  • Look back at verses 41. First off, did Jesus condemn the rich people for putting in large amounts?
    • Answer: No.
  • Were the rich people generous?
    • Answer: Yes. Seemingly so.
  • Do you think the Temple was able to put the money from the rich people to good use?
    • Answer: Yes. Most likely.
  • In verse 43, Jesus makes His point clear. What does He mean? How did the woman put in more money than the rich people?
    • Answer: She gave a higher percentage of her overall money than the rich did. While they gave more money, she gave more of her total money.
  • Jesus pulls back the curtain even more in verse 44. What did He say made the woman’s gift so remarkable?
    • Answer: She was poor. And so her two copper coins were incredibly valuable to her. In fact, they were some of her last coins.

NEXT, explain to students that this shows two very powerful truths about the woman, two truths that we’ll use to apply to our own lives and how we look at our stuff.

  • What truths did this woman have to believe to be able to give away her last few coins to God?
    • Answer: She had to trust in God’s ability to provide for her and take care of her. She had to believe that her stuff wasn’t hers at all, but God’s.
  • How did she demonstrate she viewed her stuff (in this case her money) as not truly hers at all, but God’s that He had entrusted to her?
    • Answer: No one could give their last bit of money to the church (in this case the Temple) if they did not see it as God’s to begin with. After all, she could have withheld the Temple tax. But she was faithful and godly and she did what she knew was right by God’s law.
  • How did she demonstrate complete faith in God to meet her needs?
    • Answer: She gave the last of her money she had to live on. This requires a tremendous amount of faith in God to provide for her. As a widow in the 1st Century, she would have had zero means to provide for herself. She would be at the mercy of other Christians and of the Temple to provide for her. This shows a great deal of faith in God to meet her needs.

NEXT, bring it around to begin applying this truth in their lives. Ask:

  • What are some examples of how you all as 21st century teenagers can see your stuff as God’s and not yours? What does this look like lived out?
    • Answers will vary, but challenge them to be practical with their responses.
  • When we place too much value or importance on our stuff, how does this show a lack of faith in God and His ability to provide for us?
    • Answers will vary.
  • How can you learn to show more faith in God as it pertains to your attitude toward your stuff?
    • Answers will vary.
  • How do you think God wants to use you and your stuff for the sake of His Kingdom?
    • Answers will vary. But wrap it all up by saying that God has given to us generously and freely through Jesus. Our only right response to this is to give back to God, generously and freely, remembering that all the stuff we have is a gift from Him anyways. He wants to use us and our stuff to show the world around us a clear picture of His character.

If there are no further questions or comments, transition to the Last Word.

CLOSE

BEGIN by explaining to students that this is your last lesson where you’ll be looking at how they view their stuff in light of their relationship with Jesus. Ask them to think through all that God has taught them about their attitude towards their stuff. We’re going to finish up this study by taking some time to ask God to help us live differently in light of all we’ve learned.

We’re going to spend a few minutes in prayer, asking God to reveal any changes we need to make regarding our attitude toward our stuff. Lead them to ask God to give them the strength to do the right thing. Encourage them to pray for God to use their new attitude concerning their stuff to grow His Kingdom.

FINALLY, once students have had a chance to pray, close with your own prayer for them.