Integrity - Choosing to be truthful in whatever you say and do
October 2020 • Week 4
Today's Bible story: Always on My Mind (Think on These Things) • Philippians 4:8
Monthly memory verse: "The honest person will live safely. But the one who is dishonest will be caught." Proverbs 10:9 (ICB)
Memory Verse for 2's - Pre-K: "The honest person will live safely." Proverbs 10:9a (ICB)
Life Application: Integrity-Choosing to be truthful in whatever you say and do
Suggested songs: Watchin' Over You and Who I Am
Praise & Pray: Sing along with the provided worship videos and pray. Access songs here
What you might pray: "Dear God, please help me today to have my thoughts focused on you. Help me to not think of the negative but to think of what is true. Help me today to see that my thoughts matter and to remember that you are always good. In Jesus' name I pray, amen."
Family Devotional & Discussion
What you do: Watch the complementary video together as a family and discuss today's question.
What you discuss: "What do you tend to focus on? (wait for responses) Sometimes it's easier to believe the worst or to decide that things are bad or that they'll never get better. But that's just NOT true. God is good, always. His way is best, always. And He is true, always. So if you find yourself focusing on negative, untrue things this week, or just generally having a bad attitude, ask God to help you change your thinking and [Bottom Line] focus on what's true."
Pray and bless your family
What you need: Bible
What you do: Open the Bible to Philippians 4:8. Read the verse together.
What you might pray: "God, thank You for loving us. Thank You for Your word that shows us how to follow You. Help us [Bottom Line] focus on what's true this week. That includes those things that are noble, right, and pure. Help us think about what is lovely and worthy of respect. If anything is excellent or worthy of praise, help us think about these things! Thank You that we can trust You, always. We love You, God. In Jesus' name, amen."
What you need: Thick paper, Bibles, watercolor paints, cups of water, paint brushes, crayons, art decorating supplies (anything could be used to decorate: tissue paper, glitter, sequence, stickers, etc.), scissors, glue sticks, tape. (DOWNLOAD FRAME TEMPLATE)
What you do: Give each kid a piece of paper.
- Instruct kids to open their Bibles to Philippians 4:8.
- Encourage them to illustrate the verse in any way they choose, using the supplies provided.
- They can write out the verse in crayon and decorate around it, write a few phrases from the verse, or paraphrase in their own words. Parents of younger kids can help children write on their paper.
- Encourage them to use their creativity any way they choose to capture the meaning of the verse as they illustrate it.
- As they're working, engage them in conversation about the verse, using the following questions to get you started:
- What do you think it means to "focus" on something?
- How do the things you THINK about affect how you act?
- Why would Paul tell us in Philippians to focus on what's true? How can focusing on negative or untrue things affect how we feel or act?
- Tell us about a situation this week that wasn't so awesome. How did you respond? Did you focus on the good or the bad? What happened as a result of what you chose to focus on?
- Why is it important to remember that what God says and what God does are always true?
What you say: "What we choose to focus on is SUPER important. During quarantine, if we choose to focus on all the negative things, the days seem WAY longer. But if we choose to look at the good things, the true things-that God is still in control, that time at home means more time with family-then we have a better chance of responding in a way that honors God and the people around us. That's why it's important to [Bottom Line] focus on what's true.
"So this week, to help you [Bottom Line] focus on what's true, I want you to hang your artwork in a place where you will see it every day. Remember to look for whatever is true, noble, pure, lovely, or worthy of respect. Let this artwork and the words of Philippians 4:8 remind you to [Bottom Line] focus on what's true, so that you can live with integrity this week."
What you need: Scrap paper balls (or 2 different colors of sock balls etc.) in two colors and hula hoops (or rope or sidewalk chalk etc. that you could make a big circle out of)
What you do: Arrange the hoops/rope/sidewalk chalk into a circle. You can make one circle or multiple circles depending on the size of your family.
- Guide each family member to stand inside the circle. Optional, if necessary, family members can pair up.
- Ask family members to pretend that the circles are their minds and what they think about.
- Dump all of the paper balls/sock balls into the center of the group's circle.
- Tell family that the [first color] paper/sock balls are "bad" or "yucky" thoughts and the [second color] balls are "good" or "true" thoughts.
- Tell your family that the object of the game is to keep the "bad" thoughts out of their minds and the "good" thoughts in!
- Quickly push, throw, or scoop the paper balls into the circles.
- As the family rushes to throw the "bad" thoughts out of their circles, do your best to push or throw them back inside.
- The result is a manic (and fun!) paper/sock ball fight!
What you say: "What are some real-life 'bad' thoughts that you can 'push' out of your brains? (Some groups may have a difficult time brainstorming, and that's okay. If so, give kids time to think then ask prompting questions; such as. Do you ever think, 'Nobody loves me' or 'I'll never get what I want' or 'You're mean!') Close your eyes and imagine pushing all of those thoughts out of your brain. (Pause.) Are they all gone? Good!
"Now, what are some good or true thoughts that you can think instead? (Pause. If kids are stuck, ask "Could you think, 'God loves me no matter what'; 'It will be okay'; or 'You're special to God.') Excellent ideas! Close your eyes and choose one good or true thought. [Make It Personal] (Tell kids the true or good thought that you chose, such as 'God loves me no matter what,' 'God is good,' or 'God works all things together for good to those who love Him.') Imagine taking that true thought and holding it inside your head. (Pause.) Do you have it? Good! God doesn't want us to think bad or yucky thoughts. Instead, He wants us to think about what's good and true. He wants us to think about Who He is and what He's like."
What you need: Print 2 copies of "Memory Verse Phrases" cards (DOWNLOAD HERE), Bibles, floor tape or painters tape, scissors, and beanbags or balled up socks
What you do: Open a Bible to Proverbs 10:9 and review the memory verse as a family.
- Ask a second kid to read the verse as you prepare for the game using the instructions below:
- Use the painters tape to create two, 3' x 3' squares on the floor.
- Shuffle each set of "Memory Verse Phrases" cards and lay out one set of cards in random order inside each square.
- Divide the family into two teams to line up about three feet from their team's square.
- When you say, "Go!" the first kid in each team will toss the beanbag, aiming to land on the first phrase of the verse.
- If successful, they run to grab the phrase card and hand off the beanbag to the next person in line.
- If they miss, they must retrieve the beanbag and try again.
- Each team must pay attention so they collect each phrase in the order of the verse.
- Once all phrases have been collected, the team puts the cards in verse order and sits down to signal they are finished.
- Check their work by reading the verse aloud then declare a winner.
What you say: "All month long, we've been talking about what it means to live with integrity, to choose to be truthful in all we say and do. This verse reminds us that choosing integrity keeps us on the safe, straight path. So this week, let's ask God to help us [Bottom Line] focus on what's true. Because what we choose to think about-focus on-really does affect what we DO! Let's stay off the crooked path by choosing to [Bottom Line] focus on what's true."