David C Cook COVID-19 Response

High School

A Solid Foundation

Lesson 9 

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Spring 2022

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By: RLD Editorial Team 

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May 15, 2022

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Lesson Focus:

God call us to integrity in moral situations.

Bible Basis:

Genesis 39:1-10

Materials Needed:

Step 1:

  • Internet access
  • Whiteboard and marker

Summary & Links:

Students will consider what it means to have a foundation of integrity after watching a short video about how buildings are engineered to withstand earthquakes.

Memory Verse:

Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others.
—Philippians 2:3-4

Step 1:

Students will consider what it means to have a foundation of integrity after watching a short video about how buildings are engineered to withstand earthquakes

Materials Needed:

  • Internet access
  • Whiteboard and marker

Earthquakes can have devastating effects when they hit unexpectedly. In regions where buildings have not been engineered to stand up to strong quakes, they are the most susceptible to major destruction and high death tolls. Have you ever wondered what it takes to create a building with structural integrity? It can be extremely costly for engineers to design an earthquake-resistant building, and even then, there is no guarantee that the structure will stand against the test of a powerful earthquake. Let’s watch this video about the methods used to prevent the collapse of buildings during an earthquake.

Share this video with your students [6:35; stop at 2:50 (if time allows, you can watch the whole video)]:
The Future of Earthquake-Proof Buildings

  • What does it mean to have structural integrity? (The ability of a structure to withstand stress without breaking.)
  • Why is the foundation of the building so important? (A base that is specifically designed to hold up to a stressful load prevents the building from collapsing under the pressure.)

Having integrity in our own lives is very similar to a building that has structural integrity and the ability to withstand an earthquake. A building is engineered with a foundation for stability to hold up against pressure; and in our own lives, we face crumbling under stress or pressure if our foundation isn’t secure.

  • What kind of pressures do you face on a daily basis that are difficult to withstand? (Answers will vary but might include peer pressure, pressure to perform well in an area such as grades, discord at home, sexual purity, etc. As your teens respond, record their answers on the whiteboard.)

In the same way that engineers might build a shield around the base of a building, we can set boundaries for ourselves that will prevent us from experiencing destruction. Let’s find out how.

Looking for Steps 2, 3 & 4?

You can find Steps 2 and 3 in your teacher’s guide. To purchase a teacher’s guide, please visit: Bible-in-Life or Echoes.

Step 4:

Materials Needed:

  • Paper
  • Pens/pencils
  • Whiteboard and marker (or screenshared document)

If your class is meeting online, invite students to bring paper and pens/pencils with them to class.

God calls us to live with integrity in all situations. We are often faced with situations where we must choose between doing what is right and doing what we desire. First, let’s think about what it means to be a person of integrity.

As a group, ask students to list (out loud) the characteristics of a person who has integrity. Next, ask them to list some situations in which Christians might have to choose to uphold God’s moral principles and forsake their own desires. Remind your students of some of the things they listed earlier in Step 1. As students share those items, record them on the whiteboard or screenshared document.

Being a person of integrity means being honest and holding ourselves to a higher standard of moral principles. It also means doing what is best for others rather than seeking personal gain. When we neglect to live with integrity, we can see the consequences in our own lives and in the lives of those around us who are affected by our decisions. Let’s consider the consequences of our decisions in moral situations.

Have students break up into small groups and give each student a pen/pencil and a piece of paper (or invite them to have those items ready at home). Ask the following questions and allow the students to discuss responses within their group. Have each student write down their personal answer on the piece of paper. Ask a few students to share their personal answers with the larger group.

  • When have you had to choose between the interests of others and your own interest? What did you do? (Answers will vary.) 
  • What happens when you choose integrity over personal gain? (We show love to others; we honor God; we gain trust; we set a good example; we save ourselves from pain; we save others from pain; we help others.)
  • What happens when you choose personal gain over integrity? (We lose others’ respect and trust; we bring pain and destruction to our lives and the lives of others; we get into bad situations or attract the wrong people; we set a poor example.)
  • In what ways can you demonstrate integrity? (By being honest; by making choices that honor God; by doing what we say we will do; by keeping promises; by being disciplined; by being loyal.)

It is important for us to think ahead about the choices we will make when faced with moral decisions so that we are prepared to maintain our integrity. When we evaluate the consequences of putting our own needs above the needs of others, we see that bad choices often lead to destruction around us. But when we choose integrity, we not only honor God but we also honor others.

Ask your teens to think of one way they currently struggle to maintain integrity in their lives. Based on what they’ve learned today, urge them to pinpoint something they can do daily to strengthen their foundation in order to withstand the pressure. Once they have had time to identify the struggle and foundation preparation needed, challenge them to follow through every day this week.

Close in prayer asking God to give students the strength they need to make the difficult choice to be obedient and have integrity in every situation. Ask His Spirit to indwell them and provide direction when faced with difficult moral dilemmas. Remind teens that God will always empower them and provide the option to make the right choice in every situation because of their faith in Him.

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