David C Cook COVID-19 Response

Upper Elementary

A Way Out

Lesson 9 


Spring 2021


By: RLD Editorial Team 


May 09, 2021

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Lesson Focus:

When you’re tempted, look for God’s way out.

Bible Basis:

Daniel 1

Materials Needed:

Step 1:

  • Internet access
  • Optional: Marshmallows (1 per student; be aware of food allergies)

Summary & Links:

Students will consider the temptations they face as they explore holding onto convictions and seeking God’s way out.

Memory Verse:

For the grace of God has appeared that offers salvation to all people. It teaches us to say “No” to ungodliness.
—Titus 2:11-12

Step 1:

Students will consider the temptations they face as they explore holding onto convictions and seeking God’s way out.

Materials Needed:

  • Internet access
  • Optional: Marshmallows (1 per student; be aware of food allergies)

If you opt to serve marshmallows to your class, hand them out now. You might want to have them refrain from actually eating them until the video is over.

Imagine your favorite dessert sitting on a table in front of you, practically calling your name. You’ve been told not to eat it, but it looks so good! A few men ran a little experiment with some marshmallows and children. Let’s see what they discovered.

Share this video [7:15; stop at 1:46].
The Marshmallow Test (Stanford Experiment + Truth)

  • Some children chose to eat the first marshmallow, whereas others chose to wait for a second. Why do you think some children felt compelled to wait? (Answers will vary but will probably focus on how waiting would be rewarded.)
  • If you were in this experiment, do you think you would choose to eat one marshmallow now or two marshmallows later? Why? (Accept all reasonable answers.)
  • One of the boys who smelled the cake went to those who had walked away and encouraged them to “smell the cake, smell the cake.” Why did he invite the others to join in on the cake-smelling? (Answers might include: If more do it, they can justify their actions as being okay; if everyone does it, no one will be left to tattle; if everyone does it, everyone may not get in trouble.)
  • Aside from eating one marshmallow instead of waiting for two, what are some of the temptations that you face or have faced? (Answers will vary.)
  • Without using names, when have you invited others to experience a temptation with you? (Answers will vary. Be prepared to share your own experience to get the conversation going.)
  • Again, without sharing names, when have you been encouraged to join others in a temptation they faced? (Answers will vary.)

Temptations can be strong. Peer pressure can be strong. We need to find a way out before we give in to temptations that look promising but come with harsh consequences. Let’s find out how Daniel faced the temptation placed before him.

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:

  • Index cards (1 per student)
  • Pens/pencils (1 per student)
  • Whiteboard and marker (or screenshared document)

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

Sad but true: We all face temptation. The good news is that, like Daniel, we can develop a habit of looking for God’s way out so when temptation comes, we are prepared to say no to ungodliness. Daniel began with a conviction: He believed in God, loved God, lived for God, and had a deep desire to please God. Do you have a conviction? Do you love God? Do you want to please God even before pleasing yourself or your friends?

If the temptation is strong and we are surrounded by peer pressure, resisting can be hard even when we have a conviction. Like Daniel, we need to be prepared to protect our hearts by having certain daily habits.

  • What are some habits we can form to help us stay in tune with God’s ways? (Answers will vary but should include read the Bible, pray, attend Sunday school and church.)

We are going to make lists full of ideas for what to do or say when temptation comes our way. Let’s brainstorm some ideas.

Write the ideas on the whiteboard or screenshared document as your students share them (some ideas might include pray, turn and go the other way, listen to worship music, say a Bible verse, think of Daniel, say “I love God more than this temptation,” seek God’s way out, call out to God [“I need you God!”], say no to ungodliness, get involved in some appropriate activity that will occupy your thoughts.) Have your preteens brainstorm some appropriate alternative activities to take their minds off of the temptation too (examples: play a board game with Mom and Dad, take a nature walk, play with your dog or give him a bath, etc.). Write these on the board as well.

Hand out index cards and pens/pencils. If your class is meeting online, invite students to have those items ready. Instruct students to write “When I am tempted…” at the top of their index cards. Invite them to choose ideas from the whiteboard or screenshared document that they think would be the most helpful when they face temptation. Have students write those ideas below the heading.

Look at this list when you face temptations for things that aren’t part of living a godly life. Follow the ideas on your lists and pray, asking God for help to choose His way!

Close in prayer for the strength to stand against temptation and a heart to know God’s way out when faced with difficult choices.

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