Second chances are always something we’re thankful to receive—especially when they are unexpected. Let’s watch a video that’s all about a program in California that’s giving young criminals a second chance, even when they don’t deserve it.
Watch this video together with your students [2:54; stop at 2:20]:
Hillsborough expands intervention program that gives young first-time offenders a second chance
Discuss the following questions:
- Why is this program so unique? What do you think usually happens to juvenile offenders after they commit a crime? (Usually a victim will press charges and the perpetrator is swiftly punished. Also, victims very seldom interact with the criminal face-to-face.)
- Are there some situations where this type of second chance in the justice system might not be a good idea? (This program is for non-violent offenses. If someone has put others in danger, more severe punishment might be necessary. Point out that even in those cases, criminals are given a second chance after they have completed their prescribed punishment.)
- Have you—or someone you know—ever been given a second chance? What does that feel like? (Answers will vary.)
- Why is it so hard to forgive someone after they’ve hurt you? (People are more prone to stay angry, seek revenge, or hold onto past hurts than they are to forgive.)
- Some people think that forgiveness must mean the perpetrator is innocent—that no wrong was ever really committed. Is that true? (When God allows you to forgive someone, it doesn’t mean that person didn’t do something wrong. It means that Jesus equips you to give them a second chance.)
Relationships are so hard sometimes! When it comes to second chances, we’re going to look at how God wants us to model His love and forgiveness toward others. The apostle Paul had firsthand experience with broken relationships. Let’s see what he said about handling them.