Middle School

Time Out

Lesson 2 


Summer 2020


By: Jill Meek  


June 14, 2020

Lesson Focus:

Take time out for God.

Bible Basis:

Exodus 20:8-11; Mark 16:2-6; Acts 20:7

Materials Needed:

Step 1:

  • Internet access

Summary & Links:

Students will explore how people spend their time and discover that we miss out when we don’t set aside time to refocus.

Memory Verse:

“Remember the Sabbath day by keeping it holy.”
—Exodus 20:8

Step 1:

Students will explore how people spend their time and discover that we miss out when we don’t set aside time to refocus.

Materials Needed:

  • Internet access

Different states and churches within states are adopting various policies about meeting together on Sundays during the pandemic. Be sure to embrace what your church leaders have decided as they have done so after prayer and consideration. Adapt the following to fit your group’s experiences.

As you begin this session, ask your middle schooler if there are activities they are looking forward to this summer. Your students may talk about things that are still cancelled due to COVID-19 or may express hopefulness that some things may return even if they will look different.

Summertime is here! It may look very different this year. Is anyone trying to take a vacation this summer? Allow students to talk about plans or hopes for vacations. Some may talk about job losses in the family that will affect what they do.

Did you know that most Americans who have paid vacation days at work don’t use them all—and not because of quarantine issues? Some are worried about finances, others don’t plan well, and many are worried that bosses and coworkers will think less of them if they take vacation.

  • Before COVID-19 did you ever find yourself wishing there were more hours in a day? What made you feel that way? (Answers may include that school takes a large chunk of time; friendships, extracurricular activities, and homework take priority and then there are chores, etc.)
  • During this quarantine when we’ve all had extra time on our hands, what did you do with the “extra hours”? (Accept all reasonable answers. Some may talk about finally learning how to play guitar or learning to cook, etc. while others will acknowledge spending more time on video games or watching TV.)

Use the article linked below to show the graphs revealing how great writers, composers, and thinkers of the past spent their time each day. Do not take time to read through them all, but do scroll to familiar ones: Beethoven, Ben Franklin, etc. You can note that John Milton took time each morning for memorizing Scripture.

Share the following infograph:
Memorising the Bible and drinking 50 cups of coffee a day: From Darwin to Dickens, how history’s biggest thinkers spent their days

In the modern world, our days look different than these. You might think that the quarantine would allow us more time to spend on things that these big names in history embraced, but our days frequently get gobbled up in more of the same time wasters we had before.  

  • How do average middle school students spend their day? (Ask students to help you fill in the list. At this point in the social distancing, weekdays and weekends may look very much alike.)

Our days tend to become full of activities that we choose and that people expect of us. Let’s look more at what we are doing and what God has to say about rest.

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/markers

We’ve learned that Sabbath is more than dropping by church or watching online for an hour or two each Sunday. Sabbath is not just about a quick break from the rest of life. Instead, it helps shape and prioritize the rest of our lives. 

 So let’s talk about how to make our “Sabbath” truly restful and worshipful.  

  • What are the challenges, temptations, or sacrifices related to making Sabbath a habit? (Other activities and relationships to which we are committed compete for our time. Technology keeps us constantly occupied and it is hard to simply worship and listen. Easier to do what everyone else is doing, and sometimes it’s hard to spend time with Someone we can’t see or audibly hear. Might be tempted to rush through the time just to say we’ve done it.)
  • What would motivate you to try making Sabbath a habit, or to keep it up when it’s tough? (Answers will vary, but in general, remembering why God is worthy of our time and worship and how Sabbath helps shape and prioritize our entire life.)

Make sure your students have access to writing supplies. Allow them to brainstorm practices or activities (perhaps from their Step 3) that they could incorporate to help them practice a Sabbath. Have them draw a circle graph (similar to those in the article in Step 1) on their paper and fill it in with ways they might like to spend a restful time with God. Encourage them to use their infograph as a template for a Sabbath rest with God this week.

Be sure to ask your students to share about their Sabbath next week.

Close in prayer.

Spread the word

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