David C Cook COVID-19 Response

Middle School

Whatever You Do, Honor God

Lesson 8 

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Spring 2022

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By: RLD Editorial Team 

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May 01, 2022

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Lesson Focus:

Honor God in all relationships.

Bible Basis:

Genesis 27:1-24, 30, 41

Materials Needed:

Step 1:

  • Internet access
  • Whiteboard and markers (or screenshared document)

Summary & Links:

Students will consider YouTube pranks and challenges and discuss when a prank goes too far as they consider how to honor God when interacting with others.

Memory Verse:

And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus.
—Colossians 3:17a

Step 1:

Students will consider YouTube pranks and challenges and discuss when a prank goes too far as they consider how to honor God when interacting with others.

Materials Needed:

  • Internet access
  • Whiteboard and markers (or screenshared document)

As the students enter, ask them to list as many pranks or TikTok and YouTube challenges as they can think of. Compile a list of as many as you can on the whiteboard (or screenshared document). When everyone is settled in, turn everyone’s attention to your list.

  • April Fool’s day was just a few weeks ago; did you pull any pranks or have any pulled on you? (Allow a few students to share. Be sure to monitor responses to make sure they are appropriate.)
  • How about the challenges we just listed? Have you tried any? Has anyone you know tried any? (Allow a few students to answer.)

TikTok and YouTube challenges and pranks can be really fun, but sometimes they go too far. Many people have been hurt by trying these types of challenges. These activities can also cause a lot of damage to property. In fact, earlier this year, there was a TikTok trend that popularized destroying and damaging school property.

Share this video with your students [2:07]:
TikTok Challenge Encourages Students to Damage, Steal School Property

This video shows the scary side of following that type of prank or challenge. Sometimes, trending challenges can do good things, like the Ice Bucket challenge that raised lots of money for ALS research.

  • What do you think? When does a prank or challenge cross the line from fun to wrong? (Answers will vary and could include: “When someone is in danger,” “when you’re putting someone else in danger,” “when you’re hurting someone emotionally,” “when you’re pressuring someone to do something they don’t want to do.”)
  • Do you think TikTok and YouTube revising their guidelines about these types of challenges would be helpful? Why or why not? (Students may have conflicting opinions: Yes, if teens can’t post videos of dangerous challenges, they can’t go viral and more teens won’t be tempted to try them. Or, no, teens always find a way around those rules, etc.)
  • Do you think pranks and challenges honor God? Can they? (Answers will vary—help your students think of some possible examples on either side if they are having trouble. Some might think pranks and challenges are just hurtful or mean. Others might think challenges can be helpful and pranks can be done in good fun without harming anyone.)

 Of course, doing something because your friends (or family member or classmate) told you to is nothing new. We’ve all heard about the dangers of following peer pressure. But now, with peer pressure extending beyond the school day due to social media, the impact seems greater. But people have always tricked others into doing what they wanted. Let’s take a look at one of those times when someone used tricks and lies to get someone else to do something they wanted.

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:

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

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

Ask someone to read the week’s memory verse (Colossians 3:17a). Our Bible story today reminds us of a simple saying, “the right thing at the wrong time is the wrong thing.” Rebekah and Jacob hurt their family relationships to try and rush God into giving Isaac what He had already promised.

  • Do you think God needed their trickery to fulfill His plan for Jacob? (No, God would have done it and done it better in His own time.)

Rebekah and Jacob were willing to sacrifice their family relationships to get what they wanted. God calls us to honor Him in all our relationships, even when that means we don’t get what we want all the time. At the beginning of the class, we talked about how pranks and challenges can cause harm, but they can also be used to cause good! Let’s work together to create a challenge that somehow encourages people to honor God in their relationships.

If your class is large, divide into groups of 5-6. Give each group a piece of paper; give them time to brainstorm. (If your class is meeting online, you can use the breakout room feature of your video chat software.) Encourage them to create a challenge that could be used on social media or in real life to honor God in their relationships. Ask them to come up with a hashtag. If they need ideas, you could suggest something like #dailyhug, where you make sure you give each member of your family a hug every day. You could even promote a #dailyhug selfie where a family gets together every day for a group hug and posts their picture on their social media.

Or, encourage your students to think of things like the #trashtag challenge, where people took before and after pictures of an area of their town that they cleaned up. A challenge like that might not be directly related to relationships, but they could do it with friends and/or family and it improves the whole town’s relationship with one another and with God’s creation.

Once every group has come up with their idea, present the options to the larger group as you write suggested hashtags on the board. Hand each student a small piece of paper and make sure they write down each hashtag that has been created. Ask them to select one or more new challenge to try this week. They can share their progress on social media, or just with friends in real life.

End with a prayer, asking God to help each student honor Him in all their relationships and interactions, online and in real life.

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