High School

Who’s Driving?

Lesson 8 

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Fall 2019

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By: George Halitzka 

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October 20, 2019

Lesson Focus:

We can rely on God to lead us.

Bible Basis:

1 Samuel 3:1a, 4-10, 19; 8:6-10

Materials Needed:

Step 1:

  • Internet access

Summary & Links:

Students will watch a video about self-driven cars as they discuss discerning God’s reliable guidance for their lives.

Memory Verse:

Instead, you ought to say, “If it is the Lord’s will, we will live and do this or that.”
—James 4:15

Step 1:

Students will watch a video about self-driven cars as they discuss discerning God’s reliable guidance for their lives.

Materials Needed:

  • Internet access

Uber has been around awhile—as you know it’s an app you can use to summon a car and driver. Uber connects you, a person who needs to get somewhere, with the driver, a person who will take you there in their car. Basically, Uber and Lyft took over the industry; traditional taxi services are finding it hard to stay in business with the lower fares these ridesharing drivers are able to charge.

The concept of self-driving cars has been around for a while, too. Although Google and other companies have been experimenting with self-driving cars for years, a Russian company called Yandex has a taxi service using them in Las Vegas. Let’s check it out at the Consumer Electronics Show.

Show your students the following video [5:05]:
Riding in a Driverless Taxi at CES in 2019!

  • If you had the chance, would you take a ride in a self-driving car? In other words, do you trust a robot to take you safely from one place to another? Why or why not? (Accept all reasonable answers.)

Driving seems pretty easy—and much of the time, it is. You’re just cruising along in traffic with occasional stops at red lights. But what happens when the guy in front of you suddenly slams on the brakes to avoid hitting a squirrel? What if a little girl chasing a ball darts out in front of you unexpectedly? Theoretically, the self-driving cars have technology that picks up the data on those random incidents and responds accordingly.

But so far, self-driving cars still have problems. The guy in the video said that some of the added features on the Yandex made him feel safer than when he tried using the autopilot on a Tesla. In March of 2019, the “driver” of a 2018 Tesla Model 3 electric sedan was killed in an accident when the car was in self-driving mode. The crash occurred when a truck tractor pulling a semitrailer made a left turn in front of the Tesla, and the car failed to stop. The man in the Tesla was killed instantly.

There are moments when a human can react instinctively—and hopefully, prevent an accident. In the case with the Tesla driver, even the human failed to react in time. There’s not enough data yet to be able to properly compare safety or accidents with human driver autos vs. driverless autos.

  • What would some advantages be to driverless autos? What would be some disadvantages? (Accept all reasonable answers. Students may comment that the absence of alcohol, drugs, tiredness, and road rage would be advantages of driverless autos. Disadvantages might be failure to process data that a human would recognize as dangerous or a tech malfunction.)

For now, driven and non-driven vehicles each have their own set of problems. Nothing is completely failproof. Leading and responding to the unexpected things life throws our way can be the same unless God is in the driver’s seat. We can always rely on Him to lead us. Let’s look at how God guided Samuel in a famous story from the Old Testament.

Resources:
Preliminary Report Highway HWY19FH008
https://www.ntsb.gov/investigations/AccidentReports/Reports/HWY19FH008-preliminary.pdf

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:

  • Footstep template printouts (1 per student; template here)
  • Pens/pencils

Before class, print out enough footstep templates so that each student has one (template here).

When we face tough decisions, we need God’s guidance. Sometimes we might wish God’s voice was easier to hear! When you’re picking a college, wouldn’t it be great if He woke you up one night and said in a loud voice, “Go to Ohio State”?

Although there are times in Scripture where God spoke out loud, usually God doesn’t speak to people in an audible voice. What He does is give us wisdom! James 1:5 says, “If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you.”

  • What’s one way that you have experienced God’s wisdom? (Students may mention a new idea they had after praying for guidance, a Bible verse that helped them make a decision, or advice from a mature, godly person.)
  • Why do you think God doesn’t usually give us His wisdom in an audible voice? (Guide your students to the idea that He may be building our faith in Him.)

Sometimes, God may be hard to hear because He wants to give us more faith! Before we’re really ready to do His will, we need to surrender to Him, and perhaps take a small step forward before He reveals the rest of His plan. Perhaps if He announced the whole plan out loud from the beginning, we would shy away from taking that first step toward Him. There are times when we just aren’t ready to hear the whole thing at once—we need to mature and grow and be prepared in other ways to absorb it all. Scripture tells us that His ways are not our ways and His thoughts are not our thoughts.

Suppose you’re trying to decide what your college major will be. First question: Do you really want God’s will? Sometimes we say we do, but if we’re honest, all we want is for God to tell us what we want to hear. Say you’re thinking about engineering. You’re looking forward to designing cool stuff and making good money. Would you still want God’s will if it became clear that He wants you to major in Bible and earn peanuts as a missionary?

Obviously, the mission field isn’t for everyone. If God made you good at math and science, He very well may want you to be an engineer! But if He doesn’t, are you open to hear something different? Sometimes we have a hard time hearing because we have put up a blockade against things we don’t want to hear.

Hand each student a copy of the footsteps template and a pen or pencil. The bottom line is, we want God to guide our steps. So, let’s finish our lesson by making some footprints.

Instruct your teens to use one shoe print to write down a decision they are facing. Then—only if they really mean it—take a minute to pray and surrender this decision to God. Tell God that you’ll do whatever He wants, even if it’s not what you want. But if you’re not ready to surrender right now, He understands—giving control to God is hard! And it won’t do any good to pretend. You can take that minute to ask Him to make you willing to surrender completely to His reliable guidance. Give students a minute or two to write on their first shoe print and say a prayer.

When they have had a chance to do this, have them use the other shoe print to write down one step of faith that they can take that will help them make this decision. Have you checked out colleges that offer the major you’re considering? Have you tried to find an adult with skills like yours to ask questions about their job? Have you asked your parents and teachers for career advice? Maybe your step of faith will be one of those things—maybe it’s as simple as praying every day this week and seeing if God gives you an idea. Whatever step of faith you choose, write it on your footprint.

If time permits, allow (but don’t require) each student who wants to share an opportunity to talk about the decision they need to make, and the step of faith they’re going to take as they seek God’s wisdom.

Take these footprints home with you—maybe pin them to a bulletin board in your room. Let the second one remind you to take a step of faith that will help you seek God’s wisdom. But don’t forget about the first one—the step of surrender! Make yourself genuinely open to whatever God guides you to do because His guidance is something we can rely on!

 

Close in prayer.

Spread the word

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