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Day 1: Keeping Your Eyes Open

In the world of spiders, she gets a lot of attention.  Take a guess - you already know her name….she’s the Black Widow.  Her bite is feared because its venom is “reported” to be 15 times stronger than a rattlesnake's. I don’t think that is true - (most people who are bitten suffer no serious damage— let alone death).  But she often does make you rather sick.  And most folks avoid them.  Well, not all…..

Recently, some brothers got it in their heads that if they were bitten by a Black Widow, they would be given super powers like Spider Man.  No, really! - That’s what they thought.  So, this trio of brothers - aged 12, 10 & 8 - poked the spider with a stick, set off her defenses and purposefully allowed her to bite each one of them.  Brave choice or stupid choice?

Multiple Choice:
A.  The 3 amigos became like Spider Man
B.  The boys weren’t affected at all by the bites
C.  They all ended up in the hospital - really sick!
D.  I just made all that up

The correct answer is “C”  (with muscular pain, sweating, fever and general tremors) & I would imagine Mom had a few things of her own to say and do once she got them home).

Maybe those brothers will grow old together and re-tell the story of the time when they came up with the “hairbrain” idea of allowing themselves to be bitten by a Black Widow….  

Now, I don’t believe that there are stupid people, but I do believe that people sometimes make some really bad choices/dumb decisions.  For insstance, can you name the famous ocean liner that sank on its 1st maiden voyage (killing more than 1,500 aboard)?  Can you say “Titanic” …..

It was April 1912. Almost everyone was so confident in the Titanic, they called the ship “unsinkable.”  See if you spot any problems:
     ~The ship was never test driven

     ~There were no safety regulations in place for a ship that size and the Titanic didn't carry adequate safety equipment
     ~There were only 16 lifeboats (not enough for even 1/2 the people)
     ~Crew members weren't prepared with binoculars
     ~The boat didn’t have adequate lighting for an emergency
     ~Even though the Titanic had a state-of-the-art wireless messaging system, the crew was not trained very well in how to use it
     ~ The helmsman may have made a steering error and failed to correct course in time to miss the iceberg.  

 

The sinking of the Titanic was a disaster that could have been / should have been avoided.  It’s easy to look back and see the mistakes…..

        EVERYBODY MAKES MISTAKES
      EVERYBODY MAKES GOOD DECISIONS & BAD DECISIONS….

 

Including YOU!~


In your own notebook or journal, write down 3 good decisions that you’ve made that you are proud of!

Now, write down 2 not-so-good decisions that you’ve made that you are not proud of!

 


We all make some really good choices….and sometimes we make come really bad one.  Welcome to the human race!  The Bible is full of people - REAL PEOPLE - who lived life and made decisions and some of their decisions were great and some of their decisions were not-so-great (sometimes, they made terrible decisions).  

 

One of the things I love about the Word of God is that God is ALWAYS truthful when He speaks and He “tells it like it is.”  He talks about the great decisions that people made and He talks about the bad decisions that they made.  One of the reasons He tells us about the lives of people is He wants us to learn from them.

 

Would you pick one of the following individuals from the list below? Day Two’s session will give you some specific instructions regarding that person you picked.

 

Adam & Eve, Noah, Abraham, Joseph, Elijah,
Esther, Daniel, Mary (
Jesus’ Mom), Peter,
Hannah, Moses, Paul, David, Barnabas

Day 2: Doing My Own Research

On Day One, you were asked to pick one of the following individuals from the list below (and circle that name)? Here is the list that you were to choose from:

 

 

Adam & Eve, Noah, Abraham, Joseph, Elijah,
Esther, Daniel, Mary (
Jesus’ Mom), Peter,
Hannah, Moses, Paul, David, Barnabas
..

 

Today’s focus is on what you decide ~ it’s about that individual that you chose from the list above.  Write down the name of the person you picked:      ________________________________

Spend time today reading what the Bible says about the person you chose.  You will have a do a little “digging” to uncover what the Bible tells you about that individual (don’t worry about finding out everything the Bible says about your person) - If you need help finding them, ask a parent, call me (Mike Smith - 615-806-9574), Google them…., or look in the back of your Bible for references in order to find info about them.

 

TAKE YOUR TIME (don’t rush this!) - What are a few things that the Bible tells me about the person I chose?  Include the “good & the bad."

 Day 3: Some Pretty Good Lessons

 

So, on Day Two, you spent some time  reading what the Bible says about the person you chose.  You probably had to do a little “digging” to uncover what the Bible tells you about your individual ……

Today, would you go back and read what you said about that person…

               Complete the following exercise ~

What did I learn about the person that I did not know?

 

What do I think God is saying to ME about my life?

 

What are some of the good decisions that person    made that I need to learn from in my life?

Day 4: Imitators

 

They always say, "imitation is the sincerest form of flattery." 

Earlier this year, we lost one of the greatest basketball players of all time, Kobe Bryant, in a helicopter crash. He was known for his killer instinct, or as his fans called it, the Mamba Mentality, which was his courage to go out and score in the final minutes when the game was on the line. He would make tough shots in the final minutes of a playoff game, and lead his team to victory. He was a notoriously hard worker. But hard work wasn't the only thing that made him great. 

As a young man, Kobe Bryant would watch Michael Jordan playing on his television. He would watch his moves, how he dribbled, how he shot the ball, his style of play, and his overall work ethic. Kobe Bryant saw that the things that made Michael Jordan one of the best ever to do it, and decided to do these things himself. 

This is how it should be with us Christians; you and I need to have two people that we should always be looking to imitate.

Imitate Christ:

In Ephesians 5, the apostle Paul tells us that we are to imitate God, as beloved children.

There's certain things that God does, that we are called to do. Jesus fed the poor, healed sick people, and loved unconditionally.

For 33 years, He walked the Earth, showing us how to live and how to treat other people, and how to pray. And when He was finished, He said this:

“I tell you the truth, anyone who believes in me will do the same works I have done, and even greater works,    because I am going to be with the Father." - John 14:12

Wow! Look at all the amazing things Jesus did as He walked among us, and then think about this: we can do even greater things than that! How incredible!

But we still have one more person that we need to go out and imitate:

Imitate Me

No, not me. You don't need to go home and try your best to act like Billy Vos. But in 1 Corinthians, Paul writes, "imitate me, because I am of Christ!"

Did God put this in the Bible only for that specific group of people in that time and place almost 2000 years ago? Or did He put this in there because you needed to hear this too?

Every single one of us needs a mentor; we all need a person in our lives to look up to and follow an example. This isn't just anybody, though - this needs to be a Christlike person in your life! You may love Addison Rae's TikTok account, but that doesn't make her a suitable mentor for you. Lebron James may be a great basketball player and a great guy, but that doesn't mean he's the right mentor for you. Kanye West may be your favorite artist at the moment, but that doesn't make him the best possible mentor for you. Nothing against any of these people - you just need someone who is both Christlike, and easily accessible in your own life. 

 

Middle Schooler, your challenge is this:

Earlier this week, we looked at different characters in the Bible and some of the decisions they'd made, and how they relate          to our own lives.

Now, let's go out and find a person in our own life that we can learn from their mistakes, and learn from their experiences!