Conversation Starters: Forgive
Posted on April 29, 2015 by Karah
THE BIBLE MEETS LIFE: Even in the best of relationships, we will hurt or disappoint one another. It’s often easy to forgive a misunderstanding or unintentional mistake, but it’s harder when the person “knows better” and does it anyway. Or the person keeps doing the same thing again and again. Some of us become hesitant to forgive; because by doing so, it feels like we’re saying what they did was OK. But just as Jesus forgave us, we are to forgive others.
Genesis 25; 27; 32-33
LIFE POINT: Jacob and Esau were twin brothers. Their father was Isaac, and their mother was Rebekah. Jacob liked to stay home and learned to cook. Esau liked to be outside and hunt wild animals. After hunting, Esau would cook the meat for his father to eat. One day Jacob tricked his father and made his brother angry. Esau wanted to hurt Jacob. Rebekah sent Jacob to his uncle. Jacob stayed with his uncle and worked for him caring for his sheep. Jacob married and had many children. He finally decided to return home. Jacob wondered if his brother would still be angry. One of his helpers came and said, “Some men are coming to see you.” Jacob wondered if Esau was sending men to hurt him. So he sent animals to Esau as a gift. But Esau wasn’t angry. When he saw Jacob, he hugged him and welcomed him home.
LIVE IT OUT: Forgiveness is a difficult concept for preschoolers to understand. Model forgiveness for your preschooler so he can begin to understand what it looks and feels like. Soon he will take the initiative on his own to forgive someone.
Genesis 25; 27; 32-33
LIFE POINT: Jacob and Esau were twin brothers. Esau had been born first. The firstborn son received a special birthright and blessing. Esau loved being outside and hunting. Jacob loved to cook. One day, Jacob was cooking a stew. Esau was hungry and said he’d give Jacob anything if he could have some. Jacob wanted Esau’s birthright. Esau was hungry and said Jacob could have it! The time came for Isaac to give Esau his blessing. Rebekah, came up with a plan. Isaac had instructed Esau to go out, hunt, and bring him back a meal. While Esau was gone, Rebekah and Jacob tricked Isaac into giving him Easu’s blessing. Esau was so angry that he said he would kill his brother Jacob. So, Jacob quickly left! Many years later, Jacob returned home. Jacob was afraid to see Esau. But Esau ran to meet Jacob and hugged him.
LIVE IT OUT: Ask your child to think of someone he needs to forgive, either a friend or family member. Help her think of how she can apologize.
Matthew 18:21-28, 32-33
THE POINT: Relationships grow deeper with forgiveness. Are you quick to forgive others? Why or why not? Examine your heart for any bitterness that you’ve allowed
to grow. Discuss the following quote:
“Forgiveness is me giving up my right to hurt you for hurting me.”1 — Anonymous
LIVE IT OUT: Your student has been encouraged to do one or both Live It Out activities. Here are some suggested ways to help your student:
If he or she plans to complete Forgiveness Unlimited:
•Discuss the importance of confessing sin to the Lord.
•Pray with your student, thanking God for His immeasurable forgiveness toward us.
If he or she plans to complete Selfish Forgiveness:
•Make yourself available to your student to talk as he or she learns to forgive people who may have hurt him or her.
•Model forgiveness in your home this week by extending grace to your spouse, children, and friends.
1. Stephanie Sarkis, “30 Quotes on Forgiveness,” Psychology Today, 1 February 2011, [cited 14 September 2014]. Available from the Internet: http://www.psychologytoday.com.