Conversation Starters: Give with Joy
Posted by Karah
CONNECTION POINT: Giving is a sign of obedience to God.
THE BIBLE MEETS LIFE: For years, our national leaders have hotly debated how the government can help people—and how much to help. Blogs and news shows have joined the discussion, and people are often polarized into opposing camps. Within the body of Christ, though, believers are called to give and help others. Even as God provides for us, He calls us to be a conduit of His generosity and provision to others.
Concept: Give with Joy
LIFE POINT: Daniel and his three friends lived in King Nebuchadnezzar’s palace. Daniel was strong, smart, and handsome. Daniel and his friends were learning to be special helpers to the king. The king’s helper brought Daniel rich foods and drinks. Daniel knew that God did not want him to eat those kinds of foods. Daniel asked the king’s helper, “Will you bring vegetables and water for my friends and me?” The king’s helper was afraid the boys would not be strong and healthy. Daniel said, “Please feed us vegetables and water for ten days. See if we are as strong and healthy as the other men.” After ten days, Daniel and his friends were stronger than the other young men. The king’s helper let them eat the good foods. Daniel and his friends were glad they had chosen to eat good food and obey God.
LIVE IT OUT: Emphasize to your child that Daniel chose to obey God’s laws about food. Tell your child she can obey what the Bible says; we can follow Jesus’ example in the Bible. She can be kind and loving to other people.
LIFE POINT: The soldiers took young men back to the king. The men lived at the palace. They learned how to serve the king. The men were fed the same foods the king ate. Daniel knew the food was not made according to God’s laws. Daniel asked if he and his friends could eat vegetables and drink water. The officer was afraid that Daniel would become weak and make the king angry. Daniel spoke to the guard. “Please test us. Give us vegetables and water for 10 days. Then see at how we look. See how the others look. Then decide.” The guard agreed. He gave Daniel and his friends vegetables and water for 10 days. Daniel and his friends looked better than the others. They looked healthier than the others. The guard let Daniel and his friends keep eating vegetables and drinking water.
LIVE IT OUT: How does your family honor God? Today’s story told how Daniel honored God with his obedience. Read the following verses and talk about other ways to honor God: Psalm 86:2; Romans 14:6; Revelation 4:11.
THE POINT: We are called to join God in giving for the good of others.
• When have you enjoyed giving something away?
• What does it mean to be content?
• Why do you think so many people misunderstand Philippians 4:13?
• When you have seen fruit come from being generous?
• How can we tell the difference between wants and needs?
Discuss the following quote:
“I do not believe one can settle how much we ought to give. I am afraid the only safe rule is to give more than we can spare.”1—C. S. Lewis
LIVE IT OUT: Encourage your student to take practical steps to take his or her faith and Live It Out. Here are some ways you can encourage your students to live out their faith with Christ personally, in community, and in their culture:
• CHRIST: We have all been given different gifts and talents. Help your student to understand that his or her gifts will be different from the gifts of friends. Look up a Spiritual Gifts test online and take it together with your student.
• COMMUNITY: Look for opportunities where you and your student can use your gifts to help the community and bless others.
• CULTURE: Spend time with your student going over his or her gifts. Encourage your student to use these gifts to further God’s kingdom.
1. C. S. Lewis, Mere Christianity (New York: HarperCollins, 2001) 86.