This series is written in an interactive small group format. I have personally used this material for Student and HYPHEN ages, however, the content could be adjusted for any age group. The content is based on Zach Hunter’s book, “Be the Change.”
Philippians 2:3 (NIV) Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves.
TALK: Go around the room and have everyone answer
- What is sacrifice? What does it look like today?
HEART OF THE MATTER:
There is a father-son team that runs marathons, competes in triathlons, and once even made the 3,735 miles across the USA on foot. They’re known as Team Hoyt-the dad’s name is Dick Hoyt and his son is Rick. Oh, by the way, Rick can’t walk or talk. When he was being born, his umbilical cord got wrapped around his neck, cutting off the oxygen to his brain. Doctors told Dick and his wife that His son would always be a “vegetable.”
But Rick’s parents struggled to give him the normal life most of us take for granted. Even things that most of us don’t like to do, like walking the dog, were impossible for Rick to do. Rick’s mom and dad managed to get him into a public school. With a little help from a computer Rick can control with small movements of his head. By using this computer, Rick can convey his thoughts and emotions on the computer screen.
When Rick was 15 years old, he asked his dad to participate in a five-mile run with him in order to benefit a local athlete who had been paralyzed in an accident. Dick was not a runner-or even an athlete-but he agreed to push Rick through the race in his wheelchair.
Since then, the father-son team has competed in more than 900 events together! That includes 10ks, half marathons, marathons and triathlons. For the iron man Triathlon in Hawaii, which starts with a 2.4-mile ocean swim, Dick puts Rick in a raft and pulls him with a rope tied around his waist. Then he gets out and carries Rick to the start of the 100-mile bike race, where Rick sits in front of his dad on a specially made seat. Their best time in this event is 13 hours, 43 minutes, and 37 seconds.
Hope for a productive, happy life for his son is why Dick began his competitive pursuits. Just think about how huge the commitment is on Dick’s part. He gives so much for his son. For years he has worked out and trained-sometimes five hours a day, even when he was working-to stay in shape for the races. Together the father-son team is a lot like the body of Christ. What are you and I willing to do for the good of others? How much of ourselves are we willing to give?
DISCUSSION: Go around the room and have everyone answer
- Do you think our generation has lost the ability to be humble and put others first?
- What would you be willing to sacrifice for someone else? For whom would you make that sacrifice?
- What does Philippians 2:3 mean when it says we should consider others better than ourselves?
TAKE ACTION: COMMUNITY CHALLENGE – Go around the room and have everyone answer
Make a list this week of people in your life who have sacrificed for you to be where you are today. On the other side of the paper list some things you can sacrifice to benefit the lives of others.
Action springs not from thought, but from a readiness for responsibility. – Dietrich Bonhoffer (1906-1945) German Pastor, Theologian, and author
1) INFLUENCE – BE THE CHANGE
2) COMMUNITY – BE THE CHANGE
3) COURAGE – BE THE CHANGE
4) LEADERSHIP – BE THE CHANGE
5) COMPASSION – BE THE CHANGE
6) ENDURANCE – BE THE CHANGE
7) SACRIFICE – BE THE CHANGE
8) STANDING FIRM – BE THE CHANGE