Uniteens & YOU’ers (7th – 12th graders)
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“Putting God First”
The intention of this lesson is to understand that going to God first with any decision we need to make will lead to right action.
Create a personal affirmation that you will use for the next week.
¨ God is within us guiding us to the right and perfect choices for our lives.
¨ Paying attention to this inner guidance and following its direction is putting God first in our lives.
¨ We must also pay attention to the rules in our lives that are meant to keep us safe.
¨ It is important to trust our inner wisdom and to also respect the needs of others.
Jesus knew that it was time to begin to more fully honor the Christ within him and to allow this presence to direct his life. As we come into this time of spiritual understanding we begin to attach to the idea that we must be in our ‘Father’s house’ or ‘About my Father’s business’. Understanding that when we begin to realize that our inner temple is where we need to go first, we are beginning to grow into this spiritual understanding and maturity.
“The Boy in the Temple,” Luke 2:41-50
Every year our family went to Jerusalem for the Feast of the Passover. When our son Jesus was twelve years old, we went up to the Feast, according to the custom. After the Feast was over, while we were returning home, we did not realize that our son Jesus stayed behind in Jerusalem. Thinking he was in our company, we traveled on for a day. We had not seen Jesus for a while so we began to look for him among our relatives and friends. When we did not find him, we went back to Jerusalem to look for him. After three days we found him in the temple courts, sitting among the teachers, listening to them and asking them questions. Everyone who heard him was amazed at his understanding and his answers. When we saw him, we were astonished. I said to him, “Son, why have you treated us like this? Your father and I have been anxiously searching for you.” “Why were you searching for me?” He asked. “Didn’t you know I had to be in my Father’s house?” But we did not understand what he was saying to us. Then he went down to Nazareth with us and was obedient to us. But I treasured all these things in my heart. And Jesus, my son grew in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and men.
The focus of this lesson is to explore how to balance the pull of making choices based on what our friends and family want us to do and following what our inner Christ is calling us to do.
THINK ABOUT IT
¨ Where did Mary and Joseph find Jesus?
¨ What was he doing?
¨ How do you think Mary and Joseph felt when they discovered that Jesus was not with them?
¨ What might have caused Jesus to make the choices that he made?
¨ What do you think he meant by the phrase, “Didn’t you know that I must be in my Father’s house?”
¨ Tell me about a time when you made a choice that might have looked odd to your family and friends but was a direction from your inner Christ wisdom.
¨ How does “going to God first” help you, especially when you are feeling pressured by others to make a decision?
¨ How can you tap into this inner wisdom in the midst of people or a lot of activity?
¨ How would more fully developing the capacity to always be aware of this inner wisdom serve you in life?
Doing As Jesus Did
Explore how to make choices as Jesus did.
- Review the details of the story.
- Recreate this story set in modern times using issues that you currently face.
- Once you have your present day issue, create a short story, poem, rap, song or mini play sharing your story.
- Include how the story affects both your life and the lives of people around you.
- Conflicts with parents.
- Individuals following their our inner wisdom no matter what their friends are doing.
- Conflicts with friends.
- Assignments from school.
Our program for high school-age youth provides opportunities for teens to connect, learn and grow as spiritual and human beings. Through Sunday-morning sessions and regional retreats and rallies, teens have an opportunity to express the spiritually abundant life as taught and demonstrated by Jesus, the Christ.
- To introduce teens to Unity principles.
- To help teens understand and practice these principles in everyday life.
- To involve teens in prayer and meditation experiences.
- To promote the ideal of individuals working together and enjoying fellowship, worship, study and service.
Some functions of the Y.O.U. chapter are to:
- Provide a weekly opportunity to explore a concept in Truth.
- Provide an environment of security and safety for the sharing and exploration of feelings.
- Create an atmosphere of total acceptance to help young people establish their own identity, self-worth and confidence, and a feeling of “belonging.”
- Help young people explore and seek a set of values for themselves.
- Help students define their own purposes for living and develop a method of finding answers to life’s complexities.
- Help students develop a sense of interdependence through working together in a supportive, non-critical environment.
- Introduce new ways of communicating with self and others based on the principles of affirmation, denials and beholding the Christ in all people and situations.
- Expose the YOUers to their own personal power through creative self-expression and service activities.