It’s Your Thang – Your Heart
Scripture quotations are from the GOD’S WORD translation, used by permission.
GOD’S WORD is a copyrighted work of God’s Word to the Nations Bible Society. Quotations are used by permission.
Copyright 1995 by God’s Word to the Nations Bible Society. All rights reserved.
The purpose of this session is to explain that love is the key to ministry. To minister is to love. And love comes from the heart.
Activate Your Audience
Have a Heart
Purpose: To help youth understand it is better to give love than to receive it.
Materials: 10 heart-shaped pieces of pink paper for each group member, a pencil for each group member
Setup: Pass out one pencil and ten hearts to each group member.
Time: Approximately 15 minutes
Procedure: Explain: The object of this game is to give away the most hearts. Follow these rules:
1. When giving away a heart, write your initials on the heart so everyone will know you gave that heart away.
2. You may only give hearts away to a person one at a time. Before giving another heart to the same person, you must give another heart away to someone else.
3. If you receive a heart from someone, you may not then give one of your hearts back to the same person. You must give a heart away to someone else first.
Give your group exactly ten minutes (or whatever time you think best) in which to give away the hearts.
After time is up, instruct everyone to sit down and count how many initials are on each heart for each person. Then, go around the circle and ask each person for the total for each set of initials. Declare the winner.
Bring them Closer
Have a Heart (continued)
Discuss the following questions with your group.
1. What would the game have been like if the object was to get the most hearts?
Answer: Everyone would have just stood around waiting for someone else to give.
2. Each of you started with only ten hearts. How is it that most of you gave away more than ten hearts?
Answer: You had to get some hearts in order to give more away.
Transition: The hearts that you gave away represent love. Each time you give love to someone, you give part of your heart away. Most people think the object of life is to get the most love, so they just stand around waiting for someone to give. For the Christian, however, the object of life is to give love away to others. And, as God designed it, you can only give so much love away before you need more love yourself, but that shouldn’t keep you from giving in the first place.
The greatest thing you can ever do on this planet is love — and love comes from the heart. We’re going to look today/tonight at how to become great lovers — loving from the heart.
Focus on music about loving God and others. If possible, sing “They Will Know We are Christians by our Love”
Communicate the Word: It’s Your Thang — Your Heart
B. Review the greatest commandment (Matthew 22:38 – 40)
1. Giving God your heart in love is the greatest thing you could ever do
2. Giving others your heart in love is the second greatest thing you could ever do
3. Our “THANG” — our ministries — are nothing without this kind of love
C. Transition: Love must be given through actions in ministry — in your THANG
II. Yeah, you’ve got spiritual gifts. So what? (I Corinthians 13:1 – 3)
A. The gift of tongues is pointless without love
B. The gift of prophecy/knowledge is pointless without love
C. The gift of giving/service is pointless without love
D. Your THANG is pointless without love — totally useless
III. Love takes action — it gives from deep within the heart (I Corinthians 13:4 – 7)
A. Patience: thinks of the other first and waiting without thought of self
B. Kindness: to parents, teachers, enemies, friends, etc.
C. Doesn’t envy: celebrates the success of others without wanting a share of the profit
D. Doesn’t boast: doesn’t use the mouth to say, “Hey, look at me! Look what I can do!”
E. Isn’t proud: doesn’t walk around thinking it’s better than anyone else
F. Isn’t rude: treats authority figures and peers with the greatest respect
G. Isn’t self-seeking: isn’t always asking, “What’s in it for me?”
H. Isn’t easily angered: doesn’t fly off the handle when things don’t go my way
I. Keeps no record of wrongs: forgives and forgets on a daily basis
J. Doesn’t delight in evil: doesn’t listen to, watch, or participate in sin
K. Rejoices in the truth: wants to be totally honest about everything
L. Always protects: stands guard to defend others (helpless, less fortunate, friends, etc.)
M. Always trusts: doesn’t doubt God or others
N. Always hopes: always expects the best
O. Always perseveres: sticks do it — doesn’t just start fast and then fade
IV. Gifts are Tools with Which to Love(I Corinthians 13:8 – 13)
A. Again, gifts are great, but they are only tools of this present age with which to love
B. It’s time to grow up and realize that the point of the game is to give the most hearts (refer to game)
V. Conclusion (John 13:35)
Like the game with the hearts, most people think the object of the game is to get the most love. Everybody’s looking at self. But the object of the game if you are a Christian is to give away the most love. Everybody wants love, so lets start being the ones to give it. How does the Bible say that non-Christians will know Jesus is real? “They will know we are Christians by our love…”
Do Something About It
Explain: If time allows, pass out a new set of blank hearts to everyone (at least one per person). Have each person write down the name of one or more people that they need to learn to love from each of the following categories: teachers, parents, friends, enemies, siblings, etc. Have them take these hearts and place them in their Bible or at home in a place where they will see it and it will remind them of the love that they need to show for these people.
Pray and dismiss.