Community-Building: Being a Better Friend
Saying the memory verse together at suppertime will imprint it on the hearts of your children forever.
A friend loves at all times.
Everybody needs a friend. It's a basic human need. God created us to live in connection with other human beings. Even Jesus had friends-His disciples, and others like Mary, Martha, and Lazarus. Having friends contributes to emotional and physical health. But what does it take to make a friend? That's what Liz and his friends set out to discover in this episode.
Watching our children navigate the complexities of friendship can be difficult. Recently I read something that made sense. A young woman was going to a school function and was worried about the impression she would make. Her father told her that the most attractive people in the room would be those who wore a smile. From that moment on, she made sure that she wore her smile and her father's advice opened the door to many friendships. A simple piece of advice, but profound-one that we can suggest to our children (and remember ourselves) as we seek to establish and maintain friendships in our lives.
JUST THE FACTS
How well did you listen to the story?
Q. What assignment did Miss Wattle give her class?
A. They each had to make a new friend and write a paper about what they learned.
Q. Who became Morrie's new friend?
Q. What did they have in common?
Q. How did Lucille start her conversation with Tara?
A. With a compliment.
Q. Where did Liz look for new friends?
A. His cousin Lionel's house.
Q. What did Liz learn?
A. Some kids aren't the right kind of friends.
This question is meant to help the children develop a biblical understanding of God, who He is and what He does. The "answer" is not meant for parents to read to their children. Rather its purpose is to assist parents in guiding the conversation to this biblical understanding. We encourage you to use an open Bible in this conversation, building biblical literacy and well as a biblical theology.
There is an old hymn that says, "What a friend we have in Jesus." How do we know that Jesus is our friend?
The Bible says a friend loves at all times. We read in Romans that Jesus loves us even though we are sinners (Romans 5:8). Jesus doesn't abandon us when we fail, or when we fall on hard times. When we belong to Jesus, there is nothing in the world that can separate us from His love (Romans 8: 38-39). The Bible also tells us that friends sometimes tells us things we don't want to hear, when we are doing something wrong, or dangerous (Proverbs 27: 6, 17). Jesus shows us our sin and goes farther than any human friend can go—He offers forgiveness and righteousness when we confess and repent. Friends are those who walk with us through our joys and sorrows. And Jesus promises that He will always be with us (Matthew 28:20). Praise God for the blessing of a friend like Jesus.