What is the Measure of Your Success?

THEME

Idolatry-Discerning: Wanting More.

MEMORY VERSE

Saying the memory verse together at suppertime will imprint it on the hearts of your children forever.

Luke 12:15

Be on your guard against wanting to have more and more things. Life is not made up of how much a person has.

NOTES

The ritual of shopping for Christmas hit a new low this year (2006) when retailers opened their stores on Thanksgiving Day with incredible deals for early holiday shoppers. It is hard not to get caught up in this hype and to start measuring our success by how much we give and receive for Christmas. In this episode, Liz is especially hopeful that he will get the latest video game for Christmas. He pins all his Christmas dreams on this one item, only to be disappointed when there is no Jeter Ten Thousand game system under his Christmas tree. But Liz's dad has other priorities-priorities that place family time in front of screen time.

What kind of priorities do we teach our children when we plan for Christmas gifts and celebrations? Do we give gifts that emphasize family values? Do we make time for worship at home and at church? Do we include on our lists those who are less fortunate than we are-maybe even sacrificing some of our own wishes to meet their needs?


JUST THE FACTS

How well did you listen to the story?

Q. What is the name of the game that Liz wants for Christmas?
A. Jeter 10,000.

Q. Which of Liz’s friends has one of these games?
A. Spike.

Q. What did Liz received instead?
A. A sled.

Q. What surprise gift did Liz’s dad give the family?
A. A trip to Lizard World.

GOOD QUESTION

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.

Q.
What does success mean to you? Is it how much you have? What do you think success is to God?
A.
The verse for this episode is Luke 12:15. This verse is part of the story of the rich fool. Jesus warns His listeners (and us) not to measure the success of our lives by how much we have. Jesus concludes the story by saying, "This is how it will be with anyone who stores up things for himself but is not rich toward God." The phrase "rich toward God" is one to ponder. What does it mean to be rich toward God? Is it to store up His Word in your heart (Psalm 119:11)? Is it to give yourself and your resources to serve the needy (Matthew 5:16)? Is it to trust God like a little child, recognizing your complete dependence on Him for all you are and all you do (Matthew 18:4)? Is it to be poor in spirit, to mourn, to be meek, to hunger and thirst for righteousness, to be merciful, to be pure in heart, to be a peacemaker, to be persecuted (Matthew 5:3-12)? It is this and more-it is to love God with your my heart, soul, mind, and strength and your neighbor as myself (Matthew 22:37-39).

SO WHAT?

There are many opportunities to give to someone in need-your church may participate in the Angel Tree Christmas giving or you can pick up the names of needy children at the grocery store. Can you add a needy child or family to your Christmas list this year?

Some families give a toy away for every new toy they receive. Can you go through your toys and find something that you no longer use (or never used!) that you can give to someone who has less than you do? (Remember to give away things that are nice-things that you yourself would be happy to receive.)
This page can be found at http://kidscorner.reframemedia.com/parents/guide/what-is-the-measure-of-your-success