Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Building Character: Goodness

As a family, we are studying a character trait each week, and are beginning with the Fruits of the Spirit. We are just getting started, so up until now, we have talked about Love, Joyfulness, Peaceable, Patience, and Kindness.  If you want more information on the nuts and bolts of what we are doing, you can read how to get started on this post.

This week's character quality is GOODNESS.  When one of the Littles becomes bent on "making trouble", we admonish with, "Do the good things" and "Do what is good and right".

Big Littles is full of questions.  I have heard the statistic that four-year-olds ask an average of 450 questions each day.  I would say this is a low estimate.  :)  Many Bible stories are about people who do not choose to "do the good things" but rather choose disobedience and evil.  Every time we read about someone that does not choose to do the good things, he asks, "WHY?  Why would they do that?" in such an earnest way.  The answers are complicated.  Why do people choose to disobey?  Why does he choose to disobey?  We talk about the nature of sin and temptation, but the main thing for him to understand is that everyone is given a choice to do good or to do evil.  Everyone that has walked on this earth, with the exception of Jesus, at some time has chosen to do evil.  (Romans 3:23)  God gives us a way to make things right again, but we need to constantly work on choosing to do what is good and right and work daily on seeking to do God's will.

GOODNESS vs. evil
Having a heart for the Lord and walking in His light.

Ephesians 5:8-9 For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Walk as children of light (for the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness, righteousness, and truth).

As a secondary verse, we use one we had memorized a few months ago:
Romans 12:9 - "Hate what is evil, Hold on to what is good."  
(This translation is the Good News Translation and is also used in the New Century Version.  I don't typically use these versions, but in this particular case, I wanted to find one that was very, very plain and easy for them to grasp.) 

This Week's Bible Story:  Genesis 5:22, 24 and Genesis 6:9
I wanted to emphasize that goodness is "walking in His light" so I chose the two men in the Bible who are named as men who "walked with God". 

Genesis 5:22, 24 - Enoch walked with God
Genesis 6:9 - Noah walked with God

I think it is interesting that Enoch was Noah's Great-Grandfather (the lineage being: Enoch, Methuselah, Lamech, Noah).

We also sang the song, "Enoch Walked With God" from Each Little Dewdrop.

  • It is interesting to speculate about how Enoch might have influenced Noah's faith in God.  We discussed our own heritage of faith and how valuable it was to have grandparents and great-grandparents walking in God's light to help teach us the way.  I know not everyone has this blessing, so if you don't, discuss with your children your determination to be a family that walks with God, teaching your children's children's children about the Lord.
  • Discuss what it means to "walk with God".  What do we know about how Enoch walked with God?  What do we know about how Noah walked with God?  
  • Drawing a simple visual of a path to heaven, with a stick man walking on that path is helpful in illustrating our walk as disciples of Christ.  Draw fiery darts and temptations along the path and point out that these are moments where the man must make a choice to do good or evil.  (We love the book "Little Pilgrim's Progress" by Helen Taylor.  We refer to the path traveled by "Little Christian" quite often!)
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  1. I love your discussion topics -- very valuable stuff there for kids AND adults.

  2. Thank you Lori! I tell you, I think I'm benefiting more than anyone on these!


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