Philippians: Reaching for the goal (Sunday, 9/25/11)

This Sunday we were in week three of our four week series on Paul’s letter to the Philippians. We’re using The Complete New Testament Resource, Volume 1 from Youth Specialties as a launching pad for the series; Chris Z taught the high school while Elise M taught the middle school kids.

In particular, we focused on Philippians 3:12-14, with a goal that students would  understand what it means to have Christ as the prize of their lives and what it takes to attain that prize.

There were three main take away thoughts from the lesson:

  1. A life full of ups and downs. Our lives are filled with unusual, sometimes tragic, events. At times our spiritual journey feels like a roller coaster ride—ups and downs, fun times and scary times.
  2. Paul’s plan of action. Paul details two things he does; forgets what is behind and focuses on the prize.
  3. The finish line. Paul said no matter what was going on in his life, Jesus is the prize—so he’d focus completely on reaching his goal.

A follow up idea for families of students who were here for the lesson would be to reread the passage together and discuss the following questions (maybe in the car or around the dinner table?):

  • In this passage what prize is Paul talking about?
  • What does Paul mean when he says, “Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead…”?
  • If Jesus is your prize, what hinders you from reaching him?
  • What are some changes you could make in your life this week that would show other people how important Jesus is to you?


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