Taking a stand for personal and spiritual values can seem easy while at home or at church. Sometimes our situations do not allow for such a safe space in our beliefs. There are times when ‘not going along’ with the crowd or leadership can be impactful. We are encouraged to stand on our foundations found in the teachings of Jesus. Taking a moral stand for your beliefs can render some serious consequences. In today’s lesson we learn about how one situation could mean life or death. Take a few moments and read about three men who stood for their beliefs and were sentenced to death. In this story, we can see how these men stood on their moral ground and influenced the King, all because they put their trust in God.
Go around the room and discuss your first thoughts about the story.
[Children] Retell the story in your own words?
[Children - Adults] What was the impact for the King if he were to let these three men not follow the same rules as everyone else?
[Children - Adults] Describe a time when your friends really thought something was cool but your morals didn’t match up? What did you do? What happened?
[Children] Can you name Shadrach’s, Meshach’s, and Abednego’s real names?
[Teens - Adults] It’s very difficult for us to understand the type of governance since most of us have not ever lived in a situation where we had a king or leader demand us to go against our morals. Is this a children’s story? Why or Why not?
[Teens - Adults] In what ways does our media (movies, music, cellphones, social media) reshape our moral compass?
[Teens] Put yourself in these guys’ situation, would you: A) Just bow down, get this over with God knows our hearts, B)Do the same thing Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego did? [Is this even realistic to think this would happen to you?]
[Adults] If you had sometime to reflect, have you ‘put a stake in the ground’ on your moral values at work and home?
Take a moment and pray a prayer of gratitude for God’s living presence in our daily lives.