Sunday, November 20, 2011

Faith and Disney: The Little Mermaid

Write on the board or on a piece of newsprint some ridiculous rules for the class.  For example:
· Those with a “c” in their name cannot take part in the discussion.
· No chewing gum, eating food, or drinking drinks
· Keep your feet on the floor
· You cannot wear a hat
· If you have on red, you must sit on the floor
· Raise your hand and be called on before speaking.

Post the rules and after their reaction, tell them that you’ll be talking about RULES tonight.

Why do you think we have rules?

Why do some people break rules while others are strict followers of rules?
Which one are you?

Because you don’t agree with a rule, does that make it wrong?  Does that give you the right to break it?

Have you ever broken rules and been rescued form the consequences?  Tell about it.
· What was the rule?
· What was the consequence of breaking it?
· Who rescued you?

Tell me if you agree or disagree with these statements:
1. In my personal life, I am the one who sets the rules.
2. In school, I should follow every rule set by the school system.
3. In relationships, all rules should be fashioned through discussion and consensus.
4. God demands that all the rules of the Bible be followed by Christians.
5. Under certain conditions, it is acceptable to break an established rule.
6. If you break a rule, you should be willing to adhere to the consequences.
7. You should follow rules to avoid punishment.
8. You should follow rules to gain rewards.
9. You should follow rules because that is what being a Christian is all about.
10. All rules are good.

What is the most important rule we live by?  What makes it important?

All areas of our life have rules:  school, home, dating, friends, society.

What are some of the rules you have at school? Is it a good or bad rule?  Why?

Do you think teenagers need rules?  Why or why not?

What would happen if your parents had no rules?

Why do you think parents have so many rules?

Show The Little Mermaid video where Ariel comes to her father after missing the concert.  End with her swimming away.

· What was Ariel’s rule?  (not to go to the surface)
· What was her father afraid of? (that humans would see her)
· Why did he have this rule? (to protect her)
· Could you see your parents in this video?  When or how?
· Would your parents be able to see you in this video?  When or how?
· Flounder tried to help Ariel by covering for her.  Do you think this is what friends should do? Should they lie for you?
· Do you feel sometimes that your parents won’t talk to you about rules, like King Titan?
· Do you have any say in the rules, or do they just make them and not listen to compromise? Why do you think they do this?

What kinds of rules are there in the Bible?
· Leviticus is a book of rules.  Look at some in chapter 18 and 19.
· Ten Commandments (Exodus 20:3-17)
1. No other gods
2. No idols
3. Misuse of God’s name
4. Sabbath rest
5. Honor parents
6. No murder
7. No adultery
8. No stealing
9. No lying
10. No coveting

Read Mark 12:28-31.  This is called the Greatest Commandment.

The first four ten commandments fall under “love God”.  Five through 10 fall under love neighbor and self.

The way Jesus gave the commandment was much more positive then what was found in Exodus.

If you think a rule at home is not fair, try talking to your parents and compromise.  They make rules because they want to protect you.  They’ve been there before and really do know what is best whether you believe that or not.  Respect them and they’ll respect you and your ideas. 

There will always be rules.  Someone or something will always have the final word.   Breaking the rules will not get you anywhere.  Just follow the great commandment given by Jesus,  “love God and love your neighbors and yourself.”  If you are true to that, then you’ll be OK.

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