February: Peer Relationships - Life.Church Leaders

February: Peer Relationships

To kick off the year, we taught students all about wise choices. We engaged with the Bible, combatted lies, challenged ourselves to change the way we change, and even viewed some perspective-altering commercials. This month, we’re continuing our pursuit of not being different alone as we dive into Peer Relationships. God calls us to live in community, and our relationships with friends and significant others can help us become the people God has called us to be. We’ll take a look at how commitment and fear shape our relationships, and we’ll see what it means to be dateable. Get excited, and invite your students to this can’t-miss month all about relationships!

Peer Relationships (February 28)–Legends vs. Champions
Key Verses: 1 Samuel 17 NIV
YouVersion Bible Plan: Live Fearless with Sadie Robertson
Leader Guide

In this week’s video, we get to catch up with Sadie Robertson for a few minutes to learn about the difference between a Legend and a Champion. (Before you wonder if you’re still relevant or not because you’re all like Sadie Who-bertson? She’s from Duck Dynasty and Dancing with the Stars, and she’s done a ton of other stuff students love.) Sadie invites students to examine fear through the lens of David and Goliath. Ultimately, she teaches us the difference between a champion and a legend. Goliath = Champion. But David = Legend. Why? Legends defeat fear. How? Legends defeat fear by putting their faith in God. And when we put our confidence in Christ, He empowers us to be fearless in our purpose and shows us how to be light in the world.

Leader Challenge: If what you remember about the story of David and Goliath is that a shepherd boy kills a giant with a slingshot-the whole story of David and Goliath is even more legendary than you may remember. Check it out here. Test your knowledge by answering these questions before Wednesday.
Pro tip: You can use the “Explore” feature on your YouVersion Bible App to search for stories like David and Goliath. Show that to your Switch students, too!

  1. How tall was Goliath?
  2. Why was David there?
  3. What major event is happening at the time?
  4. Were other people there?
  5. Who had the cheese?
  6. What does David win for killing Goliath?
  7. For how many days did Goliath challenge the Philistines to a duel?

And, just for fun-here’s more about Sadie.

Peer Relationships (February 21)–Commitment
Key Verses: John 10:10 NIV, Matthew 16:24-26 NLT, Galations 2:20 NIV
YouVersion Bible Plan: Set Apart
Leader Guide

What’s the last thing you committed to? Take a moment and think about it. There’s a quote that says: “Commitment is doing what you said you would, long after the mood you said it in has left.” Like we talked about last week, your feelings don’t have your future in mind. Sometimes you won’t feel like committing, but we can all agree that when we push beyond our feelings and commit, it is always worth it. There are some people that would argue that the current generation has a problem with commitment. We would challenge that thought and offer this as a counter thought: When students see the benefit of committing, they can change the world. This week we will learn that the benefit of commitment is fulfillment. It’s simple. Commitment leads to fulfillment.

Leader Challenge: This week, we’ll challenge students to make a commitment they can keep in seven days. Their commitment can be as small as turning in homework every day, praying every day, or working up the courage to invite a new friend to Switch every day of the week. It’s also a great chance to start a new Plans with Friends Plan in the Bible App. If your students are less likely to complete a Plans with Friend, perhaps challenge them to come to Switch next Wednesday with a 7-day Streak in their Bible App.

Peer Relationships (February 14)–Dateable
The Point: Be the person the person you’re looking for is looking for.
Key Verses: 1 Corinthians 13:4-5 NIV, Proverbs 3:3-4 NIV, Romans 12:2 NIV, Psalm 139:23-24 NIV, Matthew 7:1-6 NIV, James 1:22-25 NIV
YouVersion Bible Plan: Dateable
Leader Guide

We dream of meeting “the one.” The one who will make us feel complete and make all of our dreams come true the moment they profess their undying love for us. We’ve got our lists of traits we want in “the one”–from their looks to how they’ll treat your family to a long trail of perfect date ideas we’ve been dreaming of since the 7th grade. But the truth is, while we’re spending a lot of time developing our hopes and expectations for “the one,” there may be someone in the equation we’re neglecting–ourselves.

This week, we’re challenging students with a perspective altering question: Are you who the person you’re looking for is looking for? This question causes us to pause and reflect introspectively. (And not just because it sounds confusing at first!) It makes us take responsibility for our own actions, habits, and behaviors. It suggests that maybe that list we’re waiting to be fulfilled by a dream guy or girl should be replaced by our own careful attention to becoming a person worth dating.

Leader Challenge: Relationships is an easy topic to generate discussion around. As leaders, here is how we can best steward the conversation to bend toward life change. When students discuss being dateable:

  1. Help the students talk about qualities and values, not the physical and fleeting.
  2. Help students identify “non-negotiables” for the person of their dreams and see if these are traits they would hold themselves to as well.
  3. Ask students to reflect on their personal goals in life. Emphasize how fulfilling our purpose makes us more dateable by becoming who God designed us to be instead of searching for our worth in the eyes of someone else.
  4. Explain that Christ is the only one who can fulfill us. We can never look to a person to fulfill what only God can fill.

Check out the Scriptures above. Some are about loving others, and some are about working on ourselves. Don’t wait until Wednesday night at Switch to understand how the Bible helps us become the person that the person we’re looking for is looking for.

Peer Relationships (February 7)–It’s impossible to live the right life when you have the wrong friends.
Key verses: Proverbs 12:26 NIV, 1 Corinthians 15:33 NIV, Proverbs 13:20 NIV
YouVersion Bible Plan: #Struggles
Leader Guide

It’s impossible to live the right life when you have the wrong friends. We know that we become like who we spend time with, and we know that the people we keep around us, even just a little bit, influence the decisions we make and ultimately, the way we see the world. This week we’re challenging our Switch students to take inventory of their closest friends. We’re calling them our inner circle friends. Inner circle friends play a major role in our lives. Even Jesus had some thoughts about this. Jesus loved everyone equally but didn’t spend equal time with everyone. Jesus made intentional decisions about who was in his inner circle, and we should, too.

Thanks to social media, our friend groups are larger than ever and still growing. Yet, the people we call true friends remain a much smaller group. What determines who we allow in our inner circles? The Bible is full of life-changing, God inspired wisdom on the value of the company we keep.

Leader Challenge: This is a great week to not only help students begin identifying the influences they have in their lives but also to reflect on the type person they want to become. Not being different alone challenges us to appreciate the differences in others around us but also offers us the opportunity to decide whether the people around us are challenging us to grow in the right ways. Encourage your students to assess whether their inner circles are helping them become a better person or causing them to fall into peer pressure. Challenge them to take action and choose their inner circle wisely.