Scotty Love: Praying for You

Scotty Love is back to answer the question: is it better to say you’ll pray for someone, or to actually do it?

LESSON NINE
Men of Action
Key Scripture: Matthew 21:28-32, Matthew 5:33-37.

ICE BREAKERS

How good are you at delegating things to other people? Do you trust others to get things done, or do you prefer to do it all on your own?

How does it feel when someone says they will do something and let you down?

Have you ever dropped the ball on an important task? What did (or didn’t) you do, and what happened as a result?

INTRODUCTION

Are you all talk, or are you a man of action? It’s one thing to say you’re going to do something, but it’s quite another to follow through. The world is full of people who make empty promises they will never fulfill, and the church has more than a few empty talkers as well.

God wants us to be men of action. When we say we’re going to pray for someone, we will. When we say we will be some place, we show up. We don’t say yes out of obligation and look for excuses to back out later, and we don’t give a half-hearted effort. When we say yes, we mean yes. We show up and we take care of business not because we want a reward, but because we are men of action!

READ AND DISCUSS

Read Matthew 21:28-32

Why was the man in this story more pleased with the son who said he wouldn’t help?

In what way did the Pharisees fail to do what they pledged they would do for God?

What was Jesus trying to tell the Pharisees – and us – in this parable?

Read Matthew 5:33-37

How does Jesus want us to answer requests from others?

Why do you think Jesus said we should not swear oaths or make vows?

What does God want to see us do rather than making promises?

CHALLENGE

How often do you say you will pray someone and you never do?

How often do you say yes to something only to back out or drop the ball later?

How can saying “Yes” and backing out later hurt our witness for Christ?

When people say yes and don’t mean it, there is usually a reason. Some are people pleasers. Some are just following the crowd. Some are afraid to say no, and some are just being polite. What causes you to say yes when you’d rather say no?

Why do you think saying “No” is such a struggle for people in general?

Is it ever okay to say “No” to praying for someone? How can we make sure that particular yes is one we always fulfill?

When people ask for more than prayer, how can we gracefully say “No” when we need to say no?

At the end of the day, what do you think makes more impact – telling someone we will help, or actually helping out?

WRAP UP

God didn’t call us to be people of words. He wants us to be men of action. When you say yes, don’t look for excuses, and don’t give a half-hearted effort. Let your yes be yes, and follow through.

Don’t over-commit yourself, and be honest from the start when you are unable to lend a hand. As Jesus said, it’s better to say no and then help out than to let someone down with a polite yes.

In the words of St. Francis of Assisi, “Preach the Gospel at all times and when necessary use words.” Don’t be a man of empty words. Preach the gospel by your actions!

PRAYER

Dear God,

Make us men who do what we say, and do everything we undertake as if we were working for you. Forgive us for the times we fall short. Teach us to say no when necessary, and use us to spread your Word through our actions.

In Jesus’s name,
Amen

Scotty Love: Integrity

This week, Scotty Love does what he does best: shoots his mouth off on a topic he knows nothing about. Share and enjoy!

LESSON EIGHT
Liar Liar
Key Scripture: Proverbs 6:16-19, Colossians 3:9-10.

If you could choose one profession – lawyer, politician, Hollywood actor – whom would you say you least respect as a group?

What is it about those groups that makes them so hard to respect?

Who is someone you know that you admire and respect? What makes that person so admirable?

INTRODUCTION

Integrity is one of the rarest and most valuable characteristics a man can have. It’s also one of the most fragile. Integrity takes a lifetime to establish and build, but it only takes one mistake to destroy.

What’s more, one person’s stumble can be the downfall for an entire group. We assume all politicians lie because we’ve seen so many lie. And we assume all Hollywood actors to be hypocritical, drugged out train wrecks because so many turned out to be just that. And many people assume all Christians are hypocrites because they’ve met people like Scotty Love.

The world has come to a point where pretty much everyone is expected to lie and fudge a little. God wants us to be different. He wants us to stand out. Nothing will make us stand out more than being men of integrity, men our families, churches, co-workers, and friends can always trust.

READ AND DISCUSS

Read Proverbs 6:16-19

What does God think of lying?

What are some of the other things God hates as much as lying?

Why do you think God equates lying to shedding innocent blood, plotting evil, or causing divisions and discord?

Do you think this hatred extends to little white lies, half truths, and the like? Why or why not?

What other ways do we deceive people besides lying?

Read Colossians 3:9-10

Why is it incumbent on Christians to be people who tell the truth?

CHALLENGE

What are some of the reasons why people tell lies?

Why would Christians lie to one another?

Has someone you know or admire ever let you down by having their lack of integrity exposed?

What did it take for that person to regain your trust – or did they?

Why is it so hard to put faith in people who have deceived us?

Is lying essential in certain careers? Why or why not?

Is it possible to be completely truthful no matter what your occupation? What consequences might a person suffer for being honest at all times?

Are those consequences worth the loss of integrity?

Is there anything you’d trade your integrity to gain? What else might you lose in addition to your integrity if you did?

WRAP UP

Being honest can cost you dearly. It can cost you money, your job, or any number of worldly desires. But once you’ve sold your integrity for worldly gain, it’s nearly impossible to get back. A good reputation is the most valuable resource in the world. Not only does it mark you as a man who can be trusted, it makes you a light for Christ in a world of liars. Don’t trade your integrity for temporary gains. Stay honest, be truthful, and store your treasure up in Heaven.

PRAYER

Dear God,

Forgive us for the times we compromise and choose worldly things over you. Give us the courage to tell the truth and be different, and help us to guard our reputations as godly husbands, fathers, and men.

In Jesus’s name,
Amen

Scotty Love: Guard Your Heart

Week seven of the Scotty Love series is all about guarding your heart. That pesky little rule about purity of thought doesn’t end when you get married, guys. Share and enjoy!

LESSON SEVEN
Guard Your Heart
Key Scripture: 1 Corinthians 6:12-20, Matthew 5:27-28.

ICE BREAKERS

What’s your favorite guilty pleasure food?

Do you have a guilty pleasure movie or TV show? What is it? What is it about that movie/show you love?

What other guilty pleasures do you enjoy?

INTRODUCTION

As Christians we know that Jesus has paid the price for our sin, but Paul urged the early church not to take their forgiven status for granted. The blood of Christ doesn’t give us a license to sin. Jesus wants us to be transformed from the inside out. Keeping our insides cleaned requires us to put a filter on all we bring into our hearts.

It’s harder than ever to keep our hearts pure because technology has made sinful material so much easier to access. Hardcore porn is available free of charge, 24/7, on any device. Many men truly believe that anything other than the physical act of adultery is acceptable, but Jesus doesn’t give us that option. (Matthew 5:28.) We need to guard our hearts and minds, and that starts by guarding our eyes and ears.

READ AND DISCUSS

Read 1 Corinthians 6:12-20

What does Paul mean when he says everything is permissible but not beneficial?

What does Paul say about our bodies?

What does God want our bodies for?

Re-read verse 15, then read Matthew 5:27-28.

How do these verses re-define the sin of adultery?

Why is it important that we not merely avoid the physical act of adultery but avoid lusting in our minds?

Do you think sinful thoughts lead to sinful actions? Why or why not?

CHALLENGE

Honesty time: how many of you have seen porn on the Internet, either intentionally or by accident?

How many of you have intentionally looked for porn on the Internet or other outlets? How quickly can you find it if you want it?

Has pornographic material had an impact on your relationships with women? How so?

Many of the women and men involved on porn sites are not there because they want to be. They are overseas, where laws are different, and they are forced to do such work. Those that work in this country are often victims of abuse, many have addictions to drugs and alcohol, and many suffer from STDs. How does patronizing such material perpetuate the suffering of these people and others trapped in the sex trade?

When are you the most tempted to look at something pornographic?

Have any of you used any filters or other safeguards to help avoid that temptation?

What can we do to keep each other accountable so that we will not be tempted to sin?

WRAP UP

Anyone who believes porn is a victimless, private affair is deceiving themselves. Over time porn can lead to a lack of satisfaction with your wife, and it can lead you to cross over to the physical act of adultery.

What’s more, porn helps to fuel the multi-billion dollar sex industries around the world including porn, prostitution, and sex slavery. When we give our money or just our time to porn, we are not merely committing adultery. We are just as guilty to exploiting those trapped in sex slavery as those who put them there.

Make a commitment to keep your heart and mind pure. Do it for God, and for your spouse. Do it for those who are held captive in a life they can’t escape. When the temptation comes, pray for God to give you strength, and pray for God to end the sex trade for good.

PRAYER

Dear God,

Forgive us for giving our bodies and minds over to sin. Teach us to be strong, to run to you when we are tempted. Help us keep our minds and bodies pure. We pray too for those trapped in sex trafficking. We ask you to bring an end to sex trafficking, and we ask that you will use us to educate others about this horrible crime.

In Jesus’s name,
Amen

Scotty Love: The Single Life

This week on The Scotty Love Show, Scotty weighs in on being single. Share and enjoy!

LESSON SIX
Flying Solo
Key Scripture: 1 Corinthians 7:32-35

ICE BREAKERS

Married guys: What are some things you miss about being single? (Things that you could do before but rarely/never do now.)

Single guys: What are the things you least enjoy about being single?

Married guys: How many of you wish you’d enjoyed your singleness more when you had it and taken more advantage of that freedom you had?

INTRODUCTION

Every church has a different way of handling singles. Some churches offer them special programs. Many don’t. Many of those who offer programs do so to help singles hook up and find their perfect helpmate, but is that truly what God wants the church to do for singles?

Paul had some sharp words for singles, and for those who see singles as “incomplete.”  Single people are better able to respond to the call of the Lord. They have no attachments and no familial obligations that would keep so many married people from answering the call of God. They are better suited for missions, here and abroad, and for ministries that demand a great deal of the folks who undertake them.

Singles need Jesus more than anything else. They need spiritual encouragement more than they need a soulmate. Let’s take an honest look at how we and our church view singles and see if God might have us change the way we treat his singles.

READ AND DISCUSS

Read 1 Corinthians 7:32-35

What are some of the arguments you’ve heard for getting married young?

What are some of the negatives about getting married young?

Married guys: Why do you think married people are so inclined to want to “pair up” their single friends?

Single guys: How does it make you feel when someone comes up and offers to hook you up with the “perfect” person?

Married guys: What are some things you can’t do for the Lord because you are married?

Single guys: Are there any ministry activities you couldn’t do if you were married?

Single guys: What are some of the temptations you face as a single person that make it harder to follow God?

Married guys: Have those temptations decreased, stayed the same, or increased since you got married?

Single guys: What are some things you wish your married friends understood about you and being single?

Married guys: Are there any lessons you learned from singleness or married life you’d like single guys to know?

How is our church serving the needs of singles?

Are we lifting them up spiritually, are we just facilitating a “meat market,” or are we leaving them to their own devices?

Why do you think so many churches neglect the spiritual growth of single people?

How can we as a church better meet the spiritual needs of singles?

How can we as a group encourage the single men in our group and the rest of our church?

WRAP UP

God has a plan for every stage of our lives. That includes being married and having a family, and the time that comes before – being single.

If you’re married, don’t be the guy who convinces God’s servant to rush into something ahead of God’s time. And if you’re single, don’t be rushed by peer pressure or loneliness. Commit your heart to the Lord. Serve where he leads. Be content to wait on his choice for you. And be nice to your married friends. They do mean well, even if they are misguided.

PRAYER

Dear God,

Thank you for the way you speak to us at every stage of our lives. Bless the singles in our group and in our church. Help our singles to stay focused on you, and help our married couples to encourage singles to keep you first in their lives.

In Jesus’s name,
Amen

The Scotty Love Show: How to Judge Others.

Sorry for the short hiatus… The Scotty Love Show is back with part five. This week, Scotty teaches you the proper way for judging your neighbor.

Share and enjoy!

LESSON FIVE
Judgment Call
Key Scripture: Luke 18:9-14, Matthew 7:1-5

ICE BREAKERS

When you watch a movie trailer, how do you decide whether a movie looks good or looks like a pass?

When a new restaurant opens up in town, how do you decide whether or not you will check it out?

When was the last time you saw/heard a new music artist that you really, REALLY didn’t like? What was it that made you decide you disliked them?

INTRODUCTION

Every day we make judgments. We judge movies based on their posters and trailers. We judge restaurants by their appearance and commercials. We judge musicians based on their looks as much as their musical ability (or lack thereof). We all have certain tastes – things we like and dislike – and we use those standards to judge everything from pop culture to new technologies to people.

Some people make a good living by making judgments about other people. Hiring managers and temp agencies are trained to identify qualified, motivated workers who fit an organization’s goals and culture. These people have to be picky; their jobs and their companies’ futures depend on it. But the same is not true for the church.

As Christians we are to love the world as Christ did, welcoming sinners and lepers and everything in between without question. But how good are we really when it comes to welcoming one and all to God’s house on Sunday?

READ AND DISCUSS

Read Luke 18:9-14

How would the people listening to Jesus tell this parable have viewed the two men in this story?

If Jesus were telling the story today, who might he have used as examples of the Pharisee and the sinful man?

How did Jesus’s appraisal of these two men differ from the way his listeners judged them?

Going back to our movie question – have you ever found a movie to be less than you expected based on its trailer? What movie was it, and why were you so disappointed?

What flaw does this parable expose about judging people based on their appearance?

Read Matthew 7:1-5

Why does Jesus advise us not to pass judgment on others?

How does Jesus say he will judge us?

CHALLENGE

What standards do you see people using to judge new comers in our own church?

Do you think the people in our church “screen” visitors before really reaching out to them?

Judging others isn’t restricted to visitors. How do you hear people judging (or should we say gossiping) about their brothers and sisters in Christ?

What kind of damage can such judgments do to our church family?

How can judging others, visitor or member, cause damage to the people we judge?

How do you think God wants visitors and those outside our church to view us as a church body?

How do you think people outside the church actually view us?

Changing the way our church judges others begins with us as individuals. What can we do as individuals to stem the tide of judging others?

Can we come up with a gentle way to steer other people away from gossip and judgment when we hear it?

WRAP UP

Becoming a more loving, less judging church has to begin here with us. If we don’t change, we can’t expect others to change. The people outside this church are no more sinful than those of us inside the church. We need to remember that Jesus died for them the same as he did for us, and we need to remember we are no better than they in the eyes of God.

Let’s pray that God will make us a more welcoming people, beginning with our group and our families, and pray that as a church, we will be a body that welcomes everyone in Jesus’s name.

PRAYER

Dear God,

Forgive us for the way we have judged others. We know that we are all sinners, and none of us are better than anyone else who walks through our church doors. Give us open hearts to welcome everyone you send our way.

In Jesus’s name,
Amen

Free Skit: World’s Fastest House Warming Party

Jeff and Addie are friends of mine in real life. I certainly hope they’ve never been to a party like this, but I’m pretty sure this is how it would go down if they did. Share and enjoy.

World’s Fastest House Warming Party
By John Cosper

CHARACTERS
Todd- A foolish builder
Ron- A wise builder
Jeff and Addie – Neighbors
Other party guests

Tables are set on on stage with drinks, snacks, etc. A sprinkling of party guests are on stage enjoying the food and drink. Todd has a tray of hors d’oeuvres and is serving as the lights come up. Jeff and Addie enter.

TODD: Hi there.
JEFF: Hello. Is this the house warming party?
TODD: Yes it is. I’m Todd Maxwell, and you are?
JEFF: I’m Jeff, and this is my wife Addie.
ADDIE: Hello.
TODD: Hello, thank you for coming. Care for an hors d’oeuvres?
ADDIE: Ohh, thank you.
JEFF: So you’re the guy who built the house?
TODD: Yes, sir, I am. How do you like it?
JEFF: I love it.
ADDIE: It’s so beautiful!
JEFF: Is this real marble we’re standing on?
TODD: It is! I ordered that special from Italy.
ADDIE: It’s gorgeous.
JEFF: I told you we need to do this when we re-do our kitchen.
TODD: Have a look around. I spared no expense, from the foundation up to the attic.
ADDIE: It’s all very lovely.
JEFF: Yeah. There’s just one thing I don’t get. Why did you build your house down here on the beach and not up on the rock?
TODD: (laughs) Have a drink, folks, enjoy the party.
JEFF: But I–
ADDIE: Oh, look, Jeffy, they have Near Beer!

Addie and Jeff walk over to a table to get some drinks. Ron enters.

RON: Hello, Todd.
TODD: Hey there, Ron. How are you?
RON: So, you really did it. You built your house.
TODD: It’s a beauty, isn’t it?
RON: It is… for now.
TODD: Still don’t believe it’s going to last?
RON: I told you from the beginning, for a few dollars more, you could have built on the rock up the hill next to mine.
TODD: Have an hors d’oeuvres and stop worrying. This house isn’t going anywhere.

There’s a gust of wind, loud crack, crumble, and crash sound, followed by a scream. Jeff walks over to Todd.

JEFF: Hey, buddy, I think the bedrooms on the back of your house just broke off and fell into the sand.
TODD: Nonsense, Jim.
JEFF: It’s Jeff.
TODD: Have another hors d’oeuvres and enjoy yourself.

Jeff walks away with an hors d’oeuvres. Addie excuses herself silently and exits.

RON: This is what I was talking about. This house won’t stay very long on the sand. There’s a pretty strong wind blowing out there, and all this marble and stone and brick is only going to make it sink faster.
TODD: Don’t you have a place of your own to hang out?
RON: I do, and if you’re smart, you and all these people will move this party up to my house. I’ll fire up the grill.
TODD: I already have a grill fired up out back.

There’s a gust of wind, loud crack, crumble, and crash sound, followed by a scream. Jeff walks over to Todd.

JEFF: Hey, buddy, your back porch just fell off your house into the sand. I think it’s on fire!
RON: There goes the grill.
TODD: Everybody just calm down. This house isn’t going anywhere. It’s solid marble.

There’s a gust of wind, loud crack, crumble, and crash sound, followed by a scream. Jeff runs to stage left and looks.

RON: There goes another one.
JEFF: Hey, buddy! Your bathroom just fell into the sand – with my wife in it! Addie!

Jeff runs off stage.

RON: Okay, Todd, party’s over. Everyone, we’re getting out of here, now!

All the party guests exit quickly, ignoring Todd.

TODD: Don’t listen to this know-it-all! He’s just trying to steal my thunder. He can’t stand that I built a better house here on the sand and proved him wrong!

There’s a gust of wind, loud crack, crumble, and crash sound, followed by a scream. Jeff and Addie walk through. Addie is completely covered in sand and dirt and looks like Pig Pen as she crosses.

ADDIE: Bye bye, everybody! Thanks for the hors d’oeuvres!

Jeff and Addie exit.

RON: Are you coming?
TODD: No way! I’m staying right here.
RON: Okay, then. Good luck!

Ron exits.

TODD: I don’t need luck! I have a beautiful house, and it doesn’t matter what I built it on. Nothing’s gonna take this house –

There’s a gust of wind, loud crack, crumble, and crash sound, followed by a blackout on stage.

JEFF: (a long way off) Hey buddy, you okay down there?
TODD: (clicks on a lighter) Great! Never better. Would one of you mind cutting a hole in my roof?

Free Skit – “If It Feels Good”

We got in trouble with this skit once. I think the skit speaks for itself without coming out and saying what the message is, but apparently there are some people out there who would prefer that you come out and teach a lesson during or after a skit rather than having to read between the lines.

I have a feeling those people would have hated Jesus’s sermons.

Here’s one of my all-time favorites, and a favorite of the touring company. And no, I’m not going to come out and say what it means here either.

Share and enjoy.

If It Feels Good
By John Cosper

THEME: Relativism and morality

CHARACTERS
Simon- A new age thinker
Lenny- A passer-by
Chuck- A cop

(Simon is on stage, holding a sign that says, “If it feels good, do it.” Lenny enters, reads the sign.)

LENNY- Hi there.
SIMON- Hi.
LENNY- What’s this, a political protest?
SIMON- Kind of. More of a moral protest.
LENNY- I see. What does it mean?
SIMON- I’m protesting the notion that there’s an absolute set of morals that determine
what’s right and wrong for everyone.
LENNY- Sorry, you lost me. Care to explain in English?
SIMON- Well, see, just because of the Bible and the silly 10 commandments, people
think there’s only one set of morals for all of us to follow. But you can’t expect everyone to live by the same set of morals, can you?
LENNY- I don’t know, can you?
SIMON- Of course not. I believe each individual has the right to make up his own mind
what’s right and wrong, and to stick by those values.
LENNY- In other words, if it feels good, do it.
SIMON- Exactly.
LENNY- I see.

(Pause, then Lenny punches Simon in the face.)

SIMON- OWW… what was that for?
LENNY- Just following your advice. You know back in school one day I asked a bully
why he was beating my face in, and he said it felt good and you know what? (punches Simon again) He was right!
SIMON- Oh, my face?
LENNY- I wonder if it feels as good in the (punches Simon in the–) stomach! And a (karate chops Simon on the back, who falls) chop to the back!
SIMON- Ohhhhhh!!!
LENNY- And a few kicks to the gut!!

(Lenny kicks Simon several times.)

LENNY- Wait right there. I want to try something else.

(Lenny runs off.)

SIMON- What are you doing? (sees Lenny off) Oh no.. no!!

(Lenny runs on with a folded metal chair and begins to beat Simon on the back as Simon howls.)

LENNY- Always thought that looked like fun on wrestling.
SIMON- Stop hurting me!!
LENNY- What?
SIMON- Stop hurting me!!
LENNY- Why should I?
SIMON- Because it’s wrong, you moron!
LENNY- Are you judging me? Are you persecuting me for my values?
SIMON- No, I… I just don’t want you to hurt me any more.
LENNY- But it (kick) feels (kick) so (kick) good!

(Chuck enters.)

CHUCK- Hey, hey, hey. What’s going on here?
SIMON- Oh… thank goodness you’re here. This guy’s beating me up for no reason.
CHUCK- Is that a fact?
LENNY- No, sir, officer. I’m simply acting on my moral convictions. I believe if it feels
good, you should do it.
CHUCK- And beating this guy up feels good?
LENNY- Oh yes, sir.
CHUCK- Who taught you that stupid philosophy?

(Lenny points at Simon.)

CHUCK- I see.
SIMON- What are you waiting for? Arrest him!
CHUCK- I can’t do that, sir. He’s got a constitutional right to freedom of religion.
SIMON- What? You must be mad.
CHUCK- Hey, don’t take that attitude. Look at the bright side. (pulls out his billy club) You made two converts tonight.
SIMON- Oh no, not you!

(Chuck beats Simon with the club. Lenny kicks Simon. Simon howls in pain.)

CHUCK- Hey, you were right, man. This does feel good.
LENNY- You know what would feel really good? Tossing him off a bridge.

(They look at Simon with evil grins.)

SIMON- Oh no.
CHUCK- Let’s do it!

(They pick up Simon and carry him off.)

SIMON- Wait!!! I changed my mind!! Let me go! I can’t swim!

The Scotty Love Show: Wife-Speak

Scotty Love and his lovely wife return this week with a lesson on how (not) to love your wife.

Share and enjoy!

LESSON FOUR
Loving Your Wife
Key Scripture: Ephesians 5:25-33

ICE BREAKERS

1. What’s the dumbest thing you’ve ever said to your wife?

2. What words or topics or triggers do you avoid with your wife because you know it’s not a place you want to go?

3. When you’re in the dog house, what’s your go-to move to get out of it?

INTRODUCTION

Have you ever thought that women should come with an instruction manual? How nice would it be to have a booklet or even a cheat sheet to help you interpret every word and action? Never again would you be caught off guard when she’s suddenly mad at you. Never again would you make things worse by asking, “Are you mad at me?” Never again would you get caught in that downward spiral where every thing you say just makes things worse.

Women are not cars, or stereos, or computers, or anything else that comes with a manual. They don’t have warning lights or secret code words. They are different than us in how they think and communicate, and they don’t especially like being analyzed like a piece of electronics. They want to be respected, understood, and loved just as we do.

READ AND DISCUSS

Read Ephesians 6:25-33

How does God want us to love our wives?

Read Romans 5:8

How much did God do for the people he made his church?

Do you think God gave us this parallel to show us how he loves us or to teach us how we should love our wives? Why?

How many of you sacrificed some of your time – guy time – in the last week?

If Ephesians 6 is the standard job description for being a good husband, how do you think your wife would rate your job performance on a scale of 1 to 10?

CHALLENGE

What was it about your wife that first attracted you to her?

When was it that you knew that you wanted to marry your wife? How did you know?

Are you ever reminded of the woman you first fell in love with these days? What triggers you to see her as that same girl you wanted to propose to all those years ago?

What are some things you can do to become better helpers to your wife?

How can you become a better friend and partner to your wife?

Are there things in your relationship that are more likely to trigger fights? Can you think of any strategies to help you avoid negative conflicts (or help others in this group to do so)?

What little sacrifice could you make this week to give her a romantic surprise and (maybe) reminder of the guy she wanted to marry?

Will you do it?

WRAP UP

It doesn’t take much some days to show your wife you love her, but it does require an effort on our parts. Don’t take her for granted. And don’t try to work her like a machine. Remember the wife of your youth (Proverbs 5:18). Remember the vow you made to be her partner. And never be shy about sacrificing for her, just as Jesus did for us.

PRAYER

Dear God,

Forgive us for the times we take our wives for granted. Forgive us for phoning in our marital duties and not paying enough attention to our wives’ needs. Help us to love and cherish them as you loved us, and give us strong marriages so we can withstand the hard times in life.

In Jesus’s name,
Amen

The Scotty Love Show: Parenting

Ladies and gents, it’s time for your weekly dose of wisdom from the lips of Scotty Love. This week, Scotty and his daughter shed some light on parenting – the wrong way.

The Scotty Love Show is a 12 part video Bible study designed for men’s groups, using humor and Bible study to help men become better leaders, servants, and followers of Christ.

Share and enjoy!

LESSON THREE
Loving Your Kids
Key Scripture: Proverbs 1:8-9, Ephesians 6:4, Proverbs 22:6.

ICE BREAKERS

What’s one of your favorite memories with your Mom or Dad?

Do you remember a time when your parents got really angry with you? What did you do, and how did they handle it?

Did you ever bust your parents doing something they should not have done – or that they would not have let you do? What was it? How did they respond?

INTRODUCTION

Of all the titles you will hold in your life, “father” is far and away the most challenging. It’s also one of the most important. In addition to caring, nurturing, and providing for the physical needs of their children, God gave parents the awesome responsibility of teaching those children to walk in the steps of Jesus.

Teaching kids to follow Jesus isn’t as simple as telling them what to do. You have to model it. Kids are always watching, and when they see a parent who doesn’t practice what they preach, it can kill their faith. Our children need us to teach them God’s Word. They need us to be active in their lives, not lecturing from a distance. And they need us to live the life we want them to emulate – which means we need to live the way Christ taught us to live!

READ AND DISCUSS

Read Proverbs 1:8-9

What does Solomon’s instruction for his son tell us about the job of being a parent?

What instructions does God expect parents to give to their children?

Why did God give this job to parents, and not to teachers or pastors or someone outside the home?

Read Ephesians 6:4

What does it mean to exasperate our children?

What are some of the ways we frustrate our kids with our instructions, rules, and teaching?

Why is it critical for parents to make time for their kids?

Why is living what we preach more important than the preaching part? Do kids learn more from words or actions?

CHALLENGE

Do you remember any instances of your parents telling you, “Do as I say, not as I do?”

Dads: Can you think of any examples of a time when you exasperated your kids, either through your own impatience, anger, or bad example?

How can we address our mistakes with our kids to show them we know we did wrong and want to do better?

Dads: How hard is it to make time to play with your kids?

What are some things you have in common with your children, activities you can do together? If you’re not a parent yet, what are some hobbies you hope to share with your kids?

How can you use that hobby to teach spiritual lessons? Brainstorm together to find ways that fun time can also be a time to build faith.

Are there some areas in your life you need to straighten out so you can be a better example to your kids?

Dads: What steps are you going to make this week to become a better Dad?

Non-Dads: What can you do now to prepare yourself to be the best Dad you can be?

WRAP UP

Your kids are your most important investment – more than any savings or retirement fund or even your old comic book collection. They are the future of the church and the future of this world. As someone once handed their faith down to you, it’s up to you to pass that faith on to your children.

Make time for your kids. Teach them what the Word of God says. Then live it every day. When you mess up, don’t sweep it under the rug. Confess your sin, tell your kids you know you messed up, and let them see a real effort from you to set things right.

Read Proverbs 22:6.

Train your kids by setting the example for them with your life. You may not see it, but they really are paying attention!

PRAYER

Dear God,

Thank you for the gift of children. Forgive us for the times we fail you and our kids. Teach us how to set the example in our homes by living like Christ. Let our kids see a life in us that they will copy as they grow older.

In Jesus’s name,
Amen

Free Skit About Hosea

I’m a day late, as I try to get these up on Sunday nights, but here is this week’s free skit. This one’s brand new. It’s the one for all of you who have said to yourself, “You know the one thing I can never find is a good skit about the story of Hosea.”

Share and enjoy.

Hosea’s Kids
By John Cosper
www.righteousinsanity.com

THEME: Hosea

CHARACTERS
Jezreel
Not Loved
Not My Kid

Jezreel walks on stage.

JEZREEL: Growing up in Israel, I had friends with normal names and normal meanings. My friend John’s name means God is gracious. My buddy Matthew’s name means Gift of God. My name is Jezreel. Jezreel doesn’t mean anything special like John or Matthew. Jezreel was a battlefield where the wicked King Ahab and his wife Jezebel slaughtered a bunch of God’s prophets. My father was a prophet too, and he gave me that name to tell the people of Israel that they would soon suffer just as the prophets did under Ahab. Dad made his point, but he also made life miserable for me. Elementary school is bad enough without being named for an unfortunate chapter in your country’s history. I thought I had it bad. Then my sister came along.

Not Loved enters.

NOT LOVED: Hi. My name is Not Loved.

JEZREEL: Hey sis.

NOT LOVED: Hey, Jezreel. My name is actually pronounced Lo-Ruhamah, but the kids in school had trouble pronouncing all that. So they called me Not Loved. “Wow, your parents must really hate you!” They told me. “Not Loved! She’s not loved! Hey, who has two thumbs and isn’t loved? That girl! Ha ha ha!” Jezreel had it easy compared to me. But even I had it easy compared to our baby brother.

Not My Kid enters.

NOT MY KID: Hi, my name is… Not My Kid.

JEZREEL/NOT LOVED: Hey, bro.

NOT MY KID: ‘Sup, guys? My full name is Lo-Ammi, but like my sister, the kids preferred to call me by what my name means. Dad was sending a message to Israel. He wanted them to know that he did not love the things they had done. He wanted them to know he had rejected them as his people. I’m sure he and God had good intentions, but it’s pretty rough having a name like Not My Kid! Every day, it was the same thing at after school pick up. “I’m here to get my son. He’s Not My Kid.” Mrs. McKimson was terribly confused.

JEZREEL: Don’t get us wrong. Dad was a really good father. He played with us. He read to us. He took us on hikes. He taught us about God. But we all had a chip on our shoulder because of the names he gave us.

NOT LOVED: Dad told me every night that he loved me. But he named me Not Loved. How am I supposed to deal with that?

NOT MY KID: We all had trouble dealing with our names. It wasn’t easy being living prophecies of doom. We were meant to remind everyone that God’s judgment was coming. Doesn’t make you the most popular kid at the party.

JEZREEL: Then God gave our Dad another message. It was about Mom.

NOT LOVED: Mom wasn’t the good parent Dad was. She definitely wasn’t a good wife. She was unfaithful to Dad almost from the beginning.

NOT MY KID: He knew what kind of person she was before he married her. God told him to marry her, and he listened. He always listened when God spoke.

JEZREEL: It wasn’t a surprise to anyone when Mom left him for other men. But what was a surprise was what Dad did about it.

NOT LOVED: She was put up for sale. Like a slave. Nothing but a piece of property. He bought her, and he brought her home.

NOT MY KID: God had given Dad another message. Yes, Israel had been unfaithful. Yes, he had rejected Israel. But he would not reject Israel forever. God still loved her, and he always would.

JEZREEL: My name is Jezreel. My name reminds people of a terrible thing they did. I have a sister named Not Loved and a brother named Not My Kid. But we have a father who loves us as much as any father ever loved his kids.

NOT LOVED: He loves our Mom, too, and he always will.

NOT MY KID: And as much as he loves us, God loves us more.

JEZREEL: It isn’t easy being the child of a prophet. And it isn’t easy having a rotten name like Jezreel.

NOT LOVED: Or Not Loved.

NOT MY KID: Or Not My Kid.

JEZREEL: But we are forever thankful to be children of God. No matter what happens, we know he will always love us. Just like our dad.