“Pursuing righteousness leads to God’s best.” It almost sounds like if you do everything “right” life will be easy. Not quite. We still live in a broken world where things can and will go wrong. And fun fact: we are all sinners, so we will never do anything perfectly on this side of heaven. But God intends good for us, even in the face of hardship. So, pursuing righteousness and living His way will ultimately be what is best for us. Life will still have its ups and downs. Let’s not add to our despair by ignoring God’s commands that He says will bring us joy. Do you trust Him? Then ask Him to help you pursue righteousness today!
RIGHTEOUSNESS: Being declared right in God's sight and living in a way that honors Him
MEMORY VERSE: “May you always be filled with the fruit of your salvation - the righteous character produced in your life by Jesus Christ - for this will bring much glory and praise to God." Philippians 1:11
This Week’s Finish Line: Pursuing Righteousness Leads to God's Best
Soon after rescuing His people, the Israelites, out of slavery in Egypt, God wanted to show them the right way to live that honored Him. God loved His people so much and wanted what was best for them, so He called Moses up to Mount Sinai to give him the Law. Sadly, while Moses was gone, the Israelites went to Aaron, Moses’ brother, and asked him to make a god they could see. They brought him gold and he made an idol in the shape of a calf. They threw a big party and worshipped their new fake god. This broke the first two commandments God had just given the Israelites: worship only God and don’t make idols. Although God showed mercy, there were still consequences for Israel’s sin. Sin is a big deal to God because it breaks our relationship with Him. He wants us to pursue righteousness and trust that our all-knowing and loving God really does know what is best.
- Did the Israelites choose to purse righteousness and God’s best OR did they choose to go their own way? How? (They made an idol, a fake god, and worshipped it instead of the one true God. They broke the first commandment!)
- Why did God give the Israelites the 10 Commandments and want them to live His way? (He loved them so much and knew the best way to live because He is all-knowing. He wanted to have a relationship with them, and the Law showed them how.)
- Do you think God loves us and still knows what’s best for us? Why? What are something other things you know are true about God that help you trust His way is best?
*Check out our vision for parents and how to use these activities each week.
Teacher: Meal Time
When you are at the dinner table with your family, look up Exodus 20:1-6 and have a family discussion. What were the first 2 commands God had given the Israelites? (He told them not to have any other gods but Him and not to make an idol and worship it.) When the Israelites made an idol, they pursued their own way instead of what God said was best. Is there a time you have chosen NOT to pursue what you knew was right/God’s best? What happened and what wisdom would you remind yourself of if faced with that situation again? Why does God know what’s best? Do you trust that God knows best? How do you live that out in your life?
Friend: Drive Time
Play “Spot the Lie” together. All around us, there are ads, commercials, stores, etc. that are trying to convince us to pursue a lot of things other than God. As you are out and about this week, see who can be the first to spot something that tells the lie, “Pursue this instead of (or apart from) God and you’ll find happiness.” You’ll spot a lot of things that will tempt you to pursue wealth to find contentment, experiences to find happiness, and other ways to look for satisfaction outside of what God says is best. Talk about why those things are lies (ex: they’re temporary) and see if anyone can remember a verse from God’s Word that tells the truth.
Counselor: Bed Time
We are talking about living righteously this month, but it’s impossible to do so apart from God. Before bed, spend time reminding one another that righteous character is produced by Jesus as a fruit of our salvation. And righteous character brings glory to God through how we live as an act of daily worship and showing others what He’s like! Then pray for one another using this month’s memory verse.
*“May you always be filled with the fruit of your salvation - the righteous character produced in your life by Jesus Christ - for this will bring much glory and praise to God.” * Philippians 1:11
Watch the story of the Golden Calf together as a family this week. Then spend time asking each other the following questions:
- What do you think it means to pursue righteousness? (To seek to know what God says is best and live in a way that honors Him.)
- How can we seek what God says is best? (Read His Word, pray, and get counsel from other believers!)
- Is there a certain situation right now where you need help figuring out how to live righteously?
Pray and ask God to help you trust that His way is always best.
Next week we will learn how God's Word teaches us how to live righteously.