Tonight after the usual “pre-game shenanigans” we reviewed our series 13 Reasons Why. We broke into groups, and each group chose a week to recap and then dramatized the lesson using kid's toys. As expected, it added quite a bit of laughter to break up some of the somberness of the serious topics we covered in the series.

The Mind of Christ

We started by reviewing “Lies of the Enemy vs The Mind of Christ.” It was summarized by saying that often times social media can distract us from the truth of God as it gives us a false sense of reality with untrue “friends” and “followers” as well as perceived success that may or may not exist. The mind of Christ brings contentment, while the lies of the enemy bring discontentment.

In a skit prepared by the first group, a Yoshi toy was shown to be a happy dinosaur, but would get his emotions wrapped up in seeing bad things happen in the world via social media. The store invented as an example was the Isis Hamburglar running people down with his car! Had Yoshi focused on the truth of God, he may have set down the social media and spent some time focusing on God to see the balance in the world and help balance his emotions about the bad things that happen.

A real-life story that showed this principle was told by someone who had just obtained a rather sophisticated wearable tech watch. She had struggled in getting healthier by checking social media for tips, tricks, and healthy meals. But since getting the watch, she has spent less time on social media and more time focusing on what she is doing and what her body is doing, changing the focus from “What are they doing that I should do?” to “What am I doing that works, and what doesn't work?” which has made all the difference.

Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.
— Romans 12:2 ESV
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Brutality & Kindness

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The next skit review was on “Brutality vs Kindness.” There is plenty of brutality in this world – from terrorism, to violent crime, even psychological brutality that can influence suicide (as was the case with the presenter's brother).

However, through the brutality of crucifixion also came the ultimate kindness, Jesus gave His life to rid us of our own brutal nature. With Jesus in our hearts, kindness becomes our nature. The main testimony from this lesson was how the speaker was transformed from an angry, impatient person to a man of kindness.

The dramatization involved a little guy down on his luck with a broken wagon, and while others scoffed, and kicked him while he was down, a kind alligator helped him back on his feet by fixing his wagon and giving him a tow.

He has told you, O man, what is good; and what does the Lord require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?
— Micah 6:8

Evil & Goodness

The third review presentation was about “Evil vs. Goodness.” Evil is clearly prevalent. Proverbs tells us that evil men care more about revenge than justice. But when they get away with it, don't fret because their demise is near. Evil can't exist within God's goodness. God hears all our prayers, and even in the tough times he shelters us from evil. In the dramatization there was evil hiding around every corner, whether a terrorist monster truck, or other evil doer, the good shepherd (or in this case, cattle wrangler) shelters us with his fence of goodness.

Evil men do not understand justice, but those who seek the Lord understand it completely.
— Proverbs 28:5
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Now, Put It into practice

Unless we are in the word of God and putting it into practice, we don't have the right foundation to regularly practice hopefulness, self-control, gentleness, goodness, kindness, and all the things we've been learning about. While these can be impersonated without God, they don't last when things get rough unless you have the foundation of faith. In this crazy world, the one thing we can control is to follow God and seek his wisdom.

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