Faithfulness is highly regarded throughout the Bible.
We study the lives of those who faced difficult trials, persecution, and even death, and still remained faithful to God.
And God’s faithfulness towards us provides a model that we can follow in our relationships with others and with Him.
Use this preteen lesson on faithfulness to remind students that when we are faithful, we show God and others that we can be trusted.
- Nick Diliberto, Preteen Ministry
P.S. - The Everything Preteen Bundle is back now through this Thursday night (May 23). Save 92% on 4 years of preteen ministry curriculum. Don't miss it.
PRETEEN LESSON ON FAITHFULNESS
Bible: Matthew 25:14-23; Galatians 5:22; Colossians 3:23
Bottom Line: When we are faithful, we show God and others we can be trusted.
- Long table
OPENING GAME: SHOW ME THE “DOUGH”
Set up a table at the front of your youth space.
Give a leader a stopwatch/timer to use throughout the game.
Choose 2 students to come to the front and give each a small tub of playdoh.
HOW TO PLAY THE GAME
Instruct the students to create something, anything, with the playdoh and set a timer for one minute.
Be sure to reserve a ball of playdoh for yourself, but don’t do anything with it during the game.
As an added variation and to involve more students, make teams and have students work together to create a more complex masterpiece.
When time is up, have each student or each group describe what they created.
When each person has shared, show your ball of playdoh that you did nothing with.
Share with your students that what they created has meaning and purpose.
What you created does no one any good.
God entrusts us with abilities and responsibilities so that we can advance the kingdom.
If we choose to do nothing with what God has given us, we won’t fulfill our purpose.
However, when we are faithful, we show God and others that we can be trusted.
Read Matthew 25:14-23.
“Again, the Kingdom of Heaven can be illustrated by the story of a man going on a long trip.
He called together his servants and entrusted his money to them while he was gone.
He gave five bags of silver to one, two bags of silver to another, and one bag of silver to the last—dividing it in proportion to their abilities. He then left on his trip.
“The servant who received the five bags of silver began to invest the money and earned five more.
The servant with two bags of silver also went to work and earned two more.
But the servant who received the one bag of silver dug a hole in the ground and hid the master’s money.
“After a long time their master returned from his trip and called them to give an account of how they had used his money.
The servant to whom he had entrusted the five bags of silver came forward with five more and said, ‘Master, you gave me five bags of silver to invest, and I have earned five more.’
“The master was full of praise. ‘Well done, my good and faithful servant. You have been faithful in handling this small amount, so now I will give you many more responsibilities. Let’s celebrate together!’
“The servant who had received the two bags of silver came forward and said, ‘Master, you gave me two bags of silver to invest, and I have earned two more.’
“The master said, ‘Well done, my good and faithful servant. You have been faithful in handling this small amount, so now I will give you many more responsibilities.
Let’s celebrate together!’
Say: Our faithfulness says a lot about us.
Sometimes, faithfulness means abandoning fear and going for it.
When we explore a new interest or even a new activity that we’ve never tried before, it is normal to be tempted to let things get in the way of following through with our initial intentions.
Think of the first time you rode a rollercoaster.
Did you hop right on, putting all fear aside?
Or, were you coerced in to doing it, bribed even?
Just like the servant in this story who failed to be faithful with what he’d been given, we should not allow our fear or our laziness to hold us back from giving ourselves fully and faithfully to everything we do.
This includes how we serve at church and how be are at home and at school.
God has given each of us talents and resources.
We need to use them in a way that is pleasing to Him.
In fact, God gives us these talents so that we can use them to advance the Kingdom.
He is pleased when we are willing to use our talents and abilities to bring honor to His name.
In the Bible, we read about a rich man who owned many things.
As he was preparing to leave on a long journey, he called in his servants and entrusted each of them with varying amounts of talents.
In this parable, these talents were not “talents” like we would normally think of talents (such as being a good singer or baseball player).
In Jesus’ day, a talent was actually literally an amount of money.
In fact, a talent was a very large sum of money.
Some Bible scholars think that one talent of silver was valued at over a thousand dollars.
Although in Jesus’ day talents were literal large amounts of money, in this parable they represent “entrusted responsibilities.”
The “talents” these servants were entrusted with represent the time, energy, mind, bodies, abilities (talents), money, etc. that God has given to us to use for His glory.
The Bible says that each portion the master gave to his servants depended on their abilities.
To one servant he gave five talents, to a second two talents, and to the third servant, he gave one talent.
The Bible tells us that the first servant traded and doubled his talents, giving him a total of ten.
The second servant also traded and doubled his talents, giving him a total of four.
The third servant decided to dig a hole and he buried his one talent in the ground.
When the master returned, he came to his servants to check his wealth.
He was very pleased with the first servant for doubling his talents, saying to him, “Well done, you good and faithful servant. You have been faithful over a few things, so I will make you ruler over many things.”
He was also pleased with the second servant.
He said to him, “Well done good and faithful servant. You have been faithful over a few things, so I will make you a ruler over many things.”
The thirds servant came to his master and explained that he was afraid so he chose to bury his talent in the ground.
The master was very disappointed with him.
In the same way, God wants us to share and use the talents he has given us, not bury them in the ground.
When we are faithful, we show God and others we can be trusted.
In our lives today, if we give up without really trying or if we go half-way leaving our teammates or classmates hanging, we tell others that we are not dependable.
It shows that we can’t be trusted.
Faithfulness always follows through.
When we show that we are someone who can be counted on, we prove ourselves faithful.
God teaches us in Galatians 5:22 that faithfulness is a fruit of the spirit.
It’s part of the guidance for how we are to conduct our lives and our behavior.
Read Galatians 5:22 with your students.
But the Holy Spirit produces this kind of fruit in our lives: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness…
If we apply this to our lives today, we are to act according to Colossians 3:23.
Read Colossians 3:23
“Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters.”
If we take into account all of the talents and abilities God has given to us, and strive to use them to honor and glorify Him, he sees our faithfulness with those things.
When we are faithful in the small things, we show that we can be faithful with the large things.
When we are faithful, we show God and others we can be trusted.
Faithfulness implies stability, steadiness, certainty, and permanence.
Faithfulness never wavers.
Faithfulness is a foundation that can be safely built upon with no concern for changes in the future.
Faithfulness is a sure deal.
Close in prayer.
SMALL GROUP DISCUSSION QUESTIONS
- Are you more of a saver or a spender? How does it show up in your life?
- If you were to go away for a long time, who would you entrust to look after your things and why?
- What were the master’s expectations of his servants while he was away?
- If you were a servant who invested and doubled what was entrusted, how would you feel when the master commended you and gave you more responsibility?
- Why do you think the man in the story entrusted his servants with different amounts?
- In what way do you think you could better use something that God has given you to further the kingdom of heaven on earth?
- In what ways can we be faithful servants to God?
- Have you ever seen God use your talents and multiply them because of your faithfulness?
- Take some time to discuss the word stewardship. What does it mean? Why is it important?
- How can you pray for each other this week? In what ways can you maximize your Kingdom impact?
The Everything Preteen Bundle is back now through this Thursday night (May 23). Save 92% on 4 years of preteen ministry curriculum. Don't miss it.