(This particular lesson may take place beside/in an indoor pool)
Have participants begin the discussion by floating on a noodle or an inner tube. Participants do not have to be in the water to be a part of this discussion. They can sit on the side of the pool, or they can utilize tables and chairs. Be creative. If a pool is not present, a craft and/or activity idea is added at the end of this study for participants to enjoy in place of physical exercise.
Everyone will be in a different place spiritually; therefore, as participants share, encourage them to offer each other mercy and grace; especially during vulnerable moments or times of weakness. Our goal is never to fix anyone, but instead to listen and offer support when needed. Personal discussion, unless otherwise noted, should always remain confidential.
*There is 1 universe, 9 planets, 204 countries, 809 islands, 7 seas, and yet you exists in the midst of it all. You are part of God’s special plan. IF YOU HAVE A PULSE, YOU HAVE A PURPOSE.
Scripture: Oh yes, you shaped me first inside, then out; you formed me in my mother’s womb. I thank you, High God—you’re breathtaking! Body and soul, I am marvelously made! I worship in adoration—what a creation! You know me inside and out, you know every bone in my body; you know exactly how I was made, bit by bit, how I was sculpted from nothing into something. Like an open book, you watched me grow from conception to birth; all the stages of my life were spread out before you, the days of my life all prepared before I’d even lived one day (Psalm 139:13-16 MSG).
Take Away: I am a treasured treasure.
Lesson: God treasures us.
*I am not only a treasure, but I am also treasured by God.
*We are His most prized creation; knit perfectly together in our mother’s womb.
Application: (Personal story) in the summer of 2018, God began speaking to me about gold. One morning, before work, I saw a small, round object resting on the ground beside my car. I approached the object, attempting to get a closer look, and I quickly discovered what appeared to be a golden golf ball. It looked very distinctive and very different from a typical golf ball. But without hesitation, I picked it up and placed it in my pocket, recognizing that Jesus left me an unexpected gift. Initially, I was unsure what He was fully trying to say, but nonetheless, it became my mission to understand what He was beginning to reveal. This experience motivated me to study. I researched gold; how it’s formed, the history behind its discovery, why it’s desired, and the special characteristics it carries. (Bring in the golden ball, and show it to illustrate the story).
- Gold never dulls or rusts. It shines forever.
- Gold is more rare than diamonds
- Gold is an effective reflector of electromagnetic radiation such as infrared, visible light, and radio waves, and is used as a protective coating on satellites as well as for thermal protection in astronaut suits and helmets.
- Gold has been called the most beautiful of all chemical elements. Its beauty has made it desirable for use in jewelry, coins, and artwork for thousands of years.
- In the United States, of course, the most famous story about gold occurred in the late 1840s. Thousands of people flocked to California in search of gold. This era was called the Gold Rush. (Revival)
In Essence: Gold shines forever, is considered the most beautiful of all elements, never rusts, is desired, protects, is rare and expensive (lose your life to find it), and causes revival (gold rush).
Conclusion: Jesus is gold (I concluded that this might be what He was trying to reveal).
(Story cont.) As I was praying one night, thanking God for my pastor, I said these words, “God, thank you so much for pastor. I am so grateful that I have an amazing church to call home; one filled with teaching that never compromises your Word. Pastor is such a treasure…” God quickly interjected, “You’re my treasure.” I stopped my prayer, and God continued to speak, “Just like the gold, you are my treasure. You are my gold. You are rare. You’ll never dull or rust. You will shine forever, for I am woven into the fabric of your very being. People will flock to you, for you are a gold rush; a hidden treasure, soon to be revealed.”
*You, too, are a hidden treasure, soon to be revealed.
*Not only is Jesus the very epitome of the discoveries I collected, but we are too, for Jesus lives in us.
Activity: Pass around the golden ball. Ask any participants to identify and express three treasures within the individual holding the ball. For example: “I love your smile.” Or “I love how you are always willing to help me.” Verify that everyone has an opportunity to hold the golden ball.
*Read the Father’s Love Letter, and pass around a copy for each participant. (https://www.fathersloveletter.com/text.html)
Exercise: Because we are Jesus’ favorite treasure, have the participants in the water perform their favorite aquatic exercise. For example: if someone enjoys swimming laps, he or she can choose to swim laps. Time participants for 3 minutes. Challenge them to continue their favorite exercise for the entire 3 minutes without stopping. Have fun!