Selfish or sacrificial?

Over the past two years, the award-winning “Hunger Games” films have captured the attention of moviegoers of all ages. This trilogy is based on an act of sacrifice: The protagonist Katniss Everdeen takes her sister’s place in the Hunger Games, an annual competition in which youth fight until only one survivor remains. In the most recent installment of the trilogy, “Mockingjay Part 1,” many of the characters make great sacrifices for the greater cause of justice. Committed to overthrowing the Capitol and its reign of terror, people give up their homes, occupations and loved ones in an effort to stand up against President Snow, the leader responsible for the destruction and devastation.

It’s all about me

Adolescence is a self-centered season of life. Teens seek to be autonomous, viewing themselves as independent individuals who are capable of making their own decisions. This newfound independence causes many teenagers to become self-absorbed, leading to friction in relationships with family members and other adults in authority. Because they are so preoccupied with their personal thoughts, they do not always consider how their actions affect others.

It’s all about Christ

Christians are called to model their lives after Jesus Christ, a man who was anything but self-centered. He always put others’ concerns first, disregarding social norms in order to extend love to all of God’s children. Jesus offered up his safety, his wealth, and ultimately his life so that others can live life abundantly. The call to follow Jesus is a call to live sacrificially with a heart that is focused on God and other people. We are called to be just as committed to helping individuals in need as we are to taking care of ourselves. As youth leaders, with Jesus as our example and our ever-present help, we can support teens as they transition from being self-centered to self-sacrificing.

Question of the day: For whom would you be willing to make sacrifices?
Focal Scriptures: John 15:1-17; Luke 21:1-4; Luke 1:26-38

For a complete lesson on this topic visit LinC.

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