Lesson Overview: What does it look like to truly walk through our lives extending forgiveness to others? Why do we extend forgiveness to others? This youth group lesson dives into the topic of forgiveness, and how as we receive forgiveness from God, we can extend it to others.

Bible: Proverbs 3:5-6, Proverbs 14:12, James 1:5

Bottom Line: Seek what is God, not just what you think is good. 

Capture: Grab their attention with an illustration.

  • Story: Tell a story about a time that you followed someone into a bad situation because you thought it would be “a good idea.” Talk about the unforeseen consequences that you suffered because of it. Keep your illustration lighthearted and fun.
  • Sometimes what we think will be a good leads us away from what God wants for our lives.
  • So how do you make good choices? This is what we’re going to unpack tonight through God’s word.

Connect: Connect them to God’s word.

  • Tension Question: Are you following God, or are you following what you think is good? The only way to make truly good decisions in your life is to resolve to follow God.
  • Scripture: Proverbs 3:5-6 — We must lean on God’s understanding, not our own.

Consider: What does this mean for us today?

  • Scripture: Proverbs 14:12 — Just because something appears to be right doesn’t mean that it is. The only decisions that are truly right are the ones that follow God’s will.
  • Walking down our own path may seem right just because it looks good, but even things that look good may lead to death.
  • Wisdom is knowing the difference between what’s good and what’s from God.
  • Bottom line: Seek what is God, not just what you think is good.

Collide: How do we apply this to our lives?

  • Scripture: James 1:5 — If you need wisdom for a decision, God tells us through His word that all we need to do is ask for it.
  • Asking is the opposite of assuming. Assuming you know what the best decision is because it seems right is prideful, and may lead to death like we saw in scripture earlier. Asking God for wisdom is a form of humility. It says, “God, you know better than I do what the best decision is.”
  • Story: Share about a time in your life you asked God for wisdom in making a decision. How did He give you the answer you needed?
  • God gives wisdom generously to those who are humble enough to ask for it.
  • Asking God for wisdom is one way that we lean on God.
  • Illustration: Have a student come onstage and ask them to lean on you. Move quickly (where they could fall) — if they do almost fall, they had complete trust in you. If they don’t, they weren’t really leaning. You can spin both reactions toward a powerful point in the lesson.
  • Leaning is a posture of 100% trust.
  • Application: Lean on God for wisdom and He will help you make good decisions.

Call: How do we respond to the message?

  • Altar moment: Are you leaning on the Lord or are you withholding yourself from leaning on Him because you’re afraid you’re going to fall? Here’s the good news: God will not fail you. You won’t fall when you truly lean on Him. Ask Him for wisdom tonight and He will help you distinguish between what seems good and what is God.
  • Small Group Questions:
  1. Have you ever found yourself in a bad situation because you thought it was “good idea” at first? Tell us about it.
  2. What’s the danger of following our own path over God’s path?
  3. How do we distinguish the difference between what is good and what is God?
  4. How can you lean on God more intentionally this week?


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