This is a quiz of 10 questions based on romance at the movies. There are questions about obvious romantic movies as well as some questions about the romance in some “guy” movies so that everyone can at least get a couple right. You can download the PowerPoint file or the image files for use in other screen presentation software from the links below.
There are lots of Easter and Good Friday videos available these days, but one of my favorites would have to be “What Does Love Sound Like?” I have watched it more times than I can count and have shown it at least 10 times in various settings and every time I am struck by the power of the message. The link above will take you to Worship House Media where you can purchase and download it.
The cross is so many things. It is pain and healing. It is defeat and victory. It is death and life. But one of the things that the cross is to me is a declaration–an unashamed declaration–of God’s love for us. The birth of Jesus was a small affair, just a few shepherds and a wise man or three, but His death was public. It was out in the open. It wasn’t hidden away in some corner. It was God saying to the whole world. “You want to know how much I love you? You want to know how far I will go to make sure you know I care? Well check this out! Here is my love.”
God didn’t whisper his love to us like a guy on the phone with his wife when his friends are around. God was unashamed in His love for us.
So here is the idea:
Find an old love letter that you wrote to your significant other back when you were still in that mushy-ushy sickly-sweet love stage. The younger you were when you wrote it the better.
Then tell a little about your letter (when it was written etc.) and then read it for your group. Don’t be ashamed of your love and don’t be afraid to laugh at yourself a bit either.
Say: This same type of love–this unashamed, unafraid to show it to the world kind of love–that is how God loves you. In the cross God showed us His love. He wrote it out for all of the world to see. He didn’t hide it, he shouted his love for you and for me. The cross is many things, but one thing it is, is God’s declaration of love for you and for me.
Each of these stations were designed to be used by individual worshipers in a self-guided worship activity. These stations were written to accompany the LOVE worship outline, but they can be used on their own as well.
How it Works
- Create a space for each station. The station will dictate what sort of space is required, but normally a table containing the instructions and materials will be sufficient.
- Spread the stations out around your room so that participants will be able to move freely between them.
- Include space around your room for participants to simply sit and worship too
- Spend some time designing your stations with material, candles, and other elements that seem appropriate.
- Print the instructions for each station and place them where they can be seen easily.
- Place the materials on each station. (If something is going to be used and placed back you may need only a few of them, if something will be used and taken you will need as many as you have participants)
- Play some soft music while people are engaged with the stations to cut down on distractions and help keep people focused.
Love Letter to God
- Stationary (we used card stock cut in half and the folded like a card)
And so we know and rely on the love God has for us. God is love. 1 John 4:16a (NIV)
There is nothing quite as amazing as a love letter from someone we love. We read each word carefully searching for hidden meaning. We scrutinize and memorize as we rejoice in every sentence every syllable. In many ways the Bible is God’s love letter to us. It is a record of His work in the world and it is His way of reminding us of His love for us that He proved on the cross.
Take some time and come up with your own love letter to God. Write an original work of art that expresses your love to God. It can be a poem or a paragraph or whatever you feel like saying.
Remember that love is more than just a feeling it also involves your actions.
And this is love: that we walk in obedience to his commands. As you have heard from the beginning, his command is that you walk in love. 2 John 1:6 (NIV)
- art supplies
- paper (we used one big communal piece of paper, that way at the end we had a mural of the love of God)
Read the verses below, then without using a heart as a symbol draw a picture of love
A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another.  By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another. John 13:34-35 (NIV)
My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you.  Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends. John 15:12-13 (NIV)
But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Romans 5:8 (NIV)
- build a large free standing cross (ours was made out of 4x4s)
- Paint the cross black
- Use red paint pens to write the bad list on one side of the cross (fill the cross with words even if you need to repeat a few)
- Use white paint pens to write the good list on the other side of the cross (fill the cross with words even if you need to repeat a few)
- Set the cross somewhere that worshipers have access to both sides
- Bad Word List: Unloved, Unloveable, Unworthy, Ugly, Worthless, Useless, Forgettable, No good, Used, Overlooked, Ignored, Hated, Outcast, Stupid, Guilty, Forgotten, Alone
- Good Word List: Loved, Chosen, Worthy, Beautiful, Valuable, Useful, Important, Holy, Noticed, Loved, Liked, Invited, Picked, Forgiven, Remembered, Family, Child of God, Saint, Changed, Reborn, Renewed, Restored, Loved, Loved, Loved, Respected, Welcome, Transformed
This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him. This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins. 1 John 4:9-10 (NIV)
It is the cross where God proved his love for us. But many times it is hard for us to feel very loved. The words of our own mind and the words of others are more real to us than the words of God.
Look at the front side of the cross (the side with the red words). Read the words that are written there. As you come to a word that you feel is true about your life, or that others have called you or have made you feel then place you hand on that word.
The beauty of the cross is that none of those words are true about you. God loves you and proved that love in the cross. This means that you are important to God.
Move to the other side of the cross and read the words there that are true about you. Place your hand on any that are hard to believe and ask God to speak the truth of those words to your soul.
- Heart shaped cutouts (you will need two for each worshiper)
- Box for heart pieces
Heal me, O Lord, and I will be healed; save me and I will be saved, for you are the one I praise. Jeremiah 17:14 (NIV)
Take a heart from the stack on the table and find a place to be by yourself.
Think of the times in the past that you have been hurt. What pains are you still holding on to? What are you having trouble letting go? These pains may be things done to you by someone else or by your own mistakes. For each of these hurts tear a piece of your heart. Don’t hide the things that hurt you be honest with yourself as you tear your heart.
Now go back to the table and place the pieces of your heart in the box and get a new heart.
That new heart is the heart that God wants to give you. Real life hurt can’t be healed in one night, but all healing comes from God. It is God’s love for you that restores you and creates in you a new heart.
Take your new heart home as a reminder that God can heal you.
Love in Action
- Index Cards
- List of Actions (on back of instruction sheet)
Whoever has my commands and obeys them, he is the one who loves me. He who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I too will love him and show myself to him.” John 14:21 (NIV)
Love isn’t just a feeling it is action. Love is a verb. Look at the list of actions on the back of this sheet. They are each actions that require you to get out of your comfort zone and reach out in love.
Spend some time in prayer asking God to show you how He is asking you to reach out in love.
Take one of the cards from the table and write down the love actions that God is calling you to do. Then take this card home and put in somewhere that you will see it everyday as a reminder of your commitment to love.
I will spend time with someone who needs a friend
I will spend time with someone in this youth group who I don’t know very well.
I will stop gossip when I hear it, and I will not pass it on to others.
When I see someone getting picked on I will step in and defend him/her
I will do something nice for my parents
I will share the truth about Jesus with my friends.
I will remember that my life is a picture of the gospel for others and I will live a life that points others to God.
I will choose to stay away from places and situations that can ruin my testimony to others
I will take an interest in how God’s love is being shared around the world.