Praise: Crediting the Conditions

This lesson is focused on praise as an essential element of youth ministry.

Enhancer of Joy

Praise

Duration

60 minutes

Lesson Developed by

Chris Russell

Materials Checklist

  • Film clips with soundtracks that enhance
  • Bibles
  • Freshly brewed coffee
  • 4 different types of cup including a classy one and a Styrofoam/polysterene one
  • Paper and pens
  • A digital image of the word Praise

Scripture Focus

  • Habakkuk 3: 16-19
  • Psalm 73

Purpose

  • To recognize the formative place of praise
  • To identify obstacles to praise
  • To commit to being apprentices of praise 

Further Study

www.theworkofthepeople.com – liturgical resources, films and images

ww.concreteonline.org – a UK based resource for those working with young people.

Gather

Gather (5 minutes)

  • Opening Prayer 
  • Greeting One Another
  • Introduction of Session 

Engage

Engage (30 mintues)

Activity 1: Watch two film clips which are enhanced by their soundtrack. Maybe an action film and a romantic film.

  • Ask the group to comment on what the music/ soundtrack adds, not just to the film, but to the experience of those watching the film.
  • In the same way that the events are experienced differently because of what accompanies/ surrounds  them so are our lives as followers of Christ – this is the gift of praise.
  • Read Habakkuk 3: 16-19 – what difference do you think v 18 makes to the prophet? Why do you think that is? Assig one young person to be a scribe. Write it up on an A1 sheet.

Activity 2: Brew some great coffee.

  • Produce 4 different cups/ mugs/ containers. 1 must be a thing of beauty and one must be a Styrofoam / polystyrene cup. Offer crème, sugar and even syrups.
  • Ask the young people which one they prefer to drink out of and why?
  • In the same way that containers change our experience of what we drink – given the choice few would ever choose the polysterene – so how we frame our lives effects how we experience it. Praise frames our life around the goodness of God.
  • Read: Psalm 73 – track the changing emotions of Asaph and notice when the change happens? (v17)
  • The hinge of v 17 only makes sense when we work out why Asaph is there. Cross reference with 1 Chronicles 25: 6 – it was his job. Asaph is n the Temple because it is his duty.

Reflect

Reflect (20 minutes)

Activity 3: What holds people back from praise? What holds you back from praise?

  • Are there any instances in scripture which we meet people who face similar situations but chose to praise? [ Psalm 42, Acts 16: 16-34]
  • Can anyone give testimony to the difference that choosing to praise brings 

Activity 4: encourage the group to open their Bibles at the Psalms – and to share briefly in the group what they like about the psalms (someone usually says fairly swiftly that they like the honesty of the psalms)

  • Whilst this is true all that is expressed to God in the psalms is expressed to God in the context of praise. Praise frames the life of faith.
  • Give out nice A4 paper – not just copier paper – but good quality writing paper  and pens.
  • Invite each young person to write a psalm – which is honest, but which also expresses praise

Send Forth

Send Forth (5 minutes)

  • How might this week be different if we commit to praise? 
  • Put up the digital image of the word Praise. Encourage everyone to take a pic of it on their phone and have it as their wallpaper.
  • Closing Prayer 

Related Videos

Lecture

Interview Clips

Additional Document

Ford-and-Russell-on-Praise.pdf