One of the biggest challenges right now is the “Back to School” blues. Summer is over and the reality of school has set back in again. Everyone’s back to pursuing something. Popularity, grades, sports, maybe even aspiring to music careers on YouTube, everyone faces the pressure to perform.
This game is great to blow off some steam and burn off a little energy in the youth group. As typical in any game of tag, it is a game of pursuit. This lends itself to a discussion of the things we pursue in life and what the Bible says we should pursue.
What to Do
- Choose someone to be the “cat” and another person to be the “mouse” then ask the rest of the youth to hold hands and form a circle around the “mouse”.
- Have every two persons in the circle to drop hands so that they are in pairs. These partners must continue holding hands and cannot let go.
- The cat can cut through the circle in between pairs, but the mouse must run around the outside of the circle.
- The objective is for the cat to tag the mouse, but there is a small twist that balances out the cat’s ability to cut through the circle. The mouse can grab any free hand (or arm) of the partners forming the circle. (The partners will be holding hands or locking arms, but the outside arm of each person will be free.) If the mouse grabs one of these outside arms/ hands, the mouse forms a new partner with the person the mouse has attached to, and the person who was not grabbed now becomes the new mouse.
- If the cat manages to tag the mouse, they reverse roles and the cat becomes the mouse and the mouse becomes the cat.
- This game can usually go on for quite a while before the youth become bored. Usually I will set a time limit and a forfeit for the person who is the cat when the time is up.
- For Christmas you could have the Grinch chasing the Puppy, or Herod Chasing Baby Jesus.
- For Thanksgiving have the Farmer Chasing the Turkey.
- For Easter you could have the Pharisees Chasing the Disciples.
- For a lesson on King David, you could have Saul chasing David.
- For a lesson on Moses, Have Pharaoh Chasing Moses.
- There are a lot of places in the Old Testament where People are being pursued.
Take It to the Next Level
Take it Spiritual
In life, we may sometimes be pursued and other times we may be doing the pursuing. What are some things that we pursue in life?
Here are some of the things the Bible says we should pursue.
- Love – 1 Corinthians 14:1 (NAS)
- Peace -1 Peter 3:11 (ASV NAS RSV NIV); Psalms 34:14 (KJV ASV NAS RSV NIV)
- Righteousness, piety, faith, love, endurance, meekness – 1 Timothy 6:11 (NAS NIV)
- Righteousness, faith, love, and peace – 2 Timothy 2:22 (NAS NIV)
- Peace, Holiness – Hebrews 12:14 (NAS)
- Prize – Philippians 3:12-14
- Righteousness – Proverbs 15:9 (NAS RSV NIV); Romans 9:30-32 (NAS RSV NIV); Isaiah 51:1 (NAS RSV NIV)
- Peace, Things that build others up – Romans 14:19 (NAS RSV)
- To Know God – Hosea 6:3 (NKJV)
As you look over the things the Bible says to pursue, you’ll see they fall into the same two areas of the great commandment – To love the Lord your God with all your heart soul mind and strength, and to Love your neighbor as yourself – A right relationship with God and a right relationship with others.
Take it Personal
- Which of these do people find difficult to pursue?
- What stops people from pursuing these things of God?
- When you think about your relationship with God – faith, endurance, righteousness, piety and holiness, how do you think you measure up?
- What are you currently pursuing?
- How can you direct that pursuit in a way that is honoring to God?
- In what areas does your life – thoughts, attitudes, actions – need improvement?
- What is one thing you can pursue this week in your relationship with God?
- What is one thing you can pursue this week in your relationship with others?
“Pursue love, yet desire earnestly spiritual gifts, but especially that you may prophesy.”
1 Corinthians 14:1 (NASB)
“They must turn from evil and do good; they must seek peace and pursue it.”
1 Peter 3:11 (NIV)
“But you, man of God, flee from all this, and pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, endurance and gentleness.”
1 Timothy 6:11 (NIV)
“Flee the evil desires of youth, and pursue righteousness, faith, love and peace, along with those who call on the Lord out of a pure heart.”
2 Timothy 2:22
“Pursue peace with all men, and the sanctification without which no one will see the Lord.”
Hebrews 12:14 (NASB)
“Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already arrived at my goal, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me. Brothers and sisters, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.”
Philippians 3:12-14 (NIV)
“What then shall we say? That the Gentiles, who did not pursue righteousness, have obtained it, a righteousness that is by faith; but the people of Israel, who pursued the law as the way of righteousness, have not attained their goal. Why not? Because they pursued it not by faith but as if it were by works. They stumbled over the stumbling stone.”
Romans 9:30-32 (NIV)
“So then we pursue the things which make for peace and the building up of one another.”
Romans 14:19 (NASB)
“Let us know, Let us pursue the knowledge of the Lord. His going forth is established as the morning; He will come to us like the rain, Like the latter and former rain to the earth.”
Hosea 6:3 (NKJV)
This 170 page resource not only provides 52 of the world’s most popular group icebreaker activities and games, but also includes lesson ideas and discussion questions to smoothly transition into conversations about the issues common to most groups.
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