9. Childish Things
- Chalice or LED/battery-operated candle
- A copy of the movie Monsters, Inc., and a player
- For Optional Activity: Note cards and envelopes; pens/pencils; postage stamps
- Optional: A copy of the Michael Jackson song "Man in the Mirror," and a player
- Watch the movie. If the session time will be limited, choose scenes to show the group.
Use your established opening ritual. Or, light the chalice and share this quote:
When I was a child, I spoke like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child; when I became an adult, I put an end to childish ways. — Christian scripture, 1 Corinthians 13:11
Watch the movie Monsters, Inc. If time does not permit showing the entire movie, ask for volunteers to explain the premise and show a few clips. Make sure you include the climax of the movie: when Sully sees stills from his training footage and realizes what he looks like to Boo. The fear that registers on Boo's face shocks him. He realizes for the first time how hurtful fear can be.
- Has anyone ever been afraid of you? What did that feel like? How did you react?
- Everyone has times when they look in the mirror and don't like what they see. Sometimes, people will see you in a way totally different from how you see yourself. Discuss a time this happened to you.
- People often talk about "putting away childish things" as we mature. One sign of maturity is to let go of behavior that does not serve you well. Sully in Monsters, Inc. stopped scaring children and changed the way the town gathered energy because he did not feel good about scaring children after seeing himself through Boo's eyes. Have you ever had an experience that, on reflection, brought you to the realization that you had not behaved up to your own standards? What was that like? Did it cause a change in your behavior?
- Has anyone ever pointed out one of your flaws? Was the comment hard to swallow? Did it cause a change in your behavior?
It's just as easy to point out someone's good points as their flaws. Think of someone with whom you have a difficult relationship, someone you have not communicated with in a long time, or someone you don't know well and would like to know better. Use the note cards to tell that person something about them you like. Perhaps they make great cookies or are good at math. Perhaps they are nice to their little sister or they are a snappy dresser. Spend a few minutes writing the card. Take it with you and mail or give it to the person.
Use your established opening ritual. Or, play "Man in the Mirror" by Michael Jackson and extinguish the chalice.