Cutting Corners

We should be careful to follow God's standards, so that we do not defile ourselves and ruin our reputation.

TOPICS:

Choices, Greed, Honor God, Reputation

MATERIALS:

Treasure map (2 copies) [PDF] Click here 
Scissors

DURATION:

Approximately 7 minutes


Treasure trunk

PREPARATION:

Print out two copies of the treasure map. Fold each map in half-length wise, and then fold the maps in half again. Fold the maps in such a way, so as the treasure chest is located in one of the corners. Make sure that you cut off enough of the corners so that the treasure chest is no longer on the map.  

WHAT YOU WILL DO:

As you tell the story, you slowly clip off the four corners of one of the maps that will represent the dishonest salesman's product.

WHAT YOU WILL SAY:

Let's suppose two new salesmen were just hired by a company called Old World Treasure Maps. The salesmen's names were Bob and Fred. Initially both salesmen worked very hard. Both of them would arrive at work early and work late into the night. They were so dedicated that they ate lunch at their desks while they continued to work. Soon both Bob and Fred had many customers.

One night after getting home from work, Fred thought to himself, "Why am I knocking myself out at work? I have plenty of customers. I think I'll start taking it easy." The next day Fred was late for work. Fred starting taking more and more coffee breaks during the day and did not answer all his phone calls. Fred was getting lazy. (Clip one corner off the folded map.)

Soon Fred was taking long lunches and charging them to the company, stating that he was taking customers to lunch, when in fact this was true only half of the time. Fred was becoming dishonest. (Clip another corner off the folded map.)

The boss noticed that Fred's sales were steadily decreasing and mentioned that he was falling way behind the company's star salesperson, Bob. Fred began to sell his customer's cheaper products at a higher price to try to make it look like he was making a lot of money for the company. Fred began to cheat his customers. (Clip another corner off the folded map.)

Fred's evil plan did not work and he was still losing customers. The boss called Fred into his office and asked Fred why he was losing so many customers. Fred thought for a moment and then lied, "It's Bob's fault, he's stealing all my customers." The boss soon found out that Fred had lied to him and fired him on the spot. Fred had also become a liar. (Clip off the last corner of the map. Then unfold both the treasure maps and hold them up, so all the kids can see them.)

Which map would you rather buy, the map that is complete or the map that has many missing pieces? (Allow for answers.)

In our story today, we saw how easy it is to become defiled. In other words, lose or ruin our integrity and reputation. When we defile ourselves, we defile ourselves before men and God. As Christians, we should continually strive to follow God's laws and commandments. When we follow God we can rest assured that our reputations are safe.