Students will learn that God offers a firm foundation and Jesus is our cornerstone for navigating life’s difficulties.

Warm Up
Marshmallow Tower. Break the students into small groups each with a bag of marshmallows and a small box of uncooked spaghetti noodles. The goal is to build the highest, freestanding tower using only these items. Determine a set amount of time and play the Life After Death playlist. An added challenge would be to require the towers to support a ping pong ball at their highest point without toppling over. 

Sidenote: students and marshmallows are usually a sticky combination so be careful in choosing the space you use for this activity.

Another idea would be simply playing the game Jenga, particularly if you have access to one of the large game sets.

  • Did you find this activity easy or challenging?
  • When it got more challenging, what made it feel that way?
  • What helped your tower be more stable?

Ultimately, it’s a real challenge to create a firm, steady tower with marshmallows and spaghetti noodles. When things don’t go as we plan or when things feel unsteady, it can be a very frustrating experience.

  • How would you compare that to the feeling of life being unsteady?

The Video
Play the music video for “Cornerstone” by TobyMac.

  • What about the song most stood out to you?
  • Where has TobyMac best found a firm foundation in life?

Jesus is compared to a cornerstone, a foundational point in a building where two walls meet, providing stability. Let’s see how a relationship with Jesus can bring stability to our life.

Bible Study
Read 1 Peter 2:4-8
Quotes in these verses come from the Old Testament in Isaiah and Psalms.

  • Why do you think 1 Peter includes quotes from the Old Testament? Why would they do that?
  • Who is it that they are calling the cornerstone?
  • Why would it be important to build your spiritual home on this cornerstone?
  • Why do you think that not depending on the cornerstone of Jesus Christ might cause someone to stumble?

Read Matthew 7:24-27
Jesus teaches that living a holy life is challenging and many will choose an easier path leading to destruction. However, those who hear and apply His words are like the wise man who built on rock.

  • Why do you feel like following the teachings of Jesus is like building your house on rock?
  • What are some of the rains, floods, and winds in life that He is referring to in verse 25?
  • If following Jesus is building your house on rock, what are things that would represent building a life on sand?
  • Why do you think those things aren’t as firm a foundation as following Jesus?

Read Jeremiah 29:11-13
The famous Old Testament scripture offers hope to the captive Israelites in Babylon, as the prophet Jeremiah assures them of God’s help and plan for their lives.

  • As you read these verses from Jeremiah, where do you find hope?
  • Do you feel like God’s plan for your life is very specific or very broad?
  • What promises are in these verses?
  • What is asked of us in these verses?
  • How might this connect to building your life on a firm foundation in relationship with God?
  • How does this reflect seeing Jesus Christ as your cornerstone?

Wrap Up
TobyMac, after losing his son and during the funeral service, emphasizes the importance of building on the rock of Christ as the only solution to his pain and suffering, amidst the various potential solutions offered by the world. (Video link: https://youtu.be/BC8ri3fXEpY)

  • When in your own life has it been hard to stand on the rock of Christ?
  • How do you find a relationship with Jesus bringing comfort to those suffering and in pain?

As you close out the night in prayer, invite the young people to reflect on how they need Jesus to be more present in their lives. 

  • Where do you need Jesus to show up in your pain? In life’s uncertainty? In doubt and fear?
  • In what ways do you need Jesus to be your cornerstone?

This song is featured on “The Linc: Trusting God” Spotify playlist – which is the perfect way to remind your students what you’ve taught them in this session. To share it with them, click the live link on the web version of this study.