The Song: “(SMS) Shine” by David Crowder Band
Main Point of Discussion: Life sometimes throws trials our way, but God promises to be with us in the dark times and bring beauty out of tragedy.
Vital Info Before You Get Started: (The following should help you contextualize this very popular song so you can have a great discussion about it with your kids.)
- This is a self-produced, visually stunning, and entertaining video with a strong message about the way God works in the midst of our trials. You can view it on YouTube at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P8cAU475dQo
- When you go through this discussion with your family, don’t appear as if you have a “canned” discussion in your head and rattle off questions like a teacher giving a pop quiz—your kids get enough of that in school. This is a guide, primarily—not a verbatim script. Just familiarize yourself with the content here and start a conversation in the most natural, unforced way you know how.
The Music Video:
The song’s video can be found at the following link:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P8cAU475dQo
Send me a sign
A hint, a whisper
Throw me a line
‘Cause I am listening
Come break the quiet
Breathe your awakening
Bring me to life
‘Cause I am fading
The rush of angels’ wings
Shine your light so I can see you
Pull me up I need to be near you
Hold me I need to feel love
Can you overcome this heart that’s overcome
You sent a sign
A hint, a whisper
Heaven is listening
Death laid love quiet
Yet in the night a stirring
The rush of angels
Oh the wonder of
The greatest love
Come for us
Oh the wonder of
The greatest love
Shine your light so all can see it
Lift it up ‘cause the whole world needs it
Love’s come down what joy to hear it
He has overcome (2x)
Three Simple Questions (with Answers You May Be Looking for):
Q: What’s the message of this song?
A: Life sometimes throws trials our way, but God promises to be with us in the dark times and bring beauty out of tragedy.
Q: How do you suppose we—as serious Christ-followers—should react to this song?
A: With a sense of hope and encouragement, as it’s a great reminder of God’s concern for our lives.
Q: How can we move from healthy, Bible-based opinions about this song to actually living out those opinions?
A: We can call to mind the lyrics and images from the video (which in turn can remind us of God’s truths found in Scripture) whenever dark times come our way—because they do…and they will.
Where to Take It from Here:
Wherever it feels natural. If these questions lead to a longer discussion on the topic, wonderful! (There’s a guide just after this paragraph that helps you do just that.) If your kids are barely uttering grunts, don’t get discouraged—the next time it feels right, try out another song. Keep engaging them.
For Deeper Discussion: (If your kids seem into diving in deeper and looking at what the Bible has to say on the subject, the following discussion guide can help take you there.)
Let’s talk more about the message of this song and how it can remind us of God’s goodness when times are tough.
More Discussion Questions:
- HAVE ALL YOUR FAMILY MEMBERS ANSWER: What was the most painful loss you remember our family going through?
- ASK A FEW: In what ways can God personally relate to the loss that the character in the video goes through?
Read the following passage from the Bible:
- Romans 8:18; 26-28
18Yet what we suffer now is nothing compared to the glory he will reveal to us later…26And the Holy Spirit helps us in our weakness. For example, we don’t know what God wants us to pray for. But the Holy Spirit prays for us with groanings that cannot be expressed in words. 27And the Father who knows all hearts knows what the Spirit is saying, for the Spirit pleads for us believers in harmony with God’s own will. 28And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them.
- ASK A FEW: What is the “glory he will reveal to us later”? (Parent—answer you may be looking for: we will be rewarded for trusting God during hard times)
- ASK A FEW: Why don’t we always know what God wants us to pray for? (Parent—answer you may be looking for: we can’t always see the big picture or how God’s sovereignty comes into play)
Now say something like:
Christians sometimes quote Romans 8:28 (“And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them”) to people going through pain. The problem is that people in pain have a hard time seeing how their trials can be anything near “good,” so quoting this verse to them can have a reverse effect!
What most people don’t know is that when Paul wrote this passage, his life was going well—he was pumped-up when he penned that promise from God. Not long after, though, he was arrested and thrown in prison and couldn’t be a missionary anymore. The interesting thing is that God used Paul’s time in prison to inspire him to write most of the New Testament. So…what seemed like the farthest thing from “good” for Paul actually became good—very good—in the end.
So this verse is not one you probably want to quote to people who are really struggling emotionally during trials—but you should keep it in mind for yourself when times are good so later you can hold to its promises in hard times.
- ASK A FEW: Do you believe God can take any tragic circumstance and work it out for good? Why or why not?
Say something like:
We need to remember that the “good” here doesn’t necessarily equate to our personal happiness, but rather (as in Paul’s case), it’s “good” for our relationship with God and his perfect plans.
- ASK A FEW: Under what conditions does God work all things together for our good? (Parent—answer you may be looking for: God does so for those who love him and are concerned about following his call and purpose)
- HAVE ALL YOUR FAMILY MEMBERS ANSWER: What are a few specific ways we could apply the promises of the Holy Spirit interceding and God working all things together for good to our lives?
Christ-followers have the amazing privilege of knowing that tragedy and loss are not the final statements in life. Not only that, but God takes the ashes of our fiery trials and brings beauty out of pain. Let’s reflect on what that might mean for us personally.
(Give pencils and copies of the following application exercise to your family members and ask them to think about the prompts and fill in the blanks.)
We know that the Holy Spirit helps us in our weaknesses.
The weaknesses I need help with right now are:
We know that God works all things together for good for those who love him and are called according to his purpose.
The things in my life that I am asking God to work together for good are:
We know that Jesus is the Light who shines in the darkness.
The dark areas of my life where I need Jesus to shine are:
Close in Prayer