LESSON 14: BEING TRUSTWORTHY
What does trusting another person looks like? Here are some ideas of what a trustworthy person looks like to start with. A person you can trust:
- Tells the truth
- Honors his/ her promises to another
- Obeys the rules and laws even when no one is looking
- Is honest (would never steal, cheat, or lie)
- Is wise (He/she listens carefully to others and gives advice that is helpful to others.)
What does trusting in God look like?
For lessons 14 and 15 we will continue to memorize the prayer below
O Lord! Unto Thee I repair for refuge, and toward all Thy signs I set my heart. O Lord! Whether traveling or at home, and in my occupation or in my work, I place my whole trust in Thee. Grant me then Thy sufficing help so as to make me independent of all things, O Thou Who art unsurpassed in Thy mercy! Bestow upon me my portion, O Lord, as Thou pleasest, and cause me to be satisfied with whatsoever thou hast ordained for me. Thine is the absolute authority to commandThe Báb
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You can use the following explanation to help you present today’s quotation to the children:
True friends trust each other. A trustworthy person is honest and truthful and can be
counted on to keep his or her word. True friends know that they can rely on each other to do what is right, that one would never lie to the other or deceive him or her in any way. They see what is good in each other and do not focus on their shortcomings and faults. Of course, they know that their friend may sometimes make a mistake, but they show forgiveness and kindness to their friend. Each wants to help the other to do what is pleasing in the sight of God; a true friend is careful not to ask us to do that which is
unacceptable before God. The trust that is shared between two friends becomes stronger and stronger the more they know each other. We are, of course, kind and courteous to all people and look for the good in everyone, but the bonds of trust that exist between friends are strengthened over time, as each shows that he or she is worthy of the trust of the other and wants what is best for him or her.
We should all be trustworthy and learn to choose friends who are trustworthy, those who wish to please God, who are striving to follow His path, and who will help us to stay on the straight path. We should not allow ourselves to be cheated or deceived by those who are not trustworthy. ‘Abdu’l-Bahá was the essence of kindness and courtesy, but He never allowed those who were dishonest or deceitful to take advantage of His kindness. Once a driver who brought ‘Abdu’l-Bahá to a meeting in his carriage demanded an unfair price for the ride. The Master paid what He rightly owed to the driver and told him that, had he been honest, he would have received a handsome tip as well. Trust is a special bond between friends, and we should take care not to do anything to break it. So that we each remember the importance of being a true and trustworthy friend, let us memorize the following quotation:
O ye beloved of the Lord! Commit not that which defileth the limpid stream of love or destroyeth the sweet fragrance of friendship‘BAHA’U’LLAH
MEANING OF WORDS
When one is learning how to write, one will surely make a few errors. It is not unusual to commit errors when one is learning how to write.
Portia does her best to obey the laws of God. She does not want to commit any act that would displease Him.
The garden had once been beautiful, but some of the people who visited it left garbage and litter when they departed. The visitors defiled the garden with garbage they left.
The stream always ran clear and clean from the mountain. But a lot of chemicals and waste have been dumped into it recently. The stream has been defiled by waste being dumped into it.
The water in the pond was perfectly clear, and it was possible for Timothy to see many fish swimming along its bottom. Timothy could see to the very bottom of the limpid pond.
The water from the well is very clean and pure. Everyone felt refreshed to drink from the limpid waters of the well.
The young boy built a huge castle out of sand on the seashore, but when a wave came in and covered it, the castle was completely destroyed.
The farmers built a dam to stop the river from flooding onto their crops during the rainy season. Without the dam, their crops would be destroyed by the floods.
MEMORIZATION AID FOR QUOTE
PICTURES TO REMEMBER THE QUOTE HERE
Damon and Pythias
There is a well-known legend of two friends, Damon and Pythias, that has come to symbolize trust and loyalty in friendship. It is suggested that you tell the story to the children today, explaining that it is a very old tale from the early history of humanity. WRITTEN AS A SCRIPT BELOW
- King Dionysius:
There is a well-known legend of two friends, Damon and Pythias, that has come to symbolize trust and loyalty in friendship. It is suggested that you tell the story to the children today, explaining that it is a very old tale from the early history of humanity.
Narrator: Ever since they were children, Damon and Pythias had been friends. They played together and studied together and shared many of their thoughts with each other. They were so close that they trusted each other completely. Theirs was a true friendship; they would do anything to help each other.
Now, Damon and Pythias traveled to a city called Syracuse, which had a powerful king named Dionysius. There Pythias began giving public speeches that called into question the king’s unlimited power. Any king who took power without the permission of the people was an unjust tyrant, he told the crowds that stopped to listen. When he learned of Pythias’ growing influence among his people, Dionysius became convinced that he was trying to overthrow him. Angry and fearful, the king had Pythias and his friend Damon brought before him.
Dionysius: questioning Pythias says: “Why are you causing unrest among the people?”
Pythias: “There is nothing wrong in what I do, “I speak only the truth. “
Dionysius: “I do not believe you. You are trying to overthrow me. Tell the people you were not speaking the truth.”
Pythias: “Iwill not.
Dionysius: “Then you must die. What is your last request?”
Pythias: I would like to be allowed to return to my family to say good-bye and put my things in order.
Dionysius scoffed at him: “I would be a fool to let you leave Syracuse and expect you to return.
Pythias: I give you my word that I will return.
Narrator:But the king would not hear of it.
Just then Damon breaks in
Damon: “Pythias will return if you keep me as your prisoner while he is away, and if he breaks his promise, you may kill me instead. Surely you have heard of our friendship. You must believe, as I do, that Pythias would never allow his friend to be executed in his place.”
Dionysius:Hmmm. Let me think about this. Ok. I accept this unusual proposal, but I give you a warning. Pythias must return by a week from tomorrow; otherwise Damon will be killed.
Narrator: As the days passed and Pythias did not return, the king was sure that Damon would regret his selfless act. He decided to visit Damon in jail to see whether he thought himself a fool for trusting Pythias.
Dionysius: How are you feeling Damon? Pythias has not come back yet.
Damon: (said confidently) “Pythias must be delayed. He will return. “
Dionysius: laughing scornfully, “We shall see.”
Narrator: On the appointed day, Pythias still had not returned. The king had Damon brought before the executioner.
Dionysius: “The time has arrived, and yet your friend has not come for you. What do you say now? “
Damon calmly replied, “I trust my friend completely. “
At that very moment, the doors opened and a bruised and breathless Pythias staggered into the room towards Damon’s open arms.
Pythias: “Thank God, you are still alive! I was afraid I would not reach here in time. My ship was wrecked in a storm and bandits attacked me on the road, but still I could not give up hope that I would make it. ” Turning to the king, I am ready to die.
Narrator: The king was so astonished by the fidelity and steadfast trust of the two friends that he could not bring himself to carry out the unjust execution.
Dionysius: “Never in my life have I seen such devotion and faith in friendship. Because you have shown me that I was wrong to have doubted you, I have decided to pardon you Pythias-on one condition. “
Pythias and Damon say together: “What is that?”
Dionysius: “That you teach me how to be such a friend.”
From “Stories About‘Abdu’l-Bahá” by Gloria Faizi.
One day a woman came to ‘Abdu’l-Bahá with her sorrows. As she told her story,‘Abdu’l-Bahá tried to calm her and said, “Don’t be sad now, don’t be sad.”
The Woman said, “My brother has been in prison for three years. He should not have been imprisoned because it was not his fault. He was weak and followed others. He will be in prison for four more years. My mother and father are full of sorrow all the time. My brother-in-law used to take care of us, but he has just died.”
The Master could see the whole human story. Here was a family which was experiencing every form of misery-they were poor, they were weak, they were sad, disgraced, and without any hope whatsoever.
‘Abdu’l-Bahá said, “You must trust in God.”
“But,” the woman cried, “the more I trust, the worse things become!”
“You have never trusted,” said ‘Abdu’l-Bahá.
“But my mother is reading the Bible all of the time,” she said. “She does not deserve that God should leave her so helpless! I read the Bible myself; I say the 91st Psalm and the 23rd Psalm every night before I go to bed. I pray too.”
‘Abdu’l-Bahá looked at her lovingly and said, “To pray is not to read the Bible. To pray is to trust in God and accept His Will. You must be patient and accept the Will of God, then things will change for you. Put your family in God’s hands. Trust in God and love His Will. Strong ships are not conquered by the sea; they ride the waves! Now be a strong ship, not a battered one.”
Draw any part of the story
DRAMA / GAMES
To help the children continue developing the skills and abilities of creative drama, you may have them carry out the following activities:
Begin by having the students do the stretching exercise in their imaginary squares. Ask them to remain in their squares and pretend to change from: an elephant into a mouse, a snake into a lion, a frog into a horse, a fish into a whale, a ballet dancer into a football player, an old man or lady into a young boy or girl.
Now ask the children to pursue their lips together and say: 0000 00000 000000.
Tell them to take a deep breath and see how long they can make it last: 00000000 00000000000000000000000
Ask them to make a short sharp sound: a. a. a. a. a. a. a. a.
Now tell them to put the two sounds together: 00000 a.a.a. ooa. ooa.a. oooooooooa. oa. ooooa. ooa.a.a.a.a.
Let the children experiment with making different combinations, and then divide the youngsters into pairs. Tell them to use only these sounds, “oooo” and “a”, to talk to each other in the following situations:
- Two children are trading marbles for crayons.
- Two children are bathing a puppy.
- One child is teaching another to skip.
- A mother is getting a child ready for school.
- Two people are harvesting com.
- A child is telling a bus driver that he or she has no money.
- Someone who is lost is asking someone else for directions.
Divide into groups- one teacher with one and the other teacher with another To help the children gain further understanding of the theme of this lesson-that true friends trust each other-you may wish to have them re-enact the story of Damon and Pythias. Depending on the number of children in your class and the time available, you could either divide them into groups for this purpose or have all the children participate in one large re-enactment. In the latter case, some of the children could be part of the crowd to whom Pythias spoke or members of the king’s court,while others could be Damon’s jailers or the bandits that attacked Pythias. Bring children all back together first and then: Following the re-enactment, you could ask the children a few questions such as:
- Why was Damon willing to be in prison for his friend?
- Why did Damon trust that Pythias would return?
- Why was the king astonished when Pythias returned for the execution?
- What qualities did Pythias demonstrate by returning as he did?
- Why do you think the king changed his mind about the execution?
- What do you think Damon and Pythias could teach the king about friendship?
AN EXERCISE IN TRUST
- In pairs, one blindfolded and the other one is to lead him to somewhere e.g tree, and let him feel the tree. Change over.
- Objects are scattered in an indoor or outdoor place. In pairs, one person verbally guides his/her partner, a blindfolded person, through the minefield.
CONTENT TO BE UPLOADED SOON
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Based on the second story where ‘Abdu’l-Baha says: Strong ships are not conquered by the sea; they ride the waves!
Make/ paint/ draw a ship sailing on the waves and add the phrase “Strong ships are not conquered by the sea; they ride the waves!”
some ideas below:
Easy paper boat picture website here and here
Make a card to thank someone for being a person you can trust.
The card does not have to be given to anyone: Although that is very nice. It can honor those who have died or people whose names or addresses are unknown. A display can be made of the cards and include “People we would like to thank for being trustworthy.”
DRAW SCENES FROM THE STORY
Review the quotation from today’s lesson, and then remind the children of the qualities of trustworthiness and radiance and the quotations they memorized in Grade 1:
He, verily, shall increase the reward of them that endure with patienceBaha’u’llah
O Son of Spirit! My first counsel is this: Possess a pure, kindly and radiant heart . . .Baha’u’llah