Music and the Gospel: “Meant To Be,” Bebe Rexha ft. Florida Georga Line, 4th Sunday of Easter

Friends, family, people we date all influence us as we grow and mature. These relationships can be both positive and negative. They can challenge who we think we are and who we want to be. They can push us into mistakes and teach us how to be better people. More importantly, relationships can teach us about mutual respect and openness. The song “Meant To Be” is about being open to new experiences and relationships.

Key lines: Who knows where this road is supposed to lead / We got nothing but time / As long as you’re right here next to me, everything’s gonna be alright / If it’s meant to be, it’ll be, it’ll be ‘Baby, just let it be / If it’s meant to be, it’ll be, it’ll be

Questions: What does “meant to be” mean? Does it mean relationships just happen, work out somehow, or in what ways do friends have to work at their relationships? How many close friendships can a person have? What qualities do close relationships have? How are they different from other relationships? What do you value most in relationships? Who in your life exemplifies a healthy relationship?

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Music and the Gospel: “This Is Me,” Keala Settle, 3rd Sunday of Easter

In high school many people come together to form their own social groups. These groups, or cliques, often have expectations about how to dress and act and who to include as a friend. Sometimes we have to sort out who we really are and who we like regardless of what other people expect. The song “This Is Me” tells us that we find true beauty and confidence in being we were are meant to be. It celebrates individuality.

Key Lyrics: When the sharpest words wanna cut me down / I’m gonna send a flood, gonna drown them out / I am brave, I am bruised / I am who I’m meant to be, this is me / Look out ‘cause here I come / And I’m marching on to the beat I drum / I’m not scared to be seen / I make no apologies, this is me

Questions: What qualities do you look for in friends? What qualities do people expect from you? When have you tried to be someone you’re not? What is something beautiful about you?

Music and the Gospel: “You are Loved,” Stars Go Dim, 4th Sunday of Lent

God so loves the world that God’s Son becomes one of us. This is Sunday’s gospel message. Jesus’ mission reveals God’s love as he reaches out to all the people he encounters. It doesn’t matter who you are, what you’ve done, or what you’re going through. The song “You Are Loved” reminds us all that God loves and cares for us, imperfections and all.

Key Lyrics: You are loved / If your heart’s in a thousand pieces / If you’re lost and you’re far from reason / Just look up; know you are loved / Just look up; and know you are loved / When it feels like something’s missing / If it hurts but you can’t find healing / Just look up, know you are loved / Just look up, know you are loved


Questions: What relationship does God have with the world? How is this reflected in Jesus’ relationship with his followers? Who shows you love when you feel down? How do you show love to others? What makes relationships difficult?

Music and the Gospel: “Hearts on Fire,” Gavin James

Some relationships bring out the best in us; they teach us compassion and forgiveness. Other relationships challenge our values and perceptions of who we are and what we want. Gavin James’ song “Hearts on Fire” is about relationships and the challenges that occur when we’re pulled in different directions.

Key lines: Strangers in my head / Keep making me forget / Where I came from…/ There’s madness in eyes / We’re too blind to realize / Just what we’ve done… / I feel it taking a hold / I feel a rush in my bones / For you / I think we’re caught in a fight / Can we make it alright / With all these shadows on our backs / How can we take it back and / How can we love with our hearts on fire

Questions: What values do you look for in relationships? When has a relationship challenged you? How did you resolve the challenges? What keeps you centered when facing the demands of others? What does loving someone mean?

Music and the Gospel: “Love,” Lana Del Rey, 3rd Sunday of Lent

This week’s Spirit discusses relationships, dating, and What it means to be in a healthy relationship? The high school years are prime time for making friends and dating. Most of us spend those years within a wide circle of friends and, as we get older, we start to pair off into more exclusive relationships. When we date, we explore and set boundaries, expectations, and priorities. The song “Love” is about being in love and what can happen when we open ourselves up to experiencing love.

Key Lines: You get ready, you get all dressed up / To go nowhere in particular / Back to work or the coffee shop / Doesn’t matter cause it’s enough / To be young and in love / To be young and in love

Questions: What does love mean to you? How do you describe a healthy relationship? How do you identify boundaries between people? Who do you want to be within your circle of friends, family, or with a significant other?

Music and the Gospel: “Elastic Heart,” Sia, 5th Sunday of Lent

All relationships start out on a foundation of trust. We have a right to feel safe and secure. If we don’t, the relationship becomes toxic. Breaking trust changes not only how we view ourselves and others, but it can also leave permanent scars. Sometimes we have people we can turn to, people who will support and help us understand what happened. Other times we may be too scared to go to anyone for fear of judgement and blame. However, by dealing with the experience, we can eventually figure out a way to move past it and rebuild our trust in ourselves and others. Sia’s song is about surviving a difficult experience and finding peace within oneself.

Key Lyrics: And I will stay up through the night / Let’s be clear, I won’t close my eyes / And I know that I can survive / I walked through fire to save my life

Questions: When have you experienced betrayal? How did you handle the experience? Did you tell anyone about it? Why or why not? What helped you move on from the experience? How can you use the experience to help others who may be going through the same thing?

 

Music and the Gospel: “Better Place,” Rachel Platten

In high school people start to branch out from their groups of friends and often pair up. It’s a time to develop a sense of who you are and who you are with a significant other. Spirit discusses relationships this week, what it takes to create a strong and healthy relationship, and (eventually) a strong and healthy marriage. Our attitudes in the teen years can carry over into adult relationships: a kind, considerate attitude will lead to a kind and considerate relationship, whereas a mean attitude can lead to cruelty within a relationship. You become what you do.

Key Lyrics: I hold the love that you bring / But it feels like I’ve opened my eyes again / And the colors are golden and bright again / There’s a song in my heart, I feel like I belong / It’s a better place since you came along.

Questions: What does being in a relationship mean to you? What qualities do you think are important in relationships? What does “love” mean to you? How do you show your love to your family, friends, and significant other?