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Character Matters
March 1, 2009
Character Trait – Determination:
Check It Out. – What Does It Mean? – Why Does it Matter?


Have your student work a crossword puzzle or work one together with your younger child. Afterward discuss how each word had to fit into a certain number of boxes and had to fit the clue. The number of boxes and clue acted as boundaries that helped you decide the correct answer.

Now have your student look up the word determination in a dictionary. Somewhere in the definition it should refer to boundaries. In fact, that’s the literal meaning of the word in Latin. Webster’s Unabridged Dictionary (2nd edition) defines determination as “the mental habit of settling upon some line of action with a fixed purpose to adhere to it.”

Being determined is a way of setting boundaries around your actions and behavior in order to keep you moving toward your goal or destination.

Read Philippians 3 as a family. If you have an Amplified Bible, look up verse 10 and read it aloud. Paul says that his determined purpose is to know Christ and the power outflowing from Jesus’ resurrection. In the next few verses, Paul admits that he isn’t there yet. Things don’t go as smoothly as he wishes. But what does he do? He presses on, determined in his purpose.

Commit verse 14 (or 13 and 14 for older students) to memory. Younger students can practice their handwriting skills by writing these verses on lined paper and then making a fancy border or boundary around the passage.
KEY WORD: character, values, determination

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