Category Archives: Expectations

Taste Test (DEMO)


LuakAudience

Teens, Adults

Time

10 minutes
Description

This demonstration uses a fake coffee taste test (between Nescafe and Kopi Luak) to make the point that expectations are higher for our customers when we ask them to invest more.  This can be used to talk about meeting customer expectations.

 

Scriptures

  • Matthew 21:18-20 (Jesus’ disappointment with the fig tree that wasn’t bearing fruit in season)
  • John 2:6-10 (The head of ceremonies’ delight at the unexpected surprise of the best wine served last.)
  • Revelation 3:15-16 (Jesus’ disappointment with the church of Laodicea for being lukewarm)

 

Materials

  • Two cups (optional – one ordinary and one elegant)
  • Two spoons (optional – one plastic and one nicer)
  • Hot water (possibly in a pitcher or carafe)
  • Instant coffee (enough for two cups)
  • Copy paper (one sheet, cut in half)
  • Marker
  • Table
  • Optional – other ways to make a distinction between the two cups of coffee (i.e., a doily or handkerchief, a mint or chocolate, etc.)

Preparation

  • Label one half-sheet of paper, “Nescafe.”
  • Label the other half-sheet of paper, “Kopi Luak.”
  • Put the same instant coffee in each of the cups.
  • Prepare your hot water so that it will be ready (and still hot when you do the demo).
  • Set your table with the cups of coffee, and label each with one of the two signs.
  • Decorate the table however you like to make a distinction between the two cups of coffee.

 

Procedure

Use the following script (or modify to suit your needs):

  • “I would like to do a taste test, and I need a volunteer who knows the difference between a regular cup of coffee and an exceptional cup of coffee.”  (Ask a volunteer to come to the front, and then direct your questions to him or her.)
  • “Have you ever heard of a type of coffee called ‘Kopi Luak?’”  (Acknowledge response.  Whether or not the volunteer is familiar with the coffee, you will need to explain for the audience.)
  • “Kopi Luak is a coffee that originates from Indonesia.”
  • “It is said by some that it is the best coffee in the world.”
  • “Kopi Luak means ‘coffee Luak.’”
  • “A luak (pictured above) is a type of cat that lives in Indonesia and eats a large amount of coffee beans.”
  • “After the cat digests the coffee beans and passes them as waste, workers harvest the beans for the Kopi Luak coffee.”  (Ask your volunteer is he/she still wants to be your volunteer for this taste test.  Keep it light, but find another volunteer if this one no longer wants to participate.)
  • “There is something about the acids in the digestive system of the cat that make the coffee beans especially good and flavorful.”
  • “As you can imagine, you have to pay a high price for drinking coffee that has been through a cat’s digestive system!”
  • “A single, small cup of Kopi Luak coffee often sells for over $10 USD.”
  • “I would like to see if this famous coffee is as good as they say, so I’ve brought some in for this taste test.”  (Pour the hot water, and stir your two cups of coffee.)
  • “On the left, I have a normal cup of Nescafe.”
  • “On the right, I have a cup of Kopi Luak.” (Now, address the volunteer again.)
  • “Would you please take a sip of each cup of coffee and let us know what you think of the difference?”  (Have the volunteer describe the difference.  There is a potential here that the volunteer may think there is a difference in taste because you have built up the ‘Kopi Luak’ coffee so much.  If so, try not to embarrass him/her by pointing out that both cups are really just Nescafe.  Focus more on whether or not the volunteer thinks the difference is really worth the difference in price.)
  • “How much would you be willing to pay for the cup of coffee on the left?”  (Allow volunteer to respond.)
  • “And how much would you be willing to pay for a cup of the Kopi Luak?” (Allow volunteer to respond.  Hopefully, the difference in what the volunteer is willing to pay is not as dramatic as the price difference you described.)
  • “It doesn’t taste like the difference between a $1 and a $10 cup of coffee, does it?”
  • “When you pay $10 for a cup of coffee, you expect something spectacular and life-changing!”
  • “It’s disappointing when something is built up and doesn’t deliver on the promises made about it.”
  • “But what if I told you that I was playing a bit of a trick and that both coffee cups have nothing more than Nescafe in them?”  (Acknowledge volunteer’s response, and keep it light to prevent embarrassing him or her.  Then thank the volunteer and let him/her take a seat.)
  • “It’s even worse, isn’t it, when I promise something so different and remarkable but really just repackage the same old, ordinary stuff?”
  • “It’s even more disappointing than if I had told you from the beginning that they were the same.”
  • “There is a lesson in this about how we deal with our customers.”
  • “It’s much better to under-promise and over-deliver than to over-promise and under-deliver.”  (If you want to go deeper with this lesson, have the participants read through the three Scriptures at the top of this lesson and discuss the Debrief Questions below.)

 

Debrief Questions

  1. Why was Jesus so upset in the first two Scriptures?
  2. Why was the master of the banquet so delighted?
  3. How does this apply to how we deal with our customers?
  4. What should we strive to do?
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Filed under Customer Service, Expectations, Revelation, Service

God’s Timing (CHALLENGE)


Time

10-15 minutes
Description

This Challenge makes the point that God’s timing often seems slow to us but that we have to be careful not to rush ahead of God.  Things work out best when we follow closely behind Him.  The challenge is accomplish by staging a “race” between pouring a bottle of ketchup and pouring cups of water.

 

Scriptures

  • Genesis 37-50

 

Materials

  • Bottles of ketchup – 1 per group (The glass bottles are best, because the ketchup comes out much more slowly, and you can’t squeeze them.  However, if you can’t find glass bottles, plastic will work.)
  • Challenge Card (The file for printing is called, “JJ – God’s Timing – Challenge Card (CHALLENGE),” and it can be found on the Lesson and Material Downloads page at www.teachingthem.com.  This can be printed in black and white on regular paper.  There are two Challenge Cards per page.)
  • Prizes – 1 per person – recommend candy or something sweet to eat (The prize is used to create urgency for completing the task.  It should be something the participants are eager to get so that they will want to try to rush the task they are given.  This is to show that we often have to be patient and wait for the good things God has planned for us.)
  • Large, clear, plastic cups – 2 per person and one extra for the group leader (These are to pour the liquid into and from.  Each participant will need one, and one group leader will need one for each group.  The cups can have color, but the kids should be able to see through the plastic so that they can judge their progress against the leader’s cup.)
  • Ziplock bags – gallon size – 1 per group
  • Gallon jug of water – 1 per group
  • Red food coloring – 1 per group (OPTIONAL – used to make the water similar to the ketchup in color but not change the consistency of the liquid.  If you want, you can use this to illustrate that we are like God in some ways, but He is much better and worth waiting for – or so the ketchup commercials used to say.)

 


Preparation

  • Put enough plastic cups (2 for each person in each group plus one extra for the leader) in each of the Ziplock bag.
  • Put a bottle of ketchup in each of the Ziplock bag.
  • Put a bottle of red food coloring in each of the Ziplock bags. (OPTIONAL)
  • Print out the Challenge Card document.
  • Set aside the gallon jugs of water where each group can get them.
  • Cut the Challenge Card document in half (each half is identical), and put one in each Ziplock bag (one per group).
  • Practice the script.

 

Procedure

Use the following script (or modify to suit your needs):

  • “We’re going to do a group Challenge today.”
  • “It’s called, “God’s Timing” and it’s part of the Joseph’s Journey Series.”
  • “First, I’ll need to divide you into groups.”  (Divide the participants into the number of groups for which you have prepared kits.)
  • “Each group will have a Ziplock bag with a Challenge Card, cups, and a bottle of ketchup (and possibly a bottle of red food coloring).”
  • “When I tell you to go, open your Ziplock bags, and read the Challenge Card.” (Allow them to read the Challenge Card.)
  • “Now, you will then have a race!”
  • “Your group leader will pour ketchup out into one of the cups.”
  • “The ketchup represents God’s timing – how fast or slow He chooses to move.”
  • “The ketchup cup represents God’s will.  When it is full, God’s will has been fully accomplished.”
  • “The rest of you will each get two cups and fill one full with water.”
  • “Then you will pour your water from that cup into your empty cup.”
  • “When everyone’s empty cups are full, you will each get a prize.”
  • “Sounds easy, right?”
  • “But here’s the hard part!”
  • “You can’t ever fill your cup faster than the cup that is being filled with ketchup.”
  • “In life, we often want to go faster than God’s timing, but this is a very bad thing to do.”
  • “We have to be patient and wait for the good things God has planned for us.”
  • “In the Bible, Joseph knew when he was 17 years old that he would one day rule over his brothers, but he had to patiently wait for 13 years before God’s will was accomplished in his life.”
  • “Back to our race – If one of your leaders notices that you have gotten ahead of the ketchup, you will have to pour the water back into your first cup and start all over.”
  • “Does anyone have any questions before we race?”  (Answer their questions.)
  • (Then, allow them to fill up their cups and add red food coloring (optional).  You can then begin the “race.”  If anyone’s cup becomes fuller than the ketchup cup, have them empty it and start over again.  If the ketchup just isn’t moving, try slightly tipping the bottle to let more air in to replace the ketchup that is coming out.  (If you have a squeezable bottle, try to squeeze it without being noticed.)  When you are finished, have them answer the Debrief Questions below (also on their Challenge Cards.  The Rhyme Time is to help them remember that God is using even the times when we are waiting on Him.  If we trust Him and obey Him during these times, God will use them to make us ready for His blessings.)

 

Debriefing Questions

 

  1. How difficult was it to wait for “God’s timing” (the ketchup)?
  2. Have you ever had to wait for God to do something in your life?  How did that feel?
  3. Why do you think it’s important to wait for God to work in His time?
  4. How can you be better about waiting for God in the future?

 

Rhyme Time

If we trust Him and obey,

God makes bad things go OUR way!

 

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Filed under Change, Discipline, Expectations, God's Plan, God's Will, Obedience, Object Lesson, Progress, Teaching, Waiting on the Lord

Fortunately-Unfortunately (CHALLENGE)


Time

10-15 minutes
Description

This Challenge teaches what happens to us is not as important as how we respond to what happens to us.  If we trust God with even our “unfortunate” events and circumstances, He can use everything for our good.  Participants will tell a story and take turns making the events of the story either “fortunate” or “unfortunate.”

Scriptures

  • Genesis 37-50
  • Proverbs 3:11
  • Romans 8:28

Materials

  • Challenge Card (The file for printing is called, “JJ – Fortunately-Unfortunately – Challenge Card (CHALLENGE),” and it can be found on the Lesson and Material Downloads page at www.teachingthem.com.  This can be printed in black and white on regular paper.  There are two Challenge Cards per page.)
  • Ziplock bags – any size – 1 per group

 

Preparation

  • Print out the Challenge Card document.
  • Cut the Challenge Card document in half (each half is identical), and put one in each Ziplock bag (one per group).
  • Practice the script.

 

Procedure

Use the following script (or modify to suit your needs):

  • “We’re going to do a group Challenge today.”
  • “It’s called, “Fortunately-Unfortunately” and it’s part of the Joseph’s Journey Series.”
  • “First, I’ll need to divide you into groups.”  (Divide the participants into the number of groups for which you have prepared kits.)
  • “Each group will have a Ziplock bag with a Challenge Card.”
  • “When I tell you to go, open your Ziplock bags, and read the Challenge Card.” (Allow them to read the Challenge Card.)
  • “This challenge is about how God can make good things come out of bad situations.”
  • “We’re going to play a short game called, “Fortunately – Unfortunately.”
  • “First, we have to select the person who will start the game.  I want everyone to hold up one finger.”  (Make sure everyone holds up a finger.  Then have them do the following.)
  • “Now point that finger straight up in the air as high as you can make it go.”
  • “I’m going to count to three.  When I say, ‘three,’ I want everyone in the group to point at the person you think should start the game.”
  • “Ready?  Okay, One….Two….Three!”  (If any groups end up with a tie for the number of fingers pointed at different people, have them do it again until the tie is broken.)
  • “Alright, this person is going to start you off by telling the first part of a story.”
  • “They will tell you about 15-20 words about any topic they want, but the story has to start with, ‘Once upon a time…’”
  • “For example, ‘Once upon a time, there was a man who liked to eat pickled porcupines…’”
  • “Then, that person will stop right there, and the person on their right will pick up the story where they left off.”
  • “But before they tell anymore of the story, they have to say, ‘Unfortunately…’ and then share something unfortunate about the situation or person.”
  • “They will tell about 15 words of why things are so unfortunate, and then they will stop.”
  • “The next person will pick up the story where they left off, but he/she will start by saying, ‘Fortunately…’  Then they will tell us what is so fortunate about the situation.”
  • “This keeps going with each person alternating their stories to be ‘fortunate’ or ‘unfortunate.’”
  • “You will keep going around your group until I say to stop, so you will probably have several tries at making up ‘fortunate’ and ‘unfortunate’ parts of the story.”
  • “The only other rule is that you can’t kill anyone in the stories.”
  • “Does anyone have any questions before we get started?”
  • “Alright, those of you who were picked to start, begin your stories!”  (Allow three to five minutes for storytelling, then ask them to finish the part they are on and turn their attention back to you.)
  • “The point of this game is that there are always two ways of looking at the things that happen in our lives.  You can view almost anything as either fortunate or unfortunate.”
  • “If you search for it, even something very bad can have a fortunate side, particularly if you are willing to trust God with it.”
  • “Romans 8:28 says, ‘And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose.”
  • “The Scripture says that God will works in ‘some’ things for our good, right?”  (The kids should answer, ‘NO!’)
  • “Oh, it says, God works in just the fortunate things, right?” (The kids should answer, ‘NO!’)
  • “In just the things where we make good decisions?”  (‘NO!’) 
  • “What does it say?  …God works in ALL things for the good of those who love Him.”
  • “Sometimes when ‘unfortunate’ stuff happens to us, it’s God’s discipline in our lives, because the Bible says in Proverbs 3:11:  ‘My son, do not despise the Lord’s discipline and do not resent His rebuke, because the Lord disciplines those He loves, as a father the son he delights in.’”
  • “But that means that even when God is disciplining you for your sin, He is doing it for your good!”
  • “And it’s even better if you admit that you sinned and ask for forgiveness.  Then God can really use it for your good!”
  • “He uses EVERYTHING that happens in your life to be a blessing to you!”
  • “So, even when something happens that looks bad, it’s a great idea to praise God for it.  That shows that you trust Him to use it for your good.”
  • “It’s less important what happens to you than how you respond to what happens to you.”
  • (When you are finished, have them answer the Debrief Questions below (also on their Challenge Cards).  The Rhyme Time is to help them recognize that God can use everything to bless them and prepare them for His good work.)

 

Debriefing Questions

  1. Do you think the things that happened in Joseph’s life were fortunate or unfortunate?  Why?
  2. Are there things in your life that looked unfortunate at first but turned out to be fortunate?
  3. How could you look at bad things in your life in a positive way?

 

Rhyme Time

God has a purpose, a plan and a dream; My present struggles are not what they seem!

 

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Filed under Abundance, Attitude, Challenges, Daily walk, Expectations, Failure, Hardship, Joseph, Paradigm Shift, Scarcity