The perfect balance

Science with a twist

For this activity, you’ll build a model balance scale large enough for stuffed animals to sit on, then find the perfect balance point between pride and self-doubt.

Discussion point: God wants us to ask Him for help when our thoughts start to get prideful or anxious.

  • Roll up a thick bath towel up (width-wise) and place it on a solid surface.
  • Next, place the lid of a large storage container across the rolled towel. (If you centre the lid on the towel, it should be easy to find a balance point.)
  • Send your children to collect stuffed animals and dolls to be weighed on your scale.
  • Line the toys up to wait for their turn on the scale.
  • Before weighing any of the toys, explain to your children that one end of the balance is called “over-confidence” or “pride.” The other end is called “under-confidence” or “self-doubt.” The centre of the balance is the perfect sweet spot called “humble confidence.”
  • After making sure your children understand which end of the scale represents pride and which end of the scale represents doubt, have your children take turns bringing an animal, doll or other toy to the scale. Your job, as the parent, is to express thoughts for each toy out loud. Using the scenarios in the chart below, have a doll say, for example, “I’m so pretty I’m sure everyone likes me.” Your children must then decide where that doll will sit on the scale.
  • Feel free to use your own ideas too, tailoring them to your children’s specific successes and struggles. For further discussion, you could also ask how the different prideful or doubting attitudes could be corrected to find a perfect balance.
Scenario Examples of pride Perfect balance Examples of self-doubt
Solving a problem “I can do it on my own. I don’t need God’s help!” “God is great! With God’s help, I can do it.” “I can’t do it! Not even with God’s help.”
Playing on a team “I’m valued for what I have and what I do.” “This is really hard for me, but I’m going to ask God to help.” “I’m not valuable. I have nothing to offer others.”
Meeting for a play-date “I’m so pretty I’m sure everyone will want to play with me.” “I’m going to ask Jesus to help me be kind on my play-date today so my friend enjoys playing with me.” “I don’t have any nice clothes to wear. The other kids won’t like me because I’m not as cute as the other girls.”
Faced with learning something new “I’m smart. Everyone should listen to my instructions.” “God has given me an ability to think well, but it doesn’t mean that He loves me more than He loves others.” “I feel like I am dumb. I will never understand this game.”
Attitude to possessions “See my new truck? Do you like my tractor too?” “Even though I like my new toy a lot, I’m going to ask God to help me to remember to share it.” “I know for sure that if I share this toy with that kid, he is going to break it.”
Inviting guests over “Everyone likes to play at my house because we have the best toys.” “Even though we don’t have the latest and greatest toys at our house, I think my friends will have fun because I’ll be a thoughtful and kind host / hostess. “I don’t want to have a friend over because I don’t have any fun toys.”
Questions for discussion
  1. Where do you think God wants you to sit on the scale?
  2. Is there one end of the scale where you are often tempted to sit?
  3. How can you make sure that you end up in the “perfect balance” spot?
Key concepts

Under-confidence is lack of trust in God. Over-confidence or pride is thinking too much of ourselves and considering ourselves valuable because of what we have or what we can do. We find balance when we think highly of God and humbly of ourselves.

God wants us to know that He loves us just as He created us. He wants us to ask Him for help when our thoughts and attitudes start to get prideful or anxious. His plan is for us to trust Him to help us be who He planned us to be and to do the jobs He has planned for us to do.

Close your time by praying and asking God to help you all find the perfect balance, humbly honouring Him with all He has blessed you with, and trusting Him when you are tempted to feel inadequate.

Note: For maximum benefit from this activity, you may want to first review one of these three Bible stories from this lesson:

Ahab’s foolish confidence (Ahab thought, I can do it on my own. I don’t need God’s help.)

Moses feels mouse-y(Moses thought, I can’t do it – not even with God’s help.)

Asa has an A+ attitude!(Asa’s attitude was, God is great! With God’s help I can do it!)

Relevant Scripture

Romans 12:3 “For by the grace given me I say to every one of you: Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought, but rather think of yourself with sober judgment, in accordance with the measure of faith God has given you.”