Building A Principled Family Life - A Study in Seven Sessions for Small Groups - Henri Schauffler

Session 1 - Preparation for Marriage and Family: The Character of Love


If you could liken your mood right now to a ride in an amusement park, which would it be? Why?

Tell the group one to three things about yourself / your life to help them get to know you. Try to be short and to the point.


Why did you decide to come to this meeting?

What would you like to get out of this group?


But the Lord said to Samuel, “Do not consider his appearance or his height, for I have rejected him. The Lord does not look at the things a man looks at. Man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.”
(1 Samuel: 7)

If I speak in the tongues of angels and don’t have love, I am only a resounding gong. … If I have a faith that can move mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. If I give all my possessions to the poor and surrender my body to the flames, but have not love, I gain nothing.

Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices in the Truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails.
(I Corinthians 13: 1-8)

We should live according to the truth and we should love others. Without the fundamental way of living for the sake of others, we cannot prosper. The person who lives the truth will become the subject, with more power for life. Also, the subject must have the power of love. The responsible leader and central figure must become the embodiment of truth, life and love. All these things can be summed up in one simple phrase: Live for the sake of others. When you practice this way of life, you create harmony.
(Rev. Sun Myung Moon, July 1, 1984)

In our world, selfishness ruins everything. Selfishness in the family causes disharmony, which then erupts into bitterness and strife. Everyone wants to be served instead of serving others. Wives tell their husbands what to do and then seek to be served. Husbands want to be served by their wives. Parents expect service from their children and the children take their parents for granted. This is demonstrated in our families, in our societies, and in our nations.
(Rev. Sun Myung Moon)

God wanted Adam and Eve, the first man and woman, to mature in purity, centered on true love. He wanted Adam and Eve to become true people. He created this beautiful and delicate natural world as the environment for their biological growth. Human beings were to grow and develop within this environment.

God's central concern, however, is with human beings' internal character. By experiencing true love, God intended that we would come to reflect His true love and grow to perfection. God created the power of love to be the strongest of all forces. Through the experience of such power of love within the realm of Heaven's love and law, people are to increasingly resemble God, their Parent. To possess unlimited true love, people first must learn to be responsible.

When human beings come into oneness with God through true love, they resemble Him and become the perfect embodiment of true love, with wholesome character. Thus we can say that God’s love is the essence of human happiness, life and ideals.
(Rev. Sun Myung Moon, August 31, 1996)


The Bible says that love is patient and kind, that it protects, hopes, trusts, and perseveres. Think of a time you can remember when one of these aspects of love came to you in someone you know.

The Bible also says that love does not envy, does not boast, is not proud, is not rude, is not easily angered, and is not self-seeking. Think of a time you can remember when one of these aspects of bad character was shown in someone you know.

Remember a time of love in your family. What conditions led to it?

Remember a time of difficulty in your family. What conditions led to it?

What aspects of character are most important for us to become a loving person?

Rev. Moon states that we should become “true people.” How have you seen this “trueness” in someone you know? Think of specific people and avoid abstract answers.

ACTION STEP: Think of a specific positive character trait you’d like to develop this week, or a negative one you’d like to get rid of.

Describe it here ____________________________________________

Use Benjamin Franklin’s character development method this coming week: put notes to yourself all over the place (bathroom mirror, refrigerator, car dash, prayer room, etc.). Remind yourself every day, all day for one week that you’re working on this trait. See how you’ve changed at the end of seven days! 

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