Your Bible students may be able to name the top influencers on social media, but that doesn’t necessarily mean they understand who influences them or how much they allow others to influence their choices in life. There is an activity you can do to help them better understand who is impacting their choices and whether that is helping or hurting them spiritually.
You can introduce the discussion by looking at the friends of Job and his reaction to their suggestions. What were they trying to convince him to do? Why was he resistant to their suggestions? How did he filter their ideas in order to please God?
Have students list everything and everyone they believe influences them in some way. Unless they are extremely self aware, their lists will probably not include some more subtle influencers. What about their textbooks? Books they read? Content they view? The order of their Google search results? Displays in their favorite stores? Comments they overhear? Patterns they notice (like many people their age are wearing a certain item, etc.)?
Next have them assign a percentage weight to each influence(r) on the list. In other words, what percentage of the time do they think each person or thing on the list influences them when they have a choice to make? If God was not on their original list, have them add Him and assign a percentage to Him, too.
As a comparison, have them give the same weighted scores to how they think God wants them to allow those things or people to influence them. If the scores are different, why? What is the danger from giving too much weight to anyone or anything other than God? What would it look like to filter all of their choices through a godly world view (by the way, only 6% of Christians currently have a biblical worldview)? Would any of their recent or upcoming choices be different if they had filtered (filter) them through what God would want? If so, why? Why do they sometimes ignore what God wants and accept the influence of other people instead? What is the danger in ignoring God’s influence?
As you can imagine, this needs to be an ongoing conversation. Making them aware of whom they are allowing to influence them can help them make more intentional and better choices. It’s worth taking the time and effort to encourage them to use God as their number one influencer.