New Virtue-Initiative

Nope, this doesn’t stand for crime scene investigators, although they certainly have it. It doesn’t stand for College of Southern Idaho, although students there (like anywhere) need it. Nor does it stand for Chi Sigma Iota, though surely an honor society that promotes academic and professional excellence in counseling would value it.

What is “it”? The ability to act on your own. The enterprising spirit needed to take that first step. The ingenuity to imagine how to solve a problem. SEEING what needs to be done and DOING it. In short, initiative.

Now, when you think of God’s myriad virtues, does initiative come to mind? It should! What but a God-sized initiative could have seen the potential of a universe then created it? Who but someone God-sized is ingenious enough to craft each and every one of us by hand and make us each unique? Could someone other than God care enough to lean into our lives, see what needs to be done, and do it–for each one of us, at the same time, on an ongoing basis?

No doubt about it, God has God-sized initiative, and He wants to work initiative into us as well. It’s a key ingredient for becoming the kind of people He wants us to be and for taking part in His big plan. Nehemiah’s life story is a good example.

Here’re some things we think kids need to understand and start putting into practice when it comes to initiative, and each one of these is modeled in Nehemiah’s life:

When there’s a job to be done, first you have to see it. Nehemiah recognized there was a problem in Jerusalem (Nehemiah 1).

When there’s a job to be done, don’t wait for someone else to do it. Nehemiah stepped up to the plate, even though it wasn’t his “job” (Nehemiah 2).

When there are people in need, don’t wait for someone else to help them. Nehemiah did something about other people’s problems (Nehemiah 5).

When you’ve done what YOU can do, trust God to do what He can do. Nehemiah consistently did everything he knew to do and relied on God to do the rest (Nehemiah 6; 8).

So that’s what CSI stands for: can see it. You can see it; you can do it. Can See It + Can Do It.

For more ideas about putting initiative into action, check out our brand new resource coming this fall called CUE Box. Whether you wish to distribute the box to parents or point them to the online experience, CUE Box is filled with activities to help parents and kids interact with each other as they continue to learn about the month’s virtue at home. To find out more or to order CUE Box, go to

Oh, and there’s a fifth week in October (when we’ll be talking about initiative). We’ll switch gears on that fifth week and talk about a “faith skill”: how to talk about your faith.


Melanie Williams
Editor in chief
252 Basics
The reThink Group

By Melanie Williams. © 2010 The reThink Group * * All rights reserved. Used by permission


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