Skip to main content


Showing posts from October, 2008

Heroes: Faith Changes Our Obedience

Today's Passage: Hebrews 11:8-10.
Read more about the call of Abraham in Genesis 12:1-9.

What is the biggest "leap of faith" you have ever taken?

Tell the group about a time you felt like a foreigner.

How do you think Abraham's family and friends responded when he first told them they were moving? What things can a family or friends do that will encourage our faith?

In your mind, what would be the most difficult aspect of moving to a foreign land?

Read 1 Peter 2:11-12. In what way are Christians "living in a foreign land"? As foreigners, what are some specific ways Christians should look and act differently from those around them? Why?

Abraham was called to go to a land that was his "inheritance". How would you describe the inheritance waiting for all who believe in Jesus? (Ephesians 1:11-14; 1 Peter 1:3-5)

Abraham was obedient because he was looking forward to his future with God. Why can reminding ourselves of the future help us be obedient in di…

Growing Closer as a Group

Deepen your group's relationships by trying one or two of these activities this fall:

10. Go around the room and share your spiritual journey in 60 seconds or less.

9. Pick a needy family and come up with a plan for how to bless them this Christmas.

8. Go around the room and everyone share a hidden talent, and demonstrate if possible.

7. Get together for some Sunday afternoon NFL watching.

6. Meet for breakfast at Russ' on a Saturday morning.

5. Have a pizza and bowling night.

4. Meet for coffee before church and then sit together during service.

3. Find someone in your neighborhood who needs leaves raked and bless them as a group.

2. Have a GROUP THANKSGIVING dinner together.

1. Share BHAPR's (big hairy audacious prayer requests). Make them personal, and make them as specific as possible. Have someone in the group track the requests over the course of a few months and watch God work.

thanks to the Simple Small Group blog for this list.

22 Questions For Your Group to Ask

Long before the 20th century church (I know, we're in the 21st century now, but the small group "boom" started last century) was talking about the importance of small groups for discipleship, John Wesley was pushing people into small group relationships for discipleship. In some ways, he's the father of the modern small group movement.
These are 22 questions the members of John Wesley’s Holy Club asked themselves every day in their private devotions over 200 years ago.Am I consciously or unconsciously creating the impression that I am better than I relly am? In other words, am I a hypocrite?Am I honest in all my acts and words, or do I exaggerate?Do I confidentially pass on to another what was told to me in confidence?Can I be trusted?Am I a slave to dress, friends, work, or habits?Am I self-conscious, self-pitying, or self-justifying?Did the Bible live in me today?Do I give it time to speak to me everyday?Am I enjoying prayer?…

Heroes 4: Hebrews 11:7

Heroes 4

1. Read Hebrews 11:7. What do you think is the key word or phrase in this verse? Why?

2. What specific action did Noah's faith cause him to take? Would he have undertaken this project if he didn't have faith in God? Why or why not?

3. What are some specific things you have seen people do because of their faith?

4. Noah was warned of events that were coming, but not yet known. What future events has God warned us about already? How should these warnings impact our lives?

5. How has God used other people to give you a warning? How has He used His Word? How should you respond when someone comes to you with a warning about your future (or your present)?

6. The NIV says that Noah acted out of "holy fear". The NASB and ESV say he acted out of "reverent fear". What do you think it means to have holy or reverent fear of God? When have you felt "afraid" of God? Why? How might fear of God be unhealthy?

REVERENCE -- "profound respect or v…

LIFEgroup Questions for Heroes Week 3

If you could take a one hour walk with anyone who has ever lived, whom would you choose? Why? Why do walks often provide an opportunity to deepen a relationship?

What do you think it means to "walk with God?"

Read Genesis 5:24. If you had to guess, what words do you think could have been used to describe Enoch? Why do you think God was pleased with Enoch?

Often "walking" is used as a metaphor for how we are living. As a group explore the following verses. After reading each verse have a few group members share one or two sentence observations (based on the verses) about walking with God.

* Psalm 1:1-2
* Psalm 23:4
* Colossians 3:5-9
* 1 John 1:5-7; 2:4-6

Faith is the difference between walking with God and expecting God to walk with you.

What do you think it means to "expect God to walk with you?" Do you think there are places we can go where God won't walk with us? Why or why not?

How do we know where God wants us to walk? (Psalm 119:105…

Lessons that T.E.A.C.H.

by Kurt Johnston

Over the years, I've taught a lot of lessons. On occasion, my lessons miss the mark. While there's certainly no magic formula for teaching success, here's a filter that has helped me: I evaluate each lesson by looking at what I've prepared and asking myself, Does this lesson T.E.A.C.H.?

Is it True? Is it biblically sound? Are verses used in context? Is the whole of Scripture considered? When putting a lesson together, it's easy to take verses out of context to prove a point.Is it Encouraging? Does this lesson motivate members toward some action or commitment? If I'm teaching a hard truth, am I doing so in an encouraging way? After all, it's the good news!Is it Applicable? Does this study or lesson apply to the world of the member? Have I made the effort to make a biblical truth actually true to them? Does this lesson equip them to live out their faith beyond the walls of the church?Is it Clear? Is this lesson easily understood? …

LIFEgroup Questions for Heroes Week 2

* When is a time in your life when you felt especially accepted by people around you? When is a time when you felt those around you did not accept you? Why do you think being "accepted" is such an important desire for people?
* Read Hebrews 11:4, then read Genesis 4:3-4. Why do you think we are told that Abel brought the "firstborn of his flock" while Cain only brought some "fruit of the ground."?
* How would you respond if someone gave you a gift that they had already used and abused? Would you feel loved or would you feel unappreciated? Why?
* How are some ways people can offer God the first and best of what they have (time, gifts, resources, money, etc.)?
* How are some ways people often offer God their leftovers?
* If we truly trust God to take care of us, why wouldn't we offer him our first and best? Why do we often not really trust God?
* Does God accept our leftovers? Why or why not?
* What can you do this week to offer God the…

Back-to-School Service

by David A. Wheeler

Would you or your small group like to serve teachers and staff at a local elementary or high school? These ideas can get you started.
Volunteer to feed the teachers on an in-service day. This has been very effective in numerous schools across the country. In one situation, the school became so appreciative that they demanded to feed and serve the volunteers on-site as a reciprocal gesture.Provide donuts and coffee for the bus drivers early in the morning. When one person chose to express appreciation in this way, it caused such goodwill among the drivers that the local paper highlighted her servant spirit and heart for people.Volunteer to run errands or to make copies for class sessions. One busy elementary teacher suggested this.Adopt a teacher and assist with his or her school-supply need. Because of rising costs and spending cuts, many teachers spend $500 to $1,000 each year out of their own pockets to cover unbudgeted school supplies.
-Sept/Oct 2008 Disciple…

Discussion Questions for Sunday's Sermon

1) What is faith?

2) Talk about a life decision you have made because of your faith.

3) When have you been disappointed because you placed your faith in someone or something who was not trustworthy?

4) Read Hebrews 4:14-16. Why is Jesus a trustworthy object of our faith?

5) Read Hebrews 10:19-25. How does having faith in Jesus change our life? What do we gain from our faith?

6) How does faith help you deal with the difficult parts of life?

7) How does your faith affect how you view the good parts of life?

8) How is your life different today because of your faith?

9)What areas of your life are most impacted by your faith? What areas are least impacted by your faith? How can you improve?

Spiritual Formation Survey

Last night my LIFEgroup took the time to work through the spiritual formation survey. As is the case with most people who do this exercise, we weren't terribly surprised by the results, but it was good for us to be made aware of some of the growth areas in our lives. As a result, we made some group decisions about the coming weeks which will help us to better live out our faith.

Your group can do the survey as well! It's free and we'll provide copies for you if you need them. You can check out the survey by clicking the links to the right or by clicking here for the questions and here for the answer book.

Remember, this survey doesn't tell you how spiritual you are, it simply helps you identify strength areas in your life and growth areas in your life. Don't compare yourselves to those in your group, just compare your high scores to your low scores. If you'd like copies for yourself, email me here.