Month: October 2018

10.28.2018

GOING DEEPER

10.28.2018 | “How to be Human | Wk 8 | Do Not Steal”

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Breaking Ground

Do you have any stories—positive or negative—of an experience with giving that has left an impact on you? Share any brief stories of giving.

 

The Dig

Read Matthew 6:19-24

What “treasures” (not just money: stuff, experiences, skills, etc.) do you tend to collect?

How do you think v20 “works” in real life? How do our hearts get attached to the places where our treasures are?

What are some practical ways that you can move your treasures from “earth” to the Kingdom?

In verses 22-23, Jesus hints at a phenomenon that can happen. Rather than thinking of our eyes as something that just looks out at the world, Jesus is also reflecting on the fact that our eyes also let light into our bodies. In other words, where we focus our attention shapes our existence.

In terms of giving and generosity, how does your attention affect your willingness and/or ability?

In verse 24, Jesus lays out a strong contrast between God and wealth.

Why do you think he draws such a strong contrast here?

What are some practical ways that you’ve seen money compete with God in your life?

How do you think you can monitor your loyalties?

 

Getting Out of the Hole

This week, monitor your loyalties, and look for ways to PRACTICE GIVING, remembering that we do not give to earn God’s love, but as a RESPONSE to that love and in imitation of God’s character.

10.21.2018

GOING DEEPER

10.21.2018 | “How to be Human | Wk 7 | No Adultery”

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Breaking Ground

Do you remember your first kiss? What 3 words would you use to describe it?

 

The Dig

In regards to this commandment (“Do not commit adultery”)—and also how Jesus expands it in Matthew 5—what are some specific ways that we fail to treat each other as human beings?

What do you think it costs us when we use other people?

In Romans 14, Paul describes how highly he values other people. Without going into detail, the subject here is what people choose to eat (as well as choosing to honor certain days). This was highly controversial material in the early church. Read verses 5 through 21.

From these verses, how do you think Paul thought of other people?

What is the basic reason that Paul says to consider others (HINT: it rhymes with “verse 15”)?

Our humanity is firmly established in Genesis 1 and 2, when we are told that God creates human beings (male and female) in His image. We have his DNA, and this DNA is the basis for treating each other with the complete honor and dignity that we all deserve, and to always repent—turn away from—any behavior that would use a child of God for our own gratification.

Is there any area of your life (besides the physical or sexual area) where you are tempted to use people?

What is it costing you? What can you do to change it?

Can you ask for help from someone?

 

Getting Out of the Hole

Be aware of your (very human) tendency to use others.

Commit to listening, really listening to people when they are in pain.

10.14.2018

GOING DEEPER

10.14.2018 | “How to be Human | Wk 6 | Do Not Kill”

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Breaking Ground

Something different: How did you see God in this past week (yes, in the storm!)?

How did you see people serving each other? What stories did you see/hear?

 

The Dig

If the commandments are (as we are maintaining) “invitations to be truly human”, in what ways does anger and contempt rob US—and not just those to whom we show contempt—of our humanity?

Do you have a problem with anger? More accurately, what tends to trigger your anger?

Many scholars consider the book of Romans to be a “masterpiece” from Paul. It is an in depth and thorough description of God’s saving activity in the world, and the text is full of critical texts for believing people.

Romans 12 begins with a very important and strategic “So”, and it is not accidental: Paul is drawing a conclusion to the previous eleven chapters, and giving his readers (the church) some application points.

Read Romans 12:9-21, and as you do have someone write down all of the action items that Paul lists.

Which of the list do you find compelling? Why?

Which of them do you find intimidating? Why?

How can living out verses 16-17 impact our discussion regarding anger and contempt?

 

Getting Out of the Hole

Examine your life in regards to contempt, and commit to honoring others truly as brothers and sisters. Listen, be curious, and create opportunities for sincere, honest interactions.

Make a commitment to attend our movie event this Friday night. Come with an open and humble heart.

10.07.2018

GOING DEEPER

10.07.2018 | “How to be Human | Wk 5 | Honor Your Father & Mother”

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Breaking Ground

What was your favorite class in middle school, high school, or college? Why?

 

The Dig

Think of a time when someone gave you a piece of wisdom that changed how you saw a situation. Who was it? What did they tell you?

Who do you go to for advice when you need help? What characteristics do you look for in a person that you seek advice from?

In Proverbs, the author repeats over and over again the importance of being willing to seek out & accept wisdom from people who have walked before you. In fact, it often cites this as one of the most obvious factors in leading a spiritual life. Read Proverbs 4:1-13.

What stands out from these verses? Why does the author seem to think wisdom is so important?

How good are you at discerning whether a piece of advice is “wise”? How do you make that determination? How good are you at acting upon good advice?

Read Titus 1:5-8. Many theologians make the point that Scriptures argue that “growing older” does not inherently make someone an “elder” or “wisdom teacher.” Rather, it is a responsibility that takes growth, & living a life that speaks for itself. Having walked the path of growth yourself is crucial for helping others along it.

Do you feel that you have many “elders” or “wisdom teachers” in your life? What characteristics define them (i.e., peaceful, calm, hospitable, compassionate, honest, etc.)?

How are you doing at fostering those characteristics? Where do you need to grow in order to become someone who can pass on wisdom to those that are coming up behind you?

 

Getting Out of the Hole

Take time this week to think over who in our community, or another community you belong in, that you could turn to for advice in a present struggle in your life. Reach out to them & set a time to get coffee & just talk this week.