Month: January 2019

01.27.2019

GOING DEEPER

01.27.2019 | “First Things First | Wk 4: Creative Living”

Join the community and go deeper with this Bible study.

Breaking Ground

What does it “creativity” mean to you? What does it mean to be creative?

 

The Dig

“Our job is to live creatively in response to the Gospel.”

What is your reaction to this statement? Where (if anywhere) do you see this being lived out around you?

From the point of view of faith, to live creatively is to live a life of invitation (evangelism, or sharing our faith), but it’s interesting to see how Jesus talked about invitation, compared to the way we often experience it in our culture today.

Read Matthew 11:28-30.

What is your reaction—in your heart—to these verses?

In what way is following Jesus “restful”? How could you invite someone you know to also “rest” in Jesus’ teaching?

God Himself refers to the spiritual life as a banquet, a feast, a party.

Read Isaiah 55:1-3.

What do you notice about this imagery?

How would this picture of the Kingdom of God appeal to someone in your circle of influence?

So, there are two important metaphors in the Bible of life with God: rest, and also a feast. Most people don’t mind at all being invited to rest, or attend a dinner party, if we go about making the invitation in a thoughtful way.

 

Getting Out of the Hole

On Sunday Eric mentioned that creativity in regards to evangelism/invitation could simply equal:

You (your strengths, passion, gifts), PLUS
Your context (your relational world, work, neighborhood), PLUS
The Gospel = Creative Invitation

Get specific: what gifts, passions, hobbies, etc., do you have?

Who do you know (that could use some spiritual “rest” or a “feast” in the Kingdom)?

How could you combine these two into an environment where people could be invited to take a step on their spiritual journey? Share your answers with each other, then support each other during the week as you seek to creatively engage people.

 

Additional Resources

ON CREATIVITY:
You can find Fredrik Haren’s talk about creativity on YouTube; just look for his name and “2017 GLS”.

The Idea Book by Fredrik Haren.

How to Think Like Leonardo Da Vinci: Seven Steps to Genius Every Day.

ON THE EARLY CHURCH:
The Emergence of the Church by Arthur Patzia

 

What’s Going On This Week (see MYE3 for more details)

NEXT Sunday: Chili Cookoff 6PM (NOTE: If you’re looking for an EASY opportunity to introduce someone to E3, this is a perfect event for you!)

01.20.2019

GOING DEEPER

01.20.2019 | “First Things First | Wk 3: Vision Sunday”

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Breaking Ground

What brought you to E3? How did you find out about it, and why did you come back?

 

The Dig

After Jesus radically changes and heals his life, the Gerasene man asks to come with Jesus to be a disciple. Instead, Jesus tells him to go home to his “own people,” and to “tell them what the Lord has done for you and how he has shown you mercy.”

In another part of the New Testament, the Apostle Paul writes to a church that they should remember that, “you who were once so far away have been brought near” by Jesus’ sacrifice (Ephesians 2:13).

Part of being a faith community—and part of inviting others to be a part of that community as well—is (a) telling “your own people” (b) what God has done for you, or how he has brought you from far away to “near”.

What surprises you about this? In other words, what are some ways that you’ve seen (or experienced) invitation done badly? Have you ever been invited to experience Jesus in a way that didn’t seem, well, inviting, and maybe was even hurtful?

How is Jesus’ instructions to the Gerasene, as well as Paul’s reminder, different from what you experienced?

In light of this, talk about these simple questions:

Who are “your people”? Who—outside of the church—are you in relationship with? Who do you resonate with, whether through activities, interests, or values?

If you were given the opportunity, how would you describe what God has done for you? How has he brought you from far away to near?

Is there anyone in your relational world that could benefit from an encounter with Jesus?

Spend some time praying for the people—including ourselves—that come to mind.

 

Getting Out of the Hole

In which of the main parts of E3’s discipleship process—Worship, Growth Groups, or Service—do you need to take a step forward?

What is stopping you? What would it look like to move more deeply into this part of your journey?

Commit to moving forward, and share your decision with a trusted friend or Growth Group leader for accountability.

 

Additional Resources

Mark for Everyone (NT.Wright)

 

What’s Going On This Week (see MYE3 for more details)

Fri – Race Dialogue Panel Event

01.13.2019

GOING DEEPER

01.13.2019 | “First Things First | Wk 2: Suffering and ‘The Beautiful World'”

Join the community and go deeper with this Bible study.

Breaking Ground

Catch up from the holidays: What were some of your high points of Christmas/New Years?

Were there any low points or struggles?

 

The Dig

On Sunday, Eric introduced the concept of the “40% Factor”, which is basically the idea that when your brain tells you, “You’re done, you can’t do any more,” you are actually only at 40% of your potential.

So if you can run 4 miles and your brains says, “that’s it,” 4 miles is actually only 40% of your true capability (10 miles).

If your brain tells you that after 1 hour of studying you’re at capacity, you actually have the capacity to study for 2.5 hours.

What if this applied to spiritual growth as well?

What if, instead of declaring, “This is as loving/ compassionate/kind/giving/etc. as I’ll get,” you instead recognized that you are capable of much, much more?

Do you have an area of your life in which you have experienced a “40% moment”?

What is it?

In truth, the Bible tells us that we are actually capable of even more than that. Each person—every human being on the planet—contains inside of them God’s DNA.

Read 1 John 3:9.

The seed of a plant contains its DNA, its genetic blueprint. The seed of an oak tree looks nothing like a 200 year old specimen, but the potential is all there.

John plays this thought out in an interesting way: read 1 John 4:7-8.

If God is love, and we have the genetic blueprint/DNA of God inside us, how loving are we capable of becoming?

We are not discounting our brokenness or our mistakes. “First things first” is about choosing to believe that life change is possible, and to wrestle with the question, “What is my life actually capable of becoming?”

Is there any area of your life that you desire to see significant growth and change?

 

Getting Out of the Hole

Don’t settle for last year’s life. Choose discomfort and commit to growth, and also choose to break it down into daily habits and choices to bring about the change you’d like to see.

Pursue a life of impact and fulfillment in God’s Kingdom.

 

Additional Resources

The Spirit of the Disciplines by Dallas Willard, and a Celebration of Discipline by Richard Foster are two in-depth studies of how we can partner with the Holy Spirit to see true life transformation.

In addition, How People Grow by Henry Cloud, is a great practical trainer on how to experience life change.

Here are some New Testament scriptures that hint at how we should view suffering:

1 Corinthians 12:9-10
Hebrews 13:12-13
1 Peter 1:20b-21
1 Peter 4:1-2
James 1:2-4
Luke 9:23-24 (also found in Mark’s and Matthew’s gospel as
well).
Ephesians 5:1-2

Lastly, you can hear a little of David Goggins’ story here: https://youtu.be/vyJ_hhninDw

01.06.2019

GOING DEEPER

01.06.2019 | “First Things First | Wk 1: Impact, Influence + Fulfillment”

Join the community and go deeper with this Bible study.

Breaking Ground

Catch up from the holidays: What were some of your high points of Christmas/New Years?

Were there any low points or struggles?

 

The Dig

The Bible tells us that human beings are full of truly amazing potential.

1 John 3:9 tells us that we—all of us—carry within us the seed of God’s life.

Another translation puts it this way: “Those born from God don’t practice sin because God’s DNA (his “genetic character”) remains in them.”

How would you summarize this verse? What do you think it means to have God’s genetic character?

The seed of a plant contains its DNA, its genetic blueprint. The seed of an oak tree looks nothing like a 200 year old specimen, but the potential is all there.

John plays this thought out in an interesting way: read 1 John 4:7-8.

If God is love, and we have the genetic blueprint/DNA of God inside us, how loving are we capable of becoming?

Without discounting our brokenness or our mistakes, “First things first” is about choosing to believe that life change is possible, and to wrestle with the question, “What is my life actually capable of becoming?”

Is there any area of your life that you desire to see significant growth and change?

If you’ve been successful at seeing change in this area in the past, what are some habits and systems, etc., that have been particularly helpful?

If you have struggled to see sustained change in your life, can you name what it is that’s been holding you back?

What is ONE habit or “force multiplier” that you could implement in your life to help move towards this goal?

 

Getting Out of the Hole

Commit to a goal and to life change. Remember that God has always used “everyday people” to accomplish amazing things in the world, and that means YOU are as much of a candidate for impact, influence, and fulfillment as anyone else.

Write down a goal (or two), share them if you’d like, and keep them around: we will revisit them over the next Sunday or two!

Also, we would LOVE to hear any of the goals you’d love to share with us; you can Tweet them to us (@e3rightnow), post them on our Facebook page, or send them through good old e-mail.

 

Additional Resources

The Spirit of the Disciplines by Dallas Willard, and a Celebration of Discipline by Richard Foster are two in-depth studies of how we can partner with the Holy Spirit to see true life transformation.

In addition, How People Grow by Henry Cloud, is a great practical trainer on how to experience life change.

A couple of great resources of growth and change in life include: The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People (Stephen Covey); Switch: How to Make Change When Change is Hard (Chip and Dan Heath); Make Time: How to Focus on What Matters Every Day (Jake Knapp and John Zeratsky).