Going Deeper – 09.18.2022

Breaking Ground

Who is/was the best boss you’ve ever worked for? Why? 

The Dig

This week, we continued our series Shadowboxing by exploring how the shadow self impacts issues of power. On Sunday, Pastor Mike defined power as the capacity to influence, which means everyone has it in varying degrees. 

Considering this definition of power, why might power be something easily impacted & directed by our shadow selves? 

Next, read Matthew 20:20-28. In this almost comical scene, Matthew provides a clear dichotomy between the world’s & Jesus’ upside-down vision of power & authority. 

Begin by reflecting on the request made by the sons of Zebedee (through their mother no less). 

What do the sons of Zebedee seem to want more power for? How does this reveal the shadow’s impact on their understanding of power & how it’s meant to be wielded? 

Why does Jesus respond so sharply to their request?

Next, reflect on Jesus’ teaching, which he offers after their request naturally produces resentment & internal conflict amongst the disciples. 

How does Jesus’ teaching contrast directly with the behavior & worldview concerning power exemplified in the previous story? Do you have any examples of people modeling the kind of leadership that Jesus lays out here?

How does Jesus turn upside-down our world’s understanding of power & the purpose of wielding it? How does this undermine the shadow self’s attempts to gain & wield power? 

Reflect on where you might need to shadowbox with power. 

Where do you see the shadowside of power most active in your local, national, & global communities? How are you participating in what you identify? How are you practicing its opposite?

In your personal life, where is your shadow directing your understanding of or engagement with power? If you need help: consider situations, events, circumstances, positions, roles, or relationships where you might be imposing yourself too much, not taking enough agency, or ignoring issues created by broken power dynamics because it’s inconvenient or uncomfortable to address them.

How might Jesus’ vision of power provide a healthier path forward in that area of your life? 

Getting Out of the Hole

This week, shadowbox with issues of power & authority.

  • First, take an inventory of your influence. Consider each of the following sources of power & write down which apply to you & how:
    • Positional Power (the power that comes when you’ve been given a specific role or platform that influences others).
    • Personal Power (the power that comes when your gifts or competencies give you authority or influence in a certain area of topic).
    • Spiritual Power (the power that comes when you represent God or faith through your words & behaviors).
    • Projected Power (the power that comes when you’re in a position that lets others project their needs or issues onto you).
    • Relational Power (the power comes when people are vulnerable & share their deepest truths with you).
  • Reflect on each relationship, role, or situation that you’ve written down. How are you wielding your influence in each of these? Are you being intentional & responsible in terms of your words & actions within each? Are you seeking to bless others through your involvement in each one or primarily focusing on your self? 
  • Finally, go back & read Matthew 20:20-28. Pray over, reflect, & journal about how Jesus’ teaching might change your posture in some of these areas where the shadow might be at play. 

Journal, reflect, & pray on how God might be speaking to you through each week’s teaching. Share your experience with your growth group next week!

Additional Resources*

Simple Church: Returning to God’s Process for Making Disciples by Thom Rainer & Eric Geiger 

The Emotionally Healthy Leader by Peter Scazzero

Resident Aliens by Stanley Hauerwas


Coming Up This Week:* 

Sunday, September 25th: Join us next Sunday for the last week of our new series Shadowboxing

* Please see mye3.org for details.