Adult & Teen Discussion Guide
1. Primary Statement
Have you ever felt the need to do something, but didn’t follow through because the cost was too high? Everything has a cost – whether money, time or energy – and whether something “costs a lot,” or “costs too much” often depends on who’s asking.
2. Bible Verse
Matthew 10:8 [NKJV] “Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out demons. Freely you have received, freely give.”
Matthew 16:24 [ESV] “Then Jesus told his disciples, ‘If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me.’”
When God asks something of us, it often comes at a high cost. We have to remember who’s asking, though – not only is He God the Creator, but He’s the Savior, who has given us so much.
Q. What’s something God has asked of you that cost a lot?
Q. When you consider what God has freely given you, does that cost seem greater or smaller?
2 Corinthians 9:6-8 [ESV] “Each one must give as he has decided in his heart, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.”
Who’s asking doesn’t just determine what we’re willing to give, it determines how we feel about giving it. God isn’t after reluctant givers, obedient givers, or even willing givers. He wants our partnership with Him to be something we celebrate – to give because we love Him.
Q. Have you ever said “yes” to God’s commands because you felt obligated to? In that moment, did you think of Him more as “God the Creator” or “God the Savior?”
Q. What steps could you take this week to redirect your heart to serve God more joyfully?
4. Prayer Focus
Take a few minutes as a family and thank God for blessing you in so many generous ways. Ask the Holy Spirit to develop inside of you the willingness and joy to say “yes” to whatever He commands.
Family with Small Children Discussion Guide
1. Power Verse
Romans 16:20 “The God of peace will soon crush Satan under your feet…”
Watts Up: “The Devil Is A Liar, And He’s UNDER MY FEET!”
In our series, “Soul Food”, we learn that swagger is one of the key ingredients for a healthy Christian life. Swagger is how someone looks, feels, and acts when they know they are going to win. It’s the way they carry themselves, the way they react to difficulties, the way they handle it when their enemy comes against them. In the Bible Story, you will see a man who has been attacked by the enemy (the devil), but when Jesus sets him free, he develops some swagger by knowing that Jesus has and will take care of him when he faces difficulty.
2. Bible Reading
Read: Luke 8:26-39
26 Jesus and his disciples sailed to the area of the Gerasenes across the lake from Galilee. 27 When Jesus stepped on shore, he was met by a man from the town. The man was controlled by demons. For a long time he had not worn clothes or lived in a house. He lived in the tombs. 28 When he saw Jesus, he cried out and fell at his feet. He shouted at the top of his voice, “Jesus, Son of the Most High God, what do you want with me? I beg you, don’t hurt me!” 29 This was because Jesus had commanded the evil spirit to come out of the man. Many times the spirit had taken hold of him. The man’s hands and feet were chained, and he was kept under guard. But he had broken his chains. And then the demon had forced him to go out into lonely places in the countryside.
30 Jesus asked him, “What is your name?”
“Legion,” he replied, because many demons had gone into him. 31 And they begged Jesus again and again not to order them to go into the Abyss.
32 A large herd of pigs was feeding there on the hillside. The demons begged Jesus to let them go into the pigs. And he allowed it. 33 When the demons came out of the man, they went into the pigs. Then the herd rushed down the steep bank. They ran into the lake and drowned.
34 Those who were tending the pigs saw what had happened. They ran off and reported it in the town and countryside. 35 The people went out to see what had happened. Then they came to Jesus. They found the man who was now free of the demons. He was sitting at Jesus’ feet. He was dressed and thinking clearly. All this made the people afraid. 36 Those who had seen it told the others how the man who had been controlled by demons was now healed. 37 Then all the people who lived in the area of the Gerasenes asked Jesus to leave them. They were filled with fear. So he got into the boat and left.
38 The man who was now free of the demons begged to go with him. But Jesus sent him away. He said to him, 39 “Return home and tell how much God has done for you.” So the man went away. He told people all over town how much Jesus had done for him.
Q. Who ran up to Jesus as he got off the boat?
Q. Where had he been living?
Q. What did the demon-possessed man say to Jesus?
Q. What did Jesus do to help the demon- possessed man? Where did the demons go?
Q. What was the man doing when the people from the town came to see?
Someone with “swagger” knows they are on the winning side. They look past things that stop others because they already know they are going to win. You can have “swagger” because Jesus has already defeated the devil. In fact, if you look in the back of the book (the Bible), WE WIN! Jesus defeated the enemy, and we share in that victory as followers of Jesus!
Q. What are some difficult or impossible circumstances you might face?
Q. How should you respond when faced with difficult and impossible circumstances?
4. Prayer Focus
Lead the children in a prayer of celebration and thanksgiving that Jesus IS victorious and that WE WIN!