Adult & Teen Discussion Guide
God’s vision for Abundant Life in 2018 is big – reach 700 people with the good news of God’s salvation and disciple them. In order to do our part to see that vision become reality, we’ve got to overcome 3 predicaments our culture is entrenched in.
1. The Relationship Predicament
As technology changes communication, more and more people are becoming isolated. It was Jesus’ prayer for the church that we would be united, working together.
John 17:11 (ESV) Holy Father, keep them in your name, which you have given me, that they may be one, even as we are one.
Q. Do you feel connected or isolated in life? Is the church a factor in that feeling?
Q. Is forming friendships easy or difficult for you? If it’s easy – how might you be able to help others who are less comfortable making friends? If it’s difficult, what are some steps you can make to overcome that challenge?
2. The Transformation Predicament
Many Christians are full of information about God, but show no transformation in their lives. If we’re going to preach a gospel of life change, we need to model it.
Q. Which areas in your life are visibly different than unbelievers because of God’s influence? Which areas are not? If those areas changed, would your example to outsiders be stronger?
3. The Consumer Predicament
Our modern world is training us to expect people and organizations to serve us, instead of training us to serve others. Jesus modeled and taught a life that put others first.
John 7:38 (ESV) Whoever believes in me, as the Scripture has said, ‘Out of his heart will flow rivers of living water.’
Q. In which ways does the church exist to benefit you? In which ways are you a part of the church body to benefit others?
Q. If your mentality became 10% less consumer-minded and 10% more servant-minded, what kind of difference would that make in the lives of others? What difference would it make in the fulfillment of God’s vision for Abundant Life?
Take a few minutes as a family: thank God for a compelling vision to change lives in our community this year. Ask the Holy Spirit to help us as a church overcome these predicaments together.
Family with Small Children Discussion Guide
Don’t Be a Stink Bug!
1. Power Verse
Philippians 2:5 “You must have the same attitude that Christ Jesus had.”
Watts Up: “I Will CHOOSE A Good Attitude!”
This week, we continue the series called, “Bugs.” In this lesson, we use the stinkbug to help us remember that we have a choice whether or not we have a “stinky” attitude.
2. Bible Reading
Read: Job 1
The Story Begins
1 There was a man who lived in the land of Uz. His name was Job. He was honest. He did what was right. He had respect for God and avoided evil. 2 Job had seven sons and three daughters. 3 He owned 7,000 sheep and 3,000 camels. He owned 500 pairs of oxen and 500 donkeys. He also had a large number of servants. He was the most important man among all the people in the east.
4 His sons used to give feasts in their homes on their birthdays. They would invite their three sisters to eat and drink with them. 5 The time for enjoying good food would end. Then Job would make plans for his children to be made pure and “clean.” He would sacrifice a burnt offering for each of them. He would do it early in the morning. He would think, “Perhaps my children have sinned. Maybe they have spoken evil things against God in their hearts.” That’s what Job always did for his children when he felt they had sinned.
6 One day angels came to the Lord. Satan also came with them. 7 The Lord said to Satan, “Where have you come from?”
Satan answered, “From traveling all around the earth. I’ve been going from one end of it to the other.”
8 Then the Lord said to Satan, “Have you thought about my servant Job? There isn’t anyone on earth like him. He is honest. He does what is right. He has respect for God and avoids evil.”
9 “You always give Job everything he needs,” Satan replied. “That’s why he has respect for you. 10 Haven’t you guarded him and his family? Haven’t you taken care of everything he has? You have blessed everything he does. His flocks and herds are spread all through the land. 11 But now reach out your hand and strike down everything he has. Then I’m sure he will speak evil things against you. In fact, he’ll do it right in front of you.”
12 The Lord said to Satan, “All right. I am handing everything he has over to you. But do not touch the man himself.”
Then Satan left the Lord and went on his way.
13 One day Job’s sons and daughters were at their oldest brother’s house. They were enjoying good food and drinking wine. 14 During that time a messenger came to Job. He said, “The oxen were plowing. The donkeys were eating grass near them. 15 Then the Sabeans attacked us and carried off the animals. They killed some of the servants with their swords. I’m the only one who has escaped to tell you!”
16 While he was still speaking, a second messenger came. He said, “God sent lightning from the sky. It struck the sheep and killed them. It burned up some of the servants. I’m the only one who has escaped to tell you!”
17 While he was still speaking, a third messenger came. He said, “The Chaldeans separated themselves into three groups. They attacked your camels and carried them off. They killed the rest of the servants with their swords. I’m the only one who has escaped to tell you!”
18 While he was still speaking, a fourth messenger came. He said, “Your sons and daughters were at their oldest brother’s house. They were enjoying good food and drinking wine. 19 Suddenly a strong wind blew in from the desert. It struck the four corners of the house. The house fell down on your children. Now all of them are dead. I’m the only one who has escaped to tell you!”
20 After Job heard all these reports, he got up and tore his robe. He shaved his head. Then he fell to the ground and worshiped the Lord. 21 He said,
“I was born naked.
And I’ll leave here naked.
The Lord has given, and the Lord has taken away.
May the name of the Lord be praised.”
22 In spite of everything, Job didn’t sin by blaming God for doing anything wrong.
Q. What happened in Job’s life?
Q. What kind of attitude did he have?
All of us have bad days. Sometimes our hair won’t cooperate. Other times, we face difficulties with people we work with. Every day we are tested to see if we will have a Godly attitude or not.
Too often, we let our attitudes be determined by what our day is like. If things go well, we have a great attitude. If things go badly, we have a stinky attitude. Our attitude is a choice. It is not determined by others. We should have the same attitude that Jesus had – no matter what!
Q. What determines your attitude?
Q. Do you normally have a stinky attitude?
Q. How can you change your attitude?
4. Prayer Focus
Lead your child in a prayer of repentance for having the wrong attitude at times. Pray that God will help them to choose the right attitude, just as Jesus did. Pray that with God’s help, they will make the right choice for the right attitude and never ever be a stinkbug.