Community Group Questions 10/16/11

10/16/11 – Just One, Part 4: One Moment Check out this quick video tip for you this week:

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2Plk2J1qVrk&rel=0]

The book recommended today was How to Give Away Your Faith by Paul Little.

Key Text: John 4:7-26

Topics:

  • When it comes to sharing what we believe about Jesus, one of the most difficult things is what to do in that moment.  When we are actually in a conversation and religion comes up, what do we say? In John 4, we watch an encounter of Jesus with the woman at the well and get a great model.
  • Think of a God-conversation like a road trip.  Road trips are as much about the journey as the destination.  While the destination of seeing someone accept what Jesus did on their behalf is the ultimate goal, that is all God’s doing.  All we are responsible for is leaning on God for our part of the journey.
  • Jesus talked to the woman at the well. We have to “Leave the Driveway.”  We have to get out there and interact with those who don’t know Jesus.
  • Jesus broke barriers to talk to her.  And that showed great love. We have to love on them.  It is not about “making the sale.” Sharing our faith is an overflow of our love for people.
  • Once in the conversation, Jesus threw a lure out with an interesting phrase about “living water.”  We have to “Find the On-ramp.” Making the turn in a conversation into spiritual things, can be the hardest part of sharing our faith.  Sometimes the best way to do this is to test the waters with a phrase about spiritual things, to see if they have interest.
  • Jesus made the conversation personal and understandable.  He used an illustration that perfectly intersected with her life.  It wasn’t just theories, it was where she was at. The best way for us to do this is to share our story and our experiences.  Think of it like this, we need to “Get in the Carpool Lane.”  We need to journey with them.
  • Jesus didn’t unload the entire story on the woman all at once.  He didn’t push it to far.  That wouldn’t be following the biblical command of sharing our Hope with gentleness and respect.  It is like being on a road trip, we have to “Go the Speed-limit.”  Don’t go to0 fast or be reckless.  Be patient, God is in control.
  • The woman at the well turned the conversation to a controversial cultural and theological issue, but Jesus kept the focus on the Gospel.  When talking about our faith, we should “Avoid Detours.” Sometimes this is a way to deflect away from personal stuff or even conviction.
  • Finally Jesus introduced Himself as the Messiah.  At some point in the conversation we have to introduce those we are talking to, to Jesus.  We would not want to be on a road trip and never get anywhere.  We need to eventually “Get to the Destination.”  The off-ramp can be tricky but having a few basic questions ready can make that a smooth transition.  Here is one helpful question: “is there anything that would keep you from accepting Jesus today?”

Questions for Discussion:

  • What in this passage sticks out to you?
  • What adjectives would you use to describe Jesus’ approach in His conversation with the woman?
  • When we realize that getting to the destination is in God's hands, how does that change the way we view our role?
  • How does that change the emphasis of our conversation with other people who don't yet know Jesus?
  • Of the various aspects we see in Jesus’ conversation, which is the hardest for you?
    • Leave the Driveway - be out in the world
    • Find the On-ramp - peaked interest
    • Get in the Carpool Lane - listen to their and share your story
    • Go the Speed-limit - don't rush the conversation
    • Avoid Detours - stay on topic/don't get into a debate
    • Get to the Destination - share the full gospel
  • What can you do to get more comfortable with that part of a God-conversation?
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