Community Group Questions 2/26/12

Tip of the Week:
[vimeo http://vimeo.com/37342576]
Announcements:
Please share whichever of the following announcements apply to your group:
  • Student Summer Camp
    • Why do kids need to go?
      • Growing deeper w/ Christ and each other
      • Incredible Speakers/Musicians: Andy Stanley/Phil Wickham/Natalie Grant/Shane & Shane
    • Mark Your calendars for 6/18-22
    • In Daytona Beach
    • Working out financial details
  • Compassion 5k Run/Walk
    • Why do they need to participate?
      • A run with a mission
      • All proceeds go to benefit Compassion’s “Water for Life” Project
    • Sat March 3rd – Meeting at 8:00am. John U. Lloyd State Park
    • Register online at bit.ly/wpcompassion.
    • Cost is $25 per student
    • Beach Hoorah to follow from 12-3pm
    • Students are responsible for their own ride

Sermon Title: Together, Part 3: The Spiritual Stuff

Main Text:  Ephesians 5:25-30

Topics:

  • Christ’s first concern for His bride is how she stands before God.  He removed all obstacles to make sure she stood before God without blemish.  Christ gave Himself up on the cross to make sure we are accepted by God. And because of the work of Christ we stand totally washed clean and resplendent.
  • Why is this Christ’s first concern?
    • What else matters more than how we stand before our Creator, the Almighty God?
    • Everything flows out of our dependence and submission to God.
      • He is our anchor, our peace, our joy.
      • By Him we know how to live.
      • We learn how He wired this planet and how best to enjoy it.
      • Our relationship with God effects every part of our existence.
  • In the same way husbands are to give up themselves to care for their wives and their well-being.  We don’t take the place of Christ, only He can wash them clean.  But in the same way, if Christ’s first agenda for the church is how we stand before God, shouldn’t that be our first agenda?
  • Husbands (and fathers) out of our love for our families, what could be more important to us than the spiritual development of our family?  What is more important than their relationship with their Creator? And we know it will affect every area of their lives.
    • Without knowing the love of God, we cannot love.  We cannot be selfless. We cannot forgive.
    • It is how they will be stable during difficult times.
    • It will drives their work ethic.
    • It will make them selfless and loving to other people
  • Love and Respect
    • Love/Adoration = prioritizing, seeking-out, understand the family’s spiritual needs.
    • Unloving = “the spiritual stuff is her job.”
    • Respect/admiration = encouraging him as he’s trying to be the spiritual leader, seeking his advice
    • Disrespect = being self-righteousness, being biblically, spiritually, theologically belittling.
  • What spiritual leadership is NOT:
    • The Sin-police
    • A Know-it-all
    • Mr. Fix-it
    • A Super-Christian
  • How do I become a spiritual leader in my house?
    • Set an example.
      • You’ve got to be the real thing.  Our families are the first to spot our hypocrisy.
      • You have to be real about your failures, past and present.
      • You have to truly be seeking God.
      • You have to truly be feeding yourself spiritually.
    • Lead to christian community.
      • Lead your family to make your involvement in Christian community a priority
      • Remove the obstacles that are in the way. Put that responsibility on your shoulders. (sports teams, hobbies, weekend travel, family obligations, etc.)
      • How to go to church:
        • Prepare the night before.
        • Get to church early.
        • Talk about it on the way home.
        • Find a place to serve.
        • Take the next step into community.
    • Create opportunities in the home.
  • How do I help my husband lead?
    • Show him respect in this area.
    • Show him grace.
    • Back him up and encourage him as he is stepping out and trying things.
    • Brainstorm with him.
    • Pray for him.
  • What if he’s not leading? What if He’s not a Christian?
    • 1 Peter 3:1-2 says they can be won over by your respect and admiration for them.
    • Trying to step in and force my own leadership, is going to drive him away.
  • What if I’m not married?  Make your personal relationship with God a priority now.  Make your involvement at church a priority now.
  • What do I look for in a guy to know if he could be a spiritual leader?
    • Good questions: Does he have a spiritual drive outside of your influence? Is he actively pursing God and growing?
    • Too high of expectations: he has certain spiritual gifts, he has a certain level of knowledge
  • What if my kids are out of the house now? You are still have a great opportunity to lead your wife and your grown kids (and grandkids!).
  • Where do I start?
    • DTR
    • Other Resources:
      • Men: Disciplines of a Godly Man, Every Man’s Marriage
      • Women: Power of a Praying Wife
      • For Children: Jesus Storybook Bible
Key Questions:

  1. Why do you think that statistically women tend to have more spiritual interest than men?
  2. Read Ephesians 5:25-27. What all was accomplished for us when Christ gave Himself up for us?
    1. (We were washed clean, so we can stand before God unblemished.)
  3. Why is our stance before God, Jesus’ chief concern?
  4. Explain some ways that our relationship with God effects every other aspect of our lives?
  5. Men instinctively feel the compulsion to provide for their wives (and children), in many ways. Why do you think leading the way spiritually is sometimes neglected?
  6. Have you ever seen a good example of a husband leading his family in a spiritual way?  What did it look like?
  7. What are some common obstacles that keep families from prioritizing their involvement in Christian community (Sunday Gathering, Community Group, Student Ministry, etc.)?
  8. How does showing each other love and respect help fuel the husbands role in the spiritual dynamic of a home?
  9. How does the lack of love and respect hinder this?
  10. What are some practical ways you have, or would like to create opportunities to connect with God in your home as a couple (or a family)?

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