Community Group Questions 3/16/14

Beast Mode Connection Center-TAG Weekly Training Tip

This week we're talking about celebrating baptisms and praying together.

Here's the video:

[vimeo 89226512 w=500 h=281]

Announcements:

*Please let your Community Group know about the announcements that matter to them.

Mission Trips

  • We’ve got 2 trips going to Guatemala and 1 trip going to Burkina Faso, Africa.

  • Both locations will be going to work with organizations that are invested in the communities and that we have strategic partnerships with.

  • We will be going to Guatemala this July/August with Compassion International and working with a project they have there.

  • We will be going to Burkina Faso, Africa in November and working with Sheltering Wings to work with an orphanage and share the gospel with surrounding villages.

  • Both trips will also be a great opportunity to meet the child you sponsor in that country!

  • Specific dates and costs are in your bulletin, as well as instructions to register if you are interested.

  • Please keep in mind that space is limited on these trips so if you are planning to go you want to jump on it asap.

Sermon Title: Beast Mode, Part 4: The Power of Precision and Persistence

Main Texts: Matthew 6:11, Matthew 7:7-8

Topics

  • In this model prayer Jesus teaches us how to pray.

  • He tells us to not heap up empty, meaningless prayers. We should pray like we mean it!

  • He teaches us to start off by remembering who it is that we are praying to. He is our intimate Father. His love for us eclipses the love of an earthly parent for their child. At the same time He is the Awesome, Almighty One, Who easily manages the universe. Starting with praise, fuels our prayers.

  • We learn from Jesus the mechanics of prayer. We should most want His plan. We pray to Him, pouring out any request that is on our hearts. But it is not in an attempt to coerce God. We are pulling ourselves closer to Him. Prayer is about submission not control. We trust that He is placing things on our hearts to pray for.

  • The next lesson Jesus teaches us is about what to do when there is something on our hearts. We are to pray with PRECISION and PERSISTENCE.

  • Jesus asks for our daily bread. Notice how specific that is, especially for such a short prayer. He doesn’t ask simply for blessing, or provision, or food. He asks specifically for bread. The reason for such a level of detail is that He is modeling how precise we should be in our prayers.

  • Sometimes we pray, “God bless my friend Ned.” But that is so imprecise how will we ever know if God answered it. We should pray more specifically. Are there specific situations that we want to see God move in? How exactly do we want to see Him move? Is there a timeframe we feel inspired to ask God to move in?

  • Isn’t this moving more in the direction of controlling God? Not if our mindset assumes that it is God that put that level of precision on our hearts. It takes more faith to pray Precision Prayers.

  • Also notice that Jesus said, give us “this day” our “daily” bread. That fact that it is for this day is strongly emphasized in this verse. If He is praying for bread today, it is assumed that He will be praying for bread tomorrow. Jesus also teaches us to, “Ask… seek… knock.” There seems to be an increasing level of intensity in those verses. It’s an invitation to dig in and pray with determination. Sometimes God wants us to beat the door down!

  • Praying Persistent Prayers also takes great faith. Sometimes it is hard to persevere. It takes faith that God is still listening, and that He is working in His timing.

  • Persistent Prayers is an act of submission to God. It says: “I believe You put this on my heart to pray for. So I will keep praying, knowing it will be Your timing not mine.” When I quit often praying it is because God didn’t move fast enough for my preferences.

  • Beast Mode Challenge for Week 4:

    1. Make It Razor Sharp - Pray Precision Prayers

    2. Beat Down the Door - Pray Persistent Prayers

Key Questions:

  1. HIGH/LOW: What was the high point of your week and the low point?
  2. ICEBREAKER: What story of persistence inspires you?
  3. READ: Matthew 6:11
  4. Of all the things Jesus could have asked for in His model prayer, why do you think He worded it like that?
  5. What are examples of ambiguous imprecise prayers we pray?
  6. What are ways we can make prayers more precise?
  7. Why do Precision Prayers require more faith?
  8. Why do we sometimes lose steam and lose interest in our prayers?
  9. Why do Persistent Prayers require more faith?
  10. What are some practical ways to keep us more persistent in our prayers?
  11. Does anyone have a story of how you saw God work through Precision Prayers or Persistent Prayers?
  12. What is a Precision Prayer, you are going to pray for this week?
  13. If you could ask the group to persistently pray one thing for you everyday this week, what would it be?
  14. GROUP IDEA:
    • take prayer requests (make sure someone is writing them down)
    • open up the floor, having someone else start the prayer time, and ask the group to jump in and pray for requests with precision
    • then you close and pray for the other requests that were not mentioned

Don't forget to post your attendance after group.