Community Group Questions - 4/6/14

FTM-16_9-WP  

Weekly Training Tip

This week we're focusing on Easter and Good Friday services.

Here's the video:

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Announcements:

 

Student Camp

  • This summer our Student Ministry is hosting a Mission Camp June 23-27.
  • Students - registration is open and spots will go fast, so sign up early and make the most of the early bird discounts.
  • Everyone else - we have lots of opportunities to get involved. Check out the information in your bulletin for more details and how to sign up.

Easter Service Times

  • Easter is just 2 weeks away!
  • We’re planning special Good Friday services on that Friday, April 18th at 6:30 and 8PM.
  • We’re also planning a few services for Easter Sunday this year at 9, 10:30 and 12. Please come to the 9 or 12 service to help us leave room for new guests at 10:30.

 

 

Sermon Title: Fear The Moth, Part 2: Combating Materialism

Main Texts: Matthew 6:21-23

Topics:

  • Jesus is teaching us how to handle our possessions and our finances. He talks to us on a strategic level. He reminds us that anything we can invest in here on earth is short term thinking. Those things are fragile. They can break, wear out and get take from us. He urges us to think about investing towards an eternity in heaven. He tells us to put our resources towards things that will still matter 1 Billion years from now.

  • In this next section, Jesus points out a key concept about how we interact with our stuff. He says where our treasure is, there our heart is.

  • Have you ever put money into something and then watched how it changed your emotions and thoughts about it? For example, maybe you invested a little more than usual in a new car, and now you meticulously take care of it.  Maybe you stretched yourself and bought a new kind of computer or phone, and now you refuse to buy the competitor. Maybe you invested in a company and now every time you hear something about it your ears perk up. There is a principle at work here that Jesus talks about. He teaches us that our hearts follow our treasure. When we put money towards things, we become more attuned, more concerned, and more passionate about it.

  • So then that leads us to ask an important question: are our treasures invested in the right things?

  • Jesus warns us about how we get influenced by things. He says our eye is the lamp to the body. It is the source. What comes in through our eye affects the entire body. So we must watch out influences. So often we blindly accept what the influencers around us tell us we want. And the more we let that flood into our system the more that goes from want to need.

  • Often we just let our culture shape what we invest in. And the dangerous part is that shapes where our heart is!

  • The point here is to change your heart. That is what God wants. God is not broke. He does not need anything from us. What He wants is our hearts. He wants to save us from the disaster of getting our hearts set on something other than Him.

  • How do we change our hearts? Start giving towards what God is passionate about, and watch our hearts follow our treasure.

  • How do I give financially?

    1. Step 1: Regularly. Start by giving to God regularly. Make it a consistent part of your worship. Make a commitment about how often you plan to give to God. Maybe it is weekly, or monthly, or when you get a paycheck. Start with regularity.

    2. Step 2: Proportionately. God often encourages us in the Bible to plan a proportion of our income to give back to Him. Prayerfully start with a percentage and dedicate that to God. The Bible often talks about giving in terms of “a tithe” which is 10%. That may be a helpful benchmark.

    3. Step 3: Sacrificially. Ultimately God wants our hearts to change. He wants us to be so hungry for His work, that we give lavishly. That we change our lifestyle to give. That we give in faith and dependence on Him. He wants our priorities to change and be focused on eternity, not on this brief life. Hopefully we continue to give more and more to His Kingdom throughout our lives.

  • The Challenge for This Week:

    1. Change Your Influences: buy the book The Treasure Principle.

    2. Take Another Step in the Fight Against Materialism: Start giving Regularly, Proportionately, Sacrificially, or even more Sacrificially.

 

 

Key Questions:

  1. HIGH/LOW: What was the high point of your week and the low point?
  2. ICEBREAKER: What is something our culture defines as a “need” that is really more of a “want”?
  3. READ: Matthew 6:21-23
  4. When have you seen this principle play out: our hearts follow our treasure?
  5. What do you think are some of the many influences that shape how people spend money?
  6. Which of those do you think is the most influential?
  7. What are some practical ways of limiting poor influences?
  8. How would you define “materialism”?
  9. What is the negative impact materialism has on our lives?
  10. How does giving combat materialism?
  11. Does anyone have an experience of how giving recalibrated their hearts towards God?
  12. Is anyone willing to share about a type of materialism they feel challenged to combat?

 

Don't forget to post your attendance after group.