Community Groups Week of Oct. 2nd

Announcements :  

  • Spanish Translation:  Now available during 10:30 & 12 noon services.  
    • You can now invite friends or family members who speak spanish to join us on Sundays!  
  • Baptism Celebration: Coming in 2 weeks -Sunday Oct. 16th after all services!! For anyone interested please note the following class times:
    • HighSchool Baptism class: 10.5.16 at 7pm
    • Adult Baptism class: 10.9.16 at 12noon
    • Kids Baptism class: 10.9.16 at 1:15pm

Please call Pastor Frank with any Baptism questions! 

** Very Important : Please click on the link below for the week # 3 Leader video :  

*Please note we recorded this video before the Community Group quarter began and have since postponed the FPU class to January. Thank you.

[vimeo 182770892 width="640" height="360"]

Main Text:  Daniel 2:1-18

Sermon Title: Messy, Part 3: Permission to Use Discretion

Sermon Topic: (Not to be read or e-mailed to your group … this is for the leader’s review and recollection)

  • Living in exile is messy. It’s not only a challenge to know how to live a godly life, in an environment that is not designed for godliness. It’s also tough to know how to proactively make an impact in that environment. A Christ-follower, is not only supposed to play defense but also supposed to play offense. So how do we know how to seize those moments.
  • Imagine you are in a situation where you have the chance to take a risk and speak up. Maybe it’s a family member that is making some bad decisions and you have the opening to say something to them. Maybe a friend you’ve known for a long time finally cracks open the door to a spiritual conversation. Maybe at work, your boss asks for your input on an ethical decision for the company. How far do you go? What if you say to little? What if you say too much? Maybe as an act of faith we should be reckless. Perhaps we should seizing those rare opportunities and just trust that God will clean up the mess. Or maybe we should trust our instincts and rely on our own read of the situation. But is that leaning on our own understanding and not trusting God? How are we supposed to handle these delicate moments?
  • We can learn a lot from how Daniel operated. He was in a situation that was so delicate, his life and the lives of his friends were on the line.
  • The King had a dream that he wanted his advisors to interpret. He asked them to first tell him what the dream was, and then interpret it. They were all flabbergasted. How in the world could they just know what the dream was, without him telling them. That just made the king furious and he threatened to kill them.
  • The advisors pleaded with the king that no man could do something like that, only the gods could. But when the enchanters, sorcerers, and magicians couldn’t tell him what he wanted. He sent his men out to kill all of the wise men. This would include Daniel and his friends.
  • When Daniel heard about what was going on the passage says that Daniel responded with DISCRETION.”
  • He told the captain of the king’s guard, to set an appointment for him with the king. He would be able to deliver the dream and the interpretation for the king.
  • Immediately, Daniel and his friends came together and prayed. Begging God to give Daniel the interpretation. God did. And Daniel gives a beautiful prayer of thanks to God. Truly no man could do something like this but only God.
  • Daniel comes back to the captain and says, I can show the king what he wants. But when he finally stands before the king, Daniel changes his verbiage. He clearly says that only God could deliver what the king wanted to know. Daniel is simply the messenger. He is nothing special, but God is worthy of praise.
  • Then Daniel reveals the dream and the interpretation. The King is floored. And he actually praises the name of God. He promoted Daniel, who then strategically promotes his friends. What an impact God made. Not only did He bring the king to his knees, but now Daniel and his friends are strategically positioned to continue to influence the Kingdom.
  • In all of this Daniel is praised for his discretion. But what was his discretion? He was strategic with the language he used. When he was finally before the King, that is when he declared the full truth that God was the only One who can interpret dreams. Before then he was careful with his language. He was wise. He was discreet.
  • Discretion is finding the balance between waiting on God and taking initiative. Discretion is finding discerning when taking a risk is wise.
  • We are God’s children in exile. God put us here to be catalysts in messy situations. We are supposed to make an impact. But that doesn’t mean we are reckless and expect God to clean up our mess. It also doesn’t mean we are over-cautious never wanting to ruffle anyone’s feathers. Discretion means boldness. But boldness is not rudeness. Discretion will mean caution. But caution shouldn’t be our cover for cowardice. Discretion means love. But love doesn’t mean the preservation of the relationship is the highest goal. Discretion means being strategic. But strategy is not the same thing as manipulation.
  • God gave us a brain. It honors him when we use it.
  • Ultimately, we rest in the fact that the situation we are in is not our story to control. It is God’s story. We are merely one of the characters. We need to fulfill the role that God has for us. No more and no less. This is the role of faith in the messy situations we find ourselves in.

SUGGESTED DISCUSSION QUESTIONS...

(Please feel free to modify questions to accommodate your specific group!)

HIGH/LOW:     What was the high point of your week and the low point?

Please read:    Daniel 2:1-30 and 2:46-49

  • What was the end result of this episode? What did God do through this situation?
  • Daniel is praised for his discretion. What were the moments that he demonstrated that kind of wisdom?
  • At what four points does discretion intersect? Why are they important to balance?
    • For the leader: (Patience, Passion, Courage & Caution)
  • When you miss the target of discretion, which pole do you typically pull toward?
  • What would be a hypothetical example of a Christian saying too much and being reckless?
  • What would be a hypothetical example of a Christian saying too little and being fearful?
  • What is a situation you’ve been in recently that required discretion?
  • Do you feel like you tend to say too much or too little?
  • What is the role of faith in finding the right response for each situation we encounter?

Theme/Quote:

  • Imagine you are in a situation where you have the chance to take a risk and speak up. Maybe it’s a family member that is making some bad decisions and you have the opening to say something to them. Maybe a friend you’ve known for a long time finally cracks open the door to a spiritual conversation. Maybe at work, your boss asks for your input on an ethical decision for the company. How far do you go? What if you say to little? What if you say too much? Maybe as an act of faith we should be reckless. Perhaps we should be seizing those rare opportunities and just trust that God will clean up the mess. Or maybe we should trust our instincts and rely on our own read of the situation. But is that leaning on our own understanding and not trusting God? How are we supposed to handle these delicate moments? We can learn a lot from how Daniel operated. He was in a situation that was so delicate, his life and the lives of his friends were on the line.

Don't forget to post your attendance after group.