Life Group Leaders Weekly
Week Five (October 17 - October 24)
"TO CULTIVATE MEANINGFUL RELATIONSHIPS CENTERED ON GOD'S WORD AND PRAYER"
LIFE GROUP UPDATE
Hello Life Group Leaders!
We are already in week FIVE of Life Groups! That's more than halfway. Wow! I hope and pray that the Lord continues to do good work in and through your groups, our church, and our local community.
I am going to speak [type?] to you today on playing good DEFENSE as you care for your group. It's a little more of a sobering topic today, but absolutely essential, especially considering the weight of this semester's sermon series. So, a few things:
- Confidentiality - Now that you've been meeting for a few weeks and are likely getting more comfortable with members of your group, consider this: As group discussions continue, it might be good to simply reflect on the covenant and remind group members that what happens in the group stays in the group. Remember that nothing will destroy a group faster than a breach of confidence!
- Speaking of Pit Stops - I know we are only entering week 5, but that is officially the halfway mark of the semester. If you ever have any comments, questions, suggestions, or just want to talk, please know that we are here to help any way we can. We are so encouraged to have such a strong core of leaders who are committed to Christ and his people. We want to support you any way we can!
- Leader & Host Appreciation Week - Next Sunday, October 24th, we would like to honor you, our Leaders and Hosts for your commitment and support to this ministry and to our church community. A small token of our appreciation will be presented to you during our morning worship service, next week. Thank you for all that you do!
GOALS FOR THIS WEEK
- Relationships! - Set aside ample social time for group members to mingle and to get to know one another each week.
- Prayer - Thank God for how he has brought your group together.
- Homework - Remember, it's not about answering all the questions. Let the homework be a resource to help engage our mission statement, not an end to itself.
THIS WEEK - Week Five
Breaking Strongholds - LGBTQ: Gender & Human Trafficking
Incarnation is arguably the greatest single achievement of our Creator…at least with regard to what we know of Him so far. In essence, our humanity is wrapped up in our “in-flesh-existence.” Even the angels think this is an amazing accomplishment. Our enemy has always looked for ways to injure, alter, mar, and maim humanity in the essence of our incarnation. Jesus comes in the flesh to restore and advance our basic humanity so as to prepare us to withstand the rigor of eternity. Our sexuality is inseparable from incarnation (Genesis 1:27: “made in the image of God, male and female he created them”).
*The Additional Self Study Section and Group Prayer sections of this week's homework guide were not included in the Sermon Guide. They are included here in your Leaders Notes and will also be posted on the website under the Sermon Guides as well as your Leaders Tools.
Studying Further (Optional Additional Self-Study)
- Read Ephesians 5:22-33. How are the commands to wives and husbands different? Is there significance to these differences?
- Read Romans 14 (the entire chapter). What does this passage say about judging others? While there are specific examples used in this chapter, are these truths about judging others farther-reaching or, even, universal? How can the truths of this passage apply to this week’s topic of gender and/or sexual identity and people who believe differently than we do about these matters?
Joining Together in Prayer (weekly meditation)
Lord, I pray that You would unlock my heart that I might be fully alive to my true identity in You. Give me a clear revelation to see myself the way You see me. Help me to stand in Your truth against all enemy attacks and guard my heart with all vigilance (Proverbs 4:23). Teach me to hear Your voice and not believe the enemy’s destructive lies about who I am. I thank You for my uniqueness and that I am made in Your image (Genesis 1:27). I want to understand and feel the deep things in Your heart for me (1 Corinthians 2:10-12). I choose to believe the truth about how You see me. I thank You that I can hope in the future and believe in the good destiny that You have for me. You have a vision for my future. Help me to live a fruitful life now and overflow with Your love to others. Give me greater authority in my prayer life. I want to know You on a deeper level, and I don’t want anything to hinder my relationship with You. Thank You for this new identity I have in You. Help me to live out this truth in my life every day. In Jesus’ name, amen.
THINGS TO REMEMBER
MISSION - To Cultivate meaningful relationships centered on God's Word and prayer": Help us avoid "Mission Creep". Mission creep is the idea that despite articulating a mission or vision, over time it will turn into something else. In the context of groups, we may eventually find ourselves spending the majority of our time on other meaningful issues such as: answering all the questions, evangelism, discipleship, or issues pertaining to our society/world. While each of these is important, we encourage you to help us and your groups avoid mission creep by spending group time on what matters most - relationships centered on God's Word and Prayer.
GROUP CARE: When life happens to one of your group members (hospitalization, moving, or going through transition) help your group mobilize into a care unit that makes meals, visits, prays, and maybe even sends cards/letters. Not only will this bless you and them richly, but your group will also be meeting legitimate needs for one another in the context of Christian love and service while growing together as a group.
Serve opportunities look a little different this year because community contact has been limited out of concerns for COVID-19. As needs arise we will reach out to your groups. If you'd like to get a few people together from your group to serve should the needs arise, great! OR (this semester) if your group has personal ideas for how to serve and would like to serve together, we encourage you to do that too. *Please be mindful of serve opportunities that require participants to contribute financially as it may make some uncomfortable.
LEADER TOOLS - Our Leader Tools Page is updated weekly on our church website.
- Leader's Weekly
- Sermon Guide
- And more!
Check out our Leader Tools Page here: http://hanfordcrc.org/lifegroups/leader-tools
**For group participants that are not currently attending our regular Sunday morning services, or who were unable to attend, please invite them to find the homework guide online here: http://hanfordcrc.org/livestream/sermon-guides