Community Group Discussion Questions
December 10th & 17th, 2017: WAKE UP FROM YOUR SLUMBER
- Are you a night owl or an early bird? Have you always been that way?
- Why would Paul call the present time night? What is the “sleep” that Paul says we need to wake from? What does he mean when he says that it’s time to wake up?
- What are some things that we do during the night that we don’t during the day? What are the ramifications of having both an active nightlife and having responsibilities in the morning? What parallel would Paul want us to draw with regards to our spiritual lives?
- In verse 13 Paul notes three pairs of activities Christians should avoid. How are bad temper and jealousy just as destructive in a Christian community as drunkenness and sexual immorality?
- Paul’s solution to avoiding the activities of the night is to “put on the Lord Jesus” (v. 14). How are we to do this? What is the relationship between already being saved and putting on Jesus?
- Why must one not “think” about how to gratify the desires of the sinful nature?
What are some excuses that a Christian may give for not stepping out in faith? What are some excuses that you have been giving? Is there a step that you sense that God wants you to take?
The Long Night Is Past
- What was your favorite part of The Long Night Is Past?
- What questions or insights did you get from The Long Night Is Past?
December 3rd, 2017: LIFE OUT OF LOSS
Main Idea: Our outward loss does not limit our inner potential.
- What are some things that we lose throughout our lifetimes that cause us to grieve?
- Most of us respond to grief in one of two ways: denial or despair. How do you tend to respond to pain—do you tend to ignore it or feel hopeless because of it?
- Read John 12:23-24. What was the comparison that Jesus drew between himself and a grain of wheat? How was his death more fruitful than his life?
- Jesus’ resurrection from the dead gives us a new paradigm for grief: tragedy and loss is not the final word. What are some examples in life where loss leads to greater beginnings? How can Jesus’ death and resurrection give us hope that our grief is part of a greater purpose?
Application Step One: Tell God how you really feel.
- Read 2 Corinthians 4:7-12. What does Paul mean when he says, “we have this treasure in jars of clay”? What are some qualities of a “jar of clay”? Why would we not typically put a treasure in a jar of clay?
- What in your life makes you feel like a jar of clay? What has caused you deep pain and grief?
- Paul clearly went through a lot of physically and emotional suffering. What did clearly stating his grief allow him to do immediately after? Why do you think it’s important to openly acknowledge our grief?
- What good did Paul see in his suffering? What is one way that suffering has made you a better person? What is one way that you can help others through the ways that you have grieved?
Application Step Two: Don't excuse harmful behavior.
- What kinds of temptations do we typically face when we are grieving? Why do you think we try to excuse inappropriate behavior when we are grieving?
- What is one temptation that you are currently facing that we can pray for?
Application Step Three: Focus on what really helps.
- In this prayer time, we are going to pray for ourselves. Going around in a circle, share with God a way in which you are grieving and how you are feeling. Ask for his help to resist temptation and to see hope in the midst of the pain. If you would like, feel free to say “pass”.