ENGAGE INSPIRE


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Life Group Sermon Study

Struggling Toward Maturity May 10-11, 2014

Break the Ice:

ENGAGE

(The purpose of these first questions is to help your group open up. Please don’t feel like you have to ask each question. Once you feel like the group is ready, move onto the “Inspire” section.)

• What did God teach you during the message this weekend? Did anything in particular stand out? Prayer: Take some time to pray for God to speak to your group through this week’s study. Questions:

IN SP IRE

(Since the group may need time to process each question, don’t let silence scare you. Try to avoid filling the space with unnecessary explanation or moving on from the question too quickly.)

1. Read Colossians 1:24-25. • What are some of the most difficult things you have been through in your life? • Did you have a relationship with Christ during that time(s)? If so, how did that impact the way that you endured those struggles? • What is the greatest struggle that you fear having to potentially experience someday? Do you think your faith in Christ could pull you through that potential struggle? Why or why not? Aaron said, “Paul rejoiced in his suffering, not because he enjoyed hardship, but because it brought the gospel to people all over Asia (of which the Colossians were a recipient) for the good of the church.” • Have you had the opportunity to share the gospel with someone because of the suffering you have experienced in your life? Share. Aaron said, “Paul was glad to suffer in order to share the knowledge of Christ to the world. Most of us have a very individualistic view of our salvation. Conversion most definitely has an individual element, but it doesn’t stop there. It can’t stop there. We aren’t saved merely for ourselves. We are to make the Word of God fully known.” • Is it difficult or easy for you to share Christ with others? Why? • What are the reasons that you come up with for not sharing Christ with others? Are they valid reasons or can you dismantle them? • Do you believe the good news of Jesus is worth sharing to others? Why or why not? • What needs to change for you to confidently and continually make the Word of God fully known to others?

2. Read Colossians 1:26-27. Aaron said, “It was all a mystery until Jesus came. Jesus lives out the perfection of the law, takes on our sin, satisfies God’s justice, conquers the grave and sends the Holy Spirit to reveal our need for a Savior and to seal that salvation within the hearts of men and women.” • How was the gospel delivered to you? • Did you believe right away or was it a process before you finally believed it and owned it? • What can you learn from your own conversion and how can you apply that in making the Word of God fully known to others?

3. Read Colossians 1:28. Aaron said, “Maturity is gaining a perspective, by way of teaching, that provides me with knowledge or wisdom about reality. We mature when we come to understand that we are going to die apart from God’s grace and mercy. We mature when we grow in our understanding of who God is, who we are, what we deserve, what He could do … but what He has ultimately done for us.” • Why is it necessary for us to continue growing in maturity in Christ? Why is it necessary to help others grow in theirs? Who is helping you grow and whom are you helping? Aaron said, “The Bible is sufficient. The Bible doesn’t tell us everything that can be known, but it tells us what we need to know in order to be reconciled to God and one another. Our desire is that our church would continue to develop an appetite for God’s Word. To understand it and apply it for the purpose of maturity in Christ.” • Are you developing an appetite for God’s Word, to understand it and apply it for the purpose of maturity in Christ? Share.

Life Group Sermon Study

Struggling Toward Maturity May 10-11, 2014

Application:

EQUIP

(These questions will challenge your group members to apply the study to their daily lives. It is highly important that you go over this section with your group each week for the group study to be a success. Set aside 15-20 minutes at the end of your study to go over this section.)

Read Colossians 1:29-2:5. Aaron made these two statements: o Maturity is revealed by what I agonize over. o Maturity is revealed by what I’m struggling to attain. • What do you agonize over? What are you struggling to attain? • Is your main focus in life to grow in your maturity in Christ or is it something else? • What action steps do you need to take to grow in your maturity in Christ? Prayer: Take some time to pray over each group member’s identified action steps and life issues. Equip Your Mind: “Him we proclaim, warning everyone and teaching everyone with all wisdom, that we may present everyone mature in Christ.” (Colossians 1:28, ESV)