Living It Out – Message Notes and Discussion Questions for the weekend of 01.28.12

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GAPS
TELL
Lee Powell
January 28 & 29, 2012

For God was in Christ, reconciling the world to himself, no longer counting people’s sins against them. And he gave us this wonderful message of reconciliation. For God was in Christ, reconciling the world to himself, no longer counting people’s sins against them. And he gave us this wonderful message of reconciliation. So we are Christ’s ambassadors; God is making his appeal through us…2 CORINTHIANS 5:19,20

WHO? E________________Who Doesn’t Know Christ
Therefore, go and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit.
MATTHEW 28:19

“For God loved the world so much that he gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life.” JOHN 3:16

WHAT? E______________ Is a Sinner, and Separated From God
For everyone has sinned; we all fall short of God’s glorious standard. ROMANS 3:23 For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life through Christ Jesus our Lord. ROMANS 6:23

If you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is by believing in your heart that you are made right with God, and it is by confessing with your mouth that you are saved. ROMANS 10:9,10

WHEN? E______________ Life
Live wisely among those who are not believers, and make the most of every opportunity. Let your conversation be gracious and attractive so that you will have the right response for everyone. COLOSSIANS 4:5,6

WHERE? E_______________
…telling people about me everywhere …Jerusalem …Judea…Samaria… ends of the earth.” ACTS 1:8

WHAT NEXT? T______________ Them and T_____________ Them
Teach these new disciples to obey all the commands I have given you.
MATTHEW 28:20

You have heard me teach things that have been confirmed by many reliable witnesses. Now teach these truths to other trustworthy people who will be able to pass them on to others. 2 TIMOTHY 2:2

 

DISCUSSION QUESTIONS:

1. List the first names of three people in your life who don’t know Christ? How do you think a relationship with Christ would change their lives for now and eternity?

2. We are called to tell the world about Christ, yet most of us hesitate to share our faith. Why?
3. There are lots of reasons why we hesitate to share our faith, however, Jesus commands us to share the gospel message with the world. What would you say to someone who feels very uncomfortable with sharing his or her faith?

4. Discuss a time when you shared the gospel with someone. How did you feel before and after? What happened as a result?

5. One of the most important things we can do is realize that God will create opportunities for us to share our faith if we look for them. Do you have any opportunities this week? Who will you talk to? What will you say?

6. While we are all called to tell the world about Christ, our obligation doesn’t end once we share the gospel message. We are called to make disciples – actually help people grow in their faith. If you are a Christ-follower, who are you discipling right now? If you aren’t, why not?

7. Too often we think we have to know all of the answers before we share the gospel message with others. In reality, we only need to be ‘one step’ ahead. Who should you be ministering to for the purposes of helping them grow in their faith? How can you help them grow?

Living It Out – Message Notes and Discussion Questions for the weekend of 01.21.12

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GAPS
GIVE
Lee Powell
January 21 & 22, 2012

…‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’ ACTS 20:35

E________________________ We Have is God’s
The earth is the LORD’s, and everything in it. The world and all its people belong to him. PSALM 24:1
Everything in the heavens and on earth is yours…Everything we have has come from you, and we give you only what you first gave us! I CHRONICLES 29:11-14
Called to H________________________ God With What We Have
Honor the LORD with your wealth and with the best part of everything you produce. PROVERBS3:9
May your Kingdom come soon. May your will be done on earth,as it is in heaven. MATTHEW6:10
How Much Should I Give?
A P________________________ Amount (T____________,T____________)
…you should tithe, yes… MATTHEW 23:23
Bring all the tithes… I will pour out a blessing so great you won’t have enough room to take it in! Try it! Put me to the test! MALACHI 3:10
A Generous Amount
They are being tested by many troubles, and they are very poor. But they are also filled with abundant joy, which has overflowed in rich generosity. For I can testify that they gave not only what they could afford, but far more. And they did it of their own free will. 2 CORINTHIANS 8:2,3
Since you excel in so many ways—in your faith, your gifted speakers, your knowledge, your enthusiasm, and your love from us —I want you to excel also in this gracious act of giving. I am not commanding you to do this. But I am testing how genuine your love is by comparing it with the eagerness of the other churches. 2 CORINTHIANS 8:7,8
DISCUSSION QUESTION:
ICEBREAKER QUESTION: Talking about money in church is guaranteed to create angst (even anger) among the majority of attendees. What is it about this topic that makes you uncomfortable? If you no longer struggle with talking about the Bible’s teaching on money, share how you overcame your struggle.
1 Honoring God with the “first fruits” is mentioned about 25 times in the Bible. This means that we give to God first and before any other obligations are paid. What is the difference between making it a priority to give/tithe to God first versus waiting to give/tithe God what’s left after you’ve paid your bills?
2 Are you tithing? Perhaps you made significant progress toward tithing? If so, share your spiritual journey in this area as well as how tithing has helped you grow in your faith. If you aren’t tithing yet, share why you are struggling with it.
3 Think about your current “giving gap.” What factors are involved in what your current giving reality is versus what it should be – or could be? (If you are tithing, is God challenging you to become more generous?)
4 Lee shared our current annual giving versus a projection of what our annual giving ($8.8 million vs. $33.5 million) could be if everyone would tithe. How do you feel about the fact that our church isn’t doing well when it comes to being obedient to God in the area of money?
5 What could that mean for our church if we all chose to honor God with our giving? Think about the ways we could live out our mission statement to a greater extent. Would you like to see us be able to help more people through new locations, church plants or ministry to the poor?
6 Here’s the most important question for you: If you are a Christ-follower, are you going to be obedient to God’s teaching on money?
Did you hear this?
Are the following statements True or False?
1. To be a Missional Member at CedarCreek, you must show your W-2.
2. Lee and Joi live in a 30,000 square foot mansion.
Both are FALSE! We do ask people to move toward a biblical tithe but we do notcheck-uponthem! Finally,Lee and Joi live in a 2,400 square foot home valued at $220,00 in Rossford.
All Scripture is from the New Living Translation unless otherwise noted.

Living It Out – Message Notes and Discussion Questions for the weekend of 01.14.12

 

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GAPS
SERVE
Lee Powell
January 14 &15, 2012

I have given you an example to follow. Do as I have done to you…Now that youknowthesethings,Godwillblessyoufordoingthem. JOHN13:15-17

Our Theology of Servanthood Or Why We Serve?

God C_______________________ Us to Serve.

..Do as I have done to you. JOHN 13:15

God E________________________Us to Serve.

In his grace, God has given us different gifts for doing certain things well….If your gift is…(do it well). ROMANS 12:6-8

God R________________________Us For Serving.

…God will bless you for doing them. JOHN13:17

God C________________________ Our World Through Serving

…let’s not get tired…we will reap a harvest of blessing if we don’t give up. GALATIANS 6:9

Where do I (We) Serve? Who do I (We) Serve?

B________________________ theWalls

…one another…(59 times)

B________________________ the Walls

…Go and do likewise. LUKE10:37

 

What Do I Do Next?

Take Inventory of Your Gift(s)

Note: Personal Spiritual Gifts Assessment forms are available at all Welcome Centers.

Take a T____________________ Drive

Check Out One of The Local Community Organizations

DISCUSSION QUESTIONS:

1 Are you currently serving anywhere inside or outside of the church? If so, describe what you do and how you got started.

2 What is the best serving experience you’ve ever had? How were you changed as a result of this experience?

3 Read John 13:1-17. What do we learn about serving from this example of Jesus?

4 Read Romans 12:6-8. In what ways do you believe God has uniquely equipped you to serve His Kingdom?

5 What does it mean to live a life that is “other centered” as opposed to “self-centered?” What changes can you make in your own life to put others ahead of yourself?

Living It Out – Message Notes and Discussion Questions for the weekend of 01.07.12

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GAPS
Love For God
Lee Powell
January 7 &8, 2012

Night and day we pray earnestly for you, asking God to let us see you again to fill the gaps in your faith.
1 THESSALONIANS 3:10

Jesus replied, “‘You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your mind.’
MATTHEW 22:37

GAP #1 LOVE FOR GOD
CedarCreek Mission Statement:: CedarCreek Church exists to help spiritually restless and unchurched people love Jesus, serve others, and tell the world about Christ.

G_______________________________________
Be thankful in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you who belong to Christ Jesus. I THESSALONIANS 5:18

From his abundance we have all received one gracious blessing after another. JOHN 1:16

O_______________________________________
Those who accept my commandments and obey them are the ones who love me… JOHN 14:21

But those who obey God’s word truly show how completely they love him… 1 JOHN 2:5

Loving God means keeping his commandments, and his commandments are not burdensome. 1 JOHN 5:3

Teach these new disciples to obey all the commands I have given you… MATTHEW 28:20

D_______________________________________

And now, just as you accepted Christ Jesus as your Lord, you must continue to follow him. Let your roots grow down into him, and let your lives be built on him. Then your faith will grow strong in the truth you were taught, and you will overflow with thankfulness. COLOSSIANS 2:6,7

All Scripture is inspired by God and is useful to teach us what is true and to make us realize what is wrong in our lives. It corrects us when we are wrong and teaches us to do what is right. God uses it to prepare and equip his people to do every good work. 2 TIMOTHY 3:16,17

 

DISCUSSION QUESTIONS:

1.  At CedarCreek Church, we care about numbers because we know that there are individuals with powerful stories to share behind those numbers. Discuss the stories that you saw and share your own story.

2.  There are some critics that think CedarCreek is just about bringing people to Christ, but not as attentive to helping people grow in their faith. Truth is, we are tenacious about helping people grow in their faith! What do we do as a church to encourage people to pursue a firm-rooted relationship with Christ?

3.  This week’s message was about what it means to love Jesus. Here’s a tough question: How do you know if you love God with all of your heart, all of your soul and all of your mind? (Reference Luke 10:27)

4.  If you have ever loved someone, you’ve either said or thought the following: “If you loved me, you would (fill-in-the-blank).” Think about this statement from a spiritual perspective and complete this statement: “If I loved God, I would __________________.”

5.  Sometimes there can be a confusion between being obedient to gain God’s favor (legalism) and obeying God out of love for Him. How can you know if you are being obedient to God out of desire to gain His favor or out of love and gratitude for Him?

6.  Gratitude is the key to not just loving God, but staying in love with God. In fact, gratitude rehearses the blessings of God. How is it that practicing gratitude can have such a profound impact on increasing our love for God?

 

Challenges for this week:

1. Ask yourself about how you are currently doing when it comes to your love for God. In what areas of your life are you doing well? Where are you lacking? How are you going to close the “gap?”

2. Missional Membership – this is for people who are serious about making a commitment to love Jesus with all of their hearts. Pick up a copy of the LivingItOut Bible study and start the Missional Membership process.

 

Living It Out – Message Notes and Discussion Questions for the weekend of 01.01.12

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Commitment Counts
Barb Roose
January 1, 2012

C__________________________ IS THE PATH LEADS US TO THE “WIN.”

YOU WILL NEVER STAY COMMITTED IF YOU LIVE LOOKING B______________________________. LOOK FORWARD!
No, dear brothers and sisters, I have not achieved it, but I focus on this one thing: Forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies ahead, I press on to reach the end of the race and receive the heavenly prize for which God, through Christ Jesus, is calling us. PHILIIPPIANS 3:13-14 (NLT)

YOU WILL STAY COMMITTED WHEN YOU P_____________________ B___________________ IN THE OUTCOME!
A large crowd was following Jesus. He turned around and said to them, “If you want to be my disciple, you must hate everyone else by comparison—your father and mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters—yes, even your own life. Otherwise, you cannot be my disciple. And if you do not carry your own cross and follow me, you cannot be my disciple LUKE 14:25-27 (NLT)

YOU STAY COMMITTED WHEN YOU D____________________ T____________________ T____________________ THAT COMMITTED PEOPLE DO.
“And now, just as you accepted Christ Jesus as your Lord, you must continue to follow him. Let your roots grow down into him, and let your lives be built on him. Then your faith will grow strong in the truth you were taught, and you will overflow with thankfulness.”COLOSSIANS 2:6-7

WHEN WE ARE PASSIONATELY COMMITTED T____________________________, WE CAN CHANGE THE WORLD!
“All of the believers were united in heart and mind. And they felt that what they owned was not their own, so they shared everything they had. The apostles testified powerfully to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus, and God’s great blessing was upon them all. There were no needed people among them, because those who owned land or houses would sell them.”ACTS 4:32-34

M______________________________ IS THE HIGHEST LEVEL OF COMMITMENT AT CEDARCREEK CHURCH.

All Scripture is from the New Living Translation unless otherwise noted.

DISCUSSION QUESTIONS:

1 At the beginning of each year, most of us think about things that we want to change in our lives. What do you want to do differently this year? Why?

2 While a resolution and a commitment are related, they aren’t the same thing. What is the difference between making a resolution to grow spiritually and making a commitment to grow spiritually?

3 If total commitment to Christ is the path that will lead us to the “win” in our spiritual lives, then why do so many of us stop short of being totally committed to living out their faith?

4 Spiritually speaking, how would you define a “win” for you this year? What kind of commitment would you need in order to achieve that win?

5 In Luke 14:25-27, Jesus lays out the picture of what it means to be totally committed to him. How would you rate your level of commitment to Christ? What do you need to do differently to increase your level of commitment this year?

6 One of the greatest things about CedarCreek Church is our passionate commitment to our mission statement. How have you been inspired or motivated as a result of some of the things we committed to doing together as a church?

7 Becoming a Missional Member of CedarCreek Church is a symbol of your total commitment to your faith as well as being a part of a group of individuals who are totally committed to their faith. Are you a Missional Member of CedarCreek? If not, why not?

Living It Out – Message Notes and Discussion Questions for the weekend of 12.24.11

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What’s So Holy About Christmas?
Lee Powell
December 22, 23 & 24, 2011

 

THE RELEVANCE: _________________________________________
“Jesus Christ is the exact likeness of the unseen God. He existed before God made anything at all, and in fact, Christ Himself is the Creator who made everything…” COLOSSIANS 1:15-16 (LB)

“He became like men and was born a human being.” PHILIPPIANS 2:7 (AMP)

THE REASON: _____________________________________________

“He became a man so that He could take away our sins…” 1 JOHN 3:5 (LB)

Why did He do it?

“God showed how much He loved us by sending His only Son into the world so that we might have eternal life through Him. This is real love… that God sent His Son as a sacrifice to take away our sins.” 1 JOHN 4:9-10 (NLT) For a child is born to us, a son is given to us… ISAIAH 9:6 (NLT)

THE RESULT: _______________________________________________

“We were restored to friendship with God by the death of His Son while we were still His enemies, and we will be delivered from eternal punishment by His life. So now we can rejoice in our wonderful new relationship with God – all because of what our Lord Jesus Christ has done for us…” ROMANS 5:10-11(NLT)

“For this reason God gave Jesus the name that is greater than any other name… (One day) all beings in heaven, and on earth, and in the world below will fall on their knees, and all will openly proclaim that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God.”
PHILIPPIANS 2:9-11 (GN)

 

DISCUSSION QUESTIONS:

1.  Consider the following statement: “Christmas is about Jesus, but Christmas is actually for us.” Lee made that statement during the Christmas Eve message. How do you feel about that statement?

2.  Read Philippians 2:7. In our celebrity-driven society, most of us like to see a show-stopping entrance. However, God came into the world in the human form by being born into it. Why did God come to earth as a baby? What difference does that make to us?

3.  Do you believe that Jesus can relate to your struggles? As a human, Jesus endured the same difficulties we may face. How can you know that you can trust Christ to be there in tough times?

4.  One of the reasons Jesus came is because he wanted to show us what God was like. He also wanted to show us what life should be like and how we can really live. What is the difference between living a “religious life” and the “full life” Jesus wants for us?

5.  Read 1 John 4:9-10. Here is a simple, yet important question: “How can you know that God loves you?” Think about the Christmas Eve message and recall how you can be assured of God’s love for you?

6.  Read Romans 5:10-11. Christmas is God’s gift to us, but an unused gift is a worthless gift. Share how you came to the point when you realized that you wanted to have a personal relationship with Jesus. If you haven’t reached that point yet, discuss any reservations or questions you might have.

7.  Read Philippians 2:9-11. When we say, “Jesus is Lord,” it means that we trust that God is control of our lives and that He love us regardless of our circumstances or shortcomings. Describe the circumstances in your life where you need to proclaim that “Jesus is Lord.”

Living It Out – Message Notes and Discussion Questions for the weekend of 12.17.11

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Home For Christmas
Kyle Gray
December 17 & 18, 2011

 

THE WISE AND FOOLISH BUILDERS

“Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock. But everyone who hears these words of mine and does not put them into practice is like a foolish man who built his house on sand. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell with a great crash.” MATTHEW 7:24-27 (NIV)

Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with that person, and they with me. REVELATION 3:20 (NIV)

Notes: _________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________

DISCUSSION QUESTIONS:

ICEBREAKER:Where is “home” for you this Christmas? Are you traveling somewhere or are others traveling to see you?

1 We’ve all been spiritually homeless because sin separated us from God. However, God sent Jesus from his heavenly home in order to provide a path for our return. Read Revelation 3:20. Talk about the ways you knew Jesus was “knocking on the door of your heart” and what made you decide to invite him into your heart.

2 During this weekend’s message, Kyle talked about a story Jesus told in Matthew 7:24-27. What is the difference between the two homes that were built? Spiritually speaking, how can we know when we are building on the solid foundation of Christ or when we are building our faith on something that won’t last?

3 Jesus knows a quiet, calm heart – a heart that is experiencing the depth of his love and peace. How can you “go deep” with God in order to experience that kind of calm and quiet in all circumstances?

4 One of the ways that we can show that Jesus is at home in our hearts is when we allow his love to shine through us toward others. Talk about all of the ways that we partner together at CedarCreek.tv to show Christ’s love in our community. Which one of those ways inspires you to want to let Christ shine greater in your life?

5 IMPACT419 is a NW Ohio foodrive to help feed OUR hungry at a variety of local locations. Are you planning to be a part of IMPACT419? Discuss ways that you can be a part of this important project!

Living It Out – Message Notes and Discussion Questions for the weekend of 12.10.11

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So This Is Christmas
Lee Powell
December 10 & 11, 2011

For a child is born to us, a son is given to us. The government will rest on his shoulders. And he will be called: Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. ISAIAH 9:6

WONDERFUL COUNSELOR Who Will U______________________________

You We don’t have a priest who is out of touch with our reality. He’s been through weakness and testing, experienced it all—all but the sin. So let’s walk right up to him and get what he is so ready to give. Take the mercy, accept the help.
HEBREWS 4:15,16  THE MESSAGE
Who Will L______________________________ to You

Give all your worries and cares to God, for he cares about you…1 PETER 5:7
Who Will G______________________________You

“…This is my dearly loved Son. Listen to him.” MARK 9:7

MIGHTY GOD… 
Who Empowers You to: S______________________________ One Another

God has given each of you a gift from his great variety of spiritual gifts. Use them well to serve one another. 1 PETER 4:10

T_______________________ P_______________________ about Him

…you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you. And you will be my witnesses, telling people about me everywhere—in Jerusalem, throughout Judea, in Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.” ACTS 1:8

EVERLASTING FATHER
Who Will Never L______________________________ You

…“I will never fail you. I will never abandon you.” HEBREWS 13:5

Who Will Always F______________________________ You

…And while he was still a long way off…filled with love and compassion, he ran to his son, embraced him, and kissed him.
LUKE 15:20

Who Has an E______________________________ Place for You

“Don’t let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God, and trust also in me. There is more than enough room in my Father’s home. If this were not so, would I have told you that I am going to prepare a place for you? When everything is ready, I will come and get you, so that you will always be with me where I am. JOHN 14:1-3

PRINCE OF PEACE
Who Will Give You P______________________________ of Mind

“I am leaving you with a gift—peace of mind and heart. And the peace I give is a gift the world cannot give. So don’t be troubled or afraid. JOHN14:27

Who S______________________________ You (Peace with God)

…we have been made right in God’s sight by faith, we have peace with God because of what Jesus Christ our Lord has done for us. ROMANS 5:1

Titles and names for Jesus the Messiah.
http://www.abetterhope.com/whois/titles.html

 

All Scripture is from the New Living Translation unless otherwise noted. 

DISCUSSION QUESTIONS:

1. As our “Wonderful Counselor” Jesus listens and guides us. He truly understands our human experience! Read 1 Peter 5:7. Discuss a time when you were facing a challenge in life but relied on Christ to lead and guide you through the difficult situation. How did you know you were being led by Christ in that situation?

2 At CedarCreek.tv, we believe that God has called us to share the Good News of Jesus Christ to a lost and hurting world. However, we know that we cannot reach the world on our own. How does Jesus, our “Almighty God” empower us to share the gospel in ways that we cannot on our own? What are some examples that you’ve seen around CedarCreek.tv that demonstrates how our Almighty God was working through us? 

3. Share a time when you relied on Jesus,”Almighty God,” for the courage to share your spiritual journey or invite someone to church and then saw a tremendous turnaround in his or her life. You can even talk about how you have experienced Jesus as Almighty God in your life.

4 What are your spiritual gifts? (We ask this question a lot because it’s important!) As you use your gifts, how do you know when it is Christ’s power working through you rather than just you doing it on your own strength?

5 How have you experienced Jesus’ care and provision in your life? As our Everlasting Father, Jesus says that he will provide and protect us. Are there any areas you need to turn over to Christ?

6 Not only is Jesus our Prince of Peace, but he calls us to take the peace that he gives into the world. How would you explain the peace that you have in Christ to someone who doesn’t understand?

Living It Out – Message Notes and Discussion Questions for the weekend of 12.03.11

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Where Are you Christmas?
Lee Powell
December 3 & 4, 2011

But the angel reassured them. “Don’t be afraid!” he said. “I bring you good news that will bring great joy to all people. The Savior—yes, the Messiah, the Lord—has been born today in Bethlehem, the city of David!” LUKE 2:10-11 “

…Are you the Messiah we’ve been expecting, or should we keep looking for someone else?”LUKE 7:19

WHERE IS GOD WHEN THE WORLD IS COMING APART?

God Has a P______________________________.

…he makes everything work out according to his plan…EPHESIANS 1:11

And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them…ROMANS 8:28

God Is R______________________________ the World to Himself.

For God was in Christ, reconciling the world to himself, no longer counting people’s sins against them…2 CORINTHIANS 5:19A

Yet now he has reconciled you to himself through the death of Christ in his physical body. As a result, he has brought you into his own presence, and you are holy and blameless as you stand before him without a single fault. COLOSSIANS 1:22

God Is Reconciling the World through U_____________________.

…God has given us this task of reconciling people to him….And he gave us this wonderful message of reconciliation… So we are Christ’s ambassadors; God is making his appeal through us…2 CORINTHIANS 5:18B-20

This same Good News that came to you is going out all over the world. It is bearing fruit everywhere by changing lives, just as it changed your lives from the day you first heard and understood the truth about God’s wonderful grace. COLOSSIANS 1:6

God Is Planning a Huge P______________________________ for Us.

“Don’t let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God, and trust also in me. There is more than enough room in my Father’s home. If this were not so, would I have told you that I am going to prepare a place for you? When everything is ready, I will come and get you, so that you will always be with me where I am.” JOHN 14:1-3

…And I saw the holy city, the new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven like a bride…God himself will be with them. He will wipe every tear from their eyes, and there will be no more death or sorrow or crying or pain…REVELATION 21:1-4


DISCUSSION QUESTIONS:

1. What are you looking forward to this Christmas season?

2. The title of the song, “Where are you Christmas?” feels like it could be the theme in many of your lives because life has been pretty tough lately – and the holiday season seems to magnify your difficulties. Is there something about this Christmas season you are dreading or not looking forward to? Our mission at CedarCreek.tv is to proclaim the that Good News of Jesus Christ to a lost and hurting world. List some of the ways that CedarCreek.tv is part of God’s plan to reconcile the world through Jesus Christ. Now, list some of the ways that you’ve been personally involved with God’s plan to reconcile the world to Himself.

4. You saw the story of Brad and Christine Kisabeth, CedarCreek.tv Missional Members who have been through tremendous difficulties. How were you inspired by their story?

5. Read Ephesians 1:9-10. When you think about the current circumstances of your life and how God sent Jesus Christ into the world to bring Good News to everyone, how can you better live out your faith even when your life is difficult?

6. Christmas is a time of year when we run into people we don’t see often. In one minute or less, how would you share the Good News of Jesus Christ this season with someone who feels hopeless and hurting? (Make sure to include an invite to one of our 45 Christmas Eve. Services!)

Living It Out – Message Notes and Discussion Questions for the weekend of 11.26.11

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Gratitude
Ben Snyder
November 26 & 27, 2011

As Jesus continued on toward Jerusalem, he reached the border between Galilee and Samaria. As he entered a village there, ten lepers stood at a distance, crying out, “Jesus, Master, have mercy on us!”

He looked at them and said, “Go show yourselves to the priests.” And as they went, they were cleansed of their leprosy.

One of them, when he saw that he was healed, came back to Jesus, shouting, “Praise God!” He fell to the ground at Jesus’ feet, thanking him for what he had done. This man was a Samaritan.

Jesus asked, “Didn’t I heal ten men? Where are the other nine? Has no one returned to give glory to God except this foreigner?” And Jesus said to the man, “Stand up and go. Your faith has healed you.”LUKE 17:11-1 (NLT)

THE ONE WITH GRATITUDE

He S______________________________.
Taste and see that the Lord is good…PSALM 34:8

He S______________________________.
Give thanks to the LORD and proclaim his greatness. Let the whole worldknow what he has done…PSALM 105:1

It is good to give thanks to the Lord, to sing praises to the Most High.

It is good to proclaim your unfailing love in the morning, your faithfulness in the evening… PSALM 92:1-2

He F______________________________.
For although they knew God, they neither glorified him as God nor gave thanks to him, but their thinking became futile and their foolish hearts were darkened…ROMANS 1:2

He T______________________________= E______________________________
Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus…1 THESSALONIANS 5:16-18

He was S______________________________.
I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do all this through him who gives me strength…PHILIPPIANS 4:12B-13

“In ordinary life we hardly realize that we receive a great deal more than we give, and that it is only with gratitude that life becomes rich.” DIETRICH BONHOEFFER

HELPFUL BOOKS:
One Thousand Gifts Ann Voskamp
Thanks Dr. Robert Emmons

 

DISCUSSION QUESTIONS:

1. What are the differences you sense between thankfulness and gratitude?

2. On a scale of 1-5, how would you rate your awareness of goodness you are a recipient of? (1 = not at all; 5 = very aware)

3. At what point(s) in your life would you say you experienced gratitude the most? What contributed to that? Are you aware of God’s goodness in your life? Is God’s goodness directly related to your current state of physical comfort and happiness?

4. Read John 7:36-50. What does this story teach us about gratitude? What is the evidence of gratitude demonstrated in this passage?

TASK: For the next two weeks set aside five to ten minutes to write down or recall out loud all the good things you noticed happened. Try to think of specific good moments, thoughts, scenes, people, gifts, etc. Prayerfully thank God for them all. Then close your time remembering Eucharist and take communion. You could do this alone or with people you do life with.