We read this statement together before every group discussion. It helps transition the group to discussion time, it reaffirms our highest values, and sets a tone of trust, consistency, and safety for everyone in the group.
We are a group of imperfect people pursuing a perfect God. We exist to help each other find and follow Christ. These are some things we want to be true of our group:
- We create a safe and honest environment, staying transparent and authentic.
- We keep it inside the circle. Confidentiality is necessary for a healthy group.
- We look together to the Bible for help and guidance, and keep out our own politics, sales, or agendas.
- We do not try to fix each other, preach sermons, or give unsolicited advice. We instead encourage, listen to, and celebrate each other.
- We handle conflict between us quickly and honestly by going to the person, owning our part, and practicing forgiveness.
- We respect each others’ time by starting and ending when we say we will.
- We trust that it is God’s role to change people, not ours.
- We believe that in Jesus Christ, there is hope for everyone.
- What is your main take away from our time reading and studying of Present Over Perfect?
1. How would you summarize Part 6: Throwing Candy?
2. What are some passages in Part 6: Throwing Candy that stuck out to you the most? Why do you think they had an impact on you?
3. In the chapter “Essential Self” Shauna challenges readers to, “Look at your deepest dreams, and who you’ve always been- the things you love even though no one else does, the times in your life when you feel the most beautiful, even if no one else thinks so.” What are those things for you? How can knowing what those things are change the way you make decisions or live your life?
4. In the chapter, “New Fuel,” Shauna poses the question, “What powers our work when it’s no longer about addiction to achievement?” What is your answer to that question? What powers your work when it's not about addiction or achievement?
- Scripture For Reflection: “And what do you benefit if you gain the whole world but lose your own soul? Is anything worth more than your soul?
- Matthew 16:26
5. In the chapter “And The Soul Felt Its Worth” Shauna notes, “‘The whole world’ is essentially all the things that you’ve ever wanted- whatever success means to you, or the good life, or what it looks like to live the dream. Many of us have been living the life we’ve always wanted, or so it seems. But just under the surface of that lovely life is exhaustion, or isolation, or emptiness. It doesn’t matter how pretty things look on the outside if on the inside, there’s an ache from a lifetime of trying to prove your worth.” What are some things that threaten your soul? (i.e. exhaustion, secret keeping, image management) What are some things that help bring your soul back to life? (i.e. honesty, connection, grace)
- Scripture For Reflection: “Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you’ll recover your life. I’ll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me- watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won’t lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly.”
- Matthew 11:28-30 (The Message)
6. The verse above (Matthew 11:28-30) is clear that Jesus offers rest to the weary who are willing to spend time with Him. When will you "keep company" with Him this week? What does that look like for you?
7. In Chapter “Bring In The Love,” Shauna describes "hustling for her identity.” She notes, “The love I was looking for all along was never found in the hustle. You can’t prove it or earn it or compete for it. You can just make space for it, listen for it." Can you relate to hustling for your identity? What have you learned throughout this study about resting in God's grace and the identity He offers free of any "hustling" we could possibly do?
8. We’ve completed Present Over Perfect! What is one thing you want to do differently in your life after being on this journey?