When we gather as a group, these are some ways we ensure the best group discussion:
We make the circle safe by staying honest and transparent - leave the masks at the door.
We keep it inside the circle. Each person’s story is theirs alone to share.
We look to the Bible for wisdom and truth, and work together to let it shape how we see the world.
We don’t try to fix each other in front of each other or give unsolicited advice. We lovingly save hard conversations for private moments.
We respect each others’ time by starting and ending when we say we will.
We believe that in Jesus Christ, there is hope for everyone.
On Easter, Jesus flipped the script from death to life, and it changed everything. For Peter, it flipped from failure to redemption. In just a few short days, Peter went from a hot-headed, confident, and passionate follower of Jesus to a broken, humiliated man who had betrayed his now-dead best friend and leader. But Jesus didn’t let him stay that way for long before flipping his script.
Remember, the questions are not a checklist to be completed, or in the perfect order! They’re simply guardrails to help you have a natural discussion about what we learned on Sunday.
Connect with each other
Do you have a “Pinterest fail” story of your own, where you tried to recreate something on your own but spectacularly failed?
Liar, lunatic, or Lord
Jodi started her message talking about how Jesus left no room for us to see him just as a moral teacher or all-around good guy. He claimed to be the Son of God sent to save the world from sin and death. CS Lewis said someone like that could only be a Liar, a Lunatic, or the Lord.
What do you think of that idea? Is it new to you?
Why is it so tempting to try and accept only the teachings of Jesus, but not the resurrection of Jesus?
the implications of “Lord”
Sometimes it’s important to “turn the prism” and look at Jesus from a different angle - which is why CS Lewis’ idea of Liar, Lunatic, or Lord is so helpful.
If Jesus was a great moral teacher with great ideas about how to live, then we are free to take or leave anything he said as we please.
But if he was who he said he was, if he really defeated death, then the implications are massive - we have to hang on every word, accept exactly what he says is true about us, about God, and about the world He created.
And the reality is, most of the time Jesus ends up slotted into the “great teacher” position in our lives without us even realizing. So getting back to this idea helps call out the urgency in us again.
Connect with the Message
Jesus convinces Peter
Jodi told us about when Jesus initially convinces Peter that he is worth following, and how quickly Peter realized how sinful he was, how amazing Jesus was, and that He should listen to whatever Jesus said.
Depending on where you are at on your spiritual journey…
How did God initially convince you that He was worth trusting and following?
What are you waiting for God to do before you trust and follow Him?
know what you don’t believe
In a lot of ways, the second question is for ALL of us.
Following Jesus is not a one-time decision - it’s a choice of trajectory every day, hour, and moment. There are parts of our hearts and minds and wills that remain “unconverted”, still living for ourselves instead of fully surrendered to God.
So go ahead and press on this question! Use the all-too-familiar “no one’s perfect”, apply it to the fact that none of us is trusting or following Jesus completely, and ask everyone to consider what they’re waiting on to trust and follow Him that little bit more fully.
Also, don’t be concerned with WHAT the thing is too much. Sometimes God meets us exactly how we’re hoping he will - sometimes he doesn’t. Either way, like Mike encouraged us to do in his message about doubt, we ought to KNOW what we don’t believe - if we don’t, it’s probably just rebellion. And that won’t get us anywhere :)
Pride before a fall
We’ve all heard that pride comes before the fall, but Peter lives it out in a big way. His “I will never” promises are still ringing in his ears when he betrays Jesus and curses him just to convince others he wanted nothing to do with Jesus.
Why is this age-old story of “pride before the fall” so common to the human experience?
Has this played out in your own life? Has your own pride set you up for a big fall?
Jodi said that pride turns into “smug judgment of someone else’s mess”, while humility makes our heart break for broken people.
Do you sense this difference in your own heart from time to time?
How dangerous do you think this kind of judgment is for a Christ follower? How worried should we be about our own subtle or even internal judgments of others?
ALL about the heart
Judgment of actions is not wrong - actually, it’s a good thing.
I can judge that murder is wrong. It’s pretty simple to get that one right, actually. In fact, it’s BECAUSE we can and should judge actions that we create laws that protect people, learn to care for each other well, and can grow in the wisdom of God in order to live the best possible life in the world He created.
But we go wrong when we start judging people, not actions - when we place ourselves above others because WE could NEVER act like THEM…
There are 2 questions that can help you navigate your own judgment to make sure it’s helpful, not harmful.
1. Whose definition of good and evil are you using?
Is it really outside of what God has called good and right? Or is just outside your personal comfort zone?
Most every time, there isn’t a straightforward answer to this kind of question. The Bible is meant to be engaged with prayerfully, not read for quick answers. So we always have to be sure we aren’t confusing God’s wisdom with American ideals, Western culture, or the world’s prevalent view on whatever thing we are trying to understand.
2. What does your judgment move you toward?
God knew full well the state of the world at our hands - broken and beyond hope. But He sent Jesus INTO the mess - He didn’t leave us alone or abandon us.
When you see something broken, does it move you toward passionate prayer for someone’s healing or redemption? Does it move you toward the person in relationship, so you can be a part of the solution? Or does it move you toward an isolated spot, away from the mess lobbing “advice” from afar?
Wrecked by failure
When Peter was wrecked by his failure, he did something right - he owned it. He understood the gravity of what he had done and he immediately wept bitterly.
Have you ever been that broken over your sin? How was it different than being upset about getting caught or suffering the consequences?
Jodi said that all kinds of good things happen when we start with the words “I was wrong”. How have you seen that kind of repentant attitude change a conversation?
Have you been avoiding an “I was wrong” situation in your own life? What would owning it look like right now?
Wrecked by humiliation
We all need good friends to help point us back to Jesus when we fail or when things get hard - but the question is if we’ll actually stay in the group when we’re wrecked by humiliation like Peter was.
Why are we so likely to pull away from out closest friends when things get hard?
Do you have someone that you could trust with a humiliating moment? Are you that kind of person for somebody?
Wrecked by grace
After Peter failed, betrayed Jesus, and decided he was done and unusable by God, Jesus forgave him, reinstated him, and put him on mission. Peter was wrecked by grace, but not just the forgiveness of his sin. Grace became the power to live for God and be used by Him.
Jesus told Peter that the best way to live out his love for God was to care for and love God’s people. Then Peter used his story, his failure, and his gifts to do that the rest of his life. How might God be asking you to use your story, failures, and gifts to help others find and follow Jesus?
READ. PRAY. DO.
Mike said no matter what you believe about Jesus’ resurrection, it’s clear SOMETHING HAPPENED after Jesus’ death to flip the world upside down. So start reading about what happened after Jesus rose from the dead - Acts is the story of how the disciples moved from fear and doubt to faith and passion because of what they saw happen!
Check out this video overview of the book of Acts before you jump in!
Pray this prayer on your own, or use it to kickstart your own personal prayer time.
adapted from Psalm 51
Have mercy on me, O God, according to your unfailing love; according to your great compassion, blot out my failures. Wash away all my iniquity and cleanse me from my sin.
I know what I’ve done, my sin is always on my mind. And it haunts me, threatens me, shames me.
You desired faithfulness, and I rebelled. But You have been faithful to me in the midst of that rebellion. You died for my sin before I was even born, had a plan for my redemption before I could go astray. Create in me a pure heart, Father, and give me the joy of truly believing that I am your much loved child no matter what I’ve done.
Investigate some doubts
Everyone has doubts - they’re not wrong to have! Faith is fueled by doubts, because they push us toward the source of the answers. Own up to a doubt you have about God, and make a plan to start investigating it! Do some research. Ask a trusted friend to investigate with you. Pray through it.
In week 2 of Flip the Script mentioned a few really important resources that were a great place to start. Pick one and start investigating!