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.
The idea for this week is that we would get better at every relationship if we would start with God. Things don’t come together well if we never look at the owner’s manual. This week we're discussing how to build our foundation how God says to build it.
BREAKING THE ICE
- Where do you go to find answers when you don’t know something?
Our foundation is what we believe is most important about ourselves and about how the world works. Did you intentionally build and shape your foundation? How has your foundation changed from childhood to adulthood?
- (Optional) Read this quote as a lead-in to the next questions!
Max Lucado says, “Unhappiness on earth cultivates a hunger for heaven. By gracing us with a deep dissatisfaction, God holds our attention. The only tragedy, then, is to be satisfied prematurely...We are not happy here because we are not at home here. We are “like foreigners and strangers in this world” (1 Peter 2:11 NCV). Take a fish and place him on the beach. Watch his gills gasp and scales dry. Is he happy? No! How do you make him happy? Do you cover him with a mountain of cash? Do you get him a beach chair and sunglasses? Do you bring him Playfish magazine and martini? Do you wardrobe him in double-breasted fins and people-skinned shoes?
Of course not. Then how do you make him happy? You put him back in his element...He will never be happy on the beach simply because he was not made for the beach...you will know moments or even days of peace. But they simply do not compare with the happiness that lies ahead.”
The Lucado Inspirational Reader: Hope and Encouragement for Your Everyday Life
- World View
What are some foundations that the world tells us are trustworthy?
helping people process the question
As Christians we so often forget we are sent into this world, but we are not of it. In fact, 2 Corinthians 4:4 says, “The god of this age has blinded the minds of unbelievers, so that they cannot see the light of the gospel that displays the glory of Christ, who is the image of God.” Which means a lot of what we learn in our lives we need to test and make sure it is from God.
If your group struggles with examples of foundations that the world sets, Jake mentioned a couple on Sunday:
Accomplishment (shifts when we compare to others)
Happiness (shifts when circumstances go bad)
Goodness (shifts when we realize that God’s “bar” is perfection, and we aren’t as good as think)
- Storm comes for both houses
How has a storm in your life rocked not just your circumstances, but your very foundation? What big questions about God, the world, and yourself have you been forced to wrestle with?
- FOLLOW-UP QUESTION:
Which relationships suffer the most when someone’s foundations crack?
- FOLLOW-UP QUESTION:
Help People think about a few different areas
:: Their own broken foundations
:: Others’ broken foundations
:: Differing foundations (from person to person)
We all have shaky foundations in our life, and it hurts when they break. Since pain in life can’t always be prevented, how can we remind ourselves that pain doesn’t have to rule our lives? How do you do this personally?
- Dead and Alive
Romans 6:8-11 says, “8 Now if we died with Christ, we believe that we will also live with him.9 For we know that since Christ was raised from the dead, he cannot die again; death no longer has mastery over him.10 The death he died, he died to sin once for all; but the life he lives, he lives to God. 11 In the same way, count yourselves dead to sinbut alive to God in Christ Jesus.”
- What do you think of this verse? What do you think of the idea that we are DEAD without Jesus?
Being Dead to Sin means...
Because of what Jesus did on the cross, we donm’t have to be good enough to please God. He pleased God for us. But that doesn’t mean we just stop trying to be good. If your group struggles to understand what it means to stop trying to be “good” while still being good, reference this verse to help and discuss what it means. Our lives as Christians do not need to be focused on what we do wrong on a daily basis (we’re all guilty!). The focus of our lives is how we live and what we do now that we’re forgiven. Our job is to bring our troubles to God and trust him to transform us.
Do you think Jesus is a trustworthy foundation? How would the foundation of Jesus’s love force out the other things that you rely on?
READ. PRAY. DO.
There are 20 verses. Break down the chapter throughout the week and meditate/chew on a couple verses at a time.
Try this method of responding to what you read!
- Highlight ONE verse, phrase, or word that stands out
- Write ONE thought or question about what you read
- Share it with ONE other person
- You can use this prayer to kickstart your personal prayer time this week.
Father, Thank you for giving us a new way of living. Thank you for making us dead to sin and alive in Christ! I pray for help setting my foundations on solid ground, that I may not be shaken when the storm comes. Thank you for your strength and mercy!
- Schedule it in!
On your calendar, schedule a reminder with the verse from Romans Chapter 5 for your lunch break, your commute, at morning or night, or when you think you’ll need to hear it the most.