Preparing for Next Week’s Message
This reading plan will get your heart and mind set for the next message on January 18, 2015:
- SUNDAY: Luke 5, Mark 2,
- MONDAY: 1 Timothy 1,
- TUESDAY: Ruth 1,
- WEDNESDAY: 2 Timothy 1,
- THURSDAY: John 4,
- FRIDAY: Matthew 17:1-13, Matthew 26:36-56,
- SATURDAY: Mark 5:21-43, Luke 22:39-46,
Reflecting on the Most Recent Sermon
Sermon Series: Empowered by His Presence Sermon Title: Empowered by Suffering and Pain
Delivered On: January 11, 2015
But he said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” ([bible]2 Corinthians 12:9[/bible])
Ask God to give you the wisdom to never seek to be powerful in yourself. Pray for courage to never see yourself as a powerless victim. Invite the Holy Spirit to fill you with the power you need each moment of each day.
My Power or God’s Power – Take time this week to watch yourself. When you feel a need for power, what is your first response? Do you look to yourself, or do you pray? Make a point of stopping to pray each time you need strength his week.
Small Group Discussion
Watch: “Introduction to Empowered” on the Empowered DVD
How have you seen people (yourself or others) seek to be powerful and self-assured when they should actually be looking to God for empowerment? What are some possible consequences of looking to ourselves to be powerful instead of relying on God?
How have you seen people (yourself or others) feeling powerless and out of control? What are some possible consequences when a person believes they are powerless and there is no hope for them to get out of their circumstances.
Watch: Session 1— "Experiencing God’s Presence in Suffering, Loss, and Pain” on the Empowered DVD.
Tell a story of a Christian you have watched go through a time of hardship, suffering, or loss and describe how God was with them and empowered them along the way.
Read: 2 Corinthians 11:23-28 and 2 Corinthians 12:7-10
The apostle Paul was being faithful in following Jesus, he was fulfilling God’s purpose and mission for his life. But, he still faced great hardship, loss, and pain. What was Paul’s attitude toward his sufferings and what can we learn from his example?
In the DVD, Hasan says, “I know that God was with me through the toughest time in my life.” How have you met God and been empowered by him as you have faced difficult times of pain and loss?
In the DVD, Hasan explains that he wants to protect his daughter from the pain of the world. But, he also realizes that he does not want to over-protect her because God will empower her and draw near to her in the struggles we all face walking through life. What are some of the rich spiritual lessons and experiences of God’s presence we can miss if we try to avoid all pain and struggles in life?
Share a lesson of empowerment through suffering that you have learned through your reading of section one of the book or the Bible passages provided for your reading. Tell about one of the characters (Job, Paul, Hannah, Joseph, Peter, or Jesus) and how their journey has impacted your life.
What are ways your small group members can help show the presence, love, and empowering presence of Jesus to each other in times of struggle, pain, and loss that other group members might face.
What is one specific way your group members can support, encourage, and minister the empowering presence of Jesus to another group member in the coming weeks?
What specific ways can you be praying for each other from today until the next time you meet?
For more small group resources visit KevinGHarney.com.
Discounted copies of Empowered by His Presence are available in the Shoreline Community Church Café.