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Central Church Group Content
Week 1 – Freedom in Faith
- If you could be any animal in the world, what would it be and why?
- When you look back, what would be a/the pivotal marker in your journey and why?
Each day, we have the opportunity to really trust in God’s true, biblical promises and live in the freedom we have through our relationships with Jesus. We’ve been set free and the cage door is open, but too often we would rather have predictability instead of purpose, boredom instead of bravery, and the empty promise of our cage instead of the unlimited promise of freedom.
Lean into the Greatest Promise
Read 2 Peter 1:3-4 ~ “By his divine power, God has given us everything we need for living a godly life. We have received all of this by coming to know him, the one who called us to himself by means of his marvelous glory and excellence. And because of his glory and excellence, he has given us great and precious promises. These are the promises that enable you to share his divine nature and escape the world’s corruption caused by human desires.”
- We all have expectations. What are your expectations of God?
- According to these verses above, why has God given us promises?
- How does knowing God’s promises help you battle against our worldly desires?
Overcome Fear with Faith
God often leads his people into places where they feel overwhelmed. In every case, one promise was given by God himself: I will be with you. Not a promise of comfort, convenience or construction. He promised to walk with us through overwhelming scenarios.
Read Isaiah 41:10 ~ “Don’t be afraid, for I am with you. Don’t be discouraged, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you. I will hold you up with my victorious right hand.”
John Piper noted the prepositions that come from this passage about God’s presence with us:
“I am your God”… God is over you.
“I am with you” … God is by you.
“I will strengthen you” … God is in you.
“I will help you” … God is around you.
“I will hold you up” … God is underneath you.
- Do you believe ALL of these promises apply to you? Which one did you need to cling to right now?
- Where have you realized God was with you, even if you didn’t realize it at the time?
Go Deeper: Learn to know and remember God’s promises deep in your heart so you do not forget them when you are overwhelmed. Choose one to help you this week:
- Memorize Isaiah 41:10
- Write a letter to God summarizing and affirming God’s promises to you
- Allow friends to pray for you. Share with them what is overwhelming in your life right now.
Week 2- Freedom in Forgiveness
- Does your first or middle name have any familial significance? Were you named after another family member?
Read Romans 8:29-30 (ESV) ~ “For those whom [God] foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, in order that he might be the firstborn among many brothers. And those whom he predestined he also called, and those whom he called he also justified, and those whom he justified he also glorified.”
- Have you ever felt disqualified by God, or by your own self?
Foreknown – Predestined – Called – Justified – Glorified
Notice the pattern: Jesus first called Lazarus, and then he came out. That’s how salvation works. He calls and we stand. This distinction is important because a lot of people believe salvation is primarily about personal effort and willpower. Lazarus could not raise himself up. He was four days dead. We are spiritually dead in our sins, and only when Jesus calls to us, can we stand up and come out of whatever tomb sin has left us in.
- Who in your life knows you the best?
- What has happened or is happening in your life that makes you feel like God isn’t for you
- What is something you need from God?
Read Romans 8:1 NLT ~ “So now there is no condemnation for those who belong to Christ Jesus.”
- What does this verse say to you?
- What is one thing that makes you unique? (personality, a gift/talent, etc.)
- Is there something in your past you struggle letting go of?
Go Deeper: What is something in your past that you need to let go of? Write it on a piece paper. Then, tear it up. Surrender it to God and be free of it. Walk in freedom.
Week 3 – Freedom in Empowerment
- Who is your best friend and why?
- How do you manage your schedule and protect your priorities?
- What is an area of your life you are experiencing burnout?
Remember Help is Available
Read John 14:26 ~ “But when the Father sends the Advocate as my representative—that is, the Holy Spirit—he will teach you everything and will remind you of everything I have told you.”
- What does an Advocate do?
- What areas are you relying more on your own strength rather than asking for God’s strength and help?
Be Filled With the Spirit
Read John 7:37-38 ~ “…’Anyone who is thirsty may come to me! 38 Anyone who believes in me may come and drink! For the Scriptures declare, ‘Rivers of living water will flow from his heart.’”
You cannot live the life God has for you on your own steam. Your new life is powered by the grace, love, and ability that flow through the divine person of the Holy Spirit. You’ve got to remember to breathe, spiritually, and be filled by his Spirit. Otherwise, you’ll end up depleted and exhausted, defeated by your default tendency to go it alone.
- What ways are you being filled up with the water of life?
- Where do you need to extend grace in your life?
- Where do you need to practice love?
Go Deeper: If you are experiencing burnout or on the verge of it, invite someone into your journey to have some tough conversations, create a plan, and help you execute it. Create a priority list & place it somewhere you will see it multiple times a day to help you keep your priorities important. Utilize your calendar by placing all events (God, work, family time, date night, recreation, rest) in it. Create boundaries like implementing a “stop doing list.”
Week 4 – Freedom in in Blessing
Read 2 Corinthians 1:20 ~ For all of God’s promises have been fulfilled in Christ with a resounding “Yes!” And through Christ, our “Amen” (which means “Yes”) ascends to God for his glory.
- What is the nicest thing someone else has done for you?
- Describe what a promise means to you?
Read Ephesians 1:3-11 ~ “All praise to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly realms because we are united with Christ. Even before he made the world, God loved us and chose us in Christ to be holy and without fault in his eyes. God decided in advance to adopt us into his own family by bringing us to himself through Jesus Christ. This is what he wanted to do, and it gave him great pleasure. So we praise God for the glorious grace he has poured out on us who belong to his dear Son. He is so rich in kindness and grace that he purchased our freedom with the blood of his Son and forgave our sins. He has showered his kindness on us, along with all wisdom and understanding. God has now revealed to us his mysterious will regarding Christ—which is to fulfill his own good plan. And this is the plan: At the right time he will bring everything together under the authority of Christ—everything in heaven and on earth. Furthermore, because we are united with Christ, we have received an inheritance from God, for he chose us in advance, and he makes everything work out according to his plan.”
You are blessed with forgiveness, faith, and hope. No matter what happens, you can look to the future with trust. God has moved in your life remarkably, and he will continue to do so.”
Count Your Blessings – Unlock Your Blessing – Double Your Blessing
- Why do you think we should praise God for the blessings we receive?
- What’s the difference between an earthly blessing and a spiritual blessing?
- Have you ever trusted the world or someone else to provide for you more than God? How do these verses help you get that right?
- How does this give you hope to face whatever challenges are ahead of you?
Go Deeper: Write down your blessings and things you are thankful for in a journal/notebook or smartphone app. Each day, take a moment to consider how God has blessed you and thank him for it.
Consider a way you can be a part of someone else’s blessing. Think of ways you can serve someone in your family, neighborhood, and/or church. Put your ideas to action!