These days, I don’t really get report cards, so I have to settle for the satisfaction of that little 30-point diagnostic inspection diagram of my car from the mechanic shop. I like the assurance that my tires are properly inflated, and even if my brake pads are toast, it’s really good to know before I warp a rotor.
But what about our lives with God? Is there a report card or diagnostic diagram for that? In fact throughout Scripture there are a number of rich passages that can help us calibrate our lives with Christ, but Romans 12:9-21 is one of my personal favorites. And as we read it together while making space to listen to God’s Spirit, I believe it can guide us toward greater wholeness. And so even if you don’t like getting a report card, I invite you to hear these verses as a compelling call to a better kind of life filled with love, enthusiasm, harmony, and maybe some burning coals.
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SEE IT // BE IT
(WEEKLY COMMUNITY GROUP DISCUSSION GUIDE)
Title: Together For(med) Good // Scripture: Romans 12:1-8
ARRIVAL / SOCIAL TIME 15-20 minutes
Spend the first 15 minutes or so of your time together catching up and socializing with one another. Also, find time to catch up together on how the assignments from last week turned out.
SERMON REVIEW 5-10 minutes
This week in our series Together for Good, we focused on Romans 12: 9–21. God’s continual transformation in us affects our relationship with God, ourselves and one another, both friend and foe. It starts with genuine love. We spend the majority of our time surrounded by imitations of love, and they can confuse and undermine God’s purpose and plan to show us His genuine love and for us to model it. We bend our life to satisfy our own appetites, to gain approval from others and to reach ambitions. And we often miss the opportunity to be love and joy for others. Not only can we love genuinely, but we can be fervent in spirit, seeking to show hospitality and overcoming evil with good. The greater mark of God’s love in our life will radically redefine all of our relationships.
THE MAIN THOUGHT keep this in mind as you facilitate discussion.
God’s righteousness radically redefines our relationships.
SEE IT – Questions 10-15 minutes
Picture (What is the story saying?): What does it mean to be transformed by our relationship with God?
Mirror (Where am I in the story?): If you could take the temperature of your faith, what would it be? What has dampened your fire? Are there relationships with people or things in your life that God is calling you to repent of, remove, release or reorder? If someone were to follow you for a day, what would they say you serve?
Window (How does the story change how I see those around me?): How are your house, family, finances and heart open to serving the Lord through hospitality? Who is God asking you to invite into your home, family and heart?
BE IT – Practice Which of these areas is God speaking to you about this week?
Change UP – Exercise
God can use music to evoke an emotional response in us that sometimes can be difficult to come to on our own. Listen to the words of “Let Us Be Known” by Aaron Keyes. Feel free to sing along or just listen. Are there any other worship songs that call you to an emotional response?
Change IN – Group Activity
What thoughts, feelings or emotions rose up in you while you listened? Was it difficult to stay with the emotion? How do you believe that God would like you to respond with what you are hearing and feeling? Why do you believe this is important? Share with the group.
Change OUT – Life Application Assignment
There is not a place in which God does not want to bring full transformation to you. Do you believe that there is someone that is needing to receive your forgiveness? What do you think would change in you if you chose this step? What do you think your group would gain if you followed this call? Who do you need to invite to your table?
CLOSING PRAYER 5 minutes
Take a few minutes to gather any prayer requests and pray for each other to SEE IT and BE IT this week.