The mind is a powerful place; what you feed it can affect it in a powerful way.
What is your favorite thing to do when you have free time?
This week, we continued to explore Mind Monsters, which are emotions that have moved from under our beds to inside our heads. So many of us struggle with a complicated life—one filled with with difficult situations involving marriages, kids, parents, etc. But, we as Christ Followers can ENJOY life…how? By following the filling and accessing the power of the Holy Spirit, we can experience joy even in the midst of darkness. Jesus promises us joy that no one can take that away from us. Joy is our reminder that darkness is temporary.
Primary Scriptures: Philippians 4:8, Galatians 5:22-23
- Read Philippians 4:8. What we put into our minds determines what comes out in words and actions. Paul tells us in this verse what God wants us to dwell on in our minds. What harmful things can people dwell on today? Consider memorizing this verse and repeat it to yourself as you encounter things that are unwholesome this week.
- God calls us to dwell on things that are true, but Satan works by telling us lies. He is a liar! (John 8:44). In what ways has the enemy distracted you with worry? The next time he tries to gain control of your mind and corrupt it, how will you turn to the Holy Spirit and His truthful ways? See John 17:17; 1 John 5:6.
- We acknowledge that there are many things in our world that are not honorable, right, pure, lovely or of good repute, but we do not focus on them or allow them to control our lives. Right thinking is the result of daily meditation on the Word of God. We are “to put off our old self… and to be made new in the attitude of our minds” (Ephesians 4:17-24) What honorable, right, pure, lovely things will you dwell on this week? How might that play out in action?
- Read Galatians 5:22-23. These character traits were perfectly embodied in the character of our Lord Jesus. Discuss the difference between works and fruit. How do Christ Followers exhibit the fruit of the Spirit today? Which of these qualities do you want the Spirit to grow in you?
Discovery Bible Method:
For deeper study, as an alternative to the questions above, read Philippians 4:8 and use the Discovery Bible Method to explore how Christ followers are to think rightly in this world.
Suggestion: Consider breaking the group into dyads or triads for this section.
Getting to know you: Paul reminds us what is available when we plug-in and walk in the Spirit. In what ways have you been passively lead by your circumstances instead of by the power of the Spirit? At Faith Promise, we say, “Where the Spirit leads…we will follow!” Why don’t we follow Him? How will you prayerfully turn from your circumstances and turn to God?
Getting to know them: Discuss ways you can encourage each other this week with the truth that joy is simply a reminder that the light is coming back, that darkness is not forever—it’s just for a moment. When we follow the filling, we are able to block those Mind Monsters from coming in and taking up residence in our life! Pray for specific, dark circumstances group members may be experiencing. Pray we will be open to allow God to work by the power of His Spirit!
Getting to know Him: Challenge each other to memorize Philippians 4:8 this week. When faced with the darkness of this broken world, respond with the truth of this verse and dwell on “whatever is true, honorable, right, pure, lovely, of good repute, excellent and worthy of praise”!
Engage the World Around Us
Engaging at Faith Promise: Pastor Josh challenged active FP Core members to do their part this week and participate in the Charter Amendment vote. We need 75% of the Active Core to vote! In preparation for our future and continued growth, we need to heed this call. The Core of Faith Promise is being asked to vote on the amendment at a Church Conference that will be held at the Pellissippi Campus on Sunday, September 22, 2019, at 5:00 pm. If you are not an active Core member but are interested in learning more, please visit https://faithpromise.org/core.
Engaging in Community and the World: Next week Faith Promise goes BACK to the Movies! Those 1980’s movies we’ve seen and loved are back but with a spiritual twist. We can share this five week event with our family, friends, co-workers and neighbors. Who will you invite to this entertaining and spiritually grounding series? This is a good place to give others the opportunity to connect with God.
Expand God’s Kingdom
Mark Twain wrote, “What a wee little part of a person’s life are his acts and his words! His real life is led in his head, and is known to none but himself. All day long, the mill of his brain is grinding, and his thoughts, not those other things, are his history.” Our thought life composes a major part of who we really are. That means it is crucial for each of us to bring our thought life into submission to Jesus Christ by learning to think biblically about every aspect of life. We are to immerse our thought life in that which is “true, honorable, right, pure, lovely, of good repute, excellent and worthy of praise.” Our actions proceed from our thoughts. As Christ Followers, we are to let “your light shine before men in such a way that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven.” (Matthew 5:16) This world is full of darkness, but we as Christ-followers can share the light and the source of life… Jesus!!! With whom will you share the Good News of Jesus Christ this week? Pray for opportunities to be the light and to share the light!
- People can dwell on impure thoughts through television, magazines, internet, books, conversations, and movies. We are called to dwell on pure and wholesome material as described in this verse. The best place to start is with God’s Word and prayer. We can ask God to refocus our minds to what is good and pure, and by the power of the Holy Spirit, we can do this!
- Answers may vary. Discussion should include the truth that “greater is He who is in you than he who is in the world.” (1 John 4:4)
- Answers may vary. One great way Christians can put “honorable” thoughts into action is by sharing the Good News of Christ with this world.
- Works are things done by effort, labor, strain and toil. Fruit, on the other hand, are things that are beautifully and quietly developed in a Christ Follower as the Spirit works to transform and unfold a life that more and more resembles that of God’s own Son, Jesus. By submitting to the power of the Holy Spirit and joining our lives to Jesus (see John 15:4-5), Christ Followers will exhibit fruit.
ALL groups at Faith Promise should follow Jesus Christ and lead others to do the same. Below are the marks of a growing follower and disciple of Jesus.
– A follower of Jesus desires to encounter God through the deeper study and application of God’s Word.
– A follower of Jesus embraces people and values relationships on a deeper level so everyone can grow together.
– A follower of Jesus engages and serves the world around them and in their community, through local partners or God-directed opportunities.
– A follower of Jesus expands God’s Kingdom through development and multiplication of disciple-makers, possibly to lead more groups at Faith Promise.