Launchpad Week 1 – Discussion Guide

Getting Started

Main Idea:
God’s desire is for the family to be first and to be a firm foundation.

Discussion Starter:
Mornings can be the most hectic part of the day for a family, with everyone stumbling over each other trying to get ready for the day. Share about one of these mornings when the scene in your home made you stop and laugh.

Introduction:
Over the next month, we will launch into an out of this world conversation on family. Through this journey families will be healed, relationships mended, and families will lift off to new levels in love, language, leadership, and legacy to ignite and transform the next generation for the Kingdom of God.


Encounter God

Primary Scripture: Deuteronomy 6:4-7

Discussion Questions:

1. Moses makes it clear that love for God is an all or nothing situation—no division or indecision. Discuss how this looks in a family setting.

2. Why does Moses say in verses 4 and 5 that we should love God with all our heart, soul and might?

3. Pastor Micah talked about God’s desire for love to lead the way. He said it was a forgiving love, a giving love, and a living love. Spend a little time discussing what each of these looks like to you.

4. Pastor Micah also told us the launch sequence for a healthy family that lasts and lifts off. The launch sequence is family comes first, next the family teaches how to love God, and finally the family teaches how to love others. Why do you feel it works best in this order?

Discovery Bible Method:
For deeper study, as an alternative to the questions above, read Deuteronomy 6 and use the Discovery Bible Method to explore the passage.


Embrace Others

Suggestion: Consider breaking the group into dyads or triads for this section.

Discuss how some people have been raised in great families, and others have come from families that were not as loving or no family at all. If the latter is the case, in what way(s) can a group or church become their family?


Engage the World Around Us

Engaging at Faith Promise: Are there people at your campus or in your group that need to belong to a family? Pray about how you can help fill that role.

Engaging in Community: Do you know any single parent families in your community? Find ways this week to demonstrate how they can find true family love at church. You might want to invite them to church or group with you.

Engaging the World: Hurting and lonely people are everywhere. Pray for your campus missionaries. Pray for them to have opportunities to be the family to those they minister to and let them know they have “family” supporting and praying for them as well.


Expand God’s Kingdom

Do you know someone that could benefit from this message? Direct them to sermon archives so they can watch this one. Also share what this message meant to you with someone at work, school, or a friend. You can also post quotes from this message to your social media accounts.


Leader’s Notes

2. Just as the Lord is one, you are one (heart, soul, and mind – parts of one whole).

3. Forgiving love – As Christ-followers we are forgiven and thus we should also forgive.

Giving love – as a parent give of yourself to your children. Your kids need your time more than your money to buy more stuff.

Living love – Personal pursuit and love for God through spending time in His word, worship and times of prayer.

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.

Like a Boss Week 4 – Discussion Guide

Getting Started

Main Idea:
If God is first in your life, then everything else can come into order.

Discussion Starter:
What was your favorite part of guest Pastor Morris’s message?

Introduction:
This week guest Pastor Robert Morris of Gateway Church preached on the Principle of First. He taught that the firstborn must be sacrificed or redeemed, the first fruits must be offered, and the tithe must be first. Are you putting God first in your finances?


Encounter God

Primary Scripture: Exodus 13:1-16, Exodus 23:19

Discussion Questions:

1. Read verses 1-2 Exodus 13. Discuss what it means to sanctify or consecrate. What are some things that you consider sacred or “set apart” in your life? What items in your schedule or your bank account are “untouchable”?

2. What do you think about the phrase “it belongs to Me”? Do you consider what you have to be yours or God’s?

3. Keeping Exodus 13:2 in mind, read Exodus 23:19. Pastor Morris spoke about the difference in “giving” vs. “bringing” to the Lord. What is the difference? Discuss how our ideas of who is the owner and who is in control affect whether we think we are “giving” or “bringing” our offering to God.

4. Read Exodus 13:3-16. Have you ever asked, “Why should we tithe?” or “Why should we give?” If you have children, have they asked you that question? Looking at verses 14-15, how should we respond to those questions?

Discovery Bible Method:
For deeper study, as an alternative to the questions above, read Exodus 13:1-16 and use the Discovery Bible Method to explore the passage.


Embrace Others

Suggestion: Consider breaking the group into dyads or triads for this section.

Take question 4 a step further. Have each person answer the question “Why do we give?” as if he/she is explaining it to a child. Include details of what God has given you and how He rescued you.


Engage the World Around Us

Engaging at Faith Promise: Get in on generosity! You can give at https://faithpromise.org/give. If you are interested in how your financial gifts are used to serve our community and the world, you can view the Faith Promise financial statement.

Engaging in Community: As the weather gets warmer there are more outside chores to do. Do you have a neighbor who needs help with yard work? What about your local school–could they use help spreading mulch?

Engaging the World: Choose a missionary family from our Faith Promise Missions Magazine and pray for them this week.


Expand God’s Kingdom

Do you know someone who could benefit from hearing these messages about how to manage finances? Share link to the sermons online: https://faithpromise.org/series/like-a-boss, or search for “Faith Promise” in your favorite podcast app.


Leader’s Notes

1. Sanctify means to “set apart.” Draw attention to the fact that we all have time, money, relationships, or things in our lives that we “set apart” and consider non-negotiable. For some people it may be watching a specific TV show, for others it may be a bank account they put money into setting it apart for a specific purpose. Guide the discussion to the who or the why things are set apart. Are we setting things apart for God? For ourselves? For other people or things in our lives?

3. We “bring” what belongs to God and offer it back to Him. “Giving” indicates that we believe we are the owners. As Pastor Morris put it, “You can’t give what doesn’t belong to you.”

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.

 

Like a Boss Week 3 – Discussion Guide

Getting Started

Main Idea:
It’s not about what you are given, but what you do with what you are given.

Discussion Starter:
What would you do if you were given a million dollars—no strings attached?

Introduction:
This weekend, we continued to look at how Promisors can live like a boss, move into the corner office of contentment, and take charge of our finances. In the sermon, we learned that in God’s Kingdom, it is not about who gives the most money, but who gives the most of their heart. At Faith Promise, we give generously. We were challenged to consider our next step in generosity—to trust God and either begin tithing, if you haven’t already, or for those who do give generously, prayerfully consider and plan for giving at Heart for the Harvest this year. Pastor asked if we are putting God first in our finances—and in everything for that matter, because it is all His, no matter how big or how small. He is the owner; we are the managers. Christ-followers are each given unique moments, abilities and opportunities, and the critical issue is what we do with what we are given. The more we love the Giver, the more we respect His gifts! How are you managing and investing God’s gifts?


Encounter God

Primary Scripture: Matthew 25:14-30

Discussion Questions:
1. Who do you think is represented by the Master in this parable, and what is meant by the long time he was away?

2. The talent in this story is money entrusted to the servants. Each was given a different amount, according to the master’s understanding of their character and ability. What are believers entrusted with today? How are you managing what He has given you?

3. How did the attitudes of the servants entrusted with five and two talents compare with the attitude of the servant entrusted with one? Is your attitude more like the former or the latter? How will you ask God to enable, empower and equip you for a life of faithful and fruitful living?

4. What promises does God give to those who have “buried their talent” but who repent before the Master returns (see Joel 2:23-27).

5. Put Matthew 25:29 into your own words.

6. Are you expectant and ready for the coming of the Lord Jesus Christ, or are you putting it off until tomorrow?

7. God graciously commends us for what He accomplishes through us, and He calls us to share His purposes for the world. How have you experienced the joy of being used by God?

Discovery Bible Method:
For deeper study, as an alternative to the questions above, read Matthew 25:14-30 and use the Discovery Bible Method to explore the passage.


Embrace Others

Suggestion: Consider breaking the group into dyads or triads for this section.

This week, our focus was on how it is not a matter of what we are given but what we do with what we are given. In your dyads or triads, discuss how you are managing God’s gifts, how you are investing God’s gifts, and how you are receiving God’s rewards.


Engage the World Around Us

Engaging at Faith Promise:  Pray as a group to explore ways you can volunteer your time and talents to serve our church family. Consider how you can specifically bless our church leaders.

Engaging in Community:  This world is dying and hurting. More than ever it needs the healing message of forgiveness found only in the Gospel of God. Discuss how you as a group can identify a need in the community and move into faithful and fruitful service. Visit https://faithpromise.org/love-local to review several opportunities to serve together.

Engaging the World:  Pray as a group that the news of Jesus will penetrate even the darkest places in our world. Pray especially for our missionaries who risk it all to share the good news with which God has entrusted them! If you have not checked out our digital missions magazine, take a look at: https://s3-us-west-2.amazonaws.com/faithpromise.org/docs/mission-magazine-2017.pdf to see what FP is up to around the world and how you can pray specifically for our missionaries.


Expand God’s Kingdom

A woman once approached the great evangelist D. L. Moody to air a grievance. (Moody was an international evangelist of great renown in the 19th Century.) The woman said to him, “Mr. Moody, I don’t like the way you do evangelism!” “Well, ma’am, let me ask you, how do you do it?” Moody asked. She replied, “I don’t!” Moody responded, “Well, I like my way of doing it better than your way of not doing it!” Will you ask God for the boldness and strength to share the good news of Jesus Christ- to invest what God has entrusted to His children? This is our highest calling!


Leader’s Notes

1. The Master represents the Lord Jesus Christ, and the time represents the period between Jesus’ first and second coming.

2. Believers are entrusted with God’s truth- the Bible and the knowledge of Jesus Christ. We are to use the opportunities He gives, grow in the knowledge of Him, and give His treasure to the world.

3. The servants entrusted with five and two talents both were enthusiastic, diligent, eager to gain more and excited to share in their master’s happiness. The servant entrusted with one talent was self-centered, irresponsible, lazy and did not try; he made excuses and accused his master of wrongdoing, he feared/hated the master and disobeyed. He missed his opportunity to use what His master had given him. It’s not about what you are given but what what you do with what you are given!

4. He promises to repay us for the years the locusts have eaten. There is hope! As long as there is breath, there is hope (Ecclesiastes 9:3-5).

5. A life fully surrendered to God will be blessed; those who have no heart for the Kingdom of God will be punished.

6. Answers may vary.

7. Answers may vary.

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.

 

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Like a Boss Week 2 – Discussion Guide

Getting Started

Main Idea:
Living a life where you are the boss of your money so it is not the boss of you.

Discussion: How do you know when money has become the boss of someone?  Can you think of someone at work, in your life, your family, or your home who answers to money?

Introduction:  How many self-help books, courses, TV shows have you seen that want to help you find your way to financial freedom?  Why do you think we have such a hard time managing money as a society?  When you reflect on what culture says about money, goals, and priorities, it is no wonder that we are so confused on how to be good stewards of the gifts we are given.  So often, we look to the world for wisdom instead of the Bible.


Encounter God

Primary Scripture:  Acts 20:35, Haggai 1:5-6, Hebrews 13:5, and Hebrews 12:11, 1 Timothy 6:10, 2 Timothy 3:1-2

Discussion Questions:

When anything in life is an absolute requirement for your happiness and self-worth, it is essentially an ‘idol,’ something you are actually worshiping…” Timothy Keller, Counterfeit Gods.

1. In the sermon, Pastor references The Day America Told the Truth.  Specifically, what individuals said they would do for 10 million dollars. What are the warnings we read in the book of Timothy regarding money? What measures can we take to prevent the idolization of money?

2. One call of action Pastor gives in order to live Like a Boss is to put someone or something ahead of you this week financially.  How can we live like a boss by putting someone or something ahead of ourselves financially?

3. In Haggai, the prophet is commenting on how the people are never satisfied.  How similar is our world today?!

4. What are some other directives to prevent money from being your boss? With any habit  we must unlearn and realize that we are prioritizing somethings in the wrong order.

5. Hebrews 12:11 gives us a solid reminder of what the reward is when we perform the uncomfortable task of change and discipline ourselves to follow God’s commands.  What are some good disciplines in your life that help you keep the prioritization of God and money in the right order?

Discovery Bible Method:
For deeper study, as an alternative to the questions above, read Luke 15 and use the Discovery Bible Method to explore the passage.


Embrace Others

Suggestion: Consider breaking the group into dyads or triads for this section.

What ways can you prioritize what you have above what you want?

Talk about ways you are going to live like a boss this week.

In your groups take a minute and pray, asking God to open your eyes and give you discernment when you are struggling with moments of incorrect prioritization.  Ask for directions on how He wants you to move forward with placing others before yourself.


Engaging the world

How can we take what we have discussed here today and engage with our family at FP?

What about in the community?  Are there ways we can start to change the culture of “me first?”


Expanding God’s Kingdom

How can we practice being disciple makers that use our new habits to help create disciples who are called to serve others?


Leader’s Notes

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.

Like a Boss Week 1 – Discussion Guide

Getting Started

Main Idea:
Seeking God first in all you do brings genuine and lasting contentment.

Discussion Starter:
What is something you wanted very badly? When you finally got it, how did you feel? How long was it before you starting wanting something else very badly?

Introduction:
Comparison is in constant competition with contentment. It seems that there’s always someone who is just a little ahead of us. The purpose of this study is to understand how to move from living in competition to living a life of contentment. In almost every group we join, we feel pressured to become the best or be “king of the hill.” Most often that pressure comes from inside us. There’s still someone who has more or is better. We learn that having stuff never fills that emptiness inside, no matter how much we have or how valuable it is. However, contentment isn’t based on a situation or a thing; it’s based on a Person. If you have given control of your finances to God, you have come to realize that contentment is not only real and lasting, it gives us freedom. Like the apostle Paul (Philippians 4:11-13), we too can be content in whatever our circumstances.


Encounter God

Primary Scripture:  Matthew 6:24-34

Discussion Questions:
1. Jesus taught that we must choose our loyalty. Why must we do this?

2. As you have gone through stages of life (adolescence, young adulthood, etc.) how have you changed in your relationship with God? Is there a constant?

3. In considering life, food, clothes, shelter, how does Jesus explain what’s important? How do you set priorities in your life?

4. These verses add up to a guide to contentment. Can you summarize it?

Discovery Bible Method:
For deeper study, as an alternative to the questions above, read Matthew 6: 24-34 and use the Discovery Bible Method to explore the passage.


Embrace Others

Suggestion: Consider breaking the group into dyads or triads for this section.

How can we work with others in our group to experience contentment and let go of comparisons?


Engage the World Around Us

Engaging at Faith Promise: Is there an area of ministry you are wanting to try? Contact the person in charge and do a trial run.

Engaging in Community: Visit Faith Promise local missions page at https://faithpromise.org/love-local and find a ministry your group can do together.

Engaging the World: Visit Faith Promise missions page and look at upcoming mission trip opportunities. Are you interested in going on a mission trip? Can you support someone else financially so that they can go? Pray for the teams serving on these trips.


Expand God’s Kingdom

Who are you bringing to group or worship at Faith Promise next week? Pray as a group for opportunities to invite and share God’s love with those around you.


Leader’s Notes

1. Adoration of one feeds contempt for the other.
3. Jesus gives examples of nature and how God provides for animals and plants. Seek God’s way of doing things.
4. Give your attention to what God is doing right now. God will help you deal with whatever hard things come up when they come up.

ALL groups at Faith Promise should participate in ALL 4 characteristics of a disciple of Christ (encountering God, embracing others, engaging the world, and expanding God’s Kingdom). However, each individual group may be primarily focused on one of these “Es” for a season, or for the life of that particular group. Below is an explanation of each type of group.

– Encounter Groups: the primary focus of Encounter Groups is the deeper study and application of God’s Word.

– Embrace Groups: the primary focus of Embrace Groups is making friends and being friends on a deeper level.

– Engage Groups: the primary focus of Engage Groups is serving the people of our area through our local partners and through God-directed opportunities.

– Expand Groups: the primary focus of Expand Groups is the development and multiplication of disciple-makers to lead more groups at Faith Promise.

 

Easter 2018 – Discussion Guide

Getting Started

Main Idea:
God didn’t create faith to cower behind closed doors.

Discussion Starter:
Do you have a funny or strange talent?

Introduction:
How we respond to the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus is the most important question we can pursue.


Encounter God

Primary Scriptures: John 10:9-11, Matthew 18:12-14, Luke 10:38-42, Ephesians 2:8-10

Discussion Questions:
1. Discuss a time when you felt like an outcast. Discuss a time when you felt like you belonged.

2. Read Matthew 18:12-14. How has God pursued you?

3. Read Luke 10:38-42. Describe a time when something did not go the way you had hoped even though you felt like you were “doing everything right.” Have you tried to build your own doorway to God with good deeds?

4. Read Ephesians 2:8-10. How can you find freedom in this scripture?

5. How have you responded to Jesus in the past? How do you encounter and respond to him daily?

Discovery Bible Method:
For deeper study, as an alternative to the questions above, pick a Gospel (Matthew 28:1-15, Mark 16:1-8, Luke 24:1-12, John 20:1-18) and use the Discovery Bible Method to explore the story of the first Easter morning.


Embrace Others

Suggestion: Consider breaking the group into dyads or triads for this section.

Read Luke 5:17-20. What obstacles can you remove for those in your life so they can make their way to Jesus?


Engage the World Around Us

Engaging at Faith Promise: At an FP service this week, reach out to someone you have never met, introduce yourself, and (without being intrusive) ask if they have a need you can help meet.

Engaging in Community: As you engage your community as the hands and feet of God, discuss how you can express the Gospel while you do it.

Engaging the World: Pray that the Gospel of Jesus will be brought to every corner of the world and seek God for how you can be a part of it.


Expand God’s Kingdom

Read James 5:19-20. How can you work together to pursue and bring back to God those you know have wandered from Him? How can you work together to help prevent your friends and family from wandering from God?


Leader’s Notes

ALL groups at Faith Promise should participate in ALL 4 characteristics of a disciple of Christ (encountering God, embracing others, engaging the world, and expanding God’s Kingdom). However, each individual group may be primarily focused on one of these “Es” for a season, or for the life of that particular group. Below is an explanation of each type of group.

– Encounter Groups: the primary focus of Encounter Groups is the deeper study and application of God’s Word.

– Embrace Groups: the primary focus of Embrace Groups is making friends and being friends on a deeper level.

– Engage Groups: the primary focus of Engage Groups is serving the people of our area through our local partners and through God-directed opportunities.

– Expand Groups: the primary focus of Expand Groups is the development and multiplication of disciple-makers to lead more groups at Faith Promise.