It Didn't Start Here
Goals for this Week’s Study:
Reflect on the Prayer from last week. Share any stories from opportunities that God may have given to share the Good News or your story to someone.
Review Sunday Morning’s Message.
Help group members (especially new members) get to know one another.
Open your group with prayer.
SHARE: Go around the group and have everyone share at least 3 good things from this past week! It could’ve been something like a meal was paid for, a front row parking spot at Kroger or Walmart (HALLELUJAH!), or a major breakthrough in some area of their lives.
- “Put on all of God’s armor so that you will be able to stand firm against all strategies of the devil. For we are not fighting against flesh-and-blood enemies, but against evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, against mighty powers in this dark world, and against evil spirits in the heavenly places. Therefore, put on every piece of God’s armor so you will be able to resist the enemy in the time of evil. Then after the battle you will still be standing firm. Stand your ground, putting on the belt of truth and the body armor of God’s righteousness. For shoes, put on the peace that comes from the Good News so that you will be fully prepared. In addition to all of these, hold up the shield of faith to stop the fiery arrows of the devil.” – Ephesians 6:11-16
- “Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a huge crowd of witnesses to the life of faith, let us strip off every weight that slows us down, especially the sin that so easily trips us up. And let us run with endurance the race God has set before us. We do this by keeping our eyes on Jesus, the champion who initiates and perfects our faith. Because of the joy awaiting him, he endured the cross, disregarding its shame. Now he is seated in the place of honor beside God’s throne.” – Hebrews 12:1-2
Sermon Notes: Take time to let everyone share some of the notes they took or anything that stood out to them from the message. Use this time to get everyone in your group talking (a good tip for this situation would be to go around the room and have everyone share one thing that stuck out to them from Jacob’s sermon)! Keep in mind, not everyone may feel comfortable talking yet, so try your best to help assist them in any way you can!
4 Types of Flaming Arrows:
Doubt - If you don't know what God says about it you will believe what the enemy says about it. (Satan will make you question if God really said it, like Eve in the Garden. Genesis 3:1)
Delay - You have to trust Gods timing because it's perfect. You don't have to understand it, you just have to believe He's enough.
Discouragement – Often leads to #4 when not dealt with in the right way.
Depression - Feeling hopeless, guilty, and shameful, thinking that the past defines the present.
When you think of Defense, what is the first thing that comes to mind?
Pastor Jacob talked about how the Armor of God is 95% defense and how “Defense Wins Championships”. Do you see an area of your life that you could improve your spiritual defense?
Do you find it hard at all to completely trust God? Why?
Out of the 4 arrows listed above, is there one that you see more common in your life than the others?
Jacob taught that the Roman soldiers took the skin of an animal and stretched it over the shield after soaking in water, so that it would extinguish the fire from the arrows. What are some things that you have now or that you can get in your life to help you withstand attacks from the enemy? (Your group, Close Friends, etc.)
READ Hebrews 12:1. Is there something in your life that may be slowing you down that may not necessarily be a sin?
What is ONE way your group can help you grow your faith this week? (Leaders remember these! Follow up throughout the week and next week)
Your faith makes visible the invisible God in your situation.
Faith is believing that you're not too far gone.
“Faith is taking the first step even when you don't see the whole staircase” -MLK
Jesus has paid for ALL sin, including yours!
Put on the FULL Armor of God, not just half!
Pray Over Your Group!
Leaders, Pray over each person SPECIFICALLY at the end of your group. Pray over the one thing that can help them grow their faith, and pray that God moves in a mighty way in their life this week.