Uncomfortable (S1) - Day 7

Week 1 of 5

INTRODUCTION
The following is a guide to help facilitate discussion. Feel free to add or subtract or change questions to fit the conversation, and pray for the Spirit to lead in all things.

OPEN
Can you remember a time and place where you felt deeply uncomfortable, out of place?  Where were you and how did it feel?

HEAD
Read John 12:25, Matthew 16:24, Luke 9:59-62 and 14:26, John 15:20, 2 Timothy 3:12, Luke 9:58, Galatians 2:20 together and share any wisdom, insights, or questions in response to the reading. 

Before diving into the texts, why do you think the Christian life is a call to discomfort rather than comfort?  And concerning the discomfort, do you think it’s speaking to not having needs met, or having what you need but maybe not all that you want, or something else?

The Christian life is full of paradox like John 12:25, to gain life you must lose your life. Obviously this doesn’t mean literal death, but what are some practical ways we let go of our love for our lives in this world?

In Matthew 16:24, the cross didn’t yet have the context of Jesus crucifixion and sacrifice; rather, it was a place thieves and those who had done wrong went to die.  How do you think the disciples received these words from Jesus at the time He spoke them?

The passages in Luke seem to paint the picture that family didn’t matter to Jesus.  What do you think Jesus was trying to communicate about family and how does one both honor their father and their mother (Deuteronomy 5:16) and live out Jesus words in Luke 14:26?

Have you ever felt persecuted as a Christian for your beliefs?  If so, how do you think that persecution compares to the challenges Christians in other parts of the world face?

To be able to say along with the apostle Paul, “It is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me,” means a daily, constant, surrendering.  What are some ways we can practice this surrendering in our day to day?

HEART
Why do you think seeking comfort in this life can be dangerous for a life of faith?

Can you be uncomfortable and at peace or joyful?  Explain.

Paul said that it is in our weakness that God’s power is made perfect (2 Corinthians 12:9). What does the idea of God’s power and presence being with you in the discomfort, mean to you and your ability to endure?

HANDS
Take some time to learn more about Christians that face persecution on a regular basis.  Look at this website (https://www.opendoorsusa.org/christian-persecution/world-watch-list/) and spend time praying for God’s presence and courage and peace to be with them, giving them the power and strength to continue in their faith come what may.

LIVING WORDS for YOUR WEEK
““Five different times the Jewish leaders gave me thirty-nine lashes. Three times I was beaten with rods. Once I was stoned. Three times I was shipwrecked. Once I spent a whole night and a day adrift at sea. I have traveled on many long journeys. I have faced danger from rivers and from robbers. I have faced danger from my own people, the Jews, as well as from the Gentiles. I have faced danger in the cities, in the deserts, and on the seas. And I have faced danger from men who claim to be believers but are not. I have worked hard and long, enduring many sleepless nights. I have been hungry and thirsty and have often gone without food. I have shivered in the cold, without enough clothing to keep me warm.”
‭‭2 Corinthians‬ ‭11‬:‭24‬-‭27‬, ‭NLT‬‬

“I once thought these things were valuable, but now I consider them worthless because of what Christ has done. Yes, everything else is worthless when compared with the infinite value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have discarded everything else, counting it all as garbage, so that I could gain Christ.”

‭‭Philippians‬ ‭3‬:‭7‬-‭8‬ ‭NLT‬‬

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