Commonwealth Week 11

This series is all about how we can better live into spiritual empowerment made accessible to us, through Jesus. 

In our teaching this week in Commonwealth we discuss Sharing in the Commonwealth of God’s Spirit. We’re excited for you to listen along with us! If you want to talk through this message with a group of people join a community group- www.societychurch.com/groups. We will be discussing the questions listed below.

Community Group Discussion Guide:

STEP 1- Ice Breaker:

Help people to loosen up and share. It will be helpful if someone is new to go around and do names and have each person share about a question and share a bit about themselves.

(Group Leader Note: Use the Learning/Living Circle to guide your discussion and application of the content. Try your best to keep the “learning” and “living” focus balanced.)

Step 2- Learning- Observe, Reflect, Discuss

(Group Leader Note: Don’t feel the need to go through every scripture, point or question. Pick and choose what you feel will be most impactful for your group. If you are not sure where to start, just ask your group what stuck out to them about the message most and start with that.)

Read this scriptures together: John 15:1-27

1“I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener. 2He cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit, while every branch that does bear fruit he prunes a so that it will be even more fruitful. 3You are already clean because of the word I have spoken to you. 4 Remain in me, as I also remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me.

5“I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing. 6If you do not remain in me, you are like a branch that is thrown away and withers; such branches are picked up, thrown into the fire and burned. 7If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. 8This is to my Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples.

9“As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Now remain in my love. 10If you keep my commands, you will remain in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commands and remain in his love. 

12My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you. 13Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends. 14You are my friends if you do what I command. 15I no longer call you servants, because a servant does not know his master’s business. Instead, I have called you friends, for everything that I learned from my Father I have made known to you. 16You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you so that you might go and bear fruit—fruit that will last—and so that whatever you ask in my name the Father will give you. 17This is my command: Love each other.

 18“If the world hates you, keep in mind that it hated me first. 19If you belonged to the world, it would love you as its own. As it is, you do not belong to the world, but I have chosen you out of the world. That is why the world hates you. 20Remember what I told you: ‘A servant is not greater than his master.’ b If they persecuted me, they will persecute you also. If they obeyed my teaching, they will obey yours also. 21They will treat you this way because of my name, for they do not know the one who sent me. 22If I had not come and spoken to them, they would not be guilty of sin; but now they have no excuse for their sin. 23Whoever hates me hates my Father as well. 24If I had not done among them the works no one else did, they would not be guilty of sin. As it is, they have seen, and yet they have hated both me and my Father. 25But this is to fulfill what is written in their Law: ‘They hated me without reason.’ c

26“When the Advocate comes, whom I will send to you from the Father—the Spirit of truth who goes out from the Father—he will testify about me. 27And you also must testify, for you have been with me from the beginning.

Observation & Reflection Questions to Discuss:

  • Anything that jumps out to you as important, helpful or interesting in this scripture?
  • Are there any questions or curiosities you have about this portion of scripture that you would like to look into more?
  • What do you think it means to have an abiding faith? (v4-6)
  • How might a fruitful faith look amidst relationships with others? Can you think of a personal example? (Read Galatians 5:22-26 together)
  • What is the hard work that Jesus is describing in versus 18-27?
  • How might this description relate to the work you do? Is there a clear connection for you between your work and the mission of God (to bring about renewal in and for the world)?
  • What does it mean to develop our “gifted faith”? (Resources: Spiritual Gifts Survey, Strengths Finder, Personality Assessments)

STEP 3- Living- Planning, Accountability, Action

  • What is a prayer practice that has helped you to learn to develop a greater “abiding faith”?
  • How might you use the list of the “fruit of the Spirit” (from Galatians 5) to reflect on how to grow in your interpersonal relationships?
  • Do you feel comfortable connecting your work to what you believe the “mission of God” is for you?
  • What would be on a Commonwealth List for you? Make a list together of the signs of God’s grace in your life. This can be friendships, family, opportunities, resources, people, ect.
  • Is there some work you have been putting off that you need to tend to this week? What is it, when do you plan to get it done by?
  • Use the chart below to consider if there is there an area of life that seems out of balance right now? Which area is it? What might be a way to bring it back into balance?

STEP 4- Prayer And/Or Meditation:

Try one of these options, don’t be afraid to mix it up.

  • Share requests and pray for one another.
  • Inner, Other & Outer life prayer needs
  • Meditation with silence and stillness- A word or phrase to focus your group. A time of silence and stillness, set a timer for 5 minutes if you want.

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