Sermon Based Group Homework
For the message on February 14, 2021
Passage: Philippians 2:4-8; Colossians 3:13; Ephesians 2:6-8; 1 John 3:1
This Sunday, Daniel and Bonnie concluded our Breakthrough series by giving us three keys to finding a breakthrough in our relationships – Show empathy, Forgive quickly, and Offer grace easily.
Looking back at your notes from Sunday’s message, was there anything you heard for the first time, caught your attention, or challenged you?
GETTING TO KNOW YOU
Describe a healthy relationship in your life right now. What are the reasons that it is healthy?
LET’S GO DEEPER
1. When Jesus came into our world as a man, He experienced life like we do. Jesus understands us and empathizes with us. Understanding and even feeling what another person is going through is a key to healthy relationships. What can you learn from the following verses about how to empathize with others?
Philippians 2:2-4 (ESV)
2 complete my joy by being of the same mind, having the same love, being in full accord and of one mind. 3 Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves. 4 Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others.
1 Peter 3:8 (ESV)
8 Finally, all of you, have unity of mind, sympathy, brotherly love, a tender heart, and a humble mind.
James 2:15-17 (ESV)
15 If a brother or sister is poorly clothed and lacking in daily food, 16 and one of you says to them, “Go in peace, be warmed and filled,” without giving them the things needed for the body, what good is that? 17 So also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead.
When has someone’s empathy helped you through a struggle?
2. One of the major obstacles that destroys healthy relationships is unforgiveness and holding a grudge. When we forgive quickly, we keep our heart tender. When we stew over a comment, action, or attitude that irritated us, we run the danger of inviting bitterness into our heart. What reasons do the following verses provide for why we should forgive others?
James 1:19-20 (ESV)
19 Know this, my beloved brothers: let every person be quick to hear, slow to speak, slow to anger; 20 for the anger of man does not produce the righteousness of God.
Romans 12:19 (ESV)
19 Beloved, never avenge yourselves, but leave it to the wrath of God, for it is written, “Vengeance is mine, I will repay, says the Lord.”
Colossians 3:13 (ESV)
13 bearing with one another and, if one has a complaint against another, forgiving each other; as the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive.
Why is it hard for us to let go of grudges and forgive those who hurt or angered us? Can you think of a time when you had difficulty forgiving someone? What are the benefits to forgiving quickly?
3. Daniel and Bonnie concluded their message by challenging us to be kind and gracious to others with no strings attached. Do you consider yourself a grace giving person to everyone or just the people you like? What does Jesus say about extending grace in the passage below?
Luke 6:32-36 (ESV)
32 “If you love those who love you, what benefit is that to you? For even sinners love those who love them. 33 And if you do good to those who do good to you, what benefit is that to you? For even sinners do the same. 34 And if you lend to those from whom you expect to receive, what credit is that to you? Even sinners lend to sinners, to get back the same amount. 35 But love your enemies, and do good, and lend, expecting nothing in return, and your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High, for he is kind to the ungrateful and the evil. 36 Be merciful, even as your Father is merciful.
What are some ways you can show grace toward your “enemies” this week? What difference could it make in those relationships?
TAKE IT HOME
1. What is your biggest takeaway from this sermon and study?
2. Do you have any prayer requests for your group?