Focusing on having a great family can actually cause my family to become my idol. Focusing on pursuing God’s mission in our lives will cause us to experience Jesus deeply and the result is a flourishing family. It is the result. Not the pursuit.
The pursuit of an amazing family puts pressure on your spouse and your kids. If we really get honest the root of this is pressure we put on ourselves. All this pressure can cause the thing you want so bad to fall completely apart.
Phil 3:10 [For my determined purpose is] that I may know Him [that I may progressively become more deeply and intimately acquainted with Him... (AMP)
Everybody is pursuing something and if you don’t get your primary pursuit right nothing else seems to work right.
What we believe has the power to determine how we behave but it doesn’t always do so. We believe what we believe but we lovewhat we lovemore than we believe what we believe. This is why Jesus came addressing the deeper issues of the heart.
Mark 12:30-31 “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’ 31 The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself. ’There is no commandment greater than these.” NIV
None of us have a sin problem! The deeper issue is a worship problem.
The root of idolatry is finding identity in something other than God.
Worship is not an event. It includes events, but it is all of life. Worship does not start and stop, like a church service. Worship is not reduced to music, but it includes music, because music is part of our life with God. Worship is not something only religious people do. All people worship something.
Worship is part of what it means to be human. Even the most nonreligious people are fervent worshipers. Worship is a lifestyle of glory and sacrifice. Something motivates each of us in all that we do. Worship is at the core of our existence. Our priorities and our actions reveal our sacrifice. We sacrifice (worship) on behalf of that which we most glory in.
Luther said that most of our worship is self-directed. We are our own favorite gods.
Compromising your integrity for the approval of another person is idolatry. If a relationship is your savior from misery of being single it is idolatry. So many things can discretely become what we sacrifice for and glory in and when we do this for fashion, sex, power, promotion, etc it all becomes idolatry. Just because you choose your master doesn’t mean you’re not a slave.
So many times we get what we want only to discover we still don’t want what we have. Our “want” is never satisfied when Jesus isn’t at the center of it all.
Ps 23:1, 6 The LORD is my shepherd, I shall not want… 6 Surely goodness and mercy will follow me all the days of my life…
When we get our pursuit right we no longer chase blessings. Blessings will then begin to chase us following us all the days of our lives.
We Bring GP2RL Action Point:
Use the influence God has given you to invite people to come experience Jesus next week for Easter.
DISCUSSION GUIDE FOR COMMUNITY GROUP LEADERS
LEADER’S NOTES: In this season we are addressing how being fully known and being fully loved awakens something healthy within us that makes us fully loving. Our households should be influenced and blessed by God’s love as our first and foremost priority.
THE POINT: God isn’t just wanting us to conquer emptiness. He desires to fill us with all the fullness of God so He can overflow from our lives into our world and this should start in our home.
Fully known. Fully loved FULLY LOVING FAMILY.
Name something you think of as fun and enjoyable that many others may not find fun and enjoyable.
How have the things you love changed over the years? Share a few things you loved when you were younger that you no longer pursue.
Maturity is when your love and concern for others begins to outrun your love and concern for yourself.
John 13:34-35 A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another. By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another. NIV
One thing the New Testament makes clear is that the Church is supposed to be known for its love. Jesus says our love for one another is the very thing that will attract the world.
As God’s family we are learning how we are fully known and fully loved. This awakens something healthy within us to help us be fully loving. Our families and our friends should be influenced and blessed by God’s love as our first priority.
Eph 3:19 to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled with all the fullness of God. ESV
God desires to fill us with all the fullness of God so He can overflow from our lives into our world.
Share three names of people from three different circles in your life (home, work, church) and tell us something you appreciate about each of them.
God doesn’t put people in our lives to help us accomplish our assignment. The people are the assignment.
Conclude by sharing how you plan to voice this appreciation for these three people this next week. Also share names of people you plan to invite to church for Easter and take the time to pray for those people by name.
We Bring GP2RL Action Point:
Use the influence God has given you to invite people to come experience Jesus next week.