the older brother
ICE BREAKER (start here)
Share about a time when you didn’t want help and you didn’t want to ask for help, but you knew you needed it and finally asked.
intro (read aloud before the discussion)
Often our Christian journey is marked by feelings of inadequacy, not measuring up, “I need to do better”, guilt, and shame. We tend to think that the answer is to try harder. We tend to fix our eyes on ourselves. Is that the gospel?
SERMON DISCUSSION (Use as a guide for dialogue, let God lead, and read the verses aloud)
In your Christian journey, have you struggled with feeling that you don’t quite measure up? Did those feelings show up at the beginning of your journey with Jesus or at some point later on?
Where do you think those feelings come from, and what is your strategy for fixing or eliminating those feelings of not quite measuring up?
Read Matthew 11:25-26. Jesus prayed always. Jesus offered his whole life as a prayer, and because of Jesus, you measure up! Share an area in which you have failed (in prayer, worship, holiness, temptation, love, mission, etc.), and talk about how Jesus has made that area perfect for you.
Read Matthew 11:27. “The Father and the Son.” The Gospel message is that Jesus completed salvation for you by living a perfect human life in the presence of the Father. Why is this truth the only way to defeat the feeling of guilt or shame or not measuring up?
Read Matthew 11:28. Trying harder is not the answer to the burden of feeling like you don’t measure up. What is the answer? What one thing could you do practically in order to enter into the rest that Jesus is talking about?
MINISTRY TIME (Invite the Spirit of God to come – “Come Holy Spirit”)
Ministry time helps us get our eyes off of ourselves and onto Jesus. Share how you may be focused too much on you, and ask that by the power of the Spirit your focus would be shifted to Jesus.
SPIRITUAL FORMATION (This is a weekly practice as we seek to become more like Jesus)
Prayer has been the classic Christian discipline for daily fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith. This week, set aside five minutes a day, and simply think about how Jesus has measured up for you. Enjoy the rest that only the gospel brings.
Luke 13 | Psalm 125
Luke 14 | Psalm 126
Luke 15 | Psalm 127
Luke 16 | Psalm 128
Luke 17 | Psalm 129
Luke 18 | Psalm 130