BEFORE YOU GATHER
- Familiarize yourself with this Group Study Guide.
- If you missed it, CLICK HERE to watch the weekend sermon.
- Spend some time in prayer before your group gathers.
- To prepare for discussion, CLICK HERE for a few facilitation tips.
- As a leader you always have the option to use some or all the questions and/or write your own questions.
Opening Prayer: (1-5 minutes)
In light of what God is saying through this week’s message, here’s some suggestions of how your group can invite God into your time together.
- Thank God for His selfless, unconditional love given to us in Jesus.
- Ask the Holy Spirit to open your hearts to receive more of God’s love.
- Ask God to open your eyes to see people who are hungry for love.
Quick Connection: (5 minutes)
When have you longed to be with someone you loved? Who was the person, and what was the circumstance?
Group Discussion: (30 minutes)
This week we will close the Anatomy of Love study by exploring applications of “love never fails” and “love abides” (1 Corinthians 13:8,13).
- Describe your response as you read this statement aloud: “God longs for me, (insert your name), with agape love.” What thoughts come to mind? What do you feel? How are you growing in receiving God’s agape love?
- Picture agape love as the Amazon River during rainy season, up to 24 miles wide, with a source that never runs dry. The Holy Spirit gives you access to this river (Romans 5:5). How are you making yourself available to the Spirit to receive agape love? Brainstorm ways to increase your availability and receiving this week.
- Describe the connection between receiving and giving agape love. How can you dip into the “river of agape love” to give to others?
- God’s love keeps going when ours stops. Share a recent situation in which your love ran short. If Jesus had physically walked into the situation with a huge vat of agape love to pour over you (and only you could see Him), would it have changed anything?
- Busyness blocks your receiving and giving of agape love. Describe a time when busyness almost blinded you to someone needing agape love. When you “saw” the person, was agape love released in you?
- Unforgiveness blocks your receiving and giving of agape love. Who is God calling you to forgive? What is your response to God’s call?
- Read 1 Corinthians 13 once more, out loud, slowly, savoring the agape love of Jesus.
CLOSING PRAYER (5-15 minutes):
In light of what God is saying through this week’s message, here’s some suggestions of what your group could talk about with God in prayer.
- Pray for release from busyness and unforgiveness
- Pray Ephesians 3:17-19 (greater dimensions of agape)
- Pray for the repairing of the East Bay fabric through your sharing of agape love.
CHALLENGE FOR THE WEEK:
- Wrap up memorizing 1 Corinthians 13.
- Boldly share agape with someone each day as the Spirit leads.
- Write a letter to Jesus, telling Him you are opening up to receive more of His agape love. Read it out loud to Jesus as a prayer.