Be sure to encourage your group to check out Daily Steps, Cornerstone's companion devotional guide -- a resource to help them spend one-on-one time with God throughout the week using daily readings from the Psalms.
Check out our sermon series resource page for additional information. If you need help with conducting your group meetings online, take a look at this guide.
In this section, your group will spend time catching up since your last meeting together.
Pastor Steve Ingold invited us to ask God to show, teach, and lead us in the direction He wants us to go. Using the powerful words of the Psalms, this week’s study guide challenges us to examine the concerns of our hearts that might be more exposed because of this season. No matter what we’re struggling with, God can show us where to walk, teach us how to follow, and help us to follow Him down the path that He has for us.
How’s your sense of direction? Do you tend to always know where you are? Does it take you a while to learn your way around a new place? Do you like to ask for directions or do you resist asking for directions?
Share a story about trying to find your way somewhere. What kinds of obstacles or hilarious encounters did you experience along the way?
Read Psalm 25:4-5 together.
- When was the last time you felt that you had a clear direction from God about something? How did you know it was His leading? Share what happened as a result.
In this section, your group will dive into the themes and Scripture passages from this week’s sermon, and learn more about their meanings and relevance for us today.
Read Psalm 143:5-8 together.
God, show me.
The Psalmist instructs us to remember God’s faithfulness and His love. Pastor Steve taught us to “not be consumed with what is happening right now, instead reflect on how God has come through in the past.”
- In what ways — both big and small — has God been faithful to you? How have you seen Him work in your life or the lives of others?
Hebrews 11 is a list of the ways that God was faithful to our Old Testament brothers and sisters. Then, Hebrews 12:1-2 encourages us to remember that, “A huge cloud of witnesses is all around us. So let us throw off everything that stands in our way. Let us throw off any sin that holds on to us so tightly. And let us keep on running the race marked out for us. Let us keep looking to Jesus. He is the one who started this journey of faith. And He is the one who completes the journey of faith.”
- Can you recognize or identify any doubts that you have about God’s faithfulness? What about fears you have of what might happen? Oftentimes naming our doubts and recognizing our fears will be enough to disarm them.
- How can the author of Hebrews and the stories of your fellow believers encourage you to “throw off everything that stands” in your way of trusting God?
God, Teach me.
Read Psalm Psalm 119:67-68.
Think about the kinds of teachers who greatly impacted your life, either for better or for worse. What makes a good teacher? What are the characteristics of a poor teacher?
The Bible helps us understand Jesus by revealing His identity in many ways. One revelation about Jesus’ identity is that He is a shepherd who lovingly teaches and guides His people. Another aspect of His identity is revealed through the way he taught His disciples. Consider the following verses.
Ezekiel 34:11-16 — God talking through His prophet saying, “I myself will be the shepherd of my sheep, and I myself will make them lie down, declares the Lord God. I will seek the lost, and I will bring back the strayed, and I will bind up the injured, and I will strengthen the weak, and the fat and the strong I will destroy. I will feed them in justice.”
Isaiah 40:11 — He tends his flock like a shepherd: He gathers the lambs in his arms and carries them close to his heart; he gently leads those that have young.
John 3:1-2 says, “There was a Pharisee named Nicodemus. He was one of the Jewish rulers. He came to Jesus at night and said, “Rabbi, we know that you are a teacher who has come from God. We know that God is with you. If he weren’t, you couldn’t do the signs you are doing.”
John 13:13 says, “You call me ‘Teacher’ and ‘Lord.’ You are right. That is what I am.”
Matthew 7:28-29 says, “Jesus finished saying all these things. The crowds were amazed at his teaching. That’s because he taught like one who had authority. He did not speak like their teachers of the law.”
What do these verses tell us about the kind of shepherd and teacher that Jesus is?
Jesus is an instructor and a shepherd. A teacher who is compassionate and kind, and a shepherd who carries his injured sheep so that they can find safety and healing.
How has Jesus carried you in the past? What did you learn through that experience?
Pastor Steve taught us that being carried by Jesus does not make us passive participants (thinking about his analogy of carrying his son on his shoulders).
In what way might a boy participate in a hike while being carried on someone's shoulders?
In what way could you be active in your spiritual journey while being carried on Jesus' shoulders?
What are some examples from your own life of times when God allowed you to stray from the path that you know He wanted you on? Why do you think He allowed that to happen? What did you learn?
God, lead me.
Pastor Steve reminded us that God uses the obstacles in our way as tools to help us develop into his likeness.
Are you currently experiencing obstacles in your life? Maybe they were present before COVID-19, maybe they are the result of it. What are areas in your life that are causing you stress or tension?
Read 1 Corinthians 15:58
In what way does this verse speak to you? What do you think God is trying to teach you?
What might need to slow down in your life so that you can follow closely to God?
In this section, your group will discuss how to apply what you’ve learned from the Scripture passages to real life.
Pastor Steve ended with the encouragement that, even if you don’t know where God is leading, you can still focus on these things:
- On your path today, do nothing out of selfish ambition.
- On your path today, encourage someone else.
- On your path today, be kind to yourself, because you're always learning how to take the next step.
- On your path today, let His hope and joy empower you.
- On your path today, God says: “Ask me anything, and tell me everything. I am with you.”
Take a minute to reflect on what shape these things might take in your daily routine:
- Is there a place where you can lay down selfish ambition?
- Is there a person to whom you can offer encouragement?
- Is there an opportunity to show yourself grace?
- Is there a way to allow God’s hope and joy to permeate your mood?
- Are there things you want to ask or tell God?
On your own, consider writing down on a piece of paper or in a journal the tangible ways in which you can do these things. Then, as you go through each one, write down your reaction, or how your feelings have changed. How has God met you in these places?
TAKE THE NEXT STEP
Grow closer to Jesus each day and explore the Psalms.
Have you checked out Daily Steps?
Daily Steps is a weekly devotional message designed as a companion to this sermon study guide. You will be guided as you spend time with God through personal reflection, Scripture readings, and prayer prompts.
DAILY STEPS - PSALMS - WEEK 3
CF Beyond Sunday is LIVE this Monday!
Don't miss our LIVE stream on Monday night, May 4, at 7:30 pm! After each weekend sermon, our pastors and various church leaders, will sit down for a 15-20 minute discussion around the weekend's sermon.
Mark your calendar, set your alarm, join us on YouTube, and don’t forget to subscribe!
It's Never Too Late to Take Every Thought Captive — If you are struggling with anxiety or discouragement during this time of sheltering in place, you may find this two-part essay especially helpful. It was written by someone prone to anxiety herself, our own Community Team Study Guide Writer, Sara Goetz.
READ PART 2 OF THE ESSAY