EASTER: Hope Rises

TO START

Share how you chose to celebrate Easter. You might share three delightful blessings from the day. If Easter was hard for you, share why it was. What were you struggling with?

Is Easter a big holiday for your family or is it kind of a minor holiday? Do you celebrate Easter as a religious holiday or not so much? What Easter traditions do you have?
 

TO DISCUSS

Hope is “confidence that what will be is better than what has been.”

  • Does hope come easily to you? Or do you have to work at it? Why do you think that is?
  • What can we do to intentionally grow/strengthen our hope? Give practical examples, action items.

Flannery O’Connor writes in Mystery and Manners, ”Those without hope don't take long looks at anything, because they haven't the courage.”

  • What does that mean?
  • Have you ever avoided really taking a long look at some part of your life because of a lack of hope? Did you know it was a lack of hope in the moment or have you only realized that in hindsight?

What does Christ’s resurrection mean to you? Why is Christ rising from the dead a big deal?

On Sunday Justin said,

“My resurrected Lord teaches me to keep investing, because there’s hope for broken relationships. My resurrected Lord teaches me to keep trying, because there’s hope of the parts of me still bound by sin. My resurrected Lord teaches me to keep encouraging, because there’s hope for wounded children. My resurrected Lord teaches me to keep following him and trusting him, because there’s a time coming when I won’t be sinful or exhausted or sick or weak or dying anymore.”

  • What hard thing are you dealing with that requires hope?
  • Give an example of a time hope helped you get through something you couldn’t have endured without it.
     

TO READ

This week let’s read some delicious and delightful Heaven promises from Revelation 21:1-5 and Revelation 22:1-5.

  • What do we know about Heaven from these two descriptions?
  • What will definitely be in Heaven?
  • What will definitely NOT be in Heaven?
  • How does this picture of Heaven make you feel?
     

TO PRAY

This week, pray for the hopeless. Who needs hope and doesn’t have it? Pray for them. Pray, too, for those of us who should have unshakeable hope but sometimes don’t. Pray that our hope would be strengthened.

If you have group members going through very trying seasons, be sure to pray that they would persevere in hope.
 

TO SING

Want to sing together this week? People with hope are singing people. You might look up some favorite old school Heaven songs and have a sing-a-long.

If you’d rather learn some new songs, here are two that reinforce Sunday’s message: