Bad Plan (part 1): No Thanks, God

 

TO START

How about a round of “Never would I ever”? Have each group member write on an index card one job they would never ever want to do. Collect the cards, mix them up and read them aloud all the way through once. Then, have all group members try to guess which job goes with which person.

 

TO DISCUSS

This week we considered God’s anointing of Saul to become the first king of Israel. Though God was certain Saul was the man for the job, Saul wasn’t exactly. Retell the story together. How did Saul react to being chosen by God for this role?

Can you think of any other men or women in the Bible who bristle at or run away from God’s calling or command? Share.

Read together Exodus 4:10-14.

“Moses said to the Lord, “Pardon your servant, Lord. I have never been eloquent, neither in the past nor since you have spoken to your servant. I am slow of speech and tongue.”

The Lord said to him, “Who gave human beings their mouths? Who makes them deaf or mute? Who gives them sight or makes them blind? Is it not I, the Lord? Now go; I will help you speak and will teach you what to say.”

But Moses said, “Pardon your servant, Lord. Please send someone else.”

Then the Lord’s anger burned against Moses…”

Why does the Lord’s anger burn toward Moses? Why do you think it bothers God so much that Moses doesn’t want to do what God’s asking him to do?

Has God ever asked you to do something you didn’t feel capable of doing? Have you ever tried to get out of following Him as He’s commanded? Share. Consider that sometimes we do this with 1. opportunities to serve God and sometimes we do this with 2. the righteousness God commands.

What might God be calling you to do right now? If you have something, share with the group.

If you’re uncertain, how could you go about figuring it out? How do we discover/identify the areas into which God is calling us?

Ask the group if anyone has a “calling story”--a story about a time when God pushed them to do something outside their comfort zone.

  • How did they know they were being called?
  • How did they know what God wanted?
  • How did they respond?

The subtitle for this new sermon series is this: When life hands you lemons, sometimes it’s because you planted a lemon tree.

How does that make you feel? How would you react to a friend who addressed those words to you? Have you ever seen that play out in someone else’s life? Why might we be reluctant to embrace it as a reality in our own lives?

How do we know if we’re working a bad plan? What’s our job when the people around us are working a bad plan? How do we best help?

 

TO PRAY

As a group consider the prayer we shared on Sunday:

Heavenly Father,

If you have something for me to do, show me. If it’s important to you, make it important to me. Help me live bigger. Bigger than now, bigger than me.

Give me courage to embrace your calling.

I refuse to refuse.

  • Is this prayer hard for you to pray or no?
  • Have you prayed a prayer like it before?
  • Have you ever had a prayer like this answered in an uncomfortable/challenging way?

 

 

FOR FUN

We started off this week’s sermon with the whale video. Here’s a link in case some of your group members missed it: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XVVW8BferzQ

That’s it. No discussion questions related to it. We just didn’t want anyone to miss it. :)