REFLECT

Because God doesn’t change, we know he’s good – all the time. But sometimes the circumstances of our lives are not good. Life can be really painful! When life gets messy, we need to redirect our focus to Jesus and what He’s doing because the messiest moments of our lives are some of God’s favorite spaces in which to create something absolutely beautiful. When we trust Jesus, we can face our present trials with worship and awe. Join us this Sunday as we remind ourselves of who Jesus is and learn together about trusting him in the midst of our most painful experiences.

REALIZE

1.  To the degree you give out will be the degree He pours in.

Leader Notes

  • All of life moves in cycles. At any given point in our journeys with Jesus, we’re at one of three places: we’re either still an unbeliever, having no faith in Jesus; or we’re totally on fire for the Lord; or we’re following Jesus but have grown lukewarm and maybe even apathetic. No matter where we find ourselves on this spectrum, we often find ourselves longing for a greater revelation of who God is.
  • Sometimes, the key to experiencing more of who God is, is giving of ourselves more. God gives more as we prove ourselves faithful stewards of what he’s already entrusted to us. This is not to say God is some kind of magic genie who shows himself to us only when we’re making sacrifices. But as we seek to know him by serving his people, he meets us there and begins to pour into us with more of who he is.

How is God calling you to start serving and pouring out?

2.  There is a unique blessing for those who read, hear and keep these words.

Revelation 1:3
Leader Notes

  • In the first chapter of Revelation, we can see that the churches of the Apostle John’s day were facing intense persecution. Everything was chaotic and crazy. Jesus’ provision to John in the midst of chaos was his Word.
  • When we read, hear and keep God’s Word, he blesses us in unique and specific ways. And the cool thing about following Jesus whole-heartedly is he loves to bless us, and we can let him do that any way he wants. You can let God, today, just bless you. Let God “order” for you. You can say to God, “I don’t care what you do with my life. Just bless me however you want.” He’s going to do just that because he loves to bless us.

What does it mean for you to read, hear and keep God’s words, and how might it bless you to do so?

3.  Jesus always has a Word for His servants.

Leader Notes

  • God is always speaking and communicating to us…even in the most spiritually dry seasons we go through, he has something to say to us and teach us.
  • Through relationships with others and the things we go through in life, God is speaking to us and teaching us more about how to walk with him, even if we aren’t having “lightning bolt” moments or hearing specific words from him. When we keep our eyes open and practice an awareness of how God is moving in our present circumstances, we will see what he wants to teach us.

How is Jesus revealing himself to you in your present circumstances?

4.  The time is near.

Revelation 1:1-3
Leader Notes

  • In this first section of Revelation, John says three different times that “the time is near,” or “the days are short.” What that means is simply that we are closer than ever to the second coming of Christ. And we as followers of Jesus should have an urgency to share the good news of Jesus with those we encounter.
  • If we lack fire or a sense of urgency about sharing the gospel with others, let’s confess that to one another and pray together about it. There is nothing we can’t endure in this life and grow in when we have the help of our family of faith.

What does it mean that the time is short, and how does that inspire you to redeem the days?