LIFE GROUP LEADER GUIDE
For the week of January 12, 2020
This guide is designed to give helpful hints in preparing & leading your group in discussion.
This week we kick off our Winter Life Group Quarter. Your first meeting will include a potluck dinner and time to get acquainted, as well as time to discuss your Life Group Covenant. The study questions have been shortened this week to allow ample time to accomplish all of this.
To prepare for your first meeting, take some time to focus on the questions below and be prepared to share your answers with the group. Have a great meeting as you come together to connect, encourage one another to grow and see how God might work!
These notes are designed to be a resource as you lead your Life Group each week.
Looking for more guidance on your first meeting? You can find the “First Night Agenda” on how to make your first night great on the Leader Tools page of our website.
How We Measure our Success Week to Week: Hearing from everyone at every meeting and keeping God’s Word at the center.
Make sure you leave plenty of time to answer the question in the “Looking Ahead” section and spend time going over the Covenant with your group.
- Welcome and Eat – Potluck
- Group Sharing – Discussion Note: You can transition from Getting to Know You section to the Looking Ahead section.
- Study Questions Discussion (optional)
- Go over the Covenant – Use the last question in the Leader’s Guide to Study Questions below and transition into reviewing the Covenant.
- Try to get to the “Looking Ahead” section with 45 minutes left in your meeting so you have plenty of time to have everyone answer and go over the Covenant.
- Close in prayer
- Eat (more) dessert
Submit your group’s attendance online at northcoastchurch.com/attendance. If you’re not sure how to post attendance, you can check out the guide here. Don’t forget to let us know of any roster updates that you know of, or changes to your meeting day, time or location for the Fall quarter when you submit your attendance.
Discussion Note: Add these questions if you have new people in your group or a completely new group. If it hasn’t happened while eating dinner, have everyone in the group share how long they have been attending North Coast, if they have been in a Life Group before, and favorite hobby.
Have fun with this first question. Have everyone answer.
- Would you rather…
… sew all your clothes or grow your own food?
… win the lottery or live twice as long?
… eat pizza or ice cream as your only food for eternity?
… be reborn a 100 years in the past or in the future?
… work in a group or work alone?
- In 2020 which one of the following do you hope to experience the most and why?
Great question to have everyone answer. You may want to have them answer the two questions in the “Looking Ahead” section also and then transition into going over the Covenant.
- Something else (_______________)
- Looking back at your notes from this week’s teaching, was there anything you heard for the first time or that caught your attention, challenged or confused you?
You may not have time to go over this question.
Discussion Note: Because of the potluck, make sure you have enough time to spend on the “Looking Ahead” section. You may not have time to cover this question this week.
The great news we heard this weekend is it’s “never too late” to follow Jesus. Many people would have thought Saul, later to be named Paul, would never turn his life toward Jesus. As you read his incredible story of change in Acts 9:1-31, what catches your attention the most and why?
Which people and situations in Saul’s conversion story do you relate to the most?
Trusting that Saul had really changed was no small challenge in this story. We can all end up leaning toward one extreme or the other in regard to trusting too quickly or being too critical. Which one is your tendency?
How do the following verses help us know how to engage others in a hope-filled way and balance these two extremes?
Philippians 1:6 – being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.
Matthew 18:21-22 – 21 Then Peter came to Jesus and asked, “Lord, how many times shall I forgive my brother or sister who sins against me? Up to seven times?” 22 Jesus answered, “I tell you, not seven times, but seventy-seven times.
Proverbs 14:7-9 – 7 Stay away from a fool,
for you will not find knowledge on their lips.
8 The wisdom of the prudent is to give thought to their ways,
but the folly of fools is deception.
9 Fools mock at making amends for sin,
but goodwill is found among the upright.
One of the key reasons we meet in Life Groups every week is to gain the encouragement and support we each need to keep our focus on Jesus. Before you go over the Covenant in your group, take a moment and write down your responses to the questions below:
What are you looking forward to in your Life Group this quarter? Have everyone answer.
Is there anything specific in your life you want to put extra focus on this quarter to grow yourself spiritually?
Everyone may not have an answer here. You may want to give some options like, more regular reading their Bible, praying specifically for family and friends, better witness at work/ or with friends, etc.
Transition Statement to Covenant: “It’s great to hear what each of you have said about what you want out of your time in the group. One of the great benefits of being in a Life Group is the opportunity to have help from others as we seek to be strategic and intentional about our spiritual growth. The Life Group Covenant is designed to serve as intentional guidelines to help us make the most of our time together.”
Pass out Covenants and go over them with your group. You can download the Leaders Guide to the Life Group Covenant and the handouts.
Close in prayer: Next week the Study Questions will include an introduction to praying in a group so if you have a new group or a lot of new members, it’s suggested that you wait until week two to do any group prayer.
Eat dessert: Mingle with everyone.
Life Groups exist to promote spiritual maturity and personal growth through meaningful Christian relationships and the study of God’s Word (Hebrews 10:24-25). Here’s how it will happen:
Each week we’ll take time to share what is happening in our lives.
At first this sharing will include planned “sharing questions.” But after the first few weeks, it will become more informal and personal as we feel more comfortable.
Each week we’ll study a section from God’s Word that relates to the previous weekend’s sermon or an appropriate personal growth topic. Our goal is to learn how to live out our Christianity in everyday life.
Each week we’ll learn how to take care of one another as Christ commanded (John 15:9-13). This care can take many forms, such as prayer, encouragement, listening, challenging one another and meeting real needs.
Spiritual growth is fostered not only by what we gain through the support and input of others, but also through service to others. The role each of us fills is important to the health of the church and for us to be the hands and feet of Jesus to the community in which we live (Ephesians 4:11-16). Throughout the quarter, it is our hope that you can find and/or be affirmed in the ways God has designed you to serve and make a difference in God’s Kingdom.