LIFE GROUP LEADER GUIDE
For the week of February 16, 2020
This guide is designed to give helpful hints in preparing & leading your group in discussion.
These notes are designed to be a resource as you lead your Life Group each week.
MID-QUARTER TRAINING -Vista Campus Based Groups
Vista Campus Mid-Quarter Training for Leaders and Hosts: These sessions are designed to build on your leadership skills and provide valuable information and tips as you lead your group. Make sure you check the schedule and plan to attend the training for your Station in Life. Click on this link for more info, dates and to RSVP.
– Remember you don’t have to answer every question!
– Choose questions best suited to your group.
– Listen to the Audio Guide/Podcast for more discussion suggestions.
– Take prayer requests
– If you haven’t divided into male/female groups already, you may want to do so for the Taking It Home section and prayer.
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, or changes to your group details.
MAKE PLANS FOR YOUR SOCIAL & SERVICE PROJECT
Check our Community Service website for some options: northcoastcommunityservice.org You can also check out the Leader Tools page for social ideas. lifegroups.northcoastchurch.com/suggestions-for-socials/
Because of the passage in Acts we were studying, Chris spent a lot of time talking about the spiritual gift of speaking in tongues. The study this week expands the discussion to focus on all the spiritual gifts and the privilege and responsibility every believer has to use his or her gift(s) in service to God and others.
This week’s study is a great opportunity to help people find their niche. Oftentimes, once a person latches on to how they make a difference by using their gifts and abilities, it takes their sense of fulfillment and purpose in Christ to the next level.
Be sure to avoid letting someone in the group focus on one specific gift (such as tongues or healing) or someone who wants to spend a lot of time trying to define what all the various gifts are. The discussion is not about individual gifts, but on putting our gifts into action. People who want more on a particular gift or spiritual gifts in general can go to www.gotanswers.org.
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?
1. There can be a lot of confusion about spiritual gifts in churches today, especially with the gifts like tongues and healing. Has your understanding of spiritual gifts changed over time? If so, explain how.
Good question to have everyone answer.
What has been the biggest influence on your understanding of spiritual gifts?
2. When you hear that you have at least one spiritual gift and God wants you to use it to serve Him and others, what response does that elicit? (Check all that apply)
□ Excited to figure it out
□ Still confused
□ Humbled that God wants to use me
□ Regularly using my gift(s)
□ Disappointed in what my gift is
Note: Have each person who answers explain why they chose the responses they did.
On a scale of 1-10 (10 being high), how motivated are you right now to use your gift(s) and abilities to serve God and others?
- How has your motivation changed over the last 5 years?
- What has impacted your motivation level?
1. God has given all His followers unique gifts and abilities that He wants us to use in order to serve Him and others. What are one or two gifts or abilities you think you have?
Note: People may be reluctant to share what they see as their gifts and abilities for fear of seeming prideful or they may be afraid people will be internally disagreeing with them. This would be a good question to have people answer in pairs to get them talking and then share with the whole group.
- Why are we so reluctant to talk about our gifts and what we’re good at?
- How do we balance being honest about our gifts and boasting about them?
Read the following lists of spiritual gifts. Jot down the guidelines and insights you see in regard to using your gifts and abilities to benefit the kingdom.
Note: “Spiritual gifts are not toys to play with. They are tools to build with. And if they are not used in love, they become weapons to fight with, which is what happened in the Corinthian church.” Warren Wiersbe in The Bible Expository Commentary.
Romans 12:4-8 – For just as each of us has one body with many members, and these members do not all have the same function, 5 so in Christ we, though many, form one body, and each member belongs to all the others. 6 We have different gifts, according to the grace given to each of us. If your gift is prophesying, then prophesy in accordance with your faith; 7 if it is serving, then serve; if it is teaching, then teach; 8 if it is to encourage, then give encouragement; if it is giving, then give generously; if it is to lead, do it diligently; if it is to show mercy, do it cheerfully.
1 Peter 4:7-11 – The end of all things is near. Therefore be alert and of sober mind so that you may pray. 8 Above all, love each other deeply, because love covers over a multitude of sins. 9 Offer hospitality to one another without grumbling. 10 Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God’s grace in its various forms. 11 If anyone speaks, they should do so as one who speaks the very words of God. If anyone serves, they should do so with the strength God provides, so that in all things God may be praised through Jesus Christ. To him be the glory and the power for ever and ever. Amen.
Exodus 31:1-6 – Then the Lord said to Moses, 2 “See, I have chosen Bezalel son of Uri, the son of Hur, of the tribe of Judah, 3 and I have filled him with the Spirit of God, with wisdom, with understanding, with knowledge and with all kinds of skills— 4 to make artistic designs for work in gold, silver and bronze, 5 to cut and set stones, to work in wood, and to engage in all kinds of crafts. 6 Moreover, I have appointed Oholiab son of Ahisamak, of the tribe of Dan, to help him. Also I have given ability to all the skilled workers to make everything I have commanded you
Additional Question: Why do you think the listings of gifts in each passage are different?
The use of our God-given gifts and abilities are not limited to the church. Can you think of any ways you could use them in places other than our church (like your workplace, school or home) to serve others?
Note: If you’re struggling with this question, have someone in the group mention one of their gifts or abilities and then have the group brainstorm on how that person could use them in other places.
What stands out to you the most from these three passages?
2. The gifts and abilities God has given us come with the expectation that we will use them to play a role in God’s kingdom. Paul uses the analogy of the human body in 1 Corinthians 12:4-26 to describe what it looks like when we all play our part. As you read this passage, what are some of the things that catch your attention in regard to the various roles we play?
1 Corinthians 12:4-26 – There are different kinds of gifts, but the same Spirit distributes them. 5 There are different kinds of service, but the same Lord. 6 There are different kinds of working, but in all of them and in everyone it is the same God at work. 7 Now to each one the manifestation of the Spirit is given for the common good. 8 To one there is given through the Spirit a message of wisdom, to another a message of knowledge by means of the same Spirit, 9 to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healing by that one Spirit, 10 to another miraculous powers, to another prophecy, to another distinguishing between spirits, to another speaking in different kinds of tongues, and to still another the interpretation of tongues. 11 All these are the work of one and the same Spirit, and he distributes them to each one, just as he determines. 12 Just as a body, though one, has many parts, but all its many parts form one body, so it is with Christ. 13 For we were all baptized by one Spirit so as to form one body—whether Jews or Gentiles, slave or free—and we were all given the one Spirit to drink. 14 Even so the body is not made up of one part but of many. 15 Now if the foot should say, “Because I am not a hand, I do not belong to the body,” it would not for that reason stop being part of the body. 16 And if the ear should say, “Because I am not an eye, I do not belong to the body,” it would not for that reason stop being part of the body. 17 If the whole body were an eye, where would the sense of hearing be? If the whole body were an ear, where would the sense of smell be? 18 But in fact God has placed the parts in the body, every one of them, just as he wanted them to be. 19 If they were all one part, where would the body be? 20 As it is, there are many parts, but one body. 21 The eye cannot say to the hand, “I don’t need you!” And the head cannot say to the feet, “I don’t need you!” 22 On the contrary, those parts of the body that seem to be weaker are indispensable, 23 and the parts that we think are less honorable we treat with special honor. And the parts that are unpresentable are treated with special modesty, 24 while our presentable parts need no special treatment. But God has put the body together, giving greater honor to the parts that lacked it, 25 so that there should be no division in the body, but that its parts should have equal concern for each other. 26 If one part suffers, every part suffers with it; if one part is honored, every part rejoices with it.
When it comes to spiritual gifts, it’s easy to fall into gift projection or gift envy. Gift projection is where we project a gift or ability we have on others and expect them to be able to do what we do. Gift envy is where we desire a certain gift or ability so much that we attempt to get it, or we idolize those who have it. Have you ever struggled with either of these?
- If you did struggle, how did you handle it?
- Have you ever been the recipient of someone else’s gift projection. If so, what did that feel like?
Have you ever felt like some gifts are more important than others? If so, which ones?
Note: Some gifts have a great influence and impact more people, but all gifts are similar in importance. Just like the body, the importance of a gift is determined by the what’s needed. If you need to hike 5 miles, your feet are more important than your ears.
All Christians have been given gifts and abilities to serve on God’s team, yet not all Christians are playing their part. What hindrances can you think of that keep people from using their gifts and abilities to play their part?
- Over the course of your life, what has hindered you from using your gifts and abilities in your life?
- What have you found to be helpful in overcoming those hindrances?
- Why do you think people miss or pass up their ability to make a difference by using their gifts?
- Can you think of any examples of how the body of believers might be hindered when someone isn’t willing to utilize their spiritual gift(s) and abilities?
- Can you think of ways you’ve benefited from others using their gifts?
1. In addition to the one or two gifts/abilities you jotted down in Digging Deeper #1, are there any other gifts and strengths you believe God has given you? (Possible areas you might want to consider: your passions and interests, abilities, personality and experiences.)
How are you currently investing your gifts/abilities in building God’s kingdom?
Is there anything specific you sense God calling you to start doing now as a result of this weekend’s teaching and study?
Note: some people may be in a stressful period in their life and trying to think through how they should start serving could put them over the top (sometimes it is good medicine for the stressful life). We obviously need to be sensitive to this. But we also need to be careful of our hurried lives or stress becoming an excuse. There is no set amount of time anyone is supposed to spend playing their position, serving, etc. Each person and life situation is unique. The focus is rather on developing a mindset of ministry – being willing to serve others wherever you are (service to others is not optional for anyone), along with finding specific positions, roles, gifts or abilities God has uniquely designed you for to build up the church body and reach the world for Jesus.
The key question – What are you doing to impact the kingdom, have you found your unique position(s), and are you playing it?
2. One of the key ways to find out what your gifts and abilities are is to jump in and start serving. Below is just a sampling of the many ministries within North Coast Church where you could use your abilities. Are there any new service opportunities you need to consider (or reconsider) as a result of this week’s study?
□ Children’s Ministries (nursery – 5th grade)
□ Connections: Coffee, Greeters, Usher/Hosts, Welcome Center
□ Creative team
□ Midweek Admin team
□ Parking Ministry
□ Prayer team
□ Tablecloth/Laundry ministry
□ Tech team
□ Safety team
□ Scrip booth
Note: If you have people in your group who want to get involved in a ministry at our church, here are some steps they can take:
- Go to northcoastchurch.com/volunteer to begin the process
- Stop by your campus Welcome/Info booth this weekend
- Call 760-724-6700