LIFE GROUP LEADER GUIDE
For the week of November 14, 2021
This guide is designed to give helpful hints in preparing & leading your group in discussion.
ONLINE FEEDBACK FORMS THIS WEEK
We’d like to have your group fill out Feedback Forms this week. Let your group know how important their honest feedback is for you as Leaders and Hosts.
Here’s how the online forms work:
- Everyone in your group should have received their own personal email with a link to their Feedback Form on Sunday of this week. (Look for “Tell us about your Life Group!” in the subject.)
- Each unique email link is designed for that specific person and isn’t meant to be shared.
- In the event that someone in your group can’t find the email, you may share the generic link listed here with them. northcoastchurch.com/feedback
- Please take the time in your Life Group to have everyone complete the form if they have not already done so on their own.
- It’s just a few questions and should take approximately two minutes to complete.
- We will be emailing you the results of your group’s feedback in the weeks following the end of the quarter.
DISCUSS PLANS FOR THE WINTER QUARTER & LAST MEETING
Find out from your group if they know their plans for being part of the group in the Winter. They can indicate their plans on the Feedback Forms. Also, let us know of any roster updates that you know of, or changes to your meeting day, time or location for the Winter Quarter when you submit your attendance.
PRAYER FOR NEW WINTER LIFE GROUP LEADERS & HOSTS
Take some time to pray for new Leaders and Hosts to launch new Life Groups in the Winter.
NO LIFE GROUPS OVER THANKSGIVING
Just a reminder that there will be no Life Groups held over Thanksgiving Week, from November 21-27.
- Last week of Fall Life Group Quarter: November 28 – December 4
- Winter Sign-Ups: January 8-16
- Winter Quarter: January 16 – March 19
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: lifegroups.northcoastchurch.com/how-to-post-attendance
Check out our Tips and Tutorials for Online Groups here: lifegroups.northcoastchurch.com/pro-tips/
Looking back at your notes from this week’s teaching, was there anything you heard for the first time or something that caught your attention, challenged or confused you?
1. A common fear many of us experience is F.O.M.O. (the fear of missing out on an event, opportunity or fun, etc.). Can you think of any examples of times you have experienced F.O.M.O.?
Examples can include a social gathering you saw afterward on social media, a work meeting you weren’t invited to, a television show or movie everyone is talking about that you haven’t seen, a shopping item everyone is buying that you don’t have, etc.
Additional Question: What’s the silliest thing you have felt F.O.M.O. over?
2. A great way to trust God with what’s in front of us is to remember what He has done in the past. Are there ways or times you’ve seen God show up in the past that can serve as a reminder of His faithfulness now and in the future?
Good opportunity to hear stories of God’s faithfulness in people’s lives. You may also ask this question toward the end of your discussion, after the Digging Deeper section.
1. This weekend’s message had a lot to do with how faith is a matter of what we choose to focus on. In this week’s study questions, we are going to dive into a passage that reinforces this idea. Read the sections of Matthew 6:22-33 below and answer the questions that follow.
Matthew 6:22-24 New International Version (NIV)
22 “The eye is the lamp of the body. If your eyes are healthy, your whole body will be full of light. 23 But if your eyes are unhealthy, your whole body will be full of darkness. If then the light within you is darkness, how great is that darkness! 24 “No one can serve two masters. Either you will hate the one and love the other, or you will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and money.
Jesus lays out that successfully serving two masters is simply impossible. In a very real sense, serving two masters often looks like us splitting our focus or trying to have things both God’s way and our way. When it comes to the areas below, what are some ways we can tend to have split focus?
- Relationships (family, friends, dating or marriage)
- Free time
- Family—I may not have time to spend with my family because I am working hard to support them financially, which is loving, too.
- Friends—I may have friends who are not a great influence on me, but I am loving them, like Jesus says to do.
- Dating—I may not be doing dating/boundaries the way God would want me to, but at least I am dating a Christian, and that’s what counts.
- Finances: It is hard to constantly be buying the next best thing for ourselves and be generous the way we are called to be.
- Free time: I may spend a lot of my free time doing things I like to do because they make me happy, but are there things I could be doing to bless others?
- Work: I may be pursuing an important opportunity that will help me provide for my family, even though it will mean sacrificing time, work/life balance and spiritual health.
- Why is it difficult to successfully serve God when our focus is split?
- Can you think of any practical ways you have been able to keep your focus on the light of God in your life as opposed to your own darkness?
- Chris talked about the importance of trusting faith over our feelings. What might it look like to choose God over feelings in these areas?
Can you think of a time when you’ve successfully trusted faith over your feelings in one of the areas above? How about a time you’ve trusted feelings over faith?
- What is the difference between the time you chose to trust faith and the time you trusted feelings? Why did you choose one over the other?
- Is there something that helps you consistently trust feelings over faith?
- What are the consequences of trusting feelings over faith?
- James 4:4-8– about being double-minded (split-focused between the world and God)
- Philippians 4:8– about the things we should set our focus on
Matthew 6:25-30 New International Version (NIV)
25 “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes? 26 Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? 27 Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life? 28 “And why do you worry about clothes? See how the flowers of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. 29 Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. 30 If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, will he not much more clothe you—you of little faith?
In addressing worry, Jesus makes a point to stop and draw attention to birds and flowers to give the disciples an important reminder about His nature and their value. Can you think of any ways that might help you remember Jesus’ care for you and your value to Him?
Optional take home challenge: Encourage everyone to keep a gratitude journal or list this week as we approach Thanksgiving as a way to remember the ways Jesus provides for and takes care of us.
We heard this weekend about how it is often easier to trust God with our eternities than with our day-to-day lives. Think of two or three areas of life you may feel a sense of uncertainty or concern about. Why is it sometimes easier to worry than to trust in those areas?
Note: For some people, this could potentially be a difficult or vulnerable question to answer, so you may want to be sensitive and not call on people to answer this one.
- What do you do when you realize you’re worrying about one of these areas?
- How has worrying impacted your life in the past?
Do you think it’s possible to worry and trust God at the same time?
- How can worry be rooted in a lack of faith?
- Is there ever a time where it’s appropriate to worry?
- Can you think of any examples where worry may be beneficial?
- What is the difference between wise caution and worry?
Additional Verses: on what we are to do when we worry
Matthew 6:31-33 New International Version (NIV)
31 So do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ 32 For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. 33 But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.
Jesus points out that children of God are to have a completely different view of worry and fear than the rest of the world. Instead, He tells us to seek after His kingdom and righteousness. How would you describe to a friend what it looks like to seek after those things?
- Is there one of these things that might seem more difficult for you to seek after?
- Can you think of a friend, mentor, or family member who seeks after these well? If so, what can you learn from them about how to do this?
One of the best ways to seek first God’s kingdom and righteousness is to focus on and remember His Word. Can you think of any practical ways that have helped you keep your focus on God’s Word? If so, explain.
- Is there any particular verse from Scripture that helps you deal with worry?
- Can you think of a specific situation where a verse or story from Scripture helped you keep your focus? What was the result?
- The Bible plays a central role in helping us follow Jesus well, but we have to engage with it for it to help. What do you see in the following verses that could help motivate someone to spend more time interacting with God’s Word?
Looking back on this week’s sermon and study, what’s most important for you to remember?
Great Holiday Serving Opportunities
Thanksgiving: Give a local family the chance to celebrate Thanksgiving by buying them a turkey or, better yet, an entire meal. We have partners in Fallbrook, Vista, Ramona & Poway.
Christmas: Adopt a family for Christmas via one of our partners: Fallbrook Food Pantry, North County Lifeline (Vista) or a North Coast family.