LIFE GROUP LEADER GUIDE
For the week of November 12, 2023
This guide is designed to give helpful hints in preparing & leading your group in discussion.
ONLINE FEEDBACK FORMS THIS WEEK Please have you group fill out their Feedback Forms this week if they haven’t already. Let your group know how important their honest feedback is for you as Leaders and Hosts. It’s just a few questions and should take approximately two minutes to complete.
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.
- 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.
Christmas Party Option – Though not required, feel free to do a Christmas Party with your group sometime in December. A white elephant gift exchange or Christmas games can be a fun way for an extra connection as you move into the Christmas season.
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 19-25.
- Last Week of Life Group is November 26– December 2
- Winter Sign-Ups: January 6-14
- Winter Quarter: January 14 – March 9
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/
Discussion and Connecting note – Make sure you’re not missing time to follow up and take prayer requests. It’s fine if half your time is doing that. Mixing this up from week to week, sometimes more on the questions, while other times dividing into smaller groups or men only / women only are good variations.
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?
As you ask this question, it may take you right into the Digging Deeper section. Feel free to go directly there. Also, you may decide to go directly into Digging Deeper #3.
1. We’ve all had dreams or desires for our lives that just didn’t come to pass. Can you think of any that, looking back now, you’re so glad didn’t happen? If so, explain.
A good warm up question. Everyone may not have an answer. Be ready to start the sharing. Examples could be that car you wanted to overspend on, but now you don’t have the car payment; that person you thought was exactly who you needed at one point in time, but ended up not being the right person at all, etc.
2. This week, we heard how Pilate knew the right thing to do but was afraid of the cost and unable to see the long-term benefit of making the right decision. What are some common hard or costly decisions we are faced with in life and in following Jesus?
See what your groups come up with. There are a variety of potential topics here and answers could be similar to what was asked above. Pilate was fearful of damaging his reputation and was not willing to make the sacrifice to do what was right. He was violating a call to justice and allowing false accusations to stand against Jesus, thinking it would keep his reputation intact.
You could possibly rephrase the question by asking what are some specific decisions that are hard to make requiring sacrifice and/or delayed gratification? Categories could be in relationships marriage, singleness, friendship, employers, co-workers, parenting, finances, work, leisure, etc.
Note about decision-making – The context of decision-making in Larry’s message is doing the right thing God is calling us to do. Here are some guidelines in understanding it.
What does the Bible say about it? – Whatever we do should never violate what the Bible tells us. Larry’s example of choosing to not move was based on Scripture calling him to love his wife as Christ loved the church – Ephesians 5:25
What does wise counsel say when Scripture isn’t clear? – Proverbs 15:22
What has God told you? – the answer should still not violate Scripture – Proverbs 3:5-6
1. As the person leading the Israelites out of captivity, there’s no doubt Moses had to make many hard decisions that required confidence and willingness to take a stand. As you read Exodus 3:11-4:17, what do you learn about Moses and identify with when it comes to making right decisions that aren’t easy?
Exodus 3:11-4:17 New International Version (NIV)
11 But Moses said to God, “Who am I that I should go to Pharaoh and bring the Israelites out of Egypt?”
12 And God said, “I will be with you. And this will be the sign to you that it is I who have sent you: When you have brought the people out of Egypt, you will worship God on this mountain.”
13 Moses said to God, “Suppose I go to the Israelites and say to them, ‘The God of your fathers has sent me to you,’ and they ask me, ‘What is his name?’ Then what shall I tell them?”
14 God said to Moses, “I am who I am. This is what you are to say to the Israelites: ‘I am has sent me to you.’”
15 God also said to Moses, “Say to the Israelites, ‘The Lord, the God of your fathers—the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac and the God of Jacob—has sent me to you.’
“This is my name forever,
the name you shall call me
from generation to generation.
16 “Go, assemble the elders of Israel and say to them, ‘The Lord, the God of your fathers—the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob—appeared to me and said: I have watched over you and have seen what has been done to you in Egypt. 17 And I have promised to bring you up out of your misery in Egypt into the land of the Canaanites, Hittites, Amorites, Perizzites, Hivites and Jebusites—a land flowing with milk and honey.’
18 “The elders of Israel will listen to you. Then you and the elders are to go to the king of Egypt and say to him, ‘The Lord, the God of the Hebrews, has met with us. Let us take a three-day journey into the wilderness to offer sacrifices to the Lord our God.’ 19 But I know that the king of Egypt will not let you go unless a mighty hand compels him. 20 So I will stretch out my hand and strike the Egyptians with all the wonders that I will perform among them. After that, he will let you go.
21 “And I will make the Egyptians favorably disposed toward this people, so that when you leave you will not go empty-handed. 22 Every woman is to ask her neighbor and any woman living in her house for articles of silver and gold and for clothing, which you will put on your sons and daughters. And so you will plunder the Egyptians.”
4 Moses answered, “What if they do not believe me or listen to me and say, ‘The Lord did not appear to you’?”
2 Then the Lord said to him, “What is that in your hand?”
“A staff,” he replied.
3 The Lord said, “Throw it on the ground.”
Moses threw it on the ground and it became a snake, and he ran from it. 4 Then the Lord said to him, “Reach out your hand and take it by the tail.” So Moses reached out and took hold of the snake and it turned back into a staff in his hand. 5 “This,” said the Lord, “is so that they may believe that the Lord, the God of their fathers—the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac and the God of Jacob—has appeared to you.”
6 Then the Lord said, “Put your hand inside your cloak.” So Moses put his hand into his cloak, and when he took it out, the skin was leprous—it had become as white as snow.
7 “Now put it back into your cloak,” he said. So Moses put his hand back into his cloak, and when he took it out, it was restored, like the rest of his flesh.
8 Then the Lord said, “If they do not believe you or pay attention to the first sign, they may believe the second. 9 But if they do not believe these two signs or listen to you, take some water from the Nile and pour it on the dry ground. The water you take from the river will become blood on the ground.”
10 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.”
11 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? 12 Now go; I will help you speak and will teach you what to say.”
13 But Moses said, “Pardon your servant, Lord. Please send someone else.”
14 Then the Lord’s anger burned against Moses and he said, “What about your brother, Aaron the Levite? I know he can speak well. He is already on his way to meet you, and he will be glad to see you. 15 You shall speak to him and put words in his mouth; I will help both of you speak and will teach you what to do. 16 He will speak to the people for you, and it will be as if he were your mouth and as if you were God to him. 17 But take this staff in your hand so you can perform the signs with it.”
Moses doubted he could do what God was calling him to do.
3:11 – who am I to do this?
3:13 – what if they ask me your name?
4:1 – what if they don’t believe me or that you appeared to me and told me this?
4:10 – I’m not good at communicating!
Additional Question: How do you identify with Moses’ doubt? When you deal with doubt or fear is that: you don’t think you can do it, wondering if God will come through, consequences too high or something else?
What do you notice about God’s response to Moses?
Good question to have everyone answer.
2. None of us want to be held back from making the right decision. But sometimes, it’s just not easy. What about the following verses encourages you to power through and make the right call?
Good question to have everyone answer.
2 Corinthians 4:16-18 New International Version (NIV)
16 Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. 17 For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. 18 So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.
Mark 8:34-36 New International Version (NIV)
34 Then he called the crowd to him along with his disciples and said: “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me. 35 For whoever wants to save their life will lose it, but whoever loses their life for me and for the gospel will save it. 36 What good is it for someone to gain the whole world, yet forfeit their soul?
Matthew 10:29-31 New International Version (NIV)
29 Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? Yet not one of them will fall to the ground outside your Father’s care. 30 And even the very hairs of your head are all numbered. 31 So don’t be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows.
3. One of the keys to following through on what God has clearly called us to do is understanding what’s holding us back or clouding our view of how God wants to continue to work in and through us. Looking back at this weekend’s message…
Discussion Option: This question may be a good one to divide up into smaller groups and close your group time with taking prayer requests.
…Which of the five things to keep in mind is most helpful for you to remember when making hard decisions?
…When you think about who and what you fear the most, we know the fear of God is what He desires. Which of the other three on the note sheet do you find yourself most tempted to fear? Can you think of any specific examples?
Looking back at this week’s teaching, what’s most important for you to remember?