SUNDAY SERMON   |   RECAP

Every Sunday, we'll update this section with a recap of the weekend's message, as well as some discussion questions for groups to use. As always, use them as little as much as you want. They're meant to be a helpful guide, not a rule book!

Each message will be uploaded every week by Monday morning here.


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TRUE GRIT: HIDDEN IDOLS HIDDEN PURPOSE
TRUE GRIT Part 4  |  PASTOR TAYLOR MURRAY  |  11.22.2020


KEY SCRIPTURES

Romans 12:9-13 - Don't be lazy but be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, persistent in prayer...


No one likes prolonged seasons of discomfort, pressure, pain. But it's those seasons that bring out the gold (and often the not-so-gold) in us. The Apostle Paul tells us to be "joyful in hope, patient in affliction..." Sometimes hope is tangible, and other times it seems impossible considering the continual nature of affliction and pressure in this season. Pastor Taylor likened it to a kids applesauce pouch that gets squeezed. Kids often consume many pouches, leaving a large amount still to be eaten. When they're ready for a new pouch, dad is saying "finish the one I gave you first." Maybe it's like this with our walks with God and our lives in this season. We're ready to be done - but God is saying he's still got more for us to learn here. 

PATIENT = to remain, stay under without resisting

AFFLICTION = prolonged pressure or discomfort


So, to be "patient in affliction" is to stay under the pressure when we feel it. When it intensifies, we feel it. When it hurts, we don't run - we stay under it.

The beautiful thing is, when we stay under it, things come out that needed to: hidden idols and hidden purpose

HIDDEN IDOLS: 

These are things that we didn't realize had our attention, affection, time, even our worship.

 > work

 > success

 > phones

 > routines

 > church as we were used to it
When we allow the hidden idols to be exposed, it makes room for the purposes in us that we didn't even know were there.

HIDDEN PURPOSE:
These are the things in us that God placed in us when he created us.

 > gifts, skills

 > new job opportunities

 > deeper relationship with God

 > heart of worship beyond Sundays

 > etc


The gift of this prolonged season of discomfort has been what it has exposed, things it's brought out of us, old hangups that needed to be dealt with, even new future possibilities. Let's allow the squeeze to bring out the idols - and the purposes - so that we can step into what God has next for us.


QUESTIONS:

1. What has been the best part about this COVID season? What's been the worst?

2. We've been squeezed in similar and unique ways. Where have you felt the squeeze / pressure the most?
3. In what ways have you resisted rather than asking God what he's trying to get you to learn?

4. What are the idols in your life? (ie phone, finances, success, routine, church, hobbies, depression, attitudes, etc)

5. How can you begin this week getting rid of the idols?

6. In this next season, what kind of hidden purposes might God want to reveal in / through you?



Have any questions or needs relating to your group? Let us know!

 





CORONAVIRUS UPDATES & IDEAS
Isn't it poetic, how when things start to find a rhythm, that everything changes? With the virus going around, and the government mandates along with it, we find ourselves in an odd position. But if we look at it how God does, we'll see this as an opportunity rather than a source of discouragement! While things are changing, let's pivot and continue to do what we do best: connecting people.

SO, HERE'S WHAT WE DO: WE KEEP MEETING, WE JUST SHIFT "HOW"

Many of your groups were stopped in their tracks - whether you've got material that relies on in-person gathering, or a large percentage of your group is older in age. So, we shift. Groups will be "launching" the week of October 11, and will all be found here: reallifechurch.com/lifegroups.


Here's what FALL 2020 Groups "look like" (and some best practices)

1. HAVE A PLAN(ISH)

Ultimately, you're in the drivers seat for your group. Decide with your group what works best for staying connected and communicate. The best thing we can do is communicate clearly.

2. LEAN-IN TO ONE ANOTHER

Some of you are really feeling this. You're discouraged, anxious and just unsure. That's OKAY! Others of you are ready to go for it to help others. Reach out to someone - whether here at the church or in your group. Take a moment to send a text, make a call, say a prayer. Let's lean in with the extra time we have to make people feel seen and loved.

3. UTILIZE TECHNOLOGY
Here's a few ideas for how to meet as a group digitally:
> ZOOM Meetings - This is a live video conferencing platform. Several groups have used this. Sign up for free here!

> Facebook Groups - This is a great way to stay connected throughout the day/week. Consider joining other groups and making a larger "online lifegroup" to send encouragement, etc.
> Sunday Watch Parties - I explain this in the next point.

4. GATHER AROUND WHAT'S ALREADY HAPPENING
Sunday mornings will be more critical than ever, with Church Online @ 10AM! Consider hosting a "Virtual Watch Party" with your LifeGroup and any other friends
(here's a short "how to" video)! This is a great way to have a small group during church. It allows you to have your own private chat back-and-forth with comments and more!

5. KEEP US UP-TO-DATE WITH NEEDS

We don't have the touch that you do. When you hear of all kinds of needs from people in or outside your group, first ask, "Can we meet this need within our circle?" If you can, great! If needs exceed what you're able to to do within your sphere of influence, we may be able to help - just reach out!


Questions?
For coaching or facilitation needs, email taylor@reallifechurch.com

For attendance, technical or CCB questions, email cathy@reallifechurch.com

FAQ'S (FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS)

Do I have to take attendance?
Yes. We ask that you record attendance every time. It only takes a moment, and will help us to better know how our groups are doing and measure the health of our congregation. We recommend tracking attendance after you meet.
*while in COVID, this is not necessary*


What if I cancel or reschedule a group one week?

Go to take attendance and select "Did not meet" - or just send us a note! If you're simply moving to a different night in the same week, take attendance and leave a note that it was a different night.


How to I take attendance?
Once you've downloaded the LEAD App, open the "Groups" tab. Select your group (you can also search for it). Once you've selected your group, you'll see several tabs (Attendance, Calendar, Members, etc). Select the "Attendance" tab. Then you will see the "event" you're trying to track attendance for. Select those who were there (you can also add in the notes any people who attendance who may not have signed up).

Worried about forgetting? Don't fret! You'll get an email following each time you meet, reminding you to track your attendance, even giving you a direct link to do it right there from your phone!

*See the video above for step-by-step instructions.


What if someone attending isn't in our database (i.e. a neighbor, someone who's never been on a Sunday)?

When taking attendance, add their name & info in the notes.


How do I download the LEAD App?

From your phone's app store, search "LEAD APP." Or, find the links here.

VIDEOS & HELP TOOLS

Below you'll find some helpful tools to help you get better as a LifeGroup Leader. From videos on how to use the LEAD App to tips on leading a group, we've got something that will help you, because we know that when you get better, we'll all get better!





Take Attendance with the LEAD App