{June 11, 2017}

 

June 11 – 17, 2017

 

{Lay It Down}

By Adam Pontier

Over the last 18 years I’ve had many instances where I had to lay it down. Some were big and some were small. All of them were important. First time was when I chose to follow Jesus 18 years ago at the age of 17. This was a very dramatic and life-changing moment.

Watching the video of Patrick and Savannah sharing their story reminded me of these moments in my life. Matter of fact, I have shared many of these over the years and in this exact format (writing in the Journey), on stage with Dan, and as a guest speaker for the high school group here at Heartland.

I’ve shared moments in my past talking about being a punk rock atheist kid who made fun of church people who then came to know Jesus by reading the Bible and then proceeded to skip school for two weeks straight to read the entire Bible. I have shared more recent moments of struggle, like parenting young children and never feeling like there is enough time to do everything I should. It basically seems like, if it’s part of my history I have shared it at some point.

There is something very healing and liberating about sharing your past, your current struggles and your future worries. One particular moment where I chose to lay it down was deciding to share my stories and my struggles with other people at all.

Growing up I was taught not to share unflattering things about yourself with other people. I was told it was not polite or proper for people to share things like this. Obviously my tendency for rebellion still exists in some fashion, because I’ve chosen to do the exact opposite of what I was told. It is my relationship with Jesus that gives me courage to do so.

I realized that it is  important for someone struggling in life to hear from a friendly voice that they are not alone. More important than me trying to look better or cooler than I really am. I do get embarrassed and I do get worried about sharing too much about myself, but then I remember my identity is not based on what other people think of me. It’s based on who God made me to be. It’s based on him.
Where do you think God is asking you to lay it down?

“My purpose in this book is to point out the radical nature of the message of Jesus that has been sitting right under our religious noses all this time.” 
― Bruxy Cavey, The End of Religion: Encountering the Subversive Spirituality of Jesus

{sunday 6.11.17}

Read Romans 12:1-2

Observe, Reflect, Apply: Another way for describing sacrifice is “laying it down”. Sacrifice is part of what Dan spoke about today. In this passage it talks about being a living sacrifice. How can you not “conform to this world” as a living sacrifice (how are you “laying it down”)?

Miss the Sunday teaching? CLICK HERE to watch now!

 

{personal reflection and bible reading plan}

As you read the verses each day, make notes of questions you have about what you’re reading as well as answering the reflection questions below. Grab a friend or two to discuss what you are learning and what God is doing in your lives.

CLICK HERE to check out our latest video resource from Seth Davidson, The Journey Continues. It connects the dots from the past weeks’ readings to the current readings.

 

{monday 6.12.17}

Read 2 Corinthians 11:12-15

Observe, Reflect, Apply: There were people in Corinth who were sharing false teaching and undermining the power of Jesus’ life and the gospel story. Paul commits to following Jesus as he always has. Have you ever been confused about the message someone teaches? How can we, as listeners, be careful to measure the teaching we receive about Jesus? How can we solidify what we know of Jesus?

{tuesday 6.13.17}

Read 2 Corinthians 11:16-33

Observe, Reflect, Apply: Although it appears Paul is boasting of himself here, he is doing so to call out the mockery that the church in Corinth has become. He is willing to stake everything on his belief that Jesus is who he said he is, and that his story, shared boldly, will change everything. That even boasting of his weakness will show how powerful Jesus is. Have you experienced confusing teachings about Jesus? Or even beliefs about him that you know are inaccurate? What do you feel we are to do when this happens in our own lives?

{wednesday 6.14.17}

Read 2 Corinthians 12:1-13

Observe, Reflect, Apply: Paul talks here about his "thorn in the flesh" that challenges his abilities at every turn. Yet, he knows that Jesus is better seen in our lives when we are weak. When we need to rely on him. When have you been faced with your thorn in the flesh; your weakness? How have you (or how can you) allow Jesus to work with you in this space? If you have experienced Jesus in this way, find someone to share that with.

{thursday 6.15.17}

Read 2 Corinthians 12:14-13:4

Observe, Reflect, Apply: What would Jesus find if he came to stay in your house today? To engage physically in your daily existence? These are tough thoughts to ponder, but this is what Paul is challenging the Corinthians with.

{friday 6.16.17}

Read 2 Corinthians 13:5-13

Observe, Reflect, Apply: Paul continues with the theme of self examination in these passages. After reflecting on your own life, what do you feel God is nudging you to lay down or set aside so that he can get closer to you?

{saturday 6.17.17}

Read Galatians 1:1-12

Observe, Reflect, Apply: Paul now writes to the Galatians, and challenges them on listening to false teaching, and following a gospel message that is different from the words Jesus shared. Can you describe why you believe what you believe about Jesus? Have you ever considered that some of what you believe might not be the actual truth? Pray for God to increase your desire to know and understand Jesus. If you are ready to engage, invite a friend or two into a Journey study to explore the teachings of Jesus together.

{group discussion ideas}

We weren’t meant to experience the life of Jesus alone, so we encourage you to rally a few others to discuss what you are hearing, reading, and reflecting on together. Whether you are meeting as an Heartland group, talking with a few friends throughout the week, or bringing up spiritual conversations around your table at home, feel free to use some of these questions as conversation starters for The Journey.

  • Can you name an ‘takeaway’ or challenge from the Sunday message?
  • How has that been relevant, challenging, or meaningful to your life this week?
  • What have you observed about God, Jesus, yourself, others, or God’s plan for you from these readings?
  • Where do you need a breakthrough from God this week?
  • Who do you need to share what you’re learning about God with?

 

{extra journey resources}

CLICK HERE for more on how to use the observe-reflect-apply approach to getting the most out of your Bible reading.

The Bible App Get a free Bible for your phone, tablet, and computer. Experience the Bible anywhere, with options to highlight, save notes, and share what you are reading with others.

Bible Gateway Provides advanced Bible searching capabilities, which allow readers to find passages in scripture based on keywords, phrases, or scripture reference.

 

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© 2017 Heartland Community Church 12175 S. Strang Line Road, Olathe, KS 66062 (913) 341-5820.

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