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{October 1, 2017}

 

October 1 – 7, 2017

 

LOVE(MATH): Friends

By Meghan Hemenway

Our love math lesson for today is 1+1+1 >3. When talking about friendship there are those in which the sum is greater than their parts. The deep bonds we build in friendships can be life changing for not only ourselves and our friends, but for those around us.

This topic is easy for me to talk about. I have two great friends who immediately come to mind and have, like Proverbs 18:24 says, stuck closer to me than brothers . . . or sisters. Over the past five to six years we have built up an intimacy and a deep bond that has carried us through multiple miscarriages, the death of a parent, and the emotional pain of an estranged sibling. We started a friendship based on our shared life stage – stay-at-home moms of boys – and over time these two women have become my lifelines: my emergency contacts, the "other mothers" to my kids, my cheerleaders and my reality check. To have someone who knows you deeply and chooses to stand with you through life without the bonds of blood or marriage is humbling and breathtaking.

Our goals for friendship are sometimes fuzzy. It is easier for me to prioritize my marriage, my children, and my relationships with family above my time with my good friends. But even Jesus had besties. Jesus had an inner circle of Peter, James, and John. He gave them nicknames, he shared with them his glory and his deepest sadness. He modeled what it was like to reveal his true self to a few trusted people and what it looked like to be vulnerable and intentional in his friendships. He was passionate about being known, loving, and serving. Through his investment in these core friends and through teaching them about these passions they were all able to pour out to a larger group of people.

I could not have predicted that these friends would be the ones to become my inner circle. With our different backgrounds I didn’t expect to ever feel known by them. But by sharing deeply I think we each feel strengthened to pour out into our other relationships with spouses, friends, children, and our communities.

{sunday 10.1.17}

Read Ecclesiastes 4:7-12

Observe, Reflect, Apply: Who are your few close people? Do you have trouble naming them or do you find you are trying to include too many? Who will you invest in or will you pray that God would bring someone into your life that you can be a great friend to? How can you in these friendships be intentional, be about something, and call out the best in each other?

 

{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 catch Seth Davidson’s summary of Hebrews 8-10 in The Journey Continues.

{monday 10.2.17}

Read Hebrews 10:19-31

Observe, Reflect, Apply: The author of Hebrews is encouraging his original audience to continue to meet together and worship Jesus. He understood that they needed each other for encouragement. Have you ever tried to go at your faith alone? How did that work out for you?

{tuesday 10.3.17}

Read Hebrews 10:32-11:3

Observe, Reflect, Apply: The author of this letter defines faith. Write in your own words what faith is.

{wednesday 10.4.17}

Read Hebrews 11:4-16

Observe, Reflect, Apply: We are given a list of the heavy hitters from the old testament and told how great their faith was. We naturally look to others for motivation and encouragement in how we want to be. Who do you look up to? What about them inspires you?

{thursday 10.5.17}

Read Hebrews 11:17-28

Observe, Reflect, Apply: Faith can be weak and strong. We can be stagnant in our faith or we can be active with it. Where is your faith on the stagnant/weak to active/strong faith scale?

{friday 10.6.17}

Read Hebrews 11:29-40

Observe, Reflect, Apply: Take 5 minutes and write whatever comes to mind about the word “faith”. The only guidelines are…. 1) Do NOT stop writing for the entire 5 minutes. 2) Do NOT self-edit as you write. Share what you wrote with someone else.

{saturday 10.7.17}

Read Hebrews 12:1-13

Observe, Reflect, Apply: Being disciplined is a struggle. It’s difficult at that time but when we learn from it we enjoy the benefits later. What discipline have you faced that was painful at that time but later benefitted you? Explain.

 

{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.

  • How long you’ve been coming to Heartland and what do you like about Fall?
  • How’s your “inner circle” of friends?
  • Can you name a 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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