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There are different levels of relationship.
1. Random co-worker
2. Occasional weather-conversation guy
4. The same favorite football team
5. Best friend
7. Willing to help you move
People that help you move are special people. They are willing to sacrifice their day, their rest, and even potential energy just to help you out. Sure, you offered them some pizza, but we all know that isn’t why they came out. They did it because they care about you. They are actively helping you accomplish something that you couldn’t possibly do alone.
In the middle of July, I asked some friends to help me move. People showed up, helped me move boxes, and generally made the day a breeze. However, the last object in my house stopped us in our tracks. It was a massive desk from the 1940s. (It’s actually the desk in the video above.) Two beefy guys tried tried to lift it — it hardly budged. Three guys gave it a try — it only moved a bit. Lastly, all five of us grabbed a section — the 600 pound monstrosity moved almost seamlessly. This is because we are better together.
We is better than me. When we encourage our students to surround themselves with authentic community, we are giving them the tools to dramatically improve their lives — both social and spiritual. Their faith will deepen and their commitment will develop.
Growth happens in groups. This is why we created the Circles curriculum for your ministry! We want to give you the tools to start small groups in your youth group. Feel free to download, adapt, and even just plain rip-off this content for your church. We believe that big stuff happens in small groups.
Here are three takeaways from the December Discussion Guides:
“Sometimes walking with God requires waiting — learn to wait well.”
Some of you are still waiting on packages you ordered on Black Friday.
Some of you are waiting on a breakthrough.
You are waiting on a certain situation to start making sense.
You are waiting on your relationships to improve.
You are waiting on a miracle, but God just seems still.
We will spend much of our life waiting. We know that the wait is hard. However, I can assure you of this, Christmas reminds us that God will come through. Pray while you wait. Learn while you wait. Worship while you wait.
God’s promises will come to pass. However, God’s promises do not have to follow your proposed timeline.
In the end, it’ll be worth the wait.
“Peace is found in a person — His name is Jesus.”
People experience a problem with peace due to a number of reasons — present circumstances, past mistakes, or future worries. I get it, there are hundreds of thoughts and situations trying to steal your peace. Hear me out though. There is no mistake you can make that will separate you from His grace. There is no problem that changes God’s promise. You can be strong despite the stress, because you know who controls the future. Sure you may be stressed by your surroundings, but your soul can be still knowing that God has it all under control.
Our Circles team truly wants to help you find peace. But, you must stop looking for peace in the wrong place.
Peace is not found in new possessions.
Peace is not found in a pill.
It is not found in some 20 step program.
Peace is found in one only place.
Peace is only found in a person – his name is Jesus. Peace is made possible through a personal relationship with Christ.
“Jesus does not always take away your pain, but He does promise that you’ll never go through it alone.”
While I was sitting in the hospital food court, I didn’t reflect on the normal “dealing with loss” scripture — I read the Christmas story. I wanted to be reminded of just how messy Jesus’ life started. I wanted to meditate on the miracle that God became flesh. The Christmas story illustrates a life-changing truth — Jesus does not always take away your pain, but He does promise that you’ll never go through it alone.
When the angel announced the birth of Jesus, he instructed Mary that “you will call his name Immanuel.” Immanuel translates to “God with us.” Most Bibles will even tell you this definition within the text and they don’t do that with many words. So that’s important, it illustrates the emphasis this name deserves.
Let me assure you of this — you are not alone. You will never be alone. God is with you. God came into this world as Jesus. He walked the same earth as us. He experienced loss, pain, hunger, acne, anger, and probably even traffic (Jerusalem always seemed to have a little congestion in the streets). We must remember that Jesus is with us. Whatever you are going through right now, I want you to know that God is with you. He is there for you. You do not have to face anything alone.
You can download the entire month’s discussion guide featuring four practical devotionals, small group questions, and scripture reading plans today! All you need to do is sign up for our Circles beta test. All that we ask is you help us make this curriculum the best product possible.
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