Solitude & Simplicity

This week we are sharing a video from a friend of ours which was made for the Winterfest conference a few years ago.  Steve’s discussion of his practice of solitude is a good introduction to this week’s Life Group discussion on the twin disciplines of Solitude & Silence.  Our lives today are filled with such hectic, fast paced and NOISY days that it is instructive to take a queue from Jesus and purposefully set aside time to simply be still, be silent and be alone… to “unplug” from the noise of our lives for a time in order to “re-plug” into God.

This week’s practice encourages just that.  We encourage you this week to explore in your small group how Jesus sets this example for us, but also how the spiritual practices of Silence & Solitude can draw you nearer to God and how you might implement it into your daily and weekly walk with God.

Download the discussion guide:  8-13-17

Simplicity

Ironic isn’t it that in a world filled with technologies designed to save us time, energy and money we are the most in debt, tired and busy people on the planet?

Christians fall prey to the lures of our cluttered and overly complicated culture of excess just like the rest of the world and we stand in desperate need of recovering this spiritual practice… the practice of Simplicity.

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8-6-2017

Serving: Giving of Yourself

This week we are wrapping up our month-long emphasis on the discipline of Giving by turning our attention to the giving of perhaps our #1 most precious possession… ourselves.  We are never more like Jesus than when we give of our time and serve in the spirit of humility that He demonstrated for us.  There are often things which prevent us from giving ourselves fully to service.  This week we want to look at the example of Jesus as well as the story of judgment He left us with and explore what those things might be… and how we might overcome them in our lives to truly give of ourselves as Jesus did.

7-30-17 Leader Guide

Cleaning Out Our Barns

As we continue our focus on Giving as a spiritual discipline and particularly at how our attitudes towards wealth and material possessions shape us spiritually, this week we turn our attention to Jesus’ parable of the rich “barn-builder.”  When he accumulated more than his barns could store, his solution was simple: build a bigger barn.  Jesus’ response and his teaching here speaks volumes to today’s society and our over-indulgence of “stuff.”

This week in your groups we encourage you to discuss Jesus’ teaching here and how it out to shape our attitudes in the church today.  We are also leaving you a practice as a suggestion as to how you might implement these principles into your life today.  Check it out!

7-23-17 Leader Guide

Self-Examination (Examen)

This week’s practice is Examen, or self-examination, and involves contemplative reflection inward, asking ourselves how God has been a part of our life or how our decisions have been directed by God?

Phil Brookman, youth minister at the Memorial Road church of Christ, spoke to teens at the Winterfest Conference some years back and summarized well this spiritual exercise.

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Singing

This week as a part of our emphasis on Worship as a spiritual practice, we are going to focus on worshiping in SONG.  So, instead of talking about it, we are going to encourage everybody to come together Sunday evening for a time of worship in SONG!  We’ll be spending the evening singing praises to the Lord and Jared will share with us some devotional thoughts to help us center our praise around the throne of God.

In lieu of a ‘video introduction’ this week, let us share with you a selection of current and popular worship songs that you can take with you this week and use them to praise the Lord yourself!  We may be singing some of these Sunday!  Have a blessed Easter weekend!