Jacob: The dreamer and promise

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1. The dreamer and promise

(Genesis 28:12-15) He had a dream in which he saw a stairway resting on the earth, with its top reaching to heaven, and the angels of God were ascending and descending on it. (13) There above it stood the Lord, and he said: “I am the Lord, the God of your father Abraham and the God of Isaac. I will give you and your descendants the land on which you are lying. (14) Your descendants will be like the dust of the earth, and you will spread out to the west and to the east, to the north and to the south. All peoples on earth will be blessed through you and your offspring. (15) I am with you and will watch over you wherever you go, and I will bring you back to this land. I will not leave you until I have done what I have promised you.

2. The Dream

(Genesis 28:16-17) When Jacob awoke from his sleep, he thought, “Surely the Lord is in this place, and I was not aware of it.” (17)He was afraid and said, “How awesome is this place! This is none other than the house of God; this is the gate of heaven.”

(Matthew 6:9-13) “This, then, is how you should pray: ” ‘Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name, (10) your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. (11) Give us today our daily bread. (12) And forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors. (13)And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one.

(Matthew 28:19-20) Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, (20)and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”

Lifegroup Questions & Prayers

1.Are you ready for the promises of God?
2.Are you ready for the open doors from God.
3.Let’s pray and give thanks.

Who is God looking for?

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Genesis‬ ‭3:9‬ ‭NLT‬‬
“Then the Lord God called to the man, “Where are you?”

1. God is looking for the weak

1 Corinthians‬ ‭1:27‬ ‭GW‬‬
“But God chose what the world considers nonsense to put wise people to shame. God chose what the world considers weak to put what is strong to shame.”

2. When we know our weaknesses, God will give us strength.

‭‭2 Corinthians‬ ‭12:9-10‬ ‭NLT‬‬
“Each time he said, “My grace is all you need. My power works best in weakness.” So now I am glad to boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ can work through me. That’s why I take pleasure in my weaknesses, and in the insults, hardships, persecutions, and troubles that I suffer for Christ. For when I am weak, then I am strong.”

Philippians‬ ‭4:13‬ ‭NLT‬‬
“For I can do everything through Christ, who gives me strength.”

3. All we need to do is respond to Him

Isaiah‬ ‭40:31‬ ‭NLT‬‬
“But those who trust in the Lord will find new strength. They will soar high on wings like eagles. They will run and not grow weary. They will walk and not faint.”

Lifegroup discussion questions & prayer:

1. Which areas in your life do you feel you are weak?

2. Can you share a story of how Jesus helped you in a moment of weakness in your life? 

3. Let’s pray for each other in these areas! 

Blessing and Responsibility

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1 John 3:1 NIV
[1] See what great love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are! The reason the world does not know us is that it did not know him.

1 – Understand the tension

2 Corinthians 8:12-14 NLT
[12] Whatever you give is acceptable if you give it eagerly. And give according to what you have, not what you don’t have. [13] Of course, I don’t mean your giving should make life easy for others and hard for yourselves. I only mean that there should be some equality. [14] Right now you have plenty and can help those who are in need. Later, they will have plenty and can share with you when you need it. In this way, things will be equal.

2 – Invest your heart 

2 Corinthians 8:17, 23 NLT
[17] Titus welcomed our request that he visit you again. In fact, he himself was very eager to go and see you…. [23] If anyone asks about Titus, say that he is my partner who works with me to help you. And the brothers with him have been sent by the churches, and they bring honor to Christ.

3 – Live in that tension with a sustained energy for the long term 

2 Corinthians 8:20-22a MSG
[20-22a] We don’t want anyone suspecting us of taking one penny of this money for ourselves. We’re being as careful in our reputation with the public as in our reputation with God. That’s why we’re sending another trusted friend along. He’s proved his dependability many times over, and carries on as energetically as the day he started.

Lifegroup Questions and Prayer:

1 – What’s the relationship between blessing and responsibility?

2 – Why is it important we put our heart into the key partnerships we have in life?

3 – Are you committed to living with responsibility and blessing?

The Blessing Bounce

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(Luke 18:15-16) People were also bringing babies to Jesus for him to place his hands on them. When the disciples saw this, they rebuked them. (16) But Jesus called the children to him and said, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these.

1. God always starts the blessing bounce – that’s who he is! 

(Genesis 1:28) God blessed them and said to them, “Be fruitful and increase in number; fill the earth and subdue it. Rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky and over every living creature that moves on the ground.”

2. The Blessing bounced into Abraham 

(Genesis 12:1-3) he Lord had said to Abram, “Go from your country, your people and your father’s household to the land I will show you. (2) “I will make you into a great nation, and I will bless you; I will make your name great, and you will be a blessing. (3) I will bless those who bless you, and whoever curses you I will curse; and all peoples on earth will be blessed through you.”

3. The blessing bounces into believers 

(Galatians 3:9) So those who rely on faith are blessed along with Abraham, the man of faith.

(Proverbs 10:22 NLT) The blessing of the Lord makes a person rich, and he adds no sorrow with it.

Bounce the Blessing
A. Receive it by faith in Jesus’ Name
B. Bounce it into your wife and husband, kids
C. Bounce it into church
D. Bounce it into those who have wronged us

Lifegroup Questions and Prayer
1 – Can you receive Gods blessing?
2 – How can we practically bounce that blessing onto others?
3 – What about those who have hurt us?
Let’s pray!

Boomerang

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(Luke 6:37-39) “Do not judge, and you will not be judged. Do not condemn, and you will not be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven. (38) Give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.” (39) He also told them this parable: “Can the blind lead the blind? Will they not both fall into a pit?

1. Starts with forgiveness and release

2. Continues with giving and receiving in ever increasing circles

(Proverbs 11:24 MSG) The world of the generous gets larger and larger; the world of the stingy gets smaller and smaller,

3. It’s Coming Back But…

4. Be part of the Boomerang! Sow your seeds!

(Galatians 6:7) Do not be deceived: God cannot be mocked. A man reaps what he sows.

The complexity of life

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Proverbs 14:12 NLT
[12] There is a path before each person that seems right, but it ends in death.

The answers are in your pocket!

Psalm 119:105 NLT
[105] Your word is a lamp to guide my feet and a light for my path.

2 Timothy 3:16-17 Voice
[16] All of Scripture is God-breathed; in its inspired voice, we hear useful teaching, rebuke, correction, instruction, and training for a life that is right [17] so that God’s people may be up to the task ahead and have all they need to accomplish every good work.

Discover the delights along Gods path

Psalm 119:35 NIV
[35] Direct me in the path of your commands, for there I find delight.

Lifegroup Questions and Prayer:
1 – How does Gods word light our path?

2 – What habits can we develop to grow in wisdom?

3 – Are you building a relationship with a wise and loving God?

Let’s pray!

Always close

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Psalm 139:7-10 NLT
[7] I can never escape from your Spirit! I can never get away from your presence! [8] If I go up to heaven, you are there; if I go down to the grave, you are there. [9] If I ride the wings of the morning, if I dwell by the farthest oceans, [10] even there your hand will guide me, and your strength will support me.

1 – He’s been with you since the beginning

Psalm 139:13-17 NLT
[13] You made all the delicate, inner parts of my body and knit me together in my mother’s womb. [14] Thank you for making me so wonderfully complex! Your workmanship is marvelous-how well I know it. [15] You watched me as I was being formed in utter seclusion, as I was woven together in the dark of the womb. [16] You saw me before I was born. Every day of my life was recorded in your book. Every moment was laid out before a single day had passed. [17] How precious are your thoughts about me, O God. They cannot be numbered!

2 – He will never leave you 

3 – Reach out to Jesus

Psalm 121:1-3 NLT
[1] I look up to the mountains- does my help come from there? [2] My help comes from the LORD, who made heaven and earth! [3] He will not let you stumble; the one who watches over you will not slumber.

Lifegroup Questions and Prayer:
1 – How do you feel knowing that God has always been close to you?
2 – What do we do when we don’t feel like He’s close?
3 – Are you reaching out to Jesus? Let’s pray!

Bounce back!

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1 Peter 5:10 NLT
[10] In his kindness God called you to share in his eternal glory by means of Christ Jesus. So after you have suffered a little while, he will restore, support, and strengthen you, and he will place you on a firm foundation.

1 – Restore you

2 – Support you

1 Thessalonians 3:8 NLT
[8] It gives us new life to know that you are standing firm in the Lord.

3 – Strengthen you 

Colossians 1:11 NLT
[11] We also pray that you will be strengthened with all his glorious power so you will have all the endurance and patience you need. May you be filled with joy

4 – Place you on a firm foundation

Jesus: Lord And Samurai

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(Mark 10:42-44) Jesus called them together and said, “You know that those who are regarded as rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their high officials exercise authority over them. (43) Not so with you. Instead, whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant, (44) and whoever wants to be first must be slave of all.

(Mark 10:45) For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.

(John 10:17) The reason my Father loves me is that I lay down my life—only to take it up again.

1. We Serve The Lord With A New Nature

(2 Peter 1:3) His divine power has given us everything we need for a godly life through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness.

2. We Serve With Joy And Strength

(Psalm 100:2) Worship the Lord with gladness; come before him with joyful songs.

(Nehemiah 8:10b) For the joy of the Lord is your strength.

3. We Serve With Purpose And Vision

(Romans 12:6a) We have different gifts, according to the grace given to each of us.

4. We Are Touched By God (Anointed) To Serve

(Exodus 36:2) Then Moses summoned Bezalel and Oholiab and every skilled person to whom the Lord had given ability and who was willing to come and do the work.

5. We Are Rewarded – Now And In Heaven.

(Mark 10:29-31) “Truly I tell you,” Jesus replied, “no one who has left home or brothers or sisters or mother or father or children or fields for me and the gospel (30) will fail to receive a hundred times as much in this present age: homes, brothers, sisters, mothers, children and fields—along with persecutions—and in the age to come eternal life. (31) But many who are first will be last, and the last first.”

(Philippians 2:5-11) In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus: (6) Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage; (7) rather, he made himself nothing by taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness. (8) And being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to death— even death on a cross! (9) Therefore God exalted him to the highest place and gave him the name that is above every name, (10) that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, (11) and every tongue acknowledge that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

I can do it!

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Joshua 1:9, 11:16 NLT
“This is my command—be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid or discouraged. For the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.”
So Joshua took all that land, the hill-country and all the South, and all the land of Goshen, and the lowland and the Arabah, the hill-country of Israel and its lowland;

How to overcome fear with courage:

1. Know that God is with us

Romans 8:31 AMP
“What then shall we say to all these things? If God is for us, who can be against us?”

2. Step out even if you think you’re not ready

1 Samuel 17:32-33, 46-47 NLT
““Don’t worry about this Philistine,” David told Saul. “I’ll go fight him!” “Don’t be ridiculous!” Saul replied. “There’s no way you can fight this Philistine and possibly win! You’re only a boy, and he’s been a man of war since his youth.”

Today the Lord will conquer you, and I will kill you and cut off your head. And then I will give the dead bodies of your men to the birds and wild animals, and the whole world will know that there is a God in Israel! And everyone assembled here will know that the Lord rescues his people, but not with sword and spear. This is the Lord’s battle, and he will give you to us!””

3. Understand that you will do even greater things!

John 14:12 NIV
“Very truly I tell you, whoever believes in me will do the works I have been doing, and they will do even greater things than these, because I am going to the Father.”

Lifegroup questions and prayer:

1. Do you regularly have fear in your life?
2. How can you overcome these fear with God’s power given in you?
3. Let’s pray about it together!