Part 1: Reawakening to the Glory of Christ | 1/9/22
1. The purpose of Week One of '40 Days of Prayer' is reawakening ourselves to the glory of Christ. In what ways do you sense a need for a fresh awareness of God in your life?
2. What experiences have you had of God and His glory that have been genuine turning points in your life?
a) What is your response to hearing other's share their experiences and testimonies?
3. Read Philippians 2:5-11. How is obedience related to God being glorified?
4. Read Revelation 3:1-3. How do you sense yourself responding to these verses?
5. Read 1 John 3:9 and Romans 8:11. Because spiritual renewal comes from God in us, spend some time in silent prayer committing yourself to what the Spirit wants to do in and through you. 1) Confess anything the Spirit brings to mind. 2) Ask Him to show you what step He wants you to take next. 3) Stay silent and let Him examine you. Ask Him whether you’re running away from anything He wants you to work through with Him. 4) Ask him to fill you with His love for others. Pray for people you are in relationship with who need Jesus.
a) Come back together as a group and share anything God spoke to you about in prayer.
Part 2: Awakening to the Glory of Christ | 1/16/22
1. What impact does a lack of confidence in our faith have on us as Christians?
2. What makes you sometimes have doubts about Jesus?
3. Read Hebrews 2:10-18. How does Jesus’ shared experience with you (His humanity) encourage you?
a) Why did Jesus consider that shared experience vital to what He had come to achieve?
4. Read Hebrews 9:11-15. Our forgiveness is a gift, but it wasn’t free. Spend a few moments in silence considering the cost of your conscience being cleansed. Reflect on your attitude to current sin in your life. How powerful do you really believe the death of Christ is?
a) Is there anything you are carrying the shame of unnecessarily?
b) Do you treat His death as precious, or are you flippant about your sin and salvation?
5. Read Romans 8:31-39. How confident can we be?
6. Thank God for what He has done for you.
Part 3: Awakening to the Spirit of Christ | 1/23/22
1. What are the implications of the Holy Spirit being God, Himself?
2. Read Ephesians 1:13-17. What are the specific roles of the Holy Spirit in our lives?
3. What can you point to, personally, as the evidence of the Spirit of God in you?
a) What encouragement can this evidence give you in the context of the Holy Spirit being these three things:
i) proof that we are saved
ii) the presence of an Advocate
iii) the deposit guaranteeing our eternity with God.
4. Read Ephesians 1:17-18. How has God's Spirit revealed truth from the Bible specifically to you recently?
5. Think of the challenges in your life right now. What happens when you believe that the same Spirit who raised Jesus from the dead lives in you?
6. Read Philippians 2:13. How can you make yourself more aware of His Spirit this week?
7. Discuss what keeps you from submitting to the Spirit?
Part 4: Awakening to the Church of Christ | 1/30/22
1. Read Matthew 16:13-19. What difference does it make when we remember God is the owner of the church - that we individually and as a community, belong to Him?
2. What does it mean that Jesus is the rock the church is built on?
3. Read Colossians 1:19-20. What does it mean to be ambassadors of God?
a) How would you sum up the message of reconciliation in one sentence?
4. Read 1 Peter 2:5-9. What praises do you have for the glory of God?
a) How can you declare them?
5. Read Matthew 18:18. What are the implications of the church being greater than anything that tries to come against it?
6. Read Matthew 18:19. Jesus has given us the keys to open the kingdom of heaven to others. What’s your response to this?
7. Skim through the rest of the content of Matthew 18. If Jesus (the head of the church) has given us (as His ambassadors) the authority to declare behavior right or wrong in the context of the church community (arguments, immorality etc), how does this affect your attitude to: church discipline, restoration after falling away, reconciliation after disagreement, and forgiveness after offenses?
Part 5: Awakening to the Church of Christ | 2/06/22
1. If people were to look at your life, what would they say the purpose of the Church is?
2. Read Luke 14:15-24. What was the problem with those who were invited to the banquet originally? Why did the master not tell the servants to go back and compel them?
4. Read Matthew 5:14-16. Jesus has asked us to be a light on a hill. What does it look like for us, as His servants, to compel others to come to the feast? What doesn't it look like?
5. Who are the people that God has put in your life that may feel like they are outsiders/uninvited/disqualified from the feast? How could you make them know and feel they are wanted?
6. Take a moment to listen to God. What is a step you can take this week to put this teaching into practice? How can you compel with love and grace?
Part 6: Awakening to the Return of Christ | 2/13/22
1. Read Mark 13:32-37. Do you look forward to Jesus' imminent return—or are there 'bucket list' type things you'd be disappointed to miss if Jesus came back tomorrow? Why/why not?
2. Read Matthew 16:19-21. To what degree are you storing up treasure on earth/in Heaven? What does your answer to question 1 reveal?
3. Read 2 Timothy 4:5-8. How does the way we live affect our attitude to Jesus' return?
a) What would need to happen—what do you need to do—for you to consider yourself ready? Why?
4. Read Mark 13:33. How can you live 'on guard' and 'alert' for Christ's return? What does this mean, and what does it look like?
5. Do you have any fears or reservations about Jesus' imminent return? Why?