Why settle for ripples


Part 1: Introduction - Boldly Embracing the Mission (Acts 1-28)  |  04/28/19

Study Questions


1. Split into pairs and pray for each other before you start.


2. How does a lack of clarity affect your confidence as a witness for Jesus?


3. Read Acts 1:8, 1 Peter 3:15, 1 Peter 2:12

    a)  How prepared are you to share your faith journey with others who don’t know Jesus?

    b)  Break into pairs and share your conversion story.  Give feedback on how each other can be more confident and clear.


4. We are called to be witnesses locally.  Share with the group who you are taking the message to and how the group can be praying for you and your friends.


5. Read 2 Corinthians 1:21-22, 1 John 2:20-27

     a)  Discuss how the Holy Spirit acted in the Old Testament verses now.

     b)  Reflect on how the indwelling of the Spirit changes the way you live.

Part 2: Boldly Witnessing by the Power of the Spirit (Acts 1:1-6:7)  |  05/05/19

 Study Questions


1.  What do you picture or think of when you think of someone 'empowered' or 'filled' by the Holy Spirit?

     a)  Do you see yourself as being like this?  Why/why not?

2.  In the first 6 chapters of Acts Luke intentionally illustrates the radical change in the way God interacts with His people by comparing the 'before' and 'after' of the events of Pentecost.  Discuss how each of the following things changed, trying to find biblical references to support your opinion...

     a)  The Temple in Jerusalem

     b)  The Holy Spirit

     c)  The Jewish Feasts

3.  Read Ephesians 1:17-23, 2 Timothy 1:7-8 and Daniel 7:13-14.  What does it practically mean to have the full power and authority of God because we have the Spirit of God living in us?

4.  Read Luke 24:45-49 and Acts 1:8-9.  What is the link between the Mission of God and the Spirit of God?

5.  What's going on in your life right now that's making you aware of your need for the Spirit of God instead of your ability?

6.  Share and pray for each other's weaknesses and opportunities to witness, and that you'll live and speak boldly for God.

Part 3: Boldly Breaking Through our Fears (Acts 6:8-9:31)  |  05/12/19

Study Questions


1.  What's a personal fear of yours that actually prevents you from doing something?  Why does it stop you?

     a)  What fear/s stop you being a more effective witness for Jesus?

2.  Read Acts 6:3-5, 8-11.  Stephen was a bold witness for Jesus even though he knew it would likely cause him to be rejected by the Jewish leaders.  Does the desire to be accepted ever stop you from doing what you know God wants you to do?  Why/why not?

3.  Read Acts 7:59-8:4.  The Christians scattered from Jerusalem by persecution embraced the sudden change of being displaced and starting new lives in unfamiliar surroundings, because they believed God had prepared them for the new places they lived.  What unexpected and undesired changes in your life could be things God has deliberately used to help you be a witness for Him?

4.  Read Acts 8:5-8, 26-31.  When God told Philip to leave his exciting, effective ministry in Samaria and go to the road to Gaza, Philip obeyed even though he didn't know any details. 

     a)  Do you ever sometimes refuse to obey God because you don't know the details?  Why?

     b)  Share a time when you have obeyed God without knowing the details or likely outcome.  What happened?  What did you learn?

5.  Read Acts 9:1-6, 10-16.  Saul seemed the most inadequate person to be a leader in the church, but he had confidence he was chosen by God.  

     a)  Read Ephesians 2:10.  How does knowing you are chosen and called by God make a difference to your fear of being inadequate?

     b)  Ananias was afraid of Paul but he trusted God's word more than his feelings.  What can you do to become more confident that God is in control?

6.  Which of the following fears holds you back the most from being a witness of Jesus: rejection, change, lack of control, inadequacy, being different?  Why?  

     a)  What's a promise from God in the Bible that could help you overcome that fear?

     b)  What is one thing you could do this week to overcome that fear?

Part 4: Boldly Living With Friends and Foes (Acts 9:32-12:24)  |  05/19/19

Study Questions


1.  How can church activity become a distraction from our real mission of loving God and telling others about Him?

2.  When was the last time you shared the good news about Jesus with someone?  Why did you share on that occasion?

     a)  If it's been a long time, what do you think distracts you from doing it more regularly?

3.  Compare Acts 2:13 with Acts 10:46.  What is the implication of the word 'tongues' being the same in both events?

     a)  What evidences of the Spirit do we see in other believers that connects us?

4.  Peter was criticized and pressured by the church because they were threatened by change and by others (who were not like them) accepting Christ as their Savior.  How comfortable are you with diversity in the church?

     a)  To what degree are you open to changing the traditional way we 'do church' (programs and activities) in order to reach people far from God?

5)  How are you deliberately connecting with those who don't know Jesus?

Part 5: Boldly Pressing On When Nothing Makes Sense (Acts 12:25-16:5)  |  05/26/19

Study Questions


1.  Complete the sentence: "Because God is always at work and in control, I can _________ "

2.  Acts 13:1 lists several influential people from different ethnicities and backgrounds.  Who are the people in your life that have influence in other people groups that you're not part of?  

     a)  What doors of opportunity might God be opening for you through these people (as per Acts 14:27)?

3.  Read Acts 13:45, 14:2 and 19.  Why do other Christians sometimes oppose new things God is doing?

     a)  Do you ever see that same reluctance or attitude towards change in your life?  When/why?

     b)  How can you respond by faith instead as God moves us to new opportunities at East Park?

4.  Read Acts 15:36-40.  These men had a serious disagreement but God didn't allow it to interfere with the mission of spreading the gospel.  Examine your life.  Do you have any broken relationships with other believers?  How might they be negatively impacting your witness and ability to fulfill your mission?  What do you need to do about it?

5.  How do you see God at work in your life or at East Park (be specific)?  How does this affect your confidence?

6.  Paul knew his calling.  What are your spiritual gifts and passions that are indicative of your specific calling?  (If you're unsure, email Kim Lawson at lawsonsinamerica@gmail.com to register for the next Network Course.)

7.  God made Paul wait 13 years to begin his ministry because God was preparing him for a life of service that would include hardship and suffering.  How is God preparing you right now?

Part 6: Boldly Trusting God Knows What He's Doing  (Acts 16:6-19:20)  |  06/02/19

Study Questions


1.  In Matthew 16:18 Jesus promised: "I will build my church..."  And in Acts 16-19 we see God doing exactly that, using different

     people's teachings, miracles and stories of lives being transformed to impact Asia Minor, as summarized in Acts 19:20.

     a) What does it look like for God to build his church today?

     b) How can we actively let the Holy Spirit lead us?

2.  Read 1 Corinthians 3:4-9 and 12:11-18.  How can we be united as a group of believers?

     a)  What difference does it make for you to think of your gifts and abilities as unique?

     b)  What is the purpose of our gifting?

     c)  Why is it important to serve using your gifting?

3.  Read Acts 19:8-17.  What evidences are there of God's Spirit at work in your life that might make others hold Jesus' name in 'high


     a)  What might God be doing in your life so that others will come to faith?

4.  How can we trust God when...

     a)  ...he doesn't do things in our life that he does in others?

     b)  ...he doesn't rescue us from tough/bad situations?

     c)  What kind of things make you question if you can trust God?

5.  Read 2 Corinthians 1:21-22, 1 John 2:20,27, Romans 12:13 and John 14:16.  How would you answer someone who is seeking an 'anointing' of the Spirit, or 'more of the Spirit' - or worry that they might lose their salvation?

Part 7: Boldly Embracing The Unknown  (Acts 19:20-28:31) 06/09/19

Study Questions 


1.  How do feel when you find yourself in an uncertain situation, and you don't know what the future holds?

2.  Read Psalm 147:19-20 and Acts 3:22-26.  How does it feel to know that you are a direct beneficiary of God's promise to Abraham to bless "all peoples on earth" through his offspring (Jesus)?

     a) God blessed Israel with a relationship, but also with the responsibility of sharing it with others.  As you enjoy your relationship with God, how aware are you of your responsibility to share it with others?

3.  Read Acts 20:29-30.  Why is it so hard to stop trying to control everything and trust God to take care of the future?

     a)  What makes you want to be in control of your future?

4.  Read Acts 23:11, 27:23-24 and Hebrews 6:1.  Share a situation when you 'embraced the unknown' and in hindsight can see how God carried you through that situation.  

     a)  What difference does it make knowing that God is constantly 'by your side' and actively helps you when you trust Him?

5.  Read Acts 20:18-25 and 1 Peter 2:23.  What can we learn from the examples of Paul and Jesus that will help us live boldly surrendered lives to God?

6.  Read Acts 1:8, 20:24, 28:29.  The mission of sharing the gospel with the world ('transforming lives in our communities through knowing and growing in relationship with Jesus') is a constant theme throughout the Book of Acts.  What can you do to better orientate your life towards this mission?