We seek to cultivate joy as we practice the art of remembering, focus our prayer on the needs of others, partner with others in the Body, and live with the end in mind.
DISCUSSION QUESTIONS FOR SHEPHERD GROUPS
- What did you find most encouraging from this message? What was the most challenging?
- What are your most and least favorite things about the Christmas season?
- Discuss what you believe this quote by John MacArthur means: “Joy is the flag that flies on the castle of the heart when the King is in residence there.”
- Read and discuss Philippians 2:12-13. How does obedience contribute to a journey of “working out” joy in our lives?
- Read and discuss Philippians 1:3-6. The first point in cultivating joy is “practicing the art of remembering.” When you think about the memories of your journey through life in Christ, what rises to the surface as your strongest memories along the way? What deserves a more prominent place in the “process of remembering”? Are there things that create strong memories that need to be processed through and submitted to the Lord in order to reduce their influence?
- The second point in cultivating joy is “focusing prayer on the needs of others.” Discuss your level of effectiveness in being able to focus more on the needs of others in prayer than on yourself.
- The third point in cultivating joy is “partnering with others in the Body of Christ.” Discuss how your connections through your shepherd group cultivate joy. Are there ways your group can do better in partnering together in life?
- The fourth point in cultivating joy is “living with the end in mind.” Do you find the notion of life in eternity encouraging to you? Why or why not? What do you think is getting in the way of that thought being more encouraging than it is?
- Spend some time in prayer over these four points and ask the Lord to help each of us to take steps in cultivating joy.