It is a spirit of confidence in the living God and in His promises that rises above the difficult circumstances of life.
DISCUSSION QUESTIONS FOR SHEPHERD GROUPS
- What did you find most encouraging from this message? What was the most challenging?
- When we live a joy-filled life we have access, through the Holy Spirit, to the power to live a selfless life. Read Philippians 2:3-8. Discuss what makes it difficult for you to consider others more significant than yourself. Discuss how the proper perspective on a life of joy can facilitate greater selflessness. Is there an area of your life in which God is calling you to be more selfless?
- The second point in living a joy-filled life is that it empowers us to live without grumbling. Read Philippians 2:14-16. What do you tend to grumble about? Outward grumbling always starts with inward thoughts. On what can you meditate to short circuit grumbling before it is expressed?
- The third point in living a joy-filled life is that it empowers us to press on, even though life’s difficulties. Read Philippians 3:13-14. Discuss Paul’s primary consideration as he seeks to press on.
- The fourth point in living a joy-filled life is that it empowers us to live a life without anxiety. Read Philippians 4:6-7. How do you respond to these verses internally? What are the things in this journey that are most likely to create anxiety for you? How have you sought to respond to the anxieties of life? Discuss how a life more centered in Joy can assist with the anxieties that you face.
- Discuss the quote by Archibald Hart in his book The Anxiety Cure. “Anxiety is not a disorder that afflicts the weak, the fragile and the delicate. Often there is not the slightest hint of previous anxiety. This is the disorder of presidents, CEO’s, VP’s, ladder-climbers, powerhouses, dynamos, live wires, and go-getters. Reason? Anxiety is a disease of stress. High-pressure jobs take their toll more than low-key jobs. People who are caught up in the pursuit of excellence are particularly vulnerable because they can’t see the danger signs early enough.”
- The fifth point in living a joy-filled life is that it empowers us to be content. Read Philippians 4:11-13. Where do you find discontentment in your life? Discuss this phrase: “Contentment is wanting what you already have.” How does that strike you? Discuss the distinction between being discontent and simply seeking to improve certain things in your life. Is it a lack of contentment to seek a higher paying job or a bigger house? Explain.
- Pray together about these five areas where we called to live out a joy-filled life. Ask the Lord to reveal ways in which He wants you to be more aware of these things in your daily lives.