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At The Movies

At the Movies - Week 5

At the Movies - Week 5

KICKSTART

What is the worst weather storm you’ve been through – snow, tornado, hurricane, other?


VIEW

[Optional] For those who haven’t seen the movie, view The Impossible trailer:

 

 

Click below to view the video for this week's message


THROTTLE UP

1.  a.  Discuss your observations about the video, and the recurring theme: “through it all the light would still shine...”

      b. The Impossible is about a terrible natural disaster. What are some similarities between the concepts of storms and darkness in our lives?

2.  The Bible frequently refers to a life of faith as light versus darkness. Have a different person read each of the following verses, then discuss what the writer is saying about darkness and light. Psalm 112:4, Psalm 139:12, John 1:4-5, Matthew 4:16-17, John 8:12, 2 Corinthians 4:6, 1 John 1:5

3. Continue reading 1 John 1:5-7. What do these verses say about how we should live our lives? In verse 9, what is the cure for walking in darkness

4. All of us have experienced dark times and overwhelming storms in our own lives. Read Galatians 6:9, and John 16:33. For those experiencing storms in life, why is it important to persevere? What is our hope?

5. Read Isaiah 58:10 and 2 Corinthians 1:3-4. How can the storms in our lives serve a purpose and have meaning?


CHECK THE MIRRORS

1. Have 1 or 2 people share briefly about a time they experienced Jesus’s light and provision during a personal storm. What did they learn? What can others learn from their experience?

2. Some of us are in the middle of a storm. Remember you are not alone. Share with the group your fears about the situation. Take time to pray for these situations. Think of ways to pray and encourage each other throughout the week.

3.  Some of us need to be the ones to bring help to those in a storm. We have been comforted so we can comfort others. We can BE the light of the world to others through our actions. Think of one or two people you can encourage in the weeks to come: Pray, listen, cook a meal, babysit kids, or put an anonymous gift card in their mailbox. How else could you bring light to their darkness?


[Optional Expanded Discussion]

1.  Read Matthew 8:23-27. What insights for today’s topic do you find in this well-known story?

2.  Taking the story in context, identify and discuss the many other “storms” included in the entire chapter. What are the correlations?

3. What are some specific ways you can encourage someone on your ministry team this week? Pray for each other and your ministry and leadership roles.

 

 

 

 

At the Movies - Week 4

At the Movies - Week 4

KICKSTART

What was a big take-a-way for you from this weekend’s message?


VIEW

[Optional] For those who haven’t seen the movie, view the Unbroken trailer:

 

THROTTLE UP

1. Louie Zamporini was an Olympic runner, who went on to live a life marked by perseverance and endurance. Why do you think the Bible repeatedly uses the metaphor of running a race to describe the Christian life? List the correlations.

2.  Read James 1:2-5.  How do we normally view hardships? How does James view them? Why is wisdom needed - especially in these situations?

3. Read Romans 5:1-5. How are hope, suffering, and God’s love interrelated?

4. Read Hebrews 11:1, then 12:1-3.  Looking back through chapter 11, who are the “cloud of witnesses?” What will make us able to run our race with perseverance? How is Jesus our model?


VIEW

Click below to view the video for this week's message. 


CHECK THE MIRRORS

1.  How are you doing in running your “race”? Fresh – just starting, Tired & sore – need to rest, Wounded & thinking of dropping out, Got a second wind, Where the heck is the finish line?

2. Are there any areas in your life you may need to address in order to continue moving forward spiritually? (forgiveness, bitterness, loss, failure, fear, guilt, apathy)

3. Each one of us is running a race, but we don’t run alone. The fact that you are in a connection group means there is a group of people who will support and cheer you as you run your race. Think of one thing you need this week that would help you to keep going. Then pray together for each person’s need.

4. Are there any physical/tangible ways your group can help and support each other this week?


[Optional Expanded Discussion]

1. As you look back over the race you’ve been running, what were some of your greatest challenges? What do you see in hindsight? What did you learn?

2.  What is the significance of Heb. 11:39-40 to 12:1?

3. Are there any younger, or new believers in your ministry in whose lives you can be a witness? What would that look like?

4. Pray for each other, and for the ministries of Eastside, for the many people who are struggling to persevere.

At the Movies - Week 3

At the Movies - Week 3

KICKSTART

What comes to mind when Dr. Martin Luther King is mentioned?


VIEW

For those who haven’t seen the movie, view the 42 trailer:

Click below to view the video for this week's message. 


CHECK THE MIRRORS

1. In his message Gene said, “We have wall-building hearts.” Is there some person in your life towards whom you’ve built a wall in your heart? Is there a people group?

If so, acknowledge your feelings to God, and ask him to give you a heart of acceptance and compassion.

2. Jackie Robinson once said that the moment when Pee Wee Reese put an arm around his shoulders saved his career. Is there a situation in your life where you need an arm around your shoulders? Is there someone you know who needs your arm around his or her shoulders?  What might that look like?

3.  These can be difficult topics to discuss because of our differing backgrounds, experiences, and deep-rooted beliefs. If comfortable, acknowledge where you may struggle with these issues. Then spend time praying together as a group for each other, for our church, and for unity in Christ.


[Optional Expanded Discussion]

1.  Is it possible to accept Jesus’s words about acceptance but still live with subtle biases? What could we do to live more consistently?

2.  Is there a time when you were able to accept a hurt or offense – and turn the other cheek? What was the result of that experience? Conversely, was there a time you retaliated? What was the result?

3.  In your ministry or leadership roles, what are some ways you could support and encourage greater diversity? Is there someone you need to encourage – or confront – about his or her attitude towards this topic?

4.  Read John 17:20-23. Discuss insights from Jesus’s prayer.

 

 

At the Movies - Week 2

At the Movies - Week 2

KICKSTART

As a child or teen, who was your first crush and why?


VIEW

Optional: For those who haven’t seen the movie Gene used this weekend, view The Notebook trailer:

Video 1

Video 2


THROTTLE UP

1. What observations do you have about the videos? What are some significant differences between the two perspectives? Was there anything in the second video that surprised you?

2. How does our culture portray romance and love? How does it portray marriage?

3. Is marriage still significant in today’s world?

a.  Read Genesis 2:18. What is the main reason God created marriage? Why is that important?

 b.  The Hebrew word for “helper” is “ezer.” It’s used 17 times in the Old Testament to describe God himself. Read Psalm 124:8, Psalm 146:5. What kind of “helper” is the woman intended to be?

4. Read 1 John 4:7-11. What is our example of how love should be? Why is that difficult in day-to-day life?

5. All relationships experience difficulty. As Gene said, “You can either break up, or you can trust God for a break through.” Read Matthew 19:26, 6:21. How do these verses encourage a break-through in a marriage?

6. Thinking of single parents, and those in this study who are not married, read Deuteronomy 31:8, Psalm 68:5-6, Isaiah 46:4, Psalm 91:1-4. What are God’s promises to you?


CHECK THE MIRRORS

1. Gene talked about how we believe that God created the universe, that he died on a cross, that he raised from the dead. But there are still things we doubt he can do, such as heal a broken relationship or transform a marriage. Is there something in your life or marriage you’re not sure God can change?

2.  What’s one thing you could do this week to invest in your marriage?

3.  As appropriate and as you feel comfortable, let the group know how we can pray for you and your marriage or relationships.


[Optional Expanded Discussion]

1. For anyone married more than 25 years, what are some key lessons you’ve learned or habits you’ve developed that contribute to the success of your marriage?

2. Read 1 Corinthians 7:8-16. Why do you think Paul says it’s good for people to “stay unmarried” as he was? Is marriage merely an antidote for burning passion?

3. Compare 1 Corinthians 7:10-16, and Matthew 19:8-9. Discuss these teachings on divorce and the reality in today’s church. Have we failed, compromised, adapted?

4. What are some ways you could invest in encouraging young marriages?

At the Movies - Week 1

At the Movies - Week 1

KICKSTART

Gene used several clips from “Saving Mr. Banks”. Which one did you connect with the most?  Why?


VIEW


THROTTLE UP

As The Lion King shows, sometimes the past “still hurts,” but we can learn from it. More importantly, God actually can use everything in our past – good, bad, the things done to us or that we’ve done – and rework it all into something beautiful for His purpose.

1. The key text for this week is Isaiah 43:18-19. Have someone read it out loud. What reasons can you think of for why we’re instructed not to dwell on the past?

2.  Think about the word pictures here. Discuss how you see “making a way in the desert”. What about “streams in a wasteland”? Is there anything in your life today where you can see these descriptions apply?

3.  We are much more than whatever has happened to us. Read the following verses: John 15:15, 1 John 3:1, 2 Corinthians 6:18, 1 Peter 2:24, Ephesians 1:7-8, Romans 8:16-17.

Who does God say that we are?

4.  It’s been said, “We can't erase what has already been written but we can always write a better ending.” Read Philippians 3:12-14. If Christ has taken hold of us, what are we to do? What words describe how we are to do it, and why is that important?

NOTE - Letting go of the past may mean a broad spectrum of things: from deep issues of abuse or molestation, to emotional abuse, addictions, or abandonment. Other examples might be a hot temper, losing a job, a break-up with a significant other, an argument you regret with a friend, spouse, or co-worker.

5.  As we think about beginning a new year, read 2 Corinthians 5:17. Going forward – whatever your situation - what’s the best part about this promise?


VIEW


CHECK THE MIRRORS

1.  To put the past behind us means we need to let go of the hurt that others have done to us. It also means we may need to ask forgiveness of others whom we have hurt. Are there relationships in your life that need to be mended (family, friends, even co-workers)? What’s one step you could take in the next week towards putting things right?

2. What is one area in your life where you feel God may be doing “a new thing”? How can the group pray for you?

3.  As we begin the New Year, pray for your each other – for each person to be able to let go of the past and trust God for the future.

For more resources and support for hurts, habits, or hang-ups from your past, we encourage you to visit Friday Night of Hope, every Friday night on the Eastside campus.

[Optional Expanded Discussion]

1. Mature believers may have reached a point in life where their past seems settled.

a. First, honestly evaluate whether past hurts have truly been given over to God, or merely put aside with the passing of time. It’s never too late to make things right with God.

b. Because a church is made up of imperfect human beings, it is possible to be deeply wounded in our ministry, leadership, or volunteer roles. And, it’s possible that we can deeply hurt others. Do you have situations here that need to be mended? What’s one step you could take in the next week towards putting things right?

2. Are there significant people in your ministry who struggle with a difficult past?

a. How could you use your experience to mentor and coach them toward the future God has for them?


b.  If you don’t know them well enough to know their story, what’s one thing you could do to build your relationship in the next week or two? 

3. Pray together for all the Eastside connection groups working through this study – for people to experience God’s direction, forgiveness, and healing, and hope for a future.