Christ in Us | Sunday, October 9
Whenever churches come together for collective worship, one of the things they are doing is expressing a confident hope in the trajectory of history. For more than 2,000 years, the church has gathered through persecution, plague, war, famine, and darkness, always declaring that the end of the story will be a cosmos filled with Christ’s glory.
Today, we celebrate the reality that God has expressed that glory through Bethany for the last 100 years! The response to such faithfulness on God’s part can be nothing less than our full recognition that though others have gone before us, following Christ and making his glory visible, we now hold the torch of God’s light for this season. Each of us has a part to play enabling that light to shine into our community, our city, and world!
Creation | Disruption | Hope | Culmination
In Psalm 127:1–2, the wise King Solomon, who built the temple, understood the role that the Lord played in the work of his hands.
- In what ways do you benefit from those at Bethany who have gone before you?
- In what ways are you contributing to the work that Bethany is doing now, both within the church community and beyond?
- How are you contributing in a way that is preparing Bethany and your community for the future?
- As you consider your participation at Bethany, what legacy do you want to leave?
- Identify your unique gifts. How can you share those with the Bethany community?
- In your small group or among your friends, talk about the impact you have now. How might you increase your impact in a new or creative way?
Reflections for Families and Groups
Last week we talked about how we are the image of God and that our true identity is that we are loved by God. This week, take the words from last week’s response and make a sign to put somewhere in your house to remind each person of their true identity.
People were created for more than just getting by—we were made to be friends with God! That’s why God came to live with people as Jesus. Jesus showed us how to be friends with God and other people; He reminded us that this isn’t always easy, but it is ultimately the very best thing we’ll do.
Following Jesus can be hard because it’s not like just following a bunch of rules—when we say we want to follow Jesus, we’re saying that we want to live just like Jesus lived. We’re saying that we will love God and other people with everything we have! Jesus knew that we need help when it comes to following Him, so He gave us the gift of His Spirit. He told His followers about this Spirit in John 14:15–16.
This is what we mean when we say that “Christ is in us.” We’re talking about God’s Spirit living in our hearts, helping us make choices the way Jesus made them. “Christ in us” means that we want to show God’s love to other people with what we do. We want our lives to look like the life of Jesus!
- Why is following Jesus hard?
- What do we mean when we say that Jesus lives inside our hearts? Who is the Spirit?
- How does the Spirit help us? See if your family can think of a few examples that Jesus set for us. What’s your favorite story about Jesus?
- Is there something Jesus does in the story that you wish you could do? Example: “I love the story of Jesus and the Samaritan Woman because it shows that Jesus loves every person—even those who may seem strange or different than me.”
Play The Mirroring Game by pairing up and facing one another. The challenge is for one person to mimic the other perfectly by mirroring their actions. Afterward, ask kids what the hardest thing about the game is. (Typically the answer is something like, “I didn’t know what you were going to do next.”) Explain that the better you know someone, the easier it is to follow what they’re doing. This is true for us as followers of Jesus—the more we know about His life and work, the easier it will be for us to see how our lives can look like His.