Bishop Leeland takes the time to share comments and address concerns regarding the recent General Conference held to discuss the future of the United Methodist Church.
Listen as we wrap up “The Power of Words” sermon series with a message called Speaking Words of Life, where we move from finding what not to say to discovering how to speak life into our lives.
This week we discuss a bad habit that we all have, but one that God set us free from.
September 16, 2019
The Power of Words – Constructive or Just Critical?
Proverbs 12:18; Ephesians 4:15; Ephesians 4:29-30; Philippians 4:8; Romans 15:13
1. Read Proverbs 12:18. How well do you take criticism? Are you able to discern the difference between constructive criticism and negative criticism?
2. Read Ephesians 4:15. How well do you give criticism? Are you able to discern the difference between giving constructive criticism and negative criticism? More importantly, would those around you say that you are constructive or negative?
3. Read Ephesians 4:29. Why do you think it is often easier to criticize than to build up and encourage? Do you think an overly-critical nature is connected to insecurities and doubts?
4. Read Philippians 4:8. Why do you think we often struggle with people’s opinions of us over God’s opinion of us? What can we do to guard against this struggle?
Read Romans 15:13. From Monday through Friday, reflect on each day, and at the end of the day ask yourself if you found fault or delivered hope more often? Think about your interactions with others and answer yourself honestly. Whatever the answer may be, challenge yourself to find a way to speak more positively in your daily interactions. If you must be in situations that require constructive criticism, ask the Holy Spirit to guide your words so that they harm less and heal more.
August 5, 2019
Who Are You? – An Ambassador
Scripture(s): 2 Corinthians 5:16-21; John 15:16-17; John 6:38
1. How would you describe yourself? As the series title asks: Who are you?
2. Read 2 Corinthians 5:16-17. What does “being in Christ” actually mean to you?
3. Read 2 Corinthians 5:18-19. What does reconciliation with God mean to you? How did you personally need to be reconciled with God?
4. Read 2 Corinthians 5:20-21. How would you describe the job of an ambassador? How do you see yourself as an ambassador of Christ? How does Paul describe our message as ambassadors of Christ, and how does that fit into your particular calling and personality?
5. Read John 15:16-17. What do you find exciting about representing heaven as an ambassador in this world? What, if anything, do you possibly find frightening? And what can help all of us overcome that fear?
Read John 6:38. How can we guard ourselves from putting our agenda before God’s agenda? What practical steps can we take to make sure we are properly doing our jobs as ambassadors of Christ?
It’s Party Time!! Today we learn about the parable of the Great Banquet and about all who are invited.
This week we discuss the parable of Good Samaritan and we use this story to transform us into God’s agents who change the world.
This Message concludes our topic, The Lost and Found, by looking at the parable of the Prodigal son through the eyes of his older brother and discovering that the true prodigal in this story is God.
Connections is a church that meets in the community to spread the seeds of God’s Kingdom through all the gifts He has given to us. But even though we are already doing this, God still has a word for us as he seeks to perfect our work. Listen as we discuss this through the true meaning of the parable of the Mustard Seed.
Listen as we follow the Jesus, the master story, in the parable of the Pharisee and the Tax Collector.
Philippians 2:14-16a; Philippians 2:17-18; Exodus 16:1-8; Psalm 106:24-25; Colossians 4:2; Luke 6:45
1. What do you complain about the most? Why?
2. What is the most minor thing that you complain about? What is the most significant thing you complain about?
3. Read Philippians 2:14-16a. How has complaining influenced your life? How is complaining different than holding “firmly to the Word of Life”, as Paul describes?
4. Read Exodus 16:1-8 and Psalm 106:24-25. How is constantly complaining actually grumbling against the Lord? Does this perspective change how you understand complaining?
5. Read Luke 6:45 and Colossians 4:2. What are some blessings that you haven’t been grateful for lately? How can you regularly turn these blessings into gratitude toward God?
Read Philippians 2:17-18. The Challenge: From today until next Sunday, try to go through each day without complaining. If a week seems too difficult, then try a day at a time. Whenever your feel the need to complain, praise God. Life up God and thank God for your blessings. As you go through the week—have you noticed any differences in your attitude?