Grinchmas - Week 2 - Why Grinchmas?
How to use the Sermon Discussion Questions:
- Scripture is provided as a convenience to you and for those who may not have a bible.
- Excerpts are provided from Tom’s sermon to help the group remember the important parts of his message. Feel free to read these together as a group, or you may simply want to use them as a reminder to put in your own words. Don’t feel the need to read everything in this document as a group. Use what you need, skip what you don’t.
Matthew 5:40–42 (NLT) If you are sued in court and your shirt is taken from you, give your coat, too. If a soldier demands that you carry his gear for a mile, carry it two miles. Give to those who ask, and don’t turn away from those who want to borrow.
Isaiah 9:2–7 (NLT)
The people who walk in darkness will see a great light. For those who live in a land of deep darkness, a light will shine. You will enlarge the nation of Israel, and its people will rejoice. They will rejoice before you as people rejoice at the harvest . . . For a child is born to us, a son is given to us. The government will rest on his shoulders. And he will be called: Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.
Matthew 1:21–23 (NLT) And she will have a son, and you are to name him Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins.” All of this occurred to fulfill the Lord’s message through his prophet: “Look! The virgin will conceive a child! She will give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel, which means ‘God is with us.’ ”
This week in Tom’s message he touched on some of our hopes for ourselves and others. Just for fun what are a few things that you are hoping for this Christmas? (experiences, people you’ll see, events etc.). What do you look forward to most at Christmas time each year?
1. Toward the beginning of his message, Pastor Tom talked about how most of us can relate to the Grinch. We need a heart change and we hope for it in others.
What are some moments when you feel most like a Grinch? When do you think others may view you as a Grinch? What do you think makes the Grinch so relatable?
2. Excerpt from Tom’s Message:
And now you understand why we are talking about the Grinch. Out of all the wise teachings Jesus offered, at the center of them was this hopeful message, “Your heart can be changed.”
Can you think of some examples of areas where you have watched Jesus change your heart? What are some areas where you are currently praying for heart change?
3. Read Matthew 5:40-42.
What might be a modern day example of someone being sued and giving someone their coat or carrying gear for a soldier? Why do you think Jesus gave the people these teachings?
4. In his message Pastor Tom shared the vision of ALIVE:
We want to reach spiritually hungry people and introduce them to a personal relationship with Jesus and an active role in healthy Christian community.
We believe if people will invest in a personal relationship with Jesus and an active role in healthy Christian community their lives will be changed.
What do you think it means to have a personal relationship with Jesus? What are some ways that someone might invest in a relationship with Jesus?
5. How do you define an active role in Christian community? How do these two components (personal relationship and active role in Christian community) work together to transform people?
6. Read Isaiah 9:2-7.
What statements in this passage bring you hope? Which part of this prophecy about Jesus encourages you the most today and why?
7. Read Matthew 1:21-23.
What do these verses tell us about Jesus? How might you explain the idea that “God is with us” to someone who does not believe in Jesus? Or if you do not believe in Jesus, what do you think of when you think about God being with someone?
8. Excerpt from Tom’s Message:
He (Jesus) is saying there is hope for me and there is hope for you. Because he is in the business of changing hearts and he can change mine, and he can change yours. And when our hearts change, so do our lives. We live differently because we are different.
How might it impact the way you live if you believed Jesus could really change your heart? How can you know God is at work changing your heart?
So now heart change is on the table for me, for you and all the Grinch-like people on the planet. All this leads to just one transformative question the whole world has to decide one.
Do you want to change?
Think back to question 2, what areas in your life are you hoping will change? How can you know if you really want to change?
Pastor Tom talked about how God uses our personal relationship with Jesus and an active role in healthy Christian community to transform our hearts.
Which of these areas might you need to invest more in this Christmas season? What is one step you can take to do that this week?