Well it looks like Christmas from where I am writing. The bigger question is do you and I look like Christmas? Do our lives reflect the Christ of Christmas? The way we think, talk and act. The way we look at others and make decisions. Do we look like Christmas? How can we be like Christ? What must change?
We have to very intentionally use the “CHRISTMAS FILTER”. We must learn how to let the true person and presence of Christ to filter and guide our lives instead of our own opinions culture and biases. This Sunday I will show you what the bible teaches on the Christmas filter in many areas. This is how we stand out as followers of Christ.
I can’t wait to see you. Make a special effort to come.
PREPARING FOR SUNDAY: SMALL GROUP QUESTIONS
Please pray and read the following scriptures:
Matthew 1:18-24 Now the birth of Jesus Christ was as follows: when His mother Mary had been betrothed to Joseph, before they came together she was found to be with child by the Holy Spirit. (19) And Joseph her husband, being a righteous man and not wanting to disgrace her, planned to send her away secretly. (20) But when he had considered this, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream, saying, “Joseph, son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary as your wife; for the Child who has been conceived in her is of the Holy Spirit. (21) “She will bear a Son; and you shall call His name Jesus, for He will save His people from their sins.” (22) Now all this took place to fulfill what was spoken by the Lord through the prophet: (23) “BEHOLD, THE VIRGIN SHALL BE WITH CHILD AND SHALL BEAR A SON, AND THEY SHALL CALL HIS NAME EMMANUEL,” which translated means, “GOD WITH US.” (24) And Joseph awoke from his sleep and did as the angel of the Lord commanded him, and took Mary as his wife,
- To follow God like Joseph what would God have to do to change your thinking?
- What attitudes and biases would Joseph have to think differently about?
- How much does our culture and upbringing affect the way we see the world and others?
Rom 12:1-2 Therefore I urge you, brethren, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies a living and holy sacrifice, acceptable to God, which is your spiritual service of worship. (2) And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect.
- Why is it essential to intentionally present every area and way of thinking to God for change and renewal?
Eph 4:22-24 that, in reference to your former manner of life, you lay aside the old self, which is being corrupted in accordance with the lusts of deceit, (23) and that you be renewed in the spirit of your mind, (24) and put on the new self, which in the likeness of God has been created in righteousness and holiness of the truth.
- Describe why this is so hard to change habits of thinking. Please share an example.
2 Co 10:4-5 for the weapons of our warfare are not of the flesh, but divinely powerful for the destruction of fortresses. (5) We are destroying speculations and every lofty thing raised up against the knowledge of God, and we are taking every thought captive to the obedience of Christ.
- What part can the scripture play in changing your mind to be more like Christ?
Psa 119:11 Your word I have treasured in my heart, That I may not sin against You.
- How often and fully should you measure your attitude and actions against the life of Christ?
1 Jn 2:6 the one who says he abides in Him ought himself to walk in the same manner as He walked.
Eph 5:1-2 therefore be imitators of God, as beloved children; (2) and walk in love, just as Christ also loved you and gave Himself up for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God as a fragrant aroma.
- How can we pray for you specifically?