Before the Session
Facilitator: In advance of the session
- Have the Bible Background Video ready to view.
- Review today’s scripture text and the session activities to help better facilitate the discussion.
- Encourage your group to listen to the Faithelement podcast ahead of the next session (Share the link via email or social media)
Context (From the Current Session Page)
Begin by sharing together this satirical article, then ask questions like:
- What about this article is potentially most funny or offensive and why?
- Humor is usually most affective when it introduces unexpected twists to things that people hold to be essentially true. Since that is the case, what about this article do you think might ring true to people and why?
- What kinds of things do you think people might use as a substitute for the things that they get from faith, and why would they do so?
- Jesus’ first disciples developed their faith as they walked with him and personally heard his teachings. By what means has God helped you develop your own faith?
- By what means do you find comfort in your faith?
Content (From the Mind Session Page)
Ask questions like:
- Glancing back at the end of chapter 13, we see that Jesus has just told his disciples he will be leaving them, going somewhere they can’t follow. For these men and women who had experienced God’s presence so closely every day for three years, this was distressing news. In what ways does the disciple’s anxiety come out in this passage?
- In what ways does Jesus begin addressing their fear in the earlier part of the chapter?
- This passage has become particularly meaningful at funerals… but how is it comforting to all of us who believe in Jesus?
- In what ways do Thomas and Phillip express their fear, and how does Jesus comfort them?
- How will the world know Jesus after this, and what role do his followers play?
- Why is it significant that the Spirit will “remind us” of the things Jesus taught?
- In what ways does Jesus display it times when he might be anxious, or when he is suffering?
- What does it mean for us to have that peace now?
Closure (from the Media Session page)
Tell the group:
As much as we can come to view our homes, families, and friends as sources of comfort, they can also be sources of stress and conflict. The mere fact that we live in a certain place, or with certain people, does not guarantee that we will always be happy and cooperative with each other. Growth creates friction, after all, and a home place that never experiences tension may become pretty boring and unsatisfactory.
Play Amy and Me-Maw and ask questions like:
- How do you handle conflict in your home?
- What do you think is the best solution to the issue raised in this video?
- As followers of Jesus we talk often about the comfort and encouragement of the Holy Spirit, in what ways might that work in this situation?
- In what ways might the occasional tense moment actually increase the sense of comfort we might feel with a person or place?
- If family and marriage is about love, why is it sometimes hard for us to actually love another as God loves us?
- What time or place is, for you, so comforting that you tell stories of your time spent there?
- By what means can we keep from treating God’s Spirit as simply something we take for granted as opposed to something we live with and through?
- In what ways can we allow God’s Spirit to transform lives other than our own?
Close in prayer