The Sacred Overlap
“Marks of a Disciple”
1 Thessalonians 2:1-7a
How you respond to opposition and suffering says a lot about what motivates you.
When we are motivated by a selfish desire for approval, we… live in order to be filled.
- give up in the face of opposition.
- manipulate others with our words in order to gain something for ourselves.
- perform for people rather than really loving them.
When we are motivated by the truth of what God says about us, we… live out of the love of God.
- aren’t dominated by the drive for self-preservation.
- relinquish our rights for the sake of others.
- live with gentle compassion toward others.
- reflect Jesus to a world that desperately needs Him.
Big Idea: If we are to endure through opposition in the sacred overlap, we must remember and be motivated by God’s approval of us in Christ.
Core Christlike Characteristic: Relates with Other-Centered Love.
- Icebreaker: Share a book, movie, or video game you weren’t allowed to read, watch, etc. as a kid.
- Have you ever spent time considering your motivations?
What did you discover?
- As you listened to the sermon, did you more closely identify with the motivations that come from the world (like the charlatans) or the motivations that come from Jesus (like Paul)?
Why do you think that is?
- Do you find your motivations to be black and white, either all good or all bad?
Why or why not?
- What differences do you see in your life when you are living in order to please God versus living out of the fact that God loves you?
- When do you feel most loved and accepted by God? Read Romans 5:8-9.
What seemed to stick out to Paul about God’s love?
- Do you set aside regular time to hear God say, “I love you”?
Before you leave, make a plan to get alone with God sometime this week and meditate on how deep His love is for you.