Life Group Guidelines
Guideline for 28 November 2013 Hearts melted and lives changed by His kindness
Intro: Have you been shown unusual kindness by somebody during this past year? What was the situation and how did their kindness touch your life?
Worship: God has shown kindness to us – it is His ongoing attitude towards us. Titus 3:3-7 says, “ For we ourselves were also once foolish, disobedient, deceived, serving various lusts and pleasures, living in malice and envy, hateful and hating one another. 4 But when the kindness and the love of God our Savior toward man appeared, 5 not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy He saved us, through the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Spirit, 6 whom He poured out on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Savior, 7 that having been justified by His grace we should become heirs according to the hope of eternal life.” This is good news! Let’s worship Him for His kindness tonight! He is kind!
Word: Let’s read about how Zacchaeus experienced kindness from Jesus in Luke 19:1-10.
Before his encounter with Jesus, what type of character was Zacchaeus? (Use the scripture and a little bit of your imagination to answer this question! In modern terms, what would you equate him with?) What do you think were Zacchaeus’ motives for trying to see Jesus?
There is no indication that Zacchaeus called out to Jesus or made himself conspicuous in any way, but we know that Jesus saw him. When you look back over the past year, how convinced are you that Jesus ‘saw’ you, wherever you were?
What do you notice and love about the initial response from Jesus towards Zacchaeus? (v.5)
Zacchaeus opens his heart and home to Jesus and the crowds complain about it.
How could you compare these two attitudes towards Jesus? (Zacchaeus vs the crowds in v.6,7)
Zacchaeus experiences the kindness of Jesus in His actions towards him and over a shared meal. This results in a change of heart. How can an unusual act of kindness change someone’s heart or attitude? Has this ever happened to you?
After a change of heart, Zacchaeus takes action in verse 8. What do you think motivated him to do what he did? (Is there any indication that it was for outward show?)
Verses 9 and 10 give us insight into why Luke chose to share this particular story with us.
Who do you think Jesus has in mind as ‘sons of Abraham’ and why would they be called this?
What does the kindness of Jesus motivate Him to do for all of mankind? (v.10) How has this worked out in your own life? (Every sinner in town would have hope because of Zacchaeus!)
Wrap-up: How have you experienced the kindness and the goodness of God during this year?
Let’s each share something that has been really special to us personally.
(Spend time in prayer thanking God for these things. Pray also for each other for favour and protection during the holiday break. Speak kindly to sinners you interact with over this time!)Faith-at-home: Speak to others in your household this week about the kindness of God towards people. Be specific in terms of how you have experienced that personally. Give thanks together.