Today is Monday, August 21st, 2017; and I am excited to learn with you! I pray you can join us for the short series, “Center,” where we learn more of the dealings of Christ and how to center upon his presence. In today’s passage we learn how Jesus, the Lord of the universe, is with us...intimately...even if we aren’t aware of Him.  


- Kim

(Take time to write down responses to these questions or discuss in your group)
_ Talk about different forms of communication/conversation...text, e-mail, phone, in-person.  How are they similar?  How are they different? What kind of relationship would you have to have with someone in order to hold their hand?  How is your communication/relationship with them, different than someone you would just text?
_ How is the Lord working in the life of someone you are walking with (to help grow in or discover Jesus)?

As we open the Bible and look into the Word of God, we understand that we read a word that has been “breathed out” by Him who keeps and sustains the universe. Yet this same God wants a personal relationship with each of us.  His arms are always outstretched to us.  His ears are always inclined to hear us.  We can expect that He is working in the universe and in our personal stories each day to redeem and transform.  Look for Him today as you pray the prayer Jesus taught us.

“Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name. Your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.” Matthew 6:9-13

DISCOVER  [Isaiah 42:5-7]
+ WHAT is this passage saying and what do we learn? (Use these questions below each portion of text to clarify the main point)

5 Thus says God, the Lord,
who created the heavens and stretched them out,
who spread out the earth and what comes from it,
who gives breath to the people on it
and spirit to those who walk in it:
6 “I am the Lord; I have called you in righteousness;
I will take you by the hand and keep you;
I will give you as a covenant for the people,
a light for the nations,
7 to open the eyes that are blind,
to bring out the prisoners from the dungeon,
from the prison those who sit in darkness.

_ What do we learn about God from verse 5?  Fill in the blank with multiple words.  The Lord is __________.
_ What are two precious gifts the Lord gives His people?
_ From verse 6, what three things does the Lord call Jesus (and you) to do?
_ How is he equipping Jesus (and you) to do them?
_ What do we know about the Lord’s desired relationship with each of us from the phrase, “I will take you by the hand and keep you.”
_ Who is doing the “heavy lifting” in this passage?  How many “I” statements do you find in this text?  
_ What is the blessing for obedience found in verse 7?  
_ Are your eyes opened to the wonder of God’s glory today (check out the eclipse today at 2:43 and be wowed!)?
_ Are you sitting in darkness?  Jesus is reaching His hand out to rescue you today. Let the promises of God reaching out to you give you hope and life to pass on to others!

+ HOW am I compelled to confess sin and respond with a simple step of action?  (Here are some thoughts to discuss in break-outs)
_ How does what I just learned about the power, providence, passion, and person of Jesus, encourage me, and then command me to walk in obedience to what he is calling me to do this week?
_ Have I been relying on my own abilities or the sovereignty of Him who holds His sheep in His hand?

+ WHO are you walking with to discover or grow in Jesus? (one on one or facilitating your own group), what is your next step, do you have the resources you need?