As a student, I have reached that point in the semester where I am beginning to feel stretched thin. I look at my growing list of assignments, the demands of my part-time job, the demands of my summer job, and everything else that seems to be nagging for a piece of my attention. Recently I have had to take some steps back and some deep breaths. I have had to remember why I came to seminary. And I came as an offering to God. Seminary was my “here I am Lord, here are my gifts and my passions. Take me where You will.” Saying yes to seminary became a moment of a living sacrifice. In this very season, I am living it is my desire to present my life as a living sacrifice. It is my desire to discern the will of God for my life. I found great comfort in the Scripture reading for today and I hope you do as well. Perhaps you are tired and unsure of why you are where you are. I invite you to join me in releasing yourself as a living sacrifice. Let’s do it as a community today and every day. - Mallory
(Take time to write down responses to these questions or discuss in your group)
- What have you been meditating on from yesterday’s sermon?
- What is weighing on your heart and mind today?
- How is the Lord impacting someone you are walking with (to help grow in or discover Jesus)
Lord, we come before You today in desperate need of Your help. We desire to be living sacrifices for You. Yet, we know we cannot do it on our own, we know we will fall short. Lord guide us and teach us. We are listening to what You have to say. We want to hear from You only Lord. We ask that You would transform our minds, that we would be able to always hear clearly from You. May we always walk in Your will. And when we deviate, let us feel Your grace as we return. Lord, You alone are good and we praise You. Amen.
DISCOVER [Romans 12:1-2]
I appeal to you therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship. 2 Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.
+ WHAT is this passage saying and what do we learn? (Use these questions below each portion of text to clarify the main point)
- What does it mean to present our bodies as living sacrifices?
- What is spiritual worship?
- How are we transformed by the renewal of our mind?
- What is meant by “testing”?
- What is meant by “the will of God”?
+ HOW am I compelled to confess sin and how does the gospel compel me to respond with a simple step of action/obedience? (Here are some thoughts to discuss in break-outs)
- How can I present myself as a living sacrifice? What do I need to say yes to? Say no to?
- How can I avoid being conformed to this world?
- Have I discerned the will of God in my own life? Where in the process am I? Do I need help and prayers?
+ WHO are you walking with to discover or grow in Jesus and what is your next step with them, how can we help?