September Sermon Discussion Questions

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Welcome Back to home group season! As you kick-off the new year I want to make sure that you have everything you need to get started.

  • Sermon discussion questions for September are available here, and in the documents section of this blog.
  • At times, the weekend messages aren’t part of a series and sermon discussion questions aren’t provided (such as Milestone Weekends and special topic). During those weeks, we suggest going through the Spiritual Self Assessment or another faith exercise together. Email me for handouts if you’re interested.
  • If you need suggestions for studies to go through or access to RightNow Media, please let me know.
  • If there is a conflict or other issue needing pastoral attention that arises in your home group, please contact me and I will arrange for a pastor to meet with you.

Lastly, if you attended Group Connect and have people to follow up with, please do that as soon as possible. Many of the attendees were very excited and eager to get started.

Thank you Group Leaders for all that you do!

News For Home Group Leaders

Next week, home group leaders Dutch and Sharon Bylsma are hosting an exciting event at Lighthouse and all home group leaders are invited! Missionaries Dave and Jen Bell will be sharing a testimony about their baby rescue and adoption ministry in Kenya. This special event will take place on Tuesday, September 12th from 7 to 9 p.m. in Room 321 in the new building. If you plan to attend, please send an email to shrnbylsm@yahoo.com.

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If your home group would like to jump right into a service project this year, Lighthouse can use your help! As you know, Lighthouse was blessed with a new building without undergoing much debt. To keep costs low, Lighthouse relies on volunteer cleaning teams to serve for just three hours on a Saturday morning. Since the opening of the new building, all of the cleaning shifts have been filled. However, after this month (September), there are very few volunteers scheduled to help. If your home group is willing to serve our church in this capacity, please sign up online at http://lighthousehome.org/cleaning-team.

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HOW TO LEAD WHEN YOU’RE NOT IN CHARGE

I know what you’re thinking. “Sarah, we’re Group Leaders. We ARE in charge.”

Good point.

But hear me out. As Group Leaders, we’re in charge to a certain extent, but really, we’re serving a ministry of Lighthouse, and ultimately, we’re serving Jesus.

So how do we lead well when we’re not in charge? I was given the privilege of reading an advance copy of the book How To Lead When You’re Not In Charge by Clay Scroggins, the lead pastor of North Point Community Church (yes, you’re reading that correctly, the same North Point as Andy Stanley, he’s Clay’s boss). It was both helpful and humorous, which is a great combination, especially when reading non-fiction.

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Here are three lessons I learned from the book that apply to all of us as Group Leaders:

  1. Lead Yourself. Truly great leaders, no matter how successful they become, maintain a learning curve as steep as when they first begin their careers. So make a plan. Know where you currently are. Have a vision for where you want to go. Develop the discipline and accountability to do what it takes to stay on track. And go all-in.
  2. Choose Positivity. Leaders who bring a trust-fueled, hope-filled, forward-thinking attitude every day can change any team dynamic. Positivity is a character trait that is developed over time, and more often than not, character is developed when things are difficult. Throughout history, God has put specific people into particular positions for definitive reasons. There is a confidence that comes from believing that God has you where he wants you.
  3. Effective Leaders Are Inclusive. The best way to be the type of leader people want to celebrate is to care deeply about the people you work with. Inclusive leaders don’t isolate themselves as authority figures, they include themselves in the discussion as influential innovators. Take a look at Jesus. He surrounded himself with disciples so he could prepare them to carry on the momentum of his ministry. He didn’t just send them out and hope for the best. He equipped them by telling them where to go, what to say, what to do, and even what to take (Matt 10:6-10). He was forcing them to live up to their potential. That’s what we’re called to do as leaders, and that’s something we can do whether we’re in charge or not.

I enjoyed this book so much and the more I thought, prayed and talked about it, the more I realized that this book would be helpful for many of the Group Leaders I’m honored to serve with. This Friday at Group Connect, leaders will receive a copy of this book as a gift from the Groups Ministry at Lighthouse. If you won’t be at Group Connect but are interested in the book, please send me an email at sarah@lighthousehome.org.

Lastly, for full disclosure purposes, in exchange for the advance copy of the book, I was asked to write a review (which you can read here). I chose to share lessons from the book on this blog, in addition to what I was asked, for the reasons mentioned above. I pray that it is as helpful to you as it has been to me.

For more information, visit ClayScroggins.com/Resources.

Book Review by Sarah Biggerstaff