Next Steps Archives

Just the Two of Us

NOVEMBER 18

JUST THE TWO OF US

Encounters with Jesus usually lead to distinct responses, whether positive reactions or negative reactions on our part. But with the knowledge that Jesus is a God that fully sees us and still offers love and grace, even through the difficulties of vulnerability, it is hard to ignore an encounter with Him. How will you respond to God, knowing that He sees you and has compassion for who you are and all you go through?

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On the Road Again

NOVEMBER 11

ON THE ROAD AGAIN

In our highly divided political climate, many of us have heard that we must vote red, or we must go blue, to be Christian. We tend to attack those who do not think like us and support our values, and thus have reduced God to a set of behaviors and policies. In contrast, what does it really mean to not only know God, but to experience Him on a deep, relational level?

Work through the following questions and Scriptures on your own, and get together with your running partner, life group, or friends and family to talk through what you are learning.

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A Day At The Beach

NOVEMBER 2

A DAY AT THE BEACH

What would it be like to have a life-changing encounter with Jesus? This sort of brush with greatness led to great things for people like Simon Peter of the Bible. And for each of us, although possibly challenging, having Jesus step into our ordinary lives could be the best experience we’ve ever had.

Work through the following questions and Scriptures on your own, and get together with your running partner, life group, or friends and family to talk through what you are learning.

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Love Shares

OCTOBER 28

LOVE SHARES

Our stories create a picture for others to see how God enters our lives and brings healing, meaning, and connection, rather than the rules and condemnation we sometimes associate with Him. But how do we face down our fears of others’ reactions and explain how God has freed and empowered us?

Work through the following questions and Scriptures on your own, and get together with your running partner, life group, or friends and family to talk through what you are learning.

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Love Serves

OCTOBER 21

LOVE SERVES

To love others well means to serve them. But oftentimes, our own agendas and skewed priorities can get in the way of our putting others first and serving them with a happy and humble heart. What will it take for us to serve others like Jesus did?

Work through the following questions and Scriptures on your own, and get together with your running partner, life group, or friends and family to talk through what you are learning.

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Love Engages

OCTOBER 14

LOVE ENGAGES

God’s greatest commandments were to love God with all our heart and to love our neighbors as we love ourselves. That kind of selfless love for others is a love that engages—one that meets others where they are and is intentional. But what might loving our neighbors, co-workers, and friends in this way really look like day-to-day?

Work through the following questions and Scriptures on your own, and get together with your running partner, life group, or friends and family to talk through what you are learning.

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Love Listens

OCTOBER 7

LOVE LISTENS

It is often much easier to talk than to listen. Listening actively and engaging in other-centered communication can be a real challenge. However, Jesus showed us that listening is a key aspect to making people feel truly valued and loving them well. How could listening help you better love and care for the people around you?

Work through the following questions and Scriptures on your own, and get together with your running partner, life group, or friends and family to talk through what you are learning.

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Love Cares

SEPTEMBER 30

LOVE CARES

There are people we encounter everyday, at work, in our neighborhoods, or even in our own home, that may seem happy or content. But many of the people around us suffer with a deep feeling of loneliness—a lack of connection that isn’t always readily detectable from the outside. God demonstrated a love that cared about such connections, and He wants us to continue to intentionally demonstrate that love. How can you show you truly care about those around you?

Work through the following questions and Scriptures on your own, and get together with your running partner, life group, or friends and family to talk through what you are learning.

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Avoid Conflict

SEPTEMBER 16

AVOID CONFLICT

Conflict is an inevitable part of most any relationship. But often what brings about the conflict or what makes it worse is our tendency to easily see the wrongdoing of others and be blinded to our own. Unhealthy conflict and being overly critical of others can kill a relationship in a hurry. Having created each of us for human connection, does God also offer us a realistic way to save our relationships when we’ve wounded each other?

Work through the following questions and Scriptures on your own, and get together with your running partner, life group, or friends and family to talk through what you are learning.

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Don’t Commit

SEPTEMBER 9

DON’T COMMIT

Relationships can involve a lot of risk. And for some of us, we’re not quite sure the risk is worth the reward. Couple our fear of vulnerability with society’s constant “keep it casual” messaging, and we end up with lots of people avoiding commitment. But could lack of commitment be even more risky than the alternative? What do God and relationship experts say about making our relational risks worthwhile?

Work through the following questions and Scriptures on your own, and get together with your running partner, life group, or friends and family to talk through what you are learning.

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