NEXT STEPS

Stepping Out

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NOVEMBER 24

STEPPING OUT

Do you think of your life as an adventure? God created us to do life in relationship with Him, and that’s certainly a thrilling journey. But what does it really look like to do life with God and trust Him with our decisions, big and small? What will we experience when we step out on faith and have God meet us there?

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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DISCUSSION QUESTIONS

1. Did you like to go on adventures when you were a kid? What was one of your favorite things to do or one of your favorite places to go?

2. Have you ever felt like you needed to “clean yourself up” for God? Maybe you felt like you needed to get things in your life together and be “good enough” before you could come to God in prayer or attend church. How do/did you get past those feelings?

3. Read Hebrew 11:6. God isn’t looking for us to have it all together when we seek Him. He wants us to have faith. It pleases God when we put our faith in Him, as it shows our love for Him. What are some ways you can show God you have faith in Him?

4. God allows us to have free will, but His hope is that we will find our way to Him. When did you decide to follow God, and what led you to that decision. If you haven’t yet made a decision to follow Jesus, is it something you’re considering? Why?

5. We learned this week that loving God means also obeying Him. But obeying God’s commands can be difficult. How do you overcome temptations that seem plague you? How has God helped you avoid temptations in the past, and how has following God’s commands led to positive outcomes in your life?

6. Read Psalm 37:4-6 and Jeremiah 17:9-10. When we’re unsure about a decision, and there’s no clear command from God on the matter, we learned that we can ask God to guide us and aim to do what would please God. But we also know that our own hearts can deceive us. How do you help distinguish between your own desires and the desires of God?

7. Read Romans 8:28. This week, reflect on how your decisions can become less stressful/terrifying and more like an adventure. When we move forward in faith and seek to obey and please God, God honors that. How will you begin to seek God in your daily decisions, no matter how big or small? What steps can you take to live a life of true faith?

KEY SCRIPTURES

Hebrews 11:6 – And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him.

Psalm 37:4-6 – Delight yourself in the Lord; and He will give you the desires of your heart. Commit your way to the Lord, trust also in Him, and He will do it.

Jeremiah 17:9-10 – The heart is deceitful above all things and beyond cure. Who can understand it? “I the Lord search the heart and examine the mind, to reward each person according to their conduct, according to what their deeds deserve.”

Romans 8:28 – And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.

DIGGING DEEPER

As you look to dig deeper into the topics of this week’s message, consider checking out the Trust God outcome in Gateway’s Spiritual Growth Path. Here’s an excerpt:

Common perception is that a follower of Christ is someone who believes in the existence of God and believes in the deity of Christ. Simply believe that God exists and that He sent His son, and you are considered a Christ-follower. Such thinking, though, is flawed. It misses the critical distinction between belief and trust. A person might believe an airplane can fly but not be willing to trust in the airplane by actually boarding it and experiencing flight. Scripture not only calls us to a belief in the existence of God, but we are exhorted to entrust our lives and well-being to God through Christ. James wrote, “You believe there is one God. Good! Even the demons believe that—and shudder” (James 2:29). Or put another way, even enemies of God believe God exists and that he sent his son. Abraham was called a friend of God, not because he believed God exists, but because he entrusted his life to God. Humanity looks to many things other than God for security, purpose, and well-being, effectively making these things their god. Most common, possibly, is an unbridled trust in money. Money is important and plays a critical role in our lives, but we understand without explanation when Scripture commands those who are rich to “not put their hope in wealth, which is so uncertain, but to put their hope in God” (1 Timothy 6:17). There are many things we can trust in with the kind of ultimate trust that should only be put in God: social status, vocational advancement, beauty, marriage, family, politics, and more. These, and others, are often both good and necessary aspects of life, but we make a critical distinction when we internalize the truth that they make lousy gods of ultimate trust. David, the warrior and king, knew this distinction well when he wrote, “Some trust in chariots and some in horses, but we trust in the name of the Lord our God” (Psalm 20:7).

To complete this outcome in its entirety, go to gatewaychurch.com/spiritual_outcomes/trust-god

SPIRITUAL OUTCOMES— gatewaychurch.com/spiritual_outcomes/trust-god