December 1: No Need to Fear
1. Recall a time when you felt anxious or unable to sleep before an event. What did you do? How did you find peace?
2. Which scripture passages encourage you the most when you are worried or anxious?
3. In what ways do you reach out to God in times of anxiety? How do your prayers, devotional times, and spiritual disciplines in times of uncertainty differ from these practices in times of peace?
4. Think of someone in your life who is going through a time of uncertainty. How can you encourage them? Name some ways you can show them friendship and God’s love and care.
5. When have you come across a Bible passage that gave you exactly what you needed during a difficult time? What did this teach you about God’s presence and provision?
December 8: No Longer Afraid
1. Why do you think we sometimes feel afraid in the dark but safe in the light? Where do you turn for comfort and safety when you are afraid?
2. Imagine the world without literal light. Now imagine the world without spiritual light. Which one is more frightening to you? What do these images teach you about the importance of light in the world?
3. How does the story of Jesus’ birth encourage you during frightening times? What other stories of God’s power and light encourage you when you are afraid?
4. What prayers and spiritual practices help you to remember and appreciate God’s light throughout the Christmas season? What scripture passages are your favorites this time of year?
5. Name some specific ways that you can spread God’s light of love this week. In what ways will you be intentional about shining brightly in the lives of others?
December 15: “Trapped” in the Airport
1. When have you been upset about a situation, only to have your perspective changed by someone? How did your new attitude change how you felt about your situation?
2. When you feel stressed, do you find it difficult to remain focused on God? What brings your focus back to God?
3. Name some scripture passages that speak about the importance of remaining open to serving God in all circumstances. Which of these passages is most encouraging for you?
4. When have you found an unexpected opportunity to serve God and others? What was your experience? How was your faith enriched by your service?
5. How do your spiritual mentors help you to find ways to serve God? How does your church community encourage you to serve?
December 22: Different Kind of Miracle
1. What helps you to remain positive and joyful about what God is doing in your life when you do not receive the outcome that you had hoped for? What scripture passages give you the most encouragement about God’s plan for your life?
2. When have you waited for a miracle that did not come? How did this affect your trust and faith in God? What encouraging words would you offer someone waiting for a miracle?
3. What miracle of acceptance and faith can you thank God for today? What would help you to take more notice of God’s miracles each day?
4. How are you encouraged to know that God will never leave you? How does this knowledge strengthen your faith?
5. As you and your faith community pray for miracles, how can you also encourage acceptance and faith regardless of the outcomes? How will you remind one another of the unexpected and daily miracles you encounter?
December 29: Change the World
1. Recall a time when you felt the presence of God in a new and different way. How did that experience change your relationship with God? How did the experience change you?
2. Have you ever wished that God would simply fix your problems rather than change you? Why? What helps you to accept and appreciate the ways God changes you, even if God does not miraculously change your circumstances?
3. When is it easiest for you to follow Christ’s teachings? When is it hardest? Where do you find strength to follow Christ even when it is difficult?
4. What does it mean to you to be transformed by God? How does transformation allow us to better serve God and others? For what transformations in your life are you most grateful?
5. What changes do you think we would see in the world if we all became more Christlike? How can you participate in making this a reality? Name some specific steps you will take to become more Christlike today.
I join many of those who will pray for you as you seek to discern what you are called to be at this moment. May God grant you the courage to fulfill that calling. May we all open our eyes and see the misery, open our ears and hear the cries of God’s people, and, like God through the Lord Jesus Christ, be incarnate amongst them.”
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