James - An eye to the future
Housegroup Leaders Materials
Sermon: 8th June 2008
Text: James 5:1-12
“The Lord is full of compassion and mercy” James 5:11
We are to wait patiently for the Lord to return as Judge.
- What is the longest you have had to wait for something?
- Have you ever had a surprise party planned for you? What did you expect and was your expectation met?
- Invite people to be quiet, explain that someone is going to read from Isaiah, but invite them to listen prayerfully. Read Isaiah 40 slowly. (or just from vs18-end) Close by waiting on God. You might like to have some music in the background.
- Read James 5:1-12
- According to James we are suppose to be waiting for the "Lord's coming", what do you expect that will be like?
- What does it mean to "stand firm" in the context of farming?
- How might the impatient farmer behave and what would he lose as a result?
- Patience is what James calls us to, what are the dangers along the way?
Word (heart questions)
- The prophets suffered because they saw and spoke of things that others could not see. What suffering do you face?
- Following on, in the face of suffering of not yet seeing all that God has promised, how are you tempted to change your expectations of God? (You might want to reflect on the story of Job, he refused to change his image of God)
- The Lord who is Judge is also full of compassion and mercy, how do you make sense of this tension?
- We like the prophets are suppose be declaring a future that others can't see. (Heb 11:1) Where have you allowed this image of our future hope to become dulled?
- If you have lost sight of "hope" then what have you taken on in its place?
- Where in your life of faith do you need to have more patience with the ways of God?
- Take time to pray for one another and the communities in which you live. That People around you would catch your hope.
NB: These notes are suggestions, not a text for your session, please be creative. Ensure you listen to God and allow him to lead you. The items in italics are extra materials, use where appropriate.