Small Group Questions: Who Do You Think We Are? Ephesians 6:5-9

pursue

ICEBREAKER

Change Game: Cross Your Arms
Duration: 5 minutes
Number of participants: unlimited
Description/Process: Ask the group to “cross their arms.” My operational definition of “crossed” is folding their arms together, as if they were bored or waiting for something. Once they have completed this task, ask them to “fold their arms the other way,” reverse of what they just performed. I guarantee that 90 percent of the group will struggle with it.

Discuss after the activity

  • How did it feel when you were asked to cross your arms the other way?
  • Did it come naturally or did you have to stop and think about it?
  • Were you comfortable with doing this differently?
  • What would you need to do to permanently change the way you cross your arms now?
  • On a scale of 1 to 10 what is your resistance to change at the moment? As you think about yourself in the room, how would you describe the “peer pressure” around you?

Facilitator Notes
When people cross their arms, they do so naturally, without even thinking about it. When they are asked to fold them the other way, they for the most part, stop, refold their arms again and then try to figure out which arm was on top, which arm moves first and so on. Try this yourself and see. Encourage participants to consider and share their own personal emotions related to making changes.

Prayer
Spend some time praying for each other out of your experience in the game.  Ask the Spirit to help each person to lower any internal resistance towards what the Lord may want to speak to you about through your engagement in the Word and as a group together.

READ
Have someone read Ephesians 6:5-9 and another person read Galatians 5.

DISCUSSION

1.  Culture Creation

Discuss: Fight culture or create culture?  What do you think is the more effective way to influence and ultimately change culture?

What are the elements of the Christian life that foster the creation of culture?

2.  Jesus Changes Everything

Read: Philippians 2:1-17

Explain: Tania described the confronting scenario that some of the new believers in Ephesus may have faced as slaves in non-Christian households.

Ask: Consider these types of challenges in the world and compare them to the example of Christ.  What thoughts and reactions or responses arise in you?

3.  Language Creates Culture

Ask:  What is your attitude towards work?

Discuss:

  • How do you talk about your employer or employees?
  • How do you talk about the unemployed, unemployable or retirees?
  • How do you treat people at the checkout or collecting rubbish or doing menial things?  Do you treat or see these people differently to people in powerful roles?
  • What might need to change within you as an employer or employee, retiree or student?  How would these changes be reflected in the way you speak about yourself and others?

Ask:  What is your attitude towards work in your household/neighbourhood?

Discuss:

  • What might change within you/within your household or neighbourhood as you pay attention to the way you speak about the place where you live?
  • How can you serve others differently as a result of reflecting on the example of Jesus?

Ask:  What is your attitude towards work within the household of faith (the church)?

Discuss:

  • Tania defined slavery as: a condition of forced labour without proper remuneration or appreciation.
  • Christian leaders not taking volunteerism for granted?
  • Christian people not taking church programs and services for granted?
  • Serving one another in love?
  • The church as a living reflection of Christian community?  Household of faith?

Ask:  What is your attitude to work in the world?

Discuss:

  • How often do you think about slavery in our world?
  • 45.8 million people are enslaved (2016 stats).  58% of these people are predominantly women and children in countries like India, Pakistan, China, Bangladesh and Uzbekistan.
  • What can be done about human trafficking?
  • Clothes made in India or China? Is it right to buy them, is it wrong to stop buying them?

Ask: What is your attitude to yourself as a worker?

Discuss:

  • How do you speak about yourself (internal or external language)?
  • Slave to sin with no hope of freedom?
  • Slave for the cause of Christ … culture creating, light-shining, bondservant of Christ?

Benediction

You are called to go out into the world in peace, have courage and hold to God’s love for you. Serve the weak, help those that suffer, return no one evil for evil – but honour everyone that you meet. Love the Lord rejoicing in the power of the Holy Spirit, which is God’s special gift to each one of us. And may the love of God, the grace of Jesus and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you, and abide in you all week.

Prayer
You may choose to close with the benediction or you may like to close by praying for each other, praying for those in slavery or praying for wisdom in applying these verses.

God Bless.

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