Dr. E. Dale Locke

Series: Easy Street

Week 4: Living the Dream

1. Icebreaker Question:  If you’re serving in some area at our church, tell why you do it and how it impacts you when you serve. 

2. Continue to memorize our theme verse for this sermon series:  John 10:10: “The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.”

3. The world defines “full” as obtaining more – more money, more possessions, more status, a more attractive outward image.  How has this sermon series changed your understanding of what Jesus promised when He said that His followers would have a “full” life?

4. Read John 21:1-15:
Afterward Jesus appeared again to his disciples, by the Sea of Galilee.  It happened this way: 2 Simon Peter, Thomas (also known as Didymus, Nathanael from Cana in Galilee, the sons of Zebedee, and two other disciples were together. 3 “I’m going out to fish,” Simon Peter told them, and they said, “We’ll go with you.” So they went out and got into the boat, but that night they caught nothing.
4 Early in the morning, Jesus stood on the shore, but the disciples did not realize that it was Jesus.
5 He called out to them, “Friends, haven’t you any fish?”
“No,” they answered.
6 He said, “Throw your net on the right side of the boat and you will find some.” When they did, they were unable to haul the net in because of the large number of fish.
7 Then the disciple whom Jesus loved said to Peter, “It is the Lord!” As soon as Simon Peter heard him say, “It is the Lord,” he wrapped his outer garment around him (for he had taken it off) and jumped into the water. 8 The other disciples followed in the boat, towing the net full of fish, for they were not far from shore, about a hundred yards.  9 When they landed, they saw a fire of burning coals there with fish on it, and some bread.
10 Jesus said to them, “Bring some of the fish you have just caught.” 11 So Simon Peter climbed back into the boat and dragged the net ashore. It was full of large fish, 153, but even with so many the net was not torn. 12 Jesus said to them, “Come and have breakfast.” None of the disciples dared ask him, “Who are you?” They knew it was the Lord. 13 Jesus came, took the bread and gave it to them, and did the same with the fish. 14 This was now the third time Jesus appeared to his disciples after he was raised from the dead.  15 When they had finished eating, Jesus said to Simon Peter, “Simon son of John, do you love me more than these?”
“Yes, Lord,” he said, “you know that I love you.”
Jesus said, “Feed my lambs.”
What questions or comments do you have when you read this passage?

5. Have you ever wondered what Jesus meant when he said to Peter, “Do you love me more than these?”  Pastor Dale said that Jesus was probably asking whether Peter loved him more than the fish.  What are the implications of this question for Peter?

6. What does it mean for Jesus to be in first position in your life?  How might your life look different if you based all you do on the foundation of loving Jesus first and foremost?

The Truest Measure of a Full Life is to Use it for a Purpose Greater than Yourself:

7. Jesus’ love for Peter had never changed, but now Jesus invited Peter to show his love for Jesus by doing something greater than himself.  Share about a time when you were asked to do something greater than you felt you could do.

Start Where You Are

8. You may feel unqualified to serve God, or even disqualified, because of things you’ve done.  But you can start where you are and begin to serve Jesus.  What are some ways that even a new believer could serve at Community of Hope?

Use What You Have

9. In our Partnership Class, we offer a tool that helps people discover their gifts and strengths.  If you’ve never done our SHAPE Profile, you can find it here:  https://communityofhope.church/partnership-class/shape/

10. What are some of your signature strengths?  How might you use those to serve the Lord?

11. How might a weakness or past failure actually make a person more effective in some area of ministry than they would be if they didn’t have that in their life?

12. Read 1 Peter 4:10-11 and share what you notice in this passage: 
Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God’s grace in its various forms. If anyone speaks, they should do so as one who speaks the very words of God. If anyone serves, they should do so with the strength God provides, so that in all things God may be praised through Jesus Christ. To him be the glory and the power for ever and ever. Amen.

Do What You Can

13.  If Community of Hope didn’t exist, would it matter to our community?  Would they notice if we were gone?  Why is this an important question to ask?  Share why you answered the way you did.

14. Read Ephesians 2:10 and share what you notice in this passage:
For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.”

What are the implications of this verse?

15.  In Acts 13:36, it says of King David “Now when David had served God’s purpose in his own generation, he fell asleep; he was buried with his ancestors and his body decayed”.

What does it mean to “serve God’s purpose in your own generation”? 

16.  Lewis Smedes wrote in his book, The Art of Forgiving, “I bought a brand-new date book yesterday, the kind I use every year.  Spiral bound, black imitation leaver covers wrapped around pages and pages of blank boxes.  Every square has a number to tell me which day of the month I’m in at the moment,.  Every square is a frame for one episode of my life.  Before I’m through with the book, I will fill the squares with classes I teach, people with whom I ate lunch, everlasting committee meetings I sit through, and these are only the things I cannot afford to forget.  I fill the squares too with things I do not write down to remember thousands of cups of coffee, some lovemaking with my wife, some praying and I hope gestures of help to my neighbors,  Whatever I do, it has to fit inside one of those squares on my date book,  I live one square at a time.  The four lines that make up the box are the walls of time that organize my life.  Each box has an invisible door that leads to the next square.  As if by silent stroke, the door opens and I am pulled through, as if by magnet, sucked into the next square in line.  There I will again fill the time frame that seals me – fill it with busyness, just as I did the square before.        As I get older, the squares seem to get smaller.  One day I will walk into s square that has no door.  There will be no mysterious opening and now walking into an adjoining square.  One of the squares will be terminal.  I just don’t know which square it will be.” 

What comes to your mind when you hear this?

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