Note to leaders
This week we are launching what’s going to be a beautiful 21 days of serving. Our dream is to display 5,000 radical acts of compassion, showing our communities what radical love looks like. Encourage your group with Gene’s statement: “Sometimes the moment you step out of your comfort zone is the moment you allow God to work through you.”
Allow time after your discussion to brainstorm various ways your group members can serve this week, individually or together.
I know It When I See It
Love and Kindness
Weekend in review
Over the next few weeks we’re going to look at the kind of character traits the Holy Spirit wants to produce in all of us: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, gentleness, goodness, faithfulness, and self-control. When these traits are visible and tangible in our lives, people stand back and say, “Oh, so THAT’S what it looks like.”
Begin with some conversation, checking in on how people are doing. You can talk about whatever you’d like, but here is a potential question to get the conversation going.
- Who in your life best models lovingkindness or love in action?
Read Galatians 5:22-23. Which qualities come more comfortably to you? Which are more of a challenge?
- Read 1 Corinthians 13:13 and 14:1. Love is central. Greats acts of service or faith have little impact without love. Has your love grown bigger over the past ten years? What do you think people who know you best would say?
- Read 1 Corinthians 13:1-4. Gene shared the quote, “Kindness is the language the deaf can hear, and the blind can see.” Share a time someone overwhelmed you with kindness.
- Who do you know who is hurting because of the pandemic? What is something you could do to support or encourage them?
- What are tangible ways during Eastside’s 21 Days of Serving that we can express kindness in our daily lives?
- Read Galatians 5:16-17. Each of us has this inner struggle between flesh and spirit. Gene said that God CONVICTS, EMPOWERS, and WAITS for us to respond. Share a time you experienced this struggle and felt the conviction of God in your life. How did it change you?
- In Philippians 2:3 we have the great love-meter test. How well do you do? Do you tend to consider others better than yourself?
During each week of the 21 Days of Serving, we will focus on a different theme. We are boldly asking you and/or your group to pick one thing to do each week. You can do it together or individually.
Our focus for the first week is on helping those who have been impacted by COVID.
You can learn more and get ideas for things your group can do at eastside.com/21days.
- Look up the suggestions for week one and spend time brainstorming how you will help someone who has been impacted by COVID this week.
- Gene challenged us to put our love into action with kindness in three specific ways:
1. Express lovingkindness spontaneously. Seize the moment. Pay attention to spontaneous promptings of the Holy Spirit to be kind.
2. Express lovingkindness sensitively. The Holy Spirit is saying to us, Open your eyes. There are people who need lovingkindness emotionally, physically, spiritually in their soul. They’re in your church. In your neighborhood. In your family.
3. Express lovingkindness sacrificially. The goal of 21 Days of Serving is to help us open our eyes, grow our hearts, and be sensitive to needs right in our own communities.
- Share what you are most excited about as we enter 21 Days of Serving. Who can you invite to join you?
Wrap up & prayer
Share prayer requests and spend time praying for each other. Pray each of you would put your love in action this week and for you to see the everyday ways we can express love and kindness.
Father in heaven, thank you for your gracious kindness. Thank you for sensitively, spontaneously, and sacrificially responding to our need and giving the ultimate gift, your only son for us. There’s not a parent among us who could imagine giving one of our children like that. Thanks for being so kind. Now I pray that we would not just be hearers of your words but doers in our homes, neighborhoods, schools, and workplaces. May we be men and women known for extraordinary acts of lovingkindness to those struggling physically, financially, spiritually, and emotionally. Empower us by your Spirit. In Jesus’ name. Amen.