SouledOut/Madhouse Link Up

THE BIG IDEA:  We need to choose the better story, we are made righteous by Jesus, he gives us his spirit to practice self-control in the present, so that in the life to come we do not fear judgment.      

GAME:

Stand opposite each other about 1ft apart. The aim is for you to make the person opposite you flinch by making sudden movements without touching them. Those who are ‘on’ must try and make the others flinch, however slightly, but they must not lay a finger on them or throw anything at them which physically touches them.

Last one not to flinch is the winner. Call it a draw if more than one person is good at this.
If you cannot intimidate them, try making them laugh.

The Point: Just for fun with a focus on self-control.

Watch this clip from Thor, at the beginning of the movie Thor, Thor is the oldest son of Odin and the future king. The ice giants have attacked, and Thor takes it on himself to avenge his people.  He chooses to fight rather than seek peace which his father as arranged. Thor breaks the peace because one of the ice giants provokes him and calls him a chicken not quite but you what I mean.

Discuss:

  1. How does Thor respond to his father’s rebuke and what does that say about him?
  • Impatient, lacking self-control, doesn’t respect his father, think he knows better?
  1. Why does Odin punish him?
  • To teach him to a better leader, to practice self-control, to think of other not just himself.
  1. What are the consequences of his actions and how is this similar to us when we think about how we behave towards God?
  • Thor wants to be King but abuses the power his father gave him; he chose his way not his fathers and cursed his people. Thor is banished from his father presence and is cursed. Likewise, Adam in Genesis 3 chooses his own path and rejects Gods way and is banished from the garden of Eden and cursed by sin. We also choose are own path and don’t choose God’s good way and need to learn to trust that our father knows better and that he has told us how to live through the Fruit of the Spirit.

Watch: This clip about the marshmallow test, and can children be self-controlled and not eat one marshmallow and so gain another one.

Discuss:

  1. What child reaction would be most like there at that age?
  2. Could you resist or would just eat it like the little girl? What treat can you not resist?
  3. Why is it so hard to wait, or be self-controlled?

Romans 7:19 “For I do not do the good I want to do, but the evil I do not want to do – this I keep doing.” It is always easier to give in than resist that is why we need God to grow self-controlled in us through his Holy Spirit.

WORD – SELF CONTROL

Word
Read Titus chapter 2:1-15
You, however, must teach what is appropriate to sound doctrine. Teach the older men to be temperate, worthy of respect, self-controlled, and sound in faith, in love and in endurance.
Likewise, teach the older women to be reverent in the way they live, not to be slanderers or addicted to much wine, but to teach what is good. Then they can urge the younger women to love their husbands and children, to be self-controlled and pure, to be busy at home, to be kind, and to be subject to their husbands, so that no one will malign the word of God.
Similarly, encourage the young men to be self-controlled. In everything set them an example by doing what is good. In your teaching show integrity, seriousness and soundness of speech that cannot be condemned, so that those who oppose you may be ashamed because they have nothing bad to say about us.
Teach slaves to be subject to their masters in everything, to try to please them, not to talk back to them, 10 and not to steal from them, but to show that they can be fully trusted, so that in every way they will make the teaching about God our Saviour attractive.
11 For the grace of God has appeared that offers salvation to all people. 12 It teaches us to say “No” to ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright and godly lives in this present age, 13 while we wait for the blessed hope—the appearing of the glory of our great God and Saviour, Jesus Christ, 14 who gave himself for us to redeem us from all wickedness and to purify for himself a people that are his very own, eager to do what is good.
15 These, then, are the things you should teach. Encourage and rebuke with all authority. Do not let anyone despise you.
Say: Paul now turn to teach the people about being self-controlled what does teach each group, he give them something to resist or be self-controlled and something to do.

  1. What are they for each group?
To be self-controlledSomething to do
Older MenTemperate or being restrained, not angrySelf-controlled, worthy of respect, sound in faith, love and endurance
Older WomenDo not gossip or get drunkReverent or showing people respect
Younger womenTo not be impure
  1. ove their families, to be kind, respectful
Young menDo not be a bad example in and speech, action, or behaviour.Integrity, seriousness, soundness of speech
Slaves/EmployeesDon’t talk back, don’t stealMake how they live attractive for the gospel and try to please their boss.

 

  1. What are the consequences of giving into to each of those areas in the passage?
  2. Why does Paul urge us each to be self-controlled and in which of those areas would you struggle with?
  • Because each of those things whether sharing some juicy gossip hurts someone else, getting drunk leads to us not being able to control what we do causing fights and injuries either to yourself or someone else. Paul gives us an encouragement to choose the better path or story rather the path that leads destruction or guilt and shame.  Each path lead either to a negative or positive story.  God want us to choose the better story to say No, rather than giving into worldly passions.
  1. Like the Marshmallow video, we are called delay gratification or not giving into certain desires and await a greater reward, why is that hard?
  • We like to feel good now, we are not good at waiting, we can see what is here and now and we can’t see what we will get in heaven, so we get impatient and think this is world is as good as it gets. Sin draws us in thinking we can just smell it or lick it and not eat it, but then when you smell it smells good, you lick it and it taste good and you just want more and cannot resist.
  1. What does Jesus do for us in verse 14?
  • He redeems us from all wickedness and purify us as his people so that we are eager do good like him.
  1. Why is the word eager important in the passage in terms of doing good?
  • It shows that we are thankful for what Jesus has done, it is the better story as we do it to please Jesus and we feel good when we do good which is an added benefit.  If we just feel that we will be constantly miserable in this life we may give up, but it is not just good in future, it is also good here and now.

WELFARE

Think.
Brainstorm some examples of situations which tend to make the young people lose their self-control.
Now take one or two of the situations and to come up with ideas not to solve the problem but to help the person keep their cool during the problem.
Remind them of this saying, ‘Not freedom from the storm but peace within it.’

The Point: To offer practical support in keeping self-control.

  1. What action can you take from the passage that help you practice self-control?
  2. What areas do you struggle with, now take time to pray for God’s strength and spirit to help you with those?
  3. Take time to pray for people in our community who need self-control through this Covid 19 lock in?
  4. Take time to thank God for his self-giving in Jesus, ask for God’s spirit to give you the strength to choose the best and not the bad, to share his passion for giving to others and the blessed hope that one day you will stand before Jesus who will call you good and faithful servant.

Listen to the following songs and enjoy. The first one I heard on sabbatical and when I heard Big Daddy Weave in concert and is such a great song of hope that Jesus offers to all of us.

Second, we have a song from Casting Crows called Nobody, about the power of sharing the gospel with others.