Hey Small Group Leaders!
We’re finishing up our What’s The Catch series this week by helping students discover that God doesn’t just want them to avoid temptation and for no reason. He wants them to avoid temptation because He has something better in mind for them. We’re praying for you!
WEEK TWO SUMMARY: June 24
When it comes to temptation, sometimes knowing something’s wrong or unwise just isn’t enough reason to say no. This week, we’ll discover that, when we say no in the face of temptation, we’re really saying yes to what God promises us later.
God wants to give you a yes that makes it possible to say no.
THE GOAL OF SMALL GROUP
To help students understand that God doesn’t just want them to avoid temptation and live well-behaved lives. He wants them to live full, abundant lives!
SCRIPTURE REFERENCES & SMALL GROUP QUESTIONS
When tempted, no one should say, “God is tempting me.” For God cannot be tempted by evil, nor does he tempt anyone; but each person is tempted when they are dragged away by their own evil desire and enticed. Then, after desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, gives birth to death. Don’t be deceived, my dear brothers and sisters. Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows (James 1:13-17 NIV).
1.What makes temptation difficult to talk about?
2.Without naming names, how have you seen giving in to temptation lead to feeling miserable?
3.In that same vein, how have you seen saying yes to temptation once lead to a monster problem later?
4.When God says no, it’s because He wants something good FOR you, not because He wants to keep something good FROM you. How is that different from the way we typically think about God? (Leaders, the goal of this is for students to see that God wants an abundant life for them, not just a life where they do right and don’t mess up.)
5.What’s one area where you need some help resisting temptation?
6.What are some positive things you can say “yes” to when you feel tempted in that area? (Leaders, your students don’t have to give “churchy” answers. This is literally to push them toward thinking of ANY positive replacements.)
Don’t keep looking at my sins. Remove the stain of my guilt. Create in me a clean heart, O God. Renew a loyal spirit within me (Psalm 51:9-10 NLT).
David was no stranger to the shame, fear, and regret that comes after giving in to temptation. He knew all too well the weight of guilt that threatened to keep him from ever getting up and going on with his life. In fact, it was under this very weight that he wrote Psalm 51.
And just as David’s prayers to God in that Psalm renewed and restored him after temptation, they can for us as well. This can become the prayer both for our own lives and the lives of our students. When we give in to temptation, we can follow David’s model in these two simple verses: Confession of sins, forgiveness from God, and freedom to walk forward with a fresh and hopeful spirit.
This week, memorize this verse. Let it sit in your heart and mind, ready for when you find yourself in the wake of giving into temptation. Put David’s example to work in your own life. And share it with your students. Remember that when your students come to you with their own struggles, one of the best things you can offer them is what God offered David within this prayer: the opportunity to confess, find forgiveness, and walk forward on a new path with a new plan.
“The voice of sin is loud, but the voice of forgiveness is louder.” –Dwight L. Moody