WARM UP: What is your favorite part about camping? Least favorite? If you could be curled up in front of a fire, where would it be?
What do you need to do to let a fire go out?Nothing. It’s pretty simple. Just leave it alone and no fire, no matter how well fueled, will continue to burn without prodding and poking here and there. That is how easy it is to let things slip away even when our intentions are good. The same thing is true when it comes to our spiritual lives.
On our own, we are totally incapable of remaining faithful to anyone or anything – not even ourselves. The Holy Spirit is God’s gift of himself to us. Just as all fire needs oxygen, so the flames of our spiritual passion cannot be kept going without the breath of the Holy Spirit.
Bible Study: Rev. 3:7-13
1. What issue is the church in Philadelphia struggling with? Is the issue real or imagined?
2. What is the significance of Jesus’ message about opened and closed doors?
3. Reading between the lines, why haven’t they taken advantage of the open door God has placed in front of them?
4. What promises does Jesus make to this congregation? What words of warning does he give as well?
5. If you had been a church member, would you have found Jesus’ message encouraging or intimidating? Have you ever felt “not up to the task”?
6. Right now, do you feel that you have more “open doors” or “closed doors” in front of you? Why?
7. What open door do you need to walk through right now? What’s been holding you back?
From the Message (2 Tim. 1:1-7): Maybe Timothy was tired. Maybe he’s battle weary. Maybe he feels alone but if something isn’t done quickly, things might not end well.Timothy’s spiritual fire and passion is in danger of going out.
· Pastor Steve asked, “Have you ever let your passion for someone or something fade?”Did you ever regain it or was it lost forever?
When Timothy was called into ministry, Paul warned him: “Do not neglectthe spiritual gift you received.” 1 Tim. 4:14 (NLT)
· What happens when something or someone has been neglected over time? Can the same thing happen when it comes to the spiritual gifts God has given us? Why or why not?
· This morning Pastor Steve asked, “What hinders the flow of the Holy Spirit in our lives?” Name some of the things that you feel hinder the work of the Spirit in our lives: ________________, ___________________, ____________________,
· Read Eph. 4:30 (MSG).What does it mean to grieve the Holy Spirit?
Pastor Steve said, “Spiritual gifts are not given fully developed; they need to be strengthened and matured through use. They are not static gifts wrapped in a package we can process. The individual to whom they are given must exercise them.”
· What happens to a muscle if you quit using or exercising it? What spiritual gifts have you been given for ministry? Are you using them?
· What struck you the most from this morning’s message? Why that?
· What challenged you the most? What changes do you plan on making as a result?
MESSAGE POWER POINTS:
YOU ARE GIFTED BY GOD:1 Cor. 12:7
DO NOT NEGLECT WHAT GOD HAS GIVEN.1 Tim. 4:14
GOD HAS GIVEN YOU A SPIRIT OF LOVE, POWER, & SELF CONTROL.1 Tim. 1:7 (NIV)
DON’T GRIEVE THE HOLY SPIRIT BY FAILING TO USE WHAT HE’S GIVEN YOU… Eph. 4:30 (MSG)
KEEP IT. GUARD IT. FEED IT: 1 TIM. 1:13-14 (NLT)
USE IT or LOSE IT!Matt. 25:29 (NLT)