Friday, July 03, 2009

Life moves pretty fast. If you don't stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it.

We continue with our series based on The 10 Dumbest Things Christians Do, by Mark Atteberry. The following are some notes from my Sunday school lesson at Providence Church.

DUMB MOVE #7: Missing Golden Opportunities

Outreach "programs" are good and all … “But sometimes I wonder if we haven’t overlooked and undervalued those moments that can’t be structured to fit into a program.”

5 Practical Lessons from Acts 8:26-38, Philip’s Encounter with the Eunuch

Lesson #1 Some opportunities, if they are missed, will be lost forever.

“ask God to open your eyes and help you recognize whatever divine appointments He has set up for you.”

“The kingdom can be advanced or hindered depending on your readiness.”

Lesson #2 … God will give special opportunities to those who are committed and prepared.

Remember the Boy Scout motto: “Be prepared.”

“The single most important thing you can do to prepare yourself to be used by God is study the Scriptures.”

Lesson #3 … Some opportunities are much larger than they first appear.

“Clearly, you cannot know when you look at an opportunity what its potential is.”

Lesson #4 … Some opportunities bear immediate fruit for the kingdom.

Lesson #5 … The goal of every opportunity should be to point people to Jesus.

3 Reasons Opportunities Are Easy to Miss:
  1. We have our own hurts and needs to contend with.
  2. People are great actors.
  3. The pace of our lives.

Discussion Questions:
  1. “Some opportunities are larger than they first appear. Can you think of a time when you seized what you thought was a small opportunity, only to have it produce a huge result?”
  2. “One of the reasons we miss opportunities to serve is because people are such good actors. What about you? Do you pretend to be happy and healthy even when you’re hurting?” … “How could you be more genuine about your needs without becoming a chronic complainer?”
  3. How can we slow down the pace of our lives to better see and take advantage of opportunities?
  4. What can be done to cultivate a passion for the lost?

“So one of the biggest challenges we face is to become more aware of the opportunities around us. We need to take our eyes off ourselves. We need to look for subtle signs of distress in people who may be too proud or too afraid to admit they’re struggling. And we need to slow down.”

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