“Do not call to mind the former things, Or consider things of the past. Behold, I am going to do something new, Now it will spring up; Will you not be aware of it? I will even make a roadway in the wilderness, Rivers in the desert…” Isaiah 43:18-19 NASB 1. IF YOU DON’T EXPECT IT, THEN YOU WON’T LOOK FOR IT!! “My soul, wait silently for God alone, For my expectation is from Him.” Psalm 62:5 NKJV “This is what the Lord says: If you can break my covenant with the day and the night so that one does not follow the other, only then will my covenant with my servant David be broken.” Jeremiah 33:20-21 NLT 2. GET RID OF THAT “RE-RUN” MINDSET, AND “REPEAT” ATTITUDE!! “And no one puts new wine into old wineskins. For the old skins would burst from the pressure, spilling the wine and ruining the skins. New wine is stored in new wineskins so that both are preserved.” Matthew 9:17 NLT 3. THE SIZE OF YOUR EXPECTATIONS DETERMINE THE SIZE OF GOD’S BLESSINGS!! “Then the fire of the Lord fell and consumed the burnt sacrifice, and the wood and the stones and the dust, and it licked up the water that was in the trench.” 1 Kings 18:38 NKJV “Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us…” Ephesians 3:20 NKJV Victory Group Questions: 1) What “NEW” thing is God doing in your life?? Or is there a “NEW” season that God is taking you through right now?? How is it going?? 2) Is there something or someone you are expecting in your life?? How are you looking for it/them?? (i.e., serving, joining victory groups, seeking counseling, etc.) 3) What are some “Old Wine Skins” that you are getting rid of?? (i.e., bad habits, addictions, people, etc.) and why?? 4) How CONFIDENT are you in the Lord?? Does the size of your Expectation match the size of your Faith?? Has God ever exceeded your expectation??
“…the God who gives life to the dead and calls into being things that were not.” Romans 4:17 (NIV) 1. LET FAITH CALL IN YOUR NEW YEAR, NOT FEAR! “Then David and the people that were with him lifted up their voice and wept, until they had no more power to weep.” 1 Samuel 30:4 (KJV) “And David was greatly distressed; for the people spake (spoke) of stoning him, because the soul of all the people was grieved, every man for his sons and for his daughters: but David encouraged himself in the Lord his God.” 1 Samuel 30:6 (KJV) 2. UNDERSTAND THE SOURCE OF YOUR STRENGTH! “Do not sorrow, for the joy of the Lord is your strength.” Nehemiah 8:10 (NKJV) “Weeping may endure for a night, But joy comes in the morning.” Psalms 30:5 (NKJV) 3. OUR ETERNAL PRAISE IS GREATER THAN THE EXTERNAL PRESSURE! “…greater is He who is in you than he who is in the world. They are from the world, therefore they speak as from the world, and the world listens to them. We are from God…” 1 John 4:4-6 (NASB) Victory Group Questions: 1. What promises are your calling into your life for 2021? 2. Read Acts 4:36. Who is your Barnabas? 3. If your Barnabas is not around, how and where do you find encouragement?
1. YOU MIGHT BE IN YOUR WAITING TIME, GOD IS NOT WASTING TIME “God isn’t late with his promise as some measure lateness…” (2 Peter 3:9 NASB) “…I will do something new, now it will spring forth; will you not be aware of it?...” (Isaiah 43:19 NASB) “As the pregnant woman approaches the time to give birth, she writhes and cries out in labor pains…” (Isaiah 26:17 NASB) 2. CELEBRATES OTHER PEOPLE’S “NOW TIME” “Be happy with those who are happy, weep with those who weep.” (Romans 12:15 NLT) “…the Lord God had not sent rain upon the earth…” (Genesis 2:5 NASB) 3. WHEN GOD SAYS “NOW”, DON’T SAY “NO” “…Noah did; according to all that God had commanded him…” (Genesis 6:22 NASB) 4. “NOW” WILL ALWAYS BE “NOW” “ ‘The time has come…the kingdom of God has come near. Repent and believe the good news!” (Mark 1:15 NIV) “For he says, ‘In the time of my favor I heard you, and in the day of salvation I helped you.’ I tell you, now is the time of God’s favor, now is the day of salvation.” (2 Corinthians 6:2 NIV)
“But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.” Matthew 6:33 NKJV 1. START WITH A CLEAN SLATE: TABULA RASA!! “But forget all that—it is nothing compared to what I am going to do. For I am about to do something new. See, I have already begun! Do you not see it? I will make a pathway through the wilderness. I will create rivers in the dry wasteland.” Isaiah 43:18-19 NLT “This means that anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. The old life is gone; a new life has begun!” 2 Corinthians 5:17 NLT 2. IDENTIFY THE CORNER AND BEGIN THERE!! “Together, we are his house, built on the foundation of the apostles and the prophets. And the cornerstone is Christ Jesus himself.” Ephesians 2:20 NLT 3. ESTABLISH A BORDER TO SET BOUNDARIES!! “For the law was not intended for people who do what is right. It is for people who are lawless and rebellious, who are ungodly and sinful, who consider nothing sacred and defile what is holy, who kill their father or mother or commit other murders.” 1 Timothy 1:9 NLT Victory Group Questions 1. What is your New Years resolution?? What is the FIRST step that you’re taking to accomplish it?? How’s it going so far?? 2. What are some of the things or people lol you’re leaving behind in 2020 to Start with a Clean Slate?? Why?? 3. How involved is Jesus with your decision making?? Would you say that Jesus is a “Priority” or a “Lifestyle”?? How?? 4. With the Law written on your heart, how has the Law saved you or led you to salvation?? How has the Boundaries protected you throughout your walk??
THE GIFT OF CLOSURE 1. CLOSE THE DOOR TO YOUR PAST “…one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and reaching forward to what lies ahead.” (Philippians 3:13 NASB) “Do not call to mind the former things, or ponder things of the past.” (Isaiah 43:18 NASB) “Come, my people, enter into your rooms and close your doors behind you…” (Isaiah 26:20 NASB) “…the sea returned to its normal state at daybreak, while the Egyptians were fleeing right into it…” (Exodus 14:27 NKJ) 2. DECLARE BY FAITH: THIS IS MY DAYBREAK 3. CLOSURES MAY FEEL LIKE YOU’RE BEING REJECTED, BUT YOU’RE NOT BEING REJECTED, YOU’RE BEING RE-DIRECTED “…there was no room for them in the inn.” (Luke 2:7 NKJ) “For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” (Jeremiah 29:11 NIV) Victory Group Discussion: 1. What past things does God want you to close? Why do you think? 2. What areas of your life do you need to declare by faith “This is my daybreak!" Why? 3. Give an example of a time when God closed something (i.e. an opportunity, a relationship etc.), but used that closure to lead you so something better than you expected.
“He said to him the THIRD TIME, ‘Simon, son of Jonah, do you love Me?’ Peter was grieved because He said to him the third time, ‘Do you love Me?’ And he said to Him, ‘Lord, You know all things; You know that I love You.’ Jesus said to him, ‘Feed My sheep.” John 21:17 NKJV 1. MAKE THIS GIFT COUNT!! “Lord, remind me how BRIEF my time on earth will be. Remind me that my days are NUMBERED—how fleeting my life is. You have made my life no longer than the width of my hand. My entire lifetime is just a moment to you; at best, each of us is but a breath.” Psalm 39:4-5 NLT HOW?? 2. MAKE JOY A CHOICE, NOT A DESTINATION!! “When they saw the star, they rejoiced with exceedingly great JOY.” Matthew 2:10 NKJV 3. ALWAYS REMEMBER: CHRISTMAS BEGINS WITH CHRIST!! “They entered the house and saw the child with his mother, Mary, and they bowed down and WORSHIPED him. THEN they opened their treasure chests and gave him gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh.” Matthew 2:11 NLT Victory Group Questions: 1) Have you received the Gift of Third Chances?? What happened?? And what did you learn?? 2) Are you making this Gift count?? How?? What are you doing dif ferent?? 3) Have you viewed JOY as simply a Destination?? How has this message changed your mindset?? 4) Share of an annual Family Christmas Tradition. Something you do as a family. Or something you do on your own?? 5) What's your favorite Christmas Memory??
“For am I now seeking the approval of man, or of God? Or am I trying to please man? If I were still trying to please man, I would not be a servant of Christ.” (Galatians 1:10 ESV) 1. SAY NO TO PEOPLE PLEASING AND YES TO PLEASING GOD. "And without faith it is impossible to please him, for whoever would draw near to God must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who seek him." (Hebrews11:6 ESV) 2. FAITH PLEASES GOD. “Look to the Lord and his strength, seek his face always.” (1 Chronicles 16:11 NIV) 3. PRAYING IS YOUR COMMUNICATION WITH GOD. Life Group Questions 1. What life lessons did you learn the hard way from people pleasing? 2. Read Colossians 3:1-17. Briefly discuss what this passage means to you. 3. Read 1 Timothy 2:1-4. Discuss the different types of prayers. 4. How is your prayer life? Discuss.
1. THE WILDERNESS SEASON IS TEMPORARY, NOT PERMANENT “…Jesus was led up by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil.” (Matthew 4:1 NASB) 2. THE WILDERNESS IS A TEST OF GOD THAT CONFIRMS AND PROVES WHAT’S IN YOU PREPARED FOR GRADUATION, NOT FOR AUTOMATIC PROMOTION “Now in those days John the Baptist came, preaching in the wilderness…” (Matthew 3:1 NASB) “…the word of God came to John…in the wilderness.” (Luke 3:2 NASB) “…they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony, and they did not love their lives to the death.” (Revelation 12:11 NKJ) 3. REDEEM THE WILDERNESS, NOT REBEL IN IT “ ‘Only do not rebel against the Lord; and do not fear the people of the land…the Lord is with us…’” (Number 14:9 NASB) 4. HAVE AN “EVEN THOUGH” MINDSET “Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I fear no evil, for You are with me…You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies…” (Psalm 23:4 NASB) Victory Group Discussion: 1. What are some indicators in life letting you know that you may be in the wilderness? 2. How will you respond in your wilderness? 3. How has your faith grown stronger in the wilderness? 4. What life lessons did you learn in your wilderness?
No good thing will He withhold from those who walk uprightly. Psalm 84:11 (NKVJ) 1. GOD’S IDEA OF A GOOD THING MIGHT BE DIFFERENT THAN YOURS As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts. Isaiah 55:9 (NIV) 2. GOD IS WAITING FOR YOUR OBEDIENCE DON’T TAKE MATTERS INTO YOUR OWN HANDS 3. WAIT FOR GOD’S TIMING; HE HAS SOMETHING BETTER FOR YOU I trust in your unfailing love; my heart rejoices in your salvation. I will sing the Lord’s praise, for He has been good to me. Psalm 13:5-6 (NIV) Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in ALL circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus. 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 (NIV) VICTORY GROUP QUESTIONS 1. Have your prayers ever been unanswered by God? How did God turn things around? Share with the group your experiences and the lessons God taught you through this time. 2. Did you ever take matters into your own hands while waiting for God to answer your prayers? Discuss the story about Sarah in Genesis 16 and the consequence of her “birthing an Ishmael’, instead of waiting on the promise of Isaac. 3. Read 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18. How can you apply this scripture to the season that you are in? What is God teaching you in the area of trusting in Him when it comes to answered prayers?
1. Pain PINPOINTS the areas we need HEALING in. I am suffering and in pain. Rescue me, O God, by your saving power. Psalms 69:29 NLT He heals the brokenhearted and bandages their wounds. Psalms 147:3 NLT 2. Pain PROMOTES our FAITH. Yet what we suffer now is nothing compared to the Glory he will reveal to us later. Romans 8:18 NLT Dear brothers and sisters, when troubles of any kind come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy. For you know that when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow. James 1:2-3 NLT 3. Pain POSTIONS us back to the CROSS. “See, God has come to save me. I will trust in him and not be afraid. The Lord God is my strength and my song; he has given me victory.” Isaiah 12:2 NLT Victory Group Discussion: 1. How did pain pinpoint the areas you need healing in, physically or spiritually? 2. Describe a time in your life where your pain promoted your Faith? 3. What does positioning yourself to the cross do for you?
GOD CAN SEND ANGELS DISGUISED AS STRANGERS “Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for by this some have entertained angels without knowing it.” (Hebrews 13:2 NASB) 1. FULFILLING YOUR DESTINY COULD HINGE ON WHO YOU NEED TO GET TO KNOW “…two angels came to Sodom in the evening as Lot was sitting in the gate of Sodom. When Lot saw them, he rose to meet them and bowed down with his face to the ground.” (Gen. 19:1 NASB) “…for the compassion of the Lord was upon him; and they brought him out, and put him outside the city.” (Genesis 19:16 NASB) “…I was a stranger and you welcomed me.” (Matthew 25:35 ESV) 2. MAKE EVERY PERSON FEEL VALUED “…the King will answer them, ‘Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brothers, you did it to me.’” (Matthew 25:40 ESV) 3. TREAT OTHERS BETTER THAN YOU WOULD YOURSELF “Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves.” (Philippians 2:3 NIV) “…love the stranger, for you were strangers in the land of Egypt.” (Deuteronomy 10:19 NKJ) Victory Group Discussion: 1. When was the last time you blessed a complete stranger, and what did you do to bless him/her? 2. What are 2 practical things you can do to help make someone you don’t know feel valued? 3. Has there been a time when a complete stranger blessed you? How did you feel?
“His lord said to him, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant; you have been faithful over a few things, I will make you ruler over many things. Enter into the joy of your lord.” Matthew 25:23 NKJV 1. LET YOUR ACTIONS REFLECT YOUR GRATITUDE!! “Then he who had received the one talent came and said, ‘Lord…” Matthew 25:24 NKJV “But someone will say, “You have faith, and I have works.” Show me your faith without your works, and I will show you my faith by my works.” James 2:18 NKJV 2. CONTROL WHAT YOU CAN CONTROL!! “For wherever there is jealousy and selfish ambition, there you will find disorder and evil of every kind.” James 3:16 NLT 3. NOW REPEAT!! “…you have been faithful over a few things, I will make you ruler over many things...” Matthew 25:23 NKJV “But that is the time to be careful! Beware that in your plenty you do not forget the Lord your God…” Deuteronomy 8:11 NLT Life Group Questions
1) Think of a Gift, Talent, Financial Blessing etc. that God has given you. What ACTIONS have you taken to reflect your Gratitude?? Share and Explain. 2) Read James 3:16. Why is Jealousy and Envy toxic to our lives?? How can it hinder us from experiencing a “Well Done” life?? 3) Share of an experience that you had to “Make the best of what you had” (Making lemons into lemonade). What did you learn?? 4) After hearing the message, what is the first thing you are going to address to pursue a“Well Done” life?? Between #1 and #2, which one do you think you need to focus on more this season??