Discussion Guide: Week 2
Relationships: To Build or Not To Build
Life happens in the context of relationships. As a matter of fact, we are wired to be in relationships and connected to one another. Last week, we discussed the importance of relationships. This week, let’s discuss some things that work to destroy relationships and some things that will help us build healthy ones.
In the same way, even though we are many individuals, Christ makes us one body and individuals who are connected to one another. Romans 12:5 GW
Getting More Together:
What causes fights and quarrels among you? Don’t they come from your desires that battle within you?… You covet but cannot get what you want, so you quarrel and fight. James 4:1-2 NIV
One of the main things that destroys relationships is found in this verse – selfishness.
a. How does selfishness occur in relationships?
b. Why does selfishness destroy relationships?
c. Can a selfish person change? If so, what enables them to change? (Read Galatians 6:8 together)
Look out for one another’s interests, not just for your own. Philippians 2:4 GNT
a. What does it mean to “look out for one another’s interests”?
b. What are some other Scriptures that teach us how to put others first?
c. What are some practical ways we can put others first?
d. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another. John 13:35 NIV. It has been said that unselfish living reflects Christ to a world that is watching. Considering this Scripture in John, why do you think unity among believers is so important for our Christian identity?
Pride leads to arguments. Proverbs 13:10 TLB
Pride will destroy a person: a proud attitude leads to ruin. Proverbs 16:18 NCV
a. What is pride?
b. How does our own pride get in the way of relationships?
c. Have you ever known someone who was full of pride? How did you feel when you were around them?
Be humble and give more honor to others than to yourselves . . . your attitude should be the same that Christ Jesus had. Though He was God, He did not demand and cling to His rights as God. Philippians 2:3, 5-6 (NCV)
a. What does it mean to be humble?
b. How does humility help build relationships?
c. Does our culture today encourage humility? Where do we learn how to practice humility?
Fear of man will prove to be a snare, but whoever trusts in the Lord is kept safe. Proverbs 29:25 NIV
a. How do you think fear affects relationships?
b. What causes fear in relationships?
c. Does fear of failure, fear of the future, fear of getting hurt affect you? If so, how can you overcome those fears?
Love has no fear because perfect love expels all fear. If we are afraid . . . it shows that we have not fully experienced His perfect love. 1 John 4:18 NLT
a. How does love overcome fear?
b. What kind of love do we receive from God?
c. How does the love of God helps us to let go of fear?
Look after each other . . . Watch out that no bitterness takes root among you, for as it springs up it causes deep trouble, hurting many in their spiritual lives. Hebrews 12:15 TLB
a. What does it mean to have bitterness or to be bitter?
b. What causes bitterness?
c. Why is bitterness compared to a root?
Make allowance for each other’s faults and forgive anyone who offends you. Remember, the Lord forgave you, so you must forgive others. Colossians 3:13 NLT
a. Why is forgiving so important?
b. What does forgiving do for your relationships?
c. How do we “make allowance for each other’s faults”? What do you think that means?
Share any insights from the message that spoke to you and how it applies to your relationships.
What are some steps you can take that will help strengthen your relationships?
Divide into smaller groups or prayer partners (male with male, female with female) and take time to share and pray over one key prayer request for the week.