“YOU ARE ESSENTIAL” to Jesus and His Church
Romans 1:11-12 / Romans 12:3-8
We are not meant to be spectators but participants. We are to be unleashed to do what God has for us to do.
We are blessed to be a blessing to others. There is joy in participating in God’s mission and plan for his church and the world.
Leaves demonstrate the foliage and fruit of the committee follower of Jesus.
Founding members’ testimony, every member had a job to do. Success was dependent on everyone knowing and doing their assignment. The 80/20 rule. How can God use each of us?
“The church does not exist to count lives, but to make lives count.”
1. Mutual Faithfulness
What Makes You Essential to the Church? Romans 1:11-12
- You are essential because your life is a testimony to the interdependence of the church. Mutual encouragement, strength in the journey, Hebrews 10:24-25. We are interdependent. Someone else will step up because you are faithful to God.
- You are essential because you are needed to help others receive strength and encouragement for their own giftedness. To benefit others, when we are obedient, God will work through you, to inspire and strengthen others, every piece counts.
- You are essential in the church moving forward in the greatest health. This part comes out of Romans 1:8-10, Paul is thankful for them for participating in the body and God’s work. They all participated.
2. Individual callings.
- How are you essential to the church? Romans 12:3-8.
- How do we agree to this truth, the calling he has given us?
- All parts don’t have the same function, but according to the grace given to us.
- Gifts don’t emphasize us. Don’t think more about ourselves, or more highly than we are.
- Gifts are empowered by God, not man. Given to individuals as he desires. These are not mere talents, but fitted together by God’s design.
- Gifts are for the benefit and health of the church, not personal notoriety. For us to meet the fullness of Christ.
- Gifts are not given in exclusion of other gifts, they work together. Example, Jesus expects us to use gifts, like mercy or giving or evangelism, to be demonstrated by all believers.
Motivational, or ministry, to be used in service of the church by the church.
Ken went through the nine listed gifts… (listed below)
Life Group Questions:
- What skills or qualities are necessary to play a team sport well?
- What influences, people, situations, or events have significantly shaped your life?
- Ken talked about moving from being a spectator to a participant. Tell about a time when you were more of a spectator than a participant in church. Why?
- When and how did God more you toward becoming a participant?
- How did the story about the KGBC founders hit you? (The fact that everyone had a job to do). What would the church be like if that were true today?
- Remember this quote: “The church does not exist to count lives, but to make lives count.” What does this statement say to you? How do we make lives count? How does the statement relate to Ken’s message?
- What is the most reasonable response to God’s great mercy? (Romans 12:1-2)
- If it is not the sermon or the preacher, how should the mind of a Christian be changed? (Romans 12:2)
- How should Christians think about themselves? (Romans 12:3)
- We often think above statement is about thinking too much of yourself, but how does it relate to spiritual gifts and how we tend to think less of ourselves? Is that true? Why?
- What facts should keep a person from feeling superior or inferior to other Christians? (Romans 12:3-6)
- In what ways are Christians different from one another? How are they the same? (Romans 12:4-6)
- What are the gifts of God? (Romans 12:6-8)
- How should each person use his or her gifts? (Romans 12:6-8)
- Ken talked about the inter-connectedness of the church. How are we connected and dependent upon one another?
- How does it feel that your giftedness is to bless other people, not to get a job done in the church? Do we see ever serving in the church this way, or are we too task oriented?
- Ken basically said that the greatest health in a church comes from every believer employing that gifts that God has given; therefore you are essential. If the church were to have an annual physical, what would the doctor say about KGBC?
- Since gifts work together for the good of the body and the kingdom of God, what has God revealed to you about your giftedness and place in the church?
- What fears do you have about knowing and understanding your gifts and therefore being used by God?
- The exercise at the end of the service, what did you think about that, personally, and as a congregation? What did God say to you?
- How did you respond to the open-ended survey? What stood out for you?
- Regarding the March 24 message by Fontaine Greene (Haggai 1:2-7).
- When have you been more concerned over your own comfort than the mission and purposes of God? In what ways have you been distracted from God’s work/mission/purpose?
- When was the last time that your “considered your ways” and made a change to get committed to God’s plan and calling on your life?
- How often have we said NO to God’s calling in favor of our “better” options?
- Do you see the connection between the calling of God to be a missionary and the calling of God to use the gifts that he has given to you?
- How might you keep yourself from distractions and disobedience?
The Open-Ended Survey: (based on Ken Hemphill’s “You Are Gifted”)
- In what areas of service do you find the most satisfaction, fulfillment, and energy?
- What area of ministry generates the greatest sense of enthusiasm and excitement?
- List things that you have done that caused people to say, “You ministered to me” or “You encouraged me” or “You do that well.”
- What areas of service do you think about when talking to God about the needs of our Christian community?
- List ministries and areas of service that have been the most comfortable for you.
- What are the needs in our church or community that cause you the most concern?
- What natural abilities do you have that might be used to meet those needs?
The List of Spiritual Gifts:
- Prophecy: boldly proclaiming God’s truth; giving God’s direction for life.
- Serving: providing practical help by doing necessary tasks that support the Church.
- Teaching: making clear Biblical truths with simplicity & accuracy with context & details helping others learn and grow; researching why things are true.
- Encouragement / Exhortation: motivating others; reassuring, strengthening those who are wavering in their faith, discouraged, etc.
- Giving: releasing material resources to further God’s work, with gladness and liberality, cheerfully support ministries with a lifestyle of stewardship that spread the gospel.
- Administration / Leadership: promoting, leading; organizing people, tasks, and events to reach goals and assist ministries to become more effective and efficient.
- Mercy: identifying with and comforting those in need; sensitivity to suffering; practically help those who are in need.
- Evangelism: passionately leading others to the saving knowledge of Christ, communicating the gospel effectively, directing conversation to eternal things.
- Shepherding: overseeing, training, feeding (spiritual needs); caring for those with various needs, concerned for the spiritual nurture of individuals, encouraging them to grow in their faith.