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Session 3:

Rely On Others

Your Best Self | Message Series

Seeing their faith, Jesus said to the man, “Young man, your sins are forgiven.”

Luke 5:20

Introduction

For some of us, self-reliance is one of our strongest values. We pride ourselves on being able to take care of our lives and our families, and struggle to receive help from others. Ironically, some of us who wrestle with this issue the most are also the most eager to give help when it’s needed by others. In that respect, we love to give, but struggle to receive. In fact, receiving any sort of help can make us feel embarrassed or rude. Maybe you’ve caught yourself thinking, “I just don’t want to be a burden.”

Today we’re going to explore this challenge by reading a story from the Bible where one of the main characters was literally a burden to his friends, but his willingness to receive help allowed him to come face-to-face with Jesus.

FACILITATOR'S NOTES

Share Your Story

Start the conversation by using these suggested questions:

1. What kind of experts do you rely on the most in your life? Tax/finance experts? Health care experts? Therapists? Wellness or fitness coaches? What makes it easy to receive help from those experts?

2. What areas of your life do you feel the most resistant to asking for help? What makes those areas more vulnerable for you? What risk would there be to opening up about those challenging areas?

3. Have you ever been in a situation where you had no choice but to rely on someone else? Did that experience change your life’s perspective at all?

Watch the Video

Hear God’s Story

Luke, chapter 5 is full of incredible stories of Jesus preaching and healing. Within this chapter, there is also a theme of people leaving their regular lives to follow Jesus (we see that Peter leaving his fishing job, Levi leaving his tax collecting booth, and the man with leprosy humbly coming to Jesus). In the midst of those stories, we read one in which the main character couldn’t come to Jesus on his own.

Read Luke 5:17-26.

  • By this time in Jesus’ ministry, there was usually a large crowd following Jesus – and in this instance they were filling the whole house where he was teaching. Seeing that crowd as his friends carried him to the house, how do you think the paralyzed man felt?

  • The paralyzed man’s friends show a lot of creativity and hard work while getting the man to Jesus. How do you think the paralyzed man responded to all of their efforts? – The friends finally end up ripping through the tiles of the roof in order to lower their friend right in front of Jesus. What do you think the man was feeling in those last few seconds of being lowered down?

  • Jesus’ first response to the man and his friends in verse 20 has nothing to do with physical healing. Why do you think Jesus responded to the man’s sins first?

  • What do you think the significance is that Jesus saw “their” faith in verse 20?

  • How do you think the man’s friends responded at the end of the story? How might their lives have been changed by this experience?

Create a New Story

In this section, let’s talk about how we’ll apply what we’ve learned from God through the Bible passage. We’ll decide on a few practical steps we can take this week to live out God’s truth.

  • By relying on his friends, the paralyzed man received forgiveness, healing, and joy. Are there areas of your life that could use this kind of transformation?

  • Far from feeling like he was a burden, the man’s friends seem outrageously motivated to help him. How would your family and friends feel about helping you during challenging times?

  • Are there people in your life that you share faith challenges with? What would it look like to rely on others for spiritual support?

  • How could this group work together to support you? Is there an area of your life where you would be willing to ask for help today, and give us a chance to carry you?

Make sure to close your meeting in prayer, thanking God for giving us people in our group that we can rely on in a new way. Ask him to give us humility to share our challenges with others, so they can pray for us and help us.

For Parents

We also designed weekly activities to have fun and guide spiritual conversations with your elementary or preschool child based on each week’s Groups Series content.

WEEK 3 - KIDS ACTIVITIES

Week 3 – Daily Devotions

Day 1
Don’t look out only for your own interests, but take an interest in others, too. (Philippians 2:4)
How can you let others look out for you? What are some challenges you could share with others?
Day 2
Share each other’s burdens, and in this way obey the law of Christ. (Galatians 6:2)
Who is it in your life that helps share you burdens?
Day 3
If you help the poor, you are lending to the Lord—and he will repay you! (Proverbs 19:17)
Are you as willing to ask for help in your finances as you are in other areas of your life? Why might this be a bigger struggle?
Day 4
And this same God who takes care of me will supply all your needs from his glorious riches, which have been given to us in Christ Jesus. (Philippians 4:19)
How might God supply for our needs through others?
Day 5
Confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The earnest prayer of a righteous person has great power and produces wonderful results. (James 5:16)
Who in your life could you pray with for forgiveness and healing? What is the benefit of sharing that kind of prayer with others?
Day 6
A person standing alone can be attacked and defeated, but two can stand back-to-back and conquer. Three are even better, for a triple-braided cord is not easily broken. (Ecclesiastes 4:12)
Are there two friends in your life that you can rely on? How can you thank them for their support today?

Ready for the Next Session?

ALL DISCUSSION GUIDES
SESSION 4