Stand-Alone Sunday: Gratitude

Sermon Notes & Group Questions

“Maina, as we approach the Christmas season, my favorite word is “Thanks.” Just the word lifts the spirit. To say “thanks” is to celebrate a gift. Something. Anything. Animals. Bald spots. Chocolate. Pictionary and Patty (my wife!). To say “thanks” is to cross the line from have-not to have-much, from the excluded to the recruited. “Thanks” proclaims, “I’m not disadvantaged, disabled, victimized, scandalized, forgotten, or ignored. I am blessed.” (Garth Leno)

Five Reasons To Be Thankful

1. I am thankful in how God directs our paths.

John 1:35-37 - “The next day again John was standing with two of his disciples, 36and he looked at Jesus as he walked by and said, “Behold, the Lamb of God!” The two disciples heard him say this, and they followed Jesus.”

2. Thankful that Jesus is not confined to our timeline.

John 1:38-39 - “Jesus turned and saw them following and said to them, “What are you seeking?” And they said to him, “Rabbi” (which means Teacher), “where are you staying?” He said to them, “Come and you will see.” So they came and saw where he was staying, and they stayed with him that day, for it was about the tenth hour.”

3. Thankful that Jesus communicates with us.

John 1:40-42 - “One of the two who heard John speak and followed Jesus was Andrew, Simon Peter’s brother. He first found his own brother Simon and said to him, “We have found the Messiah” (which means Christ). He brought him to Jesus. Jesus looked at him and said, “You are Simon the son of John. You shall be called Cephas” (which means Peter).”

4. Thankful that Jesus pushes us to step outside of our comfort zone.

John 1:43-48 - “The next day Jesus decided to go to Galilee. He found Philip and said to him, “Follow me.”44Now Philip was from Bethsaida, the city of Andrew and Peter. Philip found Nathanael and said to him, “We have found him of whom Moses in the Law and also the prophets wrote, Jesus of Nazareth, the son of Joseph.” Nathanael said to him, “Can anything good come out of Nazareth?” Philip said to him, “Come and see.” Jesus saw Nathanael coming toward him and said of him, “Behold, an Israelite indeed, in whom there is no deceit!” Nathanael said to him, “How do you know me?” Jesus answered him, “Before Philip called you, when you were under the fig tree, I saw you.”

5. Thankful that Jesus is more than enough.

John 1:49-51 - “Nathanael answered him, “Rabbi, you are the Son of God! You are the King of Israel!” Jesus answered him, “Because I said to you, ‘I saw you under the fig tree,’ do you believe? You will see greater things than these.” And he said to him, “Truly, truly, I say to you,you will see heaven opened, and the angels of God ascending and descending on the Son of Man.”

Group Questions:

Read John 1:35-42

Q1: What was the main thing that originally led you to want a relationship with Jesus?

Q2: Have you ever really wanted God to provide a solution to something in your life only to realize he had a different plan, or different timing in mind for you? Share your story.

Re-read John 1:41

Q3: Andrew was anxious to introduce his brother to the Messiah. Is there someone in your life that you are burdened to introduce to the Messiah? If appropriate, share your situation.

Read John 1:43-50

Q4: The disciples found it difficult to believe that Jesus (something good) would come from a place like Nazareth. God seems to often do the unexpected. Why do you think that is?

Re-read John 1:50

Q5: We come to Jesus because of our need for him. But as we get to know him more and more we begin to see “greater things” that God has for us. What is one “greater thing” you are grateful for this season?

As you pray together, thank the Lord for one another and for the growing relationships we have in our groups!!


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Stand-Alone Sunday: Gratitude

This is a Sample!

Enjoy it? Click below!