How would you describe your Thanksgiving? Who is invited? Why are they invited? You may live in a country where there is no Thanksgiving holiday. What are some things that you are thankful for and do for others?
The majority of people will spend time with family and friends this Thanksgiving. How do you handle different and dysfunctional family and friends?
Jesus had an important dinner with His friends, who were each different and dysfunctional in their own way. We took a look at four of them: Peter, Matthew, Simon, and Judas Iscariot. Take a moment to read John 13:1 and Matthew 10:2-4.
What is something that you notice about the list of apostles/disciples? Who got a new name? Which ones had their profession listed? Who was the one listed as the betrayer? How does this change the meaning of this list of names?
What do you know about Peter? How can you relate to Peter? What do you know about Matthew? How can you relate to him? What do you know about Simon? How is he relatable?
What do you know about Judas Iscariot? How can you relate to the one who betrayed Jesus? Who do you best relate to?
Take a couple minutes to read John 13:1-5. What does Matthew say about Jesus’ relationship with His friends? How can Jesus love a group of dysfunctional men who would let him down within hours?
We find that the word “love” is the same word used in John 3:16. It’s agapaō, which many refer to as agapē. It’s described as an act of commitment that can’t be earned or deserved. This love invited the twelve disciples to the table and it invites us to the table. How has Jesus loved you? Describe a time when you recognized that He was inviting you to the table? Whether you’re eating with others or by yourself, how can you show this type of love to others?
Talk with your small group and your small group leader about taking some of these next steps:
Accept Jesus’ invitation to come to the table and commit to following Jesus for the first time
Make a list of five things Jesus has provided for you over the last year and put it somewhere where you’ll see it
Invite someone over for dinner
Serve someone (maybe a food kitchen, open up your home for family/friends, provide a meal for a family in need)
Make a relationship right (apologize, forgive, listen, talk, etc.)
Open up and confess to someone (small group leaders, staff, spouse, sponsor) about secret sins