What is your best picture or memory of Christmas? What are some expectations that you have for this Christmas? Why do you think it’s important for some to show a perfect picture of their life?
Do you consider yourself someone who has high, normal or low expectations during Christmas? Why?
With the majority of people being with family and friends this Christmas, how do you handle the person who has high expectations? How do you handle the person who is forceful with their expectations? How do you handle the person who bottles up their expectations and blows up with their emotions?
Although it wasn’t a Christmas party or dinner, Jesus got invited to a home for a dinner. He met two people who had different expectations of how His visit was going to go. Take a moment to read Luke 10:38-40. What is something that you notice in this story? Who are the three main characters of the story? Which sister’s personality can you relate to?
If the issue wasn’t preparing a dinner for Jesus, what was the issue? How did the dinner details distract Martha? How can you be so blinded by your expectations that you don’t even see Jesus? Have you been so focused on expectations that you’re missing out on the true meaning of Christmas?
How can your expectations hurt your relationship with Jesus? How can your expectations hurt your relationship with others? Why do failed expectations lead to disappointment and resentment? How do expectations lead to entitlement? How do entitled expectations kill relationships?
Take a couple minutes to read Luke 10:41-42. What does Jesus say to Martha? Why doesn’t Jesus tell Mary to help her sister with preparing the big dinner? How can you stop having big expectations and placing those expectations on others, including Jesus? How can having little expectations fill you up with big surprises?
Talk with your parent, spouse, small group and/or small group leader about taking some of these next steps.
Accept Jesus’ invitation and commit to following Jesus for the first time.
Learn and share the story of Mary and Martha.
Ask forgiveness from those you may have pushed and hurt with your expectations.
Ask God to help you with lowering your expectations.
Attempt to inspire, instead of impress, people this Christmas .
Allow your party, pictures, plans and projects to value people over all else.
Write out some ways Jesus has surprised you in the last month (something you least expected and caught you by surprise)!