Bible Study – Enough Relationships

Bible Study - Enough Relationships

Enough for Now — Unpacking God’s Sufficiency*
Lesson 4 – Enough Relationships

Introduction

The 15-day shutdown did something strange in my house – it brought all four of my kids home for more than a couple days.  (I have two in college and one at an out of state boarding high school).  We have loved the family time, but the biggest sadness and struggle our older children face is that they may not get to finish the school year (or even graduate) with their friends.  They feel a little friend-deprived.

Do you ever feel relationship-deprived?  Relationships are important (even to us introverts).  In the midst of a quarantine, I think we all start longing for them.  Maybe we even feel like we have no one to talk to right now at this stressful time.  Maybe we feel jealous of others and their relationships.  Maybe we have unmet expectations in our relationships or we just see all the flaws in the people close to us and dream of something better.  They just aren’t good enough.

Scripture:  Ecclesiastes 4:7-12

  1. King Solomon writes about the blessings of relationships.  However he also writes about a man he observed.     What had transpired that left this man unhappy and without friends?
  2. We have been repeatedly looking at Jesus’ parable of the rich fool and the verses after. (Luke 12:13ff)  Jesus’ words were in response to a man who had a strained relationship with his brother.  Why was that relationship strained?
  3. Selfishness often affects the way we view the relationships around us.  When has one of these selfish attitudes in your heart hurt an earthly relationship for you?
    1. Greed or materialism
    2. Envy or a feeling of personal shame and low self-esteem
    3. Pride or a feeling of superiority

Scripture:  1 John 4:7-21

  1. Trace in these verses where loves starts, where love goes, and where it ends.
  2. We often try to fill our need for relationships with people first, instead of God.  Jesus is our greatest relationship.  Give some reasons why.
  3. “Perfect love drives out fear”.  What does that mean for your sense of shame or anxiety before God?  How does God’s perfect love for us also drive away fear of reaching out into other relationships?
  4. We often view our earthly relationships in line of what we can get from them.  God, who has filled us with His love for us, enables us to view our earthly relationships as what we can give to them.  Think of a strained or difficult relationship you have.  How does that change your perspective?
  5. Instead of being discontent, how can you pour love into an existing relationship this week?

CLOSE WITH THE LORD’S PRAYER, LUTHER’S MORNING OR EVENING PRAYER, or a PRAYER OF YOUR OWN.

 

 

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