Life Without Lack: Quitting Wandering (Week 3)
By: Reality SF
About This Material
Lent is the 46-day period between Ash Wednesday and Easter. It’s meant to be a time for confession, repentance, grief, fasting, and meditation on Scripture — preparing our hearts to celebrate resurrected life with Jesus on Easter. We as a church are keeping this tradition by meditating on Psalm 23 and practicing quitting something each week. If you have any encouragements or suggestions related to CG Material, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Meditating on Psalm 23:3
(We pray with the Psalm to worshipfully cultivate intimacy with God.)
“He refreshes my soul. He guides me along the right paths for his name sake.”
He refreshes my soul — Take a few minutes as a group to express brief prayers of gratitude for specific ways God has refreshed your soul. For example, “Thank you for meeting me while I pray on my run, Lord,” or, “Thank you for taking me out of a period of depression, Lord.”
He guides me along the right paths for his name sake — Take 5 minutes in silent prayer and reflection:
- What are the right paths God has you on? In what ways might you be off His right path?
- Ask God what it means for Him to guide “for his name sake.” What might He want you to know about this?
Share briefly — Take a few minutes as a group to briefly share what came to mind in this meditation on Psalm 23:3.
- Reading Psalm 23:3, Matthew 7:13-14, and Luke 15:11-32 side by side, what do you see? What’s the connection between God and the narrow path leading to life?
- In the Parable of the Prodigal Son, one son wanders while the other remains at home. How do each of these sons relate to the father? What ways of life do these two sons represent?
- What are these Scriptures saying about God’s guidance along “right paths”?
- If you read these passages as a mirror to examine your own life, what do you see? What specific temptations beckon you to wander from God’s narrow path for your life?
(This Lent season, we will take up an accountable practice of fasting from something each week — and not just quitting a behavior, but also a way of life. Split into smaller groups, possibly by gender, to share deeply.)
Share vulnerably with your smaller group:
- Reflecting on the practice you chose last week for Quitting Stress, give an account of how it went. Would you like to continue this practice?
- How have you been wandering from God like the prodigal son? How have you sat in self-justification and judgment like the elder son? How do you want God to help you?
Choose and Declare a Practice of Quitting Wandering
(Take on one of the options below or create your own. We will have opportunities to give an account of how it was to practice these each week.)
- Practice James 5:16: Confess your sins to someone this week in order to open yourself to God’s healing and grace.
- Nix the most common distraction in your life for one week — whether it be social media, TV, online videos, alcohol, etc.
- Pray Psalm 23 daily: slowly recite the words of the whole psalm twice, allowing the psalm to focus your attention on the Good Shepherd.
- Design your own practice. (Make it practical, prayerful, and helpful for quitting wandering.)