Follow-Up: Commitments & Metanoia vs. Paranoia (03.09.20)
- In light of public health concerns regarding the coronavirus, feel free to get creative and meet with your group over a video call platform such as FaceTime or Zoom.
- If your group does choose to meet in person, please follow the CDC’s recommendations:
- Stay home when you are sick.
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
- You are welcome to use the outline below as a guide for your group’s time together, or simply use the time to pray over our community, city, state, and world.
- If your CG chooses not to meet at all this week, you can use this practice content as a framework for individual reflection.
Remembrance & Thanksgiving
After greeting everyone, begin your time together by reading Psalm 23 out loud together:
The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.
He makes me lie down in green pastures.
He leads me beside still waters.
He restores my soul.
He leads me in paths of righteousness
for his name’s sake.
Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,
I will fear no evil,
for you are with me;
your rod and your staff,
they comfort me.
You prepare a table before me
in the presence of my enemies;
you anoint my head with oil;
my cup overflows.
Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me
all the days of my life,
and I shall dwell in the house of the Lord
After reading the psalm out loud, ask someone to open the gathering in prayer. Invite the Holy Spirit to be present and lead you into the grace and peace He freely provides.
Community Check-in: Commitments
Last month, as part of our series in Acts, Dave shared different ways we are called to faithfully commit to this church community: continually learning, showing up, praying, and saying “yes” to the Holy Spirit.
In our CGs that week, we made and shared personal commitments in these areas (here is that practice guide). This week, we want to check in on those commitments in the spirit of love and encouragement. Take some time to answer the following questions as a group:
- What were the personal commitments you made about continually learning, showing up, praying, and say “yes” to the Holy Spirit?
- How has that been going over the past month?
- What has been easy about sticking to those commitments? What has been hard?
- What can we do as a community to help encourage you in those commitments?
Practice: Living in Metanoia vs. Paranoia
During March 2nd’s Sunday teaching, Dave contrasted metanoia, the Greek word used in Acts 3 for repentance (literally, “above mind”), with paranoia (or “irregular mind,” implying distraction and anxiety). Let’s take some time to dig into these concepts and what living in metanoia could look like in our daily lives this week.
- What elements of your life are you holding with paranoia right now? Why?
- What would it look like to accept Jesus’s invitation to freedom through metanoia (repentance) in those areas this week?
Before closing this section out, ask one person in the group to pray for a spirit of metanoia and against any temptations toward paranoia in our own lives, as well as in our city and communities.
Have one person read the Prayer of St. Francis aloud over the group and then close in prayer.
Lord, make me an instrument of your peace;
where there is hatred, let me sow love;
where there is injury, pardon;
where there is doubt, faith;
where there is despair, hope;
where there is darkness, light;
and where there is sadness, joy.
O Divine Master,
grant that I may not so much seek to be consoled as to console;
to be understood, as to understand;
to be loved, as to love;
for it is in giving that we receive,
it is in pardoning that we are pardoned,
and it is in dying that we are born to Eternal Life.