Watch the Move On Trailer
“I don’t make messes. I make catastrophes!”
To some degree, we can all agree with this statement. Jesus lived a perfect life. The rest of us miss the mark. This is why God’s grace and mercy is so important.
Sadly, though, we hold on to our messes, trying to hide them from God while wearing a good face before fellow believers. As a result we miss out on the blessings that come from the mercy of God. Without His mercy, we continue to carry the burdens, which come from our messes, unable to move on. The Apostle Paul was open about his own messes.
I thank Christ Jesus our Lord, who has given me strength, that he considered me trustworthy, appointing me to his service. Even though I was once a blasphemer and a persecutor and a violent man, I was shown mercy because I acted in ignorance and unbelief. The grace of our Lord was poured out on me abundantly, along with the faith and love that are in Christ Jesus. — 1 Timothy 1:12-14
Move On: When Mercy Meets Your Mess by Vicki Courtney is a six-week study for women designed to help believers deal with messes. We invite you to participate in the first video discussion from this study. To continue with the study for weeks 2-6, visit the FaithGateway store to purchase the DVD or watch the entire study on Study Gateway. ~ Fred Bittner, FaithGateway Bible Studies
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Cleanup on Aisle One!
You were born into a glorious mess, and we all have become something of a glorious mess ourselves. And in the midst of our mess, God has a thing for us… He is aware that we are but dust and our feet are made of clay, and He has made arrangements for us to not stay that way. ~ Stasi Eldredge
As you watch the video for session one, use the following outline to record any thoughts or concepts that stand out to you.
- We are all fellow sinners whose lives have been radically altered by God’s grace.
- Playing the “pretender” game will only leave us exhausted. What if we could be more honest about the challenges and struggles we all face in the Christian journey?
- The truth is that each of us is a mess. Unfortunately, many Christians live out their days trying to pretend that their lives are not such muddy messes!
- Most of us come to the realization that somewhere along the way, grace has shifted from being the solid foundation of our faith to a mere footnote in our belief system.
- Has our once-vibrant faith devolved into familiar mediocrity? Are we simply going through the motions like a well-rehearsed dance number?
- The heartbreaks and hurdles of life are meant to become trophies of God’s grace rather than secrets to be buried.
- It’s easy to blend into the crowd and pretend all is well and good. However, if we want to be real, we must be willing to put up a fight.
- Coming clean about our struggles and imperfections is like jumping off the back of a boat and trusting someone will catch us. But when we experience the mercy of God, staying on the boat and playing it safe is no longer an option.
Take some time at this point to discuss with your fellow group members what you just watched and to explore these concepts in Scripture.
- In the introduction to this session, I shared about the time when my son told me his fiancée, Casey, was pregnant. When was a time you were confronted with something difficult that similarly changed the course of your life?
- What fears did you have to face to be able to reveal that muddy mess to others? What response did you generally receive? How did that make you feel?
- Describe a situation where you felt the unexpected grace of God through the actions of fellow believers. How did that experience encourage you to be more honest with yourself about your life?
- Read: Romans 3:23. What does Paul remind us of in this verse? How does that apply to how you view — and even judge — other people?
- Read: Psalm 51:6. What does this verse tell us God is after in regard to our heart attitude? How does this compel you to live authentically?
- Read: Matthew 28:20b. “Jumping off the boat” and coming clean about our struggles can be a scary prospect. But what does Jesus promise in this verse? How does that truth give you strength to face your muddy messes?
Close your time together in prayer. Here are a few ideas on what you and your group members can pray based on the topic of this session: Pray that God will give you boldness to face the messes in your life. Pray that God will help you not to play the “pretender game.” Pray that God will enable you to be gracious to others. Pray that God will give you the reassurance to know that He is always with you even in the midst of your muddy messes.
For Ragamuffins, God’s name is Mercy. We see our darkness as a prized possession because it drives us into the heart of God. Without mercy our darkness would plunge us into despair — for some, self-destruction. Time alone with God reveals the unfathomable depths of the poverty of the spirit. ~ Brennan Manning
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We’ve all had devastating events crash into our lives. In His mercy, God enters those broken places and moments and promises to use every bit of it for His glory… if we let Him! Come join the conversation on our blog! We want to hear from you about how God was glorified in the middle of your messes!