Welcome to week three of our new series, Correcting Spiritual Drift. This week’s conversation focuses on those moments when God calls us to make a decision and return to him.
Building healthy and life-giving relationships.
What has been new or challenging in your life since last time the group met? Spend 20–30 minutes checking in with each other.
Share Part of Your Story
Use the following “This or That” questions to find out some of the decisions the members of your group have made. iPhone or Android? Pizza or Burger? Movie or Book? Pancake or Waffles? Morning or Evening? Cardio or Weights? Cake or Pie? Mountains or Beach?
Is anyone in your group approaching a big decision or life change? Take a moment to pray for them right now.
Taking next steps toward Christ together.
Taking turns, read 1 Kings 18:21–46 aloud. What’s the big idea? Who are the important characters?
Why is the land in a drought? Why are the people called to Mt. Carmel?
As the Israelites stand on Mt. Carmel, they can see a valley that should be the breadbasket of the country. Instead of lush vegetation, they see parched soil. What emotions do you think they experience standing there looking over the valley?
What question does Elijah ask in 1 Kings 18:21? How do the people respond? Why do you think they respond this way?
It seems the Israelites think they can get away with worshipping both Baal and Yahweh. They want to give God part of their life, but not all of it. How does this happen today? What are some of the areas of life people might not give to God?
Think through your own life and experiences. Where would you put yourself on the list of God having All, Most, Some or None of you? Why? What are some areas you don’t always feel like giving to God?
Often we include Jesus in what we need to have a full life, but we also include something else. It’s Jesus AND something. What do you feel is the something in your life?
The Silence of Baal
The prophets of Baal seem pretty confident in Baal. What do they do and how does Baal respond? What would it have been like to be there?
Baal’s response demonstrates his inability to provide the rain or support the hopes of the people. The false gods of our culture are just as powerless. What are some of the things our culture looks to for security, hope, happiness or value?
Honestly, Baal’s silence is a gift. It allows the people to come face to face with the reality of the situation. The same thing can happen in our life. Is there a time when you came face to face with the reality that what you were chasing could never fulfill you? How did that happen? How did you respond?
Elijah rebuilds the altar with 12 stones. What’s the significance of the 12 stones? What might Elijah be trying to remind them of?
How can it be meaningful to reflect on a time when you saw God provide or really felt his presence? What are some of those times in your life?
Elijah wants to have the people return to a time of meaningful relationship with God. In those times when you’ve had a meaningful connection to God, what are some of the small things you were doing? Are there any spiritual practices you have drifted away from? How can you return to them?
Return & Blessing
The passage begins with drought and ends with rain. What can we learn about the character of God through the story of the drought?
How do the Israelites respond in 1 Kings 18:39? Do you think their response is connected to God sending rain?
Pastor Jeff Manion said, “The epitome of spiritual arrogance is to think God is obligated to pour out his blessing on my life no matter what I am doing or how far I am drifting.” What do you think about that statement? How do we do this?
There is a blessing that follows obedience to God. It isn’t always material but can be relational, spiritual or character building. What are some of these blessings? How have you experienced blessings by taking steps back home toward God?
Today’s conversation was about those times when we are drawn to a decision. Where do you feel like God is drawing you to a decision today? Do you need to give him an area of your life you have been holding back? Is there something you need to stop relying upon for security, hope or value? Is there a step you need to take to reengage your relationship with him?
INVEST IN OTHERS
Valuing people outside the group and outside the faith.
Discuss how you and your group can better engage the people in your life outside your small group.
This March, the Invest in Others section looks at relational investments. As a group, we encourage each other to invest in those around us who do not know Jesus by showing God’s love to them. Who is someone you want to invest in that does not know Jesus? How can your group be praying for you and that relationship?
Download a printable PDF here.