Community Group Questions | Roots for Transformation | Nov 4, 2018
Roots for Transformation
Rev. Blake Altman
God intends to change you by His Word. How is He at work in you to do that? Read the following passage and consider these questions.
Matthew 24:42-51 (ESV)
 Therefore, stay awake, for you do not know on what day your Lord is coming.  But know this, that if the master of the house had known in what part of the night the thief was coming, he would have stayed awake and would not have let his house be broken into.  Therefore you also must be ready, for the Son of Man is coming at an hour you do not expect.  “Who then is the faithful and wise servant, whom his master has set over his household, to give them their food at the proper time?  Blessed is that servant whom his master will find so doing when he comes.  Truly, I say to you, he will set him over all his possessions.  But if that wicked servant says to himself, ‘My master is delayed,’  and begins to beat his fellow servants and eats and drinks with drunkards,  the master of that servant will come on a day when he does not expect him and at an hour he does not know  and will cut him in pieces and put him with the hypocrites. In that place there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.
What is calling or vocation?
1. God calls us into His Kingdom (upward calling)...to lead a life (inward calling)...in service to Him (outward calling). How do these three “callings” complement each other?
2. “Occupation tells me how I am provide for the material needs of my life and my family. But vocation tells me a deeper truth. It tells me how I am to provide for the Lord’s Kingdom.” (Skip Ryan) Sometimes occupation and vocation overlap a great deal, and other times they don’t. Discuss how we might think of occupation and vocation as both separate and overlapping.
Why do we need it?
3. We live in a society that still maintains the significant Roman Catholic distinction between “sacred” work and “secular” work. Pastors and missionaries are seen as those with “calling,” whereas engineers and janitors are seen as those with “occupations.” Why might we tend to make such unbiblical distinctions?
4. The reformer Martin Luther once remarked: “The maid who sweeps her kitchen is doing the will of God just as much as the monk who prays — not because she may sing a Christian hymn as she sweeps but because God loves clean floors.” How does a remark such as this reverse our distinction between the sacred and the secular in terms of calling?
How do we find it?
5. Frederick Buechner said, “The place God calls you to is the place where your deep gladness and the world’s deep hunger meet.” Yet most of us don’t know exactly how to find this “place.” Discuss your “place” (and encourage each other in!) the following:
a. Look outward – Affinity: what “people needs” do I resonate with?
b. Look inward – Ability: what are my abilities and deficiencies?
c. Look upward – Opportunity: where does the community tell me I am needed?
What does calling give us?
6. Discuss how understanding our calling frees us:
a. In our relationships.
b. In our mundane, daily choices.
c. In our finances.
d. In our time management.
ROOTS GENEROSITY CHALLENGE
7. Has my giving become comfortable and routine or does my giving allow God to change and grow me?
8. How might my calling be used to extend generosity?
Go to the Father and ask him to reveal more of your true calling, how you might be a kingdom-blessing to the world through all that you are and have.