Pastor Ben Koole, Pastor Travis Patzkowsky and AJ Bowser : Making the Most of Your Fresh Start

Spark · 40:19 · Recorded January 1, 2017

Making The Most Of Your Fresh Start

2 Timothy 1:6-7 (NIV) For this reason I remind you to fan into flame the gift of God, which is in you through the laying on of my hands. For the Spirit God gave us does not make us timid, but gives us power, love and self-discipline.

What is the Gift of God?

God gives us himself to empower change.

Romans 5:5 (NRSV) …and hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out within our hearts through the Holy Spirit who was given to us.

God gives his fierce power.

Exodus 19:18 (HCSB) Mount Sinai was completely enveloped in smoke because the Lord came down on it in fire. Its smoke went up like the smoke of a furnace, and the whole mountain shook violently.

John 18:5-6 (HCSB) “I am He,” Jesus told them. Judas, who betrayed Him, was also standing with them. When He told them, “I am He,” they stepped back and fell to the ground.

God gives his warm love.

Romans 5:5b (TLB) …we know how dearly God loves us, and we feel this warm love everywhere within us because God has given us the Holy Spirit to fill our hearts with his love.

Romans 8:15-16 (NLT) So you have not received a spirit that makes you fearful slaves. Instead, you received God’s Spirit when he adopted you as his own children. Now we call him, “Abba, Father.” For his Spirit joins with our spirt to affirm that we are God’s children.

God gives his clear direction.

Exodus 13:21-22 (NLT) The Lord went ahead of them. He guided them during the day with a pillar of cloud, and he provided light at night with a pillar of fire. This allowed them to travel by day or by night. And the Lord did not remove the pillar of cloud or pillar of fire from its place in front of the people.

John 8:12 (ESV) Again Jesus spoke to them, saying, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will not walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.”

How to tend the flame?

Recognize a shrinking flame.

2 Timothy 1:7 (HCSB) For God has not given us a spirit of fearfulness, but one of power, love, and sound judgement.

Stay close to the hot spot.

John 15:5 (ESV) “I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing.”

Keep adding fuel.

Romans 12:1 (GNB) So then, my brothers and sisters, because of God’s great mercy to us I appeal to you: offer yourselves as a living sacrifice to God, dedicated to his service and pleasing to him.

Study & Discussion Questions
  • When believers rely on God’s Spirit it produces a character marked by power, love, and self-discipline. In making changes in the New Year, how might these three things help? Describe how each of these Christ-like traits can help you grow in 2017.

  • Often we act and react because we are afraid of something. Where do you see a Spirit of fear in people around you? Describe an area in your life where you are tempted to act out of fear.

  • The Apostle Paul describes our relationship with the Holy Spirit as something that can flourish or fade, like a flame growing or shrinking. In this season, do you feel like your relationship with God’s Spirit is growing or shrinking? Why?

  • Which of the Holy attributes described in Timothy do you need most in this season: God’s fierce power, warm love, or clear dir
    ection?

  • Every day this week, read 2 Timothy 1:6-7 as a family. Talk about how the gift of the Holy Spirit helps us be courageous in scary situations. God’s desire is that they would be filled with his power, love, and self-control. These are three characteristics that help us when the going gets tough. Take time to talk as a family about what makes you afraid, and pray that God would grow these attributes in you.

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  • The Lion And The Lamb

  • Christ Is Enough

  • Great Are You Lord

  • Start A Fire

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