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Game Changers: Week 2

Game Changers: Week 2

WHAT IS COMPARISON? (Exodus 20:17) 

  •   Comparison can be good like comparison to God I am broken and unable.
  •   Comparison between the way I do things and the way another person does things can lead to growth if I adopt a different way (as in discipleship).
  •   Comparison can also be destructive.

THE DEVIL AND DISCONTENTMENT   

  • In the beginning, the devil said it could and should be better, causing discontent . He then enticed mankind by saying it would be if we were to chose the conditions instead of God.
    •   a lack of gratefulness and thankfulness
    •   “Things would be better if you were in charge” stems from pride.
  •   Comparison between what you have versus what is over there, thinking that person else has it better and you deserve it, leads to covetousness—“I want my neighbor’s…”
  •   In our culture, social media provides highlight reel versus reality. Marketing tells us we would be happier if…, and others are happier because…

PRIDE AND SELF-CENTEREDNESS LEADS TO DISCONTENT WHICH LEADS TO COMPARISON. 

  •  Thoughts like: “I am not thankful,” “I deserve more because I am better/worked harder,” “I have less because I am not getting what I deserve,” and “I can’t trust God and others to give me what I want and need, therefore I will only trust myself.”

DEALING WITH COMPARISON VERSUS CONTENTMENT 

ACCEPT THE TRUTH: THE WORLD IS BROKEN, AND SO ARE WE. (see also Galatians 5:16-17)

  •   The right understanding of ourselves: every person is broken, our flesh and its desires and view is corrupted.
  •   We were designed for perfection, but it’s lost until heaven.
  •   We have the first fruits of the Spirit as a deposit—changing us, but we’re still groaning.Romans 8:19–24 19For the creation waits in eager expectation for the children of God to be revealed. 20For the creation was subjected to frustration, not by its own choice, but by the will of the one who subjected it, in hope 21that the creation itself will be liberated from its bondage to decay and brought into the freedom and glory of the children of God. 22We know that the whole creation has been groaning as in the pains of childbirth right up to the present time. 23Not only so, but we ourselves, who have the first fruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for our adoption to sonship, the redemption of our bodies. 24For in this hope we were saved. But hope that is seen is no hope at all. Who hopes for what they already have?

CHOOSE TO HAVE THE RIGHT EXPECTATIONS OF PEOPLE (1 Corinthians 3:3-7)

  •   No person can complete you. You cannot complete anyone else when you are not complete in yourself.
  •   When you make a person into an idol, it’s too much pressure on them. They will disappoint you.

THE RIGHT KIND OF CHANGE STARTS IN ME-I WILL BECOME THE RIGHT KIND OF PERSON RATHER THAN LOOKING FOR THE RIGT KIND OF PLACE. (Philippians 4:4-8, 10-13)

  • I rejoice (a choice). I look at what God has given and promised, and what He has give me despite what I deserve.
  •   I will surrender to the Lord and allow Him to change me.

I AM IN A WAR, BUT GOD WILL PUT ME IN THE RIGHT PLACE TO MAKE THE MOST DIFFERENCE. (Philippians 1:12-14)

  • I am here to fight for the people in my life.
  •   I am here to bring glory to Jesus by what I fight for and who I am as I fight.
  •   When I fight with the Lord’s help, including His peace, I will be where He wants me to be.

STEPS FROM COMPARISON TO CONTENTMENT

  •   I start by getting out of the chair and get on my knees in prayer.
  •   I acknowledge the reality of the world we live in, my own brokenness, and God’s goodness toward me.
  •   I look at my spouse through God’s eyes. I join God’s perspective by faith.QUESTIONS TO DISCUSS WITH YOUR LIFE GROUP AND FAMILY AND FRIENDS

Passages to consider: Philippians 4:11-13; 1 Timothy 6:6-8; Hebrews 13:4-5; 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 Note: this could be a good week to break out into men’s & women’s groups.

  •  Share what was meaningful to you from the sermon.
  1. Read Philippians 4:11-13 and 1 Timothy 6:6-8. What do you learn about contentment from these passages? A) What seems to be essential to contentment from these verses?
  2. What has been your experience with practicing contentment? A) What helps you nurture contentment in your heart and thinking?
  3. What makes comparison harmful? A) When could comparison be helpful? a) Who are models or mentors for you in your marriage and relationships?
  4. How do you recognize discontentment or comparison in your thinking? A) What do you do when you recognize it is present?
  5. Read 1 Thessalonians 5:15-16 and Hebrews 13:5. What do you see that is helpful and practical for growing and practicing contentment in these passages? Challenge: Try keeping a gratitude journal this week—write down at least one thing daily that you are thankful for. Next week, share with the group anything you notice about how it affected your attitude and relationships.

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