LEADERS COMMUNITY GROUP STUDY GUIDE
FOR THE WEEK OF NOVEMBER 21, 2021
This guide is designed to give helpful hints in preparing & leading your group in discussion.
END OF THE QUARTER PLANNING – Last Week of Community Group is November 28 – December 4.
LEADERS KICKOFF: Friday, January 7th
Join us for delicious dinner around the camp fire, be encouraged by sharing God’s activity in your group from first quarter and expect some training to help you as we enter into the new season.
WiINTER SIGN-UPS January 9-16
FEEDBACK FORMS COMING NEXT WEEK
⇨ Christmas Night of Gathering
December 5, 2021 7:00 – 8:45pm
Gather this Christmas season for an evening filled with a time of worship from our own all-girl band, fellowship as we get to know the women on STF’s staff, and updates about upcoming service opportunities
⇨ CANDY CANE TRAIN
December 19, 5:00 – 7:00pm
All aboard! The Candy Cane Train is coming to South Tampa Fellowship on Sunday for a time of fun for the whole family! You can take a ride around the Christmas Tree Trail, listen to live music, take pictures with Santa, enjoy free food trucks, and more. Our very own SHINE choir will even be performing! So, invite your neighbors and help us spread the Christmas cheer.
Looking back at your notes from this week’s teaching, was there anything you heard for the first time or something that caught your attention, challenged or confused you?
1. How do you think most Christians would respond to the statement that tithing is an essential part of our spiritual health and growth?
2. Did you have an example of giving or any encouragement to be generous while you were growing up? What about any training on handling your finances—did you receive any of that growing up?
1. The Bible calls us to give to God first before we meet the rest of our financial responsibilities. This “giving off the top” is both an act of thanking God for his current provision AND a way of trusting him for future provision. Yet throughout history, many of God’s people have given to his work primarily out of what’s left over rather than off the top. What surprises you about God’s attitude toward this practice in Malachi 3:7-12?
Malachi 3:7-12 New Living Translation
7 Ever since the days of your ancestors, you have scorned my decrees and failed to obey them. Now return to me, and I will return to you,” says the Lord of Heaven’s Armies.
“But you ask, ‘How can we return when we have never gone away?’
8 “Should people cheat God? Yet you have cheated me!
“But you ask, ‘What do you mean? When did we ever cheat you?’
“You have cheated me of the tithes and offerings due to me. 9 You are under a curse, for your whole nation has been cheating me. 10 Bring all the tithes into the storehouse so there will be enough food in my Temple. If you do,” says the Lord of Heaven’s Armies, “I will open the windows of heaven for you. I will pour out a blessing so great you won’t have enough room to take it in! Try it! Put me to the test! 11 Your crops will be abundant, for I will guard them from insects and disease.[a] Your grapes will not fall from the vine before they are ripe,” says the Lord of Heaven’s Armies. 12 “Then all nations will call you blessed, for your land will be such a delight,” says the Lord of Heaven’s Armies.
Can you think of any reasons people have for giving out of their leftovers rather than off the top?
What is most challenging to you about “giving off the top”?
2. It’s natural to think that if we made more money, we would be more generous. But studies show that a rise in income doesn’t necessarily mean a rise in giving. How could the following verses help you be one of the people who actually become more generous?
Proverbs 3:9-12 New Living Translation
9 Honor the Lord with your wealth
and with the best part of everything you produce.
10 Then he will fill your barns with grain,
and your vats will overflow with good wine.
11 My child, don’t reject the Lord’s discipline,
and don’t be upset when he corrects you.
12 For the Lord corrects those he loves,
just as a father corrects a child in whom he delights.
Ecclesiastes 5:10 New Living Translation
10 Those who love money will never have enough. How meaningless to think that wealth brings true happiness!
Matthew 6:19-21 New Living Translation
19 “Don’t store up treasures here on earth, where moths eat them and rust destroys them, and where thieves break in and steal. 20 Store your treasures in heaven, where moths and rust cannot destroy, and thieves do not break in and steal. 21 Wherever your treasure is, there the desires of your heart will also be.
TAKING IT HOME
1. As we celebrate Thanksgiving this week it’s fitting to pause and remember all we have to be thankful for. Read Psalm 118 and thank God for who He is, what He has done, what He is doing and what He will do.
Psalm 118 New International Version (NIV)
1Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good; his love endures forever.
2 Let Israel say: His love endures forever.”
3 Let the house of Aaron say: His love endures forever.”
4 Let those who fear the LORD say: His love endures forever.”
5 When hard pressed, I cried to the LORD; he brought me into a spacious place.
6 The LORD is with me; I will not be afraid. What can mere mortals do to me?
7 The LORD is with me; he is my helper. I look in triumph on my enemies.
8 It is better to take refuge in the LORD than to trust in humans.
9 It is better to take refuge in the LORD than to trust in princes.
10 All the nations surrounded me, but in the name of the LORD I cut them down.
11 They surrounded me on every side, but in the name of the LORD I cut them down.
12 They swarmed around me like bees, but they were consumed as quickly as burning thorns; in the name of the LORD I cut them down.
13 I was pushed back and about to fall, but the LORD helped me.
14 The LORD is my strength and my defense; he has become my salvation.
15 Shouts of joy and victory resound in the tents of the righteous: “The LORD’s right hand has done mighty things!
16 The LORD’s right hand is lifted high; the LORD’s right hand has done mighty things!”
17 I will not die but live, and will proclaim what the LORD has done.
18 The LORD has chastened me severely, but he has not given me over to death.
19 Open for me the gates of the righteous; I will enter and give thanks to the LORD.
20 This is the gate of the LORD through which the righteous may enter.
21 I will give you thanks, for you answered me; you have become my salvation.
22 The stone the builders rejected has become the cornerstone;
23 The LORD has done this, and it is marvelous in our eyes.
24 The LORD has done it this very day; let us rejoice today and be glad.
25 LORD, save us! LORD, grant us success!
26 Blessed is he who comes in the name of the LORD. From the house of the LORD we bless you.
27 The LORD is God, and he has made his light shine on us. With boughs in hand, join in the festal procession up to the horns of the altar.
28 You are my God, and I will praise you; you are my God, and I will exalt you.
29 Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good; his love endures forever.
2. Make a list of as many things as you can think of that God has provided for you. Now take a moment and thank Him specifically for these blessings.
How can this group remember you in prayer this week?