Sure of God’s Love
The Point: God’s love is seen when we love others as He has loved us.
Get Into the Study
Use the following story to introduce today’s session.
This fall marks the twenty year anniversary of 9/11 and comparisons have been drawn between the tragedy of that day and the tragedy of our current, pandemic-stricken world. A recent online Psychology Today article took the opportunity to encourage Americans to look back upon 9/11 as a means of learning greater resilience in the face of the ongoing pandemic and accompanying hardships. “Today,” she writes, “on the 20th anniversary of 9/11, we find our country once again stressed by fear. We are grappling with a different horror, a global pandemic seemingly without an endpoint…Again, two decades later, we live with uncertainty and fear.”
However, the author reminds us that we, as a society, have gone through great loss before, and that loving one another is the key to resilience in these circumstances. As Christians, this is an opportunity to demonstrate the love of God to the world. As God loves us and pours into us, our love can freely pour out to others. These days are an opportunity for the world to see Christians lead the charge of love and sacrifice for others. Let’s be the helping hand reaching out to those who are lost, and need the hope of Christ the most.
Ask, “What are some ways you can let God pour His love into you in these trying times, so that you can better love others?”
Ashley Emmert is a freelance writer and full-time mama from Chicago, where she lives with her husband and two busy little boys.
As you conclude today’s session, use the following as an example of Christian love in action.
The August 21st flooding in Waverly, TN, left the elementary and middle schools unusable. School was canceled for several weeks until an alternative location was prepared. Knowing that the students would be returning to a new location and leaving behind damaged school supplies, a church in Gallatin, TN headed up an effort to get school supplies and backpacks to the students in Waverly. The church worked with the Tennessee Department of Education and the surrounding community to donate more than 1,000 backpacks.
Ask: “How can we as a group put love into action in our community?”
Encourage group members to brainstorm service opportunities. Invite a group member to take the lead on organizing the group in pursuing one of these options.
Nikki Wilbanks grew up in Tennessee before heading to California to study literature at Pepperdine University. After graduation, she enjoyed a decade-long career as a commercial real estate appraiser and investor. Having returned to Tennessee with her husband, she is now thrilled to be a stay-at-home mom and writer.
- What’s the most interesting wedding you’ve seen?
- How do you believe our culture defines love?
- What are some of your favorite love songs? Why?
1 John 4:7-10
- How would you define John’s use of “love” in these verses?
- When is it hard to believe God loves you?
- What is different about godly love compared to other loves?
1 John 4:11-13
- When is it toughest for you to love other people?
- How is love for others an evidence of knowing God?
- What do these verses teach us about loving others?
1 John 4:19-21
- What does it look like to obey these verses each day?
- What is our motivation to love God and others?
- What do these verses teach us about the importance of relationships within the Body of Christ?
For Those in Your Group
Send the following link to your group members as either a teaser before the group meets or as a follow-up thought:
Click here for a 20-minute podcast for both the group member and the leader.