Great Challenges - Fearless Teaching #6

"Great challenges," as used here, is a reference to fear inspiring troubles in our lives that initially seem too hard for us to stand up under.

Introduction: I believe this series of studies will help us be stronger disciples of Jesus Christ. A key idea throughout this series is to be fearless (i.e., in relation to this world) and faithful (i.e., in relation to God’s will). This series of teachings is based on the above mentioned book (By Max Lucado. Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson, Inc., 2009).

The format of the teaching will feature summary highlights of the chapter, some discussion questions and points, and pastoral comments. Students are encouraged to purchase the book; however, these class notes will be sufficient for the intended studies.

Chapter Six – I'm Sinking Fast
Summary Highlights -
- Fear of Overwhelming or Great Challenges (see Mt. 14:27). The author paints the picture of being afraid of flying, until he learned how to focus on the trained pilot, in front of him. Peter in Matthew 14:24, had to learn to focus on Jesus.

- Jesus does His best work in the storms. It is there that He has our undivided attention. Peter probably would have never requested the walking on water, if it were not for the storm.

What a great sign to put in churches and homes, "Don't be afraid. Take courage. I am here!" See Mathew 14:27; Philippians 4:5-7; Matthew 28:20; John 10:28; Romans 8:37-39.

- As you may find assurance in a doctor's credentials, when he brings you troubling news, we should find courage in directing our minds on God's ability to handle our issues. We should work on being mindful (see Heb. 2:1).

- Faith is holding on to that which was once accepted, in spite of changing moods. Feed your faith and starve your fear. See Lamentations 3:1-5, 7-9, 21-24. Discouragement can cease, even when the storm doesn't. Storms are not an option, but fear is.

Discussion Questions and Points –
1. Discuss how storms or great challenges in your life have helped you pay attention to God in ways that you did not pay attention in the clams.

2. Discuss ways of being mindful of God's ability and promises to see His people through.

3. Discuss how you identify with Lamentations 3:1-5, 7-9, 21-24

Pastoral Comments –
- There are things in this life that don't make much sense to us. However, worrying and being afraid of our great challenges doesn’t change the reality of the matter. In fact, the only thing worry and fear do is make things appear to be worst.

Let's work on being mindful of God's love and power, as we continue to obey Him. Journaling, meditating, and talking with others of like mind are nice ways to stay mindful of God's love and power.

Conclusion: It is my prayer that this material has not simply been interesting. The hope is that you have prayerfully studied it and engaged in some serious soul searching. The ultimate aim is for us to be doers of God’s will – mature disciples of Christ.

Let’s continue to work on being both fearless (i.e., in relation to this world) and faithful (i.e., in relation to God’s will). God has much for those who obey His will.  

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921391: Fearless: Imagine Your Life Without Fear Fearless: Imagine Your Life Without Fear
By Max Lucado / Thomas Nelson

Fear is like an invisible prison. It holds you captive, influencing your choices and perceptions about life, God, and other people. Can you imagine what your life would be like without fear? With so much going wrong in the world it can seem hard to picture. In Fearless, Max Lucado author of 3:16: The Numbers of Hope, and pastor of Oak Hills Church, shows you how life can be lived with confidence and joy, when you replace your fear with faith. Let this inspiring and timely message encourage your heart today!

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