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Step 8: Role

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Next Steps are designed to help us grow as Christians in two categories: God's Mission and God's Word. 

←Mission→ Look out to the world; look in at our lives. 


Mission Training:  Read Colossians 4:2-6 "Continue steadfastly in prayer, being watchful in it with thanksgiving. At the same time, pray also for us, that God may open to us a door for the word, to declare the mystery of Christ, on account of which I am in prison— that I may make it clear, which is how I ought to speak. Walk in wisdom toward outsiders, making the best use of the time. Let your speech always be gracious, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how you ought to answer each person."

Colossians 4 gives us some very practical ideas for effectively sharing Christ with those around us.
1. First, ask God to give you an open door of opportunity to share the gospel with someone.
2. When the opportunity comes you need to be able to clearly communicate the gospel. So ask God to help you make the gospel message clear.
3. "Walk in wisdom toward outsiders" - before you ever open our mouth to share the story of Christ, your actions are already a witness to others about Jesus and what he has done in your life. Treat everyone you meet with love and grace because you may have an opportunity to share Christ with even a stranger.
4. Make the best use of the time God has given you. There is no guarantee that you will have another opportunity to share Christ with someone tomorrow. Keep your eyes open for an opportunity today, and don’t pass up any opportunity God gives you.
5. Let every conversation be sprinkled with the salt of the good news of Jesus Christ. Everything relates back to God so no matter what you are talking about, you can intentionally and naturally speak of Christ. "What beautiful day God has made." "Yesterday I went to church." "These days my favorite book to read is the Bible because..." Through making small comments like these many doors of opportunity to share the gospel fully will be opened. 
6. We don't necessarily need to know how to answer each person's intellectual inquires about Christianity but we must be prepared to give an answer for our personal hope and trust in Jesus Christ. Always be prepared to share what Jesus has done for you. 


Accountability:  Last time we set a goal to share our testimony with one or more persons from our prayer list. How did that go? Celebrate any victories and encourage one another to keep striving to 
share Christ's love and gospel with those around you! 


Goals & PrayerLooking at your prayer list, choose at least one person. How will you share Christ with them in the next two weeks (examples: share your testimony, share the gospel, invite them to church, study First Steps, etc.)? Share the name of the person you choose and the goal you’ve set. Pray for these goals and for one another.


↑Word↓ Look up to God's Word; look down to our lives. 


Gather Together Around God’s Word: Next Steps 8 - Role

A unique and wonderful part of the Christian life is that God has given a special role to each and every Christian. The Bible uses the analogy of a body, calling the church the body of Christ and each Christian a part of his body.

How are we united?

1 Corinthians 12:12-13 “[12] For just as the body is one and has many members, and all the members of the body, though many, are one body, so it is with Christ. [13] For in one Spirit we were all baptized into one body—Jews or Greeks, slaves or free—and all were made to drink of one Spirit.”

The foundation of our oneness is…

One God - The One True God exists eternally in three unique persons, God the Father, the Lord Jesus Christ the Son of God, and the Holy Spirit of God. One God is to credit for the variety of gifts and roles given to the church. 1 Corinthians 12:4-6 “[4] Now there are varieties of gifts, but the same Spirit; [5] and there are varieties of service, but the same Lord; [6] and there are varieties of activities, but it is the same God who empowers them all in everyone.”

One Salvation - Likewise every Christian has been equally, humbly saved in the same way by God's grace. Ephesians 4:4-7 “[4] There is one body and one Spirit—just as you were called to the one hope that belongs to your call— [5] one Lord, one faith, one baptism, [6] one God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all. [7] But grace was given to each one of us according to the measure of Christ’s gift.”

How are we unique?

1 Corinthians 12:14 “For the body does not consist of one member but of many.”
-The church has many different members with various roles and abilities.
-These roles and abilities have been graciously given to us by God (see Ephesians 4:7 above).

1 Corinthians 12:15-16 “[15] If the foot should say, “Because I am not a hand, I do not belong to the body,” that would not make it any less a part of the body. [16] And if the ear should say, “Because I am not an eye, I do not belong to the body,” that would not make it any less a part of the body.”
-Every Christians belongs to the family of God. God has prepared a special seat at his table for each and every Christian.
-Though the church is large and diverse, Jesus uniquely loved you and particularly died for you to prepare a special place for you in the household of God. Galatians 2:20 ... And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.

1 Corinthians 12:17, 21-26 “[17] If the whole body were an eye, where would be the sense of hearing? If the whole body were an ear, where would be the sense of smell? ... [21] The eye cannot say to the hand, “I have no need of you,” nor again the head to the feet, “I have no need of you.” [22] On the contrary, the parts of the body that seem to be weaker are indispensable, [23] and on those parts of the body that we think less honorable we bestow the greater honor, and our unpresentable parts are treated with greater modesty, [24] which our more presentable parts do not require. But God has so composed the body, giving greater honor to the part that lacked it, [25] that there may be no division in the body, but that the members may have the same care for one another. [26] If one member suffers, all suffer together; if one member is honored, all rejoice together.”
-Every Christian has been given a useful and needed role within the church.
-Some are more visible roles while other roles are more modest. Yet every Christian's role is valued by God.

1 Corinthians 12:18 “But as it is, God arranged the members in the body, each one of them, as he chose.”
-God purposely, according to his infinite wisdom, chose your role within his church. It pleases God greatly when we faithfully steward the abilities and role that he has chosen to give us.

1 Corinthians 12:19-20 “[19] If all were a single member, where would the body be? [20] As it is, there are many parts, yet one body.”
-Though we are all unique and valued individually, we must alway remember that we are united as one body!

Take the step! 
What is your role and uniquely gifted abilities in the body of Christ? If you are not sure, ask your group what they think your role and abilities might be. This week begin to ask God to reveal the role and abilities he has given you to use in his church.


Fellowship:  How is everyone doing? What was the most significant event in the past two weeks? Is there something heavy upon your heart? Does anyone need prayer?