Housegroup questions on Luke 15:11-32
Lots of questions! As always, please just choose the ones which seem right for your group.
Would anyone like to share an experience from their own life of a time when, in crisis, they headed for home and for the Father?
In what ways have you come to understand and to experience the Father’s love for you?
How would you respond to someone who said to you in distress – ‘I’ve called out to God, but He is silent. Why does He ignore me? What am I doing wrong?’
If, as human beings, each of us has in our hearts a longing for home, how will that longing express itself before we learn that God is our heart’s home?
Why might some people’s bad experiences of a human father make it difficult for them to respond to this story? What would you say to encourage someone in that situation?
How will it show in our lives if, having once experienced that joy of the Father’s loving acceptance we drift back into thinking that we need to bridge our distance from God by our own efforts, or our own deep contrition? If that happens to us, what’s the solution?
What does it say about our specialness as individuals that God throws a monster party to express divine joy at the success of the divine plan to bring us home?
In his note on the website on Sunday, John said that often learning to love ourselves, and learning that we are loved by God go hand in hand. Do you agree?
In what ways do you think the elder brother in the story was meant by Jesus as a depiction of the Pharisees who complained in v1-2 about Jesus’ openness to ‘sinners’?
The elder brother clearly feels that the father is taking his loyal service for granted. Can you imagine any situations where someone today might feel God is taking them for granted? How would you advise someone who, in frustration, expressed this view?
How will it show if the spirit of the elder brother is present in our lives and churches today?
How will it show in our lives, and in our church, if we cultivate the openness to people which was seen in Jesus’s life, as he happily sat down and ate with those whom the Pharisees looked down upon?
Are there any groups of people locally or further afield, whom we are ‘cutting off’ at the edge of the village? How will our attitude change when we take Jesus’ story to heart?
To what extent did you feel that Jonathan’s reflections on Kezazah in his sermon enhanced your appreciation of the parable?
Are there banquets to which I am invited by God, but which I am refusing to attend?