“Loving the Difficult Neighbor” – Series, “Love Better,” Message 2 – Mike McDaniel, August 16, 2020

“LOVE BETTER” Questions

The topic today may bring out a lot of emotion or it may cause others who normally share to shut down. Being sensitive and listening to both are critical as your group shares. Don’t feel like you have to have all the answers as a leader.

Here are some good ground rules to keep in mind:

No bitter talk about anyone or name dropping. It doesn’t need to become a gripe session.

Please share respectfully and guard against telling someone else what they ought to do. Rather, allow the scripture passage to direct and guide.

Be prayerful – open in prayer and close in prayer. When sharing how we’ve been hurt by others, it can potentially open up negative emotions. Prayer is a part of the healing process. You might even read James 5:16 again together as a group.

Focus less on the offender or the offense and more on how we can respond to our offender. Notice that Jesus wasn’t addressing the OFFENDERS in the passage, but those who have been OFFENDED.

Central Text: Luke 6:27-36

Of the five dimensions of love (easy, family, mutual, sacrificial, and mercy), why is sacrificial and mercy love the hardest? Why do you think Mike said that some people never make it to having sacrificial and mercy love?

What is the difference between mercy and grace?

Notice from the message last week and this week how “mercy” love is promoted as the BETTER LOVE (read Luke 10:36-37 and Luke 6:36). Now read Micah 6:8. How important is mercy to the character and expression of our life and love?

When reflecting on the four ways we express mercy stated in Luke 6:27-28 (loving our enemies, doing good to our haters, blessings our cursers, praying for our abusers), which are you the best at? Which are the most challenging for you?
Without naming names, going into a rant about someone, or being passive aggressive, can you share with your group how you have lived out one of these charges well and have no regrets? Can you share about a time when you did the opposite and felt bad because you matched their wrong with your wrong?

What is your next step of obedience with your offender?