Journey of the Soul – Part 8

John 16:5-15; John 15:1-8

Journey of the Soul – Part 8

The Spirit as our Guide

I. The CONTEXT of this text for the DISCIPLES. (Jn 16:5-7)
A. They are HITTING the WALL. (Jn 16:5-6)
B. The COUNTER – INTUITIVE gift. (Jn 16:7)

Every story has a back story. While our text today looks like more of a section of teaching from Jesus, we have to see that this teaching was given to the disciples at a specific point and time.  They are coming to a very difficult time with painful experiences, and Jesus wants them to be prepared.

1. Kid’s Question: When have you gotten a gift that surprised you? Maybe something you didn’t think you’d like but grew to love?
2. Put yourself in the disciple’s shoes as they listen to this section of text. When have you felt that way? How might that have shaped what they heard?

II. What the SPIRIT will do for the DISCIPLES. (Jn 16:8-15)
A. Expose their SIN and BROKENNESS. (Jn 16:8-11)
B. EXPAND their CAPACITY to know God/Truth. (Jn 16:12-13)
C. Serve as a RELATIONALCONNECTION to God. (Jn 16:13-14)
D. Enable PARTICIPATION in the communion of the TRINITY. (Jn. 16:15)

Jesus says it will be better for them if He goes away.  I’m sure they weren’t too sure about that statement. Jesus presence was the key to what they thought God was doing. How could His leaving move the whole endeavour forward? 

3. Which of the things the Spirit will do for the disciples have you experienced the Spirit doing for you? What was that like?
4. When have you had an experience that you would say “expanded your capacity to know God”? What was that like?

III. An INTRODUCTION (more next week) as to how this LOOKS. (John 15:1-8)
A. The KEY word is “REMAIN”. (15:4,5,6,7)B. To LIVE in, to STAY, to WAIT, to ABIDE. (15:4,5,6,7)
B. To LIVE in, to STAY, to WAIT, to ABIDE. (15:4,5,6,7)
C. Remaining LEADS to RESEMBLANCE. (2 Cor. 3:18) 

It’s all fine and dandy to throw out a phrase like “participation in the communion of the Trinity”, but what does that actually mean?  And how does it look? It sounds way to ethereal and we need some concrete images to help us understand it.  Jesus provides a simple metaphor to help. We will start there, and dig deeper into this next week.

5. How do you think you can live our “remaining” in God? What does that look like in your day to day life?
6. As you reflect on the image of the vine and branch, what might God be saying to you this week?

IV. REMAINING in the TRINITY by the SPIRIT. (Gal, 5:25)
A. Truth as RELATIONAL, not just PROPOSITIONAL. (Jn 16:13-15; Jn. 5:39-40)
B. REMAINING requires OPENNESS.  (Jn. 15:4-8; Mk. 8:14-21)
C. Our PATHWAYS can and will be SURPRISING. (16:5-6; Matt. 4:1) 

There are some things to remember that can help us as we learn to remain in the Trinity by the Spirit. Some basic truths that can anchor us to this reality and keep us from getting distracted.  They take some time to internalize, but they are trustworthy points from which to navigate the spiritual journey.

7. How can you know if you are remaining open to wherever it might be that God wants to lead you? How easily can you surrender to a change in direction/plans?
8. When has the Spirit led you down a pathway that you didn’t expect? What happened? What did you take away from that experience?