Grow Deep: Summer DiscipleSHIP, Week 2

Week 2—June 10-16

Set Sail with Jesus in FriendSHIP

“No longer do I call you servants … but I have called
you friends.” John 15:15

Full disclosure: I’ve never been in a shipwreck. The closest thing I experienced was in high school, during a family trip in the family boat, up the Canadian coast of Lake Huron. We encountered swells much greater than our 24-footer was used to. There were hours of slow going, up the crests and down the troughs, seeming like any minute, one of those waves would be “the one” that would slide in and capsize the boat. We were relieved to finally make it to Grand Bend, Ontario, the nearest available marina.

The disciples were in scary storms and waves, and Paul was in an actual shipwreck. These were specific instances in history, but there’s also a universal application we can take from them as well. Common to all maritime misadventures, even the King family’s on Lake Huron, is a lack of control; a helplessness in the face of forces over which you have not an ounce of power!

God actually wants us to know that feeling because it reflects the truth. That helplessness is true in our spiritual condition of being dead in our sins apart from Jesus (what’s more helpless than that?). It’s also true of many circumstances in our lives. It can seem like broken relationships, death of loved ones, loss of health or employment are unexpected waves that sweep over us and over which we have little or no control.

Still, there’s good news in the midst of heavy seas! First, that Jesus rescues us from our sins and that He is present with us just as He was with His disciples in their boat. Second, Jesus gives His followers a role in His “Coast Guard”: To reach out as a friend with news of His rescue to others who are swamped, struggling or lost at sea.

This week, see His rescue at work in your life. Look to the places where He might be pointing you to join His rescue of someone else.


Sunday, June 10

Read: Acts 27
Paul, still a prisoner in chains, set sail for Rome. During the voyage, a storm rolled in. Paul shared a vision God had given him, to help the others in the ship take heart during a storm. The ship did not make it, but there was no loss of life.

Reflect: What passages have you read from God’s Word that encourage you during the “storms” of your life? Who can you encourage with a call, text or note with an uplifting word from Scripture?

For the Family: How did Paul show his trust in Jesus? How was he a friend to those who were holding him as a prisoner on the ship? He told the others on the ship about God’s promises. What promise of God will you share with a friend today?


Monday, June 11

Read: Luke 15:1-7
The parable of the lost sheep is the first parable of Luke, Chapter 15. Though Jesus is speaking about sheep, we know that the parable is about people. Jesus always looks out for the lost and helpless. His goal is to rescue the lost and alone and connect them into community with Him and with others.

Reflect: Do you have a friend or relative to whom you can reach out in their lost-ness or loneliness? Pray for them today and share this passage with them.

For the Family: What do we learn about Jesus in this parable? How does that give you confidence that Jesus will always rescue you, even when you feel lost or lonely?


Tuesday, June 12

Read: Luke 10:38-42
In this familiar story, Jesus and His disciples stopped at the home of Martha of Bethany. Martha’s sister and brother, Mary and Lazarus, lived with her. Martha busies herself preparing a meal for her guests while Mary sits at the feet of Jesus. Martha becomes frustrated and complains to Jesus about her sister. The problem wasn’t that Martha was making preparations, but that she was “anxious and troubled.”

Reflect: From what area of life would you ask Jesus to take away your anxiety? Ask Him to work through you to encourage someone else who is experiencing an anxious time.

For the Family: What was Martha upset about in the reading today? Why? What did Jesus tell her to do instead of being worried and upset? What should we do when we are worried and upset?


Wednesday, June 13

Read: Luke 22:39-54
In this passage, Jesus went out to the Mount of Olives to pray (which was His evening custom). The disciples who went with Him fell asleep. He continued to pray to His Father with much anguish. His prayers demonstrate His commitment to obey His Father’s will, even to the point of death of a cross.

Reflect: Jesus’ attitude toward you is one of great compassion, just as He had even when His friends fell asleep on Him or made rash decisions to defend Him. Thank Jesus for His forgiveness and His great compassion. He cares for you!

For the Family: Describe how you think Jesus is feeling in these verses? What is He doing? Why is it important to know that Jesus prayed when He was struggling? Think about something that is hard for you right now. Pray to your heavenly Father about it together as a family.


Thursday, June 14

Read: Luke 23:26-24:12
Jesus’ death and resurrection was about friendship: making you into a friend of God! He loves you so much that He willingly gave up His own life so that you would have life with Him forever.

Reflect: God answers prayer. Give thanks for His friendship; reflect on those you know who do not know Jesus. Pray for them that they could know this great friendship.
For the Family: Jesus was crucified so that you could be part of His family. He wants everyone to be part of His family. Do you know someone who is not part of His family? How can you be a friend to that person and tell them about Jesus?


Friday, June 15

Read: Acts 3:1-26
In the beginning verses of Chapter 3 of Acts, Peter and John go to the temple at the hour of prayer. They encounter a lame man. They heal him, and the crowd is amazed. But Peter doesn’t focus on the miracle of the disabled man who was healed. His focus in speaking to the crowd is about Jesus.

Reflect: Underline or list the incredible claims about Jesus that Peter makes. Let those words shape your prayers today.

For the Family: How did Peter and John show friendship to the man who could not walk? Who healed the man and made him walk again? Share together some ways that Jesus has healed and rescued you.


Saturday, June 16

Read: Psalm 122
This Psalm is titled, “A Song of Degrees of David.” It is an expression of David’s delight in being invited to worship. It was sung as people traveled to Jerusalem for worship at the temple. Jerusalem was God’s house, and His people belonged there.

Reflect: You too, through faith in Jesus, belong. What can you look forward to as you prepare to gather in His house with His people in worship tomorrow?

For the Family: In this Psalm, David and his friends were singing on their way to church (the Temple). They were glad that they were going to the Temple to worship the Lord! Go around your family and one at a time share something that makes you glad to go to church. Pray together, thanking God that He comes to us in worship.