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Session 5

Feeling overwhelmed by all the crowds?

Read: Matthew 8:1-4

What thoughts come to mind when you hear, “Black Friday”? 

Huge crowds, chaos, lines, and noise. During the holidays, shoppers seem to move through stores and lines without seeing others. With treasures in tow, they are focused on getting in and out as quickly as possible. 

The crowds around Jesus in Matthew 8 would have been even more intense. Jesus had just finished teaching the “Sermon on the Mount” to huge crowds of people. Now those people and more were following Him down the mountain. Can you imagine all the people clamoring over one another, pushing in, trying to get to Jesus? 

Then something crazy happens. A man with leprosy, a skin disease, gets to Jesus and kneels before Him. Picture the crowds parting and the gasps they let out as this leprous man comes close. Lepers were outcasts. They were not allowed near the rest of the population. They were often hit with rocks if they came near people in towns. 

Then, things get crazier than those Black Friday lines. Jesus reaches out His hands and touches this leprous man. With one touch of Jesus’ hand, the man is healed. Jesus could have healed the man by simply speaking. Yet, He chose to use the act of physical touch to bring healing. 

The biggest Christmas miracle could happen when we choose to see others the way God sees them.

Jesus taught us a huge lesson without saying a word. Everyone matters. There is no disease, no disability, no sickness or deformity that is too much for our Savior. He came for all of us — the healthy and the sick. 

The power to heal heart and soul, disease and disability, lives in each of us. We have Jesus’ presence, His Spirit, in us. 

This holiday season, don’t let the hustle and bustle keep you from really seeing those around you. The biggest Christmas miracle could happen when we choose to see others the way God sees them and love them as they are. 


Reflect:

  • When you see someone who looks different from you, is your instinct to look away or to see them as God sees them? 
  • Who do you know who feels “untouchable”? What’s one way you can reach out to love and encourage them, just like Jesus did for the leper? Your kindness could bring healing to their hurting heart. 

1

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2

Are you ready to brave the wilderness?

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3

What it looks like to welcome “whoever believes”

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4

The greatest transformation starts with this invitation

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5

Feeling overwhelmed by all the crowds?

Feeling overwhelmed by all the crowds?

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6

The best way to help someone who’s torn between worlds

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7

Know someone struggling with shame? You can help

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8

The way things are isn’t the way they have to be

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9

The one invitation you don’t want to say no to

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10

Are you feeding the negativity?

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11

Your faith influences your family more than you think

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12

What stops you in your tracks?

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13

Who is guiding who you reach out to?

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14

The best gift you can give someone this year

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15

Christmas is for everyone

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16

A precarious past doesn’t prevent a powerful future

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17

How to deal with doubt and disbelief

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18

Under every rough exterior is a brother or sister

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19

Are you giving the same grace you’ve received?

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20

What happens when you don’t like where God sends you?

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21

Are you giving all you have to give?

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22

Who does tradition stop you from reaching?

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23

Breaking down social barriers begins with you

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