- You might not have been able to read through all of the notes for last week, but I wanted to add a new component this session to our Lifelines. That component is the AGAPE offering. In Biblical times, when the believers would gather, they would share a meal together, take communion, and then take up an offering for the needy. I would like to add this offering to our Lifelines. If you did it last week, I don't think any of the offerings were turned in. If you did not start this last week, let's get it started this week.
- Explain the Agape offering is for the needy of the church with special attention given to widows.
- Take up the offering.
- At the end of the night, the coordinator and facilitator need to count the money. Write down the total amount on a sheet of paper and both of you sign the paper as a way of saying that you agree with the total amount of the offering. Then on Sunday, one of you place the piece of paper along with the offering into an offering envelope that you can get from behind the church pews. Seal the envelope and mark it on the outside "Agape."
TAKE TIME TO EXPLAIN WHY WE HAVE LIFELINES:
- It is important that each week, you remind people why these Lifelines are so important. Simply put the friendships we build in Lifelines help us stay connected to the church. As long as we are connected to the church, we will grow in our spirit, increase our faith, and have opportunities to help others do the same. We want everyone to begin to understand the great importance of these small groups.
- For those who were at the service this past Sunday, how would you describe the service when everyone began to share their testimonies?
- What effect do you think these testimonies had on those who were sharing their testimonies; on yourself; on others?
- Read Revelation 12:10-11. This Scripture is talking about the victory over the enemy of the saints of God. They triumphed over the enemy by the blood of the Lamb and the word of their testimony. Why do you think this Scripture does NOT say that they triumphed by their faith, but instead it is by their testimony?
FOR THE FACILITATOR TO SHARE
- Read Romans 10:10. Here, we also see that it is with our words that we declare our faith. It is through the declaration that we take ownership of our faith. We publicly make it known that we are followers of Christ. Without this declaration, we do not honor the Lord or give Him credit for what He has done in our life. Faith that does not honor the Lord is no faith at all. Testimonies give honor to the Lord. They declare His power, His love, His mercy, His miracles. All who hear it and the one who says it is strengthened in their faith. Their mindset is changed from fear to faith in their own situation. The Enemy has no power except to create doubt in our mind. Faith is power over the enemy. Testimony increases faith. Shouldn't we not make a decision to share testimonies of what God has done in our life, big and small, as often as possible? We will be blessed and so will those who hear.