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Dear Leader

This is our last LG meeting for term 2. Thank you for serving your LG members so faithfully. May the Lord refresh you during the break (Isaiah 40:31). Life Groups start again on the 18th of July. Our next leaders meeting which will be on the 24th of July. It will be right in the middle of winter so we will be serving soup and bread that evening. Please diarise the date and aim to be at the Leaders meeting at 7pm so that we can have a longer time of fellowship.

Opening Prayer:
You may want to start off the LG meeting with an open time of prayer focusing on prayers of thanksgiving and praise to the Lord.

Worship:

Icebreaker
What are your plans for the holidays?

#NT260 Check in:

Read 1 Corinthians 4:1-2 in a few different versions of the Bible and discuss as a group.
Topic: The Prophetic

Scripture reading
1 Corinthians 14:1-3, 31

1. Faith and Prophecy
It is important to remember that we are not led by prophecy, we are led by the Holy Spirit. But prophecy is life giving, and should be desired, sought after, and used to strengthen one other. Words are powerful, and it is important to speak life and hope.

Romans 12:6 says that "We have different gifts according to the grace given us. If a man's gift is prophesying let him use it in proportion to his faith."

We get faith in 5 different ways:
- Measure given to you
- Hearing the word
- Fasting and prayer
- Gift of faith
- Praying in the Holy spirit to build up your most holy faith.

In 2 Timothy 1:6 we are encouraged to stir up the gift that is within us.
Discussion 1: What do you think about the importance of faith in exercising the gift of prophesy?

2. The purpose of prophecy
The purpose of prophecy is to encourage and strengthen (more than direction and correction). When you prophecy over a person it should result in them loving God more. God wants us to see people the way He sees them. We need to have Gods heart for people then we can prophecy over them.
Read Judges 6:11-16 Example of angel speaking identity over Gideon.

Discussion 2: What impact did a word from the Lord have on Gideon? How can prophecy help us see ourselves through God's eyes? What impact have the prophetic words spoken over you had on you?
3. Hearing God's voice
You are a spirit being because you are made in Gods image. You are a spirit, living in a body, and you have a soul. Because God is spirit he speaks from His Spirit to our spirits. God loves to speak to His people.

Reflect on how Samuel as a boy heard God's voice in the temple. And on how Saul heard the Lord's voice on the road to Damascus.

God speaks through His Word, through the Holy Spirit, and through His people. As children of God we need to become increasingly sensitive to the voice of the Lord so that we can walk in obedience to His leading, and so that we can prophecy into the lives of others and encourage their hearts.
Discussion 3: Ask the group to share testimonies of times where the Lord spoke to them? What did he say? What did they do? Also ask them to share of times where they have had a prophetic word for someone.
4. Growing in the Prophetic
We grow in the prophetic when we are sensitive to the manifest presence of the Lord. It is also helpful to pray in the spirit on a regular basis and to spend time in God's Word. The more we do this our senses become trained and tuned in to hearing His voice.

In John 16:12 Jesus said "I have much more to say to you more than you can now bear, but when He the comforter comes He will guide you in all truth."

In our lives there are things we are not ready to hear certain things. Jesus realised that the disciples could only hear so much. The Holy Spirit would guide them in increased revelation. Our relationship with the Holy Spirit is so important.

Whenever God gives you something there is always a fight involved. God told Paul he would go to Jerusalem, yet he encountered great hardships and even a shipwreck before getting there. Remember how Jesus prophesied over Peter and told him that the devil has asked to sift you. But I have prayed that your faith would not fail. And when you come back encourage your brethren. Peter when through the process of denying Christ and great distress before becoming a pillar in the early church.

When the devil comes after you He is after your faith. He says "What must I do to you to make you doubt God and His love for you." Yet the Lord turns situations around for our good. We need storms. Storms are our friends. They make us stronger and help us exercise our faith. So don't complain when things are tough.

Discussion 4: Ask if anyone wants to share a testimony of receiving a prophetic word but how they went through difficulties before it was fulfilled.
5. Testing and receiving prophetic words received
Prophetic word are powerful. When we receive a prophetic word we need to take note of the small details. For example Jesus said to Peter "When you are old others will lead you where you do not want to go". So when he was imprisoned and threatened with death he could sleep peacefully because he believed what Jesus said to him, i.e. that he would grow old.

The Bible says we mustn't despise prophecy. But we do need to test the prophecies we receive.

5 signs to check for:

- The prophecy must never contradict the Bible.
- I must have a witness in my spirit.
- The peace of God.
- The prophecy should confirm something I have heard before.
- Prophecies are often accompanied with a sign like a word of knowledge, where the person prophesies and says something about us that they couldn't have known unless the Lord had spoken to them.

We need to receive prophecies that meet the above criteria. We need to pray for the next steps to take and then follow the Lord in obedience. It is possible to hinder a prophecy that you receive through disobedience.

But remember there are seasons and chapters in our lives. We need to discern the seasons and times of God. And then obey in the right season that he wants us to move.
Discussion 5: What are your comments on the importance of testing prophecy and then receiving the prophecy and walking in obedience?
Prayer ministry:
Allow for a time of prayer ministry and prophecy. The best place to grow and practice in the prophetic is in the safe context of a life group.

Regards

Bruce Taylor
LIFE GROUPS PASTOR

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