By Dan Lentz
1. What is your typical response when someone harshly questions the words you say?
• Anger: How dare anyone question me?
• Rejection: Because I am doubted, I am not loved.
• Indifference: I couldn’t care less what others think or say.
• Reflection: I wonder why people would question me and I wonder if they are correct?
• Protection: I would never say anything that someone might question.
Read Acts 7:51–8:1.
2. Stephen was judged harshly and ultimately martyred for what he said. What are some of the things he said that made those opposing him so angry? How would you paraphrase Stephen’s comments in your own words?
3. What does it mean to “resist the Holy Spirit”? In what ways do we tend to resist the Holy Spirit today?
4. How can we, like Stephen, stay strong and forgiving in the face of opposition?
5. Distribute paper to each group member. Ask members to write their first names vertically on the paper. Then ask each one to write a prayer request that starts with each letter of his or her name. Example:
S—Start reading my Bible more consistently.
U—Use more kindness when responding to my family members.
E —Earn extra income for the holidays.
6. Share your prayer requests with the group and spend time as a group praying for each other.
Dan Lentz works for the Small Group Network in Whitestown, Indiana.