Keeping It To Yourself

by May 6, 2018Cultivate, Sermon

In a culture where people clamor for attention and recognition, those secure in Christ have no need of the spotlight. One discipline in particular helps us give both the credit and glory to God. Even when we do good things, we can escape a look-at-me mindset by trading instant gratification for a future reward from God. Grow closer to God through the spiritual practice of secrecy.

Discussion Questions

How would you define the word, “secret?” Are you good at keeping secrets? Why do some people have a hard time keeping a secret?

Seems like more than at any other time, people are clamoring for attention and recognition. How does social media fuel a look-at-me mindset? What is often behind a craving for affirmation and notoriety?

Jesus singled out the Pharisees as bad examples. Read Matthew 23:5-7. What did the Pharisees do to get noticed by others? What do you typically do to get noticed or praised by others?

Read Matthew 6:1-6, 16-18. What instructions does Jesus give about good deeds, praying and fasting? How do we have a reward when we do things to be seen by others? What reward are we forfeiting from God if we are doing things only to be seen by others?

Can you think of ways you have benefited from the secret acts of another? What are ways you have secretly served others? (Don’t tell anyone or it’s no longer a secret!)

How does the spiritual practice of secrecy become a way to trust God more fully?

Worship Matters

It’s easy to come into a church building, sing songs, listen to a message, and walk away thinking this is all there is to worshiping God. But what if God is telling us that worship is so much more than that? In Part 8 of Cultivate we explore what true worship really...

More Than A Conversation

Think of a list of spiritual practices and close to the top you’ll usually find prayer. Prayer is foundational—even expected on a checklist of spiritual behaviors. But anyone honestly experimenting with prayer has found it difficult, rewarding and even confusing. Try...

Be Near

God wants to be near us. He wants to spend time with us and to teach us how to become the people He wants us to be. But for many of us that’s not our routine experience. Today we’ll talk about how to experience God’s presence in an amazingly powerful way. We’ll talk a...

Choose Your Service

Serving isn’t glamorous. Giving of our time and energy can seem like an inconvenience. But it is never a waste of time. In God’s economy, the goodness we experience in our lives is always greatly multiplied when we choose to follow him and walk in the good works he...

Dig Deeper

The Bible has the power to transform our hearts and our lives when we engage with it because it connects us with the very words of God. Just like anything worth learning, to truly know it, we must not only read it, but, study and reflect on it. Going deeper takes more...

Peace In Quiet

The noise and pace of life can be both intoxicating and maddening. No wonder God reminds us that we can’t cultivate the soil of our lives and grow in Him at dizzying speeds. Growing requires slowing. That’s why the spiritual disciplines of solitude and silence—while...

Grow Up

We receive new life the moment we believe Jesus for it. But in order for that life to be experienced to the fullest we must cooperate with God in our spiritual growth. No one grows passively. When we cultivate the soil of our lives through deliberate, spiritual...