Sunday's Reflection Questions:
- What is your connection to your biological family? How has your ancestry impacted the faith you have today?
- In what ways can the church be a family to those whose experience of actual family has been disappointing?
- What are specific things we can do to honor those who came before us?
This Week’s Text: Exodus 20.12
Teaching Link: Mom and Pop
Downloadable group discussion sheet: .pdf
For Further Study: Even unto Death: The Heroic Witness of The Sixteenth-Century Anabaptist
By John Christian Wenger; The Story of John and Janneken van Munstdorp
Questions for Groups or Reflection:
Some people have a different relationship to their extended family. On a scale of 1-10, how connected do you feel to your ancestral roots? How important to you have older members of your family been?
Share something that you learned from one of your grandparents or great grandparents. Is there a time whenguidance from them helped you in a specific life situation?
Read Exodus 20.12. How have you heard this commandment in the past?
The hebrew word here is kabed. It carries the idea of weight. In this sense, what is the difference between honor and obey?
To honor your parents in the world of ancient Israel, meant to honor your ancestors, to tie yourself back to the heritage handed down generation to generation. Specifically, this meant the promise given to Abraham and passed down to his descendants-the promise that through him and his family all nations and peoples would be blessed. To dishonor your parents meant to be "cut off from your people." To be separated from the covenant.
So family, in the biblical sense, goes beyond what we in modern times think of as family. Family becomes the people or "household of God." (Ephesians 2.17-20)
What are some examples of families today that don't look "traditional?" How can the church be "family" to them?
As members of the "household of God," we are called to give priority to it above all else, even our earthly families. How do Jesus' words in Luke 14.25-27 make you feel? How can we live up to this? Is it even possible?
Read The Story of John and Janneken van Munstdorp. What emotions does this story of discipleship create in you?
Read and discus the reflection questions from last Sunday at the top of this post.