1.Do the statistics that were shared about gambling surprise you? Why or why not? Do you have any connection to gambling in your relationships or past like Pastor Roy shared?
2. Addictions affect our brain chemistry, giving us a rush of dopamine. God created this brain chemistry to help us physically and mentally and to help us experience pleasure and life to its fullest. How do you enjoy the experience of pleasure that God created for us while also guarding against counterfeit rushes and pleasures?
3. How did hearing the expanded list of behaviors connected to “wanting more” (overrating, sex, shopping, exercise, control and approval) help you understand this sin and compulsion better? Is there anything in your life that is in danger of being taken to the extreme?
4. Read 1 Timothy 6:6-10.
a. How do you know if you have a problem with discontentment or the love of money? What are the signs?
b. What is most impactful to you about these verses?
5. Read James 4:1-3
a. Are you surprised at the level of warning in these verses -- that wanting what you don’t have could lead to scheming, killing, jealousy, fighting and war? Is James over-reacting? Or are these serious consequences of discontentment visible in our world today?
b. How could readjusting our motives and turning to God to ask for what we want, be a remedy for extreme discontentment?
6. Pastor Roy shared: If you’re a Christian, are you sharing the good news of Jesus with others from a place of contentment? . . . . If you’re not doing these things, how can you give away what you yourself are not living?
a. Self-reflect on these questions. How would you answer these questions?
b. Do you believe that our witness is weaker when we are not finding full contentment in the gospel?
c. How can you cooperate with the Holy Spirit to shift to a place of contentment?
7. How might you need to respond to this sermon? Can you share with your group a shift or action you would like to embrace. Here are some possibilities:
a. Admit that you have downplayed the seriousness of gambling or discontentment or greed, or excused it before and ask God to change your attitude and words.
b. Repent of past or current sin in this area.
c. Share with a trusted friend an area of sin that you have been keeping secret.
d. Share with a family member or close friend what you have learned about the dangers of gambling and discontentment and warn them, educate them, pray for them, support them.
e. Learn more about Christian organizations that fight gambling and help addicts and find a way to support their work.
f. Stop trying to SELF-HELP your way to SELF-CONTROL. Turn it over to Jesus and embrace his grace, strength and victory.
g. Decrease your judgment against those who struggle with addiction and find a way to support them.
h. Celebrate and champion our Support & Recovery Program at church and find ways to specifically support it and spread the word about it to others.
i. Join Support & Recovery yourself to gain help and support.
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