This study guide examines the tendency of men to identify much of their self-worth with their job, and how the solution may be to re-prioritize, putting God first in your life, and seeking to discover His purpose for you on Earth.
Message from Marsh: “May your personal walk with the Lord lead you to be transformed, renewed and blessed.”
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Men and Their Jobs
(www.mensgroup.org – “Original Study”)
PRAY: A suggested opening prayer for small group members or individuals to invite God to connect as we seek Him in His Word. Feel free to add your own words, “in prayer.”
Lord, my prayer is that you will enlighten me regarding my tendency to identify much of my self worth with my job. Help me to re-prioritize by making you first in my life and support me as I work to discover your purpose for me on earth. Amen.
READ: Scripture Reference (Genesis 3:17-19)
Key Verse Genesis 3:17 To Adam, “Because you listened to your wife and ate fruit from the tree about which I commanded you, ‘You must not eat from it,’ “Cursed is the ground because of you; through painful toil you will eat food from it all the days of your life.” Holy Bible - New International Version
Right from creation it is clear that for men, work is an important part of who we are. Scripture says clearly, we are to work hard and to toil. But for many men, their job or work life constitutes a large part of their awake hours and becomes “who they are”. The catch, a job or career can become an overriding force in how men define their self-worth and their value in life. Although a job is important, this is not God’s intention or purpose for us on earth.
By itself, a job is not good or bad. In fact, God understood that a job is very important for men. Regarding the importance of a job it says in Genesis 3:19, “By the sweat of your brow you will eat your food until you return to the ground, since from it you were taken; for dust you are and to dust you will return.” Holy Bible - New International Version
Did you know that God knows the truth about men? He knows the good and sometimes immoral part of our “natural nature”. He knows if our priorities aren’t “God centered”, we will wander without discovering our true purpose. God has a great plan and amazing purpose for each of us. When we keep God first in our heart, our true God given purpose will reveal itself.
REFLECT: Questions to help me pause and consider how the Scripture above applies to my life.
1. You are introduced to a new individual. How will you describe yourself? Do you talk about your job or do you talk about your faith, family and helping others? How would you change how you respond in the future based upon what you are learning so far in this study?
2. Making the assumption you are over indulged in work and your career, how are you going to change? How will you get your priorities straight beginning with putting God first? Be specific.
DISCIPLESHIP STUDY QUESTIONS:
Three discussion questions based on Scripture.
1. Exodus 36:2 says “Then Moses called Bezalel, Oholiab, and every skilled person to whom the Lord had given ability and who were willing to come and do the work”. Holy Bible – New International Version. What does this Scripture tell you about using your God given abilities and skills? What do you believe are your God given abilities and how can you best apply them at work, with your family, and in helping others?
2. Leviticus 23:3 and Deuteronomy 5:12. These two Scriptures deal with work and the Sabbath. After reading these two Scriptures, do they describe your current lifestyle and how you lead your family? If not, what changes are you going to make in the next few weeks to honor God and lead your family as a Christian man? Be specific in your answer.
3. Read Ephesians 1: 9-12. Think what the following words in 1:11 mean to you, “In him we were also chosen, having been predestined according to the plan of him who works out everything in conformity with the purpose of his will,” Holy Bible – New International Version. Do you believe this? Do you know God’s purpose for you? If you don’t know God’s purpose for you, pray that God will help you in your journey of discovery.
An “application challenge” for you to put into practice today or in the next week. I will pray daily for wisdom in discovering my true purpose as a man.
When someone asks me in the next week what I do, with God’s help I will concentrate on describing myself more in terms of my faith, my family and friends, my spouse and my concern for others. Then, I will talk about my job. What are three ideas that will help us to do this?
SUGGESTED CLOSING PRAYER:
Lord, please help me to reevaluate my life. Give me the strength and wisdom to re-prioritize by putting you first. When praying, I will be open to hearing your soft words of wisdom discovering the purpose of my work and my true purpose on earth.
All our Blessings,
Men’s Group Foundation, Inc.
(A mensgroup.org - “Original Study”)
Suggested Additional Resource:
Rick Warren’s “The Purpose Driven Life” is an excellent resource for you in this area. The book addresses the topic, “What on Earth Am I Here For?”
The web site for the book and other materials is: www.purposedrivenlife.com
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