A Community of Prayer // James 5:13-18; Acts 2:42-47

A New Testament church is a community of devoted followers of Jesus who pray – together! Not only is prayer a common practice for common life, but it’s also a means of powerful transformation and restoration. The Kingdom of God is made real and breaks into darkness when the community of the faithful come together and prays over hardships, illness, and sin. A community of prayer is not a community with good sentiments, but a community with real power.

Passages referenced in today’s podcast:

Acts 2:42-47
James 5:13-18
Matthew 6:7-13
1 Kings 17-18

Questions for Discussion:

  1. Do you have a story of a time when you have seen the power of prayer at work among followers of Jesus? Write it down in three or four sentences and plan to share it.
  2. How can we as a community continue to make prayer a central practice? What might you change or improve?
  3. Do you have a hardship, illness, or sin that needs to be shared or confessed? Who should you reach out to this week and ask for prayer?
A Community of Prayer // James 5:13-18; Acts 2:42-47 // November 12, 2019

Listen or watch past teachings, learn more about Restoration Church in Lake Zurich, or connect with us at http://restorationlz.org.

A Community that Feasts // Acts 2:42; 1 Corinthians 10:16-17

The early church loved to eat together! But their feasts were more than after-service potlucks for the purpose of socializing. For them, table fellowship was a tangible expression of the gospel and the presence of Christ among them, rooted in the historical roots of God’s redemptive plan for all people. This week, we’re examining the practice of “breaking bread” together and why – in its purest form – is the central, unifying participatory act of creating and cultivating authentic fellowship and worship in a discipleship community.

Passages referenced in today’s podcast:

Acts 2:42-47
1 Corinthians 10:16-17
Exodus 12
Luke 22:7-20
Revelation 19:19
Genesis 1:29-30

Questions for Discussion:

  1. What is one new thing you learned today that you could share with someone else?
  2. How should understanding “table fellowship” reshape someone’s view of and participation in community?
  3. How could we as Restoration Church (or any community of disciples) grow in our practice of making the gospel visible, shared, and experienced at the table with others?
A Community that Feasts // Acts 2:42; 1 Corinthians 10:16-17 // November 5, 2019

Listen or watch past teachings, learn more about Restoration Church in Lake Zurich, or connect with us at http://restorationlz.org.

A Community as Fellowship // 1 John 1:1-7, Acts 2:42-47

(Updated with the correct audio.)

This week, we continue a closer look at the New Testament church and what it means to be a community devoted “to the fellowship” (Acts 2:42). What is biblical fellowship and what are the theological implications for sharing life with others? And more importantly, how does the gospel intersect with our understanding of this new life together in community as a means of restoring life with God and others?

Questions for Discussion:

  1. How might your “common life” with God have implications on your “common life” with other believers?
  2. What are the common barriers to participating in the fellowship with the body of Christ?
  3. How can we as a church community become a model fellowship for others?
A Community as Fellowship // 1 John 1:1-7 // October 29, 2019

Everyday Leadership that Changes the World // James 3

Gospel movements are sustained by everyday leaders. Our pastors, teachers, seminary professors all have an important place in teaching, equipping, and building up believers to participate in God’s redemptive plan for the world. But it’s the everyday leader – the peacemaker – who builds bridges and opens up opportunities for God to reveal Himself to others. Therefore, every believer is an everyday leader in gospel-movements. The following is a message given to the Village Church of Barrington (Barrington, IL) on October 13, 2019 by Pastor Matt.

Everyday Leadership that Changes the World // James 3

Traditions and Commands // Mark 7:1-23

“The way of Jesus is to give priority to the biblical command over the tradition.”

The problem of rethinking church is that it has the potential to become a scary and upsetting endeavor. Everything is put on the table and questioned when we get serious about seeing our faith, the church, and the definition of what it means to be a follower of Jesus exclusively through the lens of Scripture.

Traditions & Commands // Mark 7:1-23 // February 28, 2019

Disciple-Multiplying // Acts 1:6-8

“The Kingdom becomes a movement when disciples multiply.”

In this episode, learn what it’s going to take to re-ignite a Kingdom-movement in North America and how Restoration Church seeks to join Christ in His mission for the world. WATCH this week’s message from Pastor Matt on “Disciple-Multiplying” from our church-defining series, “Re:Defined”.

Reflection Questions:

  1. Do I see myself as having a role in the fulfillment of the Kingdom of God? What might that role be?
  2. Schedule some time in silence and solitude (20-30 minutes is ideal). Invite the Holy Spirit to speak to you on the topic of disciple-multiplying. Then listen. At the conclusion of your time with the Lord, what might you need to confess, repent of, change, or begin doing to be obedient to God’s will?
Disciple-Multiplying // Acts 1:6-8 // February 12, 2019

Disciple-Sending // John 17:18

“The Kingdom expands when disciples are sent.”

In this episode, learn how Restoration Church seeks to be a training center for disciples that share in the mission of Christ as messengers of the gospel. In other words, we are “messengers on mission”.

Reflection Questions:

  1. Do you see yourself having the same mission on earth as Christ was given, to share the message of the gospel?
  2. What role have you played in the direct or indirect expansion of the Kingdom of God?
  3. Have you experienced a season of apathy (indifference) to seeing the Kingdom of God expand?
  4. How might you participate further in your calling as a ‘messenger on mission’?
  5. How can you be more aware of God’s on-going work in the world?
  6. Where is the Holy Spirit sending you as a ‘messenger on mission’?
Disciple-Sending // John 17:18 // February 5, 2019

Disciple-Making // Matthew 28:18-20

At Restoration Church we are inviting people to have an encounter with the living God by responding to the call to follow Jesus Christ and experience real spiritual transformation. We are everyday disciples of Jesus that are always learning, always growing, and always going.

Reflection Questions:

  1. Have I responded to the call to follow Jesus Christ?
  2. Have I experienced a real spiritual transformation?
  3. Have I been baptized?
  4. Am I apart of an authentic discipleship community?
  5. Am I sharing the gift of a new life in Jesus with others?
  6. Pray: “Lord, where do I need to grow, be challenged, or begin obeying all that you have commanded me?”

Related: “Where We Belong // John 3:1-8”

Disciple-Making // Matthew 28:18-20 // January 28, 2019

Keeping it Simple // Acts 2:42-47

What is Restoration Church and what makes us different? One word: “simplicity.”

This is the first message in our series “Re:Defined”, all about the mission and purpose of Restoration Church in Lake Zurich.

Related blog post: “The Four Essential Functions of the Church”

Reflection questions:

  1. What might the benefits of being part of a simple church be?
  2. What excites you about the idea of a simple church?
  3. What are your fears and anxieties of such an experience?
  4. How do you think the Lord might specifically challenge you in such an experience?
Keeping it Simple // Acts 2:42-47 // January 23, 2019