GETTING STARTED HOMEWORK
Facilitator Guide for Week 1
The primary objectives for Week 1 are to begin to develop close relationships among the participants and to begin the homework discussions.
Note: The blank space following each agenda number is for the facilitator to fill in the scheduled time for each agenda item. For example, if your class begins at 7:00, #1 would read 7:00, #2 would read 7:05, and so forth. This is designed to help you monitor the time so that the class will end punctually.
1. (5 minutes)
Open in prayer.
2. (5 minutes)
Each person individually recites from memory:
“For My thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways My ways, declares the Lord. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways, and My thoughts than your thoughts” (Isaiah 55: 8-9).
3. (20 minutes)
Ask each person to take 5-6 minutes to introduce themselves, beginning with a facilitator. Ask them to share how they were introduced to Jesus Christ, what they do for a living, and something about their family. If someone is too brief, ask additional questions to provide an opportunity to learn more about the participant.
4. (30 minutes)
Begin the Homework discussion.
1. What was the most helpful information you learned from reading Your Money Counts (or listening to the Your Money Counts audio book), and what two practical principles from the book can you apply now?
Read Isaiah 38:1
2. What does this verse communicate about the importance of having your house in order?
Note: COMPASS comments, in brackets, will follow many of the questions. Following the COMPASS comments there is a space for the facilitator’s answer.
[Someday we will all die, and we have the responsibility to honour the Lord and to love those we leave behind by putting our house in order.]
3. What do you hope to accomplish by taking this study?
Read Isaiah 55:8-9
4. Based on this passage, do you think God’s financial principles will differ from how most people handle money? What do you think would be the greatest difference?
[God’s economy operates on entirely different principles. Most people do not believe He plays a role in finances, but Scripture reveals He has the dominant role.]
Assemble your important documents for "The Document Organiser”
The purpose of the Document Organiser is to gather and organise all your important papers in one place. At this time, please assemble all your important documents. If you discover you are missing any, try to obtain them promptly. It is important to have these files and document organized so they can be easily retrieved.
Download the Document Organiser
5. What did you learn by gathering your documents?
Read or listen to the Getting Started Notes.
6. What in the Notes did you find especially helpful? Why?
1. (5 Minutes)
Play the Set Your House in Order (Week 1) DVD (or play the video at the bottom of this lesson) and answer any questions.
2. (10 Minutes)
Review what to do for next week
Complete the Homework. (Remind everyone to do the homework daily.)
Review the calendar to determine if any regularly scheduled classes fall on a holiday. If there are any conflicts, please reschedule at this meeting.
Schedule a social two to four weeks after the last class.
If there are participants not using the App (those using the hardcopy workbook) remind them to visit www.compass1.org.au and click on “Small Group Studies,” then Set Your House in Order to access any tools they may need for the coming week.
3. (10 Minutes)
Complete the Prayer Logs. Participants should have one Prayer Log for each person or married couple, including themselves. Take prayer requests, and note them in the Prayer Logs.
4. (5 Minutes)
End in prayer.
GETTING STARTED NOTES
Please read or listen to the notes after completing Homework question 5.
We were completely unprepared for what happened during the meeting. Bev and I had been asked to meet with Nancy, a recent widow, to review her finances and give advice.
During our time together, she experienced dramatic emotional swings. Initially, it was grief as she told us about the sudden death of her husband of twenty years. Then anger marked Nancy’s face as she explained that her husband had handled their finances and had never discussed with her their situation. She had no clue whether they had savings or how much debt they might have accumulated. She didn't know the location of their bank accounts or even the names of their tax preparer and insurance agent.
Finally, she was gripped by fear. As a widow of three children, Nancy had left the work force ten years earlier to stay at home with their special-needs child. She didn't know whether her husband carried life insurance, so she was afraid of losing their home and wasn't sure they would be able to make ends meet.
One of the purposes of the Set Your House in Order study is to help people gather and organise all their financial information in one place. This will help married couples improve their communication. You will save time retrieving information, and if your spouse should die, you will not face the uncertainty Nancy experienced.
The Bible encourages us to get our house in order and become organised. For example, Isaiah 38:1 tells us, “In those days Hezekiah became ill and was at the point of death. The prophet Isaiah son of Amoz went to him and said, ‘This is what the Lord says: Put your house in order, because you are going to die’” (NIV). And 1 Corinthians 14:40 plainly says, “But let all things be done properly and in an orderly manner.” 1 Corinthians 14:33 reinforces this by revealing, “God is not a God of confusion . . .”
This study will transform your life and finances as you learn what the God of the universe says about handling money and becoming more organised. This study is for everyone—whether single or married, whether young or old, whether you earn a lot or a little.
WARNING – IT’S GOING TO BE DIFFERENT!
The way most people handle money stands in sharp contrast to God’s financial principles. Isaiah 55:8-9 puts it like this: “‘For My thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways My ways,’ declares the Lord.
‘For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways and My thoughts than your thoughts.’” The most significant difference between the two is that the Bible reveals God is closely involved with our finances. Many people fail to realise it because He has chosen to be invisible to us and to operate in the unseen, supernatural realm.
THE BIBLE AND MONEY
When my former business partner, Jim Seneff, asked me to join him in a study of the Bible to find out what God says about handling money, I have to admit, I was clueless! I had no idea that the Bible says so much about money or that it is important to God. And I had no inkling that learning what He says about it was going to radically change my life—all for the better.
We were astonished to discover that the Bible contains 2,350 verses dealing with how to handle money and possessions. God says so much about it for two reasons.
The first I discovered by accident. Every time I applied one of the financial truths from the Bible, I noticed that it improved my relationship with Jesus Christ; I grew closer to Him. It had direct application to my daily walk with my Lord and Saviour.
Jesus told a parable that illustrates this dynamic. A master entrusted some money to three of his servants and then went on a trip. When he returned, he told the two servants who had handled his money wisely, “Well done, good and faithful servant; you were faithful with a few things, I will put you in charge of many things; enter into the joy of your master” (Matthew 25:21).
Did you notice the last part of that verse? It says, “. . . enter into the joy of your master.” I hadn’t realised that how I handled money could have a significant impact on the intimacy of my relationship with Christ. If I handle money His way, it will help me know the Lord better. If I don’t, it will damage our relationship. And there is nothing on this planet more important than knowing Him well and experiencing His joy.
The second reason God says so much about money is because He wants to equip us to be smart with it. He realises that all of us will face challenges with money, and because He loves us so deeply, He wants to equip us to manage it well.
This Week's Video: