Peace: Week 1. Sermon Prep Mark 4:35-41

He is our PEACE

The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, 23 gentleness, and self-control. ~Galatians 5:22-23

READ Mark 4:35-41

What sent the disciples into the storm that scared them?

In what were the disciples putting their trust? 

What made them secure? At what point in the story did that security begin? 

What do these verses teach you about what peace is and what it looks like? 

In what do you put your trust?

READ Ephesians 2:12-14

What does peace look like in these verses? 


In these verses, what provides security? How does this source provide security?

Consider a person or people group that you identify LEAST with. What wall stands between "us" and them? What would it look like for Christ to break down that dividing wall? 


Is these presence of God ever apparent to you? What is that experience like? Does it bring you peace?

Brother Lawrence is famous for "Practicing the Presence of God." How would your daily life look different if you were seeking out and attending to God's presence in and around you?  

How do these passages inform you understanding of the fruit of the spirit? Do you feel like your life if bearing the fruit of peace [this is not an invitation to be critical, but to be attentive - to see the life of Christ growing in and through you]? 



Sermon Prep. for Sept. 7: Ephesians 2.1-10: Saved by Grace

This coming Sunday, we will re-enter our sermon series on Ephesians. If you would like to prepare for Sunday's sermon, you are welcome to use the below study guide as a resource. This guide will also instruct our community group discussions. To join a group, contact

Ephesians 2.1-10: Saved by grace


Getting to know you: Recount a memorable walk or hike you’ve taken that involved following a guide. What was the setting like? What was your guide like? What made the walk memorable?


Pray that God would open "the eyes of your innermost self" (Eph. 1:17) to God's light.


Day 1:

Getting to know the Bible: Read Ephesians 2.1-10

Write down your initial impressions.

What one word sticks out to you most in this passage?

You and the Bible: From what do you need Christ to save you?

Try sketching a picture of you traveling on a road based on these verses.


Day 2:

Getting to know the Bible: Read Isaiah 30.18-22

Based on this passage, how do you think God feels about showing you grace and mercy?

You and the Bible: How does this passage make you feel about walking in God’s way?


Day 3:

Getting to know the Bible: Read Psalm 1

Express verse 3 in your own way [whatever suits you: write, draw, graph, sing . . .]

You and the Bible: How does this passage make you feel about the idea of walking in God’s way?


Day 4:

Getting to know the Bible: Read Luke 7.36-50

If Jesus says that in serving “the least of these,” we serve Him (Matt. 25:40), how might the woman in this story show us how to serve “the least of these?”

You and the Bible: How much have you been forgiven?


Day 5:

Getting to know the Bible: Re-Read Ephesians 2.1-10

Does a new one-word stick out to you in this passage after spending time in the others? What’s the difference between works-based-salvation and salvation-based-works?

You and the Bible: Why were you made alive? For what purpose(s)? (vs. 10)

Ramping up to re-enter the Ephesians Sermon Series

Starting in September, we will re-enter our Ephesians sermon series. You can catch up on Dan's sermons on Ephesians 1 here under "Letter to the Ephesians." And/or you can spend some time in Ephesians 1 for yourself using the following guide. 

Use as much or as little of this study guides as you find edifying. You might consider breaking up each of the following 4 sessions over 4 days of study.

Consider praying Ephesians 1:16-29 repeatedly for your community group as you anticipate (re)joining them this fall.

To learn more about our group offerings visit our Community Groups page. To sign up for a community group, please email Zoë Reyes, Community Development Director, at zoefaithreyes at with the type of group you're interested in, the nights your available and/or a particular group leader you'd like to join. 

Session One: Ephesians

Read through the whole book of Ephesians to get an overview. Just read.

Session Two: The Wealth of His Grace

Read Ephesians 1:1-10

1) How do we form our identity in Christ? 

2) What has God delivered you from in particular? What would your life look like without the work He is doing in and for you now and throughout your life? [see vs. 4-10, esp. vs. 7] 

3) We aren't chosen for our own sake, but for the sake of what God wants to accomplish through us. In what ways might God want to bless (or how is he already blessing) others through you or your Christian community? ( N. T. Wright. Ephesians)

3b) For further study:
Read Genesis 12:1-8.  How do you see this passage relating to what Paul is talking about here in Ephesians? How do you see this passage relating to you personally?

4) What is God’s plan? (see vs. 10)

5) What do you learn in these verses about Jesus and our relationship to Him? 

Session Three: Inheritance and the Spirit

Read Ephesians 1:11-14

1) Is there a particular statement that you find particularly thought provoking or penetrating?

2) What is our promised inheritance (v. 11)? (N. T. Wright. Ephesians)

3) What do you learn in these verses about Jesus and our relationship to Him?

Session Four: Knowing the Power of the King

Read Ephesians 1:15-23

1) What do you learn in these verses about Jesus and our relationship to Him?

2) Paul doesn't imagine that all Christians will automatically be able to recognize the power of God. It will take, as he says in verse 17, a fresh gift of wisdom, of coming to see things people don't normally see. And this in turn will come about through knowing Jesus and having what Paul calls "the eyes of your innermost self" opened to God's light. What should and shouldn't using this power look like in our daily lives? How have you experienced this power in your life? (N. T. Wright. Ephesians)

3) What is the church?

4) What does it mean to be the fullness of the one who fills all in all?