Study Guide: Returning Love

Sunday May 16, 2010 | Scott Boren

Focus Scripture:

Brief Summary:

God's love for us is overwhelming! But that's not the whole story. As we receive God's love we are able to return that love to God and others.

Extended Summary:

Beginning with the Great commandment (Matt. 22:37-38), Scott Boren reminded us that in addition to God’s scandalous love for us, there’s a role for us to play too. We are to return that love back to God and to others. Scott reminded us that if we view the Great Commandment as a contract it can feel like a burden rather than an invitation to dance the beautiful dance of life with God.

Scott contrasted two “rhythms” or ways of navigating the dance floor. One he called the “conformed rhythm” the other the “transformed rhythm”. The conformed rhythm consists of the patterns of this world (Romans 12:2). Some examples Scott offered were: working too much, being too busy, worrying too much, stress, and ignoring relationships.

The transformed rhythm consists of the following: renewing of the mind, an alternative pattern, a different dance, a vastly different dance partner (God!), a dance that fits love.

Life is about learning to dance to the transformed rhythm. But this takes practice! Scott gave lots of examples of ways we can practice dancing to the transformed rhythm. Here are some of them:

Reflection Questions:

  1. What stood out to you most from this message and the supporting texts?
  2. Read the Great Commandment out loud. As a group reflect on how we tend to return love to God. Does the way we love God feel more like a contract or a covenant?
  3. Consider Scott’s distinction between the conformed rhythm and transformed rhythm. If you think of your relationship to God as a dance, does it feel more like a “conformed rhythm” or a “transformed rhythm” that you are dancing in? Why?
  4. What ways could we as a group practice dancing with God in the “transformed rhythm” of living life together?