Group Plan - Favor

Message Text: Luke 1:26-38
Message Theme: You can seek to secure the favor of God or you can receive the favor of God. It's your choice. But favor cannot be earned. Favor is the gift of God.

Group Discussion Questions

  1. Can you remember a time (as a child or perhaps more recently) when you were made to feel that you were “out of favor” with someone?
    Share your experience with that as well as when someone (perhaps a teacher, friend, relative, etc.) made you feel that you were very special to them.
  2. Read Read Luke 1:26-45.
    What stands out in this passage?
    What are you surprised by?
  3. When you hear the word "favor," what comes to mind?
  4. How were you taught to gain the "favor" of people as a child?
    How did you seek it from your parents?
    From friends?
    From God?
  5. Who does our culture define as "highly favored"?
    How does that compare with Mary in Luke 1?
  6. As a pregnant, unwed mother, how hard must it have been for Mary to believe she was "favored" as she faced the community's judgment in Nazareth?
    What lesson should we take from this reality?
  7. What difference would it make if you really believed you were "favored" by God?
    What narratives would need to change to truly believe that?
  8. What are your assumptions about Mary based on what you've learned about her up to this point in your life?
    Based on this story, were your assumptions challenged or confirmed?
  9. In preparation for next week's sermon, encourage your people to read Luke 1:46-56 this week.