Wounded Healers Part 2 – Moses: Week 6 Discussion Questions
1. What insights did you gain from the message this past Sunday? What was most helpful for you? What did you find uncomfortable?
2. As you reflect on the story of Moses, in what ways do you identify with him? In what ways do you feel distance or tension with him?
3. Can you describe a time or situation when a strength of yours actually worked out to be a weakness? Can you describe an instance where a weakness turned out to be a strength?
4. Read Exodus 1:6-22 and Exodus 2:1-10. How are women portrayed in these passage verses men? How is vulnerability depicted versus power? Given that these passages are part of a narrative describing God’s intentions to bring healing to humanity, what do they say about the nature of God? What do they say about the nature of humanity?
5. Read Exodus 2:11-22. In what ways is Moses courageous? In what ways is he fearful? What do you perceive to be Moses’ posture to injustice?
6. The speaker on Sunday suggested that Moses’ experience at the “burning bush” (Exodus 3:9-14) describes a way in which our weaknesses and brokenness can lead to greater union with God resulting in paradoxical strength:
- “Who AM I?” (v 11)—a crisis of being for human identity
- “I AM who I AM” (v 14)—God is defined as Being itself
- “I AM (will be) with you” (v 12)—the divine partnership with humanity
How do you relate to this personally?
- In what ways does your own sense of frailty and vulnerability open you up to the possibility of a deeper experience of union with God?
- In what ways is this deeper experience of God relevant to you in everyday life?
7. The following are just a few ways in which we can engage with vulnerability and weakness in our lives to find strength. Take some personal time to reflect on each of them (and any others that seem apparent to you) and determine ways in which you could be more embracing and accepting of weakness.
- Being yourself
- Being open
- Saying sorry
- Saying thank you
- Initiating love
- Risking failure
- Standing up to wrong
- Engaging in conflict
- Being nonviolent
- Letting go of control
- Giving away power
- Giving away credit
- Resisting the urge to prove ourselves
8. After the above personal reflection, spend some time as a group sharing your thoughts and feelings and then pray for one another.
Practice for the week: The Welcoming Prayer Many of our emotional reactions to personal weakness cause us to withdraw from it, deny or try to overcome it. The Welcoming Prayer is a prayer practice that helps us let go of these unhealthy responses while helping us to embrace more of God’s love instead of fear. Take some time this week to reflect on an area (or areas) in your own life where you feel a sense of weakness or inadequacy and practice this prayer.
Step 1: Awareness Sit quietly and notice how you are feeling. Focus and sink into your emotion. Go toward it rather than suppress or resist it. Stay with this step of noticing and sinking in until you really experience a connection to the feeling. You may feel it in your body, and it can help to place your hand there as a way of connecting with the emotion more deeply.
Step 2: Welcome Welcome this emotion as a friend that is going to help you discover something about yourself rather than as an enemy to be defeated. Don’t judge yourself but simply accept how you are feeling right now. Name the emotion and say, “Welcome… fear/anger/worry/sorrow etc.”. Repeat it and sit with the feeling until you experience a genuine sense of owning and accepting it in this moment. Then allow yourself to honestly discern where this emotion is coming from. Usually this is from a thwarted desire for one or more normal and basic human needs:
- Safety and security.
- Esteem and affection.
- Power and control.
Step 3: Let Go When you have allowed yourself to name and accept the feeling, let it go by saying, “God, I give you my fear/anger/worry/sorrow etc.” Consciously let go of:
- Your demand for safety and security.
- Your demand for esteem and affection.
- Your demand for power and control.
Sit quietly and invite God’s loving, affirming and totally accepting presence.