07: Living Holy Lives – Thought Starters
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Introduction: Do you know anyone who seems to have lived a holy life? What was that person like? When you saw that person, did you wish more than anything that you could be holy like him or her? To be honest, how many of us live perfect, holy lives every wakeful minute? What are the consequences of living … [Click to read more …]

06: Friends Forever – Thought Starters
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The following thoughts and questions are provided to help Sabbath school teachers and others in a small group discussion of the lesson for the week. [Thought Questions for Friends Forever August 8, 2012] 1. The bond of friendship. Is there any doubt about the affection Paul felt towards the believers in Thessalonica? What does Paul anticipate more than … [Click to read more …]

05: The Apostolic Example – Thought Starters
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The Dwindling Church “We simply must DO something to increase our membership,” Angie said. Sylvia shrugged. “Or get more of our inactive members to show up for church–“ “–With an offering.” Angie broke in. Fred was peeling an orange as he entered the living room from the kitchen.  “What’s wrong with belonging to a small church?” … [Click to read more …]

04: Joyous and Thankful – Thought Starters
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Thankful Adventists Once upon a time there was a mid-sized Seventh-day Adventist church with about 150 people attending every Sabbath. As the years rolled on, certain factions developed within the church. There were the hard-working, rough-talking folks. And the genteel ones who could wear a spotless white suit bearing a white orchid and look with … [Click to read more …]

03: Thessalonica in Paul’s Day – Thought Starters
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“Mom! Dad! Where’s everybody?” Ariston let his sandals clack against the hard surface of the walkway as he dashed through the Thessalonian house where he lived with his family. “Over here!” His mother called from the corner of the house where she was mixing dough for flat bread. “What is so urgent?” “Can I go see … [Click to read more …]

02: Preserving Relationships – Thought Starters
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A journey through time “Would you look at that? A perfect illustration of the god particle.” Fred held up the second week’s lesson of the Bible Study Guide and pointed to the picture of two hands reaching for each other. “Whatever are you talking about?” Sherry said, her eyebrows lifting toward her hairline. “Whatever in the world does … [Click to read more …]

01: The Gospel Comes to Thessalonica – Thought Starters
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Salina, Robert, and Kim, three youngsters, aged five, seven, and eight were ready to swing in the swings and play in the sandbox and take Rupert the dog for a walk. But it was pouring rain. Salina was still sniffling from a bad cold. Kim was pouting because she didn’t get two pieces of pie for … [Click to read more …]

11: Let the Church Know – Thought Starters
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My first job after graduating from Walla Walla College was in the public relations department of the General Conference. Now, nearly 50 years later, I am self-employed. I joke about how far I’ve fallen in my career, but it is a joke. One of my main tasks at the “GC” was helping to produce a periodical called Tell.” … [Click to read more …]

10: A Love Response – Thought Starters
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Melody and Stewart Part 2 “Good morning, class,” Stewart said after the general greetings and opening prayer had been shared. “We’re going to do something today we’ve never done before.” He looked around. “Let’s start with Matthew 18:19 and 20.” Bible pages rustled as class members turned to the required text. “Go therefore and make … [Click to read more …]

09: Releasing into Ministry – Thought Starters
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“Mel, I’m going to throw these bossy lesson guides into the trash. They aren’t helping me a bit!” “What? That’s a ridiculous thing for a Sabbath school teacher to say. I think these lessons are great.” “But they’re written like a set of management lessons to give to managers at work.”  “Except the work is on a … [Click to read more …]