By Robin C. Wilson
Fellowship – Snacks or a Meal (10 minutes with snacks; longer, obviously, if there is a meal).
Gathering Time (5-10 minutes). In pairs or groups of three, have participants answer, “What are some ways people describe you?” (i.e., appearance, personality, character, etc.) How are these descriptions accurate or inaccurate? How is the description of you incomplete?
Group Dialogue (Approximately 30 minutes). Read Genesis 1:1-2:4 and Matthew 28:16-20.
- Read Genesis 1:1-2:4 again. It might sound familiar to you, yet you might be surprised not to hear parts of the creation story that you thought were included in Genesis 1. In this account of the creation story, what do you learn about God?
- “When they saw him, they worshiped him; but some doubted” (Matthew 28:17, NRSV). Close to the end of Matthew’s gospel, we find that there are doubting worshipers, yet they are still given the Great Commission by Jesus…(Matthew 28:19-20). What does this tell you about God? What does this tell you about followers of Christ?
- The Planning Worship section for Trinity Sunday says, “We worship a God who came down like fire and burned a mission into our hearts.” What comes to mind when considering a mission burned into your heart? How might it look to be ready to give your all to accomplish this mission for God’s glory?
- The Preaching Notes say, “It is always our inclination to explain God on Trinity Sunday. Resist that inclination. All the metaphors ultimately fall short and serve only to reduce God into accessible bites that we can snack on like popcorn.” What metaphors have you heard to describe God? Why do you think people struggle to explain our Triune God?
- Have someone in the group read Matthew 28:16-20 aloud. How do you hear Jesus’ directive in your life today? How do you hear it differently for clergy or laity? How do you hear it for your community of faith collectively?
Prayer (10 minutes). Share prayer requests and respond appropriately.
Sending Forth (2 minutes). End with the following prayer, a similar prayer, or the Lord’s Prayer:
Triune God, we offer our prayers of thanksgiving that you are beyond our understanding. We confess our inadequacy in grasping the fullness of your glory and our tendency to doubt the fullness of your power. Continue to call us as doubting worshipers to be your disciples, taking the commandments of your Son to heart. Amen.
Rev. Robin C. Wilson has served as the lead pastor at four large membership churches in Alabama and currently serves as the pastor of First United Methodist Church in Phenix City, Alabama. A graduate of Vanderbilt University and Duke Divinity School, Wilson is often found working with seminary students through Candler School of Theology's Teaching Parish program, writing and recording bible studies with Abingdon, and leading retreats. She is a proud, life-long United Methodist.