Session 1: Love Is A Verb
1. If a young teenager asked you, "How possible is it for two people to stay happy together forever?"
How would you answer, and what reasons would you give for your answer?
How different is that from how you might have answered five years ago?
2. How realistic is it to hold out hope for that one romantic relationship that will stay full of passion and intimacy? How right is it?
3. Think of the relational habits promoted by our culture. Which ones have you noticed work against enduring love relationships?
4. When you recall that Jesus tells us to love one another as he loved us, what standards and guidelines for relationships does that bring to mind?
5. What typically keeps couples from practicing mutual submission in marriage, from always giving priority to the other person?
6. In Ephesians 5:21, we're told, "Submit to one another out of reverence for Christ." What do you think it means in a marriage to practice mutual submission out of reverence for Christ?
The Key Scripture in this session
"A new command I give you:
Love one another.
As I have loved you, so you must
love one another."
"In our relationship, YOU are the priority." These words may come fairly easy. What about the actions behind them?
In order to make Love a verb, what are two or three action steps you can take immediately to demonstrate your decision to give first priority to your spouse?
As your passage to focus on this week, read through Philippians 2:3-8, which gives relationship guidelines rooted in the life example of Jesus Christ. Notice especially v.3 What makes these instructions difficult for most of us to carry out?
Look closer at Philippians 2:4 Why do you think it's so important for married couples to make the effort to actively take notice of each other's personal interests - and even get involved in them?
In vv.5-7 of Philippians 2, we're pointed to the example of Christ as the right standard for our own relationships with each other. From what you see in these verses, how would you describe the relational standards that Jesus demonstrated for us?
Verse 8 in Philippians 2 tells us to what extent Jesus humbled himself for the sake of fulfilling God's plan for having a relationship with us. How far did Jesus take it? And in our relationships with each other, how far would we go in humbling ourselves for the sake of one another?
Read over again this week's passage, Philippians 2:3-8. How would you summarize the uniqueness and radical difference in the relational guidelines that are taught here, as compared to the relational guidelines we're more likely to learn from the culture around us?