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Handle With Care

* Why do some packages have a lable, which says, "Handle with care"?
(Item is fragile ) It will get damaged if not handled properly.

* What are some things that put in boxes to protect sensitive items?
(Straw, paper, thermocol) These are usually put in strong boxes to absorb the shock and protect valuable items.

Today we'll be seeing scriptures that talk about our roll in working with the weak.

Romans 15:1
We who are strong ought to bear with the failings of the weak and not to please ourselves.

The Bible teaches us that we who are strong ought to bear with the weakness of the weak.

* What does it mean to 'bear with'? (To tolerate, to be patient, to persevere, to go against what we really feel like doing.

* Why it is difficult to 'bear with ' the weak? (It's more easier / natural to get frustrated, to loose patience and get angry.

There are two kinds of people who are weak
1. Weak willed people
2. People who have lots of hurt in their lives.

* What do weak willed people usually do?
They fall into the same sin like, smoking, drinking, being immoral etc., they know it's wrong, but they still compromise.

* How can we help this kind of weak willed person?
Bear with them and build conviction into their lives. Invest time in teaching the Bible patiently, praying with them, getting them tied in with others who had similar struggles but have changed and share about your personal struggles and how God has helped you change.

C: It is at this point we should bear with them even more. Ultimately if their heart is right, it will have an impact.

* How can hurt cause a person to become weak? (When the sin of others effects and damages them, intensely.)

C: It can be caused by,
1. Physical and sexual abuse,
2. Being focus into submission, and
3. Having to suffer in silence.

This kind of a weak person needs help in being open, overcoming bitterness and starting all over again.

Many of them are in a shell and look at themselves as victims.

Hebrews 5:12
In fact, though by this time you ought to be teachers, you need someone to teach you the elementary truths of God's word all over again. You need milk, not solid food!

* How should we deal with those who are weak, ignorant and going astray? (Gently)

* What does it mean to be gentle? (Kind, place ourselves in their shoes,understand, listen carefully, getting the full picture.)

Hebrews 12:13
"Make level paths for your feet," so that the lame may not be disabled, but rather healed.

* Who should be our role model? (Jesus)

C: Let's see how Jesus dealt with the problems of the weak.

John 11:35 Jesus was real, he was willing to cry.

* Why did he weep?

C: Openly and in front of others, he wore his heart on his sleeve, as he went to help Mary and Martha, he expressed his own concern and care, those who saw him weeping were convinced that Jesus loved Lazarus.

* What can we learn from this incident? (he was willing to show his feelings)

C: Tears did not make him less of a man. It just helped him to be real, sometimes we can help the weak by being real (but not sinful) with ourselves.

When we work with the weak, it's okay to express our concern, show tears, and remember they are hurting.

Matthew 12:9-13
9 Going on from that place, he went into their synagogue,
10 and a man with a shriveled hand was there. Looking for a reason to accuse Jesus, they asked him, "Is it lawful to heal on the Sabbath?"
11 He said to them, "If any of you has a sheep and it falls into a pit on the Sabbath, will you not take hold of it and lift it out?
12 How much more valuable is a man than a sheep! Therefore it is lawful to do good on the Sabbath."
13 Then he said to the man, "Stretch out your hand." So he stretched it out and it was completely restored, just as sound as the other.

* What did Jesus teach the Pharisees? (it's lawful to do good on the Sabbath)

C: Jesus was firm.

What can we learn from this? (Jesus was willing to challenge people; he did not layback but spoke the truth.

C: The weak need our love but we also need to be firm in the standard of the bible.

By striking the right balance between patience and speaking the truth in love wecan work more effectively with the weak.

Remember we might make mistakes along the way, but lets be humble and learn from them.

Jesus was willing to cry, but he was also firm when he needed to be firm.

By making a decision to imitate Jesus, we too can be effective in helping the weak to be like Jesus.