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Key Thought:

My expectations often determine what I receive in life.

Key Quote

A faith that cannot be tested cannot be trusted!” – Pastor Scott Jones

“God tests you to promote you; Satan tempts you to fail you.” – Pastor Scott Jones

Start talking. Find a conversation starter for your group.
  • Do you prefer warm weather or cold weather?
  • What’s your favorite gift you’ve ever received?
  • What do you feel like you’re naturally good at?
  • What does your name mean? If you don’t know, look it up!

Start thinking. Ask a thoughtful question.
  • How does your character impact the results of your giftings?
  • Why is it important to go “all in” with God during a trial instead of waiting until after the trial? 
  • How can you use your gifts to be fruitful?
  • What is the difference between the Manasseh expectation and the Ephraim expectation?

Start sharing. Choose questions that create openness.
  • Do you find yourself following the Manasseh or Ephraim expectation? Why?
  • What helps keep you focused on God when you’re going through a trial?
  • Do you find your faith being tested often?
  • Tell the group about a trial you have experienced and how you overcame it.

Start praying. Be bold, and pray with power.

Dear Jesus, thank you for using the trials in my life to strengthen me rather than defeat me. I ask you for your strength and wisdom to keep fighting through my circumstances right now and those still to come. Amen 

Start doing. Commit to a step and live it out this week.
  • Identify what gifts God has given you and find a way to use them for the Kingdom.
  • Encourage three people this week.
  • If you’re going through a trial, find a new way to go “all in” by seeking God to help you overcome it. 


“And to Joseph were born two sons before the years of famine came, whom Asenath, the daughter of Poti-Pherah priest of On, bore to him. Joseph called the name of the firstborn Manasseh: ‘For God has made me forget all my toil and all my father’s house.’ And the name of the second he called Ephraim: ‘For God has caused me to be fruitful in the land of my affliction.’” Genesis 41:50 - 52 NKJV

“And so it was, as her soul was departing (for she died), that she called his name Ben-Oni; but his father called him Benjamin.” Genesis 35:18

“And Israel said to Joseph, ‘I had not thought to see your face; but in fact, God has also shown me your offspring!’ So, Joseph brought them from beside his knees, and he bowed down with his face to the earth. And Joseph took them both, Ephraim with his right hand toward Israel’s left hand, and Manasseh with his left hand toward Israel’s right hand and brought them near him. Then Israel stretched out his right hand and laid it on Ephraim’s head, who was the younger, and his left hand on Manasseh’s head, guiding his hands knowingly, for Manasseh was the firstborn. Now when Joseph saw that his father laid his right hand on the head of Ephraim, it displeased him; so, he took hold of his father’s hand to remove it from Ephraim’s head to Manasseh’s head. And Joseph said to his father, ‘Not so, my father, for this one is the firstborn; put your right hand on his head.’ But his father refused and said, ‘I know, my son, I know. He also shall become a people, and he also shall be great; but truly his younger brother shall be greater than he, and his descendants shall become a multitude of nations.’ So, he blessed them that day, saying, ‘By you Israel will bless, saying, ‘May God make you as Ephraim and as Manasseh!’  And thus, he set Ephraim before Manasseh.” Genesis 48:11-20

“And his master saw that the Lord was with him and that the Lord made all he did to prosper in his hand.” Genesis 39:3

“But the Lord was with Joseph and showed him mercy, and He gave him favor in the sight of the keeper of the prison.” Genesis 39:21

“But remember me when it is well with you, and please show kindness to me; make mention of me to Pharaoh and get me out ­­­of this house. For indeed I was stolen away…” Genesis 40:14-15

“And Joseph said to his brothers, ‘Please come near to me.’ So, they came near. Then he said: ‘I am Joseph your brother, whom you sold into Egypt. But now, do not therefore be grieved or angry with yourselves because you sold me here; for God sent me before you to preserve life.’’ Genesis 45:4-5

“The earth was without form, and void; and darkness was on the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God was hovering over the face of the waters. Then God said, ‘Let there be light’; and there was light. And God saw the light, that it was good…” Genesis 1:2-4

“Then God saw everything that He had made, and indeed it was very good. So, the evening and the morning were the sixth day.” Genesis 1:31

“And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose.” Romans 8:28

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