1. Preparing A Place

John 14:1-9

My friend in the hospital bed didn't have long to live. Her breathing came in ragged gasps. "I think I saw heaven last night," she whispered. "I saw the lights of the city—and it looked like home."

Home for a follower of Jesus Christ is a place we've never been. It's a place of beauty and rest and wholeness. It's the place where Jesus is.

Group Discussion. What is your favorite room in your home or your parent's home? What do you like about it?

Personal Reflection. In what specific place do you feel most secure? Where do you feel closest to God?

In the hours before his death Jesus tried to prepare his closest friends for the coming crisis. Two facts were clear: he would be leaving them and they couldn't come with him. But while they were separated, Jesus would be busy—busy preparing a place for their reunion. Read John 14:1-9.

  1. What tone of voice do you think Jesus used in verses 1-4?
    1. Did his tone change when he responded to the questions from Thomas (v. 5) and Philip (v. 8)? Explain your answer.
  2. What facts about heaven does Jesus relate to his disciples?
  3. Why would Jesus' absence produce troubled hearts in his disciples?
  4. What troubles your heart?
    1. Who or what do you turn to or rely on when you are upset?
  5. What does Jesus have to do to "prepare" the Father's house for us?
  6. In what ways is Jesus preparing you to go to the Father's house?
  7. What do you expect to see and do in the Father's house?
  8. In light of verse 6, how would you respond to a person who believes that any sincere religious belief leads to heaven?
  9. Philip thought that if he could just "see" God, all his questions and doubts would disappear. What was Jesus' response (v. 9)?
  10. Why did Jesus' promise to return and take the disciples to be with him bring comfort to them?
    1. How does it make you feel knowing that Jesus has promised to return?

Give your troubles to God and then wait for his comfort to calm your heart.

Now or Later

Think of someone who is going through a crisis or difficult time. How do Jesus' words in John 14 equip you to bring comfort or encouragement to that person? Write a letter or talk to the person about what you have learned from this passage. Commit yourself to pray for that person's need.