Date: March 5, 2023
Session Title: Jesus Met My Greatest Need
The Point: Only Jesus can truly satisfy my thirst.
Get Into the Study
Use the following illustration as an alternate introduction to this session.
Ask: What do you think are the top 5-10 basic human needs? Allow a few minutes for students to discuss and say a few ideas aloud.
After some time of participants mentioning ideas, ask: How would you rank the needs of everyone in this room from most important to least important?
Explain that Psychologist Abraham Maslow made popular the idea that would ultimately become known in behavioral science as Maslow’s “Hierarchy of Needs” in 1943. The idea was that there are basic human needs that every human needs to move from surviving to thriving. [You may wish to review a site from a simple google search, for example: “Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs” to know a few things about Maslow’s Pyramid.]
Depending on how much time you have with your group, show an image from your google search findings of the five levels of needs in priority. Use something as follows:
- Physiological Needs: food, water, shelter, clothing, sleep
- Safety and Security: health, employment, property, family, social stability
- Love and Belonging: friendship, family, intimacy, sense of connection
- Self-Esteem: confidence, achievement, respect for others
- Self-Actualization: morality, creativity, acceptance, purpose, meaning
After a bit of explanation of the needs and the priority of those needs, ask the group: if you had to pick only one basic need first, what would it be? (Allow time for them to think about needing to breathe, needing food, clothes, and so on.)
A recent story online pointed out that the longest a person can go without sleep is 264 hours. Although one man claims to have not slept since 1962 https://www.iol.co.za/lifestyle/health/watch-the-longest-a-person-has-gone-without-sleep-is-264-hours-but-vietnamese-man-claims-he-hasnt-slept-since-1962
Say: A human can go a long time without food, shelter, clothing, and even sleep—but we cannot live a long time without clean water.
In this session, we’re going to learn how Jesus met our greatest need, and what it means to our lives that only Jesus can truly satisfy our thirst.
Get Into the Study [Option from Adult Leader Guide, p. 17]
At the beginning of this session, play a video showing someone who is really thirsty. Then ask Question #1.
Study the Bible
Use the following story and illustration for help in teaching the Scripture passage found in John 4:7-14 where Jesus revealed a greater thirst in us.
Say: Today, we understand that water is necessary for many reasons, from increasing our energy levels, helping us maintain a healthy weight, or (when not drinking water properly) becoming dehydrated. Many people walk around with water bottles all day—at work, school, and while traveling. Everyone seems to have knowledge of the necessity of water, whether we are drinking the proper amount per day or not.
According to this recent news article, this is the proper amount of water you should drink per day https://www.courier-journal.com/story/life/wellness/health/2023/01/12/dehydration-symptoms-how-much-water-you-should-drink-a-day/69780708007/.
Emphasize: As important as water is to the human body, we find in John 4:7-14 that there is something greater than thirst for water. We can drink 100 ounces of water per day, and yet the next day, we need to drink more water. Water is good, but we will become thirsty again soon.
EXTRA was written by Ryan Sanders. He holds the ThM and MDiv from The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary. Ryan serves as Lay Pastor at McLean Bible Church, is married with three children, and lives in Washington, DC. Find more about Ryan at RyanJSanders.com.
Live It Out [Option from Adult Leader Guide, p. 24]
Play the worship song “Psalm 63” and invite group members to read along and dwell upon the Scriptures as they listen to the song. Then close in prayer.
- What’s your favorite beverage when you’re really thirsty?
- When have you felt desperate for a drink of water?
- When has a decision been life altering and transformative?
- What is the thirstiest you’ve ever been?
- What are some unsatisfied needs that you’ve noticed in many people in our culture?
- How would you define “thirst” in this passage?
- What helped you recognize your need for Jesus?
- What cultural barriers might hinder someone from engaging in a conversation about Jesus today?
- Why is it difficult for us to acknowledge and confess our sins sometimes?
- What was effective about how Jesus engaged the woman on a life-impacting topic?
- What are some obstacles to acknowledging our sin?
- What are some ways Jesus reveals truths about Himself today?
- Why was this a significant moment in Jesus’ life? In Scripture?
- How do we know we can trust Jesus?
For Those in Your Group
Send the following link to your group members as either a teaser before the group meets or as a follow-up thought:
This article complements the study. Share this link with your group members.
- HomeLife – Abiding in Christ
Click here for a 20-minute podcast for both the group member and the leader.