I. The problem
II. The plan
III. The promise
IV. The proclamation
V. The product
1) How are messengers presenting a problem usually received? Why do we have the expression 'don't shoot the messenger'? What is our problem that Jesus came to solve? How is this message received today? How do you receive it?
2) How do you feel about planning? Do you lean toward making a plan, or winging it and being flexible? Does knowing that there was a plan give you comfort? Does making a plan for something you care about communicate love?
3) When you think of promises, what comes to mind? Should we avoid making promises? Is promising worth the risk of broken trust? What did God promise us about Christmas? When did God make promises about the coming of the Messiah? How are you at waiting on promises?
4) How do you like to communicate your plans and purposes? Do you like to undersell and overdeliver, or do you prefer to make a big splash? Which did God do in Christmas? Was Christmas more stealth or big splash, or a bit of both? If you were God for a day, how would you communicate your plans and promises? How would you know that free creatures would accept them? What keeps us from hearing God's proclamation?
5) What is the product of God's plan? How is peace in this sense different from how we normally think of peace? How do you know that you have peace with God? Have you experienced that? If so, what is that like for you? Is peace subjective or objective?