Tag Archives: Bible Study

Building with Gold and Silver

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The apostle Paul warns the church in Corinth and God’s Word speaks to us: 

1 Corinthians 3:10-17 NLT 

Because of God’s grace to me, I have laid the foundation like an expert builder. Now others are building on it. But whoever is building on this foundation must be very careful. For no one can lay any foundation other than the one we already have—Jesus Christ.

Anyone who builds on that foundation may use a variety of materials—gold, silver, jewels, wood, hay, or straw. But on the judgment day, fire will reveal what kind of work each builder has done. The fire will show if a person’s work has any value. If the work survives, that builder will receive a reward. But if the work is burned up, the builder will suffer great loss. The builder will be saved, but like someone barely escaping through a wall of flames. Don’t you realize that all of you together are the temple of God and that the Spirit of God lives in you?  God will destroy anyone who destroys this temple. For God’s temple is holy, and you are that temple.

Jesus is the foundation of the church.  Never forget it- everything we do is built upon Christ. If we begin to build upon anything else but Christ, our work shall surely crumble.

Is your personal ministry based on Christ?  Does it speak of Christ?  In my small group, do we focus on our Savior? In my life, do I speak of Christ to my neighbors? Am I bold? Is my love of Christ greater than my love of comfort or love of self?  Am I jealous for holiness?  Are my attitudes and actions helpful to the church or harmful?

Am I building with gold and silver or am I building with sticks and hay?  Do I even know that I am building? On judgement day my work will be tested with fire. All will be revealed.

God says that I am his temple and he dwells in me.  I am holy.  Do I act and speak as if I am holy?

Oh Lord, have mercy on me for I often forget that you are with me always and that you consider me holy. Forgive me for the unholy things I have done with your temple and forgive me for not doing what I should have done.

 Oh Jesus, help me to stay focused on you.  Help me to build with gold and silver and help me to never forget that you are the foundation.  Help me to remember that it is not what I have done, but it is what you have done that matters.  You have given your life for me. Help me to always live for you and to share you with the people who I come in contact with.  Help me to live a life pointing to you.   Amen.

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Community in Bible Study

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Community:

A place where people come together for a common goal.

A place where there is safety.

A place that provides nourishment, strength, and accountability.

We find community in many places-  in our locales, in our social gatherings, in our organizations.   We come together sharing like interests and goals.  We protect one another from enemies of the community. We grow and help others to grow in our communities.

Do you have community in your Bible Study?   Is it a place that your goal is to come closer to God, to know Him, to find direction and his will for life?  Are you allowed to be vulnerable in your study?  To share your feelings and thoughts without fear.   Are there others in your study that love and honor you, that correct you when you need it, that encourage you?

A Bible Study community is a place where you fall in love — with Jesus and with people.  Jesus awaits.  He wants to work with you and through you.  Members of the community should be loving, kind, gentle, patient, good, joyful, peaceful, faithful, and self-controlled with their ways and thoughts.  Members of the community should be willing to be open enough to trust that God has placed you in this specific community.

A Bible Study community is a treasure.  One that should be sought after and cherished.

Be devoted to one another in love.   Honor one another above yourselves.           (Romans 12:10)

Living So That …

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I started a new Bible Study this week.  I am reading Living so That: Making Faith-filled Choices in the Midst of a Messy Life written by Wendy Blight.

It is a study of  “so that” verses.   The chapters are

  1. Jesus came so that…..
  2. God spoke so that…
  3. Pray so that…
  4. Trials come so that…
  5. Let your light shine so that…

Wendy is a thoughtful and deep researcher.  She has a way of writing to make you feel as though she is speaking to you from across the table.  The study is good for people newer to Bible Study and has a going deeper section for those who want to dig in a bit more.

Proverbs 31 Ministries is leading an online Bible Study with this book for the next few weeks.  Join in if you want!

Made to Crave Bible Study

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 I’m signed up and ready for Proverbs 31 Ministries online Bible Study Made to Crave. The study begins January 19 and goes through March 1, 2014

All you need is the book Made to Crave by Lysa Terkeurst, a Bible, and a willing spirit.  It helps to have a notebook or journal of some kind.  I also have Made to Crave Devotional also by Lysa Terkeurst, but that is totally optional.

Won’t you join me?  You can sign up by clicking  here.

Saying Yes To God

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My cousin and I have always been close. There have been times in our lives when we have talked daily and seen each other often during the week to encourage each other and share with one another. Other times we both stay busy with family, jobs, and everyday life so that we keep in touch just by phone and the occasional get together.

Then one day I felt the nudge. From God. Ask your cousin to join you at Bible Study.
“But Lord, I’m not even sure I have the time to commit to my church’s Bible Study…. Besides, she won’t want to come – she likes to keep her evenings at home and I can’t do mornings…. And she may already be involved in a study at her own church….”

Again, the nudge. Ask your cousin to join you at Bible Study.

It was early January and besides Christmas greetings and holiday talk; we hadn’t had any lengthy conversations in a long time. It was going to feel weird and awkward to ask her to join me in a Bible Study that would start in a few weeks. I needed time to rekindle our relationship to a deep level before I approach the Bible Study level!

I really didn’t think my cousin would entertain the thought. Her children were all older and had lives that she was involved in and she guarded the time she had in the evenings with her husband. Her mother was at the end stages of Alzheimer’s disease and her extended family had made a tough decision recently to put my aunt in a nursing home. My cousin made one, sometimes two, visits daily to take care of her mother. She also was involved in church. She was much too busy to think about coming to my church for a Bible Study.

But God wanted me to ask. What would I do? I said Yes To God. I was only responsible for asking, not for her answer. So I invited my cousin to a Bible Study — and to my surprise she said yes.

Why was I surprised? Was this not God’s plan? However, I didn’t see the full impact until later.

During the next few months :
• We completed two great Bible Studies
• We met an awesome older lady in our Bible Study who we would pray with
• We became very close during this time- sharing daily and having many deep conversations
• I visited her mom (my aunt) at the nursing home at least weekly

Then one spring afternoon at her kitchen table, my cousin grabbed my hand and with tears in her eyes she told me what I already felt within.
“You know why God has brought us close together again—I need you to hold my hand when my mom goes. You have walked that path before me and I am going to need you.”
And she was right. God was preparing her and preparing me for her mother’s passing.

Less than seven months from the time I felt the first nudge from God and said Yes to Him, my aunt passed from this life to everlasting life. I was there to hold my cousin’s hand and comfort her with the comfort of God.

2 Corinthians 1:3-4
All praise to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. God is our merciful Father and the source of all comfort. He comforts us in all our troubles so that we can comfort others. When they are troubled, we will be able to give them the same comfort God has given us.

More of God’s comfort came a week later when both my cousin and I received cards from our older Bible Study friend. The cards were handwritten notes of encouragement.

A few months later I saw her and thanked her for the thoughtful cards that had come during our time of grief. She was unaware of my aunt’s passing! God had laid us on her heart and so she sent us the cards. She had listened to the nudges of God and obeyed.

…God is our merciful Father and the source of all comfort…

Why should I be surprised?