Spiritual Disciplines: Fasting {Week 4}

This week we’ll talk about fasting, probably the discipline we understand and practice the least.  After you’ve complete pages 37-43 in the study guide, watch the video below.  Share any new insight you had in regards to fasting!

2015 02 24 – Women’s Bible Study Week 5 from The Well Community Church on Vimeo.

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Spiritual Disciplines: Prayer {Week 2}

In this week’s panel, we’ll discuss prayer. Make sure you’ve completed p.20-26 in the study prior to the video.

Which type of prayer from our study was new to you? Have you tried praying differently this week? Comment below!

<p><a href=”https://vimeo.com/119399613″>2015 02 10 – Women's Bible Study Week 3</a> from <a href=”https://vimeo.com/twcc”>The Well Community Church</a> on <a href=”https://vimeo.com”>Vimeo</a&gt;.</p>

Spiritual Disciplines: Bible Study {Week 1}

This week on the panel, we’ll hear from a variety of women, in different seasons of life share how they study the Bible. Prior to watching the video, complete Week 1 in the study (p.7-18). This will be the longest week of homework we have since bible study is the foundation for most of the other disciplines!

After you’ve watched the video, leave a comment below with one new insight you had from this week’s homework or the panel.

<p><a href=”https://vimeo.com/118777229″>2015 02 03 – Women’s Bible Study Week 2</a> from <a href=”https://vimeo.com/twcc”>The Well Community Church</a> on <a href=”https://vimeo.com”>Vimeo</a&gt;.</p>

Spiritual Disciplines: Intro

I’m so glad you’ll be joining us these next 7 weeks to learn how to cultivate your love for God through different spiritual disciplines.

In this intro video, Katie and I share how this study came about as well as our greatest hope for this study-that we would love God more and understand the gospel in a deeper way, not just become more religious. Prior to watching this video, make sure you’ve done the homework for the intro week (p.4-5).

After you’ve watched the video, leave a comment below with thoughts or how you’re hoping to grow over these next few weeks!

<p><a href=”https://vimeo.com/118768022″>2015 01 27 – Women’s Bible Study Week 1</a> from <a href=”https://vimeo.com/twcc”>The Well Community Church</a> on <a href=”https://vimeo.com”>Vimeo</a&gt;.</p>

Spiritual Disciplines Study

  Do you want more from your relationship with God? Is reading your bible difficult? Is your quiet time a struggle, few and far between? Do you feel guilty about the lack of time you spend in prayer? Do you think of the word “Sabbath” and laugh at the thought of a weekly day of rest?

If so, then you’re in good company. Most of us want to live in deeper relationship with God, with greater trust and intimacy, and yet we get stuck on how to make that happen. We want our relationship with God to flourish, and yet for most of us, if we’re honest, it’s dry, lonely, and last on our list of things we need to “get done”.

So how does this change? How can we grow our love for the LORD without trying harder, doing more, and feeling guilt and shame when we fall short or don’t meet expectations?

The Gospel.

God’s love for us is the motivator in cultivating our love for Him.

Through Jesus; His life, death, and resurrection, we are promised right relationship with our Heavenly Father. In resting in His finished work on the cross, the privilege of discipleship is no longer duty, but delight.

Over these next 8 weeks, we’ll journey together through different spiritual disciplines and hear from a panel of women in different seasons of life share how they practice bible study, prayer, worship, serving, rest, etc.

My hope in this study is that we find freedom and creativity for how we practice spiritual disciplines. Spiritual disciplines are ways we as Christians can connect to God and help nourish our relationship with Him. Spiritual disciplines such as bible study, prayer, worship, fasting, serving, and Sabbath are ways we grow closer to the LORD. For years, many have taken spiritual disciplines and turned them into a legalistic means of earning God’s approval or favor. Our practice of spiritual disciplines does not atone, save, redeem, or earn God’s love for us. The Gospel tells us we cannot be loved any more or any less in Christ. Spiritual disciplines don’t earn us more of God’s favor or approval, again we are made right through Jesus. Spiritual disciplines are simply a means for deepening our relationship with God, an expression of love and relationship between Father and daughter.

My prayer for this study is that we practice all of these spiritual disciplines out of an overflow of the Gospel, that we would understand God’s great love for us and His redeeming grace and let all that we do be in response to that.

Each week, we will look at scripture to learn why and how we can practice each discipline, and then we will apply it. We will hear from a panel of women, who are in different seasons of life, share how they practice the disciplines. My hope is that after these 8 weeks, we will all be equipped with new ways to connect to God and delight in Him.

Where to begin?
If you haven’t already, sign up here to receive the 8 week study via email. *If you’ve already signed up to receive emails from my blog, no need to sign up again. The study will be delivered to your inbox on Thursday 4/23.

How will this work?
After you’ve received the study, follow this timeline. The study is designed for you to first go through the homework on your own, then watch the panel. Videos will be posted on Mondays, all you have to do is make sure you complete that week’s homework prior to watching the video!

4/25: Intro
5/4: Bible Study
5/11: Prayer
5/18: Worship
5/25: Fasting
6/1: Thanksgiving
6/8: Serving/Giving
6/15: Sabbath/Rest

It’s pretty simple: sign up, do the week of homework, then watch the video. You can do this on your own, or invite some friends to journey along. Check your inboxes later this week for the study, looking forward to doing this with you!

Spiritual Discipline #1: Bible Study

Last Tuesday we launched our 8 week study on spiritual disciplines.  Week 1 is the topic of bible study.   Donald Whitney says of bible study “No other Spiritual Discipline rivals the importance of the intake of God’s Word. No other Spiritual Discipline can compensate for the lack of it. Without feasting on the food of Scripture, no one will enjoy a growing, healthy Christlike life.”

In her book Women of the Word, author Jen Wilkin says “the heart cannot love what the mind does not know”.  How can we love God without knowing Him through His word?  Jen Wilkin goes on to show us some of the counterproductive ways we approach bible study.  For most of us, we know we’re “supposed to” enjoy bible study, find it meaningful, and applicational.  Yet, many of us view it as one more thing to do in our day and often times it’s very dry and confusing.  Have you found this to be true of your time in God’s word?  Is it difficult to find the desire to read?  Are you struggling to connect?  Perhaps some of these approaches are causing the difficulty.

Info Graphic Bible Study MethodsGod’s word was never meant to be read a verse here and verse there, ripped out of context to make us feel better in the moment.  In fact it’s that kind of bible reading that has made us feel empty.  We know the verse is supposed to bring comfort but a few minutes later, and we’re anxious and overwhelmed again.

To make sense of life, we must know God.  To better understand God, we must read His word.  To find greater delight in reading, we must take the posture of learning about Him rather than trying to fix us.  I know it’s tempting to click that article that says “12 Verses to Help in Suffering” but for the most part, the way we endure suffering is by anchoring deeply into the character of God, not grabbing the devotional for a quick fix.  Understanding how to read the bible helps us understand God in a deeper way.

So what do you do to get the most out of your bible reading?

Here are some tips to help:  How to Read Your Bible

Also, jump in the women’s mid-size group that meets on Tuesdays and learn in a community of how to deepen your relationship with God.  Click here to sign up.

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How have you approached bible study?

What have been some of your experiences with the approaches above?

What are some things you’ve found to be helpful in regards to bible study?