Hi friends! Sickness has hit the Bennett house hard, so in lieu of our Periscope session today, I'd love if you could share your questions and comments right here on the blog!
On Day 3 of the 5-Day Joy Challenge Bible Study, we're talking about abiding in Christ. Jesus tells us in John 15:9-11 that the keys to true joy are obeying Him and abiding in His love. But what does that look like? What does it mean to abide?
In the workbook for the Bible Study, we look into the original Greek definition of the word used for "abide," to help us shape our understanding.
To abide is to stay, to remain, to continue.
Everyone's life is different, and everyone's gifts and abilities are different. So, there's not an exact science for how this will look from one person to another. God is big enough to speak to hearts in lots of different ways.
My friend, Heidi Bixby, was our guest on the podcast for the Bible Study today. It was amazing to hear her story of what she has learned over the years about abiding in Christ and about obedience.
Here are a few practical tools for staying, remaining, and continuing with Jesus, based on what Heidi shared with us today:
1. Consistent Bible-reading
- Heidi talked about the self-discipline of getting God's Word into your day consistently.
- Life Church's Bible App has several themed-devotional plans you can get right on your phone.
- I also LOVE the First5.org app--it wakes me up every morning with beautiful truth from God's word and encouraging images.
- I like to choose a theme to dig deeper in God's Word and exhaust it over several weeks or months. Sometimes I'll choose a person from the Bible, like Moses or David or Paul, and study everything I can about their life and walk with God. Sometimes I'll choose a book of the Bible.
- What works for you? Is there a time of day? A method for studying? A book or books you like to use?
- Communicating with God--talking with Him and listening to Him. I'd love for you to share what you do to remind yourself to stay in communication with God during the day.
3. Practicing Listening & Obedience to God
- Heidi talked listening for God's voice in her heart and being obedient to Him in the small things, because that's often more challenging than following Him in big things).
- How do you stay in-tune with God?
4. Podcasts & Books
- Heidi recommended a few of these on the Podcast--but I know that many of you are avid podcast-listeners as well as readers, so I'd love for you to share the podcasts and books or authors that you love in the comments!
5. Music (Heidi shared that listening to Christian music helps to keep her focused on Jesus throughout the day).
- What are some songs or artists you love?
- Do you have an app or station you gravitate towards?
6. Scripture Memory
- Memorizing God's Word so that it's available to you any time, any place.
- I've got an e-book on Scripture Memory coming out in January for you!
- I'd love to hear any tips you guys have on how you do this, as well.
There are SO many ways that we can focus on Christ and put abiding in Him into practice. The above is by no means an exhaustive list! I'd love to know what you think about any of the above tools, or others that you've got up your sleeve!
You can also share any questions or comments you've got based on Day 3 of the Bible Study, and we can go through them together!
Make sure you don't miss the punch line...
If there's nothing else you to take away from today's study, please remember what we said about James 1:22-25. None of the above disciplines will mean anything if we're not actually living the truth that we're taking in. One of the most important pieces of abiding in Christ is the way that we apply God's Word. The way we live it.
We have to let God's Word doesn't change us. We're lost if we don't.
More on that tomorrow...
Looking forward to hearing from you!