40 Days of Discipline

40 Days of Discipline: Day 7 – Bible Study

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23 Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters, 24 since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving. (Colossians 3:23 – 24)

Theme:  If not You, then Who?

The survey results are in from our Bible study poll.  70% of our respondents consistently participate in Bible studies, 20% rarely participate and 10% occasionally participate.  Thanks for the honest feedback!  Let’s all prayerfully consider how we can learn from each other to improve – all for God’s glory.

As we conclude our consideration of the Discipline of Bible Study, let’s focus on an important but sometimes overlooked role that Bible study plays.  Most of us will have encountered individuals who are excellent at accomplishing tasks but the way they get things done leaves a lot to be desired.  Examples exist in our work environment, in public life and yes, even in the church.  We are likely guilty ourselves at times. 

God is not only concerned about what gets done but how things get done.  His standards for the way we must execute our tasks for Him are very high, and Bible study keeps us in tune with His standards.

Request

Can you share a circumstance where your awareness of God’s standards impacted your attitude in carrying out a challenging task? 

9 thoughts on “40 Days of Discipline: Day 7 – Bible Study

  1. As a teacher, lesson planning is a battle every week. Despite being in my fourth year of teaching, curating material for each student is never a breezy task. There are times when I’m so tired that I’m tempted to just throw a documentary on for a span of classes and call it a day. Technically, there is knowledge to be learned from educational videos (and they do have their place in the classroom), but it’s not the most effective tool to rely on for my students. If I gave in to this urge, I’d have a lot less work on my hands. However, I know that’s not the kind of attitude that God has called me to have in my position. My students deserve my best because I firmly believe that God has called me to be a guide in their lives. Cutting corners is not an option in my job because it would be to the detriment of my students.

  2. During the second and third year at bible school, I was asked to provide leadership for a Sunday afternoon Sunday School in the ministry environs of the local church. This was an exciting challenge to teach the word of God to children, work with the three other teachers and to provide me with practical ministry experience. However, there were times when I would have preferred to continue a Sunday afternoon sleep rather than wake up and get to the 4:00 p.m. responsibility. However, the sense that this was the work of God, the joy of ministry with the other teachers and the response of the children brought a sense of fulfilment.
    Interestingly, after Sunday School there was an evening church service that was celebrative or a street gospel meeting where we may see persons repent and come to faith in Jesus. There seemed to have been a renewal of energy as the day unfolded in community as we did the work of the Lord.

  3. As a wife of Japanese diplomat I always believe that my role is not only to represent Japan and serve its people , but also to be an ambassador of Jesus in every country my husband get posted. Of course I have certain duties to perform as a diplomat’s wife , and as always with God’s grace, I try my best to perform my role to the best I can. One of those duties, I attend many diplomatic , international and local events In the year 2000-2003,we were posted in Islamabad, Pakistan and there was this event I attended which was exclusively for the spouses of embassy and UN officials from the diplomatic corps of Islamabad, Pakistan. The host of the event was the wife of the head of UN from
    one African country. While all the wives from different counties were having lunch and chatting, this one wife proudly mentioned that her god is her husband. Most of the wives seemed to be enjoying the topic. But when I made a comment saying, “No way, I could say or worship my husband as my God because Jesus is the Lord of my life.” Suddenly, I find myself being stared at by everyone, and it became very quiet in the room. Soon enough after that event, this wife who was claiming that her husband is her God, together with other wives close to her started excluding me or not inviting me in the many events ( some personal, some official) in the community. I think they didn’t like the boldness they see in me as a Christian. I never regret my response in that party about my God. I also didn’t care if they stop inviting me to their gatherings/ activities and other social events. I know some of the wives mocked me or find me strange when I started talking about Jesus in that luncheon. But I went home happy and not feeling embarrassed. I guess I would be sad or regretful if I remained quiet, and didn’t share to them about my Lord and God, Jesus Christ. I firmly believe that God placed me where I am
    now, because I have a mission to share the gospel. I should be aware that every chance I’ve got to talk about Jesus and His word, should be dealt with urgency and no procrastination. I guess that’s the standard I put on myself as a believer. Often times, the Holy Spirit helps me or put the words in my mouth as what had happened in that diplomatic luncheon in Islamabad. If I remained quiet and didn’t talk about my faith and my God at that very moment, I’m sure I will feel bad when I get home and replay in my mind what has been discussed in that gathering. I will never forget this experience, and so far my husband and I have lived in 11 countries, and I must say, that I’m
    quite comfortable talking about my savior Jesus Christ to whoever I encounter while doing my role as a Japanese diplomat’s wife.

    • ‘A circumstance’ here encapsulates my usual modus operandi or mode of operation as a teacher so my response does not pinpoint an incident, per se, however, I have very high standards for myself and my students as my God who is a God of excellence in all its forms influences my profession/my life. Whether it’s academic work, including pristine presentation, (I NEVER accepted sloppy work!) or attiring themselves appropriately and neatly, or keeping the classrooms and other environment immaculate, or having good interpersonal relationship, or caring for others, amidst many other things, God directs how I teach and conduct myself as a professional.

      Interestingly, at one of the institutions I taught at, teachers were not allowed to share their faith. We were told this at the very first staff meeting. As time progressed and I was teaching a class one day, “out of the blue” a student simply said aloud, after apologizing for disturbing the class, “Miss, you know you touch us deeply?” I responded, “Excuse me? What did you say?” She said, “Miss, you touch us deeply spiritually . . . !” The class unanimously assented. Then she continued, “What religion are you, Miss?” I answered, “Well, it’s not so much my religion but it’s my relationship with Christ. I am a Christian, anyway, let’s get on with the class, as you know the rules and we are not allowed to discuss religion in class.” She said, “I know, Miss and I am sorry but I want to touch Jesus! I wish I could touch Jesus!” Trying to hold back my tears, I told her she could touch Jesus and I could let her know how but since she knew the school does not allow witnessing to students on campus , I could talk with her after school, off campus!” She was excited about meeting Jesus! I pointed out that the school does not allow ” the evangelization of students or witnessing to students on campus” and she tearfully beamed, “Miss, that’s a STUPID rule! Look where we are, just outside the gate! And see, we are not breaking the rule. We are SMART! I love Jesus and I want Jesus! And I love you too, Miss. Thank you. You are an awesome teacher!” I humbly accepted her compliment but told her only God is truly awesome . The fifth form student was crying as she touched Jesus and Jesus touched her heart!

  4. Not really a response to the question but as an extension thereof…
    “God is not only concerned about what…, but how, …and also why.”

    As a classic overachiever, I know what it is like to want to do things well but really for my own self-validation as opposed to as a response to God. We do well to consider why also…

    • Lester I totally understand what you’re saying.. Does one ever say or even have in the forefront of their thoughts I’m doing this for the Lord especially when it’s secular things? How do you develop that mindset to think that for all situations.

      • We know that “without faith it is impossible to please God (Heb.11:6),” but that does not mean that with faith we automatically please God. The righteous will live by faith but we may indeed shrink back and displease our Heavenly Father (Heb. 10:38). We must walk in our faith, a living faith, doing good, faith without works being dead (Jam. 2). But equally, works without faith is displeasing to God, an abomination even. “Oh, that one of you would shut the temple doors, so that you would not light useless fires on my altar! I am not pleased with you,” says the Lord Almighty, “and I will accept no offering from your hands (Mal.1:10).” Yet, we are told “do not forget to do good and to share with others, for with such sacrifices God is pleased (Heb.13:16).”

        All this to say Karen, that to me, the answer to your question—which I will forever be striving for on this side of heaven—is to remember always my Heavenly Father’s perfect, unconditional, love for me, and then, out of that place, offer Him my heart and humble service, not earning anything (His love, approval, acceptance, all already secured), but that I, as His little child, may please Him, greatly even ♥️

        1 Kings 3:10 NIV
        [10] The Lord was pleased that Solomon had asked for this.

        Exodus 33:17 NIV
        [17] And the Lord said to Moses, “I will do the very thing you have asked, because I am pleased with you and I know you by name.”

  5. Each and almost all the jobs I have held.
    I would tell the new employees I hired that they are working for God not the boss.
    I substitute teach now and this week I had to make the class exciting as the video was boring etc as the music teachers dad died so he left the same video on Duke Ellington for Kindergarteers to fifth graders.
    I could have just put video on but as usual I knew this could be better so I did much more.
    Never thought that God is watching me but when you do your best for the people’s best then you do it for Him.

  6. Thank you all so much for sharing. I was blessed by every single commentary. The testimonies are inspiring and to Lester and Karen I agree that the “why?” question is key.

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