You know that Sunday feeling, right?

We leave church inspired and filled with Truth and encouragement on Sundays … and somewhere along the course of the week, pieces of the message tend to fade and we often lose that Sunday feeling.

The Monday After {the Sunday Sermon} carries the Sunday message into Monday mornings by sharing how what we’ve heard on Sunday morning is making a difference in our Mondays, our weeks, our lives. Because of your generosity to Accelerate, we are able to share these stories! Thank you!

The Monday After Sunday, October 14, 2013 : Fully Devoted, Knowing and Obeying Scripture, part one {click HERE to listen!}

By Sheryll Belonga

Think about the times you spent studying while you were in school.

Now I don’t mean the cram sessions; I am talking about the more intentional times when you disciplined yourself to study. You set aside the time and gathered the necessary tools and you began the process.  Eventually you retained enough information to get through your classes, and inevitably some of it became a part of you.

Now let’s talk about God’s Word. Studying God’s word is similar in that, it too, requires discipline, time and tools, and there is also a process — cram sessions with God’s Word just don’t cut it when we are trying to grow into spiritually mature disciples who know more than the text book answers.

Becoming spiritually mature is also a process and it requires spending time with God and in the word of God.  Many times Christians believe that simply reading the word is enough.  But it is through studying the word that we have greater retention and are able to stand when storms come, that we are able to navigate the testing times of life that hand us essay questions rather than multiple choice.

Pastor Joe blessed us by giving us what he called the “Devotional Method of Bible Study.” But before we can use this method we must first accept the Bible as authority in our life, and in order to accept the Bible as authority we must remove all other sources that claim authority such as the culture, tradition, human reasoning and our emotions.

I don’t know about you but for me emotions were and at times still are a big authority in my life. In the past my feelings would determine my actions more often than not. Because I realize this is a struggle for me I pray about it when it arises and give that authority to God.  It isn’t always easy because my flesh can be strong, but I know that when I submit I will have peace.

Once we submit to the right authority, we begin the process of learning to study the Bible through prayer and meditation.  As Pastor Joe put it, to meditate is not to empty the mind but rather to fill the mind with scripture.  He gave us four ways to meditate on scripture: picture it (imagine what you are reading in your mind), pronounce it (say it over and over each time emphasizing a different word), personalize it (make it your own) and lastly probe it (ask questions to dig deeper into the scripture helping you to apply it).

In the probing part of meditation, he gave five questions we could ask using the acronym SPACE:

S – sin (Is there any sin to confess?)

P – promise (Is there a promise to claim?)

A – attitude (Is there any attitude to change?)

C – command (Is there a command to obey?)

E – example (Is there an example to follow?)

These steps will enable us to grow closer not only in our knowledge of God but in our relationship with Him.  Pastor Joe closed his message by challenging us to set aside an hour each week to study the Bible.  Now I know that an hour may seem like a long time but think about it this way, have we got anything “better” to do.

If an hour in the Bible will interrupt our routines then maybe those routine needs changing.

Are you willing to take the challenge?  I know I am because this life isn’t a fill-in-the-blank test for which we can cram and pencil in the “book” answers. It’s a journey requiring true knowledge that can only be acquired through quality time in God’s word.

Sheryll Belonga is wife to Jurrell and homeschooling mom to their three great boys. Her hearts desire is to glorify God in all she says and does in spite of life’s daily happenings.

4 thoughts on “The Monday After: Fully Devoted: Knowing and Obeying Scripture, part one {Sheryll}

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