“Jesus answered and said unto him, If a man loves me, he will keep my words: and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him.”        – John 14:23

“Every word of God is pure…”     – Proverbs 30:5

As Spring comes to an end and summer approaches, we’re often faced with choices about the commitments we want to make for coming year/fall when activities resume again after summer break.  I encourage you to make bible study one of your commitments.  There are many bible studies available through churches, YMCA’s, and even neighborhood groups. 

I’ve been involved with Disciple bible study for five years and am already excited about starting a new year of Disciple next fall, which will be my fourth year as a leader of the study.  The Disciple program offers a series of studies that start in the Fall and end in the Spring.  The first study (Disciple I) covers over 80% of the bible, beginning with Genesis and ending with Revelation, in just 34 weeks!  The follow-up studies spend 16 weeks each in Old and New Testaments, covering much less material so that the study can go slower and deeper.  The Disciple studies are for everyone.  They’re wonderful for those who have never done bible study and for those who are veterans of studying the Word.  Everyone grows in their biblical knowledge and in their relationships with the Lord. 

Also popular are the short term Beth Moore studies that last about 10-12 weeks.  Our church also started Life Groups where small groups of people come together to do various bible studies or meet like a book club selecting Christian books for their discussions.   Communities also offer CBS (Community Bible Study) and other similar programs.

These are just a few suggestions of studies or groups that might interest you.  Maybe you’d like to form your own group.  This can be done in your neighborhood, with a group of friends, or whoever you want to include. 

My first bible study experience was with a group of moms who became friends at their church.  They decided to get together as a play group over the summer.  While the children played they met to share lessons from the bible that they took turns preparing.  They invited me to join them and started me on my spiritual journey. 

We later moved away and I eventually got involved with Disciple.  It led me to new friends who have become like sisters (and now a ‘brother’, too), and grew my heart for the Lord in ways I never dreamed possible. 

My biggest reason for getting involved in a bible study was because I knew that one day I’d go before the Lord and I wanted to be prepared.  I didn’t want to have to say, ‘I didn’t know better’.  Somehow I don’t think God will accept that as an answer – especially when His instruction manual is right here for me to read.  I also wanted to do my best as a parent and wanted to be sure that I was parenting in a godly way. 

People come to bible study for many reasons.  The most important thing is that they come!  Be a joiner.  Get involved with a bible study group or start one of your own.  You can find out more by contacting local churches, talking to friends, visit your local Christian store, or get info online.  For more info about Disciple studies, go to www.Cokesbury.com

Bible study turned my life around at a time when it certainly needed to move in a new direction.  I’ve learned a lot and still have so much more to learn!  I hope you’ll choose to be a student of the Word, too. 

Dear Lord, the Bible is Your gift to me; let me use it.  When I stray from Your Holy Word, Lord, I suffer.  But, when I place Your Word at the very center of my life, I am blessed.  Make me a faithful student of Your Word so that I might be a faithful teacher in Your world, this day and every day.  Amen.      – Author unknown

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