Resource for Today
Jani Ortlund: Hello, everyone. If you are listening and you are a leader, I want you to pause the podcast and go to our website to copy off enough copies for each of your members to have two copies of the worksheet entitled, “My Weekly Schedule.” You’ll find it on our website, under podcast number 146. Go do that right now.
Questions and Comments
Well, I just want to thank those of you who send in your questions and comments. We’ve received wonderful comments and a few questions as well. One of our listeners, in Kenya, asked how she could join up with an online discipleship group. She didn’t understand how to do that, and I had to email her back that we don’t have that capacity (though I wish we did!). So, I’m sorry! At the moment, we can only listen and try to figure it out.
For those of you listening, I just want to suggest again, that you gather a friend or two and listen together. You can discuss things and say your memory verses to each other, and pray for each other, and then next year, you can share what you’ve learned with others. So even if you don’t have a large group to do this with, gather another friend and try to get her to listen with you, and then you can work on it together.
Worship Through Song
For your worship time this week, I’d like to encourage you to think together about a song you can sing as a group. Perhaps there’s one you sing in your church, or maybe you can look one up online or in a hymn book. In my group, we sing a blessing over each other from Numbers 6:24-26. We sing it to a tune that I learned as a child, and it’s really easy for the rest of the members to learn. It’s a prayer we like to pray over each other; a prayer of blessing as we’re concentrating on priority two: our love for the Body of Christ. The idea is: find a song that you can all embrace and sing together. Colossians 3:16 says,
“Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God.”Colossians 3:16
Did you get that? Singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God. Don’t miss out on this musical dimension in your times together. If you are participating in this discipleship series alone, I suggest you find a Christian hymn or a praise chorus and listen to it yourself with thankfulness in your heart to God. Go ahead now and pause the podcast to take some time for this.
Now, we want to go right into accountability. Go over your assignment from last week.
Quiet Times and Meditation
Talk about your six quiet times and your verses of meditation. Why don’t you pause the podcast and do that right now? See how everyone’s doing with their quiet times. Are you reading through the Bible together? Are you staying on line with everybody else in the right passages? If not, how can we encourage each other? How can we help each other? And then share about your verses of meditation. Have they been particularly helpful to you this week? Go ahead and do that now.
Next, work on your memory work together. Your books of the Old Testament, say them together out loud. And then say Romans 12: 9-21 out loud together. See how you’re doing with that.
Finally, discuss the book assignment that you had. Make sure that everyone understood what pages you were to read. What did they get out of it? Did they find anything confusing? What was helpful to them?
Review your Short-term and Life-time Goals
Okay, now that was accountability. You caught up on some of your assignments. Now, I want everyone to take out your lifetime and short term goals, just get them out there in front of you. I want you to review them together and discuss how you have done with those you wanted to have finished by March 1. Go ahead, pause the podcast, and do that right now.
Next, I want you to take out a piece of paper and revise or write new short term goals that you’d like to have done now, by June 1. If you, or anyone in your group needs time to think this through, make this part of your assignment for next week. Allow as much time as needed to make this successful and not burdensome. Pause the podcast while you work on this.
Alright, were you able to write out a few more short term goals? Remember, you take those from your lifetime goals, from which you have written year long goals.
“My Weekly Schedule” – A New way to pray for Each Other
Now, I want you leaders to hand out the worksheet, “My Weekly Schedule,” that you copied off. Hopefully you copied off two for each person in your group. Now, this might be a little complicated, so I will try to explain this as carefully as I can. You might need to listen to it twice to make sure you understand.
Find the day of the week you are meeting on, on your weekly schedule, and move to the next day. Now, put the date of each day at the top of the paper, starting with tomorrow. For example, if I do this lesson with my group on Thursday, March 10 (which I think I probably will), we will take our weekly schedule worksheet and put March 11 on Friday, March 12 on Saturday, March 13 on Sunday, March 14 on Monday, and so on, until we come to our next time together on Thursday, March 17. Do you see how that works? Then have each person fill out her schedule for the coming week, at least as much as she can remember.
Then put the weekly schedules away while you share prayer requests. Go ahead, turn off the podcast, and share these requests, taking your time, as I’m not going to teach today. I want to give you plenty of time to share and pray together. Then before you dismiss your group, come back onto the podcast for your assignment.
I hope that was a good time of sharing. I hope you’re becoming more and more safe with each other and vulnerable. I pray that you’re learning how to honor one another and bear one another’s burdens.
Now here is your assignment for next week. Again, let’s have our six quiet times. We want that to become a life-long pattern. And let’s keep our meditation verse before us, whether it’s on our bathroom mirror where we put on our makeup, or in our kitchen where we do our cooking, or in our car where we do our driving. Keep your meditation verse in front of you. Review or perfect (keep working on if you need to) Romans 12:9-21. We want you to store that up way deep in your heart. And read the next portion of your book that your group is reading together. We’re reading Bonhoeffer, but I hesitate to tell you where to read, because I think each group is probably choosing its own section to read according to your needs.
And then finally, there are two more parts to this assignment. Take out those weekly scheduled papers that you worked on, and exchange with someone else in your group. That’s who you will pray for as she goes through her week. And then, that blank paper, that second weekly scheduled paper that you have, take it home, and bring it back for next week to share. You’re going to exchange it at next week’s meeting. But write out your schedule. You might want to write your three or four short term goals that you’re working on as well, on that calendar, so your prayer partner can pray for you.
So here’s your assignment:
- 6 quiet times,
- Meditation verse
- Romans 12:9- 21
- Read the next portion of your book that you’re reading together
- Exchange your “Weekly Schedule” papers for this coming week, and
- Prepare a weekly schedule for the following week to bring with you to meeting next week.
And may the Lord restore your souls as you enjoy communion with your heavenly Father, hiding his Word in your hearts, and praying for each other. God bless you.