Your Personal Grow-Pray-Study (GPS) Guide

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December 2021

January 2022

Five Foundational Practices

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Day 1: Romans 12:1-2. When you come to faith in Jesus, that is the first step, then what’s the next step? Paul gives clear direction in Romans 12:1-2. Being transformed is an ongoing process, a daily step to put one of the practices to work – time in prayer or God’s Word or working to share God’s love with others. To begin where you are and head in the right direction, answer this question: “What do I need to put off so that I can replace it with a God relationship-building practice?”

Day 2: Romans 12:4-5. We all begin in the same place in life, sinners in need of God’s grace. Only by what Jesus has done on the cross are we welcomed into God’s family in the waters of baptism. You become God’s child, unique in who you are, and yet all of us are called to be like Jesus. What do you have that is the same as other Christians? How has God made you unique in who you are, how you rest, how you learn, how you grow in faith, how you serve others?

Day 3: John 13:15, 17. In cultivating faith, being led leads to doing. Identity leads to intention. You show love to others because you are God’s child and God has first shown His love to you, then calls you to share that love with others. When do you find it easy to share God’s love? Why? When is it challenging? Where is God calling you to take the next step in showing His love to someone else in your life?

Day 4: Romans 12:6. Paul uses a whole bunch of gift examples: teaching, giving, serving, encouraging, and leading. He doesn’t say you get them all. That’s greedy. He does say God will work through the one He gives you. That’s grace. And when you put that gift, He gives to work. That’s growth. As you look at Paul’s list (others are listed in 1 Corinthians 12; Ephesians 4:11; 1 Peter 4:11), what “spiritual gifts” has God given you? When have you seen them at work in your life? What is your next step in developing those gifts to build up others and to grow yourself?

Day 5: John 13:12. Showing love to others is not something we pile on top of everything else in life. Love is how you approach everything else in life. Reflect on your life the past 24 hours, how have you shown love to God? To others? To yourself? How might God be leading you to show love in the day ahead?

Day 6: Philippians 3:13. Press on! That’s a marathon phrase. Where are you tempted to give up in your spiritual growth? Where is God calling you to press on? Spend time today (and every day) praying for the Holy Spirit to give you spiritual strength as you press on in your spiritual practices!

Cultivating-faith-gps-graphicRecent additional GO DEEPER reading opportunities:

  • "Cultivating Faith: A Christ-like Servant Leader Journey" by Sue von Fange & Jason Christ [for adult individual use] {Amazon Kindle #ad} and "Kindling the Heart: Nurturing Young Christ-like Servant Leaders" by Sue Steege [for family devotions] {Amazon Kindle #ad}
  • "Dream Big, Think Small: Living an Extraordinary Life One Day at a Time" by Jeff Mannion {Amazon Kindle #ad}
  • Experiencing God: Knowing and Doing the Will of God” by Henry Blackaby, Richard Blackaby, and Claude V. King {Amazon Kindle #ad}

You can also watch this week's sermon or read the full message & GPS here.


The Place Where Our Journey Begins

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Day 1: Isaiah 43:1. The world speaks of life as an accident, God speaks of life with purpose and intention. You are His child. One that Jesus came to save. One that Jesus loves dearly. How does the world define who you are? How does God define who you are? Which image of your life are you following the world’s or God’s? Why?

Day 2: 1 John 3:1. As a child of God, God has given you life and God has given you a purpose to be a Christlike servant leader. You might be thinking, me, a leader? Yes, you are a Christlike servant leader! First, you lead yourself. Then He invites and empowers you to lead others. Where is God calling you to lead yourself and others in the year ahead?

Day 3: Luke 3:22. God’s grace at work in the waters of baptism makes you His child. Some Christians stop there and think that’s all there is. It’s true in baptism, God gives all you need to be saved. What some miss out is that God gives even more. God not only gives what you need to be saved, God invites you to be part of the adventure of a lifetime, to sail the high seas of life with Him. Where do you need the power of God’s amazing grace at work to take your next step as His child?

Day 4: Philippians 2:12-13. First, Paul says work out your own salvation, which means your role is important. He goes on to say, "For it is God who is at work in you." You're not doing this project on your own. Cultivating faith, dynamic discipleship development, is empowered by God; it's impossible without Him. How have you seen God work spiritual growth in your life? Where do you need to grow spiritually right now?

Day 5: 2 Peter 3:18. Becoming a Christian is the work of a moment, being a Christian is the work of a lifetime. How do you see yourself growing in grace and knowledge of God? What obstacles are in your way? What stops time with God? How can those be removed by Him? By you? 

Day 6: Isaiah 43:2-3. When life is at its roughest, God is with you and brings forth His best. What rough waters are you facing? Where do you need to remind yourself that God is with you? Take time to thank Him for His presence and ask Him that you will sense His presence, power and peace with you today.

Cultivating-faith-gps-graphicRecent additional GO DEEPER reading opportunities:

  • "Cultivating Faith: A Christ-like Servant Leader Journey" by Sue von Fange & Jason Christ [for adult individual use] {Amazon Kindle #ad} and "Kindling the Heart: Nurturing Young Christ-like Servant Leaders" by Sue Steege [for family devotions] {Amazon Kindle #ad}
  • Experiencing God: Knowing and Doing the Will of God” by Henry Blackaby, Richard Blackaby, and Claude V. King {Amazon Kindle #ad}
  • The Life You've Always Wanted: Spiritual Disciplines for Ordinary People” by John Ortberg {Amazon Kindle #ad}

You can also watch this week's sermon or read the full message & GPS here.


Wise Men: Where To Go When Life is Confusing

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Day 1: Read Isaiah 40:27-28. God is aware exactly of what you are facing. You can pray to Him about anything, but you won’t surprise Him with the situation or circumstances you pray. Somehow Israel forgot that truth back in Isaiah’s day, and so Isaiah reminds them in these two verses. Looking back over the past year, where do you need to remind yourself where God has been working in your life? How have you seen His hand at work in the lives of others? Take time to pray and thank Him. 

Day 2: Read Matthew 2:5-6. Perhaps the last year you have been following what you believe is a God-given vision, you had thought you were finally going to hit your destination, the last step. Then you found out it was just another stop, you wondered where God is, does He know what I’m facing? Where do you need to ask God to guide you to take the next step in your life in the year ahead?

Day 3: Read Isaiah 40:29-30. Isaiah recognizes we all have this in common -- life can wear you out. Isaiah reminds us when life leaves you running on empty, God is able to fill your tank. Where do you feel like your life is running on empty? How can God fill your tank?

Day 4: Read Matthew 2:9-10. The wise men are not just filled with joy, they are on joy with steroids. Mega-Joy!  What is your mega-joy story? You were ready to give up, to throw in the towel, and here comes God making away, giving a new year, a new calendar each day waiting to write your life’s story. Who can you share your mega joy story with today?

Day 5: Read Isaiah 40:31. How are you waiting?  Did you catch Isaiah’s gift while waiting? The Lord will renew your strength. Waiting time is not wasted time. He will renew your strength. Waiting time is God’s refining work time. You don’t give up. He invites you to grow up and be who He made you to be. Where do you find yourself waiting? How might God be using this time to give you His strength?

Day 6: Read Matthew 2:11-12. Why did the wise men give presents to Jesus? And why did you give presents this Christmas? How does giving impact your attitude while you wait?

Recent additional GO DEEPER reading opportunities:

  • “Experiencing God: Knowing and Doing the Will of God” by Henry Blackaby, Richard Blackaby, and Claude V. King (Amazon Kindle #ad)
  • “The Life You've Always Wanted: Spiritual Disciplines for Ordinary People” by John Ortberg (Amazon Kindle #ad)
  • "The Characters of Christmas: 10 Unlikely People Caught Up in the Story of Jesus" by Daniel Darling (Amazon Kindle #ad)

You can also watch this week's sermon or read the full message & GPS here.