Your Personal Grow-Pray-Study (GPS) Guide

Christmas

Get Ready to Believe This Christmas - Send the Messenger

Christmas-messenger

Pastor Burkey  delivered this week’s message from God’s Life-building Word based on Malachi 3:1-2 as we prepare our path for Christmas 2015.

Monday: Read Malachi 3:1-2. In these 2 verses, there are 2 messengers, fire, soap, fear and an invitation to faith. As you think about this weekend’s message and these verses from Malachi 3, what is the Holy Spirit speaking into your life? How is He leading you to respond?

Tuesday: Read Malachi 3:1-2 and Luke 3:3-4. The goal of God is to make us ready to meet Him. How do the words of Malachi 3 connect with Luke’s words about John the Baptist? Where do you need to make a straight path? As you get ready for Christmas, what spiritual preparations are you making?

Wednesday: Read Malachi 3:1-2 and Philippians 1:6. The gift of God is His presence with us. In Jesus, God comes to the temple and comes to give His life. Where has God recently surprised you with a greater awareness of His presence? What good work would you like to see Him bring to completion?

Thursday: Read Malachi 3:1-2 and Psalm 66:1-4. The greatness of God is terrifying! When do you find yourself aware of the awesome power of God? In the psalm reading, the word SELAH is used. Though no one is sure what that Hebrew word means, some suggest SELAH means “pause and think about that”. Where do you need to pause and think about God today?

Friday: Read Malachi 3:1-2 and Luke 3:5-6. The grace of God is life transforming. As Luke continues his quotation of Isaiah to describe John the Baptist’s work, he describes every impediment, blockage or curve being removed that would slow our connection with God. Where do you need to fill in low spots or smooth out rough spots in your relationship with God? In your relationship with others?

Saturday: Read Malachi 3:1-2 and Philippians 1:9-11. After our look at Malachi 3:1-2 this week, what lessons will you remember and live out in the days ahead? As you pray today, personalize Paul’s prayer in Philippians 1 for yourself, for someone you know, and for our church.

You can Go Deeper this week by reading the following book -- Praying the Names of Jesus by Ann Spangler.


Get Ready To Believe This Christmas: Fulfill The Promise

Christmas-path

Pastor Burkey  delivered this week’s message from God’s Life-building Word based on Jeremiah 33:15 as we prepare our path for Christmas 2015.

Monday: Read Romans 3:10. If righteous means to straighten, where do you see sin's crooked damage at work most today in our world? In your life?

Tuesday: Read Romans 3:23. Since we all are sinners, what sin do you need to confess? Spend time in prayer confessing your sins to God and thanking Him for His forgiveness.

Wednesday: Read Jeremiah 33:15. From a tree stump comes a true Savior! What sin has an addictive hold in your life? How can Jesus provide the help you need?

Thursday: Read Matthew 1:21-23. Immanuel means “God with us”. Where do you need to be aware of God’s presence in your life? Who can you pray for today to have a greater awareness of God at work in their life?

Friday: Read Jeremiah 33:16. What difference does it make that some of the prophecies about the Messiah were given to an imprisoned prophet in a besieged city? What promise of God gives you special hope today?

Saturday: Read Romans 3:22-24. Why does God offer righteousness to everyone? What makes Jesus gift of righteousness such good news for you personally? 

You can Go Deeper this week by reading the following book -- The Bible Jesus Read: Why the Old Testament Matters by Phillip Yancey.


Christ the King: Our LORD’S Kingship

Christ-is-king

Pastor John  delivered this week’s message from God’s Life-building Word based on Psalm 93:1-2 (BELIEVE).

Monday: Read John 13:13; Acts 2:36; Revelation 19:16. Titles reveal important information about the person to whom they refer. What are Jesus’ titles in these passages of Scripture? Summarize what these titles reveal about Jesus.

Tuesday: Read Colossians 1:16-17; Colossians 1:18, Romans 14:9. According to these Scriptures, what is Jesus Lord of? Do you agree that Jesus should have the same place in our hearts that he holds in the universe? What changes, if any, need to be made in your life to more accurately reflect your answer?

Wednesday: Read Colossians 3:23-24. In this Scripture, how does Paul tell us that we can honor the LORD our God and King? What are habits in your life that do not honor God in this way and what are habits that do honor God?

Thursday: Read Luke 7:46-49. What is a good way to evaluate if Christ is truly LORD of your life? What does the Lordship of Jesus mean to you personally?

Friday: Read Luke 18:28-30. How was the Lordship and Kingship of Jesus seen in the lives and behavior of the twelve apostles? How did Jesus respond? Where in your life have you “left home or wife or brother?” Was it easy to do or difficult to do? How did you see God’s strength holding you up during this time?

Saturday: Read Philippians 3:13-15. What attitude do we see faith in Jesus Christ placing in the heart of a mature Christ-Follower?  What is the prize to which God is calling you?


Take The Blessing

Read Titus 3:5. Paul affirms that our relationship with Jesus comes by God’s grace, by God’s gift.

The word Paul uses for grace refers to God’s favor bestowed on us. Grace refers to the gift of salvation and the gift of His power and presence at work in our life each day.

Where do you find yourself needing to leverage God’s gift of grace in your life today?

Where might He be calling you to share His grace in the lives of others to enrich their lives?


Lose The Pride

Read Mark 1:7. John counters the pride of growing popularity with eyes on the Messiah and that gives John humility.

Since the Bible often warns us that “pride goes before the fall,” how are you doing in staying humble in your walk with God?

Is there an area of pride that is blocking your relationship with God?

What might you need to confess to get prepared for Jesus coming at Christmas and into your life today?

 


Make Repentance Your Cornerstone

Read 1 John 1:8-9. The first of Martin Luther’s 95 theses read,

“When our Lord and Master Jesus Christ said, “Repent.”

He willed that the entire life of believers be one of repentance.”

Since you can’t un-sin, but only re-pent, how might you make repentance a part of your daily life?

How have you been growing this week in living a life of repentance?

How will you continue to grow in the days ahead?


Look To A New Beginning Through Christ

Read Mark 1:5. Cris Carter said,

“When you’ve got a dark chapter in your life, people will try to make that the final chapter in your life. But it doesn’t have to be. For me, when it got the darkest, I said ‘this is not going to be the end of my book.’”

What dark chapter of your life do you need to turn over to God for a new beginning?

How did John the Baptist provide that for the Jews of His day?

How is God doing that for you today?


Repentance Is The Start

Read Mark 1:4. Fred Hartley has made these observations about repentance and its power in your life.

  • Repentance is the sign that lets you know, “You’ve traveled too far down the wrong road; it’s time to turn around.”
  • Repentance is the fuel gauge that tells the driver, “You need to stop and fill your tank.”
  • Repentance is a gulp of air to a drowning man.
  • Repentance is the word that gives me a second chance.

What illustrations could you use to describe what it means to repent?

Why is repentance the essential starting point for our relationship with Jesus?

When did repentance become more than a religious word in your life?


The Big Give Among Us

 320px-Nativity_tree2011

Merry Christmas!

Phrase 1: The Word became flesh -- God becomes human like us. [Hebrews 2:14-17]

Phrase 2: and made his dwelling among us -- God does life with us in our world. [John 1:14]

Phrase 3: We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, -- Jesus lets us see what life with God looks like. [Hebrews 1:3]

Phrase 4: full of grace and truth -- Jesus brings His world into ours. [Matthew 6:10]

All offerings from Christmas Eve and Christmas Day will be split between Amor MinistriesFrances KitchenLutheran Malaria, and helping those in need at La Mesa Dale Elementary School.  You can still give online here.


The Big Give

Nativity

Merry Christmas Eve!

Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord. (Luke 2:11)

Receive the Savior who brings life and forgiveness: Luke 2:14, Matthew 1:21.

Believe the promises God makes, He delivers: Luke 2:7; Luke 2:12.

Follow the master now and for eternity: 1 John 4:9-10, Colossians 2:6.

CONCLUSION: The Big Give: John 3:16.

All offerings from Christmas Eve and Christmas Day will be split between Amor Ministries, Frances Kitchen, Lutheran Malaria, and helping those in need at La Mesa Dale Elementary School.  You can still give online here.