What Are You Doing With Jesus This Week?

I’m so grateful for the dialogue Jesus the Guru, is generating.  But I want it to go way beyond talk about Jesus and focus on talking with Jesus. 

How’s that going for you?

In week one of the series, I encouraged people to read their Bibles and interact with God in prayer as though God was alive (because He is).  After all, Christianity claims a personal God whom we can actually know. I suggested reading something like the Gospel of John to get started – a chronicle about the significance of who Jesus was.  Did you try that?  If so, how has trying to begin or kindle a personal dialogue with God through the Bible gone?  Blog back.  Leave a comment!

In week two, I’m encouraging each of us to change the way we pray.  Instead of asking God to do everything we want, I encouraged us to try to do the things He wants by actually submitting ourselves to Jesus’ incredible teaching.  The rest of the world values Jesus’ teachings immensely.  Many Christians don’t – we pay lip service but not life-service to Jesus’ teachings.  We read his words don’t implement them, and then complain when our life doesn’t work out well.

So I encouraged us to change our devotional habits.  Instead of

  • Praying in the shower, car or drive-thru line, start each day (or evening) with 10-15 minutes of focused prayer and scripture reading.
  • Telling God stuff you want changed when you pray…start by asking God to open you to His Word.

Try spending a week in three chapters of Matthew (Matthew 5-7).  Some suggestion as you read:

  • Ask God to change you (too many Christians ask God to change).
  • Ask God to show you how to apply these teachings directly to your life
  • Shape your prayer around how God might want to shape and change you.

The bottom line:  Jesus is personal and real, and in other religions, you change when you convert. Christians need to change too.

This week, let us know how the journey is going.  What are you reading?  How is it shaping you?  How are you actually discovering/experiencing Jesus today? This week?  Let us know!

– Carey

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8 Comments

  1. Cathy says, April 2, 2008 at 6:44 pm

    Since you have begun the Jesus the Guru series I have been trying my best to fit prayer and Bible reading into my daily schedule. I have always wanted to but like wanting to exercise I find other ways to spend my time. I find for me it works best early in the morning before the hecticness of the day begins. I love the time I am spending. I am learning so much. There are a few things about me that I would like to improve upon (unfortunately my tendancy to gossip with my colleagues for one). I find when I have spent time in prayer and Bible reading in the morning I remind myself of what I should be doing later in the day at work and am less likely to revert back to old habits.

    I have thought a lot about your message on Sunday and talked to my family about it. I have read Matthew 5-7 several times so far. They are great passages for reminding us of the way Jesus taught us to treat others and to be, ourselves. I think I am very comfortable compared to many people who live in other areas of the world so I am less likely to think I need God's help. That is why I think we rely less on prayer and reading the Bible. I have always "wanted" to read the Bible and pray but as you say I wasn't wanting to change I was wanting God to change. I am beginning to realize through prayer, Bible reading and attending Sunday services that I have a lot to be thankful for and a lot to learn. I am so thankful for your suggestions and guidance and am looking forward to this journey.

  2. Jessie says, April 2, 2008 at 8:10 pm

    I find I go through stages, where I read my bible and pray all then time. I am passionate and excited to talk to him. Then there are times where I would rather be watching T.V then talking to God. So I try to commit each night before I go to bed to spend some time with him. The routine helps me stay focused!

  3. Jan says, April 2, 2008 at 11:20 pm

    I've never written on the blog before, but when I read your comments today about nobody responding, I just had to try this (very technologically challenged!!) Even before the Jesus the Guru series began, you suggested trying a "Bible in a year" translation as a way to discipline daily reading. I took your advice, and am amazed first of all how it does help to motivate me to read regularly, and how the combination of Old & New Testament scriptures, as well as a portion of Psalms and Proverbs can be relevant each day.
    Also, praying before I read that I will be able to take something from those scriptures and use it during my day has allowed me to be ready when opportunities come up at work, etc. Thank you for the suggestion – it inspired a long overdue change in my daily devotion routine.

  4. Dave Mc says, April 2, 2008 at 11:47 pm

    I've struggled with daily devotional time for years. "Sporadic" would be a generous description of my daily reading up to this point.
    This year I've started the "one year bible"
    Though I'm a little behind, I'm finding it quite manageable, and easy to get into. I've often found myself reading on beyond what the daily portion is.
    I made sure to buy a small paperback version so that I'd use it more.
    Seems to be working well. Spring will be my bigger test, as I get much busier with work.

  5. Doris Schuster says, April 3, 2008 at 10:52 am

    I've committed much more time to prayer and Bible reading over the past two years than I ever had, and what a change it's made in my daily life. The Bible became alive and speaks to me daily. Once you start, you will want more of it all the time!

  6. Tiffany Wol says, April 3, 2008 at 10:14 pm

    I find I am the happiest when I attend church regularly and read my bible, however I get frustrated a lot because when I seek guidance from God and look to my bible for answers I read passages that frankly I just don't understand and aren't quite relevant to my situation, which eventually deters me from my relationship with God. Which in turn, sort of leaves me in a desperate state. I want so badly to become this person who is organised and gets many things accomplished, but it's evident that since I've sort of distanced myself from God, that I have almost no motivation to do any of the things that I need and want to get done.

  7. Rob pinches says, April 3, 2008 at 10:17 pm

    Well as for my daily devotionals I have a quite time with God each morning and read a single Chapter and then think on this through my day at work I will be in constant prayer throughout my day as I talk with God over each thing that is happening to me during the day. My study is a continuous one and an ongoing one Our small group gets us deep into the word and the work at Inside out is always a learning as well as a teaching ministry. I will regularly go through one or 2 books of the bible in one sitting and just ponder and rethink the truths of Gods word and what it is that God has me learning at this point in my Life. I find that through bible school and other ministries that gods word is actively alive to me and continues to be there in my heart and in my mind through every moment.

  8. Joan Parker says, April 4, 2008 at 11:51 am

    Tiffany, been there (still there sometimes) but keep up the prayer. God listens, even though it's so hard when you feel that He doesn't. Don't give up…..and hey, Sunday is just around the corner! 🙂 We sure need that pick-me-up to get us back to what's real…..love it!

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