All Things New Online Bible Study | Session 8

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Congratulations on finishing our final week of “All Things New: a Study on 2 Corinthians” by Kelly Minter! Through our time together we’ve discovered the Biblical promises and our assignment as ambassadors for Christ. We see people and circumstances with a new vision- magnified through Christ. What an amazing place to be in life as we shed our former self and embrace who we are in His image. Day after day we are becoming sanctified.

You’ve been called to reflect this image of Christ in you. There will be days when you feel on fire with a passion to share, and other days when you may withdraw for reflection. Seek balance during your mission this side of eternity.

Surrender the people you love to the care of the Lord and allow Him to identify them by His grace. Let them become new creations as they seek and discover Jesus. Plant seeds through your own actions- they are watching. How you respond in the face of adversity or blessing is a reflection of Christ. When a pre-Christian looks at you they are evaluating your faith and perhaps your religion.

“I identify with Christ” should be a reflection of your heart.

“I am new” should be your testimony.

“Join me and know Jesus” should be your invitation to others.

Now, get to work.

This is the beginning of your ministry of GRACE.

ASSIGNMENT FOR THE WEEK:

We are- NEW in Christ!

christine abraham

 

 

 

All Things New Online Bible Study | Session 7

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Welcome back to women’s online Bible study. We’re almost finished with “All Things New: a Study on 2 Corinthians” by Kelly Minter and discussing session seven (week 7) in our community groups. You may have observed that you’re behind or slowing down on the assignments, and it’s not uncommon to want to linger more and delay the finish. I encourage you to finish strong- keep the momentum going and reap the blessings.

Remember the goal of Bible study is your relationship with God. Each day you open the book, answer the questions, pray through your answers…you’re impacting YOUR personal spiritual journey. It’s not about me, not about the leaders who ask you discussion questions each week, not about Kelly Minter..this journey is about YOU and God together. Finish strong.

One of the most powerful lessons from Kelly Minter is on page 167 in your study book this week. At the end of day three she really illuminates the importance of what people are looking for today, and our role as ambassadors for Christ. If you missed that, go back and read it again.

Don’t forget to join a small group discussion, we’ve created lifelong friendships there and it’s pure joy to see your comments each week. We learn from you just as you learn from us…and the center of our table talk is always Jesus.

ASSIGNMENT FOR THE WEEK:

Next week is our final week for the study- finish strong!

christine abraham

 

 

 

All Things New Online Bible Study | Session 6

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We’re on week six of “All Things New: a Study on 2 Corinthians” by Kelly Minter at the Womens Bible Study Cafe! I’m impressed with your diligence in showing up at the weekly small groups and sharing your understanding of the workbook lessons. You’re an excellent example of perseverance, as I know many of you have been tempted by distractions in your study. As we know from our previous study on spiritual warfare (Invisible War by Chip Ingram), the enemy will seek to keep you away from small groups and away from your Bible. Claim your ground when you resist the enemy and he will flee.

When you give your time, money, and talents- plan out how this will be done. Pay attention to where your lights are burning (Luke 12:35) and if you observe they’re dimming- then get into your prayer closet and write a new plan! There’s a great sermon podcast on how our habits work for and against us: http://www.tlc.org/resources/sermons/how-my-habits-work-and-can-change/

If you have a surplus- then get into your prayer closet and write a new plan! There’s a great 5 minute devotional on the REFOCUS app about how a woman and her husband paid off $108,000 in debt in just under 12 months. https://refocusapp.org/share/video/58a10af57dbb9cdf70ced700

Since we all have a ministry assignment from the Lord, it’s important to be held accountable to integrity and Biblical standards. How do you budget your money, time, and talents? Do you give generously, or hold back in fear of the future? Kelly Minter uses the words “spiritual prosperity” (page 137)- what does that look like in your life? Pray on it.

This week we briefly looked at tearing down strongholds. Kelly writes, “So many of our problems and struggles can be traced back to our thinking.”  If you want to go deeper on that topic, an excellent study for is Breaking Free by Beth Moore. It’s imperative for your personal ministry remove strongholds, walk through fiery trials, and develop an unbreakable bond with Christ,

The longer you serve in your ministry, the more you’ll encounter someone who completely misunderstands and misjudges you. Women with a stronghold of insecurity will wrongly assume that you’re jealous of them and they become very defensive when you correct in grace. Women with a stronghold of rejection will imitate your calling, rather than developing their own talents and risking rejection of their ministry. Women who measure themselves against your rod are measuring against irrelevant tools, because we know the rods of this world are flawed and constantly fluctuate (Kelly Minter, page 153).

As we learned in All Things New and also Entrusted from Beth Moore, your ministry is unique to YOU. God is not going to expand your spiritual gifts when you’re copying and depending on the gifts of others. He’s not going to send you a flock to minister to, when you’re disrupting and dividing the flock of another ministry. With the help of the Holy Spirit He will help you break the strongholds of insecurity and rejection. Be mindful not to trample the hearts of others on your way to freedom. Be unique and be courageous in YOUR gifts and RISE UP as you are called by Him.

Study. Connect. Grow.

ASSIGNMENT FOR THE WEEK

  • Read SESSION SEVEN of “All Things New” by Kelly Minter
  • Join a Womens Bible Cafe study group this week
  • (optional): Watch SESSION SEVEN video

Praying for illumination of 2 Corinthians as we complete this study together! I’ll see you in the community groups this week!

christine abraham

 

 

 

All Things New Online Bible Study | Session 5

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Each week gets better and better with “All Things New: a Study on 2 Corinthians” by Kelly Minter! This week we started working on our 11 truths on generosity. There’s a list on page 123 so keep working through the book until you find it. These are awesome truths based on Scripture and worth tucking into your heart- or maybe a card to keep in your handbag.

I’ve marked every page in my book since we started this study and I must say, WEEK FIVE is really my favorite so far! Where do I begin..telling you my testimony of how God has used generosity in my life? I’ll be chatting about it with my small groups this week and give a brief summary here. Many of my friends and WBC ministry leaders have similar stories- so be sure to stop by a group (or two) this week and see how we’ve been blessed by giving. Here’s my story…

FASTING AND GIVING: During a 40-day season of fasting my husband and I made a decision to give up all luxuries, and the money we saved would be donated to charity. We made a list of our expenses for lattes, pizza, dining out, movies, entertainment, clothing, sports, and books. Using this list we calculated a daily cost and committed NOT to spend on those items for 40 days. In the final week of fasting my husband was laid off from work and we learned two things: God was preparing us to live with less for the season ahead, and… there is no better feeling that keeping a promise you made to God. TRUTH: We are careful to be honorable before the Lord, but we also want everyone else to see that we are honorable. (2 Corinthians 8:21 NLT)

HELPING WIDOWS: After my husband lost his job I returned to work while he cared for our children. The Principal’s husband at our Christian school died suddenly, without life insurance to care for his family. I made the uncomfortable decision to sell his home and help his widow and kids, waving my commissions from these sell/buy California real estate transactions. Soon after my husband and I were blessed with a dream house of our own. We downsized and sold that house two years later for a profit 10 times the commission I lost from my act of generosity. I was able to retire from my real estate career right before the housing market dropped, and I started developing online Bible studies. TRUTH: Right now you have plenty and can help those who are in need. Later, they will have plenty and can share with you when you need it. In this way, things will be equal. (2 Corinthians 8:14 NLT)

GIVING TO MINISTRY: While listening to KLOVE radio I was convicted to donate to their pledge drive. We had no money in the bank to spare (again my husband was laid off from work) and I wrote the check and prayed “Lord, help me find the money to cover this check.” I carried the check in my car for three days and finally drove to the mailbox to make the deposit. Within minutes of mailing the check, it fell upon my heart to start a custom jewelry business, and became a successful online store.  TRUTH: Now you should finish what you started. Let the eagerness you showed in the beginning be matched now by your giving. Give in proportion to what you have. (2 Corinthians 8:11 NLT)

I’m not comfortable sharing my personal dynamics of giving, yet I feel transparency is necessary to show evidence of how God has woven generosity into my spiritual journey. May He have the same impact in your life too!

Study. Connect. Grow.

ASSIGNMENT FOR THE WEEK

  • Read SESSION SIX of “All Things New” by Kelly Minter
  • Join a Womens Bible Cafe study group this week
  • (optional): Watch SESSION SIX video

Praying for illumination of 2 Corinthians as we complete this study together! I’ll see you in the community groups this week!

christine abraham

 

 

 

All Things New Online Bible Study | Session 4

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Congratulations on making it this far in “All Things New: a Study on 2 Corinthians” by Kelly Minter! We’re on the fourth week and have four more to go. You’ve learned about Paul, the Corinthians, the Bible, and yourself- as you apply the Word to your own life. Our small groups are engaged with stimulating conversations and it’s been a delight to see you there each week. Good work ladies!

For some of you this has been a challenge. Don’t give up your group or your commitment to study- this is the time where temptation often sets in. You may be a week behind, or feeling pressure and disorganized at home, or just too exhausted at the end of the day to open the book and study. We know how that feels, many of our leaders experience it too!

Be kind to yourself and work through the obstacles. You may need to wait until Saturday to do your lessons all at one time. Or get up 30 minutes earlier each day and put the study ahead of your other scheduled activities. Try setting reminder alarms on your phone and don’t ignore them when they go off! Get creative and make it work. You’ll be so glad that you overcame the obstacles and finished through the book of 2 Corinthians with us.

This week we explored the concept of home and eternal life. Kelly Minter writes on page 75, “I think one of the reasons we’re afraid to think too deeply about eternal life is because we’re not intimate enough with the Lord NOW (emphasis mine) for thoughts of heaven to really comfort us.”

I’ll explain this from my own spiritual journey. Many years ago when a friend’s husband died, I would not attend his funeral because I was too terrified to face death. As a child I attended a religious school that mandated funeral attendance for parish members who did not have family. Instead of seeing funerals as celebrations, I watched through the eyes of an eight year old child and observed sadness and obligation. There was no joy in funerals from my childhood perspective.

As an adult I unknowingly carried this with me until I started Bible studies and my relationship with the Lord grew deeper and deeper with each completed study. Now I embrace death as a celebration and a physical separation of the body. Walking with Christ, I’ve attended memorials (two in the same week) for my aunt, grandmother, father-in-law, suicide victims, and babies. While I still weep and grieve, I grieve with hope instead of fear. This is the result of spiritual growth and transforming my childhood religion into an adult relationship with Jesus.

It’s worth repeating: Bible study is not about duty, it’s about relationship.

Study. Connect. Grow.

ASSIGNMENT FOR THE WEEK

  • Read SESSION FIVE of “All Things New” by Kelly Minter
  • Join a Womens Bible Cafe study group this week
  • (optional): Watch SESSION FIVE video

Praying for illumination of 2 Corinthians as we complete this study together! I’ll see you in the community groups this week!

christine abraham

 

 

All Things New Online Bible Study | Session 3

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We’re studying “All Things New: a Study on 2 Corinthians” by Kelly Minter and just finished reading session three in our study books. Each week has been packed with Biblical wisdom and personal application and many women are telling me how much they enjoy this study. As we study the Corinthians we are discovering many cultural similarities with our modern times.

This week we see Paul encounter a “seismic shift” (page 43) in his relationship with the people of Corinth. He leans in to God for wisdom and direction, and turns away the temptation to seek approval from people. Through our examination this week we discover a man of great integrity and obedience. His words are sincere and not profit-driven. He’s not ministering to feed his pride, win arguments, or create a superior position for himself. Paul ministers in love, modeled by Christ.

But we have this treasure in jars of clay to show that this all-surpassing power is from God and not from us. 2 Corinthians 4:7 NIV

 

In our community groups this week we’d like to encourage you to share your testimony and examine how your life has changed since the veil has been removed from your heart. Are you bold enough to share your story of redemption? If you are hiding Jesus in your heart, let’s examine why that’s happening. Connect with your small group leaders and share your stories as a group. Doing this will prepare you to give an answer for your hope and defend your faith as you minister to others throughout your life.

Study. Connect. Grow.

ASSIGNMENT FOR THE WEEK

  • Read SESSION FOUR of “All Things New” by Kelly Minter
  • Join a Womens Bible Cafe study group this week
  • (optional): Watch SESSION FOUR video

Praying for illumination of 2 Corinthians as we complete this study together! I’ll see you in the community groups this week!

christine abraham