The Columns – March 2016

DISCIPLESHIP

I have been a Christian for most of my life. However I do not think I truly knew what that meant until a few years ago. Throughout my childhood I grew up going to church with my family every Sunday. I was involved in youth group, attended Christian schools and summer camps, and was involved in a campus ministry in college. My attendance at church would fluctuate over the years. When I lived in New York, I was particularly drawn to my faith. In a city with over 8 million people, it could be especially lonely.

Moving back to Shreveport and meeting my future husband was the greatest thing that could have happened to me in my growing faith. We both knew that we wanted to make Christ the center of our relationship and our family. He grew up attending First Shreveport. From the first Sunday we attended worship together, I realized I was at home here also. We quickly got involved in a Sunday school class, Pura Vida started by Mike and Susan Adams.

Recently, we have been blessed to have Leigh and Robert Bowman lead our class through a study of Revelation. It has caused me to want to be more intentional in my relationship with Christ. Robert began teaching from Genesis and went through the Old Testament in order to give us context to understand Revelation. For the first time in my life, I feel like this big, scary book at the end of the Bible is no longer terrifying. It is reassuring. It tells us that evil will not prevail, but receive just judgment while we as a body of believers will be protected. That is the biggest realization that I have ever had about my faith.

I have begun to become more intentional with my study of the Bible because of this study of Revelation. I have started trying to memorize verses for the first time, be more involved in Church activities, and work to become a Disciple of Christ. Our church has many great opportunities to get involved and I feel very fortunate to be a part of such a wonderful community of believers.

FEBRUARY GROW OPPORTUNITIES
Memorize
Luke 11:28 – “But Jesus said, ‘blessed rather are those who hear the word of God and obey it!”

Read
First UMC Lenten Devotionals, and the letter of Hebrews this month.

Find an Accountability Partner
Talk and pray about what is going on at home and work.

Go Deeper
Read Hearing God by Dallas Willard – preferably with a friend. This is a great book for the season of Lent to tune our hearts and minds to hear God’s voice giving us direction, insight, wisdom, and assurance. Hearing God is not a trick, but learning the daily disposition of openness.

Act
• Take the Discipleship Survey at members.firstdiscipleship.org. Take 10 minutes to reflect on your understanding of faith and pray about steps you will take to grow this month in wisdom (Your answers are confidential and for your reflection only).

Lead
• Pray for the Costa Rica mission trip (March 26-April 2)

Stay Up To Date
on opportunities to connect, grow, serve & lead.

• View/Print this month’s events calendar.
• View/Print this month’s connect, grow, serve & lead opportunity descriptions.
• Check out our online events calendar.