2020 Trust - · PDF file With His help, try this sequence: Arrive. Sounds funny-odd, I know,...
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Transcript of 2020 Trust - · PDF file With His help, try this sequence: Arrive. Sounds funny-odd, I know,...
Table of Contents Introduction ................................................... pages 1-4
Week One: .................................................. pages 5-11
Week Two: ............................................... pages 12-17
Week Three: .............................................. pages 18-24
Week Four: ............................................. pages 25-31
Week Five: ............................................... pages 32-34
Conclusion ....................................................... page 35
More Readings .......................................... pages 36-37
Introduction Trust shows up in our everyday lives like sentences that create a paragraph. Trust is there, woven throughout the words, in a normal, everyday way. We trust that the sun will rise, the food will be on the table, the businesses and households of our worlds will function. But there are some situations that seem more difficult, like punctuation at the end of those sentences.
An exclamation point when your child moves across the world (Sydney, Australia for Suzanne), and is still there during the pandemic AND the borders are closed. And an exclama- tion point when you or your husband don your mask to go work at the hospital in a COVID-19 unit.
An ellipsis when you have no idea how your husband’s colon cancer is going to turn out, or when COVID-19 restrictions will lift, or when you’ll get a physical hug from your friends again.
The pause of a semi-colon when you don’t have your thoughts together about how to respond to a person or circumstance, but need to. The dash when you need to pause and process something and take note, because life is going so fast even though it’s also so slow.
It seems to me that after studying trust, I’ve found several significant connections:
• Trust and fear often go together, like two sides of the same coin. I think this is a normal part of being a human. The question becomes, which side is toward your palm and which side is up — where do you live? Where does God want you to live? How can you grow in trust if your nature is to be fearful? What does a trusting life look like?
• Trust is a function of growth. Like tree rings, you can have seasons of tremendous, even exponential, growth in trusting God, then have a lean year (or two or five). Ultimately both of these seasons will bring you to God’s throne, where you can rest in His grace and truth.
• Trust is a heavy thing, weighty beyond what we can tally, and is also light as a feather. Trust can help you skip like a child, twirl in its breezes, and fill you with the delight and freedom of this life, or trust can wrench the depths of your heart and soul, like you’re choosing death for yourself.
• Trust is like a diamond, with the light of God being scattered, shimmering, throughout the world through the lives of God’s people. Some of them trust God in death. The martyrs are a brilliant though horrifying flash of explosive light. Some of them trust God in life. They may be like soft, filtered sunlight streaming through the trees; sometimes you’re blinded by its direct luminescence, while sometimes you barely notice the light of God on your shoulders.
• Some days trust is easy. You feel like a warrior, draw your sword, and charge, trusting that God not only has your back, but He’s got victory in store. Doubt? You slayed that dragon weeks ago. Other times, trust is a challenge. You may not feel like you can breathe without anxiety causing you to clutch at your chest. Tears may fill your eyes and become your prayers, and you may feel that trusting God is beyond your ability today. Worry and stress and helplessness, yes; trust and rest, no.
We’re going to explore all this and more this during this peculiar COVID-19 summer. Thank you for joining us, whatever that looks like! We’re glad you’re here. You have a page to do each day, Monday-Friday. Go deep. Pray for yourself and others.
WELCOME TO Summer Study
This study is different: God is the main speaker. The Holy Spirit is within every believer, and He is able to help you understand the Word of God. If you can make time, read the context of the passage of the day; it may help you understand the big ideas of the passage. With His help, try this sequence:
❂ Arrive. Sounds funny-odd, I know, but even though your body may be here, your mind may still be like a shaken snow globe. Take a few deep breaths, give yourself permission to be fully present for 45 minutes, and ask God for focus.
❂ Pray for the Holy Spirit to help you understand the words in front of you.
❂ Read the passage. Don’t hurry; this is not a race. Read to understand it.
❂ Re-read it. Grasp the entire passage, start to finish. ❂ Reflect on what the passage says. Put yourself in it,
personalize it, picture it. Energize your senses: what do you smell? Who and what do you see? What is happening?
❂ Respond to this passage. ❂ Record your thoughts and lessons, and be at peace. ❂ Rest in what the Holy Spirit has given you.
We’ve prayed for you, that your heart, soul, and mind would be like well-turned, rich earth waiting and eager to grow good and glorious things through your time with the Trinity. Trust Him! He is worthy! Much love, the Women’s Ministry Staff
As God grows us, TRUST is in our roots to keep us strong, nourished, and steady; in our trunk to keep us firm and flexible at the same time; in our branches to bring fruit, flowers, nests for others (thanks, Doug Banister), beauty, and health (oxygen!). The first week will center on that image in our lesson and daily pages.
Class day note page Class 1: Trust is like a Tree
Opening questions: Pick two of these four questions to discuss. [15 minutes] 1. As a group, define trust. 2. Give the group one example from your life of a time when you have actively trusted God. What was your circumstance? What happened? 3. What does it look like to NOT trust God? Can you give an example from your own life? 4. What would you say are some of the benefits and blessings of trusting God?
Lesson Notes [20 minutes]
Personal time in the Scriptures [5 minutes] Jot your thoughts after listening to the lesson. Take a moment to be reflective or get into the Scriptures Suzanne mentioned.
Table Time: Getting into the Scriptures for yourselves [25-30 minutes] We’re going to be spending time with Jeremiah today to learn what insights God gave him as he lived in a culture that had abandoned trusting in God.
Today we’re going to look at what we don’t want to trust. Jeremiah, the Old Testament prophet, had to confront the people of God for trusting in other things and people. It was a dark time in Israel’s history; they were actively rejecting God. Look up these verses and write out what we are NOT to trust:
Verses Don’t trust in this Checking my soul (form and answer a question; one example is given for you)
5: 15-18 Is my confidence in my government, in fortifications, in man-made structures?
9: 4-7, 12: 6
Record your insights
Think and pray through your own life: in what are you trusting that God would call out as false and unstable? Discuss this within your group. Keep confidences, please, and allow every person to speak. Allow this group to be safely vulnerable by not trying to fix each other, by listening quietly, and by honoring any difficulties with comfort.
Now let’s find out where to put our trust.
Verses Trust in this: Checking on my own soul
Psalm 9: 7-11
Psalm 56: 3,4
Luke 12: 22-34
John 14: 1-3
Jesus’ greatest treasure (Matthew 6:21) was the Father. His trust and attention were focused fully on Him as He led, taught, and served His disciples and others. What does that teach you?
WrapUp [2-5 minutes]
WEEK 1, DAY 2
How is God using the image of this tree to teach you trust?
Record your insights
Blessed is the one who does not walk in step with the wicked or stand in the way that sinners take or sit in the company of mockers, but whose delight is in the law of the Lord, and who meditates on his law day and night. That person is like a tree planted by streams of water, which yields its fruit in season and whose leaf does not wither— whatever they do prospers. Not so the wicked! They are like chaff that the wind blows away. Therefore the wicked will not stand in the judgment, nor sinners in the assembly of the righteous. For the Lord watches over the way of the righteous, but the way of the wicked leads to destruction.
Psalm 1 (NIV)
How does trusting God connect with obedience to mature your faith?
Record your insights
Then He went down to Nazareth with them and was obedient to them. But His mother treasured all these things in her heart. And Jesus grew in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and man.
LUKE 2:51,52 (NIV)
During the days of Jesus’ life on earth, He offered up prayers and petitions with fervent cries and tears to the One who could save Him from death, and He was heard because of His reverent submission. Son though He was, He learned obedience from what He suffered a