It's Summer!  And with more daylight hours, there's more time and renewed energy to start focusing on your relationship with God.  Download this Summer Goals sheet from the website under For Kids: Seasonal and Holiday Resources.  But this isn't just for kids!  Figure out what your goals are for this summer too!

While you're at it, check out the new devotional for families with young kids based on Colossians 3:12.  Also under For Kids: Seasonal and Holiday Resources.  Try it and let me know what you think. 

In a music philosophy class my freshman year of university, we learned that all of our musical talents are from God, and thus all credit belongs to Him. Our motto in the music department, and now my own motto for life has been "Soli Deo Gloria." It is what Bach (and Handel, as seen in the picture) wrote at the end of all his musical manuscripts, and means: To God alone be the Glory.
How exciting it is to share that there have been 1,000 page visits to my website in the past 3 months. I'm praying that God will use this site to reach out to people and get them excited to grow in their relationships with God, or even to meet God for the first time. Some of the materials are being pinned over and over on Pinterest, and it is exciting to think that viewers may come to this page and read the Gospel for the first time. Please join me in praying for this ministry, and feel free to contribute your own ideas or experiences as well. Praise God for the resources that have already been shared. Soli Deo Gloria!
It's been a month since I posted last, but not because I haven't been working on ideas.  I'm preparing for the summer months, when working on this website will be one of my main goals.  I have many ideas for getting more information and study helps out for you all this summer.

In the mean time, I wanted to consider what it means to be a disciple.  Our sermon tonight at church was not new to me, but it was a great reminder, and one I wanted to share.

In the 1st Century, Jewish education had three levels:

House of the Book

-PARTICIPANTS: all children
-AGE: until 12
-GOAL: Study and Memorize the first 5 books of the Bible

House of Study

-PARTICIPANTS: the best students
-AGE: 12-14
-GOAL: Study and Memorize the rest of the Old Testament


-PARTICIPANTS: the best of the best
-Had to ask the rabbi, if the rabbi consented he would ask the student to follow him
1. To learn the rabbi's yoke (teachings/views)
2. To do what the rabbi does
3. To carry on the rabbi's work
Jesus broke the tradition and asked average people to "follow him."  Anyone can become a disciple of Jesus, and our goals are the same:
1.  To learn the teachings of Jesus
2. To become like Jesus
3. To carry on Jesus' work

The disciples that Jesus asked to "follow him," immediately left their nets, their families, their businesses, and followed Jesus. 
Is there anything in your life that you need to leave behind in order to become a disciple?  What are you doing to make these goals your own?

Thanks to Dom who spoke tonight and shared these reminders from Mark 1:16-20
Now that the website is up and running, how do I let people know that there are new resources?  This website will, God willing, continue to grow and share more ideas.  If you're interested in getting updates and new ideas for your own personal Bible study, or for teaching the Bible to your kids, subscribe!  Why not try it, you can always unsubscribe =}  e-mails will go out randomly, but check for updates about once a week. 

People have asked me why I'm putting this website together.  My response is, "Because I saw the need of people who wanted to know how to study the Bible, and God called me to fill that need."  Almost everything on this website is someone else's idea, not my own.  I don't make money off of advertising, and my name and picture are not included.  It's not about me.  It's about teaching others how to have a real relationship with God.  I hope that's what you find here.  It also means I couldn't have put it together without the many ideas of others.  If you have an idea you'd like shared on this website, let me know!  If I think it's a good fit, I'll gladly add it!
The Bible in general has many applications to our lives.  But if you sit down and read a paragraph or two, the passage can sometimes feel irrelevant in day-to-day living.  There are many different ways to find applications when studying the Bible, but this weekend at church, our pastor shared two questions that reminded me of the basics we should be watching for as we study His WordHe said, ask yourself how the section of the Bible you're reading answers these two questions:
                                            WHO IS GOD?
                                HOW DO I FOLLOW HIM?
Even kids can answer these two questionsTry praying and looking for these two things today or tomorrow as you read, and share what you learn with others!

One of the key things I've learned about Bible study is that I like variety.  Sometimes I want to write an outline and do a word study from the original Greek, but other days I'd rather not.  Having an assortment of Bible study options makes understanding the Bible more fun.  People learn in different ways too.  I've found that I'm very visual.  Pictures, timelines and maps are very helpful in seeing the big picture.  Sometimes I'll go an entire year basically studying in the same way, other times I only go for a couple of weeks or months before changing how I study.  The key is being consistent in studying, not how you study. 
Tonight, for example, I had a long day at work and wondered if I'd be able to sit down and be really productive during my Bible study time.  Instead of pulling out my study on James, I printed off the James page from the Picture Smart Bible.  I studied the same book, but looked at it in picture form.  It was a nice break from the day to color, and look at an overview of James' letter.
One of my goals for this website is to encourage people to explore different forms of Bible studyHopefully you can find a format that works best for you!

Tonight while I was with other believers, listening to our Pastor speak about Living With Devotion, I was convicted about studying the scripture.  How much time will I spend studying the Bible vs. setting up this website for others.  I believe that God is calling me to use this website as a ministry to others.  Even in one day I can see a rise in the number of people visiting this site.  But God also wants to continue to work in my life through my own study of the scripture.  So, I've decided to commit to making sure that everyday that I come to work on this blog, I take time to study the Bible and pray first.  I will be learning right alongside everyone else who comes to study His word!
What are you committing to?  How often will you be studying God's message to you?
For many years now, I've been looking for ways to share my ideas on Bible Study, and specifically, teaching children the Bible.  I'd always thought God was just telling me to wait until I had kids.  That hasn't happened yet, but I still felt a desire to share my ideas with others.  Last week the sermon at our church was about how to study the Bible.  I wanted to go up to the pulpit and say, "There's so much more!!"  The speaker did a wonderful job of a quick overview, but I got the feeling that people needed more concrete ideas.

I had previously considered creating a blog about teaching music, but every time I considered it, I felt God saying "No."  After the sermon last weekend, I felt God saying, I want you to take the desire of teaching, your desire of sharing My word, and share it with anyone willing to read it on the web.  With spring break here, I had a week to start putting my ideas together!  So here it is.  Feel free to comment, suggest ideas, or anything else!

Weebly offers a free web site service that included both blog and website features, and that's why I went with them.


    I'm a teacher who has found that many people need a few tips or pointers to get started on their personal Bible Study Journey.


    July 2013
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