I am blown away, by how many are now following my blog? What? Are you kidding me, people actually want to read what I write? Well, this makes it official, I’m a blogger! I better get a new pair of shoes for this adventure! Blogger, Jogger, get it? Ok, I better stick to blogging.
For precept must be upon precept…Isaiah 28:10
I’m currently doing a Precept Study from Kay Arthur, my all time favorite bible study writer/teacher. The study is on the book of Mark. I ask you, who actually says; “I think I’ll study that little book of Mark?” Not me. To be honest, the title of the study caught my interest; Jesus: Experiencing His Touch.
Have you ever done a Precept study? It’s an inductive study. You focus on looking for key/repeated words and phrases and answering the 5 W’s and H questions (Who, What, When, Where, Why, How) to help you mine golden nuggets of God’s truth. Inductive study is an investigative approach to studying the Bible as the text using three components:
As a new follower of Christ, my first bible study was a Precept study on the book of Matthew at PWOC in Ft. Leonard Wood, MO.
Quiz stop: What does PWOC stands for? Answer in the comments. If you’ve attended, share where!
Immediately and Follow key words in Mark
First reference to immediately is Mark 1:10. Here Jesus was being baptized by John the baptist (locust eating man). The verse reads; “Immediately coming up out of the water, He saw the heavens opening, and the Spirit of a dove descending upon Him…” Next reference is verse 12; “Immediately the Spirit impelled Him to go out into the wilderness.”
After Jesus left the wilderness, He was walking along the Sea of Galilee, and for the first time we see the word, Follow. In verse 17 Jesus says the famous phrase “Follow me and I will make you become fishers of men.” What comes next? Verse 18 of course! Just kidding. Seriously though, in verse 18 we see key word immediately again; “Immediately they left their nets and followed Him.” Keep reading and in verse 19 and 20 you see a similar scene.
I find it ironic (um-hum) that I start a blog, send out notices to others and now have over 170 followers and—I’m doing a study that reminds me of Who I’m following.
As I read chapter 1 of Mark, I envisioned Jesus walking along the sea-shore calling the brothers to follow Him. In my mind’s eye I picture their reaction, with hearts pounding, they drop everything and immediately follow Jesus.
What would it take for you to follow?
October, 1990, my husband Tom, was in the US Army and deployed for Desert Shield (Gulf War). I was beside myself. Full of anxiety, fear, anger, and many other emotions. “What if” thoughts tormented me. Do you know what I mean? Those thoughts that come uninvited, come making you feel like your going insane! “What if Tom didn’t return home? What if he’s badly injured? What if I can’t cope with all of this? What if I become a single parent? What if I don’t have what it takes to survive the what ifs? What if….”
In sheer desperation, I would drive to the Shoppette on Post to buy beer and drink myself to sleep each night. One morning I woke to find our two year old son fully clothed, shoes and all. I had no idea when or where he went to sleep. It shook me to the core. I realize I couldn’t go on this way, I had to get a grip. So I called my happy, happy friend Jeanette and cried on her shoulder. I needed to know what she had that helped her through these tough days. Jeanette listened to me cry my heart out and then simply said, “Girl you need to come to church with me.”
Would church bring the peace I craved?
The following Sunday, I found myself sitting in a tiny chapel at Ft. Leonard Wood, Mo. (aka Ft. Lost in the Woods), on a wooden pew between our two children, then ages 7 and 2. The Chaplain was saying; “There isn’t anything you can do that would be bad enough or good enough to make Jesus forgive you or love you any more than He does right now. He is the only One who knows all about you, loves you and has a plan for your life. He is calling you right now to come and give your life to Him. Will you come?”
Wow! My heart is literally pounding right now, almost as heard as it was then. When I heard the call, it was like someone took over my legs and I sprung to my feet. Tripping over the people sitting in the pew, I immediately made my way to the front of the church saying, “Yes! Yes, I will follow this Jesus!” I couldn’t explain how I new He could be trusted, I just knew with a desperation that I needed Him. I was tired of doing life on my own, trying to make up for past mistakes, trying to cover up who I was by putting masks on every day. This Jesus, I knew in my heart, without any doubt, that I should immediately follow.
Lesson #2 Immediately respond to the call to Follow Jesus
I’ll be honest, following Jesus in the beginning was amazing. I was filled with all this new found joy—but following is not always easy. As I’ve grown over the years, He’s called me to follow Him many places. Some great places, full of joy and peace, others difficult full of hurt and conflict, internal and external. Currently I’m following Him on a path and the way is not clear. I feel “undone” not knowing whats coming next, what to expect or even what to do.
Here I raise my Ebenezer
In times like these, I go back to my Ebenezers (blog topic for another time), and remember; He’s never let me down! Never lead me astray! Never left me, even when I choose to stray off the path. He’s with me all the way! I have learned, there is no sweeter time than when I’ve followed Him. He is the Leader!
Thanks for following this blog. My prayer is, as you read, you will see the One that I follow and you will follow Him with me! (remember Lesson #1 from blog post Life Ain’t no Picnic? God calls us to attend LU–Life University together!)