We assume every Christian has a Bible that looks like this one — worn down, marked up, and paired with a journal stuffed with multicolored spiritual reflections.
But that’s often not true. Many Christians find it difficult to get into a daily habit of Bible reading. So this week John Piper addressed four common causes of Bible neglect in the Christian life, like: “I don’t read my Bible because . . .
. . . it seems so irrelevant to my life.”
. . . I don’t have time.”
. . . I go to church every Sunday.”
. . . I find it confusing.”
What follows is a slightly edited (and abridged) transcript of his answers.
Powerful article on what we give and why we give. Please check it out!
The poor may not have wealth, but they have dignity. I’ve met people without electricity or running water who swept their dirt floors daily, pressed their clothes neatly, walked miles to work on muddy roads, dodging sewage, and never had a speck of dirt on them. They value their own worth, we should too.
It’s time to think about not only what we give and how we give it, but also why we give it. Just because it makes us feel better (and cleans out our garage at the same time), doesn’t mean it’s the best for those in need. Perhaps we should look a little deeper into our hearts and wallets when we can say, I don’t have money to give to the poor, but I have a lot of stuff. Maybe we need to buy less stuff, so we have more to give?
“We’re not giving what we’re called to give, unless that giving affects how we live—affects what we put on our plate and where we make our home and hang our hat and what kind of threads we’ve got to have on our back. Surplus Giving is the leftover you can afford to give; Sacrificial Giving is the love gift that changes how you live—because the love of Christ has changed you. God doesn’t want your leftovers. God wants your love overtures, your first-overs, because He is your first love.” —Ann Voskamp
As part of our research for Transformational Groups, we surveyed regular group attenders and non-group attenders about their daily spiritual lives—specifically, the time they spend outside of church and church-related activities. Here are some highlights as they concern spiritual disciplines:
67% of regular group attenders read their Bible regularly versus only 27% among non-group members.
64% of regular group attenders pray for their church and/or church leaders regularly. Only 30% of non-group attenders do.
82% of group attenders pray for fellow Christians versus 54% of non-group attenders.
79% of group attenders confess sins to God and ask forgiveness. 54% of non-group attenders do this.”
Check out the rest of this blog. Some really great thoughts here. I loved the idea about assessing your groups to see how they are actually doing
“Impactful groups require more than just attendance; they require a plan.”