Article By: Sarah Koontz, Founder of Living by Design Ministries
So many of you are new to our community, and I want everyone to know that the girl who writes Bible studies for Living by Design Ministries is a major work-in-progress.
Aren’t we all?
I love how God transforms us into the image of Christ one small step at a time.
Each step of obedience strengthens our faith and equips us for the next one.
In the words of E.M. Bounds…
Faith needs to be cultivated.
Faith is increased by exercise.
Faith is nourished by sore trials.
He goes on to say, “Faith grows by reading the Word of God and thrives in an atmosphere of prayer.”
Our relationship with God needs to be cultivated and nourished daily.
The best way for us to do this is by setting aside time each day for prayer and Bible study.
Hebrews 4:12 says, “For the Word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.” (NIV)God transforms us into the image of Christ one small step at a time.
Can I be honest with you for a minute?
I didn’t use to be a believer in the value of daily prayer and Bible study.
No, that’s not quite right. I’ve always seen the value in it. I just didn’t think I needed to do it.
In fact, I sort of scoffed at the idea.
I’m embarrassed to admit it now, but I distinctly remember telling a friend, “I don’t really need a daily quiet time. God and I are good.”
I was in my mid-twenties at the time.
I didn’t know it yet, but I was about to enter a long season of unexpected trials and tribulation.
God allowed my life to fall apart so He could rebuild me into His likeness.
It was a slow process.
One step at a time.
Painfully reshaping me.
With each act of humble obedience, I got stronger.God allowed my life to fall apart so He could rebuild me into His likeness.
Somehow, some way, Almighty God transformed the girl who struggled to make time for even five minutes of daily Bible study into the leader of a thriving Bible study ministry.
I am happy to share that I have no room for spiritual complacency in my life anymore.
I need Jesus to fill me up every day, so I have enough strength to do the work He has called me to.
I can’t depend on my own strength and earnestness anymore.
My burdens are too heavy.
My path is too cluttered.
My heart is too needy.
Just knowing that Jesus loves me is no longer enough for me.
I need to live, and breathe, and exist in His love.
My pastor recently preached about Jesus’ prayer life, and my heart spurred into action!
“Jesus labored in prayer all night long. It required hard work, diligent effort, and serious concentration. Prayer is a spiritual struggle—a battle to intercede and commune with the Father. Even Jesus Christ needed wisdom from above and spiritual discernment only the Father could give.”
I’ve been sitting under Pastor Dave’s teaching for nearly a decade. Much of what you see in our Bible studies is the result of His diligent and thorough exposition of God’s Word.
This particular sermon planted a passion for prayer within my heart, and I’ve been immersing myself in the study and practice of prayer ever since!Experience the power of prayer in your life! Join us this summer for our free, six-week guided study through the Psalms, entitled Pray Like David.
Here are some of the most profound lessons I’ve learned about prayer over the past few months:
- Prayer is life’s greatest joy, highest privilege, and most powerful venture.
- Prayer shifts our focus off our abilities and onto God’s unlimited resources.
- Prayer moves us from safe and comfortable to impossible and miraculous.
- Secret, fervent, believing prayer lies at the root of all personal godliness.
- The best of our time, the heart of our time, must be given to prayer.
Although I’ve been a Christian as long as I can remember, I feel that my life of prayer is just beginning.
I’ve always believed in the power of prayer, and now, I’m experiencing the power of prayer for myself.
And I want you to experience it too!
Today, I’d like to invite you to join me for “Pray Like David,” a free online Bible study exploring the life and prayers of King David.
Our Summer Bible Studies are designed to fit into your busy schedule. They are six-weeks long and include just one teaching e-mail per week.
Each Bible Study e-mail is packed with resources to help guide your study throughout the week, including a PDF with five days of guided study and prayers inspired by the Psalms.
The “Pray Like David” Bible Study will help you:
- Learn about the life and legacy of King David
- Study the language of prayer in the Psalms
- Draw near to God through personal prayer
- Infuse your worship with the songs of the Bible
- Rest and rejoice in the beauty of the Psalms
In the same way that children absorb and acquire language from their parents, we will learn the language of prayer by studying the Psalms of David together this summer.Join us for Pray Like David, a free, six-week, online Bible study that will help you learn to pray with confidence.
Sign up today and don’t forget to invite your girlfriends to join us. Bible study is always more fun with friends!
You will receive a welcome letter (+ free digital gifts) after confirming your subscription and the first devotional will arrive in your inbox tomorrow morning.
The book of Psalms is divided into five sections. For the purpose of this study, we will focus our attention on the first section (Psalms 1-41) because David is the author of the vast majority of these Psalms.
Each week we will learn more about the life and testimony of King David as we study a specific genre of the Psalms that is relevant to the circumstances he is facing.
His life will become for us an example on how to persist in prayer, persevere in affliction, and submit to a holy God who allows suffering to shape us into His image.The life of David is an example of how to persist in prayer, persevere in affliction and submit to a holy God who allows suffering to shape us into His image.
His prayers reflect absolute confidence in the Creator. His songs reveal God as the Source of sustaining peace. His story proves the power of prayer in every circumstance.
Dietrich Bonhoeffer encouraged us to view the Psalms as “the prayerbook of the Bible”.
The worshipful language of the Psalms, paired with an understanding of the context in which they were penned, will build a template for our prayers.
The poetry, imagery, and authenticity of David’s prayers will inspire us to rest at the foot of our Beloved.
Thanks for stopping by today, friend!
I hope you’ve enjoyed learning about our free summer Bible study and that you’ll prayerfully consider joining us for the “Pray Like David” study.
If your schedule’s already packed to the brim, please know, this study will be available on-demand anytime after July 1, 2019, so you can start at your convenience.