In the Word Wednesdays – Summer 2014 – Week Five

This week, we discovered what a life progressing toward holiness looks like.

If you’re not able to watch the video, the highlights and discussion questions are provided below for you.

I can’t wait to hear your responses to these questions…

Day 1

Putting On the New Self

We studied Ephesians 4:17-24. God didn’t create us to be like the world, he created us to be holy as he is holy. We must anchor ourselves in the truth of God so that we don’t drift into living as the world lives.

Discussion Question: 1)

What challenges you most in the struggle to be like God rather than the world? What do you find helps you “put off the old self” and put on your “new self”?

Day 2

Shining in the Dark

Using Galatians 5:16-25, Ephesians 4:25 to 5:7, and Colossians 3:1-17 we compared the life of someone who conforms to the world with the life of someone transformed by the Spirit.

Discussion Question 2)

What does “walking by the Spirit” look like in your life? Let’s help each other by sharing what helps us cooperate with God’s conforming us to the image of Christ.

Day 3

A Time of Self-Examination

Kathy and the Scriptures walked us through a pretty intensive time of self-examination. The purpose of our reflection was not to discourage or overwhelm, but rather to give us an opportunity to allow God to speak into our hearts about what he wants to transform in us at this particular time in our lives.

Discussion Question 3)

Because of the very personal nature of our work during this day’s homework, I’m not going to ask you to share the specifics of what your self-examination produced. However, I would love to know how this process impacted you? How did this exercise impact your feelings about yourself and God. What, if anything, did you learn about your relationship with God?

Day 4

Counting the Cost

In Day 4, we acknowledged the following four costs involved with pursuing holiness:

  1. Self-righteousness and pride; yep, those are the first to go if we are to become like Christ.
  2. Our sin. Duh! But this one is hard, because as the famous philosopher Kenny Chesney sings, “It’s always your favorite sin that does you in!”
  3. A life of ease. The path of least resistance is no longer the path God calls us to take.
  4. The favor of the world. Instead we must live for an audience of One! This is a difficult thing for us people pleasers.

Discussion Question 4)

What emotions does counting the cost stir up in you?

If this process left you feeling a bit discouraged or questioning these costs, review the Scripture passages Kathy had us read on Day 4 (see pages 121 and 122) and read Kathy’s description of the life of a person who is willing to incur those costs which as Paul noted in Philippians 3:8 are nothing compared to the “surpassing worth of knowing Christ.” Let God encourage and inspire you through those words on the page.

Day 5

Not a Quick Fix

2 Corinthians 3:16-18 and 1 Timothy 4:7-8 highlight for us the cooperative nature of this process. God’s Spirit within us does the spiritual transformation within our nature, but we must be active participants in that process.

Paul likened this process to that of physical training for sports.  An athlete must show up and actively participate in the training sessions. Those sessions transform the person’s body making it capable of running the race set out before him or her.

Discussion Question 5)

Do you have a spiritual training program? If so, what are some of the things you incorporate into your training program for holiness/godliness? How do those things help you grow in holiness?

Preview Week 6

Practically Embracing Holiness in Everyday Life

In our last week of homework, Kathy will show us ways we can pursue holiness which paves the way for intimacy in our relationship with God.

Memory Verse:

I chose the following verse for our final week of this study.

Romans 12:2, NIV

Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.”

I will be praying for you this week! I’m so grateful you are joining me on this journey. Can’t wait to read your comments. 

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Blessings of truth and grace,


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