Preparing with Hope January 15, 2023

Preparing with Hope:  January 15, 2023

Disciple--In Matthew 28:19-20,  we are told to go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit and teaching them everything that I have commanded you.  So, we need to know what Jesus did and said and we need to help others do the same.  It is our hope that every week you will dig a little deeper into the section of the Bible that we will be teaching from on the coming weekend.  And that you will help others to do the same.  Here are some "tools" that will help you do this.  
  • Before you do anything else...pause to pray and listen.  Set aside a minute or two to allow God to calm yourself to "hear" what He has to say as you read the Bible for the week.  If you hear anything (this might be that you "think" something and wonder if this is God speaking or your own thoughts.  I can't tell you for sure but we are encouraged to "test the spirits" in 1 John 4:1 to see if these thoughts are from God or not.  Compare what you think you are "hearing" God say with Scripture.) write it down.  This will allow you to come back later to examine it and "remind" yourself of what God was saying. 
  • Next, read the section in the Bible.  Read it through once in one translation without pausing. (I use the Youversion Bible App to let me examine various translations.  A couple that I enjoy is the NIV-this is the most used version, ESV-this is the considered the most literal and accurate version, NLT-this is written in a format and language that is easier to understand, and most recently I have enjoyed TPT-this is a few books in the Old Testament and the entire New Testament.) And then read it again through another translation.  Notice some of the different words that are used.  Try and see the theme that are present though it all and if you can, narrow that "theme" down to a sentence or two.  
  • After you have read through the verses a couple of times, ask "How does this apply to me? To our world?  Are there any specific things that God is asking you to do?  (One thing I often do is literally mark my Bible when it tells me to do something.  And then I doing it?)
  • And finally, after you have read the verses do you have any questions?  Is there anything that you may not be "settled" on?  This is why we do life together.  This is why we have small groups.  (Small groups are a GREAT way for you to ask these deeper, probing questions.  If you want to join a small group, great!  E-mail us at This is why we gather on Sunday. (We don't always answer everyone's questions on Sunday, but we might.  And if you still have questions don't hesitate to reach out to ask.)   If you have questions, don't give up!  Keep searching.  Keep asking!  
This coming Sunday (January 15, 2023)  we are going to continue to discover how God is calling s to "live differently in 2023".  We'll be looking at Colossians 3:1-17  and comparing it with Ephesians 4:17-5:13 together.   I want to encourage you to begin reading your Bible now!  God's speaking!   


Tim Taylor - January 9th, 2023 at 12:43pm

Please share your comments here. Is this helpful? I hope so. I'm praying for you!

Anah Shampine - January 9th, 2023 at 1:10pm

This is great! Thanks!

Philip Johnson - January 9th, 2023 at 1:36pm

Thanks Tim. I really appreciate you putting this together; it is very helpful for me to prepare and get as much from worship as possible.

Suzanne Charity - January 9th, 2023 at 3:18pm

Yes, This is very helpful, thank you!

Marilyn Schippers - January 9th, 2023 at 3:40pm

Thank you for doing this. Very helpful!!

Brandon Steury - January 10th, 2023 at 8:05am

Tim, I love this! It makes it feel like a conversation. I’m a person who does better when I can mull something over, so I will be ready for a deeper dive into the topic. Thank you!