Updated: Feb 19
November 30, 2015
A Message from GO! Women's Small Group Bible Study:
Good Morning Ladies!
I hope all of you had a relaxing and blessed Thanksgiving holiday weekend. Today marks not only the last day of November, but the beginning of the Christmas season. For some, it is the beginning of Advent, the preparation for the celebration of Jesus' birth and second coming. In Latin advent (adventus) is the translation of the Greek word parousia, commonly used to refer to the second coming of Christ. Historically, Advent anticipated not only Jesus’ first coming at Christmas, offering the opportunity to share in the ancient longing for the coming of the Messiah, but it was also the season of alert, the anticipation of Jesus’ second coming when he gathers to himself his children and judges the world.
Depending on your childhood, the term Advent and its relationship to Christmas may have never crossed paths. For me, the terms intersected at full speed as an adult. Several years ago, our pastor was concluding a series and announced that the following week he would be starting a new series on Advent as we prepared for the Christmas holiday. Over the next four weeks leading up to Christmas, the Advent series and connection with the Christmas celebration filled a space that I didn't even realize was missing. I am thankful that I had this opportunity to learn about Advent as the season of preparation is upon us now and is relevant to our our current studies about the Holy Spirit.
This past week we studied living by the Holy Spirit. Each day we received a glimpse at the many roles the Spirit plays in our lives as believers and learned that in order to live by the Spirit we must yield to and be led by the Spirit. (Galatians 5:15-18; 25-26). We also reviewed the Holy Trinity (God the Father (will- John 6:38 and 8:28), the Son (word- John 1:14) and Spirit (way- Genesis 1:1-2). Remember in Genesis 1:1-2- the Holy Spirit "hovers". (GO!- Session 1- Breath)
In John 14:16, Jesus promises that the Holy Spirit will never leave us and further tells us in verse 26 that "the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you."
So why the preparation to celebrate the birth of Jesus? The Advent preparation of Christ's birth in the weeks to come serves as a reminder for two things:
1. We are not forgotten
Our heavenly Father (Abba) has a perfect plan for our lives (Jeremiah 29:11- For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future) and thus, we are not forgotten.
(a) As Christians we have a royal lineage. Jesus' birth, life, death and resurrection brought forth the promise of the Holy Spirit.
(b) The Holy Spirit reminds and teaches us Jesus' words (the Father's will) and supplies the power for us to obey.
(c) Through the Holy Spirit we can:
do things we couldn't;
feel things we didn't; and
know things we wouldn't.
2. We are thankful...
Our God sent His Son to this world to do the Father's will (John 6:38- For I have come down from heaven not to do my will but to do the will of him who sent me) and our tailor- made, perfect life plan is only possible because the blood of His Son, Jesus.
Thank you Lord for finding me significant. Thank you for your love. (John 3:16 For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.)
Thank you for the promise of everlasting life. (John 6:39-40 "And this is the will of him who sent me, that I shall lose none of all those he has given me, but raise them up at the last day.40For my Father’s will is that everyone who looks to the Son and believes in him shall have eternal life, and I will raise them up at the last day.”)
Remember to bring your What, Know, Learned chart. We will continue to chart this week. Week 2 Homework- pace yourself. We will be discussing and sharing out this week's work and memory verse. Galatians 5:22-23-Fruit of the Spirit verse with sign language! (est 6:22)
Thank you in advance for being an accountability partner for each other. We will be in the INNOVATION CENTER- Stark County Library (Main Campus)Spread the word and invite someone to Session 2 as we will continue our conversation and study about life in the Holy Spirit in Fruit of the Spirit- Living Beyond Yourself.
Remember, each day is an opportunity for us to...
Lead, Serve, GO!
Have a great week and see you on Tuesday!
Each day we have an opportunity to be the light and salt God has called us to be to others. Matthew 5:13-16 (NIV)