DISCOVER EVERYDAY WAYS THAT FAITH WORKS

→  11 Weeks Walking through the Book of James

DISCOVER EVERYDAY WAYS THAT FAITH WORKS

11 Weeks Walking through the Book of James

WEEK 4

CORE EXERCISES

VERSE OF THE WEEK

VERSE OF THE WEEK

James 2:1-13 NLV

“My brothers, show no partiality as you hold the faith in our Lord Jesus Christ… Listen, my beloved brothers, has not God chosen those who are poor in the world to be rich in faith and heirs of the kingdom…If you really fulfill the royal law according to the Scripture, “You shall love your neighbor as yourself,” you are doing well. If you show partiality, you are committing sin. So act as those who are to be judged under the law of freedom.  Mercy triumphs over judgement.”

GOSPEL

➝  Reimagine Your Story

Today, honor God by reflecting on your failures and see them through the lens of His Mercy. You aren’t awesome. But, he continues pursuing your heart. Let His mercy triumph over judgement. 

More Ideas:

  • Read through the Beatitudes in Matthew 5:3-12 and journal your thoughts about what this reveals about the heart and character of God.
  • Instead of starting your day rushing around preparing to leave the house – Stop for 5 minutes to reflect on the person you are becoming in Jesus (ie: loving, patient, kind, peaceful, joyful).  Instead of focusing on your brokenness, recenter yourself in the hope of his wholeness.

      PRAYER

      ➝  Invite God’s Good

      Take a minute to invite God to open your eyes to the people you’ll encounter today. Who do you gravitate towards?  Who do you avoid? Confess the ways you treat people differently. Invite God to turn your heart towards the hurting.  

      More Ideas:

      • What difficult meetings or conversations do you have coming up?  Take a minute to quietly ask God for wisdom and peace before going into it.  Imagine you are taking the Gospel into that meeting – bringing a spirit of peace and dignity to anyone involved.
      • Take a prayer drive.  Spend time driving around your community, your workplace, or where you spend your time. Keep the cell phone off and the radio down. Pay attention to what you see and observe and invite God to awake your heart to the everyday opportunities of your life.  
      • Have a family meal with your kids.  Use the time to tune into the ways God is at work in each family member.  Value their spiritual journey as much as your own. Before ending dinner, take time to pray together.  

            UNITY

            ➝  Journey With Others

            Mercy is learned in community. Are you accountable to others? Do you avoid vulnerability when it gets uncomfortable. Take inventory and humbly lean in.  Unite yourself with others. 

            More Ideas:

            • Reach out to someone in your life that you have avoided or left on bad terms.  Did they wound you? How have you wounded them? Apologize and reconcile for the sake of your wholeness and the Gospel.
            • Take inventory of your relationships.  Are they healthy or is there a pattern of conflict?  Grab a someone who is wise and knows you well. Invite them to honestly speak into your life about your relational habits.  Be open to their wisdom.

                  MISSION

                  ➝  Identify Your Unique Opportunities

                  Consider making margin in your life for the marginalized.  Give dignity to 1 person you normally wouldn’t associate with by serving them in a unique and personal way.  

                  More Ideas:

                  • Create margin in your home for the marginalized by having an honest conversation with your spouse or kids.  How can you use what God has given you to help those who are marginalized? Talk about how the use of your money reflects your values.
                  • Create a Family Generosity Fund.  Give to it regularly and brainstorm ways you can help someone in need.
                  • Calendarize the important.  Create space in your schedule where you can deliberately give yourself to people who have nothing to offer you.  Mentor a kids through KidsHope, volunteer at a shelter, take someone out to lunch. Invite someone into your home.  

                        RIGHT NOW MEDIA

                        GET BAPTIZED

                        START GIVING

                        WEEK 3

                        CORE EXERCISES

                        VERSE OF THE WEEK

                        VERSE OF THE WEEK

                        James 1:19-25 NLV

                        “My Christian brothers, you know everyone should listen much and speak little. He should be slow to become angry. A man’s anger does not allow him to be right with God.Put out of your life all that is unclean and wrong. Receive with a gentle spirit the Word that was taught. It has the power to save you.

                        Obey the Word of God. If you hear only and do not act, you are only fooling yourself. Anyone who hears the Word of God and does not obey is like a man looking at his face in a mirror. After he sees himself and goes away, he forgets what he looks like. But the one who keeps looking into God’s perfect Law and does not forget it will do what it says and be happy as he does it. God’s Word makes men free.”

                        GOSPEL

                        ➝  Reimagine Your Story

                        Create a compelling picture of the person you are becoming. Imagine being free of anger, double-mindedness, and sin. See your life through Jesus’ eyes. 

                        More Ideas:

                        • Read Ephesians 2:4-5, 8-10  We are His masterpiece – His work of art.  Write a list of “I Am” statements that capture who you are in Jesus.  Read through this for a week straight. Examples: “I AM in Christ”, “I AM a loyal husband”, “I AM not my worst day”, “I AM not my best day”.
                        • Are you a morning person?  Night owl? Are you most creative when you are around others?  Alone? Nature? Whatever it is, carve out time in your schedule when you are most creative.  Use that time to really brainstorm who you are in Jesus, and who is is crafting you to be.

                            PRAYER

                            ➝  Invite God’s Good

                            What you feed grows/what you starve dies.  How are you feeding anger or bitterness? Confess this to God today, and invite Him to replace that hurt with love. 

                            More Ideas:

                            • Make a list of people and memories that have harmed or wounded you emotionally.  Replace any negative thoughts with prayer. Think of specific ways you can be praying for each of them by name and asking God to bless them.  Invite God to heal your wounds.
                            • Fast from social media for a set period of time.  Resist the urge to judge others and instead use your energies to listen to the Word through scripture reading and prayer.
                            • When you wake up take a moment to pray, “Lord have mercy on me a sinner”.  Repeat this prayer throughout the day when you find yourself being tempted to act in a way contrary to Christ.  Pray it again as you lay down in bed.

                                UNITY

                                ➝  Journey With Others

                                Meet with someone this week that you look up to spiritually. Open up about your inner life and ask for their wisdom. Spend more time listening than talking. 

                                More Ideas:

                                • Ask for forgiveness from someone you have wronged.  Be specific. Seek to understand how you have wronged them – listen and humbly learn from your sin.
                                • Email, call, or text a spiritual hero of yours.  Ask them about their spiritual habits. Discover and learn ways they anchor their identity in Jesus.
                                • Is there an area of your life you find hard to let go of anger?  Confess it to another Christ-follower and invite them to pray with you and hold you accountable to releasing that anger to Christ.

                                    MISSION

                                    ➝  Identify Your Unique Opportunities

                                    Today, give dignity to someone you often avoid or ignore.  Give honor or respect to them in a tangible way and put their interests before your own. 

                                    More Ideas:

                                    • What have you been saving up to buy for yourself?  Are you willing to consider redirecting that money to bless someone else who is struggling?  Will you do it?
                                    • Think of a particular need in your community or workplace.  Grab your friends, your kids, or coworkers and launch a fundraiser to go entirely towards meeting that need.  
                                    • Not a fan of fundraising – rally people in your circle of influence to volunteer at a shelter or non profit.  Feeling extra excited? Find out how your family or organization can support that need on an ongoing basis. God has blessed you in a unique way so that you may bless others.

                                        RIGHT NOW MEDIA

                                        GET BAPTIZED

                                        START GIVING

                                        WEEK 2

                                        CORE EXERCISES

                                        VERSE OF THE WEEK

                                         JAMES 1:4,13-18

                                        4 Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything. 13 When tempted, no one should say, “God is tempting me.” For God cannot be tempted by evil, nor does he tempt anyone; 14 but each person is tempted when they are dragged away by their own evil desire and enticed. 15 Then, after desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, gives birth to death.

                                        16 Don’t be deceived, my dear brothers and sisters. 17 Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows. 18 He chose to give us birth through the word of truth, that we might be a kind of firstfruits of all he created.

                                        GOSPEL

                                        ➝  Reimagine Your Story

                                        Reflect on what your habits reveal about your desires. Habits reinforce identity. What is one habit you can adopt or give up?

                                        More Ideas:

                                        • Write down Colossians 3:1-2. Read it in the morning as you are getting ready for the day.  Let it reframe how you start your day.
                                        • Spend time imagining what life would look like with an undivided heart.  What would it look like to be driven by 1 primary motivation?
                                        • Adopt 1 Gospel-Identity Habit such as:  Be Generous. Forgive Others. Be a Peace-Maker.  Engage in a rhythm of prayer. Pursue “things from above”.

                                          PRAYER

                                          ➝  Invite God’s Good

                                          Take a break today & reflect on ways you’ve acted selfishly.  Take a moment to invite God to guide the rest of your day.

                                          More Ideas:

                                          • Pray through Psalm 51:1-10
                                          • Turn off your phone today for an uncomfortable amount of time.  Put it in a drawer, or give it to someone else. When you find yourself wanting reach for it, or becoming uncomfortable without it – recognize how often we fill our “down-time” with things other than God.  Take that moment to ask God to be the center of your life.
                                          • Are there any habits that cause you shame?  Take time to journal about your temptations and how you respond, as well as how you feel when you resist them.  Write a small prayer at the end of your entry as an act of trust.

                                            UNITY

                                            ➝  Journey With Others

                                            Struggling with temptation can be lonely. Find strength in the struggle by finding 1 person you can be vulnerable with.

                                            More Ideas:

                                            • Text 1 person, ask them to pray for you.  Ask how you can pray for them.
                                            • Enroll an accountability partner that you meet with every month or so.  Share with them your struggles, celebrate the ways you resisted temptation, and pray together.
                                            • Find a Christian book that tackles your area of struggle and read it with a group of your friends.

                                              MISSION

                                              ➝  Identify Opportunities to Give Life

                                              Humbly consider others better than yourself.  Find one way you can put others before yourself.  

                                              More Ideas:

                                              • Before you start your weekend, spend time praying for 5 individuals by name.  Find out a unique way to honor them above yourselves by 1 act of kindness.
                                              • The world is full of people battling temptations.  Volunteer, give, or serve at a non-profit, meeting the needs of the community.  
                                              • Find a community need, and find a way that your family, your workplace, or you can step in and meet that need.  

                                                RIGHT NOW MEDIA

                                                GET BAPTIZED

                                                START GIVING

                                                WEEK 1

                                                CORE EXERCISES

                                                VERSE OF THE WEEK

                                                JAMES 1:2-4 Consider it joy whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, lacking nothing.”

                                                GOSPEL

                                                ➝  Reimagine Your Story

                                                What’s the biggest trial in your life right now? God is using this trial to grow you. Take 60 seconds today to imagine how God is maturing you.

                                                More Ideas:

                                                •      Reflect on who you were a year or two ago – who are you now?
                                                •      Which of these words best reflects the type of person God is growing you into? Love. Joy. Peace. Patience. Kindness. Goodness. Faithfulness. Gentleness. Self-Control.
                                                • Memorize James 1:2-4.  Read it every day this week.  Let it become your compass.

                                                PRAYER

                                                ➝  Invite God’s Good

                                                Consider your struggles.  Instead of fighting them, invite God to use them. Consider the struggles of others.  Ask God to encourage them as he helps them grow. 

                                                More Ideas:

                                                •      Journal about your struggles.  Don’t hold back. Go back later and jot some notes down how God might be making you “whole and complete”.
                                                •      Grab some sticky notes and write down some verses that remind you of God’s love for you.  Stick them around your house, car, or workspace.
                                                •      Create space to pray.  Have an open conversation with God.  Go for a walk while you pray, take a bath, grab a cup off coffee alone to have time with him. Whatever works best for you – meet God there.

                                                UNITY

                                                ➝  Journey With Others

                                                Have you seen spiritual growth in someone else who has gone through trials. Tell them so and find ways to be a source of affirmation.

                                                More Ideas:

                                                •      Shoot someone an encouraging text.  Thank them for their pursuit of Jesus and what you have seen in their life.
                                                •      Spend 1 meal with someone this week and pick their brains about how God has shaped them.  
                                                • Find a mentor who can help you process how to reframe your struggles.

                                                MISSION

                                                ➝  Identify Opportunities to Give Life

                                                Pay attention today.  Is there 1 person you know who is struggling who could use support or encouragement?  Lean in and be that for them.

                                                More Ideas:

                                                •      Secretly do something nice for someone else who is struggling.  Don’t tell anyone.
                                                •      Open up your schedule to invest in someone who has nothing to offer you. Find a way to add value to them anyway.
                                                • Go 24 hours without saying anything negative about anything.  Find the best in everything and celebrate that.

                                                RIGHT NOW MEDIA

                                                GET BAPTIZED

                                                START GIVING