Please enjoy this podcast. Although efforts were made in editing, this transcript may include a few typos. It’s difficult to catch some minor errors. Enjoy!
Saints, I need to share something that I’m seeing within our Christian nation, us, believers of Christ and it’s causing a divide. I’m talking about vaccinated vs nonvaccinated people. It’s discerning to hear how vaccinated believers are harassing those that are not. Remember everyone has a choice, even to accept Christ. We don’t down non-believers, well at least I hope not, therefore, don’t down or harass people who don’t believe the same as you. Respect their choice, pray for them (vaccinated or not) and move on. We didn’t go haywire over people taking the flu shot, so don’t stop being around a person just because they are not vaccinated. The vaccine is not a cure, nor does it stop you from getting the virus and does not save you from dying because we all will die. Let’s continue to love and serve each other, not rejecting, isolating, making fun of or harassing people, causing them to feel unwanted, awkward. That is not Christ-like.
2:21 – Hmm – I’ve got a few questions I want you to ponder.
When was the last time you cracked open your Bible?
When was the last time you read your Bible?
When was the last time your studied your Bible?
When was the last time you used scripture in your prayers?
Finally, have you fallen in love with God’s word?
Having a problem answering yes to just one? That’s OK, because the purpose of this episode is to get you to fall in love with God's word.
But now that means, you’ll need to gather your Bible, journal, pen, and locate a comfy place to take notes because this is going to be a “writing-kind” of an episode, unless you are driving or doing the laundry, then you’ll need to take some mental notes.
This is episode 33. Now, on to the intro, oh by the way I changed it a little because I wanted to make it more precise….
3:50 – Welcome to Hanging Out With Jesus Podcast. It’s purposefully designed for developing disciplines that help you cultivate, intentionally and daily, an awareness of the presence of God so you can discern the Holy Spirit’s movement.
Hi, I’m Lyvita Brooks, your host, author and blogger on a mission to equip the saints to do the work God’s called you to do and to build up the body of Christ until we all come into unity.
Saints, if this episode is a blessing to you then scroll down and write a review, rate it and subscribe, so others will know what a blessing it is to you, and don’t forget to invite others to join us. If you are new, consider joining our email community at lyvitabrooks.com to receive notifications of new releases.
Now, come walk with me, where we intentionally practice being in the presence of God. So stop what you are doing. “Cause it’s time to Hang Out With Jesus, and me, Lyvita. Let’s pray…
Let’s pray, Abba, Father, thank you for this moment of being in your presence. You made it clear in your word that You will never leave us or forsake us and it is so true because God the Holy Spirit is right here in us. Thank you for providing a constant reminder through the power of Holy Spirit of how much you love us. Help us to always give that same kind of love to those who do not see things the same as we or I. Father, help me speak in a way that edifies your children and provide tools that will help us be consistent in studying your word, as well as, setting up barriers to keep us on track. In Jesus Name, Amen
6:25 – Do you remember Psalm 119:105 – “Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path”?
Can you sing it with me?
8:06 – Saints, we have been talking about intercessory praying since April. Bringing family, friends, nation, wives and husbands, before God, even awakening to the truth that you and I are Intercessors, not just Grandma.
Well in those episodes we talked about the importance of memorizing god’s word and Holy Spirit.
I want you to just stop and think for a monent. When a baby says, “Da-Da, Ma-Ma,” for the first time how does that make the parent feel? Overjoyed! They record it and put on Instagram, Facebook TickTok. They want the world to know, “My baby said my name!” Can you imagine how God feels when you, for the first time after accepting Christ, say, “Abba, Father” or “Jesus”? The angels in heaven start shouting and so great a cloud of witnesses get to praising louder than ever. It’s like the cheers at a basketball game when their team wins.
What about when a parent hears their child repeat something to someone they’ve taught them? for example, “Girl always keep $5 in your prse cause you’ll never be broke.” Or, “Eat your broccoli. Don’t you want to grow up and be strong like your daddy.” Parents don’t that make you feel good. It’s like they got the message.
Now when you see them doing something you taught them. I can see my Ma smiling because of my performance in a school play that she took time in helping me prepare. That just blessed my heart and to look in her eyes after the performance bought joy to both our hearts. What about you? Any moments like that?
The thing, I think, that really hits home for a parent is hearing their child stand up for what they believe, because they taught them to sstand up on their own two feet.
Saints, can you just imagine how God feels when we speak His words to ourselves for encouragement? What about to others? Can you imagine the Hallejuah sounds when we say to the devil, “Get under my feet cause you don’t rule over here!”? Can you feel the warmth coming from inside you when you apply “Bless those that curse you” and then see the results of those prayers. Your heart is overjoyed but your God is dancing in heaven. I wander does God dance. That’s another study.
12:12 – Anyway, just imagine how speaking God’s word makes Him feel. Now, what about when you use it in prayer. WOW! And use it in praye to pray for another. WOW!
Now how important is reading God’s word to you, now? How much more important is studying it to you now? I want to share two articles I read...
12:47 – I read this article written on Biblical Illiteracy in 2016 by Dr. Albert Mohler. I was wondering can you name the four Gospels? How about all 12 disciples? What about the 10 commandments? It’s interesting when you think about it because Dr. Mohler states that the Barna Research Group stated 60% of Americans can’t name even 5 of the 10 Commandments, fewer than half adults can name 4 gospels, and many Christians can’t identify more than 2 or 3 disciples.
13:38 – In another article on Biblical Illiteracy, you’ll find links to both articles in the show notes, written by Gary Gilley in 2017, in which a study was conducted by LifeWay Research for Ligonier Ministries. They had concerns about unorthodox views of self-identifying evangelist over essential doctrines dealing with God, Jesus, The Holy Spirit, salvation and inspiration
14:12 – Here’s just 3 of their findings:
15:36 – Did you know that there are still believers who say and believe, “God helps those who help themselves.” That’s not a Bible verse, nor is it scriptural. So what you are saying is that if I wanted to help myself to some money out of my mother’s purse without asking, that God’s going to help me do so? Yeah, I know that’s mean, but that statement implies that God’s going to help me do what I want to do. And we all know that man has a problem…it’s sin.
16:16 – Just think these studies aren’t of all Americas but a select group of people that call themselves believers. Now if there is this much disparity, what about in our local churches? Our homes? Do you see where other world views and religions can seep in? Can you see why there is a need for studying your Bible and not just reading it?
16:54 – Can you see the importance, not just of you making sure that you study and read your Bible but also in encouraging other believers to do so? Our growth in Christ Jesus is not only about ourselves but also others. Others are watching, rather you try to hide or not.
17:20 – So the question being posed in this episode is, how can we develop disciplines to help us be consistent in reading and studying our Bibles? What can we do to fall in love with God’s word?
Two different questions but the same answer. Saints, it all begins with our thoughts. How do you view the Bible?
18:18 – It’s time to change our thoughts, our mindset about why we go to the Bible in the first place. Many times it’s to read, other times it’s to find a scripture to hold on to during a time of need, then there are times we want to learn about God or better understand our calling, but it’s mainly to ask for something or someone.
Have you ever thought of just looking at the Bible as “being in the presence of God”? You should have your Bible with you. Now only do this exercise if you can. Look at you Bible and think, “Every time I pick you up I’m going into the presence of God.” You say it. (pause) Try saying it a couple times and think about what you are saying.
19:11 – Did you know that your perception is half the battle. Our perception is how we view the world and everything around us. It has a direct effect on our thoughts, actions, and behavior. Including our view, understanding of the Bible.
Therefore if you think the Bible is hard to read, complicated, uninviting, takes up too much of your time, burdensome, or boring. Then it is. But if you stop nurturing that myth and realize the truth about who you are and whose you are, then that perception changes to a delight.
19:52 – God didn’t just leave His word hear with us. Nope He also sent His Spirit, the Holy Spirit, to lead and guide us into all truths and in the understanding of His word according to our ability to grasp it. Which really boils down to, how much of God do you want to control you. All or sections. If sections, then that’s where Holy Spirit will operate while trying to wooo you to let Him in those closed door areas. Now if it’s all. Wow! Then:
Therefore, the number one thing you can do to fall in love with God’s word and develop disciplines in your life to sustain you, is to change your perception of God’s word. Think of it as “going into the presence of God”.
21:42 – So how do we do that?
First, decide that this is something you want to do.
Second, stand in front of a mirror, or something that you can see your reflection, and say, “I am in the presence of God when I pick up my Bible.” I’ll give you a minute to repeat it as you look at your reflection in the mirror. Talking to yourself, also strengths. It builds you up. Gets, spirit, soul and body on the same page as Holy Spirit empowers those words throughout your being.
Third, time to visualize. Say, “I can’t wait to be in the presence of God, then visualize your Bible. (I’ll give you a minute)
Lastly, repeat these steps throughout the day. Do this for several weeks and you’ll find yourself picking up the Bible. Let’s be clear. Do this more than two times a day until your perception has changed.
23:22 – Now what should you do when you do open up that Bible? Remember it’s all about falling in love with God’s word and developing disciplines in your life to sustain you. The first one is changing your perception. The next one is changing your Bible translation.
23:48 – Now this is going to be hard for some people because they believe that their version is the version. Personally, I find that different translations help with my understanding of verses. I’ve studied from the Scofield KJV, Key Study Bible, NKJV, The Amplified Bible, Life Application Bible for students, The Interlinear Bible, NIV and ESV, which is my present Bible. All have been effective in my growth as a believer and in my understanding of God’s word for particular areas of my life. What I have found is that, changing translations when you become inconsistent with your studies, or just don’t wanna, seem to diminish because it’s like my brain has to learn something new so it’s intrigued and looks forward to it.
24:53 – Now I shared my 3 weeks of (get ready to sing it) “a ball of confusion, yeah, yeah”. So I purchased The Story Bible. It’s written in a novel form. It’s totally different than what I am use to reading at night, which might be following a reading app or reading a 365 Day Bible. This one I read a chapter a night. Talking about being in God’s presence. Some nights, I pass my bedtime, but the sleep is sweet. I’m not thinking about work, pressures of the day, or my to do list.
26:46 – Now the first thing to falling in love with God’s word and developing disciplines in your life to sustain you is changing your perception. Next is changing your Bible translation. And the last is making sure you have a daily quiet time, weekly bible study, and an accountability partner. These three things, when they are scheduled into your life and you do them, will build up a defense that will keep you coming back for more of God.
Have you ever felt like you were missing something or off track when you aren’t consistent with your daily quiet time or bible study? Is there anyone telling you that you just don’t seem like yourself because you are out of character? Do you sense that something not quit right but you can’t put your finger on it? How about, you start doing things that you know aren’t biblical, but you do it anyway?
27:58 – Saints, those are all signs that you have fallen away from your Bible and time to get back on it. Remember who you are. You are a child of God. You have the Holy Spirit in you and you are in Christ Jesus. Galatians 2:20, open your Bible to it as I read it, Galatians 2:20 “I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.” And what about, Matthew 5:6, turn there with me. I’m going to read from the Good News Bible, just to give you a taste of a different translation. Matthew 5:6, ““Happy are those whose greatest desire is to do what God requires; God will satisfy them fully!” It’s the same but give you a deeper meaning of let’s same the NKJV, NIV or ESV.
30:32 – So in summary, the 3 things to equip you in falling in love with God’s word and developing disciplines in your life to sustain you are:
30:58 – The next question is, how can those three things help you fall in love with God’s word? They can’t. But they can provide the space for you to do so.
When you become inconsistent with reading and studying God’s word or haven’t picked it up in years...once you say to yourself, “I’m doing it!” It’s like finally changing your schedule, your plans, to visit a love one you haven’t seen in years. Just because you miss being with them. Talking to them, Laughing with them and just sitting quietly in their arms while they kiss your forehead. I always enjoyed doing that to my step daughter and grandbaby. It was like giving them a good night blessing while a the same time saying, “I love you.” That was special.
32:00 – God wants that too. That’s why He left His word, the Bible, Holy Scriptures. So you can come and hang out with Him while feasing on His words. He misses those times and so do you. So my brothers and sisters-in-Christ, set the times. Schedule the time, to be with the one who is always delighted, regardless of what you do or say, to have you in His presence. God’s waiting...
33:00 – Lord, I pray that you continually guide us into all truths and ignite a desire of delight when we embrace your word. In Jesus name I pray, Amen.
33:16 – Don’t forget to share this episode or the podcast with others. Also write a review or rate it and subscribe to lyvitabrooks.com for new releases, future events and the blog which has Monthly Opportunities for Growth. Such as challenges and books to read. So until we meet again over the airwaves, intentionally and daily, hang out with Jesus.
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