A faith that works: a faith that anchors me in storms.
What do you think about when a storm comes into your life? When things are dreadful, how do you wrestle through what’s happening to you? Where does your mind go? No one likes turbulent times, but until we reach heaven, they will be a part of our life.
Something To Talk About:
You’re going to go through many different kinds of storms in your life — financial, health, and relational. All of these storms can create instability and confusion. Here are three ways you can anchor your life to the rock of God’s Word during any storm:
- Treat God’s Word as a perfect gift: Storms are inevitable, but fortunately, our anchor is immovable. The anchor in the life of the believer is the Word of God. What is it about the Bible that can anchor me in times of great storms? This is God’s written record of His unveiling of Himself. This is who God is. This is how He works. Do you want to know how God works? Start in the Old Testament and see how He worked. Do you want to see how God works? Get in the New Testament and see how He worked. What did He say? How did He respond? How did He change things? How did He work in the lives of people? Suppose you don’t understand who He is. In that case, the anchor doesn’t work because we’re talking about a God who loves us enough to reveal Himself to us in a written record so that you and I would know who it is we are worshipping, how to worship Him, how to walk in obedience to Him, and how to stand firm in the midst of blowing winds of storms that come upon us in life. That’s what the Word of God is. You need to treat God’s Word as a gift.
- Humbly accept whatever God says: While reading the first chapter of James, the phrase “humbly accept the word God has planted in your hearts, for it has the power to save your souls” (vs. 21) kinda jumps out at you. It makes things a little simpler. When faced with trials or adverse circumstances, you don’t need to read another book, attend another seminar, or ask another friend about this. You need to humbly accept the Word God has planted in your hearts and do what the Bible tells you to do. Stop briefly and consider how often you are exposed to God’s Word. Every time you open up the Bible, God speaks. Whenever you go to a small group and discuss a passage of Scripture, He is speaking. When you quote verses you have memorized in your head, He is talking. The Bible tells you who God is, how we are to live, what people are like, and what to expect in the future. God’s Word is meant to be more than informational; it is intended to be transformational. That means before you even open your Bible, you tell God you accept whatever He tells you. You agree to believe His Word, whether or not you understand it.
- Study it and do what He says: So why should you study the Bible? The Bible remains the only source of divine revelation and power to sustain you as a Christian in your walk with God. The Bible provides us with the incredible privilege of knowing God personally through His Word. Only the Bible answers those questions directly from the God who created us. The Bible is God’s inspired words to us. No self-help book can come close to the words of our Creator. Studying God’s Word may be challenging but doable and eminently worthwhile. God did not give us His Word to confuse us but to enlighten us. He revealed the contents of the Bible so that we could understand. But understanding requires study. If we are unwilling to put in the effort and the work, then it is easy to miss out on the rich, life-changing knowledge we gain by studying the Bible. But then do what God says in His word. Fix our eyes on Jesus. Run hard and fast, courageously, toward what He asks us to do. Let’s trust that God knows what He’s doing and choose to embrace it by faith.
- Why is the Bible essential to our faith?
- Do you have a hard time believing the Bible is for your benefit? What can you do to deepen your understanding of how the story of God’s Word applies to your life?
- In what ways are you treating God’s Word as a gift? What priority does it have in your life?
- What does it mean to accept God’s Word humbly? Why does humility matter?
- What does God want you to do with the parts of the Bible you don’t understand?
- Read Psalm 119:103, 105, 114, and 160: What do these verses say to you about studying the Bible?
- What can we do this week to improve reading and studying the Bible?
- Believers who hear the Word of God week after week but fail to put into practice what they have learned are like the person who studied all this and failed to use their knowledge and learning profitably. Agree or disagree and why?
- Read James 1:21-25. James will emphasize that the believer needs to be more than just a hearer of the Word of God. How can we be a doer of the Word as well?
- How is God’s Word connected to our spiritual growth?
- What will you change this week as a result of this message?
Take One Thing Home with You:
Be a doer.
Being doers can mean traveling across the globe to extend compassion and the love of Jesus or traveling to your backyard to the neighbor battling cancer. It’s not about the distance; it’s about the message. Location isn’t relative; the issue at hand is that we are demonstrating compassion and spreading the Gospel. We’re called to share Christ’s love, and we’re called to glorify Him (Matthew 28:19). We’re called to care. We’re called to protect, defend, and care for the defenseless, the poor, and the abandoned. It doesn’t matter where.
The Word of God commands us to take action, but many people seem to be waiting for some great spiritual experience to jumpstart them doing what the Bible tells them to do. Being a doer is taking the Word of God and allowing it to impact our lives so it changes us. It changes the way we speak, think, and live. It changes the way we treat our spouse. It changes the way we act in business. It changes everything about us.