Want to get daily readings and a Bible study sent directly to your email like ?
 

Facebook

July 2016
M T W T F S S
« Jun    
 123
45678910
11121314151617
18192021222324
25262728293031

Categories

Copyright Info

Scripture text is for personal use only; copying, printing, or selling is prohibited. Click here for full copyright information.

Bible Study

LIO 5/4 – Vital Behaviors

Click here to download a printable version of the Daily Bible Study for the week.

WEDNESDAY— Vital Behaviors
Big Point: We must be a SAFE place for everyone.

Being outside in a quiet spot and enjoying God’s creation always seems to be a place to find peace and rest from the world around us. Sometimes there are specific locations and views that are special to each of us where we can feel free from the pressures, distractions, and busy schedules. But, often times we need someone to hear our thoughts. Someone who will listen when all we want are ears to hear, or someone who will understand us. Someone who will be accepting and offer feedback and fill us with truth. Someone who will believe in us when we aren’t feeling confident in ourselves.

Similar to the way a peaceful spot outside can create an environment of safety, we also need to form a safe “place” for others. Being trustworthy, honest, dependable, loyal, a good listener, supportive, self-confident, and fun to be around are characteristics of creating safety and establishing lasting friendships. In Proverbs 17:17, it is said that “a friend loves at all times.” All times—during the valleys, during the mountain tops, and through the entire journey of life, we can be a place of safety for one another. Proverbs 27:17 explains godly friendships as iron sharpening iron. Likewise, friends become sharper in godly character and wisdom through one another’s vulnerability, support, and encouragement.

In today’s passage we can see what it looks like when we act out the teachings of those proverbs—when we are a safe place for the people around us. Jesus teaches us how we ought to deal with people we know who are struggling—how we can be their iron.

 

READ IT… What does the Bible say?
Luke 13:6-9
6Then Jesus told this story: “A man planted a fig tree in his garden and came again and again to see if there was any fruit on it, but he was always disappointed. 7Finally, he said to his gardener, ‘I’ve waited three years, and there hasn’t been a single fig! Cut it down. It’s just taking up space in the garden.’ 8“The gardener answered, ‘Sir, give it one more chance. Leave it another year, and I’ll give it special attention and plenty of fertilizer. 9If we get figs next year, fine. If not, then you can cut it down.’”

Question: What does the gardener advise the man to do with the fig tree?

Answer:

 

BELIEVE IT… What is the lesson for me?
Think about a friendship you have had for years. What keeps that relationship strong?

 

LIVE IT… What will I do now?
What can you do to create more of a safe place for others?

Are there any friends that you can reach out to and offer more support and encouragement?

 

PRAY IT…
Thank God for the safety he gives us through his creation and in his presence. If you are in need of a safe person to talk to, ask God for the opportunities to reveal trustworthy people in your life.

 

More Living It Out


Dig Deeper with this week’s teaching pastor:

Click here to go deeper using the Life Group DVD by the teaching pastor or view the message, including bonus discussion questions.


Weekend Message Discussion Questions: Catching a meal after the service? Meeting with friends this week? Discuss the weekend message together:

  1. Talk about one of the more difficult lessons you’ve had to learn in your life.
  2. The big idea for the Comeback series has been, “The turning point in every comeback is the courage to get back up.” This weekend Ben said that, “Our courage increases the more we learn about Jesus.” How have you seen these two principles work together in your life?
  3. One of the key points from this weekend is that we need to “shake the dust” in different areas of our lives. What does this phrase mean for you right now?
  4. In Matthew 16:16, NLT, Jesus said, “I will build my church, and the powers of hell will not conquer it.” How does knowing that nothing can stop Jesus from building His church make you feel?
  5. Read Ephesians 4:21-24. What is one step you can take towards “Putting on your new nature…” every day?

Bible Reading Plan

Thank you for reading today’s LivingItOut! We encourage you to take it one step further by participating in a Daily Bible Reading plan. There are thousands of individual reading plans available and there is ONE that is just right for you! CLICK HERE to download a basic “Bible in a year” plan. Customizable reading plans available at Youversion.com or Biblegateway.com.


The Comeback—Memory Verse:

23Instead, let the Spirit renew your thoughts and attitudes. 24Put on your new nature, created to be like God—truly righteous and holy.
Ephesians 4:23-24 (NLT)


Like to Write?

We are always looking for volunteers to join the LivingItOut writing team. If you enjoy writing or proofing and want to try your hand at the LivingItOut, email Andy Rectenwald at AndyR@cedarcreek.tv


 

LIO 5/3 – The Path to a Comeback

Click here to download a printable version of the Daily Bible Study for the week.

TUESDAY– The Path to a Comeback
Big Point: The path to a comeback is life long.

Did you wake up this morning feeling happy thinking about your day, or did you wake up facing things that are painful such as a death in the family, chronic illness or a broken relationship? Sometimes life can feel more like a nightmare and we don’t know how to fix our brokenness. We know that others have experienced more success and we like to hear their stories. Comeback stories make us feel like anything is possible and inspire us to strive for more in our own lives. It feels so good and so right when someone who has been down on their luck or suffering through a season of hardship works to find a way out of misery into a happier life. In movies like “Rocky,” “Cinderella Man” or “Rudy,” our hearts almost burst when each person is finally successful and fulfills their dream.

Each one of us will go through some form of suffering during our lives, and maybe we feel more like Bill Murray in “Groundhog Day” than Rocky Balboa because we don’t have overnight success. In every comeback story there is something that happens, and that is the simple fact that the person down on his or her luck gets back up one more time to make one more attempt to turn their life around for the better. They press on one more time, and work hard to accomplish a goal they set for success. It always takes hard work over a period of time. A comeback is a continuous process for the rest of our lives. It takes some work in replacing old behaviors, and in having perseverance. You can find some great comeback stories in the Bible in the books of Job, Ruth or Esther, where God blesses each one of these people who suffered through a season of hardship. According to Job 42, verse 10, “After Job had prayed for his friends, the Lord restored his fortunes and gave him twice as much as he had before.”

The author of Hebrews encourages the people to run their race (their life) with endurance and perseverance. The encouragement from this passage still applies to us today.

 

READ IT… What does the Bible say?
Hebrews 12:1 (New International Version)
Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us…

Question: How can you practice perseverance in your life?

Answer:

 

BELIEVE IT… What is the lesson for me?
Part of the path to a comeback is to replace old behaviors (throw off everything that hinders). What behaviors in your life do you need to replace?

 

LIVE IT… What will I do now?
Knowing that the path to a comeback is lifelong can be somewhat intimidating. Who can you lean on to guide you through this process?

 

PRAY IT…
God, give me the strength and courage to practice healthy behaviors every day for my lifelong comeback.

 

More Living It Out


Dig Deeper with this week’s teaching pastor:

Click here to go deeper using the Life Group DVD by the teaching pastor or view the message, including bonus discussion questions.


Weekend Message Discussion Questions: Catching a meal after the service? Meeting with friends this week? Discuss the weekend message together:

  1. Talk about one of the more difficult lessons you’ve had to learn in your life.
  2. The big idea for the Comeback series has been, “The turning point in every comeback is the courage to get back up.” This weekend Ben said that, “Our courage increases the more we learn about Jesus.” How have you seen these two principles work together in your life?
  3. One of the key points from this weekend is that we need to “shake the dust” in different areas of our lives. What does this phrase mean for you right now?
  4. In Matthew 16:16, NLT, Jesus said, “I will build my church, and the powers of hell will not conquer it.” How does knowing that nothing can stop Jesus from building His church make you feel?
  5. Read Ephesians 4:21-24. What is one step you can take towards “Putting on your new nature…” every day?

Bible Reading Plan

Thank you for reading today’s LivingItOut! We encourage you to take it one step further by participating in a Daily Bible Reading plan. There are thousands of individual reading plans available and there is ONE that is just right for you! CLICK HERE to download a basic “Bible in a year” plan. Customizable reading plans available at Youversion.com or Biblegateway.com.


The Comeback—Memory Verse:

23Instead, let the Spirit renew your thoughts and attitudes. 24Put on your new nature, created to be like God—truly righteous and holy.
Ephesians 4:23-24 (NLT)


Like to Write?

We are always looking for volunteers to join the LivingItOut writing team. If you enjoy writing or proofing and want to try your hand at the LivingItOut, email Andy Rectenwald at AndyR@cedarcreek.tv


 

LIO 5/2 – Shake the Dust

Click here to download a printable version of the Daily Bible Study for the week.


MONDAY-Shake the Dust
Big Point: The turning point for every comeback is finding the courage to get back up.

“The turning point of every comeback is finding the courage to get back up.” The “Comeback” series has been a great experience where we’ve learned together how God wants us live. In this week’s LivingItOut, we want to reflect on what we have learned over the past five weeks, and also what God might want for us in the future. Before we do that, let’s take a look at what Ben talked about this weekend.

Ben wrapped up the series by talking about how we all need to “shake the dust.” So many times in our lives we get knocked down by our circumstances, by others or by ourselves; and instead of getting back up, we stay down – we don’t shake the dust (of our setbacks) off. Part of this problem is that we forget that after we start to follow Jesus, we become a brand new person. We are no longer defined by our mistakes, our setbacks or our failures. Instead, we are defined by the perfect love of Jesus. In Ephesians 4, the Apostle Paul encourages the Ephesians to no longer live as they used to – as people who aren’t saved by Jesus – instead, he calls them to put on their new nature, one created by God. In the verses below, Paul tells us what God’s role is, and what our role is in this process. God (the Spirit) renews our thoughts and attitudes, and we put on our new nature each day. Every day we are called by God to live as if we are saved by Jesus, because we are! If we allow God the space to renew our thoughts and attitudes, and we remind ourselves each day of our place in God’s eyes, we can make a comeback.

 

READ IT… What does the Bible say?
Ephesians 4:23-24
23Instead, let the Spirit renew your thoughts and attitudes. 24Put on your new nature, created to be like God—truly righteous and holy.

Question: In the above verses, what is our role and what is God’s?

Answer:

 

BELIEVE IT… What is the lesson for me?
Why is it difficult to allow God to change your thoughts and attitudes?

 

LIVE IT… What will I do now?
We need to remind ourselves daily of our role in God’s plan. Every morning we need to put on our new nature. There are several ways to try to practice this (a morning prayer, a morning devotional, a simple note, etc.) What can you start to do to remind yourself to put on your new nature and to allow God the space to change the way you think?

 

PRAY IT…
Thank God for creating you, for saving you and for making you new. Ask him to help you change your thoughts and attitudes, and to help you “put on your new nature” each morning.

 

More Living It Out


Dig Deeper with this week’s teaching pastor:

Click here to go deeper using the Life Group DVD by the teaching pastor or view the message, including bonus discussion questions.


Weekend Message Discussion Questions: Catching a meal after the service? Meeting with friends this week? Discuss the weekend message together:

  1. Talk about one of the more difficult lessons you’ve had to learn in your life.
  2. The big idea for the Comeback series has been, “The turning point in every comeback is the courage to get back up.” This weekend Ben said that, “Our courage increases the more we learn about Jesus.” How have you seen these two principles work together in your life?
  3. One of the key points from this weekend is that we need to “shake the dust” in different areas of our lives. What does this phrase mean for you right now?
  4. In Matthew 16:16, NLT, Jesus said, “I will build my church, and the powers of hell will not conquer it.” How does knowing that nothing can stop Jesus from building His church make you feel?
  5. Read Ephesians 4:21-24. What is one step you can take towards “Putting on your new nature…” every day?

Bible Reading Plan

Thank you for reading today’s LivingItOut! We encourage you to take it one step further by participating in a Daily Bible Reading plan. There are thousands of individual reading plans available and there is ONE that is just right for you! CLICK HERE to download a basic “Bible in a year” plan. Customizable reading plans available at Youversion.com or Biblegateway.com.


The Comeback—Memory Verse:

23Instead, let the Spirit renew your thoughts and attitudes. 24Put on your new nature, created to be like God—truly righteous and holy.
Ephesians 4:23-24 (NLT)


Like to Write?

We are always looking for volunteers to join the LivingItOut writing team. If you enjoy writing or proofing and want to try your hand at the LivingItOut, email Andy Rectenwald at AndyR@cedarcreek.tv


 

LIO week of 5/2: Series – The Comeback: Victorious Identity

Click here to download a printable version of the Daily Bible Study for the week.

LIO 4/29 – Vital Mindset 4

Click here to download a printable version of the Daily Bible Study for the week.

FRIDAY—Vital Mindset 4
Big Point: Honesty and repentance are the keys to real change.

Why would anyone ever consider losing weight? Because they think they are overweight! The first step in the weight loss process is accepting and admitting that you have extra pounds to shed. Honest acknowledgement of a problem is the first step in any form of personal improvement or change. One purpose of God’s Word is to transform us, to change us. But we first have to admit we have reason to change. Ben recently spoke about vital behaviors which began with stopping and analyzing ourselves. Brutally honest, objective self-examination.

The next step in Godly transformation is repentance. While the word repent literally means to turn, as in changing direction from the one in which you are currently headed, it also denotes a feeling of sorrow for your past actions. You recognize that the way you are living is not in line with God’s plan. But you don’t just sit there and feel sorry about it. You turn from that way of living and alter the way you will live in the future.

So what does God do when we realize the error of our ways and turn away from our old way of life? Does he riddle us with guilt for the rest of our lives? In the Parable of the Prodigal Son, when the son returns to his father after having recklessly squandered his inheritance on a self-destructive lifestyle, how does his father respond? He runs to his son and wraps him up in a huge hug and showers him with love and even more riches. That’s a picture of how God responds when we come back to him. Is there something in your life you need to examine and turn from? God is waiting to love you back into the family. In Lamentations, the author challenges the people of Israel to examine their flaws and turn them over to God. We need to do this as well—be honest and repent.

 

READ IT… What does the Bible say?
Lamentations 3:40-41 (English Standard Version)
40Let us test and examine our ways, and return to the Lord! 41Let us lift up our hearts and hands to God in heaven.

Question: What three things does this passage of scripture say we are to do before we lift our hearts and hands to God? Write each one of those words down and explain what each word means in context to our relationship with God.

Answer:

 

BELIEVE IT… What is the lesson for me?
Is there anything in your life that you need to examine and turn from?

 

LIVE IT… What will I do now?
If you have honestly assessed your life and found something you need to turn from, what do you need to do so you can move away from that behavior and return to God?

 

PRAY IT…
Thank God for providing a way to transform us from our sinful selves to new creatures, holy creatures. He wants to make us better versions of ourselves. Then admit to him that you cannot do this on your own and ask him to help you become more like his Son. Finally, close your eyes and envision resting your head against God’s chest as he embraces you with a loving, Fatherly hug. Welcome home.

 

More Living It Out


Dig Deeper with this week’s teaching pastor:

Click here to go deeper using the Life Group DVD by the teaching pastor or view the message, including bonus discussion questions.


Weekend Message Discussion Questions: Catching a meal after the service? Meeting with friends this week? Discuss the weekend message together:

  1. Would you consider yourself a person that makes emotional decisions or someone that removes the emotions from decisions when they need to be made? Share an example.
  2. The first Vital Mindset we need to have is this: Even though God knows everything about you, he still doesn’t change his mind about you. Do you believe that? How does having the certainty that God will love you no matter what affect your relationship with him?
  3. Since God doesn’t change his mind about you, you can know that your salvation is secure. How should this affect the way you live your life? How should it affect the way you interact with others? Explain.
  4. Read Isaiah 40:31. Why is waiting on God so difficult for us sometimes? What can you do to be more patient?
  5. Why is it important to be honest about your sins and to turn to Jesus? What do you think this process looks like?

Bible Reading Plan

Thank you for reading today’s LivingItOut! We encourage you to take it one step further by participating in a Daily Bible Reading plan. There are thousands of individual reading plans available and there is ONE that is just right for you! CLICK HERE to download a basic “Bible in a year” plan. Customizable reading plans available at Youversion.com or Biblegateway.com.


The Comeback—Memory Verse:

23Instead, let the Spirit renew your thoughts and attitudes. 24Put on your new nature, created to be like God—truly righteous and holy.
Ephesians 4:23-24 (NLT)


Like to Write?

We are always looking for volunteers to join the LivingItOut writing team. If you enjoy writing or proofing and want to try your hand at the LivingItOut, email Andy Rectenwald at AndyR@cedarcreek.tv


Want to Dig Deeper?

Check out CedarCreek Radio, a weekly podcast dedicated to helping you connect with God, go deeper into the Bible, and get to know some of the CedarCreek ministries and staff.


Weekend Updates!

  • Short Term Groups: Groups starting in May! Designed for those who want to connect with others, learn and grow in their faith, but struggle finding the time to do it. Spend four weeks learning about a single topic and connecting with others. For details about group topics, locations, dates and times, stop by the table in the lobby or go online to CedarCreek.tv/shortterm.
  • Internship: The CedarCreek internship program is for energetic & self-motivated leaders ages 19-30, who are ready to roll up their sleeves and spend a year gaining world class leadership experience serving in a fast-paced environment right here at CedarCreek. Take the next step and apply by May 1st at NextLeader.tv.
  • The Drive: Clean out your closets, empty your pantries and clear off the grocery store shelves! Every item donated helps one of our four free kitchens in the area! Collection runs through May 8th. Lists are available by clicking here. Thank you for helping us feed thousands every month!
  • Child Dedications: May 7 and 8 during all services at all campuses. This is a time for families to commit to raising their child in a Christ-centered home. If you have a baby or young child you would like to dedicate, attend one of the classes during the 5:15p or 10:45a services on April 30/May 1. Stop by the CedarVille Check-In area or email CedarVille@CedarCreek.tv for more information.

Resources Used This Week:

The Pleasures of God: Meditations on God’s Delight in Being God by John Piper

Biblehub.com

Biblegateway.org

All Scripture verses are English Standard Version unless otherwise noted.


The mission of the CedarCreek LivingItOut Bible study is to provide a complementary Monday-Friday study that digs deeper into Scripture and the weekend message topic so we can live out our faith daily in Jesus Christ.

Each week the LivingItOut (LIO) is put together by a team of writers and proofers. Thank you to this week’s team! Interested in serving? Questions or comments about this week’s study? Email MarnaW@CedarCreek.tv

 

LIO 4/28 – Vital Mindset 3

Click here to download a printable version of the Daily Bible Study for the week.

THURSDAY– Vital Mindset 3
Big Point: We have to wait for God’s timing.

In this day and age, we can probably all admit to being guilty of wanting something immediately, and not wanting to wait for it. As humans, we have an instinct to satisfy our needs as soon as we become aware of them. Our culture seems to encourage this behavior of “instant gratification” as we have become accustomed to fast food drive thrus, instant weight loss systems, and the “buy now, pay later” credit card industry. Instant gratification is found even in the way we communicate with people. Instead of writing letters to friends in other cities, sending it via snail mail and anxiously awaiting a reply, we are able to text them and receive a reply almost instantaneously. We can get what we want, right now!

Waiting and being patient may seem like an inconvenience, but God actually tells us in the Bible that there are times that he wants us to wait. We need to try to be patient and embrace the timing of God when our emotions are pulling us the other way and calling us to be impatient. Picture this: You are going through a hard time in your life. You are praying to God to fix the situation, to heal the brokenness in your life. Days turn into weeks and you become restless as the situation has not improved. Hold on, friend! God promises that though trouble may last for the night (or nights, or weeks, etc.) – joy comes in the morning (Psalm 30). He has a plan for our lives, and in order to experience the joy coming our way, we need to be patient and wait on him instead of expecting an instant result. His promises are always worth the wait.

During the time of Isaiah 40, Israel was in Babylonian captivity. Conditions were terrible for the Israelites, yet Isaiah calls the people to be patient, because God promised to renew their strength. This applies to us today. When we are patient on God he can give us the strength to carry on.

 

READ IT… What does the Bible say?
Isaiah 40:31 (English Standard Version)
But they who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings of eagles; they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint.

Question: What will happen to those who wait for the Lord?

Answer:

 

BELIEVE IT… What is the lesson for me?
Isaiah 40:31 encourages us that God will support and carry us through if we wait on him. Do you trust his timing and plan in your life?

 

LIVE IT… What will I do now?
What is one step that you can take today to move towards trusting God and his timing?

 

PRAY IT…
Thank God for how beautiful his plan is for your life in every season. If you are in a season of waiting, ask him to grant you strength and continued trust in him.

 

More Living It Out


Dig Deeper with this week’s teaching pastor:

Click here to go deeper using the Life Group DVD by the teaching pastor or view the message, including bonus discussion questions.


Weekend Message Discussion Questions: Catching a meal after the service? Meeting with friends this week? Discuss the weekend message together:

  1. Would you consider yourself a person that makes emotional decisions or someone that removes the emotions from decisions when they need to be made? Share an example.
  2. The first Vital Mindset we need to have is this: Even though God knows everything about you, he still doesn’t change his mind about you. Do you believe that? How does having the certainty that God will love you no matter what affect your relationship with him?
  3. Since God doesn’t change his mind about you, you can know that your salvation is secure. How should this affect the way you live your life? How should it affect the way you interact with others? Explain.
  4. Read Isaiah 40:31. Why is waiting on God so difficult for us sometimes? What can you do to be more patient?
  5. Why is it important to be honest about your sins and to turn to Jesus? What do you think this process looks like?

Bible Reading Plan

Thank you for reading today’s LivingItOut! We encourage you to take it one step further by participating in a Daily Bible Reading plan. There are thousands of individual reading plans available and there is ONE that is just right for you! CLICK HERE to download a basic “Bible in a year” plan. Customizable reading plans available at Youversion.com or Biblegateway.com.


The Comeback—Memory Verse:

23Instead, let the Spirit renew your thoughts and attitudes. 24Put on your new nature, created to be like God—truly righteous and holy.
Ephesians 4:23-24 (NLT)


Like to Write?

We are always looking for volunteers to join the LivingItOut writing team. If you enjoy writing or proofing and want to try your hand at the LivingItOut, email Andy Rectenwald at AndyR@cedarcreek.tv


Want to Dig Deeper?

Check out CedarCreek Radio, a weekly podcast dedicated to helping you connect with God, go deeper into the Bible, and get to know some of the CedarCreek ministries and staff.

 

LIO 4/27 – Vital Mindset 2

Click here to download a printable version of the Daily Bible Study for the week.

WEDNESDAY—Vital Mindset 2
Big Point: Your relationship with Jesus is secure.

Ask any parent what they want most for their children and you will likely hear some version of the following: “I want my child to be healthy and happy, to be honest and polite, and to be a good friend to others.” Consequently, early in life, most of us are taught lessons that support this intended outcome. Tell the truth. Respect your elders. Do unto others as you would have them do unto you; and so on. These lessons are constructive because they motivate us to act in a Godly manner by teaching us that there are both consequences and rewards for our actions in this life.

Inevitably, however, we all fall short of these lofty ideals. We make poor decisions, we tell untruths, we have impure thoughts, and we think, say, and do things that we later regret. In short, we are human. As a result, it is only natural for believers of Christ to be concerned about how God will judge us for our thoughts and actions.

Yesterday, we talked about how God does not change his mind about us, despite the fact that he is deeply familiar with all of our behaviors – both good and bad. Just as we learned that God will never forsake us, so too can we take comfort in knowing that our salvation in Jesus is similarly secure. It is secure not because of our good deeds or thoughts, but because God gave his only Son to pay for our sins on the cross.

As Ben Snyder recently said, “It’s okay to not be okay; but it’s not okay to stay that way.” Fortunately for us all, we can take solace in knowing that when we’re not okay God isn’t going to keep us there. Failing to remember this truth can result in a tortured existence for some during our walk here on Earth. Simply put, remembering that our relationship with Jesus is eternally secure can be the difference between a life of worry and fear, and one of flourishing and freedom. In Lamentations, the author tells us to be patient with God because our salvation is secure in Him.

 

READ IT… What does the Bible say?
Lamentations 3:25-26 (English Standard Version)
25The Lord is good to those who wait for him to the soul who seeks him. 26It is good that one should wait quietly for the salvation of the Lord.

Question: What does it mean to wait “quietly” for the Lord’s salvation?

Answer:

 

BELIEVE IT… What is the lesson for me?
Do you wrestle with guilt, worry and fear as a result of your thoughts and actions? If so, how can you appreciate the liberating nature of God’s unconditional love for you?

 

LIVE IT… What will I do now?
What are some immediate steps you can take to transition from worry and fear to flourishing and freedom?

 

PRAY IT…
God, I thank you for your boundless grace and mercy. Help me to remember that your love is unconditional and that my relationship with Jesus is secure not because of my deeds, but solely because of his sacrifice for my sins. Amen.

 

More Living It Out


Dig Deeper with this week’s teaching pastor:

Click here to go deeper using the Life Group DVD by the teaching pastor or view the message, including bonus discussion questions.


Weekend Message Discussion Questions: Catching a meal after the service? Meeting with friends this week? Discuss the weekend message together:

  1. Would you consider yourself a person that makes emotional decisions or someone that removes the emotions from decisions when they need to be made? Share an example.
  2. The first Vital Mindset we need to have is this: Even though God knows everything about you, he still doesn’t change his mind about you. Do you believe that? How does having the certainty that God will love you no matter what affect your relationship with him?
  3. Since God doesn’t change his mind about you, you can know that your salvation is secure. How should this affect the way you live your life? How should it affect the way you interact with others? Explain.
  4. Read Isaiah 40:31. Why is waiting on God so difficult for us sometimes? What can you do to be more patient?
  5. Why is it important to be honest about your sins and to turn to Jesus? What do you think this process looks like?

Bible Reading Plan

Thank you for reading today’s LivingItOut! We encourage you to take it one step further by participating in a Daily Bible Reading plan. There are thousands of individual reading plans available and there is ONE that is just right for you! CLICK HERE to download a basic “Bible in a year” plan. Customizable reading plans available at Youversion.com or Biblegateway.com.


The Comeback—Memory Verse:

23Instead, let the Spirit renew your thoughts and attitudes. 24Put on your new nature, created to be like God—truly righteous and holy.
Ephesians 4:23-24 (NLT)


Like to Write?

We are always looking for volunteers to join the LivingItOut writing team. If you enjoy writing or proofing and want to try your hand at the LivingItOut, email Andy Rectenwald at AndyR@cedarcreek.tv


Want to Dig Deeper?

Check out CedarCreek Radio, a weekly podcast dedicated to helping you connect with God, go deeper into the Bible, and get to know some of the CedarCreek ministries and staff.

 

LIO 4/26 – Vital Mindset 1

Click here to download a printable version of the Daily Bible Study for the week.

TUESDAY– Vital Mindset 1
Big Point: God does not change His mind about you.

According to various sources, the average adult makes 35,000 choices per day. Often these choices are insignificant, but tucked in among the “What should I eat today?” decisions are more life altering decisions like “Should I stay at this job or look elsewhere?” Many times we make a choice only to regret that decision minutes or years later. How many times have you ordered chocolate ice cream and then realized that cookies and cream would have really hit the spot?

As people, we seem hard-wired to make a choice and then want a do-over. Once a commitment is made, it seems like there is something better that we probably missed. We live in a state of dissatisfaction because we fear that there is always something better that we could have chosen. These feelings are often taken into our perceptions and relationship with God. We think that since we change our minds about things all the time, God must do the same thing when he thinks about us. That, however, is not the case. God can see into our deepest places and loves us the same. He can see those areas of our lives hidden from the world and he does not stop loving us. Until we allow this truth to penetrate our hearts and minds, we will be constantly trying to earn God’s approval. We will be working to convince him that we’re really not that bad, and that we deserve his love. This causes frustration on our part because we realize that we really don’t deserve His love – we never will measure up.

David wrote many of the Psalms. Throughout his songs and prayers to God, he explores what it means to be loved by a God who knows all about us but still loves us in spite of ourselves. In Psalm 139, David acknowledges that God knows everything about him and in Hebrews 13, the author tells us that God doesn’t change. These two passages show us that no matter our situation, God loves us.

 

READ IT… What does the Bible say?
Psalm 139:1-2 (English Standard Version)
1O Lord, you have searched me and known me! 2You know when I sit down and when I rise up; you discern my thoughts from afar.

Hebrews 13:8 (English Standard Version)
Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.

Question: In this world that is ever changing, who is the one who really knows us? Who never changes?

Answer:

 

BELIEVE IT… What is the lesson for me?
How do you feel about God knowing everything about you? Is that a freeing thought that you don’t need to hide anything from him or does it bring you shame?

 

LIVE IT… What will I do now?
Are you afraid that God’s love for you will change depending on how good or bad you are on a given day? How would your life change if you internalized the belief that God does not change his mind about you?

 

PRAY IT…
Thank God that his love for you is constant and never changing. Thank him for fully and completely knowing you and loving you in spite of yourself. Allow yourself to live in the freedom that you are fully known and still loved.

 

More Living It Out


Dig Deeper with this week’s teaching pastor:

Click here to go deeper using the Life Group DVD by the teaching pastor or view the message, including bonus discussion questions.


Weekend Message Discussion Questions: Catching a meal after the service? Meeting with friends this week? Discuss the weekend message together:

  1. Would you consider yourself a person that makes emotional decisions or someone that removes the emotions from decisions when they need to be made? Share an example.
  2. The first Vital Mindset we need to have is this: Even though God knows everything about you, he still doesn’t change his mind about you. Do you believe that? How does having the certainty that God will love you no matter what affect your relationship with him?
  3. Since God doesn’t change his mind about you, you can know that your salvation is secure. How should this affect the way you live your life? How should it affect the way you interact with others? Explain.
  4. Read Isaiah 40:31. Why is waiting on God so difficult for us sometimes? What can you do to be more patient?
  5. Why is it important to be honest about your sins and to turn to Jesus? What do you think this process looks like?

Bible Reading Plan

Thank you for reading today’s LivingItOut! We encourage you to take it one step further by participating in a Daily Bible Reading plan. There are thousands of individual reading plans available and there is ONE that is just right for you! CLICK HERE to download a basic “Bible in a year” plan. Customizable reading plans available at Youversion.com or Biblegateway.com.


The Comeback—Memory Verse:

23Instead, let the Spirit renew your thoughts and attitudes. 24Put on your new nature, created to be like God—truly righteous and holy.
Ephesians 4:23-24 (NLT)


Like to Write?

We are always looking for volunteers to join the LivingItOut writing team. If you enjoy writing or proofing and want to try your hand at the LivingItOut, email Andy Rectenwald at AndyR@cedarcreek.tv


Want to Dig Deeper?

Check out CedarCreek Radio, a weekly podcast dedicated to helping you connect with God, go deeper into the Bible, and get to know some of the CedarCreek ministries and staff.

 

LIO 4/25 – Vital Mindsets

Click here to download a printable version of the Daily Bible Study for the week.


MONDAY—Vital Mindsets
Big Point: We need to balance our heart with our mind.

The movie industry in the United States generates over half a trillion dollars each year by entertaining Americans. No matter what you think about which movies deserve our attention and praise, it is clear that our emotions play a large part in why the film industry generates so much revenue. This doesn’t simply include sappy romantic comedies which engage our romantic emotions, but also the action movies that thousands flock to theaters to see, which engage an entirely different set of emotions. No one would argue that emotions aren’t important, however, if left unchecked or undirected, they can cause us to shift our focus from God and onto ourselves.

Last weekend Tim Butler said, “We can’t deny our emotions, but we also cannot deify our emotions or make them the only driving force in our life.” When we rely too heavily on our emotions (or our heart), we become too self-centered and forget that our joy should be found in God and not dictated by our current circumstances. Our emotions are temporary; Godly joy is eternal. We should embrace our heart, but only when it is paired with our mind—our understanding of God. Our mind can help balance our heart and help us to find our joy in God. Pastor and author John Piper writes, “…the mind was designed not to defend what we want, but to discover what is ultimately true, which should shape our wants and satisfy them more deeply with God.”

Our minds do not function properly without our heart, and vice versa. We need to use both in order to have the right mindset. Tim Butler talked about the four vital mindsets we all need in order to have the right mindset and make a comeback by teaching through Lamentations 3. This book takes place after the fall of Jerusalem, and the author, an Israelite, is lamenting the fall of his people. In the book, we can see how the author balances his raw emotion and his intellect.

 

READ IT… What does the Bible say?
Lamentations 3:17, 24 (New Living Translation)
17Peace has been stripped away, and I have forgotten what prosperity is… 24I say to myself, “The Lord is my inheritance; therefore, I will hope in him!”

Question: What emotions is the author feeling, and what does he do with them?

Answer:

 

BELIEVE IT… What is the lesson for me?
Do you maintain a balance between your mind and your heart? If so, how? If not, to which one (mind or heart) do you give more weight?

 

LIVE IT… What will I do now?
Over what areas of your life do you allow your emotions too much power? How can you fix this?

 

PRAY IT…
Thank God for the ability to reason and for the ability to feel (both are gifts from him). Ask him to help you balance both of them so that your joy is found in him, and no place else. Thank him for the example that the author of Lamentations has set.

 

More Living It Out


Dig Deeper with this week’s teaching pastor:

Click here to go deeper using the Life Group DVD by the teaching pastor or view the message, including bonus discussion questions.


Weekend Message Discussion Questions: Catching a meal after the service? Meeting with friends this week? Discuss the weekend message together:

  1. Would you consider yourself a person that makes emotional decisions or someone that removes the emotions from decisions when they need to be made? Share an example.
  2. The first Vital Mindset we need to have is this: Even though God knows everything about you, he still doesn’t change his mind about you. Do you believe that? How does having the certainty that God will love you no matter what affect your relationship with him?
  3. Since God doesn’t change his mind about you, you can know that your salvation is secure. How should this affect the way you live your life? How should it affect the way you interact with others? Explain.
  4. Read Isaiah 40:31. Why is waiting on God so difficult for us sometimes? What can you do to be more patient?
  5. Why is it important to be honest about your sins and to turn to Jesus? What do you think this process looks like?

Bible Reading Plan

Thank you for reading today’s LivingItOut! We encourage you to take it one step further by participating in a Daily Bible Reading plan. There are thousands of individual reading plans available and there is ONE that is just right for you! CLICK HERE to download a basic “Bible in a year” plan. Customizable reading plans available at Youversion.com or Biblegateway.com.


The Comeback—Memory Verse:

23Instead, let the Spirit renew your thoughts and attitudes. 24Put on your new nature, created to be like God—truly righteous and holy.
Ephesians 4:23-24 (NLT)


Like to Write?

We are always looking for volunteers to join the LivingItOut writing team. If you enjoy writing or proofing and want to try your hand at the LivingItOut, email Andy Rectenwald at AndyR@cedarcreek.tv


Want to Dig Deeper?

Check out CedarCreek Radio, a weekly podcast dedicated to helping you connect with God, go deeper into the Bible, and get to know some of the CedarCreek ministries and staff.

 

LIO week of 4/25: Series – The Comeback: Vital Mindset

Click here to download a printable version of the Daily Bible Study for the week.

Additional Resources

John Reading Plan

Making It Last, Marriage Resources

Deeper Study

 


2016 Memory Verses

Summer Concert Series
"My heart is confident in you, O God; my heart is confident. No wonder I can sing your praises!”
Psalm 57:7

Family Matters Series
"A house is built by wisdom and becomes strong through good sense.”
Proverbs 24:3

Comeback Series
"Instead, let the Spirit renew your thoughts and attitudes. Put on your new nature, created to be like God—truly righteous and holy.”
Ephesians 4:23-24

One On One Series
"Jesus spoke to the people once more and said, 'I am the light of the world. If you follow me, you won’t have to walk in darkness, because you will have the light that leads to life.'”
John 8:12

Crazy In Love Series
“Love each other with genuine affection, and take delight in honoring each other."
Romans 12:10

Awaken Series
“Wake up, sleeper, rise from the dead, and Christ will shine on you."
Ephesians 5:14b

Past Memory Verses

Click here to download the 2015 Memory Verses.

Click here to download the 2014 Memory Verses.

Click here to download the 2013 Memory Verses.

Click here to download the 2012 Memory Verses.

Click here to download the 2011 Memory Verses.