Nobody wants to get hurt – whether emotionally or physically. So, we take many precautions to protect ourselves from being hurt. For us to get hurt, we have to make ourselves vulnerable. A child who has been hurt by falling off a bed tends to be a little bit more cautious about going to the edges.
True confession: my son fell off the bed once and developed a fear of going near the edge – at least until his grandmother taught him how to climb down the bed using the sheet to lever himself down (don’t you just love grandmas?) Once he was in control again we couldn’t we keep him on the bed – unless he was asleep.
In a similar manner, a woman who has been hurt protects her heart. She is cautious about what she reveals or who she reveals it to. A man who wants to win such a woman has to convince her of his sincere and promise to treat her secrets and her heart with respect.
So, how do we get the fear of being hurt?
· By recognizing that hurt is a part of living in a fallen world.
· By learning to forgive those who hurt us.
· By recognizing warnings signs and avoiding them or accepting the consequences if we choose to ignore the signs.
Jesus knew He was going to be hurt – physically and emotionally. He would suffer the ultimate hurt: death. As we follow His journey in John 14-18, we see Jesus moving determinedly towards His crucifixion.
Now, I’m not telling you that you should chase after things that are going to hurt you – definitely not! But when we focus on Jesus, we realize that hurt is a part of life and His life and death give us hope.
Before I Go is Sarah Koontz's newest free online Bible study. It explores Jesus’ final teaching and prayer in John 14-17. The study consists of 21 daily e-mails (5 study days + 2 rest days each week). It includes a reading guide, devotionals, shareable graphics, and free digital downloads. The estimated time commitment is 10-15 minutes per day.
Before I Go is a slow walk through the hours leading up Jesus' death. When reading, we sometimes rush through these chapters without making the connections. Each day focuses on a word (usually the theme for the days’ reading).
The Before I Go Bible study invites you to take note of the lessons that Jesus imparted to His disciples – to us – in those last moments before His death. Come. Abide. Love. Share.
If you have not accepted Jesus as your Lord and Savior, this study will introduce you to Him as a Person worth knowing. You will see the plan of salvation being unfolded and understand how much God loved you and the price that was paid for your life. If you are already a believer, Before I Go will remind you of how blessed you are and how much the Father and the Son loves you.
1. The key words that Jesus uses in His final address to His followers are a powerful message for us:
Come. Believe. Receive. Remain. Rejoice. Abide. Love. Testify. Study. Ask. Know. Pray. Glorify. Sanctify. Share.
Each of these words require an action from us and they also serve to strengthen our faith.
2. Sometimes “healthy branches must sometimes be trimmed back in order to increase the productivity and yield of the plant”. I’m not a gardener so I didn’t know that. I thought only the diseased branches had to be pruned. But knowing that both the healthy and unhealthy branches need to be pruned, put things into perspective.
Growth is a natural part of being connected to the Master Vine. Pruning is required for productive growth.
3. The way I approach my relationship with God makes a difference in my worship. Like the brother of the prodigal son, how I see myself, affects my attitude towards my Father’s work.
Jesus will return one day and when He does,
there will no sadness, pain, sorrow or tears. That’s a day I’m looking forward
to, how about you?
I received an Advanced Reader Copy of Before I Go as part of Sarah’s launch team. A review was not required. You can sign up for the study on Sarah's website.
Challenge: Make note of how you have been hurt in the past. If you have not already done so work on forgiving the person or persons who hurt you.
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