For this month’s edition of Prayer Corner, Deacon Henry will be sharing about what he learned from the Total Growth Discipleship Course facilitated by Rev. Paul Chan.
September ’22: Sharing After Total Growth
By Deacon Henry Cheung
A sharing of what I learned from the Total Growth Discipleship Course.
1. Be Still before God: Cultivating an Intimate Prayer Life
Have you ever felt that your life is so busy that you don’t have time to pray? Rest assured; you are not alone. Once we invite God in our everyday lives. We will have more of His peace. We need to start praying more. He can change our habits to the point that we live a life in constant prayer. As we persist in prayer we grow in character, faith, and hope. With Him we can overcome every storm.
We also need to find a quiet place, pick up the bible and turn to a scripture or the Psalms. Read, listen, and ask God to come. Let His word to stir your heart. Understand yourself better. Get a glimpse of your life’s purpose through His eyes. Worship Him for who He is. God alone is worthy of honor, glory, and praise.
1 Thessalonians 5-17, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.
I encourage you and challenge you to seek intimacy with God every day.
2. Dwelling in God’s Word: Reading Scripture Meaningfully
If we are to understand what we read, we will need to meditate upon it. Some passages of Scripture lie clear before us. There are texts of Scripture that are made and constructed on purpose to make us think. Our heavenly Father would educate us by making us think our way into divine mysteries. Meditation and careful thought exercise us and strengthen us for the reception of the truths. If we ask the guidance and teaching of the Holy Spirit, it will follow, that we shall be ready to use all means toward the understanding of the Scriptures.
Acts 8:31 when Philip asked the Ethiopian eunuch whether he understood the prophecy of Isaiah, he replied. “How can I, unless someone guides me?” Then Philip went up and opened to him the Word of the Lord. May the Holy Spirit be with us when we take His book and begin to read and want to know what it means, we must ask the Holy Spirit to reveal the meaning.
3. Love in Action: Building Biblical families & Relations
Every family has problems, some minor, some major. There is no such thing as a perfect family. All too often, ungodly words are spoken in times of heated communication. We all make mistakes that hurt or disappoint our family members, and we have all been hurt or disappointed by those we love. We are working to heal and resolve the conflicts.
God created families. He wanted us to have relationships and to depend on one another. Family was designed to provide us with love, a feeling of belonging, comfort, affection, quality time and learning. When family fails to provide for these needs, we experience a sense of loss.
The first step to righting wrongs in the family is to start with ourselves. None of us is without sin or error.
Matthew 7:2-5 It is easy to point the finger at others and tell them what they are doing wrong. Once we identify the sin, we can turn it over to God and ask for His forgiveness and help in restoring our relationships. You may feel that others are far more wrong than you are. However, God is the judge, and we need to let Him deal with others’ issues. We can’t control the behavior of others, but we can control our own responses. Whatever mistakes have already happened, we need to decide to promote forgiveness and reconciliation. Partner with God and take action to become a family healer. We can all be better people when we have family members who support and encourage us.
4. Servant Leader: Be Like Jesus
If we want to share Jesus with others, we have got to live like Him, love like Him, and listen like Him. If you say you follow Jesus, but your life tells a different story. Every one of us has hypocritical moments because we are not perfect people. We do make mistakes. When we are faithful to confess our sins and ask for forgiveness, Jesus offers us grace freely. We should make a conscious effort to avoid hypocrisy.
Jesus said to love everyone. It means loving every person like Jesus, including the people we don’t like. Remember we are all made in the image of our Creator. Every one of us was handcrafted by God, and we are created in His image. Ephesians 2:10 tells us that we are God’s masterpieces. When we believe that, it is easier to extend that kind of love and acceptance to others. Let us change the way we see others in our lives. Let us start treating other people the way Jesus would treat them.
Jesus instead lorded over His people, fleeced the flock, provides for those who come to Him to be served and to serve. He is the Servant King who in humility serves us salvation when we deserve condemnation for our rebellion against Him. When He was nailed to a cross to serve us, He gave His life as a ransom for our sins. Matthew 20:28.
5. Living out Christ–Your Work Matters to God
Day in and day out we toil and labor. For many hours a day we put our hands to the proverbial plow and push with all our might. All the while, we ask ourselves if we are making a difference. God has made each of us just as we are, and He has designed us to work. As a worker Himself, God created us to resemble Him in this way. “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth Genesis 1:1” and “Then God said, “Let us make mankind in our image, in our likeness (Genesis 1:26)”. God is active. He is creating and working. If God intentionally involves Himself in work, then it must be a good thing. We are workers and workers with a specific task. We are meant to carry forward God’s grand and wondrous building project. “Fill the earth and subdue it. Rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky and over every living creature that moves on the ground. (Genesis 1:28)”. Our work is not meaningless. Our work has deep eternal meaning and purpose. It is the space God has given us to bring glory to Him and to be a blessing to others. This is our calling. Our work yields a great deal of benefits to us and our family. Our financial gain, daily provisions, and cultural influence are all God given by products of our creative efforts. The ultimate reason we work is to honor our creator God with the gifts and talents He has blessed us with.
6. Sharing Love–Evangelism and Mission in Action
Being a disciple maker means leaving room in our schedules for the Spirit to work, to move us to action, and to direct us to fulfil His Purpose. Pray that the Spirit will move us where we need to go to reach people, He is calling us to reach. Pray that the Lord would use us to accomplish His great plan and purpose, and then let Him Work.
Thank you, God, for your generous gift of sending your Son to die on the cross for our sins. Thank you for the gift of salvation on the promise of living water. Help us to use and share the gifts you have given us with others who might need them today. Matthew 28: 19 “Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit” I pray that you will find these notes helpful to you. If you would like to learn more, join others to take Total Growth course. May God be with you. Amen.