For those of you who can't join us in person, we offer the next best thing -- a blog version of our lesson, so that you can do it at home. This series is called: Scripture & Writing.
This week's lesson prepared by Brianna Renshaw
Scripture Reading: 1 John 1:4 – We write this to make our joy complete (NIV).
Devotion: Complete Joy by Brianna Renshaw
Motherhood is full of ups and downs. There are days when I just feel like screaming and then there are days I just feel like dancing. For instance, some evenings on our walks my daughter whines constantly – “I’m too tired. I’m thirsty. I’m hungry. My legs are too short.” And on other evenings, she giggles whimsically as she kicks up the fallen leaves and delights in the simple beauty of God’s creation.
The trick to dealing with the ups and downs is to write about both. Sharing our experiences as mothers through writing reveals to others that the joy of motherhood is not dependent upon one bad day; instead, it is made up of a combination of experiences – both the good and the bad. At the end of the day, no matter what happened, being a mom is a reason to be joyful.
Likewise, at the end of the day, no matter what happened, we can be joyful because we are saved in Christ. In 1 John chapter one, John urges believers to write their testimonies of Christ –to share Christ with others so that everyone can experience the joy and happiness of living in union with God. Our written testimonies show others that true joy is found in God’s presence and not found in circumstances or material possessions. Complete joy is God.
Prayer: Thank you God for the opportunity to meet together and share witness of your power and goodness, which brings us complete joy. Encourage each of us to share your work in our lives through our writing so that we can reach others and bring them into fellowship with you.
1. What does ‘this’ refer to in the scripture?2. For John, what is complete joy?3. Is it more important to write proof of the facts of Jesus’s historical life or to write about the meaning and significance of those events to us personally?4. What is the goal of writing our testimony?5. Is our belief in God less than John’s because we did not witness with our own eyes the life and death of Jesus?6. Why should we share our testimony?
11 Tips for Writing Your Testimony:
1. State in one sentence the point of your encounter with Jesus (the main spiritual truth of your story).2. Use words that are understandable.3. Include sensory details of the experience.4. Don’t focus too much on yourself; instead focus on what Jesus did for you.5. Be positive.6. Keep it simple.7. Use scriptures to back up your story but don’t overload your testimony with scriptures.8. Don’t preach.9. Let the Holy Spirit lead you.10. Trust God to give you the words.11. Re-write.
Homework: Share a story of how God has worked in your life.