Treasures of Faith – Living Boldly in View of God’s Promises - In His Grip - Week of Jan. 5, 2015
Treasures of Faith –
Living Boldly in
View of God’s Promises
“All you have to do is preach through Hebrews 11 and I’ll do the rest.” Sharon had just shared one of our dreams with me. She loved Hebrews 11 and wanted to write a book on what she called “God’s Waiting Room.” She also wanted us to co-author the book. She said my task would be to research and preach on each character in the chapter. She would condense the preaching into book form. I responded, “As long as all I have to do is preach. Yes, I can do that.” It was fun to see how excited she was as we mapped out a timeline and talked through the process we would follow.
As the sermon series unfolded and Sharon transcribed every message and organized the material, we began to see that preaching doesn’t always lend itself to writing. This process would be much more difficult than we expected. I preached fourteen sermons on Abraham alone. This promised to be a grueling process. Anyone who writes books knows that publishing dates often get moved up, but this was not an option for us.
Every year the Women in the Church of the Presbyterian Church in America recommends a small group Bible study. That year they were holding a national conference and would introduce our book as the recommended small group study for that following year. Our publisher endorsed our plan and we committed to a detailed timeline for getting finished chapters to our editor. While it was difficult we met every deadline. Through circumstances beyond our control, the publication of the book was delayed. The Women in the Church leadership told our publisher that if it was not in their offices by a specific date, they would not be able to recommend it as the small group Bible study.
Suddenly we had about two months to edit, finalize and publish not only the book but a detailed Leaders Guide. The editing process had not even begun. Anyone with any sense knew that we were embarking on an impossible task, but everyone involved agreed it was worth trying. Let the writing marathon begin. Every few days we received two edited chapters from our publisher, one for the book and one for the Leaders Guide.
After a couple of weeks of non-stop writing that started earlier every day and lasted until late at night, I knew Sharon could not keep up this pace. One of the themes of the book was cultivating community and becoming channels of God’s compassion. I told Sharon she needed to practice what she was preaching. We asked two of her writing friends to help her write the Leaders Guide. These two women joined the writing team, and their fingerprints are all over the Leaders Guide. We wouldn’t have met our deadline without them.
Fifty-seven sermons and months of intense writing later, Treasures of Faith, Living Boldly in View of God’s Promises arrived in the offices of the Presbyterian Church in America in time to meet the deadline. That fall it was introduced to several thousand women at the conference in Atlanta as the recommended Bible study for the year. This book is filled with in-depth Bible study that gets the reader into the skin of each person in our spiritual family. Sharon says that sometimes she couldn’t see the keyboard or computer screen as she wrote because of how emotionally connected she felt to the biblical person she was writing about.
We are offering Treasures of Faith, Living Boldly in View of God’s Promises at a reduced price and including an Introductory CD interview in which Sharon and I talk about the writing process and this study. We also have a Small Group Study Package that includes 10 books, 10 Bonus CD’s and a FREE Leaders Guide for a savings of $78 off the retail price. This book traces our spiritual family tree and will change the way you think about your spiritual roots.
Remember Sharon’s promise that all I would have to do is preach? Not so. However, nothing is impossible when our hearts are in tune with the purposes of our God. We are airing Treasures of Faith on our daily broadcast so I hope you’ll join me in this new In His Grip series on Hebrews 11, as we unpack the history of our covenant family.
In His Grip,
Dr. Chuck Betters
Digging Deeper: Hebrews 11
Treasures of Faith, Living Boldly in View of God’s Promises
A verse by verse study of Hebrews 11. Each chapter includes a real life story, exposition of the scriptures, and Digging Deeper questions. For personal or small group study, a Leader’s Guide is Available as well as specially priced bundles for small group studies.