"For this reason, make every effort to add to your faith goodness; and to goodness, knowledge; and to knowledge, self-control; and to self-control, perseverance; and to perseverance, godliness; and to godliness, brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness, love. For if you possess these qualities in increasing measure, they will keep you from being ineffective and unproductive in your knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ." - 2 Peter 1:5-8 NIV
Thoughts for Today
Faith in Christ as our Savior is a new beginning. Our saving faith marks the point where we begin the rewarding and demanding climb of the Christian life. Today's scripture tells us to "add to your faith" and then goes on to describe the building blocks of Christian character.
What are these building blocks? Goodness … knowledge … self-control … perseverance … godliness … brotherly kindness … and love.
These character traits don't happen overnight. Indeed, as we walk with Christ, trusting him, we should continue to grow in these areas throughout our entire life. God's Word goes on to say that if we are increasing in these qualities, our knowledge of Jesus will be effective and productive.
Consider this …
Time to look in a mirror. Which of these qualities is evident in your life? Are you growing in every area? Do you see evidence of your growth in the lives you are touching?
Remember, we can't change all at once. It's a lifetime process. And we can't do it on our own. Our strength comes from Jesus.
Lord, help me to grow in goodness … knowledge … self-control … perseverance … godliness … brotherly kindness … and love. Make my life more effective and productive in ways that honor and please you. In Jesus' name …
These thoughts were drawn from …Insight Group: Discover the Path to Christian Character by Jimmy Ray Lee, D.Min. With its emphasis on developing Christian character it is a powerful group for those who want to be sure to prevent life-controlling problems from developing in their lives, as well as for those who need to overcome a current problem.
- It enhances people's understanding of themselves and others.
- It helps people bond together in meaningful relationships.
- It helps prepare people for more meaningful relationships in subsequent small groups like home groups and Sunday school classes.
- It surfaces people for help who may otherwise never seek help.
- It helps break down the segregation of people in churches, turning "those people" and "our kind of people" into just "us."
- It helps prepare people to minister to others.
- It serves as a powerful evangelistic tool by ministering to people's felt needs and then pointing them to Christ.
Note: This curriculum was written especially for small groups, and we encourage people to use it that way. However, it can also be used effectively as a personal study for individuals or couples.
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