Take tangible steps to build authentic relationships with five friends and loved ones.
• Determine your preferred pathways to building authentic relationships by numbering the steps in order of priority.
• Share and explain your pathway with another person
|STEPS||Your Preferred Order|
|Introduce & connect them with other Christians|
|Showing Christ through my daily life|
|Asking about someone’s spiritual background|
|Building a safe space for open conversations|
|Reading the Bible together|
|Sharing stories about how God has changed my life|
|Sharing how the gospel is applicable to our daily lives|
|Praying for people in your daily life|
|Sharing the gospel|
|Praying with people in your daily life|
|Finding out someone’s perception of Jesus|
|Telling them you are a Christian|
|Building a friendship|
• Determine specific actions for building authentic relationships with loved
• Work in pairs and help each other to suggest two or three tangible actions for the first three steps of one another’s process of building authentic relationships with their friends/loved ones.
Which of these blessings are you praying for?
3. Inner Peace
4. Family Harmony
5. Financial Freedom
6. Progress in Career
7. Friendship and Relationships
8. Wisdom and Intelligence
9. Direction for the Future
11. Eternal Life
12. The fullness of the Holy Spirit
“Until now you have not asked for anything in My name. Ask and you will receive, and your joy will be complete.” -John 16:24
Pause now and pray for the blessings.
Dear Heavenly Father,
Thank You for Your unchanging love. Thank You for sending Jesus so that we may be blessed in every way. (name) need Your help and blessings. Please bless (name) with ____________________ __________________ right now in Jesus’ name. Amen.
Craft and share your life story using personal illustrations and your driving force.
3 Components Of A Life Story
This part of your life focuses on your life before you began your relationship with Christ. You can talk about what was important to you, your attitudes, needs and problems.
Think about the driving force in your life:
Next, share an illustration. You should be able to think of many examples from your life but choose only one to illustrate your life story. You will refer to this illustration again in the last part of your life story.
a. Your Driving Force
b. Your Illustration
The second part of your story focuses on how you came to Christ. If you became a Christian as an adult, it should be pretty clear. However if you grew up in a Christian home, this may be more challenging. Although you have known Christ for most of your life, think about the turning point in your walk with God.
The final part of your story focuses on how your life changed after you came to Christ or after Christ changed that area in your life. Your relationship with God is so important that you should point to something that changed as a result. You should also refer back to the illustration in the first part of your story. For example, if you were driven by anger, how has knowing God helped you to deal with your anger?
Now that you have written your life story, the next step is to learn how to make a smooth transition to your story. Here is an example of a transition statement that you may want to use:
“Tim, you know I’m a Christian but I have not been able to explain my spiritual journey. Recently I have been working on developing my life story, putting significant life events together in a 3-minute version. I would like to buy you coffee and get your opinion on it. Do you have some time this week?”
• Introduce THE FOUR track available on GodTools
• Share the central message of the Gospel using the four symbols
THE FOUR Symbols
Read 1 John 4:16 and write it out in your own words
b. Explain the first point in your own way and with a personal example
a. Read Romans 3:23 and write it out in your own words
b. Explain the second point in your own way and with a personal example
a. Read John 3:16 and write it out in your own words
b. Explain the third point in your own way and with a personal example
a. Read John 1:12 and write it out in your own words
b. Explain the fourth point in your own way and with a personal example
• Familiarize with resources on handling objections
• Ask to follow up questions leading to further explorations of faith
• Initiate follow-up session with new or existing believers
• Conduct follow-up sessions with new or existing believers
“Tim, let’s say, if we just got to know each other today and became friends. But we don’t keep contact with each other after today. Do you think our friendship will grow? It is the same with your relationship with God. You have just begun a relationship with God today/recently. If you don’t continue to develop this relationship, you will not grow to know Him better. I would like to help you develop your relationship with God, is that ok with you? ”
a. Make them aware of their need to grow in their relationship with God
b. Set up an appointment immediately to meet for the first follow-up session
c. Arrange a specific time and place to meet.
d. Ask the believer to review the gospel message (e.g. the Four Spiritual Laws) before you meet again and to thank Christ once more for coming into their lives.
a. Ask how things have been since you last met
• Allow the believer to share
• Ask if he/she has read the gospel tract (e.g. The FOUR tract)
• Ask if he/she has thanked Christ for coming into his/her life
• Respond to any questions
b. As needs are expressed, share your own experiences and answers from God’s Word. Share how God has worked in your life.
b. Encourage the believer to ask questions.
• How can you create an environment that encourages people to ask questions?
3. Take time to listen to the new believer and be attentive to the leading of the Holy Spirit during the appointment.
Every Christian can have the assurance that a right relationship exists between himself and God. Without this confidence, it is impossible for one to experience true happiness and complete fulfilment in life.
The moment that you, as an act of faith, receive Jesus Christ into your life to be your Lord and Savior, He comes in. This is what He promises in Revelation 3: 20 and Romans 10:10.
Behold, I stand at the door and knock; if anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come into him and will dine with him, and he with Me. – Revelation 3:20
For it is with your heart that you believe and is justified, and it is with your mouth that you profess your faith and are saved. – Romans 10:10
Have you received Christ into your life in this way?
If so, where is Jesus Christ right now in relation to you?
On the basis of Revelation 3:20, how do you know that Christ is in your life?
Now that you have received Jesus Christ into your life, you have established a personal relationship with Him.
You have now become a true Christian. You do not become a Christian by living a good life or by being born into a Christian family. The word “Christian” means “Christ in one” – Christ living in you. The Bible tells us that many things happen when Christ comes to live in you.
Romans 1:4 …who was declared the Son of God with power by the resurrection from the dead, according to the Spirit of holiness, Jesus Christ our Lord.
And we know that the Son of God has come, and has given us understanding so that we may know Him who is true; and we are in Him who is true, in His Son Jesus Christ. This is the true God and eternal life. -1 John 5:20
But if there is no resurrection of the dead, not even Christ has been raised; and if Christ has not been raised, then our preaching is vain, your faith also is vain. Moreover, we are even found to be false witnesses of God, because we testified against God that He raised Christ, whom He did not raise, if in fact the dead are not raised. For if the dead are not raised, not even Christ has been raised; and if Christ has not been raised, your faith is worthless; you are still in your sins. -1 Corinthians 15: 13-17
(b) Since other Christians are also God’s children, what is your relationship to them?
For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; not as a result of works, so that no one may boast.-Ephesians 2:8-9
(b) How is salvation obtained?
For He rescued us from the domain of darkness, and transferred us to the kingdom of His beloved Son, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins. -Colossians 1:13-14
Make sure that your character is free from the love of money, being content with what you have; for He Himself has said, “I WILL NEVER DESERT YOU, NOR WILL I EVER FORSAKE YOU.” -Hebrews 13:5
(b) Since Christ has promised never to leave you, how many times do you have to invite Him to come into your life?
Read 1 John 5:11-13
And the testimony is this, that God has given us eternal life, and this life is in His Son. He who has the Son has the life; he who does not have the Son of God does not have the life. These things I have written to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, so that you may know that you have eternal life. -Hebrews 13:5
Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creature; the old things passed away; behold, new things have come. -2 Corinthians 5:17
For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor any other created thing, will be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord. – Romans 8:38-39
My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me; and I give eternal life to them, and they will never perish; and no one will snatch them out of My hand. My Father, who has given them to Me, is greater than all; and no one is able to snatch them out of the Father’s hand. -John 10:27-29
Every Christian can experience fellowship with God moment by moment as he learns to confess sin in his life. To live in fellowship with Jesus Christ is to experience a full and abundant life.
When you received Jesus Christ, you established a personal relationship with Him. You became a child of God (John 1:12). You received His life so now you bear His name “Christian”.
A common question that many Christians ask is, “What happens when I sin and do things that are displeasing to God?” In other words, “Is my relationship broken? Does Jesus leave my life?”
The answer to this question can best be understood if we distinguish between our relationship to God and our fellowship with God.
We can illustrate the difference between our relationship to God and our fellowship with God by the father-son relationship in a human family. When a boy is born into a family, he is the son of his father’s life in him. He then bears his father’s name.
Let’s suppose the son decides to leave his home and does many things to disgrace his father. Is he still his father’s son?
The relationship of the father and son is permanent. This relationship exists regardless of the behaviour of the son.
However, what would happen to their fellowship? Because of the action of the son, their fellowship has been broken. What must the son do to restore their fellowship? The son must go to his father, admitting he is wrong and asking for forgiveness.
Let us relate this illustration to our relationship with God. Our relationship with God, our Father, is permanent. We are His children. This relationship never changes. But when we sin and do things that are displeasing to God, our fellowship is broken. So, in order for our fellowship with God to be restored, we must tell Him that we have been wrong and accept His forgiveness.
We can illustrate the differences in our relationship with God by these three circles.
Read 1 Corinthians 2:14-3:3. Write the answers to the following questions in the blanks above.
While the natural man does not have Christ in his life, Christ is in the lives of both the spiritual man and carnal man; they are Christians.
Now, let us examine each circle to see which one has both a relationship and fellowship with God. Write the answers in the corresponding blanks.
The carnal man is a Christian who is living a self-directed life because of sin.
The carnal man in circle No. 3 can restore his fellowship with God by confessing his sin. Confession involves three things: agreeing, thanking and repenting.
When we confess, we AGREE with God that He has revealed to us as sin is sin. We also THANK God that our sin has been paid for by Jesus Christ’s death on the cross. Confession also involves REPENTANCE. Repentance is a change of attitude which will result in a change of action.
The Christian needs to understand that when he sins and takes over the direction of his life once again, he should immediately confess his sin and God will restore him to fellowship.
Read 1 John 1:9
Everyday can be an exciting adventure for the Christian who knows the reality of being filled with the Holy Spirit and who lives constantly, moment by moment, under His gracious control.
For three years the disciples had walked, worked and talked with Jesus. They knew Him, trusted Him and loved Him. On one particular night, however, Jesus told His disciples some very upsetting news: He would soon die.
Put yourself in the disciples’ place. How would you feel? Confused? Frightened? Helpless? They probably did, too.
But then imagine hearing Jesus tell you, as a result of His going to be with God the Father, another friend would come -one who would be with you, one who would be in you.
The friend who was to come is the Holy Spirit. An amazing thing that Jesus told His followers was that the Holy Spirit would reside in them. Even better, He would “be with them forever”. Imagine the encouragement this offered to these individuals. God would make His home within the lives of those people who would love and receive Him.
In this way, the disciples would not be left with the impossible tasks of trying to imitate the character of Christ and attempting to continue His mission. Instead, through the Holy Spirit, the very life of Christ with all His character, authority and strength could be lived through their individual lives and personalities.
Twenty centuries later, Christ’s promise still remains true. He offers hope to those who are trying to live as He lived. Anyone who has sincerely attempted to reach that goal knows that, worthy as it is, it is a hopeless ideal. Only Jesus Christ can act like Jesus Christ.
And that, of course, is the uniqueness of Christianity. Instead of frustrating us with the inevitable failure of attempting to live up to impossibly high ethical, moral and spiritual standards, the only Person who ever perfectly fulfilled all those standards offers to do it again – through each of us. Once Jesus has entered into a life, that person has the potential to let Him live out His life in and through him. This is available to anyone!
It sounds good, doesn’t it? The obvious question is, how can I experience the resurrected Christ living His life through me? The following will help to explain.
Turn to the booklet entitled “Have You Made the Wonderful Discovery of the Spirit-filled Life”?* Read it through before proceeding with the rest of this booklet.
After completing “Have You Made the Wonderful Discovery of the Spirit-filled Life?”* return to this booklet and answer the following Review Questions.
* Read “Have You Made the Wonderful Discovery of the Spirit-filled Life” here: cru.org/us/en/train-and-grow/spiritual-growth/the-spirit-filled-life.html
(As you answer the following questions refer to the booklet “Have You Made the Wonderful Discovery of the Spirit- filled Life?”)
Receiving Jesus Christ as personal Lord and Saviour is the most important decision in life. The act of receiving Jesus Christ by faith starts a whole new life. Just as physical life requires air, food, rest and exercise, so spiritual life has its requirements for growth and development.
The moment you receive Christ, you were born into God ‘s family and you received everything you need to live the abundant Christian life. Spiritual growth results from trusting Jesus Christ. “The righteous man shall live by faith ” (Galatians 3:11). A life of faith will enable you to trust God increasingly with every detail of your life.
The nourishment for spiritual well-being is provided in the following Principles of Growth:
Prayer is talking and listening to God. Failures in the Christian life can most often be traced to prayerlessness.
We talk to God through prayer as illustrated in the diagram; He talks to us through the Bible.
Physical food is necessary for physical life. Without food, one becomes weak and eventually ill. This is true spiritually as well. The Bible is our spiritual food.
As we read God’s Word, the Bible, God talks to us as illustrated in the diagram. As we pray, we talk to God. We need to constantly practise both.
It is necessary to read God’s Word daily for daily strength.
The key to continual growth in the Christian life is obedience to the will of God. To know the importance of prayer and Bible study is of little value unless they are applied in our lives.
In light of our study and discussion, what three things do you think God wants you to do daily?
Realising that prayer and Bible study are essential for our spiritual growth, I am going to set aside from ______ (time) to ______ (time) each day to pray and study the Bible.
The Bible is God’s inspired Word to Man. He has something to say to you. Much of the adventure of the Christian life comes from discovering through the Bible more of what God is like and what His plans are for you.
Throughout history God has desired to communicate with the people of His creation. Before Jesus came, God spoke to and through the committed people of the Old Testament who recorded His Word. God then sent His Word to earth personally, in the person of Jesus Christ (John 1:14). While Jesus was on earth, as well as after His death and resurrection, God again directed committed men to record the words and ministry of the Son of God. The results of their faithfulness and availability is the New Testament.
The Bible is the entire record of God’s communication to us. It has been given to us by God who desires our fellowship and worship.
The Bible is the most important book one could read. Many people do not know how to listen to what God is saying to them in His Word. A meaningful relationship with the Lord is dependent on hearing and understanding what He is sharing with us. Following are some hints to help you begin your study of God’s Word.
Understanding that reading the Bible is not like reading any other book. The Bible is God’s inspired Word to Man. In this book, God has something to say to you. Therefore, read with the attitude, “Lord, this is Your personal letter of love and instruction to me. Help me to understand and obey Your counsel and commands.”
In addition to the Bible, you will need a pen or pencil, paper and a quiet place to study. Pray and ask the Holy Spirit to guide you in your study. Your study will normally involve three steps: Observation, Interpretation and Application.
In this step you observe in order to find out what the passage says. You may need to read the passage several times or you may wish to write out the passage concentrating on “What does the passage say?”
The second step involves the question, “What does this passage mean?” Ask: “What does it say about God and man?”
In this step you ask the question, “How does this passage apply to my life?” You may ask the following questions:
• Is there a command to obey?
• Is there a promise to claim?
• Is there sin to confess?
• Is there an attitude to change?
• Is there an example to follow?
Here is an example of how to follow the three steps using 1 Peter 5:7:
|I Peter 5:7- ‘ Casting all your anxiety upon Him because He cares for you.||God cares so much for me that He wants me to give Him all my problems.||I need to cast my problems on the Lord: my fear of failure, my relationship with my boss, etc.|
Read John 15:10-12. Using the three steps and following the example, let God speak to you. This chart is provided for you to use. Apply the three steps as you study the Bible daily. Consider buying a notebook to record your study of the Bible.
Prayer is talking with God. Every Christian has the privilege of communicating directly with God. If we desire a vital and fulfilling Christian life, we need
to learn to talk with God. Through prayer, we can appropriate all of God’s resources for us in Jesus Christ.
Any fulfilling relationship involves two-way communication. A look at the biographies of people recorded in the Bible clearly shows the importance of communication between God and His people. As long as these individuals listened to God, obeyed Him and prayed, their spiritual lives were radiant. When these same people, however, failed to hear and obey God and talk with Him through prayer, spiritual problems crowded in.
The same thing can happen to us today. God communicates with us through His Word, the Bible. If we desire a rich and fulfilling Christian life, we also need to learn to talk with God. To pray is simply to converse or talk with Him.
Prayer was an important emphasis in the life of Jesus Christ. His desire to seek His Father’s presence and know His will through prayer is apparent throughout His earthly life. The life of Christ was a living conversation with God the Father; prayer was the backbone of Christ’s life and ministry. To become like Christ, we need to learn to pray.
Prayer should include the following elements: Worship and Praise, Thanksgiving, Confession, and Specific Requests.
Take a few minutes to worship and praise God now. Tell Him how much you appreciate Him and why. Considering the character of God described in 1 Chronicles 29:11, 12, tell God your thoughts about Him.
Now thank God for these things.
Are you aware of anything in your life that is not pleasing to God? If so, confess your sin:
Take a few minutes and ask God to show you what is not pleasing to Him. Privately, list these on a separate sheet of paper. Now pray and confess this sin. Claim the promise of 1 John 1:9 and write this verse across your sheet. Then destroy your list.
If we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.-1 John 1:9
Take a few minutes and list your specific needs and requests. When your requests to God are specific, you will know when He has answered them.
Prayer can become enjoyable when you write your requests every day in your devotional notebook. This provides a permanent record of your requests. It is also exciting to review your requests periodically and see the many ways God has answered and actively involved Himself in your life.