Tami W: October 2013 Archives

Holding Back

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1 Corinthians 8

Sometimes we need to hold back--even when we have the right to do something. That's the message Paul lays out as he addresses the fact that some of the believers in Corinth are eating food offered to idols. He explains that there is only one God (whom they serve) and that God isn't concerned about their eating of this food since an idol doesn't have any real existence (verses 4-6). Even so, Paul cautions the Corinthians about taking this action if doing so would damage or harm a fellow believer's spiritual walk. "Therefore, if food makes my brother stumble, I will never eat meat, lest I make my brother stumble" (vs. 13).

So what does this passage show us about being considerate of other Christ followers? What does it reveal about using discernment when it comes to exercising our freedom in Christ? Tami

Right Where You're At

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1 Corinthians 7:17-24

Have you ever thought If only I were like so and so, I could do great things for Christ or If I had the gift of "X" I could serve God better? Well if so, you're not alone, but Paul is telling us in 1 Corinthians 7:17-24 that we don't need to change to be able to serve God. In fact, we can and should serve Him whatever our circumstances. Who you are and where you aren't a surprise to God. It's by design.

So take a few minutes to think about your uniqueness and how you're going to use who you are and where you are for God? Tami

About Marriage

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1 Corinthians 7

Paul gives us some guidelines and good things to think about regarding marriage in 1 Corinthians 7:1-16. In a few short verses, he addresses marriage between believers and marriage where only one spouse is a follower of Christ, and gives us direction about staying together and keeping the marital relationship intact whenever possible.

So what does this passage show us about love and respect between spouses? What does it convey about how God values the relationship of marriage? Tami

Getting Along

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1 Corinthians 6

Paul addresses head on in 1 Corinthians 6:1-11 the topic of Christ followers taking one another to court to settle a dispute. He flat out tells us to avoid going down this road. Verse 7 spoke loudly to me. "To have lawsuits at all with one another is already a defeat for you." Definitely something to think about.

So what does this passage reveal about maintaining relationships within the body of Christ? Tami

A Critical Message

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Psalm 127

All I kept thinking as I read Psalm 127:1-2 is This is the message that is so lacking, (or maybe more accurately stated, ignored) in our world today. And it made me sad because understanding that unless the Lord is our foundation our living is in vain, is so critical for us individually, in our families, in our churches and for the nation in which we live.

So how important is it that the Lord be the foundation of your life? What can and will you do to help advance this important message, first with the people closest to you and then to broader circles? Tami

Hard Stuff Ahead

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Psalm 126

I dread going through tough times. But the fact of the matter is, I've been there before (plenty of times), and I know I'll be there again. It's just part of life and that's exactly what I see when I read Psalm 126--a clear message that hard times and circumstances, times of sorrow, times of hurt, times of loss, should be expected as we live for Christ. But the psalmist doesn't stop on that downer note; He goes on to let us know that we have hope because the Lord will restore us. He will turn our tears into joy. Thank you Lord!

So what are your circumstances today--are you dealing with hard times, or is your situation pretty good right now? Either way, Psalm 126 has something for you. So how will you use and draw on it this weekend? Tami

Stern Words

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1 Corinthians 5

Paul delivers a stern message in 1 Corinthians 5. He's talking to the body of believers, the church in Corinth, and calling them out regarding some serious sin issues. But he's not only addressing the sin, but how the people in the church who aren't participating in these sins are overlooking it. This entire chapter got me thinking about immorality and how the world today thrives on it. We see that on TV, in the movies, in magazines, in music. It's so commonplace that we become desensitized to it. So Paul's words were a good reminder for me about God's holiness and the standards He expects us to live by.

So what does this chapter show us about the seriousness of sin and about God's view of sexual sin? What about overlooking or condoning sinful behavior with other believers? Tami

God's Evaluation

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1 Corinthians 4

Paul refers to himself as a servant of Christ and a manager in 1 Corinthians 4:1-5. Then he goes on and tells the Corinthians that in those roles what matters to him is not how the Corinthians evaluate or judge his service and work, but how the Lord will judge him.

When you think about it, Paul's words make a lot of sense. We all like to receive the praise and approval of other people. And we can do a pretty good job of hiding our motives for doing things. I think that's why Paul says specifically that the Lord "will bring to light the things now hidden in the darkness and will disclose the purposes of the heart" (vs. 5).

Does knowing the Lord will examine and evaluate your service in the future factor into or motivate your daily living? How can you use this passage to help you prepare for this future evaluation? Tami

1 Corinthians 3:1-23

Paul sets us straight about our proper place and role as a follower of Christ in 1 Corinthians 3. The message that God is in charge and we are here to serve His purposes came across loud and clear for me through verses 6-7. "I [Paul] planted, Apollos watered, but God gave the growth. So neither he who plants nor he who waters is anything, but only God who gives the growth."

How would you describe your service for the Lord? What role(s) are you fulfilling for Him? Tami

Above and Beyond

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1 Corinthians 2:1-16

Once we receive Christ as our Savior, our understanding changes. Instead of relying on worldly wisdom, we now have supernatural wisdom as our guide. Paul tells us in 1 Corinthians 2:12 "Now we have received not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, that we might understand the things freely given us by God."

So think back over the last couple of weeks. Where did you follow godly wisdom rather than worldly wisdom? Then, if you haven't done this lately, thank God for the spiritual wisdom and discernment He's given you. Tami

No Comparison

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1 Corinthians 1

I was struck by God's greatness and my smallness as I read 1 Corinthians 1 this morning. Our flesh tells us that we should be in control of our lives and circumstances, that we should rely on ourselves, that we know what's best. And the overarching message of the world is You are the center of your universe. Well, that's clearly not the case. Paul tells us in I Corinthians 1:20 "Has not God made foolish the wisdom of the world?" and then in verse 25 "For the foolishness of God is wiser than men, and the weakness of God is stronger than men." These verses focused me this morning on my need to always be seeking God's direction and guidance. As I ended my time in the Word, I told God I will follow where You lead.

So how have you experienced God's wisdom and power in directing your life? Will you join me in telling God "I will follow"? Tami

Always Surrounded

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Psalm 125

Lately it seems like almost everywhere I look friends, co-workers, people at church are struggling with health problems, jobs, finances, relationships. So reading Psalm 125 was good because it gave me a needed reminder (plus a little boost) that God has got all the details of our lives covered, and because of that, we can stand firm. "Those who trust in the Lord are like Mount Zion, which cannot be moved, but abides forever. As the mountains surround Jerusalem, so the Lord surrounds his people..." (Psalm 125:1-2).

Did you get any reminders and/or encouragement from Psalm 125? How will you draw on and use Psalm 125:1-2 going forward? Tami

A God Who Helps

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Psalm 124

David tells us in Psalm 124:8 "Our help is in the name of the Lord, who made heaven and earth." But in getting to this final proclamation, he reminds the people of Israel how the Lord had protected them in and through many situations. I particularly liked the vividness of verses 2 and 3, "If it had not been the Lord who was on our side when people rose up against us, then they would have swallowed us up alive..."

Take a few minutes to think about how the Lord has protected, helped and sustained you. Then, finish the sentence below:

If it had not been the Lord who was on my side, then ________________________________.

Faith Check

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Romans 4:13-25

How's your faith today? Is it anything like Abraham's? Romans 4:20-21 tell us that Abraham never wavered concerning the promise of God, and that Abraham was "fully convinced that God was able to do what he had promised." How incredible is that?

So if your faith is solid, how'd you get to that point? And, if it's not, how can you work on that? Share your thoughts with all of us & leave a comment. Tami

Living Out Peace

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Acts 22:30-23:35

Paul's in a bad spot. He's caused a riot or two, he's under arrest of the Roman government and the Jews are trying to kill him. Pretty intense. Even so, here's what I don't see in Paul--anxiousness, fear, doubting, panic, irrational thinking. Instead, he responds quite calmly and logically. His trust in God is evident, and he's at peace with his situation.

So what can we do to push reactions and responses like fear, doubt and anxiousness aside? And then, how do we begin working on having peace--regardless of what we're going through? Tami


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Ephesians 4:17-32

Paul takes a look at two ways of living in Ephesians 4:17-32. First he describes the ungodly life before we have a relationship with Christ (old self), and then he shifts to what "new life" in Christ looks like (new self). I liked the approach Paul used in this passage. It was thought-provoking and helpful. By reading and considering the examples provided of both ungodly and godly living, we can get a pretty comprehensive picture of what our new self and new life ought to look like.

What did you learn about old self and new life from Paul? What evidence do you see in yourself of a new life as a new self? Tami

Truth Focused

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Ephesians 6:13-14

The belt of truth is the first piece Paul lists in his suit of spiritual armor. There's no doubt it's critical to our surviving and thriving as a follower of Christ. So today we're taking another look at this belt, spending a little extra time considering God's truth.

How are you learning God's truth? Are you intentional when it comes to taking in, studying and putting God's truth into practice? What role do church sermons, group Bible studies and one-on-one time in God's Word play? Tami

Buckle Up

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2 Timothy 3:16; John 8:31-32; Ephesians 6:10-14; Hebrews 4:12-13

God's Word, the Bible, is absolute truth, and it is a powerful weapon of defense against Satan. Paul instructs us to "fasten on the belt of truth" as part of our spiritual armor. That being the case, taking in and knowing God's Word is an absolute must.

So are you in the habit of using God's Word as a defense against Satan? What are some ways you fasten on the belt of truth? Tami

My Master

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Psalm 123

Generally when I talk or write about God I refer to Him as Father, God or Lord. But I don't typically refer to Him as master even though I fully believe and know that God is my master. So I was glad that Psalm 123 made the analogy of servants (us) looking to their master (God) because it got me thinking in a more focused way today about God being my master and what that truly means for me.

So what does God being master mean to you? How are you "looking to the hand" of God, your master, today? Tami

I Love Church

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Psalm 122

Psalm 122:1 made me smile this morning, and got me thinking about one of my favorite things to do each week--go to church. But, it also got me thinking about being involved with church. As I look around it just seems that regularly going to church is falling by the wayside. Activities--sports, family outings, work and other things--fill our weekends and evenings and before we know it, church has moved right down our list of priorities.

So does Psalm 122:1 describe you and your attitude? What is it about going to, and being part of, church that makes you glad? Tami

Don't Give Up

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Ephesians 6:10-20

If you're a Christ-follower, Satan wants to derail you and he's crafty at how he goes about it. Doubt and fear are key weapons he uses to pull us off course. And if Satan is successful, we'll pull back, maybe even completely stop what we're doing for the Lord. Well Paul's message in Ephesians 6:10-20 is just the opposite of what Satan would like to see. Paul is telling us "Don't stop. Don't give up." because through God's power we can defeat the attacks of the devil and stand firm. "Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand firm" (vs. 13). That's a boost we can all use and draw on today.

What encouragement did you draw from Ephesians 6:13? So how will you respond today and through the weekend? Tami

Incredible Shield

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Ephesians 6:10-20

Ephesians 6:16 spoke loudly to me this morning. "In all circumstances take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming darts of the evil one." You see my husband and I are in the middle of selling one house and buying another right now. That means change, uncertainty, details, lots of tasks to be completed--and yes, stress. When you think about it, this could be a ripe environment for Satan to get in and get us off track spiritually if we're not careful. So the reminder that we can extinguish all Satan's flaming darts with the shield of faith was just what I needed today.

How has faith protected you and helped you stay on track spiritually in the past? How will you use this incredible shield today?

The WHOLE Outfit

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Ephesians 6:10-20

I never get tired of reading about the armor of God. It's vital for us as followers of Christ. And, if we want to survive and thrive in our Christian walk we need to put on every single piece. Did you notice that Paul tells us twice in Ephesians 6:10-13 to put on the whole armor of God? That makes total sense because if we miss some of the pieces, then we won't be fully protected or prepared to deal with the strategies of the devil.

How often do you consciously think about putting on the armor of God? What do you do to make sure you're fully dressed with God's protective armor? Tami

God's Power

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Ephesians 6:10-12

All this week we're looking at and considering the armor of God. Now I've read Ephesians 6:10-20 umpteen times. So this morning as I prepared to read, I asked God to show me something I hadn't focused on before. My prayer was answered almost immediately because the very first verse captured my attention. "Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of his might." I read it three or four times, and each time I was impressed with the fact that without God's strength, any armor we try to put on will be useless against the devil. Thank you, God, for your strength and providing this important reminder this morning.

So how did God encourage you through Ephesians 6:10-20 today? Was there a verse, phrase or thought that was particularly meaningful to you? Tami

In the Know

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Ephesians 6:10-13; 1 Peter 5:8

Satan is real and, and no doubt about it, he is a formidable enemy. If you're a follower of Christ, he wants to take you down and destroy you. That being the case, it would be wise for us to be informed and knowledgeable about Satan so we can be prepared to ward off his attacks.

Go back and take another read of the two passages for today, and as you read look specifically for what these verses reveal about Satan. Then, post a comment with what you discovered.

P.S. Today we're launching a new series on Back to the Bible called The Enemy Strikes where we'll be talking about how to use the armor of God to protect us from the enemy. I encourage you to listen! And looking ahead, the programs for the rest of October are all focused on spiritual warfare and winning over temptation and sin. Hope you can join us.

Light Bulb Moment

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Psalm 121

I love when I read a passage that I've read many times before and something new jumps off the page at me. Well, that's exactly what happened today when I read Psalm 121. This is such an encouraging passage to begin with, but when I got to verses 3 and 4 I had one of those "light bulb" moments. Why? Because the God of the universe cares so much about us that He never sleeps or slumbers. "He who keeps you will not slumber. Behold, he who keeps Israel will neither slumber nor sleep."

So take a couple of minutes and really think about God being our Helper and that He never takes a break from that role. How amazing is that?!? How will this impact you going forward? Tami


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Psalm 120

Sometimes our circumstances are just plain...yuck (you fill in your own details). No, we don't like it at all, but those times are just part of life. That's what I see as I read Psalm 120. The writer finds himself living with and surrounded by ungodly people and apparently, he's unable to leave. So he does what he can. He cries out to God and relies on Him for strength and comfort to cope with this difficult situation.

So what does Psalm 120 show you about dealing with times of trouble and difficulties? How will you draw on these verses? Tami

Jonah--the Book

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Jonah 1-4

The Book of Jonah is rich with lessons for us to draw upon for daily life. For the last two weeks we've been looking at, and considering, this story chapter by chapter. But our reading today is the entire Book of Jonah. So if you haven't done this already, go back and read the entire account of Jonah all at once. Before you start, ask God to show you something new from this rich Book.

So what did God reveal to you through the story of Jonah today? What was the most important thing God impressed on your heart from this Book over the past two weeks? Tami

Pity Party

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Jonah 4:1-10

Jonah has his own little pity party after he delivers God's message to the people of Nineveh. He's angry because God chose to spare the Ninevites when they repented (Hmmm...isn't that what God did for Jonah, too?). By the time I finished Jonah 4, I was thinking Maybe Jonah could use another dose of fish belly! Now as much as I want to point my finger at Jonah, I know I've treated God poorly more than once in the past. And I'm guessing you have too?

So what do you do to combat this kind of self-centered attitude and thinking? And, for those times when we do end up there, what can we do to get back on track with the right perspective? Tami

Angry Prophet

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Jonah 4:1-11

After spending a few days in the belly of the fish, Jonah did take God's message to the Ninevites. But even though Jonah carried out God's command, he still wasn't on the same page as God. We see that pretty clearly in Jonah 4. As I tossed this passage around in my head, I couldn't help but wonder, what did Jonah miss out on because of his stubborn attitude and selfish will?

So what do we miss out on when we behave like Jonah? Tami

Powerful Words

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Jonah 3:1-10

So Jonah finally goes to Nineveh and calls out the message the Lord gives him against this evil city. And as soon as the people of Nineveh hear this message, everyone--including the king--believed and repented. Pretty amazing, not to mention, awesome, when you consider this was a "great city" that was doing enough evil that it "came up before" the Lord.

So what did Jonah's encounter with the Ninevites show you about the power of declaring God's Word? What does this account reveal about God's love and how He values people? Tami

About Me

Hi, my name is Tami Weissert, the P4 facilitator and the "voice" behind the blogs. I'm passionate about helping people grow spiritually and actively encourage Bible engagement through conference speaking and writing. I also served as co-host of the Back to the Bible radio program for over 8 years. A little about me. I'm married to Jeff, and we love scuba diving, playing with our 3 dachshunds and going to Husker football games. I also love growing orchids, singing and Diet Pepsi. I hope you'll join in the conversation as we read the Bible and grow together.

About My Blog

I'm passionate about engaging God's Word! And my blog is about just that--giving you opportunities to receive, reflect on and respond to Scripture. Each day you'll find a short passage as well as thoughts, challenges and application questions for you to think about and respond to. I look forward to interacting with you and learning together, so post comments as often as you'd like. You can even sign up below to get the blogs delivered to your inbox each day!

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About this Archive

This page is a archive of recent entries written by Tami W in October 2013.

Tami W: September 2013 is the previous archive.

Tami W: November 2013 is the next archive.

Find recent content on the main index or look in the archives to find all content.