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2022 Congregational Study, BEING Challenge

by Rev. Joshua Reifsteck on November 02, 2022

As I write this, we in the church office are getting ready to launch the 2022 Congregational Study, Being Challenge. But as you read this, we will be well underway. So I wonder: Did you join a small group? How’s it going? Did you grab a book for private study? How’s that going? Have you missed a day of those devotions? Five days? Have you even opened the book? Or are you only engaging with the study through the weekly sermons? I don’t know your answer to these questions, but I pray that this endeavor—the study, small groups, and sermon series—has been rewarding for you, however much or however little you have participated.

We chose this study because it fit well with our theme for the year, “For the sake of others,” though perhaps in a counterintuitive way. As Christians, we all want to serve as we have been served; we all want to love as we have been loved, to forgive as we have been forgiven. But we can only serve others well when we are deeply rooted in good spiritual habits. Why? Because we need to know love to love others. We need to know forgiveness to forgive others. We need to know the service of Jesus to serve others like Jesus. “Put your oxygen mask on first before you help the person next to you,” right? We chose this study because we want to make sure that every member of Calvary has a deep wellspring to draw from when they go out the door. Whoever you meet, we want you prepared to share Jesus.

So how is the study going? How are you immersing yourself in Jesus? Has the study invigorated your prayer life? Your Bible study? Your connection to your church family? If your answer to any of these questions is uncertain, that’s appropriate! Habits don’t change overnight, so don’t be surprised if the changes are slow. And don’t be surprised if you encounter resistance. The devil doesn’t want you to be rooted in the word of God. He doesn’t want you praying. He’ll do whatever he can to convince you that your church family isn’t worth your time.

But know that these habits are worth it, for if we neglect these spiritual habits, we do so to the detriment of ourselves and to the detriment of our witness to others. So please know that if you’re behind, it’s never too late to catch up, so go read what you missed. If that’s too daunting, just skip the days you missed and read only today’s devotion. Better to aim for 40 days of exercise and only do five than to never exercise at all. Better to do one day of exercise than none at all.

Please join me in praying for the people of our congregation, both those who are participating and those who are not, whatever their reason. And God bless you in your study.

Pastor Josh Reifsteck