I'm taking some time to reflect back over what I learned this past month...
1. Praying through Scripture is a powerful way to pray.
Ever heard of a movie called War Room? A lot of women within the church are talking about this movie, but watching it made me think more about praying Scripture. After watching this film, a leader from a Bible study I attended shared with us a prayer that she uses for her family that weaves together verses from Scripture. And then it dawned on me, there is power in praying through Scripture!
I'm pretty sure I've been doing this, but it was like a light bulb came on and I thought, "Why don't I write down Scripture as my prayers for those that I'm praying for?"
2. War Room is the first Christian genre film that I've actually liked.
And that's saying a lot from a woman that studied filmmaking in college. I admit it. I don't like watching typical Christian-genre films. The acting, filmmaking, and dialogue are painful, and it gives Christian filmmakers a bad reputation as artists. Christian artists are made in the image of God with the talent to create, and yet our art falls short when we sanitize it. I didn't feel this way about War Room.
Sure, there were lines and acting that made me cringe, but overall I thought it conveyed a powerful message with characters that had depth.
3. Matt Maher's Sinners and Saints album tells a beautiful story.
I shared with you all about going to the Matt Maher concert last month, but I never realized how fluid his Sinners and Saints album is, especially the section from "Abide" to "Waiting" to "Because He Lives." Matt Maher tells a beautiful story through this album. You can listen to it here.
4. Music albums (CDS?) tell stories.
It has taken me 23 years of life on this earth to realize that musical albums tell stories just like films and book tells stories. Learned this tid-bit from the Matt Maher album.
5. Abiding in Jesus is the only thing that bears fruit.
I've been learning a lot about abiding in Jesus this past year, meaning I've been learning to choose to sit at Jesus' feet and spend time in prayer, in the Bible, or relying on Him in hard situations over trusting in my own efforts and activity.
This past month I was reading John 15, and I was reminded again of what Jesus said: " I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing."
It's that last part that gets me every time. Apart from Jesus we can do nothing. Nada.
And that's not a "You can't clean your room" nothing. It's a "You will not bear fruit, the things that really matter like the fruits of the Spirit: love, joy, peace, etc. You will not bear these apart from Jesus" nothing. And that is scary, but also comforting.
Because when we abide in Jesus, we will bear fruit like love, joy, peace, etc. Our activities do not produce this fruit: going to church, or attending a Bible study, or discipling someone younger than you. Those things are great, but abiding in Jesus is the only thing that bears lasting fruit.
These are just a few of the things that I learned in April. What did you learn this past month?
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