Encountering God (Kelly Minter)

Here are the notes and words for the fill-in-the-blanks in our “Encountering God” women’s Bible study with Kelly Minter (via DVDs). You are welcome to join us any time [in-person] for this study @ 10:00am – noon on Friday mornings!

Week 1 - Session one: Introduction

Discussion Questions

What drew you to this study on spiritual disciplines?

When you think about spiritual disciplines, what comes to mind?

How are the spiritual disciplines more about relationship than results? What happens if we make them just about results?

How do you think spiritual disciplines help us orient our lives around what really matters?

Take a quick look at the table of contents (p. 3). Which of the disciplines listed there are you most interested in? Why?

What do you hope to gain from this study?

Homework: p. 10-25

Week 2 - Session two: Study, part 1

Discussion Questions

What’s something that really stood out to you in the video teaching?

How do the teachings of Scripture help us see the world as God sees it? To see things as they really are as opposed to how culture defines reality?

What is your history with the Bible? Was it a part of your growing up years? If so, how? If not, when did you first encounter the Scriptures?

How would you explain or describe the Bible to someone who knows nothing about it?

What are some recent things God has taught you through the Scriptures?

Homework: p. 26-39

Week 3 - Session two: Study, part 2

Discussion Questions

What does it mean for God to rebuke us through His Word, and how has He done that in your life?

How has God’s Word corrected you and restored you to an upright position?

How has God used Scripture to nurture and train you?

What does it mean to be equipped for every good work? How is God accomplishing that in your life through His Word?

Homework: p. 42-59

Week 4 - Session three: Pray, part 1

Discussion Questions

What’s something that really stood out to you in the video teaching?

Would you say you’re better at studying God’s Word or praying? Explain.

How would you define the current state of your prayer life? What seems to be the biggest hindrance for you when it comes to praying?

How does our view of God affect our prayer life?

Have you ever found yourself in the spot where prayer seems to be just a religious activity, such as the religious leaders who stood on the street corners to be seen? Why do you think that happens? What’s the danger in this?

Homework: p. 60-75

Week 5 - Session three: Pray, part 2

Discussion Questions

Why is it so important that we understand we pray to a personal God?

How is it comforting and encouraging to know we pray to a God who already knows what we need?

What does it mean that prayer is not transactional but relational? Why do we sometimes struggle with this?

Jesus taught that our heavenly Father is eager to give us good gifts. How has God proven Himself to be a good, trustworthy, and responsive Father to you in your prayer life?

Homework: p. 78-92

Week 6 - Session four: Express, part 1

Discussion Questions

What’s something that really stood out to you in the video teaching?

How would you describe what it means to worship God?

How does self-sufficiency hinder our worship? When have you experienced this?

How is it possible for us to worship out of our pain? When has this been your experience?

Why do we sometimes get lost in the trappings of worship – the right place, the right time, the best music, and so forth – and miss the heart of what worship is all about?

Homework: p. 93-109

Week 7 - Session four: Express, part 2

Discussion Questions

What do you think it means to be a passionate worshiper? Would you consider yourself to be one? Why or why not?

How do cultural norms affect how you express your worship to the Lord?

The woman who anointed Jesus worshiped with what she had. What specifically do you have to bring to Jesus as part of your worship of Him? And how does being forgiven much inspire you to love Him much?

What does it mean to worship the Lord with our possessions? Why is it so important that we do so, and how are you currently doing that?

Homework: p. 112-127

Week 8 - Session five: Quiet, part 1

Discussion Questions

What’s something that really stood out to you in the video teaching?

Why are solitude and quiet so important to our spiritual lives? How does our current culture hinder us in this practice?

What is your favorite way, place, and time to draw away and be quiet before the Lord?

How would you define Scripture meditation? Has this been a consistent discipline in your life? Explain.

Why is it important that we draw life from God, not from activity? How do the inner spiritual disciplines like solitude, rest, and Scripture meditation help us do that?

Homework: p. 128-141

Week 9 - Session five: Quiet, part 2

Discussion Questions

How has your meditation of Scripture helped you in times of difficulty? In times of temptation?

How does busyness get in our way of delighting in and meditating on God’s Word? How do our devices do the same? What intentional steps can we take to remove these hindrances?

Kelly talked about the jungle guide who spotted a sloth because he was familiar with the scenery. As your eyes have adjusted to the landscape of Scripture, what wondrous things out of God’s law have you recently seen?

Would you say you’re living the blessed life as described in Psalm 1? If so, what is the evidence? If not, what changes need to be made?

Homework: p. 142-157

Week 10 - Session six: Simplify, part 1

Discussion Questions

What’s something that really stood out to you in the video teaching?

How have you experienced the pressure to run harder and accumulate more? How has that affected your spiritual life?

What does it mean to store up treasures in heaven? Which would you say you’ve been more concerned about – storing up treasures in heaven or on earth? Explain.

Jesus taught about God’s care for the birds of the air and flowers of the field. Which illustration resonated with you the most, and why?

Jesus said where our treasure is, there our hearts will be also. What does that mean, and how have you seen your heart follow your treasure?

Homework: p. 158-171

Week 11 - Session six: Simplify, part 2

Discussion Questions

What does it mean to live generously? What are the characteristics of a person who lives generously? Would you describe yourself in that way? Why or why not?

How is living generously about more than just the way you handle money?

Has God ever asked you to leave your “gold” for “the boot”? Share what God taught you through the process.

What does it mean to live simply so we can live ready? How well are you doing that? Explain.

Homework: p. 172-188

Week 12 - Session seven: Engage, part 1

Discussion Questions

What’s something that really stood out to you in the video teaching?

Why is community so vital to our Christian faith?

What has the community of faith meant to your spiritual life throughout the years?

How does understanding who we are in Christ affect how we live out Christian virtues?

Based on the definition Kelly shared about biblical compassion, who is the most compassionate person you know? Why did you choose that person, and how is he/she a picture of Jesus to you?

Homework: p. 189-203

Week 13 - Session seven: Engage, part 2

Why do most of us struggle so much with humility?

Why is patience, forbearance, and forgiveness so important in living out our faith in community?

Paul said that peace should rule our hearts. With so much turmoil in our world and lives, how is that possible? And why is it so necessary?

How is the teaching and admonishing that takes place in the body of Christ currently helping you in your faith walk? How are you contributing to this in others’ spiritual lives?

Homework: put what you’ve learned into practice!