There are a couple of things I could write about today. I could write about leading a Bible study (something I did yesterday) or I could write about how just one person can make a seemingly terrible day become okay again. In reality, I know I will probably not write about either of these topics and today will just be another terrible blog.
You know what, I’ll talk about leading a Bible study. Somethings are meant to be kept to ourselves for our personal reflection and gratitude – the person who made my seemingly terrible day become okay is one of them.
I’ve led Bible studies before. Not many but I have led them. I first led one when I was at uni; it was an unofficial student Bible study – I wasn’t in a great place with God yet here I was leading a Bible study. I had decided upon the ‘I Am’ sayings of Jesus purely because I felt I could lead discussion in that without actually getting involved. That evening remains in my memory because although I didn’t want to know God on that day – He touched everyone else in that room. I can’t remember what was said, or what was done, or even who exactly was there but I do remember that the Holy Spirit came. It filled people with the power of tongues, it gave people people… I was in a terrible place yet God still used me.
At my current church, I’ve led three house group Bible studies. Each one slightly better than the last. The first time I led, I didn’t want to rock the boat so I just stuck to the same ideas and patterns that we had been following. That was something I really struggle with. Being so young, in human age and Christian maturity, a lot of the time what gets said at house group goes over my head. The first study I led was the first of our Advent series, and in my eyes it was horrible. I didn’t know what I was doing, I was nervous and I completely forgot that it wasn’t about me – it was about God. Even though people talked and engaged and met with Jesus, I couldn’t help that feel that I had failed. I hadn’t gotten anything out of the session, I hadn’t received the Holy Spirit. But looking back, that didn’t matter. The person’s house we met, at the end, said to me “next time you lead Louise, lead it like you would lead a student one” and that’s what I tried to do.
The second time I was definitely more confident in. We were supposed to be following the sermon but me being me I wasn’t going to do that! I decided to do a session on something I’ve always wanted to do – God’s Chisel by the Skit Guys. A video that without doubt makes me cry, a passage in the Bible that reminds me that God does not make junk – I am not junk, and a session I thought we could all do with at that moment in time. I tried to lead it as student-y as I could. I didn’t want to offend people or make people uncomfortable or make people feel I didn’t care for the way they learn. The group seemed to respond well to the video and the conversations that were had were certainly encouraging. The one thing people didn’t seem to like was the Holy Roar, when everybody prays at the same time – as someone who can’t and doesn’t like praying aloud, the Holy Roar means you can physically raise your voice to Jesus. I’ll know never to do that again.
And the last time I led was last night. We were trying to decide what our study was going to be on and last week (during this discussion) I simply went on Amazon and bought a study book. For the next 14 weeks, we are looking at the incredibly difficult book of Revelation. I remember looking at it at uni with the Bible study I went too and I remember learning a lot. Last night was definitely, without a doubt, the best Bible study I’ve led. God moved amongst us. We had fun and we had a laugh. We read the Bible. I played a song to help us come into God’s presence which certainly helped us to connect with Him. Last night, though the conversation went on a tangent (I need to get myself a tangent flag like we had at uni), it was obviously what the group needed to hear.
As I walked home from work this afternoon, I bumped into one of the ladies in our group and she thanked me for it. She said that she felt God was there and that we connected. I’m never entirely sure how things go or how people are going to respond but hearing that was an encouragement – I had helped people come into God’s presence yesterday evening. I know for me it was amazing. After having challenging behaviour from pupils or school politics or just feeling grotty – those few moments were incredible.
Today, I had an okayish day thanks to one person in particular. But as I come to finish this blog, I realise that I’ve had an okayish day because God placed this person in my life, at the school and me in their lessons for a reason. I’m grateful to God for all the good He does in my life, even if sometimes I can’t see it because I am surrounded by darkness.