My heading is really about those drug store reading glasses you can buy without a prescription. My eye doctor calls 'em "cheaters." I was using them before my last eye appointment so he changed my contact prescription. He also mentioned that I may get to a point where I needed the cheaters again. The point has arrived. Not only have I had to pull the stinkin' things out for reading a few times (especially when I have my pocket NT with me -- like when I know the pastor is teaching from that particular part of the Bible) but I couldn't even thread the needle on my sewing machine yesterday. Or, do hemming without them. It's the first time I've had to cheat on anything besides reading. BTW, I'm making a curtain (single panel cuz my window is extra small) for my new office. I already bought a bright red shag rug and bright red throw pillows at IKEA. My curtain fabric has bright red and brown squarish shapes on it. Yeah, it will most definitely put some more color in my otherwise dull space.
After I typed the title, however, I couldn't help thinking maybe it could have greater meaning. The Apostle Paul wrote about difficulties in the last days. People will be lovers of self & money, boastful, arrogant, disobedient...well, the list goes on and you can find it in 2 Timothy 3:1-5. Down in verse 13 Paul wrote that things would go from bad to worse. Paul's admonition to Timothy was to stay focused on God's Word. I love it that Paul wrote (of course, this is the English version of it as found in the NASB) that Timothy had been taught the Sacred Writings from the time he was a boy -- and those Sacred Writings were able to give wisdom and, essentially, provide all the answers and instruction that Timothy needed.
That's what Johnny and I believe -- God's Word really is the instruction book for life. Not a book for one day a week but an absolutely vital part of the believer's life. So, with that in mind, Johnny and I are debuting a new Bible study curriculum for our church members in just a few weeks. The overall curriculum title is "Fusion" and the specific title of our study for this year is "An Invitation to Follow: A Study of the Gospel of Matthew." I've alluded to the fact that we have been working on a project a couple of times on the blog before. Here's how Fusion is gonna work at First Mansfield: there will be a weekly gathering separately for men and women. In class, the adults will hear a Bible lesson and will be able to pick up what we are calling a devotion guide. It will give Scripture to read for each day and three quick questions to ponder & answer and a prayer primer for the day. For those that desire a deeper study time there will be an indepth study guide posted on our website.
Here's the hope -- that more of our adults will commit to personal Bible study. For those that might be single, or at least participating in the study as a single, the hope is that they will learn what it means to not only be a believer in Jesus Christ, but what it looks like to really be a follower. For couples that are attending (class separately, but studying the same material) our hope is that the study will not only grow individual Christian lives but strengthen marriages and families. That some good, biblical conversations will happen in the home & between the couples.
For me, the drug store cheaters are a sign of the stage of life in which I find myself. When I put the stinkin' things on, though, I can see so clearly. My greatest desire is that there will be some that will see life so much more clearly and that God will be glorified through Fusion.
Serving the King,