Yesterday, Sunday, I went to Sunday school (and church) as I am prone to do every Sunday. It was the beginning of new sections so I needed to choose a new class to attend. The one I had been going to, one on archaeology and the old testament, was great. But, in all honesty, I don't think I got much sustenance for my spiritual hunger.
The new class I'm in is for beginners and those who want to brush up on things. I am not a beginner; I have been a "real" Christian for nearly nine years now. The reason I decided to take this class is because when I was in Korea, I didn't get to attend church (or Sunday school) because of the churches in my area not having any English services. There was one church about 15-20 minutes away that had an English translation, but half the time you couldn't understand it very well and I wasn't getting fed.
So, I joined this class, which is led by the pastor of my church hoping to get back in the swing of things. So far there were four other people besides me and the pastor. He asked us all to write down what we'd like to do in the class, whether it was a topic or a book in the Bible - anything. By having us do this, he said he can gear the class more to what we're looking for. He also said that if others join who are new to the church he'd readjust things - which was fine by all of us.
One of the other class members said she was interested in becoming more diligent in her Bible reading and prayer life...the rest of us also seemed to want to improve in this area too. The same woman said she was also interested in memorizing more scripture. I think the pastor will give us verses to memorize weekly as well...but that might only be if we want to. He's not going to force it down our throats or anything like that, though I have a feeling he would really encourage us to memorize. I think it's a good thing to do, so I'm going to do my best with it.
For yesterday's class, he had us take turns reading the book of Ephesians out loud. This was just a starting point. He likes to give "titles" to the books of the Bible, and for this one he chose, "In Christ." He said that most times Christians will say that Christ is in us - which is true; however, they often forget that we are in Christ as well. I had mentioned something at one point about feeling inadequate after reading Ephesians - like there was so much that we have to do as Christians (or not do as the case may be). I said we aren't perfect; he said we are if we are in Christ. I had said something about only Jesus was perfect. Anyway, his point was that if we are in Christ, we are holy. If we are in Christ, our sins are blotted away and we are perfect. I understood what he meant, and I think he understood what I meant. I'm just having a little difficulty in relating the conversation into words. It was all good though.
Also, he talked a little about knowing when a situation is a spiritual battle. There were a couple of "hints" that he said can help us clue in. The first one is that we can't stop thinking about it and that it almost hurts us to the core. The barbs sink in and we can't let go; we can't seem to get rid of it. The other "hint" is that often times Satan will hit us with situations in which we struggle. For example, if you struggle with forgiveness, we will be confronted with situations where we need to forgive. Again, I'm not doing his explanations justice. I'm going to have to learn to write these things down, or blog about it the same day so that I might be able to explain things better. I really do apologize for not being very clear in this.
Anyway, I do want to let you know - and praise the Lord - that after that class I felt fed. I walked away feeling like I was getting back into the swing of things, like everything is going to be fine. I guess I've taken the first step in getting back into a life of prayer and Bible reading. I felt better spiritually after that class than I have in a long time! Isn't that great? I'm going to have to let the pastor know about that. I'm sure he'll be happy about that for me.
I also decided that this week I am going to read through Ephesians - one chapter per day and see what I can glean from it and maybe have something to share with the class next week. Our assignment this week was to go through the first 14 or 15 verses in chapter one and underline all the "in Christ's" that we can find. I've done this for all six chapters, just because that's what I wanted to do. Maybe I'll be able to come up with some thoughts or questions or things God has taught me through my readings this week, and share them with the class.
Well, it's getting a little late now and I've got school tomorrow. I'm feeling tired as well, so hopefully it won't take me too long to fall asleep tonight. Have to do some praying before I do fall asleep though. Anyway, I'm excited that I seem to be getting back into the swing of things again. It's been a long time coming, so I hope that I can continue and improve my walk again!
Have a Christ-filled day, and may God bless and protect you all!