Summary: The "Rebuilding Faith" series focuses on seven steps to renewing our faith. Using the example and ministry of Nehemiah, participants will walk one step per week closer to a renewal of faith. Diagram for series available at "http://www.michaelrhodge.com".
Seven Steps to Experiencing a Renewal of Faith
by Rev. Michael R. Hodge
Session Four: “Staying the Course” (United Focus)
Scripture Focus: Nehemiah 6:1-4, 10-16
Source: One of the resources in this week’s session is a message by Pastor Brian Bill of Pontiac Bible Church in Illinois. His message “Dealing with Distractions” helped to give structure to several of these points.
Notes for the Leader: In this session our study will turn towards the positive steps we can take in rebuilding faith. Building upon last week’s session of “Believing God’s Faithfulness”, now we are moving forward with this week’s material based on Step Four – United Focus. I pray that this session will open the eyes of your group to the need for a real resolve in seeking God on a daily basis. Real growth in faith will only come as we “Stay the Course” in our walk with Christ.
Pass by a golf course on any sunny afternoon and you will see faithful players walking or riding through the course. Golf is a great game to enjoy with friends on a beautiful day. But it’s also a test of endurance. It’s not a game that passes in just a few minutes. It is typically a game that lasts several hours. And as you struggle through one hole, you have to gather your resolve and improve on the next hole. In other words, it’s all about keeping your focus no matter how distracted you may become!
In this fourth session, we are going to be talking about what we’re calling a “United Focus”. Just as a successful golfer keeps his focus even when distractions come from every direction, so we need that resolve in our faith if we are to continue in this Rebuilding Faith journey. As we study Nehemiah 6 together, we are going to see these truths lived out in a very real way!
As we have moved through these sessions, this material has been all about Rebuilding Faith. It may very well be that you (as a group member) are not in a place of broken faith. In fact, you may be at a place of real encouragement and growth in faith. But imagine for a moment that this wasn’t the case.
For example, let’s imagine that you are at a place of real crisis in your faith. You’ve been out of fellowship with God. You haven’t prayed, sought Him, or worshipped Him for quite some time. And now you find yourself at a crossroad. Well what this journey THUS FAR has taught us is that…
1. STEP ONE is to recognize where you’ve missed the mark. That first step may not be a long process, but you need to look at your life and see where you’re off course.
2. STEP TWO is to examine your brokenness. Not just “Are you off course”…but what led you off course? What caused you to stray away from faith?
3. STEP THREE is that point where you need to make a decision. Are you going to trust and believe in God’s faithfulness? Because if you ARE, then now you have reason to press ahead in this journey.