Wednesday, November 27, 2013

My 2013 Bible Reading Project

As you can see I have been busy keeping up with my Bible reading Goals for 2013. I originally planned to keep track of my Bible reading on these checklists, highlighting them in yellow for the first read and then marking them with a pen on subsequent reads. I quickly lost track on the New Testament, especially 1 John, which I probably read over 30 times this year. I read the New Testament three times, the Gospels much more than that and most of the epistle more than that. I only read Revelation three times, and I still have the book of Ezekiel to read before the end of the year in the Old Testament. In the midst of this reading I carried out a number of projects which I haven't posted here, such as reading through the Gospels highlighting verses on intimacy with God, and others. I didn't accomplish all my goals for 2013, but I came close and there is still some time left to finish. How are you doing?

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Seven Stories of Hope

The Seven Stories of Hope are an evangelism tool being used around the world to lead unbelievers in a discovery Bible study that leads to faith in Jesus Christ. So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God - Romans 10:17. By finding responsive people (persons of peace) and telling them stories from Scripture or ideally leading a Bible study in their home we are building their faith with the Word of God and leading them to faith. There are many different versions of the Seven Stories of Hope, this collection are the favorites from my experience. The following is an excerpt from an adaptation of T4T that I have been working on. Each lesson is laid out with a process for leading Discipleship groups and discovery Bible studies. Let me know if you have any questions. I may be posting the full curriculum in progress soon.

Seven Stories of Hope

These seven stories are meant to be used as a long term evangelism tool for people who are far from God, but not yet ready to make a decision to follow Jesus and serve Him as their risen Lord. If someone is not ready to follow Jesus yet, ask them if they are willing to study the Bible with you. If they agree, take them through the “Seven Stories of Hope.” If they do not want to study the Bible with you, but are still willing to listen, begin to tell them these stories and orally prompt them with the “Head, Heart, Hands” questions.
These discovery Bible studies reveal Christ through His word and build faith in the hearts of the hearers. These studies can be done orally and simply told as a method of evangelism, but the more completely you can follow the process, the more effective it will be for developing reproducing disciples. These Bible studies help people discover Christ and make a decision to repent, believe, and serve Him as their risen Lord. If the participants repent and believe, there should be no delay in moving them out of these stories and into lessons for short-term discipleship. Call the participants to make a decision to give their lives to Jesus regularly. These studies should not delay the call to make a decision, but should supplement the call to make a decision. It may be helpful to ask, “What’s stopping you from giving your life to Jesus today?” Remember to be led by the Holy Spirit.

Story #1 –The Sinful Woman (Luke 7:36-50)

Look Back

Pastoral Care: Do introductions since this is your first time.

Loving Accountability: Skip this since this is your first meeting.

Prayer and worship: Remember, prayer is worship.

Look Up

New Lesson

Tell the Story: “The Woman Who Wept at Jesus’ Feet” (Luke 7:36-50). Read the story in two different translations.

Head, Heart, Hands

 Look Forward

Practice: In groups of 2-3, retell the Bible story to each other in your own words.  (Or do a skit to retell the story!)
2-3 willing volunteers retell the story to everyone.

Goal Setting: Trainers share who they will tell this story to this week. Fishing? Do you have a friend you can share this story with this week?
Trainer shares something he or she will do this week as a result of this story.
Following? What can you do this week as a result of this story?
Pray for success in what each said they would do as well as for any other prayer needs. 

Story #1 –The Sinful Woman (Luke 7:36-50)
Story #2 – Who Does God Accept? (Luke 18:9-17)
Story #3 – A Hole in the Roof (Luke 5:17-26)
Story #4 – The Woman Caught in Adultery (John 8:1-11)
Story #5 – Trial and Execution (Luke 22:66-23:25; 23:32-43)
Story #6 – The Cost of Following Jesus (Luke 18:18-30; 19:1-10)
Story #7 – Two Lost Sons (Luke 15:11-32)

Monday, November 18, 2013

More on Head, Heart, Hands

I posted previously about the "Head, Heart, Hands" method of inductive Bible study that I've been using for discipleship and in discovery Bible studies for evangelism as well. This is an expanded look at the method. All of this material is adapted from Chuck Wood and he is the author of the video below as well. You can check out his materials at

The Head, Heart, Hands Method

Head: Understanding, Facts

·        When is it? Where is it? Who is it? What happened?

·        Say it in your own words.
o   Ask the group, "Do you agree with this retelling? Is there something he added or left out that he shouldn't have?" As long as the group doesn't miss a key component of the passage, continue. If they miss something read the passage again. If someone states something that isn't in the passage, ask, "Where did you find [what he said] in this passage?" Reread the passage, if necessary.

Heart: Emotions; Promise, Feelings

·        What were the emotions of the characters during the different parts of the story?
·        How does this make you feel?

·        Quote: “To the Jews who had believed him, Jesus said, “If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” John 8:31-32

·        How does this make you free?

·        Who do you identify with in this passage?

Hands: Obedience, Applications

·        Quote: “Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” Matthew 28:19-20

·        Is there a command to obey? Sin to avoid? Example to follow?
·        How will you respond to what God has spoken to you?
·         What do you plan to do next week to apply what you have learned?
·         How can you make your application measurable?

You may get answers such as "My imam says this," or "My friend said that." When that happens, keep bringing it back by asking, "What does this passage of Scripture say?"

§  Tips for Story Telling

  • Break it down into logical sections
  • Imagine yourself being there and flowing through the story
  • Hit the high points
  • Don’t try to memorize the verses, just tell the story
  • Practice telling it several times
  • Use a note card if you have to
  • Don’t just read it, tell it

Tips for Facilitating the Group 
  • Very Important! Stick to the lesson outline
  •  Be prepared
  •  80-20 Rule – You only talk 20% of the time (Facilitate discussion, don’t teach)
  •  Delegate as much as you can (prayer, reading, etc…)
  •  Keep the group focused
  •  You don’t have to have all the answers
  •  Try to involve everyone but don’t force people to participate
  •  Don’t let a few people dominate the discussion
  •  Develop your questions before hand
  •  Encourage thoughtful answers
  •  Don’t embarrass people who have different  answers

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Blog Update (Whatever have I been doing?)

I haven't kept up with this blog lately, and while I wish I could be more faithful, I have been busy with the right things. I have been doing Evangelism and Missions training, which you can hear at my blog, preaching, and leading numerous Discipleship groups and Discovery Bible Studies. In addition I've been writing a Discovery Bible study and Short Term Discipleship curriculum adapted from T4T. In addition I'm doing a large research project and podcast on the history of the supernatural ministry through the last century, A History of Miracles. As always you can keep track of me through my newsletters and personal site.

All that said, I will be posting new content on this site in the coming weeks. During lulls feel free to check out

Saturday, November 2, 2013

Jesus Heals of Cancer (November 2013 Newsletter)

On October 27th, Sunday night I was ministering with Art Thomas in Otisville, Michigan. Art is a traveling evangelist and the president of WMI, the missions organization I serve full time as a Ministry Associate. When I met Art, I had just seen my third friend die of cancer after praying intensely for their healing. I was distraught. I prayed and asked God for help, asking specifically that God would send me to an evangelist with a healing ministry who heard God’s voice and was 30 or younger to mentor me. One month later I read Art’s book The Word of Knowledge in Action and found out he lived 40 minutes away from me. God has knit us together, and many of my greatest joys in ministry are of serving Art and the body of Christ.
That night Art taught on supernatural life in Jesus and another ministry partner and I were praying for people for physical healing. As I was moving in between people, a woman touched my shoulder and asked, “Would you pray for my husband before he leaves?”
“Absolutely!” I answered and followed her to a back corner of the church where her husband sat uncomfortably. “What’s wrong?” I asked.
“I have cancer.” He answered.
“OK.” I placed my hand on his shoulder and prayed a very simple prayer that took a few seconds. “Try that out. Do you notice any change?” He shook his head “no.” “What kind of cancer is it?” I asked. He and his wife told me that he had cancer in both lungs and was in severe pain, which is why he was about to leave the service. The pain was so intense, he was about to go home and take a pain pill. He was on Dilantin, which is the equivalent of morphine, every three hours. Knowing that he had pain in that moment, I prayed again believing that Jesus would touch his body and that we would know because the pain would leave. It was a short, simple prayer, this time addressing the cancer in the lungs. “How’s that?” I asked. His eyes grew wide.
“Wow, that’s way better!”
“No more pain?” I asked.
“It’s way better!” he exclaimed. His wife began praising the Lord.
“Are you 100%?” I asked.
“I don’t know, but it’s way better!”
“Ok, well let’s pray again to make sure you’re 100%,” I said, putting my hand back on his shoulder. I prayed a couple more times as their joy and excitement grew. After a minute he was nodding his head emphatically that all the pain was gone. His wife began dancing across the aisle, tears streaming down her face as she shouted praise to God.
“I have to tell somebody!” Her husband exclaimed, moving out of his seat to find someone he knew to tell. Only in that moment did it settle in me what this meant to them. I shouted for joy and did my own dance in the aisle. What an awesome Father we have who loves us and restores life to His children.
I checked in with the family about a week later, and they were both still overcome by the joy and love of God. All pain had left that night, and he recovered his energy and his appetite. Food tasted good to him again; he was symptom free. He had gone to the doctor and emphatically told the story to the nurses and the doctor, explaining that he didn’t need medication or chemotherapy anymore. While I would love a medical report, he doesn’t want to go through anymore testing and is content to know he is whole. I rejoice over what Jesus does, not because of any of our works or merit, but simply because of grace through faith.
Today I hunger even more to see the love, righteousness, and kingdom of God burst forth into people’s lives. His power is real. He loves us.

Read the rest of the November 2013 Newsletter.

Read past Newsletters.