[As this lessons begins, remind participants that everyone will be in a different place spiritually; therefore, as discussion is shared, encourage them to offer each other mercy and grace; especially during vulnerable moments or times of weakness. Our goal is never to fix anyone, but instead to listen and offer support when needed. Personal discussion, unless otherwise noted, should always remain confidential.]
*Begin by sharing a short lesson about the world’s tallest tree and longest root system. The world’s tallest tree is the California Redwood, growing up to 300 feet in height (show a picture). Its root system is surprisingly only 5-6 feet deep but up to 100 feet wide. However, the Shepherd’s tree stands anywhere from 20-30 feet tall with the world’s longest root system reaching up to 223 feet deep (show a picture).
Take Away: The health and depth of our roots determines how tall we grow in Christ.
Scripture: …for out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaketh (Matthew 12:34KJV).
Lesson: What goes in must come out.
*Demonstrate this with an empty cup filled with water, milk, and then juice. First, pick up the empty cup and pour some water into it. Follow this, by pouring the water into a pan, demonstrating that what goes in must come out. Repeat this process with the milk and juice. Pour all contents into the same pan.
*Reaction: explain that typically how we react to something speaks volumes about our character. What we first say, think, or do, reveals our root system, because remember, out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks. Therefore, the roots that are planted will determine the fruit that is seen.
*Jesus had a deep and healthy root system. How do we know this? Because He grew.
Jesus grew in wisdom and in stature and in favor with God and all the people (Luke 2:52 NLT).
*Pose this question: How do you think Jesus developed a deep and healthy root system?
*Because He meditated on the Word day and night, and He was very careful with what He let in, knowing that what goes in must come out. He did not walk in fear and doubt, but instead, in trust and faith. Jesus knew the promises of the Scriptures, and that was His reaction and even weapon against the devil when He was tempted in the wilderness (see Matthew 4).
*Pose this question: How can you begin to create a deep and healthy root system like Jesus?
*By meditating on the Word day and night like Joshua (Joshua 1:8).
*We all need to clean up our flower beds by using round-up (the Word of God), to eliminate the weeds, or the fear, doubt, and believed lies. Then we can begin to plant new seeds (or the promises of God), that encompass truth, life, and abundance. When the weeds are gone, the new seeds are able to grow and develop a healthy and deep root system. Because of this, our mouth will then speak the goodness of God that our heart contains.
Application: Read the blog titled, The Word of God is the Way to Wisdom and Success, by: Debra.
June 14, 2016
Joshua 1:8 This Book of the Law must not depart from your mouth. Meditate on it day and night so that you may act carefully according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way successful, and you will be wise.
Moses is dead and Joshua is now called by God to be the Leader of God’s people.
In his leadership of God’s people Joshua must allow his conversation and conduct to be that of the Word of God.
Joshua must not allow the Word of God to depart from his mouth, but to meditate on it day and night that He may be wise and successful in the responsibility God has given him as Leader.
The Word of God not only sharpens the mind, but it sharpens the soul too.
The Word of God must be food for thought for all of us if we plan to survive on this Christian journey.
The Word of God strengthens and inspires the mind and it is indeed medicine for our soul.
The Word of God is so important that like Joshua, we too are commanded to meditate on it day and night and never let it depart from out mouth also.
In other words, meditation on the Word of God should become a habit of our mind for this is the way to become spiritually minded.
God wanted to fill Joshua’s heart with His Word so he would have specific knowledge and understanding of what God wanted Him to do and how God wanted Him to lead God’s people, which was according to God’s standards and commands.
This is exactly what God wants to do in our lives too. He wants His word to be the driving force in our lives.
If we meditate on it day and night, God will reveal to us also His truth and instructions for wise and successful living.
Meditating on God’s Word requires us to shut out all the noise and voices of the world that are daily screaming for our attention and first place in our lives.
We must find a closet and shut the door so that the only voice we can hear is God.
This closet can be a quiet place on the beach, in a room in your home, in your car, in you backyard, in the woods, at the crab creek, on the ocean in a boat, in your garage or any private place where we can have stillness and a one on one conversation with God.
Once we have seek and found that secret place to be with God privately, we can ask for wisdom, guidance, power, knowledge and understanding in His Word and He will hear us and we will hear His voice speaking wisdom unto us through His Word.
As we spend intimate time with God meditating on His Word, we hear Him speak to us personally, as if we are the only person in the world and all His attention is focus on us alone.
It is the Holy Spirit that is within us that enables us to understand and interpret what God is saying to us through scripture, therefore, it is very important that we daily meditate on God’s Word and obey what it says for only then will be remain in tune with God and His will for us our lives.
True leadership, success and wisdom can only come from God.
God loves and values us so much that He has worked out the best possible plan for each of our lives through what He has written in His Word.
Meditation on God’s Word day and night is not an option if we plan to be successful and wise in what God has assigned to our hands. We must be willing to pursue God and His Word with diligence.
When we meditate on God’s Word, it changes our view of life and our situations and circumstances. We see what God sees. We learn that with God we can do all things through Him for nothing is impossible with Him. Philippians 4:13-I can do all things because of Christ who strengthens me.
Meditating on God’s Word day and night and never allowing it to depart from his lips, proved to Joshua that He can and did fulfill the role of “leader “of God’s people.
By faith in what He had meditated on and believed about God, Joshua was able to be used in a mighty way by God in taking God’s people into the land of promise.
Joshua had good success because He kept the Word of God in his mouth, he meditated on it daily and he obeyed what it said.
What has meditation and keeping of the Word of God in your mouth proved to be true in your life?
Are you operating in wisdom and success as God desires you to? Are you meditating on His Word day and night? Is the Word of God in your mouth and are you speaking it out daily? Have you designated a secret place for you and God to daily meet?
Believe it or not but God wants us to be successful and prosper in the things He has called us to do.
Joshua is proof to all of us today that the Word of God is the way to wisdom and success.
God bless and remember to meditate on God’s Word day and night and never let it depart from your mouth.
Activity: Let’s practice! Have a cork board with five problem scenarios tacked to it. For example, one problem may be that Betty has been sick for three weeks, and she wonders if she will ever get well. Next, have five promises from Scripture laid out on the table that the participants can choose from. Ask them to choose the promise that corresponds with each problem scenario on the board.
For example: have a promise typed out that reads: with his wounds we are healed (Isaiah 53:5). As each promise is identified, tack it over the problem it corresponds to, for the promises of God cover and eliminate our problems.
Goal: Knowing Scripture is very important. Not only is it our weapon against the devil, it determines the health of our inner roots. Remember, what goes in must come out, and as we meditate on the Word of God and speak life, that is what will pour out of our mouth when we are faced with difficult times or even when we are ministering to others.
So, let’s practice. Locate a specific Scripture that speaks to you personally, and meditate on it day and night for the next week. Challenge yourself, and try to have the Scripture memorized before the next Bible study session.