I am super excited for the release of Inside Out and Upside Down: How Intimacy with Jesus Changes Everything! It’s a 7-week Bible study on the difference between empty religion and a Spirit-filled relationship with God. Because my weekly blog readers are important to me, I decided to give you a sneak peek today. 🙂
Here is the introduction to Inside Out:
Do you ever wonder why some women seem so in love with Jesus that they just glow, and you love to be around them? They know the Word so well that they always have it on their lips. These are the ladies who are eager to pray with you when you have a need.
Others go to church, but never seem to be happy. They may even serve in the church, attend Sunday school, and are very faithful, but never seem to be fulfilled. They have a form of godliness about them, but seem to lack the power of God at work in their lives.
How can the same God be the object of worship for all of them, yet only a handful seem to be really changed by Him? If God is so powerful, why do many women still feel empty and confused? Why do so many give up and walk away from the church?
That second woman was me. I was in the church, serving God, yet still unsatisfied in so many areas of my life. I knew there was more than what I was experiencing. I wanted to be the Spirit-filled woman in love with Jesus. But at times, I just wanted to walk away from church altogether.
All that changed when I started getting to really know God.
My heart’s desire is to see all women of God set free from bondage to sin, self, and society, and fall in love with the Savior. I’m not talking about going to church and being religious. I’m talking about knowing Jesus intimately and following Him with love and passion. I’m talking about a relationship with God that transcends culture and builds a Kingdom.
How did this passion develop for me?—through intimacy with God. And that’s what I want for you. Some of you already have a personal relationship with Jesus. If that is the case, then my prayer is that God would use this study to draw you deeper into the things of God. Some of you are saved, but you don’t understand what it means to know Jesus intimately. I pray this study would show you how.
And some of you don’t even know why you are reading this right now. That’s okay, too. My prayer for you is that in the pages of this book and the Scriptures you will read, you will discover a love that you have never known.
Jesus is real.
But He didn’t die for you to get religion. I know that there are those who don’t like it when I say that. I get it. Yes, the word religion is in the Bible. It’s not so much the denotation (dictionary definition) that I have a problem with. It’s the connotation (perceived understanding) of the word today.
Religion: the belief in a god or in a group of gods;
an organized system of beliefs, ceremonies, and rules used to worship a god or a group of gods;
an interest, a belief, or an activity that is very important to a person or group[i]
The word religion itself is amoral—neither good nor bad. But just as Satan perverts many amoral concepts (such as money), he has perverted religion to blind people to its dangers. As you can see, the definition of religion applies to any religion, not just Christianity. So what makes Christianity different from every other religion? Why can’t we just decide we are a Christian, go to a Christian church, and be okay with a “system of beliefs, ceremonies, and rules”?
That’s what this Bible study is all about. Christianity is under fire right now all over the globe. We need to know the truth about God and not just what is culturally acceptable. There is one true God, and His name is Jesus Christ. He is the only way to heaven. But what He desires is to know you and be in a personal relationship with you. No other religion offers that.
If you are tired of trying to make life work on your own, this study is for you. If you know there is more to life than what you are personally experiencing, this study is for you. If you want more of the life and Spirit of Jesus bringing victory and passion to your life, this study is for you. If you are confused and don’t even understand what it means to have a relationship with Jesus or how that could be possible, this study is for you.
So if you are ready, I invite you to dive in with me. Pray that the Holy Spirit will open your eyes and guide you into the truth that will set you free.
I’m already praying that for you.
If you would like to be notified when Inside Out releases, you can sign up here: Inside Out Pre-release List
[i] Merriam-Webster’s Learner’s Dictionary (online).