Friends, I am SO thrilled to invite you to a 14 day Bible Study and Photo challenge experience beginning tomorrow, June 20th! A friend and I did this together as sort of an experiment a few weeks ago when God stirred my heart about being intentional every day to find traces of where He had been and it was INCREDIBLE. Moments that touched my heart, encouraged me, refined me, or just took my breath away. What I found was that seeking the beautiful things in the everyday pointed me to Jesus over and over again. Traces of the Gospel and God’s love for me is so present in countless moments throughout the day, and I just felt God prompt me to commit to looking for the evidence of His goodness in the everyday.
I asked my friend Amy to do this with me and she said YES so willingly and guys–I cannot tell you how much it blessed me every day to hear what God was showing her. He used her to refine me and several times what she sent (out of what God showed her) was just what I needed to hear. The accountability we had was instrumental in this experience. There were some days that were really, really hard. And at the end of the day, we had to CHOOSE to find the beauty, because we knew we had committed that to one another. And we knew the other person was waiting for it from us every day! And without this challenge, I guarantee you that I would have went to bed with my heart in the wrong place–sin unchecked because I would not have been in the Word every night like I was when I was committed to this challenge. I am generally consistent about spending time in the morning praying and studying, but there was something so pivotal about this additional time each evening as I reflected about my day. It forced me to lay my heart bare before the Lord, and let the Cross do its work in me through His Word. And a lot of times, it was painful. But it was also FRUITFUL. Every. single. time. Find your tribe and invite them to do this WITH you. It will be much easier to stay accountable with people you actually know and see in person. You won’t regret it!
HERE’S HOW I DID IT: This experience cultivated an awareness throughout my day to keep my eyes open for the goodness of God, and when my heart was stirred I would take a photo of something that symbolized the moment. Sometimes I would take multiple photos throughout my day, and then at night after my kids would go to bed I would choose one to pray though and find the verse that I felt like best represented my experience/feelings/reflections. Sometimes I would google “verses about _______” and go from there. Sometimes I would look up a word in the concordance in the back of my Bible (the YouVersion app has this feature too! So helpful). And sometimes a moment would immediately remind me of a verse that I had written on my heart, or God would bring a certain Scripture to memory.
He uses EVERYTHING to let us know He is here, friends. It’s so evident, yet sometimes we neglect to even notice the miracles He does right in front of us. This has been such a game changer. If you commit to this challenge wholeheartedly, you will not be the same, in the best way. You will:
–Experience the Word coming ALIVE in your life.
–See God moving MORE in your life, because you are actively LOOKING for His hand.
–Cultivate a lifestyle of INTEGRATING God’s truth into your everyday life.
Reflecting on my first 14 days, this is what I felt like I experienced in my own life:
“18 Fix these words of mine in your hearts and minds; tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. 19 Teach them to your children, talking about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. ” (Deuteronomy 11:18-19, NIV)
That passage has always sounded a little intimidating to me, even overwhelming at times. But friends, it wasn’t. I was literally doing this every day, God’s word was running in the background of my mind ALL day and it wasn’t draining at all. It wasn’t hard. It wasn’t daunting. It was LIFE-GIVING. I want so badly for everyone to give this a shot, because it is SO worth it.
Are you ready to step up your personal Bible study and spiritual growth this summer?!
Here is the challenge: For 14 days…
- Find the beauty in the everyday. Keep your eyes open for God’s goodness, and document it. Take a picture.
- Think about why that was beautiful to you, the meaning behind the evidence. What does this say to you? Why did it get your attention, stir your heart? What does this say about God? Find/share a Bible verse that reflects what you felt/learned/etc. from that moment.
- Upload it to Instagram or Facebook. BE SURE TO include #FINDTHEBEAUTY at the end of your post and tag me (@rachelsweatt) so I can see what God is teaching you! (There’s a ton of our hashtag already out there, so tagging me helps me not miss your post!)
**Here are some examples from our 14 Day trial!
Here are some extras to take this to the next level:
*Dig deeper into God’s word. In one example below, Amy wanted to dig into different verses that used the word “vast”, because she was inspired by the vast sky one evening and how big God felt to her in that moment. What she learned was so powerful. Take time to ask God to show you NEW things about Him and His Word, and be willing to go the extra mile to find it.
*Take the Scripture you are correlating with your picture, and pray it back to God. Pray it over your circumstances, your relationships, your friends, even your enemies. Praying Scripture is POWERFUL and His word does not return void!
Every person that does this for the entire 14 days will be entered into a drawing for a great giveaway! This is really just a way for me to say thank you for doing this with me. It is so encouraging to me and I do not take your partnership in this ministry for granted!
After our first 14 days, I want to invite you to KEEP your eyes open for the beautiful things of God. Share pictures that represent His goodness in your life. Every month, I am going to try to do a “BEAUTY ROUNDUP” and share all the photos that people post and tag me for everyone to see and be encouraged by.
Are you ready to invite God to do His thing in your life through His Word?
Let’s do this! If you are IN, let me know in the comments so I can be looking for your pictures!