DIVING DEEPER

Welcome to the Diving Deeper area where you can learn more about Discipleship.

Discipleship is the process of becoming more like Christ. God doesn’t just want you to know about Jesus, he wants you to become like Jesus.

Refer back to this page for sermons and resources that can further develop your life long journey through Discipleship.

AUDIO SERMONS BY PASTOR RICK
    1. What would your life be like if you became like Jesus? Would it be better or worse? Join Pastor Rick as he examines what the Bible says about God’s plan for our lives.
    1. How would your life change if you decided to really follow Jesus? Spiritual growth is a choice. Join Pastor Rick as he examines the six things to do to become a follower of Christ.
    1. Have you ever read a book you could truly say changed your life? The Bible is called the Word of God. Join Pastor Rick as he examines seven specific ways God wants to change your life with his Word.
    1. Have you ever thought God was mad at you? That He was punishing you? What if God has a purpose for your problems? Join Pastor Rick as he examines Biblical truths about problems that come our way.
    1. Do you ever wonder why you make the same mistakes over and over? Do you feel like a failure? Join Pastor Rick as he teaches us the steps to take to avoid temptation.
    1. Are you tired of making the same mistakes? Do you need help to get unstuck? Listen in as Pastor Rick details the steps to freedom from temptation.
    1. Have you ever told anyone to “grow up”? What does that mean for a Christian? Join Pastor Rick as he examines the myth and reality of spiritual growth.
MINISTRY IDEAS & OPPORTUNITIES

At Saddleback Church


  1. Attend CLASS 201: Introduction to Spiritual Maturity
  2. Attend One of our Financial Freedom Worships at Saddleback Church
  3. Get connected or start a small group
  4. Take our Foundations study on the 11 core beliefs to build your life on either on campus or in your small group.

In Your Community


  1. Book Study: Choose a book of the Bible and commit to studying it in depth. Read through the entire book a few times. While doing this, get a basic understanding of how the book is structured, what the author’s message is, who he is speaking to, what the book’s purpose is, etc. Then start with a section of one chapter and read this through a few times asking the same questions as above. To help you in your study, you may want to pick up a commentary that helps explain things verse by verse.
  2. The ACTS Model: The ACTS model of prayer involves breaking our prayers up into different phases or focuses. The A stands for adoration. The first portion of our prayers should focus on adoring God for who he is and giving him honor and glory. The C stands for confession. A very basic part of prayer is self-examination and coming clean before God about our sin, confessing it, and then turning from it. The T stands for thanksgiving. Thanksgiving involves thanking God for who he is and what he has done. The S stands for supplication, which involves bringing our requests before God. This model helps us stay balanced in our prayers and attuned to the will of God.
  3. Fasting: The purpose of a traditional fast is to abstain from food in order to focus clearly on your relationship with God. You can also fast from television, entertainment, reading, or anything that distracts you from God. Those who are diabetic, pregnant, or who suffer from severe physical disorders when fasting from food should fast from other things that are not physically damaging. Remember, the goal is to develop a focus on God. In order to fast you may want to consider the following:
    • What is the purpose of this fast?
    • Begin with something small like one meal or one time slot.
    • During the fast, commit the time you would have spent eating to prayer, bible study, worship, etc. Use it as a time to focus on God.
  4. Journaling: Sometimes it is helpful to journal in order to see God’s work in our lives. You may want to start a journal that allows you to record some of the victories and struggles you are having. Record your thoughts and feelings as you go through a process of self-examination. Make it a point to review your journal annually to see how God has worked in your life over the past year.
  5. Money Management: Take some time to look over how you manage your money. If you don’t have a budget you may want to establish one. Spend some time praying over what God wants you to do with the money he has given you. This will then help you budget with God’s priorities in mind. If you need help with this it may be a good idea to see a Christian financial counselor.

“Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.” (1 Thessalonians 5:18 NIV)

In the U.S., we celebrate a day of thanksgiving once a year. But God wants us to be intentional about our thankfulness every day. He wants us to develop this spiritual habit, one that is reflected in the life of a radical believer. The truth is, the more deeply you understand God’s love, the more grateful you’re going to be.

So what does it mean to be radically grateful?

The Bible says in 1 Thessalonians 5:18, “Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus” (NIV). That’s radical gratitude. In all circumstances give thanks, because it’s God’s will for you.

You can thank God in every circumstance because God is in control. He can bring good out of evil. He can turn around the stupid mistakes you’ve made. No matter what happens, God isn’t going to stop loving you. There are a hundred things to be thankful for in any circumstance, even when the circumstance stinks.

Radical gratitude — being thankful in all circumstances — is God’s will because it creates fellowship.

What do I mean by that? Gratitude always builds deeper relationships between you and other people and between you and God.

Whoever you want to get closer to, start expressing gratitude to that person. If you’ve moved away from your husband or your wife, you need to start doing what you did when you were dating: Express gratitude. Write little notes of kindness and encouragement. Make calls or text during the day, just to tell him or her that you’re thankful. Do the things you did at first. The reason you’ve lost that lovin’ feeling is because you stopped doing the things that created that lovin’ feeling early on, and you take each other for granted.

Do you want to build your small group? Don’t just go to small group. During the week, text them, email them, call them, write them. Say, “I’m grateful for you, and here’s why.” You’ll find that the more grateful you are for your group, the more your group will bond.

The Bible tells us to “encourage one another and build each other up” (1 Thessalonians 5:11). As you build others up, you’ll find that God builds into your life as well through your deep relationships with him and others.

Talk It Over

  • Who do you need to encourage or connect with this week? To whom do you need to show your gratitude?
  • What are some simple ways you can express your gratitude to your spouse, friend, or small group members?

 

As you develop an attitude of gratitude, what changes do you think you will see in yourself and your relationships?



 
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