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{February 17, 2019}






Heartland Community Church


February 17 – 23, 2019

 

Walk This Way: Imitate

By Christina Marie Mitchell

Imitation. Mime.

These are words that I tend to flinch at because I usually associate them with being unoriginal or inauthentic to myself. If I imitate someone, am I really showing who I truly am? As God made me to be? Am I truly using my unique talents if I’m imitating those that I am influenced by?

These have been questions that I’ve struggled with because I always want to be able to say that something is my own. That I made it myself. But today, after leading worship and then sitting in the service, I realized that there is NO way that I could be the person that I am today without imitating something or someone. I’ve imitated my mother, which helped me find the confidence to be myself. I’ve imitated my best friend, which allowed me to REALLY love Calculus and appreciate analytical processes. I’ve imitated my uncle, which allowed me to discover my love for singing and worship.

As it was said today, human beings are made to imitate. Imitate something or someone. But how did I decide what/who I wanted to imitate?

“We imitate whomever or whatever we give ourselves to.”

That makes sense. It’s almost like I imitate those around me to survive. To adapt. To grow. As I learned how to become an independent woman, my mother was my go to. As I learned how to think for myself and make decisions, I had friends and family that I admired. There has always been someone that has shown me how to do something.

Knowing that I’m imitating so many people, all of whom clearly add some sort of value and enrichment in my life — it begs the question of: How am I imitating Jesus? Am I even imitating Jesus?

Ephesians 5: 2 says to walk in the way of love as Jesus did for us. That sounds like such a tall order because, it’s sometimes hard for me to engage with people consistently on most days. Walking in love . . . from afar . . . has always been my thing.

Dan challenged us to read the Gospel of Mark and really see how practical Jesus was in his everyday life. In dealing with friends, enemies, anger, etc. I never really thought to look at Jesus as someone who is able to be imitated. Because . . . it’s Jesus, the son of God. I am not Jesus. But Ephesians 5:1, as Dan pointed out, states that we are to imitate God because we are His sons/daughters.

That hit me. Because I’d never processed my relationship with God that deeply as to give myself permission to imitate Him. The freedom that came with that revelation was almost overwhelming. It nudges me to truly reflect on ways that I’ve been imitating Jesus and didn’t even realize it.

Imitation isn’t copying. It isn’t even insulting to do. Because it is written. Walk in love, by imitation. Of God. Of Jesus. With the guidance of the Holy Spirit. That amazes me. And comforts me at the same time.

{sunday 2.17.19}

Read Ephesians 5:1-2

Observe, Reflect, Apply: What does “walking in the way of love” mean to you? As you think about walking His way through imitation, do you see any ways in which you already imitate Jesus? How does that make you feel?

 

NEW RESOURCE: Our own Seth Davidson has begun a Journey Vlog that you can subscribe to. Each week he offers an 8-10 minute overview about the scripture reading for the day. Simply follow along, listening to the corresponding date. CLICK HERE to check it out. Be sure to click "subscribe" on the page to follow him on YouTube!

 

{personal reflection and bible reading plan}

As you read the verses each day, make notes of questions you have about what you’re reading as well as answering the reflection questions below. Grab a friend or two to discuss what you are learning and what God is doing in your lives.

{monday 2.18.19}

Read Acts 23:12-24

Observe, Reflect, Apply: Paul’s life was in grave danger. There was essentially a band of self-serving executioners trying to trick others so that they could kill him. Had his nephew not alerted Paul, who had him alert the Commander, Paul would certainly have met an untimely death. Though maybe not in a life or death situation, have you ever been shielded by Jesus’ love? Have you ever shielded others for the love of Jesus? 

{tuesday 2.19.19}

Read Acts 23:25-24:3

Observe, Reflect, Apply: First, note what you observe happening in these verses. Who is involved? What social norms, or laws, are being applied? In light of the previous verses, what do you think Is happening here? Is it just?

{wednesday 2.20.19}

Read Acts 24:4-16

Observe, Reflect, Apply: When Paul was taken before the Governor he spoke with confidence. He knew that he had been falsely accused and that the Jews had no proof of anything that they were accusing him of. Where in your life have you placed all faith that the truth will set you free? Do you believe that what is done in the dark will come out in the light, and that the truth always prevails? 

{thursday 2.21.19}

Read Acts 24:17-27

Observe, Reflect, Apply: Paul’s confidence begins to be shown to others when he asks the courts where all of his previous accusers are and why they are not there. He did no wrong during his imprisonment either and was granted some privileges in hopes that he would falter. Have you ever been set up? Have you ever found yourself in a position to defend yourself while someone tried to set a trap for you? How did you go about handling that?  

{friday 2.22.19}

Read Acts 25:1-15

Observe, Reflect, Apply: Paul could not get a fair trial. He had to keep defending himself just to defend himself. Have you ever been up against what must of been seen as a great conspiracy. Constant non stop barrage of injustices. What did you do to handle that?

{saturday 2.23.19}

Read Acts 25:16-26:1

Observe, Reflect, Apply: The Jews were absolutely bent on having Paul killed, one way or another, they wanted him dead. They had no qualms about the method, they tried setting up an ambush, bribery, offering favors, and anything else they could think of. But Paul remained steadfast in his innocence that Christ was alive even after he had died. How do you maintain that Christ is alive to those that mock or need physical proof?  Have you ever found yourself in ano win situation but kept moving forward anyway?

 

{community discussion questions}

We weren’t meant to experience the life of Jesus alone, so we encourage you to rally a few others to discuss what you are hearing, reading, and reflecting on together. Whether you are meeting as a Journey Community group, talking with a few friends throughout the week, or bringing up spiritual conversations around your table at home, feel free to use some of these questions as conversation starters on your journey.

  • Can you name a takeaway or challenge from the Sunday message?
  • How has that been relevant, challenging, or meaningful to your life this week?
  • What have you observed about God, Jesus, yourself, others, or God’s plan for you from these readings?
  • Where do you need a breakthrough from God this week?
  • Who do you need to share what you’re learning about God with?

 

{extra journey resources}

NEW RESOURCE: CLICK HERE to follow our own Seth Davidson on YouTube. He has begun a Journey Vlog that you can subscribe to. Each day he offers an 8-10 minute overview about the scripture reading for the day. Be sure to click "subscribe" on the page to follow this YouTube channel!

CLICK HERE to visit The Bible Project site and explore their super simple, super informative Bible videos (and other resources).

CLICK HERE to get the Read Scripture App, from our friends at The Bible Project.

CLICK HERE for more on how to use the observe-reflect-apply approach to getting the most out of your Bible reading.

The Bible App Get a free Bible for your phone, tablet, and computer. Experience the Bible anywhere, with options to highlight, save notes, and share what you are reading with others.

Bible Gateway Provides advanced Bible searching capabilities, which allow readers to find passages in scripture based on keywords, phrases, or scripture reference.

 

Please visit us on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter and share what you are learning, questioning or experiencing. We love conversations!

 

© 2019 Heartland Community Church

12175 S Strang Line Road, Olathe, KS 66062

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